Monthly Archives: November 2012

Cola Pork Chops

Good morning! Happy last day of November!


Last night for dinner, I made cola pork chops, and I thought I’d share the recipe.

Cola Pork Chops    Serves: 4


  • 1/2 cup ketchup
  • 1/2 cup cola
  • 1 tbsp. brown sugar
  • 4 pork chops
  • flour to coat
  • salt and pepper to taste


  1. Coat pork chops in a light layer of flour and brown lightly in a skillet (If you’re pressed for time, you can skip this step. They will still turn out good!)
  2. Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Mix together the ketchup, cola, and brown sugar in a small bowl.
  3. Place pork chops in a baking pan and pour cola mixture over them, coating well. Sprinkle with salt and pepper.
  4. Bake 30-60 minutes, depending on the thickness of your pork chop.

I don’t drink coke or eat pork chops, but Danny vouched for me and said these pork chops were delicious.

This little lady like the mashed potatoes.

The secret to awesome mashed potatoes? Use milk warmed in the microwave and a bit of cream cheese. Yum!

The Weekend

We have a lot going on the weekend. Tomorrow morning, Danny has to work and Jaden has an allergy appointment. Then, later in the afternoon, my mom is coming over to watch the kids so Danny and I can see a movie and go out to dinner. I can’t even remember the last time we saw a movie or ate dinner alone together, so I am really looking forward to it! Thanks, Mom!

Sunday, we’re going with my family to cut down a Christmas tree. We don’t mess around when it comes to Christmas trees. We go to the same Christmas tree farm every year. It’s about an hour away, and we get a saw and head out to the fields on a horse-drawn carriage to cut down the perfect Christmas tree. The we drag the tree back and have hot cocoa while it gets wrapped up. Then, we spend way too long trying to get it tied to the roof of the car.

Here’s Danny and my dad cutting down our tree last year.

We didn’t have any snow for cutting down trees last year, and this year is supposed to be decent weather too. Hopefully, it won’t rain.

Flashback Friday

Danny found this picture in his phone last night – it’ probably three or four years old.

It makes me miss my long hair so much!! I cut my hair right before my brother got married about two and a half years ago, and it still hasn’t grown back! My hair grows sooo slow. It’s sad.


I have a lot of errands to do after the gym today, so here is my projected workout for this morning:

  • Treadmill – approx. 15 minutes
  • BodyPump – 60 minutes
  • Zumba – 60 minutes

Have a great weekend!

Questions of the day:

  • Does your hair grow fast or slow? Ever regret a haircut?
  • Any plans for this weekend?
  • Do you have date nights with your significant other?


Filed under Christmas, Dinner, Family Fun, Fitness, Recipes

Sweet Tooth

Last Night’s Workout

  • 2.33 miles treadmill

We had a family night at the gym last night – actually the kids went to the kid’s room while Danny and I worked out. I didn’t go to yoga, I spent 30 minutes on the treadmill instead.

Danny’s picture is blurry because I was running so fast. No, no I wasn’t. We went to the gym shortly after dinner, so running on a full stomach wasn’t going to happen. Instead I walked and jogged on the treadmill for 30 minutes while Danny did weights.

I got another Bingo stamp and only need one more stamp to fill my second card.

Also, while we were there, Jaden put his letter to Santa into the Santa Mailbox.

Apparently, Jacob is too old to write a letter to Santa.

Today’s Workout

  • 1.3 miles treadmill
  • Step + Sculpt Class = 60 minutes

Total Pile on the Miles: 46.53

Usually when I am on the treadmill, I feel like I have to run or jog in order to get a good workout. But I don’t think this is true – I think walking can be just as a good workout. You just need to get your body moving! So, this morning, instead of running I just decided to walk on the treadmill at about a 4.0 mph pace. I finished 1.3 miles in about 19 minutes and then went to Step+Strength class.


Today’s lunch was quick and easy because I was hungry!

