Monday, February 29, 2016

Cookies for a Cure

On Friday I told you that I was going to do an awesome fundraiser starting on Leap Day and here it is!!! I posted a little teaser on Facebook and Instagram yesterday of Wesley helping me bake the first batch of chocolate chip cookies!

In order to raise $4,600 and walk 120 miles in 2 Susan G. Komen for the Cure events, I decided to pair a few things that I love. Over the past few years, I've perfected my chocolate chip cookie recipe. I LOVE chocolate chip cookies and I love baking them for people. So I decided, for the month of March, I'll be baking cookies for a cure!

Here are the details:
  • For every $29 donation, you'll get a dozen chocolate chip cookies. (Arrange for pick-up or delivery for locals!)
  • I'll mail them anywhere in the country for a donation of $35 or more. 
  • This offer is good from February 29th-March 31st!
  • Donations must be made at to be eligible for cookies. 
  • You must make your donation first and then come back and fill out this form. I'll be in touch (watch your email!) to arrange for your cookies! 
  • I can make them ASAP or later in the month to accommodate a special birthday, anniversary, or gift for someone. I can give them to you or mail them to a loved one! 
  • Larger donations can get more cookies! 
  • The cookies are full of dairy, gluten, and sugar. Dietary restrictions cannot be accommodated. (I'm working on a gf version and hope to have it perfected soon!)
  • Want to make a donation but aren't interested in cookies? That's completely fine! Please feel free to make a donation of any amount here. Just don't come back and fill out the form. Won't hurt my feelings! 
  • Cookies are only available on a first-come, first-served basis. I can only make so many cookies at a time. Get your donations in quickly to ensure you're able to get your cookies! 


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Friday, February 26, 2016

Whatever you do...

Don't donate today! This is the only time I'll ever tell you not to donate, but I'm doing it today!

This year I will walk in my 10th and 11th Susan G. Komen 3-day for the Cure. It's been several years since I decided to walk in 2 events in one year. It is a challenge, but it's worth it. It's difficult to train, but I wake up before 6am nearly every day to get at least 4 miles in before the kids wake up. It's difficult to fundraise - raising $4,600 in a few months is not easy. It's difficult to get away for 4-5 days (Michigan will require 2 travel days plus the 3 days walking) with my two little ones.

But it's not cancer. It's not chemo. It's not a lifetime without a loved one.

Because I believe everyone deserves a lifetime, I'm going to keep walking. And this year that means traveling to Michigan in August to walk 60 miles and walking 60 miles again in November back in Dallas. In order to do that, I need to raise $4,600. My goal is to have Michigan completely done by April 22nd (My birthday!).

In order to do that, I'm announcing a VERY exciting fundraiser that you won't want to miss. Check back right here on Leap Day for all the information!
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Wednesday, February 10, 2016

Whole30 Recap

We are now about 10 days beyond the whole30 and I still haven't given an update!! First, let me tell you how we finished...

Day 1 - Ate Whole30 with the exception of some sweet potato fries and a small glass of wine after the kids went to bed. Felt bloated and had heartburn.
Days 2-3 - Ate Whole30 almost completely. (We split a root beer one night...)
Day 4 - Introduced legumes. We had black beans in our chili, peanut butter, and soy beans. Otherwise ate Whole30.
Days 5-6 - Ate Whole30 plus a little wine. No noticeable changes.
Day 7 - Gluten-free grains! We had gf pancakes with a little honey for breakfast, gf crackers for a snack, and stir fry with rice for dinner. I also made a grain-free chocolate brownie (no dairy) and we ate some of that. I was starting to feel a little general pain, but other than that just fine.
Day 8-9 - Back to Whole30. Jarrod and I are both fighting sinus pain, but I don't think it's diet related at all. I did have some gf crackers and peanut butter (against my better judgement) and fought a serious headache and muscle pain for the rest of the night. It could be unrelated to food, but I'm watching it carefully. It hit me that I'd been almost completely pain-free for about 30 days. No joint pain, muscle pain, headaches, etc.
Day 10 - DAIRY! This is the day Jarrod has been waiting for. He had some butter, I had some cheese. We had cauliflower pizza with parmesan and mozzarella for dinner and ice cream for dessert. I didn't notice any changes at all. Still feeling the sinus pain, but that's not coming and going with diet, it's staying...

