Meal Planning Monday

January 18, 2021

Here's a little FWTFL update for y'all, since I said I was doing that here. 


Eating/workouts/Fitbit steps all went great on Week 1. Week 2 we had dinner with friends and I ordered well. My only hiccup was Wednesday when I ate what school graciously provided us. I nearly met my steps twice (9,800 both times) but have met my goal all other days. I skipped one workout, but only because I basically accidentally food poisoned myself Saturday night. Sunday was a bucket of fun. 


So don't buy raw Poke at lunch and eat it for dinner. It didn't go over well but tasted amazing. 


Lucky for me there is nothing on the books this week that will interrupt my regularly scheduled fitness goals. 




Monday | Chili (combining my recipe with Euna Mae's Brown Sugar Chili) 


Tuesday | Leftovers

Wednesday | Sam's Chick-Fil-A Nuggets with Fries

Thursday | Brined Pork chops (Issac Toups Cookbook), Baked Sweet Potatoes, and Green Beans

Friday | Braised Chicken (Issac Toups again), Potato and Pea Salad with Salad

Saturday | Eating Out

Sunday | Trader Joe's Meal

Breakfast - Orgain Shake or Atkins Bar
Lunch - (Low Carb) Cranberry Almond Chicken Salad, Raw Broccoli with Ranch (Reg Macro) with Gluten Free Crackers
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Yardi Gras - Brotherly Love - & Blood Tests Don't Lie

January 16, 2021

 I find the funniest thing about brothers is their undying love for each other and then the complete opposite feelings the next minute. 


Last night was a "People Let Me Tell Ya Bout My Best Friend" night. You could all but hear Harry Nilsson singing it in the background. 



I don't say this because they were the easiest going of people I've ever taken to Hobby Lobby. In fact they were rowdy, loud, and driving me insane with their need to sit in the buggie and giggle it around while I tried to shop. 

Just FYI - embroidery floss and gel food dye are not the items to delicately toss into a wild buggie of boys. 

While I was trying to unlock the car I snapped the pic above, they were treating the hood of my car like a drum and cackling away. 


I'm also in the phase of trying to slowly gather decor again. Next year I'll a touch more (gotta go easy on that $$) to my Mardi Gras decor. I've got a few things in my Amazon cart, but after getting Jeremy to agree to let me buy a NolaBee door hanger for every holiday that will happen this year... I gotta go easy on the requests. 


It's funny how when you're in Louisiana you don't need to make it feel like Louisiana. However, when you leave Louisiana you have to go out of your way to add some Louisiana to everything. 


Trust me, if I was made of money we would be full blown Yardi Gras this year. 


I was asked a question the other day and thought I'd clarify some Mardi Gras for my nonLouisiana people that visit me here. Mardi Gras goes a little like this...


Feast of the Epiphany (Jan 6) >>> parades ensue and are a weekly occurrence (we even had to reschedule church in Thibodaux because the route came in front of us - this is considered Carnival Season >>> Lundi Gras (Shrove Monday) - Zulu and Rex parades happen on this day but it is just one of the final two days of parades and king cake purchasing >> Mardi Gras (Fat Tuesday/Shrove Tuesday) - this is the last day of parades and you are supposed to eat rich fatty foods before Lent begins. >>> Ash Wednesday - This marks the first day of Lent and you will see all of your Catholic friends with Ashes on their foreheads as a sign of mourning and repentance to God. 


Looking up the specifics I was actually wrong in my thoughts the other day - turns out Mardi Gras depends on the date of Easter. I knew it was 40 days before Easter, but was thinking at the time it was effected by Epiphany Day. Mardi Gras can run from as early as Feb. 4 to as late as March 17. I honestly prefer a mid to late Mardi Gras because my birthday is Feb. 25. 

FYI  for the non resident folk - it's unlucky to eat King Cake outside of Mardi Gras season. And the baby... if you get that you have to buy the next cake. 



Now on to more pressing matters. 


The impending 35 is not treating me well. 


If I'm being transparent, I feel homely and old. My skin shows it. The masks just make my acne worse and is so blah. I've gained 10 lbs during quarantine and nothing, not even underwear fits right. 


