You might be saying to yourself, “Geez, lady! Are you ever going to get consistent with your posting again?” And you know what my response is to that? “Oh yeah, totally… I hope.” I’m feeling distracted with my monthly challenge for April with the whole “Complete a BeachBody workout program” thing. I have been so focused on making the workouts happen, trying to average 10k steps each day for this month, and staying on track with the nutrition in the midst of normal life demands, that my whole routine is messed up and I can’t seem to get back into a good groove. I have some schedule re-figuring to do. Part of me wants to make my workout time first thing in the morning. The earliest I can get to it is 7:30 putting my completion time around 8/8:30. Not too bad but if I need to get a walk in (which is most days) I feel like I need to do it before showering and getting dressed and all that normally takes about an hour because I have to take Emmy with me. So with working out, walking to get steps in, then showering and getting dressed for the day, it’s basically about 10:30 and that just feels really late to me. Plus it means Emmy wakes up and I’m not focused on what she needs which leads to her feeling shoved to the side and neglected and therefore creates a whole new problem. So I’m weighing two options. Ya’ll tell me what you think and what you do that works best for you.
Option 1 (includes keeping a morning workout routine)
- 5:00- Up and go for a walk by myself
- 5:45- Coffee time with Isaac
- 6:15- Make breakfast
- 6:30- Eat Breakfast
- 7:00- Isaac leave for work, I workout
- 8:00- Shower and dress for the day
- 8:30- Start Emmy’s school and the rest of the day’s agenda
Option 2 (Goes back to my normal morning routine)
- 5:45- Coffee time with Isaac
- 6:15- Make breakfast
- 6:30- Eat Breakfast
- 7:00- Isaac leave for work, Emmy and I get ready for the day, do chores, etc.
- 8:30- Emmy’s school time
- 11:00- Lunch
- 12:00- Emmy Quiet time while I workout then both of us go for a walk
- 2:00- Shower and resume the day
Personally, I feel like option 2 just drags the day out way too much… but I also don’t like the idea of getting up and going at 5AM. Truthfully though, its the only doable way for the whole morning to not be totally de-railed. I think I’m just trying to find a way to not do 5AM… despite the fact I know they say that those who get up early and workout first thing tend to be the most successful. So what do you do? What works best for you? Do you have to worry about working out amidst the needs of little ones and homeschooling as well? Lemme know the groove you’ve settled into or what you’re trying to work through.
Let’s talk nutrition for a second. I have been staying pretty much on point despite not creating solid meal plans or trying specific recipes. Apart from one cookie I test tasted, out of a batch Emmy and I made for Isaac’s work using a new recipe, I have still avoided all gluten and am now almost 2 months into being “gluten free”. It has definitely helped me see other food groups that cause my body to react adversely. Dairy is the main one. Eating straight/ large amounts of dairy certainly have an affect on me so while I don’t need to go completely dairy free, I do need to limit my dairy consumption and use it in moderation. I already don’t eat a lot of dairy so that will be an easy thing to adjust.
Other than that, I’ve been trying to be more low carb than last month. I’m not eating bad carbs because I’m off of gluten and also cut out sugar/ sweets but the other carbs like brown rice, potatoes, quinoa, etc., while super healthy and great, are still high in carbs. Also, the Shakology shakes I’ve been using to replace breakfast do have carbs as well so I’m basically only consuming carbs from that and on a general, daily basis, avoiding them the rest of the day.
I tried something different that I’ll be dedicating a complete post to at some point but for now I’ll just give ya the general idea. I took a regular, average cookie recipe (seen in the gallery below) and replaced the sugars and flour with healthy and gluten free versions that claim a 1:1 ratio swap. I put that to the test. Obviously cookies are already sensitive so changing ingredients around will automatically alter one dynamic or another and this was no exception. In summation, the Swerve (the sugar substitute) was so overpowering because of the erythritol after-taste that I definitely wouldn’t recommend that. Maybe for a partial replacement but I won’t do it for the entire designated amount. Also, the gluten free flour made the dough a lot more dry so I had to add more butter but then the cookies just fell apart. The consistency of the cookies once baked were pretty good but the Swerve was so overpowering that I couldn’t really eat them and after a day they lost their chewy constancy. I know there are plenty of healthy cookie recipe options out there, many of which I have tried or will be trying. I did this recipe purely to satisfy my curiosity and see if these ingredients truly do equal and even swap.
