Fit 'N' Well Mommy

Being a mommy doesn't always mean sacrifice

A Day of Painting and The Importance of Sleep October 4, 2012

Painting!

I love it when I have a day with nothing planned (except for working out) and no place to go! Today is that day for us! Aside from taking my mom to the airport this morning, Keenan and I stayed in our PJs (a onsie, for him) and played at home. Since he has enjoyed playing with the box, I thought it would be fun to paint it. My original plan was to paint it as a car, but then Keenan said he wanted it to be a “Choo choo train.” We started out painting it as a train, but then it ended up being a smattering of different things and colors, so it is just one big colorful box! In the midst of painting the box, Keenan managed to paint himself, too! 🙂 In order to get all of the paint off, I gave him a quick bath, which he kept saying, “not bed time, no bath!” He sure is a child of routine, since he knows he doesn’t take a bath, unless it is bed time! All, in all, we had a great time painting outside this morning and Keenan can’t wait to play with his “painted box!”

His painted box!

Paint ALL over!

Before I forget, we tried something new for breakfast this morning. I saw a recipe for chocolate protein oatmeal the other day and decided to give it a try. I like oatmeal, but I rarely eat it, because it hardly contains any protein and it is loaded with WAY too many carbohydrates.  If I eat a bowl of regular oatmeal, I am usually hungry within 2 hours. When I saw this recipe, I was intrigued! It contains over 23 grams of protein!
Since I made it for the first time, I followed the recipe exactly, except I only had vanilla protein powder.

Chocolate protein oatmeal!

Chocolate Protein Oatmeal: (Serves 1)

Ingredients:

– 1/2 cup whole oats

– 3/4 cup water

– 1 tbsp flaxseed (ground)

-1 tbsp almond or peanut butter

– 1 tsp cocoa powder (unsweetened)

– 1 banana mashed

– 1 scoop of chocolate protein powder

Directions:

1. Mix oats, flaxseed, almond or peanut butter, cocoa powder and water together in a microwave safe bowl.

2. Cook in microwave for 2 minutes and stir.

3. Mix in mashed banana and protein powder. Enjoy!

Notes: It was good, but I think the chocolate protein powder would have made it more flavorful. Also, I think the peanut butter would have tasted better with the chocolate, so I will be sure to use it next time! All, in all, it was very satisfying and kept me full until lunch time. Keenan enjoyed it, too!

Enjoying his chocolate oats!

After breakfast, taking my mom to the airport and painting, Keenan and I had some “piano time” and then it was time for lunch. Since Keenan seemed more tired then usual, I made him a quick lunch of his favorite: peanut butter and honey sandwich with some carrots, applesauce and a glass of milk (in his fishy cup!). I felt like yogurt, so I made my “usual breakfast” for lunch, except with a peach this time! Also, look who got new slippers today…”Elmo” ones, thanks to Nonna!

Sporting his new “Elmo” slippers and enjoying his lunch!

After Keenan’s nap, we will head to CrossFit and then home for dinner. I am trying another crock pot creation/experiment for tonight’s dinner. I put 3 frozen chicken thighs at the bottom of my crock pot and topped it with a can of black beans mixed with onion, green and red bell peppers, salsa and lots of cumin, oregano, garlic no-salt seasoning from Costco and garlic salt. I’m letting it cook the rest of the afternoon. The last 30 minutes, I’m going to add some plain Greek yogurt and let it sit for 20 minutes before eating. I’m pairing it with a salad and dinner will be complete! I saw a similar recipe through a random search online that gave me the idea, so we’ll see how it turns out. I’ll keep you posted and be sure to take some pictures to share tomorrow!

Speaking of Keenan’s nap, I am still trying to work on getting more sleep these days. I know I said a while back that getting at least 8 hours of sleep a night was one of my goals, well… it still is! I have to admit, I haven’t been good at going to bed on time lately. It seems that there is always something to do and the only time I really have is after Keenan goes to bed, thus making my nights long. I always have the best intentions on going to bed early, but before I know it, it is already past 11 p.m.! Anyhow, I have been reading more about sleep and how it affects so many aspects of your life (not that I didn’t know this before). A lack of sleep can increase your risk for developing diabetes, cardiovascular disease and obesity. Insufficient sleep affects hormone levels that regulate appetite (eating more to stay awake), metabolism and stress, not to mention making you more irritable and decreases your ability to focus/concentrate on certain tasks. In addition, not getting enough sleep can lower your immune function, making you more prone to catching a cold. Inadequate sleep also affects your workouts, such as not having enough energy to get through them, which can decrease the intensity and power of your workout.  Also, your body can’t properly rest and repair itself, such as recovering from a strenuous workout. Sleep is a major part of our lives and it is important to make time for it. My goal for this month is to set an alarm at 9:30 p.m. every week night to remind myself to get ready for bed, allow some quiet time for reading and shutting out the lights by 10:30 p.m. Since I worry about Keenan getting enough sleep, it is time I take care of myself, and make sure I get enough sleep to be the best that I can be (no matter what is done or not)!