I had egg whites and provolone cheese on a bagel thin with carrots, hummus, and blueberry Greek yogurt. I also had a mini 3 Musketeers bar to crave my sweet tooth. Only 24 calories.

I notice that I always crave something sweet after I eat lunch and dinner. It’s gotten better since I’ve started eating more protein, and I have learned to control it better, but I will always have a sweet tooth. Carbs and candy are the two best things in life! :)

This afternoon, I’m off to pick up my niece and hopefully get some Christmas wrapping done! I can’t believe that tomorrow is the last day of November already!

Questions of the day:

  • Do you prefer running or walking?
  • Do you have a sweet tooth?
  • Do your kids write letters to Santa? Did you write letters to Santa as a child?


Filed under Family Fun, Fitness, Lunch, Working Out

Furby and Coconut Fun

Weight Loss Wednesday

Well, I weighed myself for the first time in a week this morning. I was a little nervous because I ate a lot during Thanksgiving week. Weighing myself helps keep me accountable, and I know that if I don’t weigh myself, my weight will slowly creep up again.

Also, even though counting calories is time-consuming and a pain at times, it really helps me feel in control. When I don’t count calories I feel out of control and am more likely to overeat. It’s like getting on a plane and not knowing where your going – you’re not in control of the situation and you don’t know whether to bring shorts or a winter coat. Does that make sense?

Maybe not the best analogy, but counting calories and protein helps me feel in control of my eating. I usually don’t count calories on the weekend, but I really need too because I know that’s my biggest eating challenge.

Back to the scale. I did gain two pounds, but I feel like that was too be expected with the Thanksgiving holiday. And it could have been worse. Two pounds is not the end of the world. Three maybe, but not two. :)

We did go out and get frozen yogurt yesterday, but I made sure that it fell into my daily calorie range.

I don’t deny myself treats, I just make sure that I don’t go overboard. Sigh. I wish eating wasn’t such an issue for me, and I could just be one of those people who could eat what they wanted and not worry about it. Oh well. I am who I am. :)

Today’s Workout

  • Elliptical – 16 minutes
  • BodyPump – 60 minutes

Since I’ve already met my pile on the miles goal, I decided to switch it up this morning, and did the elliptical for about 16 minutes before going to BodyPump. I’m thinking about going to yoga tonight, but sometimes I’m so unmotivated to leave the house at night when it’s dark and cold outside. We’ll see!

Furby Fun

I have a confession to make. I bought Jaden a Furby for Christmas. No, that’s not the confession. The confession is that I bought him the Furby so that I could play with it myself.

When I showed Jaden the Furbies a while back, he said they looked cool. So, I jumped on the opportunity to buy him one for Christmas. I had a Toys R Us groupon deal, so the price wasn’t horrible. I figure that he’ll play with it for 3-4 days before he gets sick of it and then that Furby will be all mine!!

I figured at age 30 I’m too old to ask for  Furby for Christmas.

Furbies came out when I was young, so I’m feeling a bit nostalgic. And they’re so much cooler now. You can shape their personalities by how you treat them and play with them, and you can hook it up to your iPod or iPad. I don’t care – I’m excited for the Furby.

Reindeer Run

A couple of weeks ago, I mentioned the Reindeer Run 5k coming up in December. It’s funny because my stepmom called me up last night and asked if I wanted to run the race with her. Unfortunately, Danny has his once a year inventory at work that morning, and Jaden has an allergy appointment (and Saturday appointments are hard to get), so the timing just doesn’t work out. But I would  have actually done it because the weather is supposed to be a high of 54 degrees on Saturday.

I hope my stepmom still runs it though because it looks like fun! :)

Coconut Cracking

I finally got around to cracking open the coconut that I won from Matt’s blog awhile ago. I realized that I had no idea how to break open a coconut, so I started out by slamming it on the counter. Danny told me to knock it off before I broke the counter. Fine.

