Protein Pancakes

Okay, I wanted to share these because one, who doesn’t like pancakes? Two, my daughter is the world’s pickiest eater and protein is what I am always worried about getting packed into her. These amazing flapjacks, are packed with protein and they taste good, so you are getting the feeling of eating bad but yet it is good. Of course don’t overload with syrup! I buy all natural syrup and I put it off to the side for my kids so they can dip the pancake in the syrup, and as for me, I will put a tablespoon (at most) and addd in strawberries and blueberries. Remember protein is your body’s powerhouse. This is the main reason I am sharing this with you, my daughter as I said is a picky eater, she doesn’t enjoy most “normal” kid foods like mac and cheese, spaghetti, hamburgers and hot dogs…nope! She would live off of peanut butter and honey if I let her, and the only source of vegetables she gets, is when I hide them in the smoothies I make her or my homemade protein balls. So whenever I find something that is good and contains higher amounts of protein I get super excited! She practically has a part time job with gymnastics, practicing about 13 1/2 hours per week, and for an 8 year old thats pretty good, plus at home she still does normal kid things, and of course still practices around the house, so because she doesn’t really eat any source of meat (unless you count Chic-Fil-A nuggets) I am always in search of these kinds of finds! I get my box at Costco. Try them out and let me know what you think. They also make amazing muffins! They have tons of recipes on their website for some more amazing treats.


Try this circuit at least 3x a week, then move up to 5x a week. Start off by doing each move once and then moving directly to the next movement, once you have finished all six movements, do each move 2x, then 3x…all the way up to 5x, once you have completed each move 5x in a row, start counting back down to 1. So for example do one burpee, one set of lunges (one per leg), one set of plank hand taps to plank jacks, one plie squat, one RDL, and then one push-up. Once done immediately start over and do each move 2x and continue until you reach 5, then make your way down. The key is to try to rest as little as possible or not at all. Try to get through each movement all the way through without breaking. Of course if you have to, take a quick break and continue. Once you have mastered the 1 through 5 and 5 back to 1, try adding repetitions, count to 8 and then back down, add a few reps as the weeks progress. This is a short circuit especially if you make it all the way through with no rest, it will only take a short bit of your time and can be done anywhere. NO EXCUSES you got this!
Burpee- standing with feet shoulder width apart, squat down resting hands beside your feet, jump your feet back so you are in a push-up (plank) position, then jump your feet back to your hands and return to standing. To modify, squat down, and instead of jumping feet back, step one foot at a time back until in plank and then step one foot at a time back to your hands and then stand. To advance the movement, do a push-up once you are in a plank, and then after you jump your feet to your hands jump up into a tuck jump, bringing your knees up as high as you can when you jump.
Reverse lunge- place hands on your hips, feet shoulder width apart and step your right foot back to make a right angle, making sure your knee is not over your toes on your left leg, bring your foot back and repeat with the left leg, this is one rep. If you need to support yourself, gently hold the wall or a chair. To advance the move, after you lunge, as your bringing your leg up, crunch and bring your opposite leg to your opposite elbow.
Plank taps/jacks- get in plank position, lift your right hand and tap it to your left hand then repeat with left hand, after that jump your feet together and then immediately wide apart, that is one rep. If you need to modify, just hold the plank position for 10 seconds.
Plie Squat- Stand legs wide apart and toes turned out, squat down keeping back straight. To modify hold a chair, to advance the movement, as your coming up from your squat kick your leg out to the side and then kick the opposite leg out to the side.
Romanian Dead Lifts- Stand straight, legs shoulder width apart, knees slightly bend, hinge at the hips, keeping back straight. To advance hold weights or do one leg at a time, each time lift a leg as you hing forward.
Push-Ups- In plank position bend your arms until your chest and face are hovering about a half inch from the floor and then push back up. If you want alternate from narrow to wide push-ups.
Make sure when doing each move that you are engaging your core to protect your back, and that you keep your back nice and straight. And remember you got this! Don’t give up, your body can do way more than what your mind tells it!