On Friday we will add in gluten. This is our final introduction and essentially we will be free to eat whatever we want. Jarrod already knows he has trouble with gluten, so he's not adding that back in. I'll have some gluten and probably some dairy (it's hard to eat one and not the other!) but then plan to go immediately back to Whole30 after Valentine's Day. I anticipate that the weekend will have some cheese, wine, and cookies, so Monday-Wednesday I'll be strict Whole30 again.

I've learned a TON in this process. I've learned that I can live without cookies and diet coke. I've learned it is possible for me to say no to food. I've learned that I can feel so good or so bad based on what I've eaten. I have had zero food guilt for the past 6 weeks or so. That's incredible. I'm not taunted by food and do not feel the control food used to have over me. I have so much energy and feel really good.

I've also learned that this isn't as hard as I thought. Our kitchen is packed with approved foods and even the food that isn't compliant (for the kids) doesn't speak to me like it used to. I know how to shop for meals, know what we like and don't like, and know that we can live without cheese. I've learned how to eat in restaurants and stay on the plan.

While I'm nervous about introducing different food into my diet again, I know that I can always go back to the plan for a day or two to get back on track. I feel so in control and do not want to ever lose control over food again. I know it is apt to happen - the holidays next year will likely be rough! But I know it's easy to just jump back on the plan whenever I feel out of control.

Before starting Whole30 I thought that I was eating healthy. I didn't realize I was in pain. I didn't really understand the hold that food had on me. Now I feel fantastic, pain-free, and healthy. I've lost about 5 lbs. and my clothes fit better. I don't remember a time in my life where I felt better than I do right now. That's pretty awesome.
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Monday, February 1, 2016

Whole30 - Week 4 recap

We did it!! I'm writing this close to 8:30pm on day 30! I can't believe it's been 30 days because it feels like an eternity - in good ways and bad.

I assumed this last week would be the easiest. I assumed we'd have all the energy, none of the cravings, and life would be a breeze.

I was wrong.

Week 4 was rough.

The week started with me feeling pretty terrible - headaches, sore throat, and congestion. Nothing terrible, but it was about 7 full days of going to bed early, completely hoarse, and lots of coughing. Eloise joined me in misery and on Tuesday she was diagnosed with two ear infections and a host of other congestion-related illnesses. Mom of the year. So now I have a sick kid, I'm sick, and I can't even have a cough drop (the ones we have, my favorite, have rice sugar in them!) let alone a cookie! It was rough.

But I did it! I had a few extra raisins on Tuesday, but didn't eat any alphabet cinnamon cookies, chocolate chip cookies, or diet coke. The craving waves over me when life gets stressful, but I immediately ask myself if I actually want a chocolate chip. Usually the answer is no.

This week I also had the chance to eat out a few times and did well there too. I ordered a burger without a bun on a bed of lettuce, vegetable soup and a house salad with veggies, and a turkey burger on lettuce. It's hard to eat out because the food is more simple and not as delicious as what we're eating at home. It seems silly to spend money on a meal that isn't as good as something Jarrod can make!

This week we ate:


  • Egg casserole with butternut squash and spinach. Not my favorite, but it was easy!
  • Sweet potato hash and fried eggs
  • Sweet potato hash with bacon and eggs
  • Baked potato with spinach and a fried egg in bacon fat 


  •  Sausage and sweet potato hash
  • Tuna cakes with roasted vegetables
  • Ginger citrus chicken
  • Egg salad
  • Tuna salad
  • Baked potatoes with caramelized onions and sautéed mushrooms
We were very busy this week, so our meals were a little more boring because easy is best! I didn't get tired of anything, but writing it out like this makes me notice that it wasn't super exciting this week... 

This week we will begin reintroducing foods. We will still eat mostly Whole30, but will add in different foods ever few days. Legumes are on for Wednesday and Saturday we get to add gluten free grains. I'm excited about seeing how I feel after adding in different foods. 

Because we're not officially done, I haven't weighed myself. I don't know that I lost any weight, but I feel great. My clothes fit better, I have more energy, and I'm not as sluggish (especially in the afternoons!) as I have been. My cravings are just about gone and I feel much more in control of my eating. 

I'll write more next week as we begin to add foods back in and evaluate how we feel! 
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