Favorite Pregnancy Workouts

Before I got pregnant, I had a picture in my head of what I thought pregnancy would be like. I had these grand aspirations of being the healthiest, most active, veggie-loving pregnant lady. You know, because that could be real life.

Then I got pregnant and reality kind of hit.

Sometimes a bagel and cream cheese was literally the only thing that sounded appetizing. And I was amazed at how quickly I’d get out of breath while doing cardio.

So after a little bit of a freakout (partially thanks to all these crazy pregnancy emotions), I did what I could to adjust my expectations. My new goal became to eat as healthy as I could manage, and workout as frequently as possible, taking into considering my new growing belly and the limitations that brought with it.

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Once I made this adjustment in my expectations for myself, I felt a lot less pressure to be the perfect “healthy” pregnant lady. I realized that doing my best is all I can ask of myself. Sounds silly that it took me so long, but hey, I’m a bit of a perfectionist and these things take time.

Honestly, once I made this change, my workouts became a lot more enjoyable too! I allowed myself to step back from some of those fitness activities that just weren’t going as well thanks to being pregnant (like running – and thus having to pee every 5 minutes), and focused on workouts that worked with my new sense of balance and coordination.

So today, I thought I’d share with you a few of my favorite workouts while I’ve been pregnant. And hopefully it might give hope to anyone who is pregnant or may be thinking about having kids in the future that you CAN still keep up your fitness, as long as you make reasonable changes to your expectations and goals!

Group Fitness: BodyPump

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I’ve always been a BodyPump lover, so I am SO glad that I’ve been able to keep this up throughout my pregnancy so far. Not without making a few modifications though.

The first trimester I was able to complete everything pretty much as written, obviously stopping if anything became uncomfortable. Since I did get winded a little more easily, I had to pay attention and make sure I never got light headed (it happened on occasion during the squat track!), but otherwise things were pretty normal.

During the second trimester though (and now coming up on the 3rd), I’ve made some adjustments like inclining my bench (my doc says no laying flat on my back at all), dropping weights if I feel like I need to, and replacing the normal ab track with some pregnancy-friendly ab exercises.

If you don’t have an actual BodyPump class at your gym, you could easily include any kind of weight-lifting based class or even a circuit workout of your own into the mix. Just make sure to take the adjustments where you need them. But don’t let anyone tell you that you can’t lift weights while pregnant. You just have to be smart about it!

Group Fitness: Spin Class

I was also a huge spin fan pre-pregnancy, and it’s been one of my favorite classes since I became pregnant! What I think is great about it is that, although it’s a group class, spinning is such an individual thing and you can really make the class as challenging as you can handle. So you can easily adjust your speed and resistance based on your needs and how you’re body is feeling. Plus, it’s a dark room, so it’s not like anyone is watching whether you’re going balls-to-the-wall anyway.

The only real ACTUAL adjustment I’ve made (other than speed and resistance as needed) is that I have had to start changing the proportions of my bike and moving the handle bar higher. Leaning over just isn’t as comfortable as it used to be!

Side note: I was talking with a lady in my spin class who noticed I was pregnant, and she was telling me how she was literally taking a spin class the morning she gave birth at 40 weeks. That’s hardcore (and I hope I can be like her!)

10-Minute Prenatal Pilates

There are some workouts that make me a little nervous without being confident that what I’m doing is pregnancy-friendly. For me, pilates was one of those. All the pilates classes I ever took pre-pregnancy were really core focused and we spent a lot of time laying on our backs, which is obviously a pregnancy no-no.

But when I was looking online for pregnancy-based workouts (because I love to get ideas and inspiration from them!), I found these 10 minute solution prenatal pilates videos. I’ll admit, usually I’m not a fan of these cookie cutter “10 minute fix” kinds of workouts. But I decided to give them a shot, and let me tell you, I LOVE them for pregnancy core work!

My two favorites so far have been the Total Body Pilates and Core Pilates. I think they will be especially great once I get into the 3rd trimester and other core work really because harder and harder to manage.  

Elliptical or Incline Walking

As I said, after about week 10, running was pretty much out of the question. Baby Freckle is hanging out super low, and basically spends most of his day either hugging or kicking the crap out of my bladder. So every time I attempt to run, I only last about 5 minutes before I have to take a potty break.

I still want to get in plenty of cardio though (gotta get that endurance up for the labor thing!), so I’ve mainly switched to elliptical intervals or incline walking. Both are great for cardiovascular endurance, but are a little more low impact than your regular running.

Prenatal Barre Workouts

Barre, like pilates, is one of those things that I loved pre-pregnancy, but am always worried about doing without being sure of the pregnancy adjustments. I recently found some fun prenatal barre workouts that I’ve been loving because they are body weight focused and are great for core strength and balance (both which tend to be issues during pregnancy).

My favorites come from Barre Body, including the prenatal thigh workout and the prenatal glute workout. Plus her accent is just the cutest!

 

One thing you may notice is not on this list is yoga. And it’s not because I dont love yoga (in fact, I’m still trying to add it into my routine on a somewhat regular basis). But the truth is, I haven’t really found a yoga class or video that I love right now.

You definitely have some yoga limitations while pregnant, so I’ve found that some of the classes I’ve attended in person haven’t been as clear about what I can and can’t do (and I’m a competitive person, so you need to tell me or I’m going to try it!), and yoga videos just don’t get me into the flow like a real class does. So I’d really like to find an actual prenatal yoga class so that I know what is ok to do!

