Hellooooo October!!

Well it’s officially my favorite time of year. Things have been so hectic lately between planning Sean’s first birthday party, starting Play School and trying to maintain somewhat of a social life, but I’m trying to stop and smell the roses so to say. Sean loves going to school and I am enjoying it a lot more than I thought. Once a week I get to go somewhere with him where he can play with other babies and I also get to spend time with other parents. It’s a welcoming environment that allows us to vent, exchange joys and concerns, offer advice and just relax. It has made me realize that as parents we all have issues; no baby is the same, we need to be easier on ourselves and learn to support one another. Finding a community amongst parents is more important than I realized, and being one of the only one of my friends with a child I am so glad I found a school that encourages parental support and forming friendships. 

Now if this weather would chill out I’m getting anxious to get my pumpkin patch on. Halloween is my favorite day of the year and my son decided to be born on October 29 last year so needless to say this month is going to be ridiculously fun..busy, but fun. Im looking to try some new pumpkin and apple recipes over the next few weeks if anyone has any they love I’d love to hear some ideas or recipes. Aside from pumpkin patches what else are some fun Fall activities for families or couples?  

  

Adventure is my middle name! Well not really but you get itΒ 

Is this weather crazy or what? It is so warm even in the city, which for those of you unfamiliar with San Francisco, is rare. Today we ventured right outside of the city to a town called Sausalito amd celebrated my husband’s grandparents anniversary (yeah, that’s a mouth full.) Few things make me happier than getting out of the house with the family and going on an adventure, especially if it’s somewhere I haven’t been before. I’m sure I’m not the only one who realizes that sometimes we take our surroundings for granted because we are so used to them and our daily routines are so scheduled. I’m realizing it’s important to take the time and experience the beautiful places in our own backyard, so to say. I hope our lil guy enjoys adventures as much as I do and that we can help him appreciate nature. It worries me how reliant children are on social media and technology these days for entertainment, and while I wouldn’t want Sean to miss out on that, I also want him to be able to have experiences like did growing up; building forts, playing in the mud, climbing trees and then some. Do any of you who have kids have advice on how to balance the intense technology and the simple things in life as your kids get older?  

 

Stop and smell the roses

Happy August everyone, the Sunday of summer! Anyone else kind of confused as to how it can already be August? I feel like it was January five minutes ago. I was reminded the other day that my little human will be one years old in just two and a half months..people always tell you time flies by once your baby gets here but wow..what an understatement. I remember when I was pregnant last year during the hottest summer on record here, I prayed for time to just hurry up, now all I want is it to slow the heck down. Sean is quickly becoming a little man with his very own personality and I want to hold onto these moments as much as I can. Today we strolled around the park, him in his little baseball shirt, me with a large coffee in hand (per usual); I saw so many people with their toddlers running around and realized how soon that will be him and that I need to appreciate this pre-walking baby phase as much as possible. Sean loved looking at all the kids running around and laughed as they screamed and played tag..oh to be young again. I’m looking forward to the days when he can run around and talk, but don’t get me wrong, I’m in no hurry! It’s so fun watching our little ones grow up, and we grow up right along with them. Three quarters of the time I feel like I have no idea what I’m doing, there’s definitely no manual for becoming a parent and I may look like a mess or feel like a zombie sometimes but he’s happy and healthy, that’s what counts and in return makes me happier than I’ve ever been.  What have been some of your favorite memories with your little humans?

 

Run, mom, run!!

This is my first guest blog! Janice is a working momma of two whose article I was introduced to through a mutual friend. I won’t go into much detail as her article speaks for itself but I am so proud to be apart of a community of fit moms who give so much to their kids and their work, but also realize how important it us to for us to carve out time to work on ourselves and our health.

How to Be a Running Mom

By: Janice Bruce

I hear it all the time: “How do you do it?” Occasionally, someone is asking about my decadent mashed potatoes, but usually this has to do with my diligent running routine and how I am able to balance working and being a mom. Unlike many running moms, I think I had the benefit of already being a runner before I had kids.

I know it doesn’t come easily for everyone, though, and I have definitely struggled and sacrificed at times. Because running is so necessary for my sanity, I knew I needed to figure out a precise plan in order to be able to lace up my kicks multiple times a week. With 2 boys younger than 7, everything must be a coordinated effort.

Here is a rundown of how I manage it.

Always Be Ready

I know, you probably rolled your eyes when I mentioned a “precise plan.” When it comes to kids, everything is perfectly unplanned. I decided that the same goes for running. I tell myself, “I will get a run in some time today,” but I don’t always know when that will be, so I stay ready to dash out the door at any given time.

When my second was born, I was often doing my errands in my running clothes. I might drop the kids at swim lessons and run around the pool neighborhood. Or as soon as my wonderful husband came home from work, he took over kid duty for the next 30 to 45 minutes so I could work in my run for the day. (I should definitely mention that my partner in parenting has been hugely supportive, and I wouldn’t be able to juggle it all without him.)

Since returning to work, my routine has actually gotten a bit easier because the kids are at school or daycare all day and I run at lunchtime, then eat at my desk. On days when that doesn’t work out, I do sometimes find myself running as late as 10 o’clock at night. If you’re considering running alone very early or late, please take appropriate safety precautions or think about a gym membership. Here’s a bonus tip: Keep a backup set of shoes and clothes in your vehicle.

