Category Archives: Uncategorized

First Weighted Workout of 2019!!!

I haven’t been too in depth about my chronic pain with you folks, but let’s just say my weighted workouts have been fewer and farther in between as 2018 progressed. It seemed that no amount of “rest” or “recovery” time helped. To clarify: my body rarely hurts when I’m active, and in fact I feel pretty good for 30 minutes to a couple hours afterwards, but as the months dragged on, my bad pain days became a lot more common than my feel-good days, which makes finding the motivation to lift weights a bit of a challenge.

However, I’m pleased to say that I did my very first weighted workout of the year – 10 days in, not too bad if you ask me! Down below I’ve got my delt before pic and the exercises that I did. Hopefully I can build my delt muscles and lose some fat.

“Before” pic:

Exercises (sets)x(reps):

3×6 Double Forward Dumbbell Raise – 10 lbs
3×8 Bent Dumbbell Rows (alternating b/n wife and closed rows) – 20 lbs
3×8 Lateral Raise – 20 lbs
3×6 Shoulder Press – 20 lbs
3×5 Back Fly – 20 lbs
1 minutes of Prayer Pumps

There may be days, or weeks even, where I won’t be able to work out. I’m slowly learning to accept that. For now, I’m incredibly proud of this workout, and if you’re interested in hearing more or following along this journey, stay tuned because tomorrow I’ll have my weigh-in and more!

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I FAILED My Resolutions & That’s Ok!

I remember how stoked I was in December 2017 to set my goals for the following year (ahem, hi 2018). I thought they were achievable even though I made sure they were BIG. Go big or go home, right? But I also had a lot of secret goals that I didn’t want to share with everyone until I was close to achieving them (like shedding back and hip fat).

Imagine my absolute shock (sense the sarcasm) when I did NOT achieve all of my goals! Let me break it down for you (or you can go to my original post here).

These are the goals I WANTED to achieve:

  • Wear a bikini (with confidence) by swimming season
  • Improve form and posture
  • Two Macrobabe videos per week
  • Experiment with new recipes
  • SPREAD POSITIVITY

And theses are the goals I actually achieved:

  • Wear a bikini (with confidence) by swimming season
  • Improve form and posture
  • Two Macrobabe videos per week
  • Experiment with new recipes
  • SPREAD POSITIVITY (by a technicality)

At the time, I wanted to feel and look good, and I wanted to feel right in my skin. But my pain, which I thought was from pushing myself too hard and pulling muscles left and right, became chronic. It has caused me to slip into a very negative mindset, like a stick in the mud.

So no, I did not wear my bikini with confidence in myself (and I know there are people watching this blog who have called me fake and that I fake confidence, and I definitely have faked confidence, but if it gets me closer to the mindset I want, why is that a bad thing? At least I’m not faking friendships…). I wore a bikini and had a good time with friends (who, despite me leaving the friendship, and contrary to what they want to believe, I have no ill will towards lol).

I improved my form and posture, but it wasn’t from persistence in my workouts because I stopped working out with weights as much, and I decreased my cardio quite a bit. I ended up doing a lot more yoga and to this day still stretch twice a day. When I’m at my computer editing or watching TV or even eating a meal, I try to be mindful of my shoulders, back, and hips.

I absolutely failed in my macrobabe uploads. I know I harp on it, but my pain has felt like such a weight against me. Be forewarned though, I’m documenting my journey to getting a diagnosis and getting better, and it might get ranty and annoying!

On the plus, I did pretty amazing with my recipe experimenting. My family and I have tried a bunch of different types of food as a result of this goal. I couldn’t be happier! Recipes to come in this next year, hopefully (no promises, because let’s be honest, I am trash at commitment).

By a technicality, I spread some positivity. I felt as though I was a good influence for awhile and I’ve been determined to put on my positive pants, but I allowed an extremely toxic person in my life, who even though I was warned about, I wanted to believe I could be a positive influence to them. But it turned out they were like… a vampire, sucking all of my good vibes, telling me about how everyone else bad-mouthed me, and making me feel so isolated in a place that I thought I was welcomed. I allowed that to sit and poison me instead of reaching out to those other people for an explanation, to help fix the relationships with the others. Again, I’ve pushed through it, and though I don’t have any ill will towards any of them, I definitely intend on telling my story eventually and live my best life with all of them in the past.