The moral of the story is that you CAN still workout while pregnant, it just requires some adjustments – both of your actual workout and your expectations. Every pregnancy is going to be different, and your limitations may change completely, so just listen to your body and do what feels best for you! Even if that includes spending some quality time on your couch every once and awhile :)

So tell me: What kinds of adjustments (actual and mental) have you had to make to your workouts based on injuries or medical situations? Mamas/mamas-to-be, how about you specifically?

5 Easy Protein-filled Work Snacks

Woot! Halfway through the week already!

For me the fun is just starting. I had my first of my 3 PhD interviews yesterday, and today I’m headed down south for #2 tomorrow. So my week is just gearing up!

Normally on a Wednesday I share with you some of the delicious things that I’ve been eating lately. But today we’re going to change things up a little bit. Why, you ask? Well 1) Because my eats have been pretty boring and repetitive lately. I feel like you guys are probably sick of seeing me eat egg sandwiches for breakfast. and 2) Because Jenn has run into some issues with people not following the WIAW rules, which really makes me sad. I mean, I totally can’t blame her for shutting it down. I just hate when people ruin things for everyone else for their own selfish reasons.

Ok, off my soapbox now.

So while I’m not going to be sharing with you guys some daily eats, I thought I’d stick with the food theme and share with you some of my favorite protein-filled snacks! Since I’ve become pregnant, I’ve been especially aware of the amount of protein that I’m taking in (because otherwise I find myself hungry an hour later), so I’ve been really working on making sure my snacks are healthy, reasonable in calories, and have adequate protein to keep me full.

protein filled office snacks

Greek Yogurt (especially with oats)

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Greek yogurt has always been a favorite of mine. Not only is it full of protein, but it’s also a nice sweet treat for the afternoon. The calcium boost doesn’t hurt either! I especially love these Chobani with oats, because the oats really help to keep you full all afternoon!

I definitely try to be aware of the sugar content though, because greek yogurts can absolutely be a sugar bomb. There are plenty of brands out there that are using stevia now, so I try to stick with those if at all possible. Just be careful, because just as many use artificial sweeteners to keep the calorie count down, which is definitely not my thing.

Fruit and Nut Butter

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I had a serious peanut butter aversion at the beginning of this pregnancy, but my love for nut butters has since come back with a vengeance! I love pairing it with either apples (Pink ladies are my faves!) or bananas. You get a little fruit (carbs) and a little nut butter (fat and protein), and it’s a healthy, fresh treat that will keep your tummy happy!

Bonus points if you serve it with an iced coffee. Yumm!

Fruit and hard boiled eggs

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I don’t know what took me so long to jump on the hard-boiled egg train, but now I’m obsessed! They are a great source of protein, and paired with some fruit they make a well-rounded snack. Plus they are just so darn cheap and easy to make! If you have not tried them already, I highly recommend you do that. immediately.

For all my preggo friends – they also recommend that pregnant women eat 2 eggs a day if possible, so it’s a win-win!

Yogurt and Cheese

20150210_161756 Early in my pregnancy, I developed some…errr… digestive issues… that have continued throughout the last 6 months. I’ve been trying to come up with natural solutions to the problem, and one that was recommended to me was a yogurt that boasts a lot of probiotics, like Activia. While I typically prefer greek yogurt, I think this is a great alternative if you’re not a fan of the thicker greek yogurt texture.

I especially like pairing my yogurt with some cheese for an extra protein boost. My favorites are either string cheese or babybel light. Plus they just make me feel like a kid again.

Nuts

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I like nuts. TWSS.

Sorry, I had to.

But seriously, nuts are a great protein and fat source that back a big punch into a small amount. If I’m having a day when I’m feeling particularly snacky, I love grabbing a handful of pitachio, almonds or cashews to help keep the hunger at bay.

Just be very aware of the amount that you’re taking in. It’s way too easy to eat through an entire bag of almonds without realizing it, and they can definitely be a calorie bomb if you go overboard. So just watch your portion control, and you’re good to go!

 

Well there you have it – 5 easy protein-filled snacks that are perfect for the office. Guaranteed to keep you full without breaking your calorie count for the day. Way better than the questionable granola bar or bag of MnMs that are hiding in your desk snack drawer.

Don’t lie, we’ve all got something like that in there!

Now you have no excuse!

So tell me: What are some of your favorite work snacks? What do you look for in good office pick-me-up snack?

How to prepare for an interview

Check out my 26 Week Bumpdate and hear some of the best awkward questions people seriously ask!

 

Today I’m starting my crazy week of PhD interviews  and I’m going to need all the finger crossing, “good lucks” and prayers that I can get. Not because I’m that worried about the interviews (I mean, I am, but I can only do my best and be confident in my abilities). But because I’m worried about how exhausting the next few days are going to be!

So please pray that I get some sleep, manage to keep stress to a minimum, and that none of my flights get cancelled, delayed, snowed in, or otherwise changed. Because my poor pregnant emotions just can’t handle it!

Thanks in advance! :)

Since I’ve been talking so much recently about the insanity of my PhD applications, I’ve gotten a lot of comments and questions about the process and what I’m doing to prepare. So I thought today I might step away from my typical health and fitness talk to share a little bit about how I’m preparing for the interviews.