So, I took the coconut outside and pretended like I was stuck on a deserted island and  had to break open the coconut to save my life. I did this by smashing it on the cement. The kids loved it.

I finally got the coconut to crack open (and made a mess outside in the process.) Once I cracked it, Danny opened it. I tasted the water, but didn’t enjoy it. I think I waited too long to open the coconuts because one coconut was starting to get rotten.

Have a great day!

Questions of the day:

  • Do you have any races coming up?
  • What was your favorite toy as a kid?
  • Ever crack open a coconut? Ever been stuck on a deserted island?


Filed under Christmas, Fitness, Fun, Working Out


Good afternoon! Today has been one of those days when everything is crazy and busy. I am finally home and able to sit down at my computer!

Today’s Workout

  • 1.31 miles treadmill
  • Butts and Guts – 60 minutes

Total Pile on the Miles: 42.9 miles

Typical morning at the gym today. Ran on the treadmill for a short time and then went to Butts and Guts class.

After the gym, I picked up the last two Christmas gifts for the kids! Yes! I am done Christmas shopping for them. Now, I just everyone else on my list left to shop for.

Danny is the hardest to shop for. You’d think that being my husband, he’d be the easiest. But, no. He never tells me anything that he wants, and I hate just buying gift cards. I have a couple of ideas this year, but it be nice to have a few more.

Besides Danny, my in-laws are super hard to shop for. I like people like my mom, who just give me a nice and easy list to shop from. :) I do like Christmas shopping for others, but I want to get them something they actually want, and that’s kind of hard if they don’t tell you what they want.

I also picked up some hummus at the store because it’s been way too long since I’ve had some.


Lunch this afternoon was peanut butter french toast, egg whites, and blueberry Greek yogurt.


I usually keep track of how many grams of protein I eat on a daily basis.

Eating enough protein is something that I really struggle with, so keeping track of it helps me to know if I need to be eating more protein.

Protein is good for you because it helps you feel fuller longer, helps aid in weight loss, and helps rebuild your muscles after strength training.

I actually ate 100 grams of protein yesterday. I don’t think that has ever happened to me before, but I did have the Special K protein cereal in the morning and as an afternoon snack (1.5 cups = 20 grams of protein!) To get my protein in I usually stick to peanut butter, Greek yogurt, cereal, fish, and sometimes cheese.

I hope you have a good rest of your day!

Questions of the day:

  • Who is the hardest person you know to shop for?
  • Do you struggle with getting enough of a certain vitamin or food? Protein, fruits, veggies, fiber?
  • Do you eat meat? What’s your favorite? My favorite is the salmon stuffed with crab that Target sells. But I can only eat it once in a while or I get sick of it quickly.


Filed under Christmas, Fitness, Lunch, Working Out

Now Tastes Even Better!

It’s Monday and life has gone back to normal. The kids went back to school, Danny went back to work, and I went back to not eating pumpkin pie like it was the last pie on Earth.

Last night, we put up a few Christmas decorations. We bought a mini Christmas tree that the kids loved decorating.

We also worked on Jaden’s gingerbread man for school. The assignment is to decorate the gingerbread man as a family, so I made him little argyle pants and suspenders out of ribbon.


I bought the new Special K Protein cereal to try and had that for breakfast this morning.

I love when boxes say things like Now Tastes Even Better! Oh really? Then what did it taste like before?! Shouldn’t you make it taste better before you even sell it in the first place?!

I was actually surprised by the taste – I really liked it. They’re were slightly sweet, but not sugary like some cereal. A 3/4 cup serving has 120 calories and 10 grams of protein! That’s more protein and fewer calories than my normal Kashi oatmeal.

Today’s Workout

  • 1.5 miles treadmill
  • BodyPump – 60 minutes

Total Pile on the Miles: 41.59 miles

This is the last week for Pile on The Miles and Fitness Bingo. I have a total of 19 bingo cards so far! I am going to try to get three bingo cards in this week, that way I’ll have 22 cards in for the final drawing. Fingers crossed.