The icing on the cake was getting my yearly health screening at work for our insurance. It showed right in my face my weight gain, my cholesterol being all out of wack due to the weight gain, and even my blood glucose being 10 points higher. 


So yes, I'm still back to working out and on week 2 of it. Wed - Friday wasn't the best of eating. I did my best Thursday and Friday but didn't track macros. At work I ate the lunch that was graciously provided instead of my old self denying eating fun food for the sake of the scale. It was insanely yummy and one of my favorite meals - bbq. 


But if I'm being totally transparent, I know it takes time to get back down, especially when you are not getting the added benefit of nursing a baby. Gosh that sheds weight for me. I just wish one week would get me back to where I previously was. 


But those numbers from the blood test, they don't lie. I can't very well see those same numbers next year. 


Has anyone else struggled with this? Share with me in the comments how you've been dealing with quarantine weight gain. 

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King Cake Reviews || Gracious Bakery Recipe

January 11, 2021

It's another King Cake Season... and that means I'm continuing my quest for a cake that is "up to snuff." 

First up for the year was the recipe for Gracious Bakery's king cake, they're out of New Orleans.  


Gracious Bakery King Cake Recipe



The dough was a great enriched brioche style. It has a wonderful butter flavor and makes the perfect small king cake. 

Seriously, for our family size, it is the perfect size cake. 

The filling is good and is very much bakery style, but your first bite you'll think exactly what Jeremy said "that's a lot of cinnamon." The more bites in and the less the cinnamon is attacking your senses. 

My only real complaint was the icing, I'm not for the glaze. I used less water than the recipe called for and it was still so runny that most came right off of the cake. 



I'll definitely be making this cake again, possible with a different filling and icing option, but only because the dough is just that good. 

It's not often I get a dough where I can really taste the butter, but you can really taste the butter in this style of dough. 

Now if someone will just tell me the type of dough Keller's in Lafayette uses, then my life would be complete. 

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Schedules, Sleep Training, & Breastfeeding

January 8, 2021

I found this post in draft from 2015 and thought I'd give it a little update, ya know... just a whole kid later. Harrison was nearly one when I wrote this and now he is nearly 6, meanwhile his brother is 2. 

A Few Updates: 


Breastfeeding - Harrison nursed until 18 months and gave up the paci shortly after that. He's continued to be a great sleeper, but once we surpassed the original Baby Wise book I went onto the Moms on Call app to help with his food/nap schedule. 

Elliot nursed just up to a year, it was half due to the fact that I was under so much stress that I quit producing and he was a distracted nurser by the time he was creeping to the age of 1. My supply was amazing in the beginning with him, I was even able to donate milk before the stress that was the later part of 2019 set in (work). 

Schedules/Sleep Training - I mentioned it above, but once Harry aged out of the first Baby Wise book we moved onto the Moms on Call app for our daily schedule. With Elliot I stuck to their app and initially planned to use them for sleep training. While I love that they are a softer take on Baby Wise, I kept hearing about Taking Cara Babies when I had just gotten home with Elliot. I splurged and it was a miracle lifesaver of a program. 

With Taking Cara Babies, Elliot learned to put himself to sleep and it taught me how to easily soothe a fussy newborn. He was being plopped in his little crib when he was tired but not asleep, and then soothed himself off to dream land. While I didn't rock Elliot as much as Harrison and I miss some of that, he was really a dream newborn and slept amazing (for a breastfed newborn). 

Funny enough with Elliot he continued to try and wake up to nurse at night nearly his entire first year. I was too tired to really figure out that he wasn't like his brother. Harrison quit nursing at night around 9 months on his own, but Elliot is a midnight snacker who was going to call Mama if Mama was willing to come. Once I caught onto him we put Harrison in our room for 3 nights (they share a room) so Elliot could work out the fact that he didn't need to eat at 2 AM. It only took one night of a 10 minute fuss. The second night he peeped for a minute. The third night he didn't budge. 

Now for the original post that I wrote 12/20/2015. 

>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>


I've talked about being a scheduler before on the blog, but now that we are two months shy of a year of this routine I thought I'd share what I've liked, disliked, and what I've done from the past several months.

Especially since I've spent so much time googling and browsing other blogs to see how other mamas felt about things and what they did.


