Epic Mom Guilt and Embracing A Little Selfishness

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There’s no such thing as a perfect child and therefore the fairytale that is a perfect Mom does not exist either.  Motherhood is different for everyone and survival is the goal for everyday – not Pinterest perfect, gluten-free muffins for breakfast and not homemade outfits from recycled curtains – let’s just say that Babyzilla is known to have a bag of Cheetos puffs for breakfast.  As a mom, I try to set lofty goals for myself but not too high in order to avoid disappointment later.  After all, my everyday goal is to not lose my temper too badly and avoid causing permanent damage to the kids, and that I’ll make it home with all kids in tow so I can put those little dictators angels to bed and have a bottle glass of wine and possibly catch some Netflix with Michael.

In all Mommy honesty, we have all those days where we hide in the bathroom to get an extra 2 minutes of Facebook viewing while risking a toddler going out the front door.  Just kidding…the seven year-old was watching her.  Oh, I mean, my unicorn was….

Shame Lady GOT

I want to share with you my top not-so-perfect-Mommy practices in order to (hopefully) let you have the honest conversations with fellow mommies.  The point is, the idea that a mommy has to be everything and do everything is not realistic (even with a badass partner like my husband!) and I refuse to emotionally beat myself up based on what some Pinterest mommy board tells me.  If you drop by on any given day, you will find that my house is probably messy, we are eating sandwiches for dinner, and someone may be skipping bath night because I want to relax and maybe run to the gym.  Mommy tip…dry shampoo works on kids too!

I could try harder to “do it all” but that would mean that I would have to be more selfless, and I refuse to give up myself.  Yep, I would rather have an hour at the gym and live with a messy playroom.  I can walk away from that playroom and not look at it all day.  I have to look at myself in the mirror and it will be a constant reminder that I didn’t take care of myself and hit the gym.  As a mom, I have to constantly weigh decisions based on everyone’s needs and sometimes, I am more important.  And, that’s ok.

Behold, my top three shameful Mommy behaviors that I’d like to say I’m going to change but I probably won’t because I accept that I am allowed to be a little bit selfish:

#3.  Daycare Hair.  I’m not capable of mastering simple hair styles.

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I was blessed with a full head of thick, wavy hair that I can straighten, curl, or do anything with.  Unfortunately, I only really learned to do my hair two ways…down, or up in a ponytail.  I used to think that having a daughter would motivate me to learn how to braid and do all of the cool, girly hair styles you see on Pinterest.  Um no.  That did not happen and I struggle with doing anything with Isabella’s long locks besides plopping a bow in it or pulling it up in a ponytail.  Her daycare must see my struggle too because ever since Babyzilla began going there, she comes home with beautiful braids and hairstyles that I could never learn to do on my own.  One morning, she even told me not to mess with her hair because she was going to get it done at school.  Oh my.

#2.  Co-sleeping.  Sometimes, it’s just easier to coral them in one room.

Clones sleeping

Babyzilla and Antonio are both lucky to have their own bedrooms with queen sized beds.  But, they usually end up together in Antonio’s room.  Bedtime is tricky because on a good day, it only takes twenty minutes for people to settle down while on a bad day, this could take hours.  We let the kids sleep in the same room because Antonio is obedient about turning off the lights and following the routine we ask him to do.  Then lately, it never fails that Babyzilla comes crawling into our master bedroom at 5 AM and snuggles in between us.  I’m not getting up at 5 AM to do anything much less fight a threenager on going back to her own room.  I value my precious sleep moments that early in the morning and so I often have a tiny person wrapped around my head like a cat.

#1.  Mommy Doesn’t Cook…My Daddy Only Cooks.  When my son was in Kindergarten, he proudly presented me with an “All About Mom” booklet that he had worked on for Mother’s Day.  The results of the first page sent me through a roller coaster of emotions and made me realize the way my child sees me through his eyes is so much more simpler than how I see myself.  The page read:

Antonio Kindergarten Mothers Day

So, my immediate reaction to the cooking comment was that it is true (kudos to Michael) and then I proceeded to laugh at the squash comment because i don’t even remember the last time I ate squash.  I am a chocolate and bacon type of girl.  Almost three years later and my son will now say that cooking is done 50% by Daddy and 50% by Mommy.  Yay for Blue Apron!