Pump Early & Often

I chose to breastfeed my little dudes. After learning everything I could about using and storing breast milk, I devised a plan. I pumped between 3 and 5 times a day because, remember, I didn’t know exactly when or for how long I would be gone on runs. While the duration of many of my runs wasn’t that long, sometimes my run times would coincide with feeding time. This would give my husband the ability to feed with or without me there. Another benefit of this was that I wasn’t always the one obligated to get up in the middle of the night, as we always had some milk stashed in the fridge.

The only time this didn’t work as well was on race days. Running a half marathon would mean that I would go up to 3 hours without pumping. To compensate, I pumped as soon as I woke up that morning around 4 a.m. I remember when my older son was just 7 months old, breakfast was in the car parked as close to the start line as we could manage while fellow racers were milling around waiting for the race to start. So learn the guidelines for milk storage, and save all you can.

Letting Go Sometimes

My best advice is probably to not stress out if you have to sacrifice something every so often. Take breaks when you need to. There will be a time when some other priority has to somehow fit into the schedule. For instance, I took a long break when I got a mommy makeover. As I said, I’ve been a runner a long time, and my athletic body was something I was proud of and really a part of my identity. Of course, pregnancy and breastfeeding brought changes. I suddenly had a lot of lumps and bulges that wouldn’t go away, even after a year and a half of diet and exercise.

I started reading up on surgical solutions and found this website from San Jose mommy makeover specialist Dr. Lepore. I realized I was going to need several weeks of downtime, and although I could gradually resume some exercise, I needed to keep it low-impact for a while. I decided this was something I wanted to prioritize, so I didn’t run for a few months. This little exercise in shifting gears helped make it easier to cope when other things came up, like the husband getting sick or school being canceled unexpectedly. I learned to let go a little and not beat myself up about skipping days.

I truly believe that running helps me be a better mom, so my family and I have found a way to make it a priority in our lives. With your loved ones’ support and some careful planning, you can make it a priority, too. 

 

The stay-at-home mom blues, womp womp

Well today was one of those days. The teething monster struck again last night and needless to say I was running on E all day; hence my woe is me mood (I swear I’m usually a ray of sunshine…well, most the time…sort of.) A little background, my husband and I are 26 and 27, which these days seems to be considered young for parents, which is further emphasized by the fact that I only have 2 friends who have babies, and of course they both live several hours away, making play dates pretty far and few between. Being a stay-at-home mom, I love being able to spend so much time with the lil human and take him with me wherever I go, but today I have to admit, I felt lonely. I’m lucky to have a husband who gets Monday’s off and is out of work by 5 but during the day I’ve been realizing I desperately need other mommy friends nearby; to brunch with, to commiserate with, to laugh with and to be a sounding board for one another. I love my best friends who don’t have babies and see them a lot, which makes me a lucky gal, but I think it’s safe to say as parents we do need other parents to relate to and assure one another that we’re not completely crazy, we’re simply parents. As lil human gets older and we get involved with parents groups I know I’ll look back on this and laugh, but I also find comfort in talking to all of you and reading your parenting blogs as well. I consider myself a very social person, so when I find myself spending some days mostly in the house, whether it’s due to chores or the baby needing help with teething, etc., I do get a little stir crazy sometimes. One think I know for sure, becoming a mom has greatly changed the way I view my parents; not only was I a crazy baby but as a child I was a crazy tomboy always getting into something..God bless those parents of mine! Do you have a lot of parent friends and if so have they always been your friends or did you meet them at baby related events?  

 

Mommy milestones

I don’t know about you guys but I did not have the best time being pregnant. Last year was the hottest year on record and I was the most pregnant over all of summer…needless to say I was not a happy camper. Being adopted, I knew how amazing it was to be able to carry my own child and never took it for granted…but holy hell did I struggle at times! I remember feeling like I was pregnant for years and that he was never going to make his arrival. Now I’m learning to never wish time away because tonight my little human sat up on his own and I stood there for several minutes in awe, then in wonderment at how this could possibly be happening already?! People always tell you once they’re here the years fly by, and I guess they were right. These milestones are so much fun but also a reminder that they are only babies for a short while (even though they’ll always be our babies whether they like it or not, ami right??) What have been your favorite milestones so far?  

 

Delicious and nutritious dessert

I don’t care what you say, dessert is amazing and I wish I could have it after every meal, but apparently that’s frowned upon. I like to try healthy alternative desserts that allow parents and kids to indulge in dessert more often than not. Now let’s be real, not all of the alternative recipes taste good, however this one truly is delicious and takes less time than you would think. Here’s my recipe for Banana Poppers

Ingredients

5 whole bananas

2 cups Fat free Greek yogurt

chopped nuts and/or dried fruit

chocolate morsels

cinnamon

10 minute prep time

Peel bananas and cut in half, place bananas on baking parchment paper to avoid mess. Dip each half into the Greek yogurt so that the banana is almost fully covered. Take your chopped nuts and/or dried fruit and sprinkle on top of each banana, followed by several chocolate morsels. If you’re like me and love cinnamon, sprinkle some on top of the Banana Poppers. Place in freezer for a few hours until after dinner, cut into pieces and share with the family! Tell me how you like them or if you make any modifications I would love to hear about that.