Last year I put together a post on fitness related gifts for other people. This year, I thought that it would be fun to share a few things on my wish list. Not everything is fitness related.

A new gym bag. I have had my Ed Hardy gym bag for about 2 years. It’s not an actual gym bag, it’s just a tote bag that I bought at TJMaxx. I don’t carry too much with me to the gym, but I like having a bag separate from my purse. I usually carry: a full-size towel for BodyPump, headphones and my phone, my gym card and keys, face wipes, and my water bottle.

I really like this gym bag from Athleta. It’s on sale today only – 20% off.

I debated whether or not I waned this next product, but then decided that I did – the Garmin forerunner 10.

I am not really a long distance runner, so I never really had a use for one of the fancy expensive Garmins. But then the more reasonably priced Garmin 10 came out. I usually use my Nike+ when running outside to calculate my distance, but it’s not always accurate and I must have my iPod in order for it to work. I don’t always like to run with music and I don’t want to have to wear an armband with my iPod just to calculate my distance, so this Garmin 10 would be pretty handy.

I might have mentioned this before, but my secret love is watching beauty videos on YouTube. Trust me, you can’t tell by looking at me that I have ever watched a beauty video, but I do get dressed up and do my makeup every once in a while. I have been hearing about this Urban Decay Naked Palette for years, so I thought it’d be nice to have.

Coffee drinking makes my teeth less than white. Enough said.

Oh yeah, I would also like peace on Earth and eternal health for my family and friends.

Questions of the day:

  • Did you workout today?
  • What is on your wish list? What are you buying for others?
  • Have you started Christmas shopping yet?!


Filed under Breakfast, Christmas, Fitness, Working Out

My Dad, the Babysitter

Good morning! Has this been a crazy busy weekend for anyone else?! I feel like we’ve been busy, busy, busy! Eating, visiting with family, shopping, eating some more.


Yesterday, we took the kids to Bass Pro Shop to see the Santa’s Wonderland and visit with Santa.

The line was very long, but they give you a ticket to come back at a certain time, so you can shop around instead of waiting in line. And I think it was worth the wait because they give you a nice free picture of your kids with Santa.

“Nice TapOut shirt”, said NO ONE EVER. Sorry, I had to say it.

They also have a lot of games set up for the kids to play.

Yesterday night, my dad was babysitting McCutie so we took her to the mall to see Santa. There was no line at the mall, but the cheapest picture cost $22, and they won’t let you take a picture with your own camera. Not cool. So, we just visited with Santa at the mall. McCutie ChristmasFace wanted nothing to do with sitting on Santa’s lap, but she did let Jacob hold her near him to say hello.

Since my dad was the babysitter in charge, he had to do all the babysitting duties.

Riding in the train with the kids…

…feeding the baby:

…drinking with the baby:

Good job, Dad! Maybe we should leave all three kids with you…alone. :)

Today’s Workout

  • Treadmill 3.3 miles

Total Pile on the Miles: 40.09 miles

I am already above my goal for pile on the miles! I made my goal 30 miles since I am also doing Fitness Bingo at my gym and need to take a lot of fitness classes. But I surprised myself and was able to get miles in whenever I could.

I definitely haven’t been eating very healthy this week. I know that’s to be expected with the holiday and all, but I hoped to stick to my daily calories everyday besides Thanksgiving. Yeah, that didn’t happen. But tomorrow is Monday, and I plan on getting back on track.

It’s really weird because whenever Danny is home, my eating kind of slides and I eat whatever I feel like, but when he’s at work, I eat just fine. I’m not really sure why that is. Maybe because we need to eat out more during the weekend, or we’re a lot busier so I just grab whatever to eat. But when he goes back to work tomorrow, I’ll go back to eating healthy. Strange.

Questions of the day:

  • Are you back to a normal work week tomorrow?
  • Has it been a busy weekend for you? Do any shopping?
  • Do you eat different when you significant other is around?