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Healthy eating and an active life style are important things I am trying to teach my kids, but I won’t ban McDonald’s from our diets…only the “chicken” nuggets.  I have slowly in the past couple of years embraced this whole cooking concept and we do cook for about half of the week.  Kitchen is closed on weekends unless someone wants to get fancy and make pancakes.

Guilt, shame and feelings of insecurity are things every mom struggles with on a daily basis.  Instead of focusing on the things I can’t do, I try to accept my faults and focus on the Wins of the Day as Kendra has so eloquently suggested to all of us.  Sometimes, those wins include reading bedtime stories and goodnight hugs and kisses.  Other times, it means celebrating that I squeezed in twenty minutes to workout.  A good litmus test on getting perspective is always hearing my son pray at night.  No matter how much I discipline him or nag him about everyday “stuff”, he always thanks God that I am his mother.  That and the fact that he says I’m sweet as pop tarts.

Antonio Mothers Day K

 

Getting Over My (non)Runner’s Shame

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I’ve gone through a running journey that will (God willing) probably continue for the rest of my life…yet for a long time, I refused to label myself a “runner”.

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My SIL Jennifer is my runspiration…I literally run after her!

I took up running when my sister-in-law Jennifer was looking for a running buddy and I was interested in losing some weight, and have been hooked ever since.  No matter if I’m training for a marathon or barely squeaking by on 5 miles a week, I have finally gotten over myself and admitted to myself that I am a runner!

I go through phases when I stop running altogether but I will still read about running, look at other runner’s instagram posts, and even sit and think about speed training programs.  Yet, even when I was looping White Rock Lake (only real runners do this on Saturdays) at the butt crack of dawn, I was somehow intimidated to call myself a full-blown runner.

Why?  I’ll tell you why…I was stuck on this idea that runners had to look a certain way.  They had to have those long, thin limbs that make them look like they can get carried away by the wind at any moment and they don’t have anything that jiggles, flops or bounces.

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The reality of the sport of running is that runners come in all ages, shapes, sizes, and colors.  And that is what made me fall in love with running.  It’s inclusive of everyone, regardless of bodytype, and the results are undeniably good for your health.  It’s one of the only sports where you can literally go out to a park, or where ever, and join a runner’s group and no one will think you are a freaking weirdo.  They will welcome you and say, “Oh hi, what’s your PR goal?”.  Then, they will proceed to ask you about your nice running pants or shoes.  Amazing, because this actually happened to me when I joined a running group!

That’s when it all clicked for me…I am a runner.  I started looking around and found these incredible, yet normal people like me that are running like the hilarious genius of Kelly on Run, Selfie, Repeat and the mold breaking covers of the Women’s Running magazine that dared to look like this and this, and I was further inspired to show my pride for the running community that I belong to.

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Running for the past ten years has helped me overcome post-baby weight, served as therapy for stressful job situations, and helped keep my sanity when life’s pressures are threatening to spill over.   Not to mention it brought me closer to some of my dear friends like the other two NonBlondes!  My unicorn will often tell me to, “Go for a quick run” when he sees the crazy behind my eyes.  He would rather spend an hour putting kids to bed on his own than having me be a miserable mess all night because I didn’t get to put in the miles.  So, I’ve come to the realization that it doesn’t matter where or how or why I run, and the important part is that I continue getting out there and proving to myself that I am a runner and I’m actually kind of good at it!

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Running the half with my sister Rocio while 3 mos prego with Babyzilla
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Antonio at a Color Run :)

I’m currently in one of my running modes where I run often, but not for long distances.  I can’t seem to balance my time between life’s responsibilities well enough to get away for hours, so I cherish anytime I can get to hit the street or gym treadmill.  I mostly run on my own, but lately, I’ve had the luck of bribing having the company of my sisters or my friends and other times it’s just me and Babyzilla in the stroller.  I used to run half marathons and even ran one while pregnant with Isabella and then shortly post-baby, but that goal is not in my short term future.  Instead, I try to make the most of every short run that I get and keep pushing myself beyond my limits.

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Babyzilla is often my running buddy!

So, if you live within a twenty mile radius of North Dallas and need a running buddy, let me know!  Do you like to run races?  What’s your best PR?  Are you a closet runner like I was?  Share your stories with us in the comments section.