But before you think “I’m not applying for a PhD ever, I don’t need to read this” and click away, I thought it would be worth mentioning that what I’m doing to prepare doesn’t just apply to these interviews. These are the same tips and tricks that I’ve used to prep for grad school interviews, internships, and jobs alike. And while I’m by NO means an expert, I have had a fair share of experience in this at this point, so hopefully I’m doing something right!

How to Prepare for an Interview

 

Do your research on the school/organization

This one seems like a “duh”, but I’m always amazed how few people actually take the time to do this. Go on their website, read about what the company is doing (or in my case, what the professor is researching), look for articles in the media, check out their social media pages. Stalk them as much as you would an old high school boyfriend on facebook (don’t lie, you know you’ve all been there).

Be prepared to not only be able to talk about what they do and the current projects that they are working on, but be able to add something to the conversation. Show that you’ve thought about some new ideas that take what they are currently doing one step further. Not only does this show that you care enough about the job/school to do your homework, but also that you’ve taken the time to think about how you could contribute there. That is going to stand out to the interview panel.

In my case, and for anyone applying to school, make sure you are doing research not only on the program, but also the people. What are their current research interests? What are the labs working on? What is the overall focus of the department? How do you feel like your interests could fit there?

Reflect on the common questions

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While you can never fully prepare for the questions they are going to throw at you, you CAN start reflecting on some of the common questions and have some basic ideas prepared. You’d be amazed at how many questions stem from the same basic ideas (character, strengths and weaknesses, experiences, handling of a situation), so it’s good to start thinking of some examples.

So before you go in, think about a couple of strengths and weaknesses (but remember to always share how your weaknesses can also be turned into strengths – always stay positive!), examples of how you handled difficult situations or overcame adversity, experiences that you’ve had that could relate to the position, etc. Don’t over practice your answers, but reflect on them enough that you can pull on them when you find a question that relates.

School-wise, I’ve been amazed at how many questions are similar to regular job interviews. They also want to know about your character, your strengths and weaknesses, and how you feel like your academic and professional experiences will help you succeed in graduate school.

Know what makes you unique

Whether you’re applying for school or a job, the reality is that you’re going to be competing with other people for a spot. Sad, but true. And most likely, they are all going to be equally as good of candidates, if they’ve made it to the interview stage. They may even have higher test scores, more job experiences, or more education than you. So you need to show the committee what makes you different.

Think about some experiences or trainings that you have that the average person probably wouldn’t. What classes did you take or projects did you do that were different? What job duties did you do that went above and beyond? Make sure to share those!

Arrive prepared

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You’d hope that prior to an interview that everyone involved will have looked at your resume/application and have a copy with them. But the reality is that people are busy, and sometimes they haven’t had a chance to check it out yet. So I always make sure to bring several extra copies of my resume and application with me. Not only can it help them out, it also makes me look as thought I’m organized and prepared.

I also make sure to arrive early, bring copies of any information that I may need (directions, schedule, etc), and any contact information with me in a portfolio. This also allows me a place to keep any business cards or documents that I’m given during the interview. Which are important for the last tip…

Remember that there is more to the interview than the questions

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Probably my BIGGEST tip of all, because I’ve seen it be the downfall of so many people: Remember that the actual question-and-answer session is only a tiny part of the whole interview. The interview literally starts the moment you accept the interview via phone/email, continues the second you walk into the door and sit in the lobby, and finishes after the whole day is over. So be on your best, most professional behavior the ENTIRE time.

That means going the extra mile. Smile and say hi to the receptionist. Make small talk with other employees/students. Be extremely kind and courteous to everyone you meet. DON’T sit on your phone in the lobby and ignore those around you – read through whatever pamphlets are around about the company, talk with whoever is around, look interested!

Same goes on your way out. Smile and thank everyone you’ve interacted with (especially the receptionist). Follow up with a thank you card or email to everyone who was part of the interview panel. Be professional all the way out to your car. Not only do you never know who is watching, but sometimes people like receptionists can have a lot of pull because they get the true sense of what you are like professionally.

 

Phew, ok! This post ended up being a lot longer than I originally intended! Whoops! It’s just something that I’ve seen SO many people mess up over stupid little things, and I want all of my readers to be successful people!

If you have any specific grad school interview related questions that I didn’t answer, please don’t hesitate to send me an email at myfreckledlifeblog@gmail.com. I’m always happy to answer any questions!

So tell me: What are you biggest interview tips? How do you prepare for an interview?

Prepping for the insanity

 Curious about different kinds of prenatal birthing classes? Check out my recap of the options on Freckles & Fingerpaint!

 

Well hello and happy Monday! Ok, let’s be real, it should really say “Well Hello!!!! and welcome to the dreaded Monday…” because we all know that’s what Monday really feels like.

Although I have to admit, waking up this morning to 36 degree weather kind of felt like a miracle. I was able to walk to the train station without any gloves on. It’s the little things in life, people.

Anyway, this week is my absolutely insane, “what was I even thinking?” week of travel for PhD interviews, so I’ll be in and out of this space somewhat sporadically. I have a few scheduled posts coming your way, but I may or may not be able to drop in an update you on how things are going depending on my schedule, sleep, and wifi situation. The first two being the biggest priorities at this point.

But in order to kick off this week, I thought I’d share my relaxing weekend that was all about prepping for the insanity.

