Tuesday, September 27, 2016

BBQ Chicken Pizza

So, I wanted to share one my favorite dinners because...

1) It's delicious

2) It's super easy to make


3) It's 21 Day Fix Approved - which I'm all for!

I have a thing for finding healthy recipes that make me feel like I'm cheating on my healthy eating plan - and this one does just the trick. I stumbled upon a BBQ chicken pizza one day on Pinterest and instantly craved BBQ and Pizza - pretty much the two greatest edible gifts to the entire world. I wanted to recreate it, but a healthy-fied version.

Most store bought BBQ sauces are full of sugar, which is not 21 Day Fix approved I'm sad to say. So I needed to do some research and find a clean BBQ sauce I could make from scratch at home. Here's a list of 21 Day Fix BBQ Sauces, and you can just try and test out what you like. :) I have made a pretty basic BBQ sauce before when I've had time. But I will admit - I am guilty of finding store bought sauces occasionally that are low in sugar so I don't feel as guilty - but technically they wouldn't be on the 21 Day Fix approved list. So if you want to stick to approved foods only, definitely go with a homemade version - low in sugar or no sugar at all. If you aren't into the whole healthy BBQ sauce thing, do as you wish, and pick away at the grocery store - I won't judge. :)

Organic Annie's Original BBQ Sauce - 4 grams of sugar
pretty good store bought option

So here's how I make it - nothing fancy y'all.

BBQ Chicken Pizza

6-inch Whole Wheat Tortilla
BBQ Sauce
Mozzarella Cheese
BBQ Chicken

1. I cook my chicken in the crockpot - I place 3 or 4 chicken breasts in there and cover them with a BBQ sauce, let it cook on low for 8 hours. You could also shred a rotisserie chicken to keep it simple.

3. Once your chicken is cooked, preheat oven to 400 degrees and shred the chicken outside of the crockpot (I do this so it doesn't soak up anymore BBQ sauce and add to my container count).

4. Place a tortilla on a baking sheet sprayed with olive oil. Pour desired amount of BBQ sauce onto whole wheat tortilla (I use an orange container to measure if you're participating in the 21 Day Fix eating plan).

5. Add chicken to the tortilla (I use one red container) and sprinkle cheese on top (one blue container).

5. Bake in oven for 8-12 minutes - depending on how crispy you like it and how powerful your oven is. :)

Container Count
1 Yellow (6-inch whole wheat tortilla) 1 Red (shredded chicken) 1 Orange (homemade BBQ sauce) 1 Blue (shredded mozzarella cheese)

You could add onion, peppers, or even pineapple to get some green or purple containers in there. I like to eat this with a side salad or baked broccoli (some kind of veggie) to make sure I get all my containers eaten through the day!

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Tuesday, September 20, 2016

How to Meal Prep With Your Kids (And NOT Lose Your Mind)

So, I'm pretty sure the number one thing people find most difficult when they begin meal prepping is the time it takes to actually meal prep. Throw in a kid (or two...or three) and it almost becomes your worst nightmare. Now, I don't have much experience with meal prepping and wrangling two (or three) kids, considering I just have my one. And lucky for me, she's pretty stationary...for now. 
(don't worry, my days are numbered

But since I have started meal prepping now that I'm working on my fitness, I've had to learn how to juggle meal prepping and taming an UNRULY (just kidding) nine month old. So if these tips have helped me with the process, I may as well share the wealth in hopes that someone out there with an unruly nine month old (or two...or three) can maybe take just one trick away and tuck it up under their sleeve to keep until their next meal prep day.

So with that being said - here are five things that have totally helped me tame the beast, I mean baby, while I take on meal prepping. :)

#1 - Get Them Involved

So, Harper quickly taught that me sitting her in her walker beside me in the kitchen for two hours while I meal prepped was a seriously foolish plan that only a first time mother would actually attempt. You see, my baby wants to be in my business (and probably yours too if you let her), so the idea of her just watching me or you know, actually playing with her toys, was dumb. So, she won. And I decided to sit her tiny hiny up on the counter with me in her little chair, so she could not only see directly what I was doing, but could also interact with me.

As I'm cutting things, cooking meals, mixing, etc. I talk to her and I tell her what I'm doing. The girl has no idea what I'm saying, but she loves the interaction. Toys? Who needs toys? Not Harper. Spatula? Wooden spoon? Measuring Cup? That's where the fun is at. And where ever the fun is, that's where Harper wants to be. Letting her hold unbreakable, plastic, non-life threatening, kitchen utensils solves many of my problems for the majority of my prep time. In between our kitchen conversations, and utensil holding, I try and let her experiment with different textures of fruits and veggies. She doesn't really eat them as much as she she holds them in her hands and squishes them in between her fingers. Whatever works for ya.

You can decide how you want to get your kids involved depending on their age. 
I promise, they'll probably love it more than you realize. 