Here’s a little gallery of some of my food the last couple weeks to include the cookie experiment. I post way more in my InstaStories so if you aren’t following me, be sure to check out my profile to keep up with all my eats and cooking attempts. (Username emily.helvin )
In other news, I joined all the quarantine craziness and dyed my hair. For me, this relatively subdued dark amethyst is about as crazy as I’ll ever get. To be perfectly honest, I have a box of dark brown sitting in my cabinet to slather over this once social distancing is over and I’m ready to resume my normal activities in which I’ll want to be taken more seriously than this crazy color allows. My sister happened to want to join in and is rocking some purple ombre touches herself.
A few days after I colored my hair, Emmy and I went to visit Romeo and see the peeps and shockingly, my sisters Abby (far left) and Naomi (far right) both went from undeniably blonde to a dark brunette and a deep red! They haven’t ever colored their hair before apart from some colored tips or highlights so it was quite the shocker. They look so good though, don’t they?
The miscellaneous news is truly minimal. Friday before last, Emmy and I took cookies up to the dealership and helped Isaac do some grilling. Of course we hung out to eat as well. This weather has been gorgeous and all I want to do is shirk any sense of responsibility and be out in it. It is abnormally cool and even if it gets a bit warm midday, the mornings and evenings are so cool it’s creepy. Of course bad weather is the payment for the nice climate change but par for the course.
With that awesome weather, we have been trying to take advantage of it with as many walks and strolls as possible. Emmy always brings a stuffed animal and is obsessed with picking flowers right now. It’s one of those little things that makes my heart smile.
I used the IKEA room planning tool to get my new sewing/ craft room designed with efficient storage solutions and practicality for taking in some alterations. (The picture is not my current design.) There are several features I’m incredibly excited about. Everything will be completely removable so I could take it with us if we ever moved and the storage is both high quality and efficient. It will include a 60″ long adjustable, floating desk/ table that I can raise or lower to a custom height for either a cutting table or additional work space to the large desk I’ll have for both of my machines to be set up permanently. I currently don’t have anything that could be used for the space I have so I’ll be building the room from scratch. I can’t wait to get it going!
We’ve recently added fishing to our list of outdoor family favorite pastimes. We totally suck at it and can’t seem to hit the right spots at the right time but we’re slowly learning, adding to our tackle box of wishful lures, and replacing a pole each trip due to some people not being able to fish without getting stuck incessantly to the point of busting a few rods. These expeditions have also got us talking about eventually investing in a little boat we can take out on the water and also add a fun element to our camping trips.
Much to my surprise, Emmy prefers the job of “worm fetching girl” and she’ll dig around in the canister for a wriggler just like the best of ’em.
Something Isaac and I try to do at least once a year is have a night or two away to ourselves. Given the social distancing mandate, we randomly decided to let Emmy spend a couple nights with her grandparents and we did a two day stay-cation. We haven’t done anything just the two of us (except work events) for almost a year so this was not only much needed but incredibly refreshing for us both.
On Saturday, we wen’t fishing in Eufala where I totally lucked out and caught a largemouth bass. And yes, of course I brought it home, cleaned it, cooked it, and ate it. I don’t see the purpose of fishing unless you’re going to eat it, honestly. Anyone else?
After fishing in Eufala, we ordered a nice dinner for delivery and ate dinner and watched a movie before falling asleep.
On Sunday, we went to Ed Lisenby in Ozark again but this time got a backpack fishing gear set up so we could easily hike around the lake’s 3 mile trail and fish along the way. Like I said earlier- we suck at fishing. So needless to say, we didn’t have any luck with catching anything on Sunday but we had such a nice time being outside and spending that quality time together.
After getting way more sun than we should have, we came home, chilled, played PubG and ate sushi then knocked out number 6 of the Fast and Furious series we’ve been working through watching over the last month and half. It was a super nice and relaxing weekend and Isaac and I both appreciated the quiet time together.
P.S. Thank you, Mom, Dad, Abby and Naomi for watching Emmy for us!
And now… drum roll, please… welcome the newest member of the Helvin household: Romeo! He is officially 8 weeks old and we brought him home Monday when I was bringing Emmy home from the weekend. He is adjusting super well. He and Poppy have some things to work out but they are already doing pretty good and getting along better and its only been a day. Emmy is completely obsessed with him, just as I anticipated. She carries him around and he’ll just perch wherever she is.
Isaac’s allergies don’t appear to be bothering him at this point apart from the very occasional sneeze. I’m feeling fairly confident that with the right amount of precautions I’ve researched and implemented and staying on top of cat hair that we should be able to make the whole cat thing work.
Coming up on the blog later this week: my complete, official, unbiased review of my Beach Body program to include the workouts, Shakology, nutrition plan, my specific coach and group I took part in as well as my before and after pictures and measurements. I do *not* sell Beach Body so my review will be purely as a consumer. I will list all the pros and cons I experienced.
Hope ya’ll are having a great week and coping with the continued issues from all the Covid craziness.