Friday

20150220_152348The internet and phone lines went out at our office almost the entire day on Friday (yet they wouldn’t let us go home early…), so I spent a good chunk of my day doing what type-A people do: making lists and planning.

Considering I’m hopping through 3 different states (including 2 very different climate situations) in the span of 5 days, I’m trying to be as strategic as possible with my packing. Plus the fact that I’m still trying to strategically hide the fact that I’m pregnant during these interviews (not exactly the easiest feat at this point, I might add), I’m having to get a little creative. But I THINK I got everything planned out.

By the time I got home in the evening, Chris and I decided that we were in the mood for a chill, fun evening, and invited a few of our couple friends over for pizza and game night (including the lovely Aileen who, of course, brought some amazing baked goods!) We ended up hanging out until 10pm playing Like Minds, chowing down on pizza, and sharing stories.

The best part was that one of our couple friends brought their 6 week old baby with them. Not only was it fun to be able to see what life is going to be like with a 6 week old (it’s coming up so soon, guys!), but it was really entertaining to see Laney interact with this baby.

She could not for the life of her figure out what it was. She kept trying to sniff at it, and would jump backwards every time it squirmed or made any kind of noise. We had to keep pushing her away, because she just wanted to get all up in the baby’s face to get a good sniff!! It was the funniest thing to watch, because she was just so confused!

At least we know that Laney isn’t afraid or vicious around babies (not that we thought she would be). Hopefully after the first few days of having Baby Freckle at home, she’ll be a little more familiar with it and stop trying to sniff every inch!

Saturday

Saturday ended up being quite the lazy day. We knew that snow was predicted, so we headed out early on a Costco trip (we seriously had like 2 rolls of toilet paper left. I’m pretty sure we would have braved it even if the snow had already started!). The snow was coming down by the time we left, so we headed home and settled in for a day on the couch.

I did manage to take a mid-afternoon break for some baking. Baking, me? I know. Snow days are like full moons – they make me do strange things.

20150221_145956Baking selfie because, well, it just seemed appropriate. Have to document the rare occasion.

 We had a few over-ripe bananas, so I ended up making some banana and oatmeal bread. One for now, and one to freeze for later!

20150221_155842I had grand plans of getting in a good workout, but honestly my couch was just too comfy and I couldnt bring myself to get out of my sweatpants. Some days, you just need to embrace the lazy.

I did, however, manage to throw together a pretty tasty dinner of pan-seared cod with roasted asparagus and sweet potatoes.  I added some ketchup and tarter sauce after I took the picture, and it was like healthy fish and chips!

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Sunday

I ended up not sleeping all that well on Saturday night (surprise, surprise…), so I thoroughly took advantage of the fact that I could sleep in on Sunday morning. I even got super spoiled and Chris made me eggs and chicken breakfast sausage while I slowly made my way out of bed. Anyone else notice the weird sausage lump? Strange looking, but delicious nonetheless.

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Sunday morning was all about prepping for this coming week. I drafted several blog posts, did a ton of laundry, and got my packing list fully together.

Since I was super lazy on Saturday, I did manage to talk myself into a workout on Sunday afternoon with some of the new resistance bands we bought at Costco on Saturday. Such a great tool to have in a home gym!

Sunday night was the usual around here – church followed by dinner at the in-laws. By the time we got home, I pretty much fell into bed. This girl cannot handle bedtime past 9:30pm anymore!

Anyway, before I close out for the day, I thought I’d share with you all my workout recap from last week. It wasn’t the greatest of weeks, but considering the snow day and the weird schedule, I don’t think it was half bad.

Monday: Rest Day

Tuesday: 30 Minute Walk (3.5 incline at 3.5 speed), 30 minute weight circuit at home

Wednesday: 30 minute walk (3.5 incline at 3.5 speed), 2 prenatal pilates videos

Thursday: 30 Minute Jillian Michaels Ripped in 30

Friday: Rest Day

Saturday: Rest Day

Sunday: 25 min walk (3.0 incline at 3.5 speed), 30 minute weight and resistance band circuit

 

I hope you all have a great week! Cross your fingers for me this week, please!

So tell me: What did you do this weekend? Dog people – how does your dog do with babies?

Snug as a Pup in a Blanket {Five Favorites Friday}

 Happy Freezing Friday!!!

I’m not sure what the temps look like where you are, but I woke up to a brisk -4 degrees this morning. Yes, -4. That’s just not even right! And we’re looking at a high of 20 today.

Ok, Mother Nature, I get it. It’s been a weird winter. We had no snow until mid-February, and now you’ve gotten tired of our whining and decide to just freeze us all over. You had your laugh.

Now please bring spring? PLEASE?

Five Favorites Friday

 Anyway, I just wanted to drop in really quick to first of all thank you all for your kind words on yesterday’s Transparency post. This has definitely been a stressful month for me, and as a type-A person, I hate feeling like I’m not caught up with things. So I really appreciated all of your thoughts and support!

Now in honor of Friday and the fact that I’m snug as a bug with my space heater on under my desk, I thought I’d share a few of my favorite things from this cold and stressful week!

Linking up with Clare for Five on Friday and Katie for Friday Favorites!

Favorite Way to Relax: Snow Days!

20150217_083246Pretty sure this should be a given, but I loved having not only a long weekend, but a 4-day weekend thanks to the snow! I spent a lot of quality time in my PJs, in front of the fireplace, curled up with my two favorites. Laney especially loved the snow, and loves to leap around like a crazy little snow rabbit and dig nose holes. Clearly.