By no means am I perfect, and I don’t pretend to be, but I’m still proud of the little that I accomplished. At the very least, I can say I’m a person who tries her hardest and has good intentions. I look forward to working on flaws and sharing my 2019 New Year’s Resolutions with all of you, even if resolutions are designed to fail.

I’ll see you all in the New Year. 2019, here we come!

GRAVEYARD PUDDING

Check out my video to see how I do it or scroll below for instructions:

Ingredients:
2 instant pudding mixes
1 pack of oreos
1 bar of white chocolate or a pack of white chocolate melts
Nutter butters split in half (for the tombstones)
Candy pumpkins
Gummy worms
Red cookie icing for a puddle of blood and writing on tombstones

Directions:

  1. Prepare pudding according to package
  2. Crush oreos (you can put them in a bag and let out some anger by smashing them with a rolling pin, or just put them in a food processor or blender)
  3. Layer the pudding and oreos evenly, with the last layer being thickly oreo’d
  4. Melt the white chocolate and coat the nutter butters in the melted white chocolate, set aside to cool
  5. When the nutter butter tombstones are cooled, write RIP on them with cookie icing
  6. After the RIP writing is set, place the tombstones, a pumpkin, worms and a puddle of cookie icing into the oreo pudding cups
  7. There you have it! A spooky treat the whole family will enjoy!

Lessons We Learn From Autumn

In a couple days, Fall will have arrived! This season is one of my favorites for a number of reasons:

  • Scratch baking/cooking: pumpkin pie, turkey (though I haven’t mastered it completely), fall cookies, apple crisps, mashed potatoes, hearty soups
  • Pumpkin flavored everything!!!
  • Fall crafts: creating wreaths, hand turkeys, carving pumpkins
  • Hayrides, corn mazes, haunted houses
  • Halloween!!!
  • Thanksgiving!!!!
  • Cold weather (or cool weather if you live in the desert like we do)
  • Hot drinks: cider, cocoa, PSL, tea
  • Cozy clothes

But this season serves an even greater purpose – and no, I’m not talking about how it’s finally cool enough to run without the discomfort of external heat! Fall serves as the perfect metaphor for self-improvement and moving on.

The most obvious part of Fall is change. Leaves turn colors, the weather shifts from hot to cool, the nights get longer and the days shorter. Nature welcomes the change. What we can learn from nature and its constant shifts, is to embrace the changes.

Maybe a relationship or friendship ended, you got fired, you found out a friend is moving away, or you have to move away. No one said change was easy, and if Fall could speak, I’m sure it’d say how brutal it can be. But sometimes you just need to ride it like a wave.

Another thing Autumn teaches us is to let things go. Trees lose their leaves, but they do not wilt and die as a result of the loss. They regrow! I had a talk with my oldest son recently. He said he wished he could forget something mean he heard someone say. I told him, it’s important that you don’t forget, but you can forgive – just let go of the anger or hurt, and move on, focus on the good. Mean people are usually just mad at themselves and it has nothing to do with you or anyone they’re mean to.

I don’t forget every vile thing someone has said to or about me, or the gossip another person tells me. But I’ve learned that these are not the people who will stick around in the long run. They aren’t going to serve as anything more than lessons on the human condition.

Nature shifts so drastically in the seasons. Leaves change their color, they fall, and then the trees grow new leaves, sometimes even fruit! Without Autumn and Winter, we wouldn’t have Spring and Summer. Every season serves a purpose, which shows us that there are greater things to come. There are bigger and better things on the horizon, you just need to push through the hard times.

This season, try to appreciate the little things. Treat yourself, take a moment to enjoy the smell of rain, make yourself a cup of steaming hot chocolate, snuggle up with a book or Netflix, spend a little longer in the decorations section than you normally would, sniff the hell out of those fall candles! We all have responsibilities, but make sure you’re taking care of yourself as the season changes. Don’t let anyone shame you or drag you down for enjoying life!

