Audrey – 5 months!

This little doll is 5 months old this week!P10-d958aI think 5 months is such a sweet spot in age for babies.  Coo-ing and smiling is nearly out of control but she mostly stays out of trouble…for a bit.  Audrey is quite the roller though, and especially loves to roll to her belly so she can look around.  Also on her list of loves? JACK!  He doesn’t even have to try and he has Audrey giggling so hard she gasps for breath.  It is one of my favorite sounds in the world.

Audrey loves being outside, and going to the park with Jack seemed to be a highlight of her week.  She has started playing peek-a-boo and really likes her toys.

Audrey 5 monthsAudrey is still a super long baby – 97th percentile for height and 50th for weight.  Her hair is beautiful and is so long that it hangs down past her eyes now.  And she got her first two teeth shortly after she turned 4 months old!  I might regret saying this but she didn’t have a hard time with these first two teeth at all.  No disruption of sleep or fussiness.  (Let’s hope this continues for the other upcoming teeth).  Speaking of sleep, we are doing really well on that front.  She goes down for the night by 8pm with usually one wake-up to eat and go right back down.  And when she is home she is a pretty good napper too.  She found her feet this week, and loves to hold the “happy baby” pose.

Audrey started day care this week.  My mom has been over every week for the past two months watching Audrey during the day.  We miss her so much already!  But Audrey is getting lots of smiling faces and fun new toys during the day.  Plus Jack and Audrey are getting ready to welcome their first cousin in about a month – and Gigi will be across the country helping welcome the sweet little girl into the family.  IMG_5042Audrey is an extremely happy and sweet little girl.  She wakes up in the morning coo-ing and singing like a little bird.  Matt and I are enjoying every day with her!


Saying hi! (& Announcing the Giveaway Winners!)

Hi there!  Long time no talk.  Life has been good, and things have been busy.  Some great workouts, some good family time, and lots of fun.  We had a Purdue-Illinois game while Grandma Jayne, Aunt Tina and Uncle Brandon played with Audrey.Purdue-Illinois

We’ve done lots of cooking and cleaningJack gloves

And not too bad on sleeping.Audrey 5 mnth nap

Still, somehow, it has taken me a couple of weeks to announce our winners.  I wrote the names on pieces of paper and let Jack pick out two winners….and he selected Theresa and Jami.  I will be emailing both of you today to set pick a TRX training session or Well Fed 2.

Blogiversary Giveaway!

Hello there!  I realized the other day that I was coming up on two years of blogging.  I started this blog as a way to show off baby Jack to friends and family who lived far away from us and to chronicle my journey of maintaining a healthy balance in life.  The last two years have seen that baby grow up to a toddler (almost a little boy), a move to a different state, me starting a PhD, and the addition of a new baby girl.  Thanks so much for coming along the journey with me!

To celebrate two years with you, my friends, I was thinking of two things that I could do as a give away to show my appreciation for you reading along…..Car ride

No!  Not those two things!! (I’m sure that’s against FTC regulations anyway.)

TRXFirst up:  A TRX training session for you and up to three of your closest friends.  You pick the time and I will deliver a great and fun workout for you and friends at Parkwest Fitness.  Must be in the West Lafayette area or willing to travel here to win.  You know that I love using the TRX for my own fitness and I love teaching.  I’m so excited to be able to share this with you!

Second up:  Well Fed 2 cookbook/recipe wonderland.  I have the original Well Fed and while I don’t follow anywhere near a strict Paleo diet, this cookbook has been great for inspiring me to use vegetables in more creative ways (and in greater proportion to the rest of my food) and has rekindled creativity in the kitchen for me.  I am going to treat myself to Well Fed 2 and want to also treat one of you to the book.  (And this is easier for me to mail to you rather than taking the TRX show on the road, wink wink.)

What do you have to do to get a chance to win?  Keeping with our theme of healthy balance, leave a comment about either (1) your favorite way to eat vegetables or (2) your favorite way to stay fit.