She is a bit like a little kid though. She’ll run around outside for 10-15 minutes, beg to come inside because she’s shivering, she’ll warm up for about 5 minutes, and then ask to go outside again. all. day. long. #spoiled

Favorite Recent Read: Where’d You Go, Bernadette?

 Where’d You Go, Bernadette was our most recent book club book, and I seriously breezed right through this book. It was such a fun, refreshing read after our last couple of heavier book.

What I really loved was that this book had such a different format. It was all a collection of letters, emails, conversations, etc. that together told the story of a woman named Bernadette who seemed a bit off her rocker, and then she suddenly went missing during a trip to Antarctica. Seems a little far-fetched, I know, but I promise you that the story really comes together in a way that makes you laugh, roll your eyes, and even issue an occasional snort.

I highly recommend it if you’re in the market for a fun, easy read that is both entertaining and cheery!

Favorite Rediscovered Treat: Smoothies

20150217_150452Normally I’m a big temperature person. In the winter I crave all warm things. In the summer I want everything cold (even my leftovers). So usually my smoothie game kind of falls by the wayside from October to March.

But this pregnancy has definitely changed up my sense of temperature and I am almost always craving cold things, even when the temperature outside is below freezing!! So after my workout over the weekend, I was suddenly craving something cold and chocolatey, and ended up with this chocolate banana protein smoothie. Yummmmm!

Favorite Light at the End of the Tunnel: March

I mentioned it in yesterday’s post, but next week is going to be absolutely INSANE for me. 3 interviews in 3 states over the course of 5 days. Did I mention that some are in different time zones? Yea… this is going to be one exhausted pregnant lady!

But I am so happy to know that after this week, it is over. Then we’re just in a holding pattern until we see how these offers come in, and then have to make our decision. But the fact is, once March 1 hits, I can stop focusing all my extra thoughts on grad school interviews and start focusing on fun things: like Baby Freckle!

We have a lot in store for March, including birthing classes, house prep, and Baby shower planning, but I am happy to know that I’ll actually be able to focus on all things baby instead of on myself and this PhD process!

So here is to March!

 Favorite Puppy Moments: Snug as a Pup in a Blanket?

20150219_20253820150219_210644I dont even know that these pictures need any explanation. Remember that time she used to be a wild animal and absolutely refused to cuddle? Yea…

Well I hope you all have a great weekend! I’ll see you on the flip side, where I will be blogging from all over the country! Eek!

So tell me: What is one thing that you are loving this week?

Being Transparent

So you may have noticed that things around here have gotten a little…fluffy. No new recipes, skipping a day (or days) here and there, less actual healthy living content, etc.

Well the truth is, that’s because I’m feeling a little fluffy lately too.

These last two months, and this last month specifically, have been absolutely insane for me. These grad school interviews have pretty much taken over my life and every waking thought. And when I’m not practicing interview questions during my commute in to work (yes, I talk to myself), I’m thinking about baby stuff.

Guys, my brain is full. Between that and pregnancy brain, I’ve been letting a lot of things slide. I didn’t get my Christmas thank you cards out until late January. My house hasn’t been deep cleaned since before the holidays. I have a blog to-do list that is literally pages long.

I have to give major props to Chris who has been picking up a lot of my slack around the house while I’ve been busy traveling, taking phone/skype interviews, and going to bed at 9pm. He has been awesome and I’m so lucky to have someone who has been so understanding.

But it has also been hard. Really hard. And I hate that I’ve let some of my favorite things slip a little bit. Even my exercise has slipped, just from lack of time and energy. I know I’m just making excuses, but I felt like it was important to be transparent on what my life really looks like right now.

The good thing? There is a light at the end of the tunnel. Next week is my insane travel week (3 interviews in 3 states over 5 days), and then I can breathe. Which is exactly what I plan on doing. Breathing and getting things back in order.

So I just wanted to thank you for bearing with me during this crazy time in my life. I’m hoping to get my cooking and exercise mojo back soon (and I’m sure Chris cant wait either – we’ve been eating a lot of random, thrown together meals lately!), and I cant wait to be ablw to share that with you all. So I just wanted to say thank you again, and I really appreciate all your support!

And since today’s post is all about transparency, how about some current truths in my life (inspired by Ashley).

Currently: Hanging out at the office while our internet is out. They recently redid our system, and now our internet goes out at least 1-2 a week. Awesome.

Current Book: Honestly, I’ve been horrible about reading lately. And when I do pick up a book, they are mostly pregnancy books. Any good suggestions?

Current Product Find: I don’t know if this counts, but I’ve been in the market for a new moisturizer recently because my pregnancy skin has been SUPER dry lately. I got a few samples to try the other day, so I’ll let you know which one ends up the winner.

Current Tune: I mentioned this a few weeks ago, but my love is still going strong! Sugar by Maroon 5

Current Foods: Anything super quick and easy, because time has been a hot commodity. My favorite go-to breakfast or hearty snack has been egg sandwiches. 2 eggs (scrambled) with a slice of cheddar cheese on a toasted whole wheat english muffin. Topped with sriracha, of course!

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Current Holy Moly: I have less than 15 weeks until Baby Freckle is here. Holy cow.

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Current Chore: We’re going to be putting our house on the market in the next few months, so we have a whole list of house projects that need to get completed!