Question: How many hours of sleep (on average) do you get a night? What kind of bedtime routine/ritual do you have to help yourself unwind before going to sleep?

 

All packed and ready to go! July 30, 2012

Playing in the wading pool at Land Park today.

Well, we are all packed and ready to go! We leave bright and early tomorrow morning. I hope Keenan will sleep on the plane, so my husband and I can get some rest, but I think that is wishful thinking! We loaded my nook with several “Shaun the sheep” and “Elmo’s World” episodes, along with a few of his favorite toys, stickers, coloring book and crayons to keep him busy. What kinds of things do you bring to keep your child entertained on a long plane ride?

Today was a busy, but fun day! We made banana nut oatmeal pancakes for breakfast (along with lattes, of course!) and soon after, we started packing. Since we were meeting my parents at Land Park (and then to dinner at Tower Cafe afterward) after Keenan’s nap, I wanted to get everything packed before we left. Needless to say, we had every intention, but it didn’t happen! So, at 11:00 p.m. tonight, we finally finished! Everything is ready to go, except for our toiletries. I am exhausted, but I hope I can sleep tonight. It seems that every time we leave for a trip, I have a hard time falling asleep because I’m excited and/or anxious. Do any of you have a hard time going to sleep the night before leaving for a trip?

A great start to the day, banana oatmeal pancakes with peach slices on the side!

Once we got home from dinner (I highly recommend the Tower Cafe if you live in Sacramento. It is causal, but has a very eclectic (but delicious) menu, including wonderful desserts!), we put Keenan to bed and finished packing. It’s funny how much little room my husband and I have in our suitcases, since Keenan’s stuff overtakes everything (diapers, wipes, pac n’ play, ergo carrier, etc). After several “rearranges,” we finally made it work with only 2 bags (finally deciding to check-in the pac ‘n play) and 1 carry-on, without either bag being over the weight limit.

Swinging with Nonna and Avo at Land Park.

Back to dinner: my husband and I shared/split our meals. I got the “African Veggie Burger,” a patty made with peas, sweet potatoes, garbanzo beans, sesame and sunflower seeds, topped with a peanut sauce, lettuce, onion and pickles on a whole wheat bun (sorry, I completely forgot to take a picture of it, yet, again!). It was sure yummy! I also had a small side salad, instead of fries. My husband ordered the regular burger, so we cut our burgers in half and shared them (we each got to enjoy half of the other person’s burger). Since my husband got fries with his burger, I had to steal a few! They are so good! Every once an while, I get a craving for thick steak fries!

Since we are heading to a very remote place in Alaska (Lake Clark, where my in-laws have a lodge) for the next two weeks, I won’t be able to do much posting (if at all), since there is no cell phone reception or internet. I will be sure to take lots of pictures and post a full recap once we get back. Have a good week! Night!

 

Random…Elmo, Strollers and Solids July 27, 2012

Diane Sawyer was on Sesame Street.

I just love lazy mornings! Keenan woke up late (9:00 a.m.) again, so it was nice to sleep-in a bit! Since my husband is off today, we were able to have some family time this morning: eating breakfast together and watching a couple of Elmo’s World and Sesame Street episodes. Keenan rarely watches TV (he hasn’t really shown an interest and we are just too busy with other things!), so this morning was a treat! Ever since Keenan met Elmo at Sea World last week, he has been infatuated with him! He has wanted to watch Elmo on TV, sleep with his Elmo doll and wear his shoes! As you can see from the pictures, Keenan was mesmerized!

I had to take a picture of this: Keenan watching Sesame Street (Feist was singing her song, “1234″) while wearing Daddy’s shoes…too cute!

I did it again, I forgot to take a picture of breakfast this morning, which was my “usual,” with half of a banana (sliced) mixed in it. So, I snapped a quick picture after I finished, sorry! I’m still working on the whole picture thing!