Filed under Christmas, Family Fun, Fitness, Working Out

My Brother Says I’m Crazy

Hello! I hope you all had a great Thanksgiving!

Today’s Workout

  • 3.26 miles

Total Pile on the Miles: 36. 79 miles

I didn’t go to BodyPump this morning. I ran on the treadmill instead. Right when I was done, my brother called me, and when I told him I was at the gym, he told me that I was crazy for going to the gym on Black Friday. Whatever. He told me that I should title this blog post I’m Crazy for Going to the Gym. But I’m not. I ate a lot of dessert last night…

Here are some pictures from yesterday.

We started out at my in-laws house and got to visit my nephew.

Then we went over to my grandparent’s house for dinner.

My favorite was the cranberry sauce. I meant to take some home and I forgot, and I was so sad :(

Dessert time.

Taking home some leftovers.

This afternoon, we’re going to my mom’s house for dinner. I’m bringing pumpkin roll and pumpkin pie!

Have a great afternoon!


Filed under Dinner, Family Fun

Thanksgiving 2012

Happy Thanksgiving!

Here are a few things that I am thankful for:

  • My kids – My children are what make my life worth living. I love seeing them learn new things, having fun, and seeing their unique personalities. They might not always behave, but I love my kids unconditionally and couldn’t imagine my life any other way.
  • My husband – I am very thankful for Danny. He is a wonderful husband and father. We might be the opposite in some ways but it works out well because we balance each other out. Danny supports me in everything I do and loves me…even though I can be a bit crazy at times.
  • My family - I am truly blessed to have such a close family. I can’t imagine what I would do without my family. They bring happiness and fun times to my life. We might not always see eye to eye but when it comes down to it, there isn’t anything that I wouldn’t do for my family (except for maybe eat a cheeseburger…that’s just gross :) ) But seriously, I am very lucky and thankful to have such a close and caring family.
  • My health – I am thankful for my legs because they let me run and exercise. I am thankful for my heart because it is healthy and lets me love. I am very thankful that I am a healthy person and can physically do anything I want in life. I realize that not everyone can do this, and that makes me even more thankful for what I am able to physically do.
  • Hot water – It’s weird, but it’s true. I don’t have many vices – I don’t smoke, I don’t do drugs, I rarely drink. But what I do love to do is take the hottest shower I can for the longest amount of time I can. It makes me happy. It also makes you think that not everyone has hot water. Not everyone even has water. It’s amazing the little things we really do take for granted.
  • A safe place to live – I am very thankful to have a roof over my head. I may complain about our house all the time once in a while, but I really am thankful to have a place to live.
  • Coffee and chocolate – Two of the best things in life. Enough said.

Today’s Workout

  • 3.51 miles treadmill

Total Pile on the Miles: 33.53 miles  Bring on the mashed potatoes!

I thought I would share some pictures from past Thanksgivings.

Jaden hates turkey:

Still hates his turkey…

At least Jacob likes his turkey:

I hope that you have a wonderful day and take time to be thankful for what you have. I think sometimes we’re so caught up in life that sometimes you really need to stop and be thankful for the things that you do have.


Filed under Family Fun, Fitness, Working Out

Best $5 I’ve Ever Spent

Happy Wednesday! Only one more until Thanksgiving, and then the shopping frenzy begins! Do you go shopping on Black Friday? I usually do, but I don’t think I’m going to go this year.

I hate that Black Friday shopping is now starting earlier and earlier. Stores are now opening on Thanksgiving night rather than on Friday. Most stores open up between 10pm and midnight now, and I don’t agree with that. It cuts into Thanksgiving and family time. Thanksgiving should be about spending time with family and being thankful for what you have, not about shopping.