Unknown Volunteer

Starting my morning off a very tired Mama! The 4th night in a row my husband has shaken me awake in his sleep, mumbling some sort of mumbo jumbo, and then peacefully nods back off to dream land. Next time I am waking him up to stay up until I fall back asleep! As for me I lay and stare blankly in the dark abyss. Why does it take me so long to fall back asleep? Then of course I start thinking about everything I need to get done tomorrow…er today (its 2 in the morning). I need to do Laundry, get the bathrooms clean as well as the rest of the house. Homeschool of course, when the kids wake. I need to get some art projects done for the littles for my homeschool art class I teach for Co-Op…oh yes of course, then I have to play flag football for my husband’s co-ed work team that he so graciously volunteered me to do *insert eye roll*. I could kill him! Thanks for having faith in me honey, I will give you that! Next time ask before you tell them yes! LOL This should be fun, I laugh while I am laying there, still staring into the black blanket of the night. Hmmm maybe I should pull my powder prank out again, it has been a while since I pranked my husband, and he did scare the crap out of me the other day…I almost peed myself, but I did manage to block my face and swing at him protecting myself. Ha! Arse. Lol that last time I powder pranked him, the prank lasted a week! I lifted his pillow case, shook some powder on his pillow and placed the pillow case back down. I was dying inside as I watched him get ready for bed (keep it together Erica, I kept saying). He is finally ready and comes to lay down and POOF! Huge cloud of powder. Lol I laughed probably for 30 minutes straight. This happened every time he laid down, for about a week. Job well done! Lol. Its now 2:45 in the morning! Ugh, I try to clear my  mind, pretend I am on a beautiful beach laying in a hammock listening to the waves….not working I am wide awake! I put piano guys on my pandora and listen as they soothe me to sleep…then wham a kick to my jugular! Damn! Hello Wyatt. My three year old has joined me to sleep, and I am groggy and more tired than ever, it feels like I have been sleeping for maybe ten minutes. I don’t think coffee is going to keep me going today! All I can think of is this football game I am being volunteered to play and how I am probably going to look like a person with narcolepsy. Sleeping beauty Erica, running with the ball then BAM face plants in the mud, fast asleep lol. The thought is actually kind of appealing, any kind of sleep is =)

Second Helpings

Today at church some kids got to have their first communion. My mind took me back to earlier this summer when my daughter got hers. What an amazing blessing and experience, I sobbed that day too. Barley being able to control my breathing, I mean full out ugly cry…Anyway, I’m lost in memories as we are walking to the bread and blood of Christ, Madison in front of me, she takes the bread and goes on for the wine. Well I look and she is getting bread again! I’m like what on earth is she doing, so I grab her and I’m like why are you taking the body of Christ again? She says it was an accident and she was trying to find the wine. So I go to grab her hand and she is like “Mom I must find the wine!” Leave it to my 8 year old to enjoy the taste of red wine (a little too much) lol I’m at a loss for words and it brings me back to another time not too long ago when Wyatt, my three old stuck his whole little fist into the chalice! I’ll never forget that poor lady who was serving the wine! I apologized a million times and even questioned just taking him and running out of the church! I have not seen that lady since! Why is it always my children?!?!

Carpe Diem

Any movement is better than no movement at all….obviously. Even if you can just squeeze in 15 minutes of activity a day, it is better than nothing. Anyone can spare 15 minutes a day. I do things when I am cooking, brushing my teeth, or washing my hands. I will do squats, lunges, calf raises, push-ups during commercial breaks or as soon as I wake up to get my body moving. You can use anything is your house, you don’t need equipment. I use my dining room table ( lay on the floor underneath it, grab the edges of the table, while keeping my body straight and my core engaged I pull myself up) to do rows. Any movement is great movement, taking the stairs instead of the elevator, walking your dog a little farther or longer, standing while you watch your kid(s) during an extracurricular activity, anything! One of my favorite workouts…..mowing my lawn! It engages every muscle in my body! I will challenge myself to see how fast I can get it done, or some days like today when it has been raining here in good ol’ Texas for the past couple weeks, it feels like I am pushing a 150lb sled through mud! My core, my back, my shoulders, my biceps, my glutes and legs, everything is totally engaged while I try to push through the thick, recently wet grass. When I am done, my body is on fire, I am dripping sweat and I have burned over 700 calories! And because my blower is broken, I had to sweep all my wet grass into a pile, talk about obliques on fire! Some activities that you may not think of as being exercise are. When I garden, my legs and abdominal always get worked out, and if I exaggerate any movement, it helps that much better. Just walking around with your core engaged can be beneficial. Make yourself conscious of these things, and do them everyday, just little changes everyday (10 squats each time you go to the bathroom, reverse lunges while you watch your show, calf raises and leg lifts while you are cooking..). Soon enough, it will be like brushing your teeth and you will feel more energized and refreshed! Start now, you are a beautiful person and are worthy of feeling refreshed and healthy. You are WORTHY of keeping up with your children, not being out of breath when you walk up the stairs, and you are WORTHY of being the best version of yourself! Off to church now, but I will be in touch with you tomorrow! Carpe Diem! Seize the day!