I’ll pick two winners at random and let you choose your gift.  Good luck!

Make this dressing! & weekly workouts

Matt and I had a home date night of sorts last night.  We did lots of cooking after the kids were in bed for the night.  A little bit more elaborate meals, chopping lots of veggies, checking out new recipes – it felt like old times.  We made this dressing last night and I tried in on a salad today.  Wow!  It is wonderful and so fresh.  It is very reminiscent of the tangy ginger dressing at Japanese steakhouses.  So even if long, fancy dinners out are few and far between we can still enjoy some great food.

Zingy Ginger Dressing (barely adapted from this recipe at The Clothes Make the Girl)photo (16)

  • 1/2 cup  olive oil 
  • 1/4 cup rice vinegar
  • 1 tablespoon coconut aminos
  • 2 medium carrots, peeled and cut into chunks
  • 1/4 medium yellow onion, peeled and cut into chunks
  • 2-inch piece fresh ginger, grated
  • 2 teaspoons minced garlic
  • salt and ground black pepper, to taste


  • Combine all ingredients in a food processor and purée until smooth. Add water 1 tablespoon at a time, if necessary, to reach your desired consistency. (I only needed to add 1)

Melissa (of The Clothes Make the Girl) recommends you let the dressing sit for at least 10 minutes before eating.  I plan on eating this on salads all week. Let me know if you try it!

It was a strong week of fitness.  My squats are getting deeper and I feel more “me” again.

Monday: Bodypump (woohoo! 5:15am)

Tuesday: am Ran 1 mile and Barre, pm Taught cycle

Wednesday:  Bodypump

Thursday:  Taught a chipper style TRX class.  This was a great one!  I saw one my regulars today and she said she was happily sore.  (I skipped out on the rowing to coach but the ladies seemed to appreciate the extra cardio).  If you don’t have a TRX you could adapt most of these exercises to just use body weight.

100 jump ropes
90 TRX squats
100m row
70 TRX sit-ups
60 TRX mid rows
50 walking lunges
400m row
30 TRX chest presses
20 TRX pull-ups
10 burpess

Friday:  taught cycle

Saturday:  off

Have a great week!

Audrey – 4 Months

This happy little girl turns 4 months today.IMG_4957

Audrey is a complete delight, and sometimes I wonder how I got SO lucky.  She wakes up coo-ing in a super sweet voice.  She is happy to talk to her mobile for awhile and will flip herself to her side to talk to me too.2.8.15

Speaking of movement, she is all over.  She turns herself over pretty well, always stopping on her side before finishing the roll.  She works so hard to sit up, and does a pretty impressive back bend to catch interesting noises behind her (especially Jack and TV).IMG_4922

What does she think of Jack?  She thinks he’s pretty funny, and likes following him around the room with her eyes and smiles.  We watched him play basketball over the weekend and she was very happy to sit in my lap cheering.IMG_4968

At four months, Audrey is seeming much more like a baby rather than a newborn.  We packed away most of her 3-6 month clothing and she is mostly wearing 6-9 month clothes.  We don’t have a doctor appointment for another week so I’m not sure about her stats but she is growing like a weed. And just look at all of that hair!  2015021795135237

I am enjoying all of her cuddles and smiles.  Yesterday she woke up at 4 (after 8.5 hrs of sleep!) and then again at 7.  I was productive from 4-7 with research and the gym.  But when she fell asleep nursing at 7, I enjoyed rocking her for a beautiful, slow 45 minutes.  (Thanks to a wonderful husband who got up with Jack!).

Happy 4 Months, my sweet little girl!IMG_4929


Mexican salad jars and this week’s workouts

It is a beautiful sunny day out…and much too cold for me to brave it outside for a run.  Instead, I have spent lots of time today doing food and meal prep (with my helper, Jack).  The best part of food for the week?  Salad jars, of course!  This one has a bottom layer of roasted red onions, red peppers, and cherry tomatoes.  Second layer is browned beef – top layer is tons of spinach.  After pouring it in a bowl I topped mine with diced avocado, green onion, and cilantro.  Delicious!!