 

Simplest Lasagna Recipe Ever!

Recently, I channeled my inner Garfield and created a simple, but delicious lasagna! My toddler is SO picky, but he ate this up like it was candy. I even let my 10 month old (at the time) try some and he bounced in his high chair for more! It’s safe to say that this is a winner of a meal.

This is perfect for beginners, especially for parents and friendly gatherings! If you’re having a little dinner party with your closest friends, everyone bringing their own special dish, this is the perfect host/hostess main dish.

For this recipe, I used breakfast sausage rather than beef because the spices in sausage enhance the flavor of the lasagna. I’m sure you could use it as an excuse to have lasagna leftovers for breakfast too!

Timing is the only important part of this meal, but if you cook the meat to where it’s done before all of the lasagna noodles are boiled, you don’t have to worry.

The meaty sauce part is probably the easiest part of this all, and oh so good! Tomatoes, sauce, and meat create the heart of this dish!

I’d be lying if I said the ricotta wasn’t my favorite part of this dish. You guys know I’ve been doing a bunch of different monthly challenges, and red meat is now out so this isn’t a dish I’m making this month but man, oh man! I can practically taste the ricotta! Be warned, however, because spreading it on the noodles is pretty tricky.

Cheese lovers, meat lovers, carb lovers. This dish is for EVERYONE.

INGREDIENTS:

9 Lasagna noodles
16 oz. Breakfast sausage
8-12 oz Can of diced tomatoes
1 Jar pasta sauce
1 Tub of ricotta cheese
4 Cups of mozzarella cheese
Sprinkling of parmesan

Directions:

  1. Preheat the oven to 375 degrees
  2. Boil the lasagna noodles and set aside
  3. Line the pan with pasta sauce – not too thin, not too thick
  4. Brown sausage in crumbles over the stove as you would, drain the grease, and remove from heat
  5. Add both the can of diced tomatoes and pasta sauce, and stir until evenly distributed
  6. Place 3 noodles atop the sauce lined pan
  7. Spread ricotta, followed by sauce mixture, then sprinkle a cup of mozzarella. Lay down another layer of noodles, followed by ricotta, sauce, and another cup of mozzarella
  8. On the last layer, spread the ricotta, sauce, the rest of the mozzarella, then drizzle it with parmesan
  9. Heat until the top is golden brown, about 45 minutes – Just make sure to watch every five-ten minutes

Enjoy!! My mouth has been watering the entire time I’ve been writing this post!

Chili “Pigs” in a Blanket

As a mom continuously on the search for exciting new recipes, with kids who are hungry every five minutes during the summer, I was pleased when I was scrolling through facebook for inspiration and saw a picture of something that even I would eat!

You guys already know the tradition here: Sundays are family days where we love to try something new for dinner and dessert! Summer time is no exception! What’s more traditional than chili dogs in the summer?

These were a hit with even my pickiest eater, so parents, please take note!

My husband had bought jalapeno cheddar sausage specifically for me (my taste buds thanked him) but I used regular Johnsonville brats for his and the kids’. The recipe that I saw said to use cheddar sticks and crescent rolls as well, but I decided to make this my own but using what I had – a can of jumbo biscuits and shredded cheddar.

14 oz can of chili
1 can of jumbo biscuits (Pillsbury or the off-brand, we used Safeway’s brand)
8 Brats or sausages
Shredded cheese (we used cheddar, but make it your own)
Butter

The directions are very simple:

  1. Preheat oven to 375, and spray oven safe glass container with Pam or whichever cooking spray you prefer
  2. Empty the chili into a pot and heat on the stove. Once it’s heated, pour it into the glass container
  3. Unroll the dough and flatten each biscuit. Pour a hefty amount of shredded cheese along the middle, followed by a brat or sausage, and wrap the dough around. Pinch the dough together, and then place seam-down atop the chili. Do this for the rest of your brats.
  4. Place the dish in the oven and cook for 15 minutes or until the dough looks golden brown, then smear the stick of butter atop the biscuit (add parsley or garlic powder to the butter and melt it prior to this as an option)
  5. It’s ready to eat. Enjoy!