#2 - Break It Up

In case you didn't hear me say it - MEAL PREPPING TAKES A LONG TIME.
Time that most of us struggle to find, am I right?
A lot of the time, I have to break up my meal prepping through the day. This past Sunday, I meal prepped my snacks and part of my breakfast, and then we spent the day together having family time - which was so needed and so important to keep a priority. When we came back home, I finished up my lunches, and prepared a little bit of our dinners for the week. And it worked out just fine. Family time is a priority for us, but so is meal prepping. You just have to find the right balance!

#3 - Schedule It

I'm pretty sure you've figured out by now that your baby or kid rules the roost. The days of doing what you want to do when you want are looooong gone. (goodbye good old days...) But their squishy little cheeks and leg rolls completely make up for any personal time lost. Even though your schedule is a little different than before kids took over your life, you still need to find the time to do this for yourself. You'll thank yourself and feel so relieved knowing you're prepared for the week ahead - not to mention, you'll actually love the extra family time you get during the week not having to worry so much about food.

So with that being said, schedule your meal prep.
Decide on a time when you know you are going to commit to it. Do it for yourself. Taking care of yourself is still important you know - even though it gets lost sometimes. I try and meal prep during naps for example. I know she's probably going to take a morning nap, so that's a good time for me to try and knock some of it out. Do what works best for you. You'll be so thankful you did.

#4 - Ask For Help

Put those baby daddies to work!
Just kidding.
But really. A lot of times, my husband is a complete rockstar, and takes care of Harper completely while I'm knocking out meal prepping. Harper loves the time with Daddy, and I know he loves it just as much, if not more. It's so helpful, and actually allows me to get it done a lot quicker.

You know who else is good for this... THE GRANDPARENTS! :)

And my FAVORITE tip...


As if meal prepping wasn't already thrilling enough... ;)
Karaoke, dance parties, cowboy hat wearing - we make it fun as a family, and seriously, it makes all the difference! I hate taking time away from Harper to do anything, especially since our time together is so limited with me working. So, if I can be productive, while bonding and creating memories with my little family, then I'll certainly be okay with that.

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Monday, September 19, 2016

Harper | Eight Months

Considering you're now nine months - I should get this posted out!

Life has been super busy Harper girl!
Month eight was one for the record books.
We pressed out with our new routine - daycare and mama back to work.
You're such a 'go with the flow' type baby now, and it's so fun taking you places now. You really soak everything up. You make our lives so much brighter!

Nicknames: Harpie, Harpie Bug, Harps

Weight: About 21 pounds - you seemed to have stopped putting on weight, and are just starting to grow into a big girl!

Height: 26 inches maybe - find out at next appointment!

Looks: The cutest baby in the whole world according to mommy and daddy! :) You look more and more like a big girl everyday! Your hair is getting so much longer, but it's still blonde. Your eyes are blue for now. I absolutely love your chubby legs and your cute little belly!

Personality: A little ham! You're so social, already making friends at daycare. You're SO happy, majority of the time. You know you're funny, and you love making us laugh! You have such a sweet little personality, I hope it never changes!

Eating: Not really interested in formula when your poor little teeth were coming in. Pureed food is still what we're going with for now. You're not quite ready to feed yourself just yet, and we've tried a few big people foods, and you don't quite get it yet. We're getting better at puffs!

Sleeping: Sleeping pretty good most nights! Some nights you're up a few times, but normally just once. You need a little comfort to go back to sleep, and then you're good. You're waking up super early though...about 5:30am.

Wearing: 6-9 month clothes for now! Some 3-6 month shirts will fit...It's those chubby thighs that keep us mostly with 6-9 month sizes.

Favorite Things: Water! BAE - Aunt Whitney, clapping, daycare - you love kids your age and even big kids, your water table

Least Favorite Things: TEETH! I mean, I honestly can't blame you little girl. It looks pretty painful...

Within the last month:
  • You went swimming with BAE at her apartment pool and loved it!
  • You had an eye doctor appointment, they dilated your eyes, and everything checked out perfect!
  • We started taking big girl baths - but then you leaned forward to far, and that was the end of that for awhile...
  • We took a trip to visit Poppie's grave. He loved you so much and still does!
  • We had a girls day with MiMi and BAE - shopping, cupcakes, lunch - and you completely rocked it! 
  • You learned how to clap! And was so proud of yourself!
  • You started daycare - and cried way less tears than mommy.
  • You had a rough first two weeks at daycare, but since then, you love it so much and get so excited to go every day!
  • You went to Alabama for Luke's birthday party! 
  • You've become a pro at riding in the buggie at the store
  • We played in your water table a lot of evenings, and you just chilled most of the time...
  • We celebrated Nannie's 90th birthday!
  • We got two teeth this month!

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Tuesday, September 13, 2016

Transformation Tuesday | 21 Day Fix | Two Rounds

So. How terrifying is this.
When I first took the picture down below on July 24th, I thought there was NO WAY I'd ever show these pictures to anybody! EVER. You couldn't make me.