Current Show(s): We’ve been marathoning The Walking Dead, but I’ve also been loving Castle and Forever (not that I’m up to date on any of them…#notime). When I walk on the treadmill, I’ve also been making my way through Gilmore Girls on Netflix. So good!

Current Indulgence: I had a complete and total pregnancy craving at the store the other day and picked up a box of Peanut Butter Cheerios. Now I can’t keep my hand out of the bag.

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Current Want: To find out where we’re going to be going in a few months! I’m ready to be done with this whole process and know what our future holds!

Current Confession: I have been super lazy on the exercise front lately. There have been a few days this week where I’ve chosen to stay in my PJs on the couch, even though I could have gotten a workout in.

Current Love: Snow Days. It was a much needed long weekend to relax, take lots of naps, and regroup a little bit.

Sorry that today’s post was less than cheerful. But it’s reality for me right now, and I wanted to be transparent!

So tell me: How do you handle stressful times in life? Share with me some of your “Currentlys”!

WIAW: Snow Day Edition

Back to work, back to work… Boooo.

I’m just saying, waking up after a 4 day weekend/snow day is no fun at all. I forgot just how dark and cold 5:30am is.

Probably didn’t help that even though the main roads are ok, my neighborhood is still a mess. I pretty much slipped and slid my way out to the main road and crossed my fingers.

But I digress. Happy Wednesday everyone! If you’re here on the mid-east coast, I hope you enjoyed your first (and probably) only snow storm of the year. I know I did! I’m really not a snow person at all (actually, I pretty much despise cold weather), but I am all about one good snow storm a year. Then I’m over it and ready for spring.

But it was quite a pretty sight to wake up to yesterday morning. A solid 7+ inches!

20150217_081826(1)Laney absolutely loved it, and spent as much time as she could outside sniffing it, eating it, and trying to catch all the little pieces she kicked up. It was like she was hunting snow! She also had a blast when we started throwing snowballs at her, although she learned pretty quickly that catching them in your mouth is NOT a good idea. One went halfway down her throat and she had to throw it back up. Lesson learned. Wait for it to hit the ground and then pounce on it!

 Me on the other hand, I pretty much spent 95% of my day like this:

20150217_161349In sweatpants, on the couch in front of the fire, marathoning The Walking Dead. Aka, perfection in an afternoon.

Honestly, it ended up being quite the relaxing day, which was exactly what I needed in preparation for next week’s insane travel schedule. I am going to be at 3 different schools, in 3 different states, over the course of 5 days. Yikes!

Anyway, in honor of yesterday’s snow day, I thought I’d give you a little sneak peak into what my food situation looked like. Now I will warn you, it’s a bit on the random side. But that’s what happens when you’re snowed into your house with limited food options. You get creative.

So today’s WIAW is going to be a special Snow Day edition! Thank you to Jenn for hosting! As always, make sure you head on over to her blog to see more of what other awesome bloggers have been eating lately!

Breakfast

20150217_084210Remember when I said my food yesterday was random? Well I wasn’t kidding. Breakfast ended up being a bowl of peanut butter cheerios (I total pregnancy craving that I caved to the other day at the store) with vanilla almond milk, leftover breakfast potatoes with ketchup, and some blackberries. Plus decaf coffee, of course!

Lunch

20150217_114502Another random, leftover meal. I had a slice of Hawaiian pizza from last week that needed to be finished up, so I paired that with a kale and brussels sprouts salad topped with tomatoes, dried cranberries, sunflower seeds and some poppyseed dressing. Yum!

Snack

20150217_150442I ended up having one of those afternoons where I just couldn’t stop the hunger. First up I had a banana, protein powder, almond milk and cocoa smoothie after my workout.

Sadly about 2 hours later, my tummy was grumbling again, so I made another small bowl of peanut butter cheerios with almond milk. This is why I dont normally buy them – I can’t handle myself! Thankfully this little extra helped hold me over until dinner time.

Dinner

20150217_184649Dinner was a snow day classic: chili! Thankfully we had pretty much all the ingredients already on hand, so we just tossed them all in the crock pot and let it cook all day. This one had ground venison, kidney beans, black beans, diced tomatoes, and corn, and was topped with cheese, green yogurt, and some oyster crackers for a crunch. Paired with a little bit of leftover Valentine’s Day bread to soak it all up!

I also may or may not have had a scoopful of mint chocolate chip ice cream to end the evening while watching the hockey game. But there is no picture, so therefore there is no evidence ;-P

Workout

I did manage to drag myself off the couch and out of my sweatpants for a little bit during the day to get in a workout. I started with 30 minutes of treadmill “incline” walking (aka small incline – 3.5 incline at 3.5 pace). Then I completed a total body strength circuit that definitely kicked my butt. It’s amazing how different my strength workouts seem to be these days. Maybe it’s just my body proportions now with baby, but suddenly things like push ups seem way more difficult!

All-in-all, not too bad for a random snow day! I tried to make sure to get in some greens and fruits during the day, even though all I really wanted on a snowy afternoon was carbs and ice cream. But it’s all about balance, right?

Now if only we could have gotten ANOTHER day at home… I could use another day to sleep in!

So tell me: What did you eat today? What did your workouts look like? What is your favorite snow day or holiday staple?

Hello snow (+10 fun facts about me)!

Check out my 25 Week Bumpdate + Thoughts on Prenatal Classes over on Freckles & Fingerpaint!

