Just Jump In…

I have had my wedding dress for just over a month.  When I purchased it, I said to myself…”Ok Joanna, it’s time now, time to stop making excuses, time to take accountability for your diet.”

I still haven’t.  Until this morning that is!

I don’t know why, but I have this weird mentality that I must eat all my favorite foods in preparation for this because I know I wont be eating them for quite some time. I know it will be a daily battle for me, as I have a love affair with food.  So my weekend was filled with chocolate, and pizza, and Maui onion chips, and I snuck in a Wendy’s chicken sandwich in there two days ago as well, as well as a couple milky way bars and some french fries.

I’m telling you this so I can basically make myself accountable.  I don’t want to write down all the crap that I eat, it’s flipping embarrassing! But the truth of the matter is, I have lost one month of weight loss and better eating habits, when I could have been much further down the road had I not been lazy.  I’m meeting my in-laws in a month, I have a wedding dress that I want altered smaller for next July, and our first wedding is in 2.5 weeks.  Plus, my soon to be husband is leaving in 1.5 months and I wont see him for about 6 weeks after that, so I want to look like an even hotter piece of ass when I get off the plane in Kansas City. Hey, us newlyweds will have to make up for lost time! hehe

I hate watching what I eat, it upsets me to be honest.  I want to be able to eat good delicious junk food, but I can’t anymore…or at least all the time.  So that means today I am starting again…a modified version of the Fat Smash Diet.  I hesitate to call it a diet, but that is the official name of it.  I have done it before with success, and I really want to stick with it.  But I won’t be doing it as extreme as the book calls for, and yes, I still will be enjoying that pot roast I’m making for dinner tomorrow night, and me and the Mr.’s one year anniversary dinner on Sunday as well.  I’ll still enjoy yummy food when we’re in California, and then for Thanksgiving, and Christmas.  But I just have to be more mindful of what I put into my mouth.  The good thing about the fat smash diet is that I lose weight easily on it if I stick to the program, and I want to drop a few pounds before our wedding this month anyway, just to make me feel better in my cocktail dress.  I know the Mr loves me for who I am, and proposed to ME, but I want to be a better version of me.

My advice for myself is…Just Jump In.  I’m not going to get anywhere if I don’t do that, I will keep making excuses.

Muffins That Make You Poop

*This was supposed to be posted TODAY, but wordpress screwed up my blog post order.  So if you’ve already read this, just ignore this post.  Or read again about poop inducing muffins!

Ok, I really couldn’t think of any other way to write that.  My witty brain must be on vacation today.  Anyway, I grew up eating these bran muffins, my mom would always make a huge batch and keep the batter in the fridge for when we wanted fresh ones. I whipped up  a batch on Sunday so we would have some for this week.  I bastardized the recipe though, and made it my own as I kind of forgot to buy some of the ingredients when we were at the commissary.  They are chock full of good fiber, even more so if you use ground flax-seed in it like I did.  And…TMI here, but they helped clear up one of my kids who was stopped up. HaHa!

Here you go!

Easy Peasy Bran Muffins

Step One:

In a med size bowl, mix together:
2 cups boiling water
3 cups of raisins (her recipe calls for 2, we liked more)
2 cups of ” ALL BRAN ” cereal

set this aside

Step Two

In a large bowl, mix:

3 cups of white or brown sugar
1 stick of softened, room temp, butter
1/2 cup vegetable oil
4 eggs
1/c cup molasses
4 cups buttermilk (if you dont have buttermilk, add 1tbs white vinegar per every one cup milk)

mix it up really well and set aside again.

Step 3

In an even bigger bowl (make sure it will fit in your fridge first), I used a huge one, mix the following ingredients:

5 1/4 cup flour, wheat or white. Doesn’t matter (I used whole wheat flour)
3tbsp baking soda
2 tsp salt
4 cups “NATURAL BRAN” (my mom says this is by the flour in the grocery section, I couldn’t find it. I looked all over, and had no luck. It is supposed to be “powdery”. But since I couldn’t find it, I used “QUAKER OAT BRAN”, in a little red box that was with the baking stuff. It is similar enough, and worked for us.  Ok…just adding one more thing, I actually didnt have either of those this time, so I used ground flax seed! Success!

mix all the dry ingredients together in your huge bowl, then add Step Two ingredients and mix well. Lastly, add Step One ingredients and mix with a mixer. You should use a mixer when you add step 2 and step one actually. Please make sure you used a big enough bowl, because this recipe yields a TON, and I mean a TON, of dough.