To start, we loosely followed Baby Wise. I say loosely because I never truely did Cry It Out, we skipped purees, and I broke a few other BW rules. 

What I did get out of it was the schedule. It gave me an easy guide for how often the baby should be eating, a minimum mind you (feed that baby if it's hungry), and an idea of how much he should be sleeping. 

I know a lot of people hate BW but it really did help me get a feel for how many naps he would need at each age, when to drop feeds, how to drop feeds, and how to set our daily schedule. I didn't have the option to feed on demand since I had to go back to work and creating a schedule (and drinking a ton of water) forced my body to produce the amount of milk I needed at each feed or pump time. 

I seriously still get excited when I get 8 ounces at 2:30am. 

I've said it before, but we followed the BW schedules verbatim until the 4th month and then stalled at that schedule until 6 months when we began Baby Led Weaning. (Which is really just introducing table food, allowing the baby to self feed, and not giving purees.)

So basically I followed BW for schedules and their advice for sleep to an extent. 

................................................................

Harrison had his days and nights mixed up early on so for the first few days I kept him by a window during the day and in a dark room at night. 

After that we did the 5 S's - swaddle, side position, shush, sway, suck.

He also slept in the Rock n' Play for the first few months. I liked it, but any bassinet by the bed would be my ideal until they are done nursing several times a night sleeping more. He stayed in our room in the RNP or the Pack n' Play until he had gotten down to one feed during the night. (We have a 2 story house and there was no way I was running up and down stairs all night.) 

We did break the rules with sleep position and I let him sleep on his stomach once he could push himself up and roll over good. I really think it made him a better sleeper though. 

Around month 4-5 he had to really learn how to put himself back to sleep when he woke up and wasn't hungry. It started with fussing, we'd let him fuss for a few minutes before going up there. Eventually it turned into him talking and cooing, so we wouldn't go at all. Finally he has gotten to where he doesn't cry at night unless he actually needs someone and it's only during growth spurts and he wants to nurse. 

There's a lot out there about how they should be "sleeping through the night" and how they should be able to go all night without eating. I don't buy into it very much for two reasons - 1) I don't sleep through the night and never have, and 2) sometimes I wake up hungry. 

So if once in a blue moon he wants to nurse at night then I'm not arguing with him. It isn't an every night occurrence. 

The only issue with him not waking to feed, that happened between 4-5 months old, is that to maintain my milk supply for pumping I had to continue to wake up and pump at the time he was waking during the night. So in two months when we start weaning down to only morning and night feeds I'll get to sleep through the night too! 

I also know this is an extremely good sleeper, and I don't believe for one minute that every baby is this way. However, the scheduling really helped to set his metabolism so expect to eat and sleep at certain times. Now if you're nursing and exhausted from middle of the night feeds...I read that your milk during the night contains more serotonin to help the baby sleep. (We actually sleep later in the morning if he wakes up during the night to feed.)
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The Great Christmas Clean Up - Epiphany Day

January 7, 2021

What do you even say after a King's Day like yesterday? 

I bee-bopped home, paying attention to the Kanye trending on Twitter situation, and started taking down all of Christmas and putting out Mardi Gras. 

My main issue of concern being the every impending fuss of trying to find a killer standard king cake recipe (I love my French one but need a regular one too) or just purchasing more king cakes from Alabama this year. 

I'm trying a recipe this weekend by the way...



I've never commented on political issues, protesting, any of it on social media... ever. I've been on these platforms since their beginning and have blogged since the late 90's... nothing... not a peep from me people. 

In real life I'll speak my opinions, but not here. 

I'll say this though and I'm sure y'all will agree, it's heartbreaking seeing what happened at the Capital yesterday. But good grief if those people didn't rally to stay up all night for the Electoral College. Especially after the fear they must have faced yesterday. If you didn't see the Pence/Pelosi elbow bump, go find it. 


In more pressing news, my mother-in-law sent us home with a tub of Christmas Popcorn. 

Elliot has subsequently quit eating dinner in favor of watching me cook dinner while he sits on a stool and eats Christmas Popcorn. 


 Now, go find yourself some decent king cake and fill up on Christmas Popcorn. 