 

Happy Tuesday from snowy Virginia!

That’s right, I’m spending today at home with a SNOW DAY!! Woohooooo!!!! This is the best 4 day weekend ever!

I know some of you up in the Northeast are probably rolling your eyes right now, but considering we’ve literally had NO snow so far this winter, I was all about the snow dance yesterday. I was ready for some real snow fall! And thankfully, Mother Nature didn’t disappoint, and dropped about 7+ inches on us.

Heck yes!

Even Laney is excited!

20150217_083246She loves to eat the snow. Ridiculous.

Anyway, in honor of today’s totally random day, I thought I’d share with you a few random facts about me that you probably didn’t know! Because what’s more fun on a snow day than some fun facts, right? That’s what I’m going with at least.

Here we go!

1) Olives and capers are two of the only foods that I don’t like. Even though I’m not at all a picky eater, I will pick both of those things off of any dish. Yuck!

2) When my sister was born my parents gave me a babydoll. When I unwrapped it, I thought it was my sister. It took a lot of convincing until I realized that my sister and the doll were not the same thing. Then I named the doll “Flounder with Feet” after my favorite Little Mermaid character. That’s 3 year old creativity, people.

3) I am deathly afraid of sewer grates. I’m convinced that I’m going to fall through and either die, or be eaten by alligators.

4) I also hate having my feet stuck in things (blankets, pillows, people/animals laying on them, etc). It’s a fight or flight thing – I have this fear I wont be able to run away if something happens. Chris loves to torture me by holding my feet.

5) I went into college wanting to either be a Chemistry major or an Architecture major. I ended up with degrees in Political Science and French. I don’t use either of those in my current career field. I am a person of many passions.

6) Chris and I met in marching band in college, and I honestly almost didn’t give him a chance because he was several years younger than me and I was about to graduate. He was persistent though, and when I finally decided to give him a chance, I also gave him a timeline of 4 months (my graduation). Well, 6+ years later… here we are.

7) We get mistaken for siblings quite frequently. Like weirdly frequently. At least we know what our kids will look like?

8) When I graduated from college, I only knew how to make baked chicken, spaghetti and macaroni and cheese. Clearly I had to learn quickly.

9) We got Laney because we thought she was a corgi mix (that’s what the shelter in GA labeled her as). Little did we know she was actually a rare, wild breed – a Carolina Dog (aka American Dingo). Ahhh, look at puppy Laney!

10) Despite the fact that I’m 27, I’m the biggest chicken. If I ever have to go to the basement alone, I take the dog with me, and run up the stairs after I turn off the lights. You know, in case zombies try to eat me.

Well there you go, 10 totally random facts about me on this crazy snow day!

Now it’s your turn!

So tell me: Share some fun, weird facts about you!

A weekend of love

Long time, no talk.

I know, I disappeared again. Sorry about that. I ended up having a really rough day last Thursday, where I stayed at home and basically slept through most of the day. My body clearly needed some more sleep during this crazy month, and so I did my best to listen to it. Thankfully I was feeling MUCH better the next day, so I think it was exactly what I needed.

It was especially important because I wanted to be able to enjoy my long weekend! Chris and I figured it out, and this is actually the first long  weekend that we’ve been home in a year. A YEAR!

Since we knew we’d be trying to save my leave for the baby and grad school interviews, we’ve tried to make the most of our long weekends as much as possible. Which has meant that every single long weekend for the last year we’ve been traveling. Until this weekend.

And you’d better believe I enjoyed it.

Saturday

Chris had a referee class in the morning, so I took advantage of my time and slept in a bit before getting up for a Valentine’s Day BodyPump class. Complete with a goodie bag (that had a “penalty” attached – 25 squats!).

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I even got to wear my For Two Fitness tank, which I absolutely love! I got so many compliments on it too!

Since I was basically around the corner, I headed over to Costco to get some shopping done. And got completely distracted by the baby clothes. Seriously, if you’re in the market for baby clothes, check out Costco. They have GREAT prices on Carter’s stuff!

I mean seriously, how cute is this? Definitely had to go home with me.

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By the time I got home, I was definitely ready for lunch. I ended up eating a leftover chimichanga from dinner on Friday night, paired with a Mexican salad.

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Chris got home soon after lunch, so we spent some quality time hanging out and watching some Big Bang Theory and taking a nap. We’re super exciting over here, guys.

I will say, as a side note, I’ve been LOVING naps lately. It’s kind of a problem. I rarely took them in the first trimester, but all of a sudden this week I’ve been getting super exhausted. Baby Freckle growth spurt, maybe?

Anyway, Chris and I aren’t really huge Valentine’s Day people, so we decided to lay low instead of going out and dealing with the Valentine’s Day crowds. But we did want to do something fun, so we cooked a nice dinner together instead!

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We ended up making dijon lemon chicken thighs, carrots and potatoes, roasted asparagus, parmesan risotto and homemade bread. Plus some sparkling cider (since there was no wine for this preggo lady).

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After dinner, we decided to settle in and watch a movie. Laney wanted in on the action too. My two loves.

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We went with a romantic comedy – Blended. I highly recommend it. It was the perfect amount of funny and romantic. Plus it’s Adam Sandler and Drew Barrymore. What’s not to love? Especially when paired with a fire and some sparkling cider.