I don’t mind waking up early on Friday to go shopping, but I’m not going to go shopping on Thanksgiving night for deals that will probably be offered up until Christmas anyway. My stepmom has to be at work at 11:30pm on Thanksgiving and works all night. She says that she doesn’t mind and the time goes by fast, but I still don’t think it’s fun. Not to mention that people get crazy on Black Friday. You couldn’t pay me to step anywhere near Wal-Mart or Best Buy on Friday.

Moving on…

Today’s Workout

  • 1.32 miles treadmill
  • BodyPump – 60 minutes

My gym got a new member today – Danny!

He is very excited about it!

It turns out that it’s only an extra $12 a month for Danny to join, and since my gym is closer to home, he decided to sign up. And when the new fitness challenge begins in January, he can be my partner. But only if he works out a lot. If he doesn’t workout a lot, then he can’t be my partner. Sorry.

His membership won’t include any fitness classes, just the use of the fitness center, but that’ll be fine because he usually only goes to BodyPump with me when he has the day off work.

Then, of course, all the pricing will change when the new fitness center opens next fall.


Lunch this afternoon was peanut butter french toast, blueberries, and some Greek yogurt for protein.

This afternoon, I am off to do some shopping for tomorrow and then the kids are getting haircuts. I had to pay Jacob $5 to get his haircut. True story. I feel bad because he really wants to grow his hair long, but his hair just looks so scraggly…and fluffy. I usually take a family picture on Thanksgiving for our Christmas cards, and I want everyone to look nice. So, we finally came to a comprise – I give him $5 and he cuts his hair.

Have a great afternoon!

Questions of the day:

  • Are you shopping on Black Friday?
  • Do you order any presents online? I do a lot of shopping online – it’s easier!
  • If you have boys, longish hair or short hair?


Filed under Fitness, Lunch, Working Out

Thanksgiving Calories

Gobble, gobble. Yesterday the kids made hand print turkeys.

Making them took up about 15 minutes of the day, and then they got back to scheming and plotting to take over the world.


Breakfast this morning was Kashi cereal.

I am taking a break from eating Kashi oatmeal everyday and switched over to the cereal.

Today’s Workout

  • 1 mile treadmill
  • “Aerobics Meets Zumba Meets Woo!” Class – 60 minutes

Total Pile on the Miles: 28.7 miles

The normal Butts and Guts teacher wasn’t there today so there was a substitute instructor. She normally teaches Zumba so the class was a mix of some dance moves, aerobics, ab work, and gluteus maximus work. It was actually pretty fun. I did manage to squeeze in one quick mile before class.

I got an email today saying that the average Thanksgiving meal is 1,800 calories. And on Thanksgiving Day the average American will consume 4,500 calories.

I think that 4,500 calories is definitely a lot of calories, but I also think that Thanksgiving is only one day out of the year. It would be different if you were consuming that many calories on a daily basis, and I think that people should be able to enjoy themselves on Thanksgiving without really worrying about it.


I got some good news the other day – I was accepted to be a FitFluential Ambassador.

FitFluential is a nationwide network of highly influential fitness enthusiasts sharing their journey both online and offline through multiple social media platforms. Founded in April of 2011 by Kelly Olexa, FitFluential was designed to connect health and wellness brands with their ideal target market through customized, long-term experiential and contextual marketing campaigns.

What does a FitFluential Ambassador do?

As an Ambassador, you’ll have opportunities to work with our brand partners. That means when fitness brands want to partner with solid FitFluentials on product launches, social media campaigns or audition bloggers for long-term partnerships, our Ambassadors are the first to be invited. This doesn’t mean that every Ambassador gets to participate in every opportunity. The brand ultimately approves the teams chosen for that particular campaign.

So, I am very excited about becoming a part of the FitFluential community!

Questions of the day:

  • Do you watch what you eat on Thanksgiving? Or do you just enjoy yourself?
  • What are you looking forward to eating the most on Thanksgiving?
  • Do you travel for Thanksgiving? Host Thanksgiving? Go to a restaurant?


Filed under Breakfast, Family Fun, Fitness, Working Out