If you make this or switch things up, be sure to take a picture and tag me here or on instagram (you can follow me here!) I can’t wait to see what you guys come up with. Have a wonderful summer, folks!

Next up, I’ll have a variety of “bombs” to drop on y’all! Stay tuned!

Motherhood Depression

We’ve all heard of post-partum depression and while I’ve never dealt with that, I have dealt with depression my whole life, and depression as a result of being a mommy. Before you twist my words, let me explain what I mean by that.

Being a mom is already a taxing, and thankless job. Yes, I’m saying it is a job because it is hard work! When I became a mother for the first time, I was not together, my anxiety was absolutely through the roof, and I felt completely unprepared. It didn’t help that I was the almost on my own raising him. Point being, it’s work!

Lately there’ve been a few celebrity suicides in the news, and I think it’s important to point that out regardless if they’re parents or not, because the root cause of it is depression. Post partum depression is not uncommon – and if you’re dealing with that, I urge you to try your hardest to reach out.

I made a friend in the past couple months who I’ve gotten close to, and she’s a mom as well. One of the main things we’ve been able to bond over is depression. When you’re a mom, there’s a lot of judgment – not just from other parents, but of complete strangers, exes, exes’ new beaus, etc. It feels like the list goes on. It doesn’t matter what we do, someone is going to think we’re doing it wrong and that can weigh heavily on a parent.

Additionally, when you’re a working parent, it’s hard to find time to be active, keep up with household chores or repairs, keep the kids happy, socialize with your own friends, etc. All of those things can play a role in depression.

I know there are those who think depression is all in your head (um, yeah, that’s why it’s called a mental disorder), but if you see a friend who seems off, please reach out. Depression makes it very difficult for those suffering to reach out, so it’s important for us to help our loved ones!

Here are some helpful phone numbers, I urge you to copy and paste them if you know of anyone in need of help!

US Suicide Hotline 1-800-784-2433
NDMDA Depression Hotline – Support Group 800-826-3632
Suicide Prevention Services Crisis Hotline 800-784-2433
Suicide Prevention Services Depression Hotline 630-482-9696
Child Abuse Hotline – Support & Information 800-422-4453
Crisis Help Line – For Any Kind of Crisis 800-233-4357
Domestic & Teen Dating Violence (English & Spanish) 800-992-2600
Parental Stress Hotline – Help for Parents 800-632-8188
Runaway Hotline (All Calls are Confidential) 800-231-6946
Sexual Assault Hotline (24/7, English & Spanish) 800-223-5001
Suicide & Depression Hotline – Covenant House 800-999-9999
National Child Abuse Hotline 800-422-4453
National Domestic Violence Hotline 800-799-SAFE
National Domestic Violence Hotline (TDD) 800-787-3224
National Youth Crisis Hotline 800-448-4663

The Perks of Mental Growth

I read a quote the other day from Dita von Teese and I absolutely loved it. I’ve seen it around for a few years now, but it’s just really starting to hit me on how accurate it is.

This just hits me on so many different levels. I try my best to be positive and send good vibes out into the world, but if I have a bad day or write something negative on my social media, there have been people who said I’m fake because of that.

A lot of what I do, I do it for myself, for my family, my friends. I don’t generally do things to get on anyone’s good side. I don’t feel like that’s necessary. If my energy attracts you, then great. If not, that’s fine too.

What I think a lot of folks have a hard time grasping is that you don’t need to be friends with everyone. There are people who don’t like Cassey Ho, who is sunshine in human form, because they think she’s fake. She’s human, and I’m sure she gets sad or mad sometimes, but that doesn’t mean all the times that she’s doing her blogilates she’s fake. She’s better at compartmentalizing those negative emotions.