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Sunday

We were up fairly early on Sunday morning in preparation for a productive day. First up was church, followed by lunch at one of my favorite local restaurants – Basilico.

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I ended up with the 1/2 soup, 1/2 sandwich combo. Tomato basil orzo soup and an eggplant pesto sandwich. Both super tasty, but I seriously need to figure out how to remake that soup at home. SO tasty!

We also ended the meal by splitting some berry gelato. Because, well, it looked amazing. :)

The rest of the day was spent doing some DIY stuff around the house, including hanging new curtains in several rooms. Since we’re planning on selling the house a few months, we’re trying to get a few projects done each weekend to spruce up the house for sale. Oh the joys of being an adult, right?

Eventually we stopped for dinner, which included leftover venison stew, whole wheat egg noodles, asparagus, and homemade bread. Yummm!

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Enjoyed while watching the 40th anniversary of SNL. Anyone else watch the show? So funny! It was such an amazing thing to have so many cast members back! Although, what was up with Miley Cyrus and Kanye? I’m not really sure what was happening with either of them…

All in all, not too shabby for a holiday weekend!

Now I’m ready for another day at home, full of relaxing. And maybe even ANOTHER day, if this snow hits like they are calling for. 12 inches? Bring it on!

Guess I should probably try to brave the grocery store… wish me luck!

So tell me: How did you spend your Valentine’s Day? What do you usually do for long weekends?

WIAW: Official pregnancy meals edition

 Happy Wednesday!

Can you believe we’re halfway through this week already? More importantly, can you believe that we’re basically halfway through February already??? Where is the time going?

This has been quite a busy week for me, but I’m definitely trying to make the most of it and stay organized. As a type-A planner kind of person, to do lists and reminders are my best friends (especially with this serious case of pregnancy brain that I have going on), so I’ve been really trying to stay on top of things lately. Anyone have any great organizer or reminder apps that they recommend? I’m in the market for some good tools I can use on my phone so I can actually remember things I’m supposed to do!

Anyway, since today is Wednesday, I thought I’d share with you what I’ve been eating this week. And I say “this week”, because many of these foods have basically become my official meals during this pregnancy because I keep repeating them. I just can’t help it, baby freckle likes what baby freckle likes!

Plus I know I’m getting in some good nutrition with these meals, so I’m all for that.

So in honor of today’s WIAW, here are some of my “official” pregnancy meals. Thank you Jenn for the linkup, and I highly recommend you head on over to her blog to see what other bloggers are eating!

Breakfast

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This has seriously become the official breakfast of this pregnancy. I probably eat it at least 3 days a week! Just a simple egg sandwich with a whole wheat english muffin, 2 eggs, a slice of colby jack and sriracha (always srirach!) Paired with some frozen berries because I’ve been kind of lacking in the fruit department lately.

Snack #1

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I had my 24 week appointment this morning, so on the way into work I cave and ran by Starbucks. Hot coffee just was NOT sounding good (despite the 33 degree temperature outside) so I went with an iced decaf vanilla nonfat americano. Yes, I realize that’s a ridiculously long order! I paired it with an apple and some natural PB to keep my growling tummy at bay! I was off peanut butter for awhile, but this has become my go-to morning snack lately.

Lunch

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Thankfully the apples and PB kept me full for awhile and I ended up having a late lunch. I topped romaine with cherry tomatoes, carrots, a sprinkle of cheese, homemade tuna salad, ranch and buffalo sauce. Throwback to my first trimester of pregnancy when I’d eat buffalo salads every day!

(and for anyone wondering, my doc okayed 1 can of tuna fish a week – so this is about half a can’s worth!)

Snack #2

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It was my late day at the office, so I was stuck until 6pm. Meaning that around 4:30, I was ready for a snack. I topped a peach Activia yogurt with some homemade granola, and paired it with a babybel light. I’ve been loving this yogurt lately (thanks Costco for a giant pack!) because it’s a ton of probiotics stuffed into a small container. And if anyone needs some probiotic digestive help, it’s pregnant ladies. #amiright?

Dinner

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Dinner was something new and different for us! Remember when we brought 25+ lbs of venison home from Georgia? Well we’ve been trying to figure out what to do with all of it, and decided to get a little creative and make a venison roast. We put some venison in the crock pot along with potatoes, carrots, onions and mushrooms, beef stock, wine, cream of mushroom soup, and spices and let it cook down all day. Our house seriously smelled AMAZING when I got home.

I had mine over some whole wheat egg noodles with a generous helping of green beans on the side. Holy yum! This was like comfort food at it’s finest! Plus the venison has a ton of iron for Baby Freckle!

I also may have had a few bites of ice cream while watching dance moms… Hey, I had the house to myself last night. What else is a girl to do?

Workout

My stomach was feeling a little off when I got home from work last night, so I decided to take it slightly easy on the workout front. I ended up doing 25 minutes of low incline walking (4.0 incline at 3.6 speed). I was feeling OK afterwards, so I added on a 20 minute pregnancy barre video that kicked my tush. Literally. My glutes are crying this morning.

 

I know that my eats are starting to get a little boring around here, since I always seem to eat the SAME thing, so I’ll try and work on changing it up. Maybe I’ll even throw in some weekend meals for good measure, since those always seem to be slightly more exciting!

I hope you all have a great Wednesday!

So tell me: What are your favorite repeat meals? Are you a creature of habit or do you love to change things up daily?