Mexican Salad JarMonday:  “Chipper”
70 sit-ups
60 kettlebell swings
50 box jumps
400 m run
30 ball slams
20 thrusters
10 handstand push-ups (and they were not pretty)

Tuesday:  Taught cycle

Wednesday:  “Tabata This.”  A nice tabata workout that I didn’t have to think about past setting my tabata timer on my phone.  Tabata row, Tabata squat, Tabata (assisted) pull-ups, Tabata push-ups, Tabata sit-ups.  (plus a bonus of Tabata kettlebell swings and Tabata rows)

Thursday:  Row 2 miles and taught TRX

Friday:  Taught cycle

Saturday:  Corecamp with Donnie

 Have a great week!

POUND fitness demo & last week’s workouts

Sunday my gym, Parkwest Fitness, hosted a POUND fitness demo.  I was really looking forward to going so I ran out of the house as soon as one of the two kiddos was down for a nap.  The class was packed!1614563_669128469875746_147359265665074689_o

I’d never taken a POUND class although a friend brought it to Kansas City right around the time we moved.  It seems to be VERY popular there (probably because Jodie is so much fun!).  This 45 minute workout used slightly weighted, slightly longer drumsticks.  You are constantly drumming throughout the workout and I loved that the drumming to the floor during squats made me think about staying low for each one.  I have no idea how many squats we did, but it seemed to go super fast.  The ab tracks were really fun too, and forced me to work a little harder than I would have on my own.  And as expected the music was great – and really varied.  10917906_669128299875763_1358467985954218819_o

I don’t see this taking the place of my beloved cycle or TRX but it would be really fun to add to the weekly rotation.  Thinking about the class made me recall a conversation I had with a friend from my grad program about Zumba.  She was asking if I thought it was a good workout.  I told her I don’t really go to any Zumba classes but if she got her heart rate up and ENJOYED it then it was worth it.  You are much more likely to stick to fitness activities you enjoy.  If you’re in the Lafayette area, POUND is going to offered every Saturday morning at my gym.

The rest of the week was a little more of my usual workouts.

Monday:  rest day

Tuesday:  morning –  2 mile run followed by “Jeremy” – 3 rounds (21, 15, 9) of overhead squats and burpees.  Rx for the overhead squats was 65 pounds but I had to drop it down pretty early in the workout.  evening – Taught cycle to a wild group of 11.  :)

Wednesday:  (unintentional) rest day

Thursday:  Row 2000 m and taught TRX.  We had a great class, in my humble opinion.  Here was the 45 minute lineup:

TRX double hop running start
TRX 3 way row (palms up, down and together)
TRX chest press with tricep press
TRX Squat and V Fly
7 minutes of partner work.  Partner 1 row 250 m while the other partner does TRX spidermans and switch
TRXTRX Curtsey Lunge, and Curtsey to Lateral Lunge
TRX aligator flys
TRX step back lunges
TRX Reverse Mountain Climbers
TRX glut bridges with single leg extension
TRX crunch and bicep curl
TRX Plank series

Friday:  Taught cycle to a different group of 11 people

Saturday:  Corecamp with Donnie

TRX-ers – what are your favorite exercises on the bands?  Have a great week

Love yourself, Move yourself

Good evening!  Are you in the middle of watching the Superbowl?  We paused it to put the kids together so Matt and I still are in the first half of the game.  We can’t fast-forward (don’t want to miss the commercials!) so it might be a late night.

Before I get into last week’s workouts I wanted to share something from my friend, Lindsay’s blog:


She posted this last week, and I shared it with my classes and asked her for permission to share it with all of you.  I have found it so motivating.  I am very grateful that I am able to move my body and am able to eat wonderful foods.  And I think we could all learn to cultivate our inner language to be more loving to ourselves.  Beautiful, right?