I’m not saying you should be rude or mean, or even ignore those who you know don’t like you, or don’t want to be around you. That’s not necessary, you can still be cordial. But if there’s one piece of advice I can give to you guys, it’s not to compromise yourself to fit what you think others want from you. I’m sarcastic sometimes, I’m extremely positive sometimes, I’m a disciplinarian sometimes, etc. I’m not going to stop being me just because someone else doesn’t like me.

 

Bridal Bootcamp: June Edition

Y’all ready for this

Get it? See what I did there?

No but seriously, I’ve got 5 months until I walk down the metaphorical aisle and I want to look as badass as humanly possible, which means it might be time for a little diet switch. I’ve hit a plateau and it is not settling with me very well. Why would it? It’s a flippin plateau! The further along in this journey we go, the more plateaus we hit, that’s just the reality we face.

Before I talk about my health and fitness plans for this month, I need to talk to you guys about something and maybe one of you can offer some advice: My back pain (which may be a workout injury, or a bad mattress, or a number of things that I can’t diagnose) has gotten worse. I no longer sit much during the day and if I do, I’m extremely self-conscious of my posture for fear of back spasms. I thought getting a new mattress might help things but I don’t think that’s going to help. So I’m definitely going to take it easy on my workouts this month, on the off chance that it’s workout-injury related.

TO THE PLANS!

My meal plans are going to stay the same with regards to calories, but instead of just blindly looking around for the least carbs/most protein noms that we have I’m going to be drinking a juice (of my creation, recipes to follow if I can manage that), a protein shake, a salad, and an intuitive meal for dinner.

My workouts will be light and include more yoga (well, yoga in general because my yoga has been so bloody limited). Fingers crossed, I’d love to tone up but right now I need to heal my rebellious back!

I’ll check in with you guys on Monday!

 

Cowgirl Casserole

You’ve heard of cowboy casserole… or maybe you haven’t, I don’t know your life. But I’m here to tell you about COWGIRL CASSEROLE! It’s a bajillion times better, or at least my kids and fiance would tell you that.

COWGIRL CASSEROLE 2

This, my friends, is one of my proudest chef-ing moments. Now, I may be eating vegan-esque this month, but I haven’t posted in quite some time and again, I was incredibly proud of this.

The great thing about being a stay-at-home mom (besides the fun and proud, tear-inducing moments), is that you can experiment with crafts and recipes in your spare time, which is exactly what I did with this.

I love – you don’t even understand how much emphasis I put on that word in this very sentence – watching cooking, baking, and decorating videos, so I’m following a plethora of foodie type facebook pages (and instagrams and tumblrs). There was a post by Southern Cooking, I believe, on cowboy casserole. I didn’t have, nor did I want all of the ingredients it had listed, so I… improvised!

Now for the long awaited (and I try not to write an entire blog post before the actual recipe because who wants to scroll that far?) recipe:

COWGIRL CASSEROLE

Ingredients:

1lb Ground beef or turkey (I used the latter)
1 packet of Taco Seasoning
Plenty of Mexican cheese blend (seriously this depends on how cheesy you and your family like your food)
1 can of diced tomatoes
1/2 a can of black beans
1/2 a can of sweet corn
A package of frozen tater tots

Directions:

  1. Preheat oven to 375 degrees while you brown your ground meat, then add the black beans and corn
  2. Follow the directions on the seasoning packet – usually it will tell you to pour in 3/4 of a cup of water and the seasoning, then simmer
  3. After you’ve seasoned the meat, turn the stove down to low, and mix in the diced tomatos for no more than 5 minutes
  4. You can grease the pan if you like your food a little on the buttered side, but we didn’t, and we poured the mixture in
  5. Top the meat mixture with cheese and then place the frozen tater tots atop the mixure
  6. Bake uncovered for 20 minutes, take the pan out and sprinkle it with a generous amount of cheese, and place the pan back into the oven for 5 more minutes
  7. Boom! Cowgirl Casserole! I strongly suggest adding jalapenos, habaneros, or even just sriracha sauce if you’re like me and need the heat. Otherwise it’s perfectly scrumptious with a dollop of sour cream on top!

If you end up making this dish, I’d LOVE to see your version of it. Please don’t hesitate to tag me in your posts! Have a delicious day, everyone!