My coach recommended I take 'before' pictures before I started my first round of 21 Day Fix. Sometimes your body will show progress, and not the scale.
Scales are evil in that way.
So, I obliged. 

And then here we are.
Terrified that I am even showing the world the picture on left, and still a little scared to show my most current photo on the right. I'd be lying if I said I wasn't damn proud of my progress.
Because I am. But through the progress, I still see things I want to change, and goals I still want to achieve. And lets face it - it's just plain scary putting yourself out here like this.

So why do it?
Because I needed somebody to show me the possibilities, like my coach did for me.
And I hope I can be that person or coach for somebody else.
To break through the seemingly impossible.
Because that's how I felt in the picture on the left.
Like this was going to be impossible.

But look.
It wasn't impossible.
I survived not only one round of 21 Day Fix, but two.
And that's what the pictures above show.

So here's a little breakdown of my experience with 21 Day Fix:

*Side note: I worked out all summer (way longer than 42 days!!!) And lost only 2 pounds. 

2 Rounds | 42 Days | 21 Day Fix

Total Weight Lost: 10 pounds

Total Inches Lost: 8 inches

>> Prior to 21 Day Fix <<

Feeling: Defeated, self-conscious, bloated, unhappy

Eating: Eating "healthy" so I thought - more carbs than I realized and even too much of those "good fats," craving sweets A LOT

Exercise: Walking during the week, workout program from my computer

Clothing: Wearing a size large in shirts, not many of my clothes fit, and I didn't want to buy new larger sized clothes. Kinda in denial.

>> After 2 Rounds of 21 Day Fix <<

Feeling: More confident, happy, excited for the future, healthy

Eating: Following the 21 Day Fix meal plans - eating more proteins and vegetables - eating carbs still and good fats, but in moderation. I never feel like I'm missing out on yummy food, and rarely crave unhealthy junk food

Exercise: Completed a 30 minute workout every day for 42 days - some days it was at 5am and some days it was at 10pm. But I got it done.

Clothing: Slowly getting back into my pre-pregnancy clothes. Still have a ways to go for some, but baby steps!

Worst Moment During 21 Days (2 Rounds): I cried after my first workout. I thought there was no way I would be able to do this. I almost passed out, could hardly catch my breath. It was a sight to be seen.

Best Moment During My 21 Days (2 Rounds): Just plain feeling healthy. Waking up not feeling bloated. Feeling my clothes get looser and looser each week. And of course - watching the scale drop - even though I've learned that that's not the most important thing!

Most Challenging Moment: Turning down eating out during my first week of 21 Day Fix / first week of teacher pre-planning. I literally turned down food for 5 days straight. In the past, I would have so given in because everybody else was. Although it was the most challenging, I proved to myself what I was capable of.

What I've Learned: Meal prepping - KEY TO SUCCESS!
Drinking Shakeology was the best decision I've made in this journey - no more stomach aches, clearer skin, feeling full longer, no more unhealthy cravings. You're able to eat way more than you realize!

Where Do I Go From Here: I started my next program - 22 Minute Hard Corps. It's hard, but I'm loving it! I also have become a coach! I'm trying to help others see their possibilities and feel great about themselves like I have.


Y'all. This program is totally doable.
I never thought of myself as very fit or healthy. 
I always told myself I loved food way too much to be a fit person.
But I still love food, I'm eating yummy food, and not feeling guilty.
I've learned self-control - which was literally, my biggest weakness.
It's unreal what this has done for me.
And it could easily be done for you too!

If you want more information about this, or have questions, I'd love to talk with you!

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Sunday, September 11, 2016

Challenge: Love Your Body

Bathing suit shopping can really put things into perspective for ya if you aren't careful!
Grab the wrong size, pick the wrong style, or for me - put one on at all!
That's how I felt two months ago.
Bathing suit shopping was a cruel punishment.
But punishment for what?

Punishment for not taking care of myself?
I knew in my heart that I wasn't being healthy. I knew I wasn't exercising like I should. I wasn't watching what I was putting into my body. I was still holding on the baby weight months after the actual baby was born. And it was definitely showing.
But I'm not talking showing physically.
It was showing through my lack of self-confidence.

Towards the end of July, I began watching what I ate as many of you know by now. I began exercising. I began truly taking care of myself. 
And then I began to show...self-confidence.

I have a long way to go in my health and fitness journey.
For me, this is a lifestyle I want to uphold my not only me, but for my family.
Especially for my daughter.

I've found that the more I take care of myself, the more I exercise, the more control I have over what I eat, the more I love my body. The more I appreciate my body. Even though I have a long way to go to where I want to be. It's easier to see past my seemingly "flaws" and appreciate the beauty my body has to offer. (Kinda weird saying "beauty" and "my body" in the same sentence! But it's something I want to get used to!)

So. What do I love about my body?
I love the fact that my body created this perfect little human being, and I have the marks to show for it. I love how strong my legs are for my workouts. I love my arms that let me squeeze my family tight. 

Now I challenge you...
What do you love about your body?

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