Now that all of your ingredients are mixed up in a bowl, put it in the fridge overnight. You don’t have to, but it helps the dough set better. In the morning, the dough will be very thick, this is normal. You’ll probably have to use a spoon to scoop it into the muffin pan like I did.

In the morning, preheat your oven to about 375 and get out your muffin pan. Line it with paper cupcake/muffin papers and fill each one about 3/4s full. Bake for about 20-25 minutes. I originally started at 350, but 20 minutes in and they were still doughy. So experiment a little and see what your oven needs. 375 did it for us.

I only do 12 at a time, and we enjoy them when they’re warm still with a bit of softened butter. Mmmm Yummy!!

This recipe actually keeps for 6 weeks in the fridge! So you can make fresh bran muffins every morning without having to worry about all the prep!

I really don’t know why the font and sizes came out all wonky, but anyway…enjoy! you could probably add some nuts and other fruit if you wanted.  Chopped up dates or cranberries instead of raisins, whatever you want really. These muffins are delicious!

The Dark Side Of Motherhood

Despite all the bullshit I’ve been through the last two and a half years, today I learned something that made my heart literally stop.

My friend’s daughter has pneumonia.

To the normal person it might seem like not much of a big deal, but that…coupled with the fact that my oldest daughter has been feeling like poopy the last couple days, plus having very labored breathing, made me really worried (plus all our kids play together).  I was paranoid she had pneumonia, and when I found out this morning about our friend, I wanted to run and run and run away from my bad memories.

When Barry died, I had a major fight of flight adrenaline rush, and I had that this morning too.  I just wanted to run away from all my bad feelings because I was too scared to face them. But I had to take care of my daughter, who stayed home from school today.  One of the three causes of death for my husband was  “Bi-lateral multilobar Pneumonia” (the other two being cardio respiratory arrest and a blood clot).  All caused by H1N1.  He was the hospitals sickest patient the entire time he was there.

All I could think about while I was getting ready to take her to the doctor was deep, dark stuff, that a mother often thinks about, but rarely share with the general public or anyone for that matter, because we are worried about being labeled a crazy lady.  I wondered about her funeral, how I would fall apart and never be able to be normal again.  I wondered if her absentee grandfather would show up, and how I would finally get to yell at him and say my piece about how horribly he would treat us.  I wondered about counseling.  I wondered where I would hold the funeral, and who would come.

Yes, I went there.  I was that scared this morning, and had to force myself to not think about it.  I had so much adrenaline that when I went on my elliptical, I was holding an RPM of almost 70 the entire time I was on there.  I never go that fast, I just had to do it and get my energy out.  I know all mothers fear their children dying, and I hope I never ever have to go through that, because I don’t know how I could possibly deal with that after losing my husband as well.  I was so scared this morning.

When we got to the doctor, they said it was not pneumonia (thank you!!!), but something else they weren’t sure of, so they wanted to do some tests.  And guess what she tested positive for?

The flu.

Again, not a big deal to any “normal” person, but the flu and pneumonia are what landed Barry in the hospital.  They are what killed him.  In many ways the flu is worse for me than pneumonia, and especially so because we’ve all been vaccinated every year since then.  But this year her vaccine failed.  And now all 5 of us, me included, are being put on Tamiflu because of our family history.

Now that we have tamiflu, I’m not as scared because I know she’ll get better.  She won’t die yet, and hopefully not until she’s an old lady in her 90s who has lived a very full life.  It’s amazing how just one word…pneumonia in my example, can elicit such a strong reaction in us and make us think of the worst.

When the other kids get home from school, I get to run all over town to two different pharmacies picking up five different prescriptions for tamiflu, lots of crackers, 7-up, and whatever else a sick kid needs.

If something like this happens to you, what do you do, and how do you bring yourself out of that dark corner?

Happy Mothers Day to Me!