Sorry, this was after I finished my “usual” breakfast. At least, you can still see some of my latte that I was drinking!

For lunch, I had my “typical:” turkey sandwich on an Oroweat sandwich thin with lettuce, tomato and Costco’s yogurt jalapeno dip! In addition, I had a few baby carrots and a nectarine  that I shared with Keenan. He ate leftover chicken, eggplant and carrots from last night’s dinner. Speaking of nectarines, do you like your stone fruit firm or soft? My husband and I always butt heads over stone fruit. I like my fruit to be firm (which he says is “rock hard”), while he likes his fruit to be soft (squishy and over ripe, in my opinion) and juicy. Fortunately, Keenan likes firm fruit, so that is what I buy!

On another note, I have received a couple of questions in regards to jogging strollers and introducing solids. Yes, I know these two things are totally unrelated and random, but I thought I would address them here.

Jogging Strollers:

We have the BOB revolution and we absolutely LOVE it! It is our only stroller, so we bought the car seat adapter to use when Keenan was an infant. It was a perfect stroller for us, because it is so versatile. In addition to jogging with it (as soon as I was cleared to exercise again at 6 weeks postpartum), we took it everywhere: shopping, going to the beach, walking, some hiking and traveling. It rides very smooth and it is so easy and effortless to push. You can walk over any terrain and the stroller still rides smooth. The catalyst for choosing the BOB was when my niece was born. My brother and sister-in-law had a Graco stroller, where the car seat locked right in, and when we took a family vacation in Spain and France, it was horrible on the cobble stone streets. It was so bumpy and rough, we had to carry the stroller! After that trip, my husband and I knew we wanted to get a stroller that had pneumatic tires and rode smooth, once we had children. When I found out I was pregnant, we did a lot of research and stumbled upon the BOB. We tried it out at REI and loved it! We have taken it with us on four trips and each time, it was very easy to travel with. It even rolls over soft sand! We folded it down, took the front wheel off, strapped the wheel, and put the whole thing in a large plastic bag (that we got from our airline, or you can buy a big package of extra large clear garbage bags at Costco) and gate-checked it. So far, the stroller has been fine and it has been our savior to have in the airport. Needless to say, I highly recommend the BOB, if you are in the market for a stroller. (I can take pictures of my husband breaking down the stroller for travel, and describe the process in another post, if anyone is interested.)

At the beach in San Diego!

Introducing Solids:

When my friend asked me what food I introduced to Keenan first, it brought back a lot of memories that I thought I would share. It seemed that everywhere you read or even who you talked with, the universal “first solid food” recommendation was rice cereal. Luckily, my sister-in-law told me that rice cereal constipates your baby (she experienced it with my niece), so she recommended starting with oatmeal or barley and to not even introduce rice cereal. I listened to her and started Keenan on oatmeal, making it myself by using whole oats, grinding them in a blender or food processor and cooking them with my frozen breast milk. I made big batches, poured the oatmeal into silicone ice cube trays and froze them. When it was time to feed Keenan his oatmeal, I would pop out a cube or two (depending on how much he was eating), place them in a microwave-safe bowl and heat for about 1 minute, until thawed. Of course, I would have to wait until it cooled before giving it to him. For added flavor and nutritional benefits, I added ground flax seed and cinnamon. Keenan loved it, in fact he ate oatmeal every morning for his breakfast until he was 15 months old! We started him on solids when he was 7 1/2 months old, rather late, according to the American Academy of Pediatrics. Our pediatrician follows the World Health Organization recommendations, which at the time, stated if your baby is exclusively breastfed, then solids don’t need to be introduced until 7 months. Since we visited my brother, sister-in-law and niece (for her 3rd birthday) in Montreal when Keenan was turning 7 months old, we waited until we got home from our trip to give him solids. Up until then, he really never showed any interest in our food, so it was perfect timing. When he ate oatmeal for the first time, he devoured it, so he was completely ready! When did you introduce solids to your children? Do you have any helpful tips for those who are just starting to introduce solid foods to their babies?

This afternoon, we are off to CrossFit for our second-to-last workout before we leave for Alaska (we are going to do one more WOD tomorrow morning, after I help out with the morning class) and then it’s dinner. On the menu for tonight is my Grilled Corn Salad (which we made for 4th of July) with chicken! It should be good!!

 

 
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