In continuing to move like I love myself, here were the weeks workouts.

Sunday:  Yoga at M Power Yoga.  Wonderful, slightly heated practice on a snowy afternoon.  It felt SO good.

Monday:  Crossfit “Jack.”  I flipped open my book of workouts to this one randomly.  And my shoulders were sore for 2 days.  Jack – as many rounds as possible in 20 minutes of:  10 push presses, 10 kettlebell swings, 10 box jumps.

Tuesday:  I was traveling so I didn’t get to teach my normal class (boo!) but got in a quick 30 minute P90X yoga-like video.

Wednesday:  RPM (cycle class) taught by my friend, Melissa.  I love her energy and rarely get to take her classes.  It was a treat!

Thursday:  2000m row and TRX

Friday:  Taught cycle

Saturday:  rest day

Weekly Workouts + Favorite Tool

Another week has come and gone, and it was a good one on the fitness front.

Monday:  P90X “Eccentric Upper.”  Time under tension strength training for upper body.

Tuesday:  Taught Tuesday night spinning.

Wednesday:  P90X “Eccentric Lower.” Time under tension strength training for upper body.

Thursday:  What a treat!  Audrey slept great so I was up at 4:30 to feed and hit the gym for a quick mile on the treadmill and then went to Booty Barre.  The instructor is so energetic and it started my day off great.  Later in the day I taught TRX and got to jump in for most of the workout.

Friday:  Taught Friday 6am spinning.

Saturday:  Saturdays seem to be a good day for me to get a super efficient and tough workout.  But I try to get these workouts in while the kiddos are napping so I have to be quick to decide what to do.  I made this little index workout notebook while I was traveling for work and wanted to have some of my favorites at my fingertips.  I flipped to the Crossfit workout, Helen, and knew it would be a good one (3 rounds for time:  run 400 m, 21 Kettlebell swings, 12 assisted pull-ups) followed by tabata kettlebell swings and tabata v-ups/bicycle crunches.  photo (14)

What tips tools do you have to keep your favorite workouts accessible?

What I Ate Wednesday (Roasted Veggie Salad Jar)

I like food. I like food a lot. And I like seeing what other people eat.  Here’s a peek into my Wednesday eats courtesy of my phone photos.

Breakfastphoto (13)
Steel cut oats (made in my handy rice cooker) with some blueberries and walnuts
Coffee.  I make my own half-caf mix from The Roasterie’s Betty’s Recipe.  The use Swiss Water Process to make their deccaf which makes me feel better about drinking decaf without lots of chemicals.


Lunchphoto (12)
Fabulous Jar Salad! The bottom is about 2 tablespoons of a homemade balsamic vinaigrette, followed by a layer of roasted brussels sprouts and roasted cauliflower.  Next layer is diced, roasted chicken.  Topped off with lots of yummy spinach and a sprinkling of grated sharp cheddar cheese.

I made a bunch of these up on Sunday and they are seriously great throughout the week.  To roast the veggies – preheat your oven to 400 and toss the veggies with olive oil, salt and pepper and roast for 40 minutes – 1 hour, stirring every 20 minutes or so.  And shredding your own cheese results in stickier cheese but is SO delicious!

Latte (honey and cinnamon at the bottom of the cup – my favorite!) in a research group meeting
A handful of trail mix at another meeting

Leftover Italian beef sandwiches on an onion roll, carrots and red pepper slices with hummus.
Followed by some herbal tea — Candycane Lane — my favorite!

Earlier in the week, Jack and I made some muffins.  He calls all muffins, “muffin man.” Kills me every time.  Although I didn’t have any today, I thought about this funny little boy and laughed to myself at my computer.  Jack Muffin Man

Delicious food today!  What was the best thing you ate today?