I'm going to pretend those bags under my nearly 35 year old eyes aren't really happening right now. 
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Meal Planning Monday... on yet another Tuesday

January 5, 2021

It's high time for a healthy revamp, I kind of mentioned it in my New Year's post. 

What that basically means is that I am back on Faster Way to Fat Loss (I did the program while pregnant with Elliot). While I am not a signed up active member of this 6-week round, I know the ins and outs and am implementing that into my eating right now. 

Now for workouts, I have their pregnancy workouts. The 1st trimester is very similar to her regular program. But right now my goal is to workout 5 days a week and make my 10,000 steps daily. The steps aren't that hard with where I work, I get those most days anyway. The workouts after work is what I am having to work to get going at again. 

What I am doing at the moment, yet another one of those I grabbed ages ago but... who remembers when Beach Body launched A Little Obsessed before 90 Day Obsession released? It was a 5 day workout that was 30 minutes each. Well, I wrote them all down back in the day and am doing them. You can actually Google and find the written down workouts online pretty easy. 

So that's that, macro counting, carb cycling, intermittent fasting, and workouts are back in order. I'll give a  little update every week with the meal plan too! 



Monday | Aidells Chicken Sausage, Bacon, Eggs, and Cheese Scramble

Tuesday | Taco Salads

Wednesday | Chicken Fajita Bowls with leftover Taco Veggies over Rice 

Thursday | Slow Cooker Honey Chicken over Rice with Broccoli

Friday | Homemade Pizzas on Naan Bread

Saturday | Eating Out

Sunday | Spaghetti over Zucchini Noodles/Trader Joe's Meal

Breakfast - Orgain Shake or Atkins Bar
Lunch - (Low Carb) Cranberry Almond Chicken Salad, Raw Broccoli with Ranch (Reg Macro) with Gluten Free Crackers
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2020 - The Year of Needed Change

January 1, 2021

As we are wrapping up a two week Christmas at our house I thought I'd share a little about out year, on top of the Christmas recap. 


At the risk of being offensive to anyone who might read this that we know, I apologize, but it's the truth. 


By January of 2020 I was praying for a way out of the job I was in. It just wasn't a good fit. In 12 year of teaching this would be only the second time I jumped ship and the first time I was honestly thinking of jumping mid year. I kept going, but I kept praying for a way out. 


Then March hit. I took a personal day because I was beyond drained, the next day I somehow had a stomach virus, and the next day the world was cancelled. 


I was out. 


The agony of the year was over . I was home and able to start working out of the depression I had found myself in. By the end of spring I officially quit and started the nervous search for a new position in the middle of a pandemic. 


It wasn't easy, but I found a wonderful place. I'm not even kidding you when I say my non-crying-self nearly cried daily from happiness at work. When I left Delcambre I had to find another Delcambre. You can't get a taste of that work environment (no matter how stressful it was trying to stay at the top of the school game) and then never have it again. 


But this fall we have thrived, in the most stressful virtual hybrid way ever. Harry is back in speech and has an amazing Kindergarten teacher. 


Oh how I have prayed for that. 


I adored her before, but after our IEP meeting I have grown so much more respect for her knowledge and understanding in the developmental aspects of early childhood education. 


My coworkers and class are amazing. Granted 5th graders will be 5th graders... they've been just what I needed after our move from South Louisiana. While much of what is fun in 5th grade has been cancelled or re imagined due to Covid, we are still doing our best to have fun and look for the positives in what we can do. 5th graders have to be reminded of this often, they don't naturally look at the positives. 


Now for Christmas... 


We saw Santa at The Sumit and I had to sit in to restrain our current Santa fearing child. 

The boys got a Lego table that converts to a regular table. Harrison had his Mario Lego dreams come true and Elliot got all the trains and Muppet Babies. We also got a swing set but that will go up whenever the HOA decides to okay it. 


After a week of quarantine we headed out to visit our parents. We stayed in Vidaila a few days and went to Monroe to see my MIL for an outside socially distant visit. 



We also burned a bit of energy down on the river. 


Those colors y'all! I snapped this when the sun was setting behind me. 

That about sums it up around here. Now for a few more relaxed days before we are moving and grooving again... and having to wear masks all day every day. 

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