Protein is Key

Protein is a very important role in caring for your body. You need it to fuel your body and keep your muscles strong and healthy. If you are training to lose weight, or maintain your current weight, protein, protein, protein! I like to have at least one gram of protein per each gram of my weight per day. If I am working out and have been moving around all day, I up my protein a little bit. You don’t have to have a life of diets and starvation to become a healthy person. You also don’t need to deprive yourself, that is actually the worst thing you can do, because then you over indulge. There are plenty of options to switch out foods for ones that are very similar, for example white rice to brown, or if you want to get creative cauliflower. Whole milk to almond milk (I like the unsweetened vanilla). The main thing is to cut down your simple sugars and eat complex sugars. Complex sugars or carbohydrates are sugars that have a complex strain so that they enter the bloodstream at a slow rate. Also keeping you more full for a longer period of time and are great in fiber. Simple sugars enter your bloodstream very quickly and is what makes you gain weight. The key to maintaining a healthy lifestyle is to ease yourself as the days and weeks progress. Slowly start cutting out simple sugars (processed food), and make healthy switches. Once you get to where you want to be, each week reward yourself if you have been eyeing that piece of cake, don’t over indulge. I split all stuff like that with my husband so I am not tempted to eat it all, and if I get a big meal I put half aside so I don’t over eat. This morning I made my favorite protein shake for breakfast. It is super simple and quick and I make it when I am not in the mood for eggs, or oatmeal. I also will use it for a snack in-between meals. Remember protein, protein, protein!!! I always have at least 25g of protein in my shake, right now I am using MusclePharm cookies and cream protein powder. It is delish! Plus it has five different proteins mixed in so I get fast, medium, and slow releases of it. Today and the days I am going to be out and about, I add two scoops so I get 50g total. I put a half a cup of ice and 1 cup of almond milk ( it is important to measure! Most of us don’t look at the serving size, which is important, and we never add just a tablespoon of coffee creamer, or just a tablespoon of dressing, ketchup….and every gram of simple sugar counts! MEASURE!) if you are using whole or skim milk, just add a half of a cup to cut out the simple sugar. I put a tablespoon of sugar free syrup (sometimes I use natural peanut butter instead), I add in some fiber powder and a half of a banana and viola! It tastes so good it should be bad! I only add HALF of a banana! When eating fruits is important to eat them in their raw form, this way the fiber that is holding them together slows down the absorption of sugar. When you blend fruits, or even vegetables your are taking the process of chewing them out and then they enter the bloodstream very quickly! so even straight up fruit juice you made yourself is a no no! Eat them in their natural state, and steam vegetables or eat them raw. The softer they are, the more fiber and nutrients you drain from the vegetable. Make this shake for your mid morning snack later, or for breakfast tomorrow, you won’t believe how good it tastes!

The Missing Wallet

I wake up every morning and make my husband breakfast and lunch to take to work, this morning I was super speed because I knew he was running behind.*Pat on my back, take a bow I did pretty damn good!* He calls me into our room, freaking he cannot find his wallet; I suggest he check his shorts he wore last night, and he says he was doing that, but when he reached up in the closet to get the shorts he felt something hit his leg and swears it was his wallet. So I look down, now noticing my shoe boxes are scattered all over the place. So I get down on my hands and knees digging for this wallet (how it could have fell and buried itself, is beside me), as I am digging I am hoping that the bright light he turned on does not wake up our three year old who climbed into my bed at three this morning ( I really had my heart set on having a HOT cup of coffee and to watch one of my guilty pleasures before either of my kids wake up, but here I am)! As I am down there digging I tell him to check my car, maybe it fell out of his pocket when he was sitting (happens often), or to check the dining room table, but he insists it hit his knee! After about ten minutes of frantically looking, dripping sweat, no coffee…did I mention I have to pee! He disappears and I hear him yell that he found it on the dining room table! On the damn table!!! Thanks for my morning workout honey! All before  I have had coffee or food in me and a bladder about to burst. You can bet that I went back and forth about adding something extra to my coffee when I did have a chance to have it…is 7 a.m. too early to drink? It has to be okay somewhere right?
I know a lot of you have had mornings like these, now you laugh about them, but at the time you wanted give your husband a little smack upside the head, and maybe take the bottle of wine into the bathroom lol.