Cheers,

Elisa Sig

Budgeting or a Pap Smear?!?!

Which is worse? As Elisa said, they both leave you feeling violated. I have never been a budgeting gal. My college roommate would chase me around the house to take my credit cards away from me and cut them up per my momma’s request. I would try ridiculous things to not spend money like freezing the credit cards so if I really needed  wanted something I would have to defrost the damn things just to go shopping.  I was a sucker for a “wanna open a Victoria’s Secret, Ann Taylor, Gap, Harold’s, Express, Target, etc, etc, etc, credit card and save 10%?” Well heck yes I do, having that credit card will save me $30 on this purchase. (Never mind that I would pay that $30 back 20 fold in interest in the years to come.) That is exactly what those devil credit card companies wanted, and they hit a jackpot with this shitty spender. And we wonder how I ended up with 13 credit cards and in $30k worth of shopping, eating, drinking, and traveling debt when I graduated college?? I also foolishly thought to myself “when I get out of college I will make good money and pay off the debt in no time!” I guess I forgot I would have other bills to pay and that the government would want about 20-30% of that so called income. Fast forward to 10 years after college I FINALLY paid off all those damn clothes I no longer had and bar tabs I had recovered from.

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I have been very lucky that I have stayed out of that kind of debt for quite some time now and while we do have a couple ‘debts’ now, these are things we have 0% interest on and pay on monthly so we don’t end up paying more for them in the long run. With the building of the new home and what I am sure will be expenses I can not even fathom when we have kids in the future, I think we need to get our act together and ASAP.

I have taken classes through the church on spending and budgeting. I have a MINT account. I have tried a few different things but this blog series will be a chronicle of my experience with a new budgeting software and hopefully a new lease on life when it comes to money. I hope you will join me on this little rollercoaster ride as I am sure I am going to snap and need  want a new Mulberry or pari of Tieks soon because I don’t like budgets.

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So what are we doing here?

Kyle and I just had a sexy, steamy, 3-way WebEx date while he is in Oregon with YNAB. (You Need A Budget) Actually more like a 30-way but who is counting. What I find appealing already is there are WebEx classes to help you get started and continuing education once you do. While Kyle had already started looking into this and had cheated on me with the WebEx classes before, he decided to kick up the romance and invite me to join. I must admit, this approach sounds great! I think the YNAB logic aligns more with my mindset on budgeting and I am excited to get started. The WebEx allowed for questions and was very interactive. They also have a blog to help keep you on track and for information.

First things first.

This weekend we will be going through our MINT account to itemize our excessive spending to see just where we blow the most cash each month. Just a highly educated guess, next to car and home payments, Sephora and Nordstrom will be the top winners. Once we see where we are spending we will also have a good idea of what are top ‘priority’ line item budget items are and we can start working on our budget accordingly. Second educated guess, Sephora and Nordstrom won’t be making the cut. Super sad face. Once we start setting our budget we will have to be super diligent in keeping track DAILY with what we spend and if we are sticking to this budget. Luckily there is an app for that, shocker I know. So instead of looking at Facebook on the pot, I will be budgeting. You know you are old when…..

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The coach on the WebEx tonight said he spends about 5 minutes a day checking and updating the budget daily, surely I can do that if I can play on Facebook for much longer periods of time.

So check back in a week or so and see how the whole budgeting process is going. Kyle and I have another hot date/WebEx this next week on how to budget while putting everything on the credit cards.

What do you do for a budget? Ever used YNAB? Any advice?

Amanda Sig

What Kind of Parent Will I Be

**Disclaimer, I am not pregnant and this is not me announcing that I am**

The hubby and I are ‘practicing’ making babies monthly now, hopefully soon one will stick and we will get a lil peanut but until then I want to share with you what kind of parent I will be.

What are my qualifications you ask?? Listen, I know everything there is to know about having a kid. I nannied starting as young as 15. I couldn’t even drive myself to my first gig however I was apparently responsible enough (or cheaper than good help) to take care of a 9 month old and a 1st grader every day after school from 4:00 until 6:30pm. I took care of kids in day care settings, babysat through college, and even post college on some occasions for friends with their own actual kids. I pride myself in being very knowledgeable as I have read a few books and ask my actual parent friends a ton of questions and pick their brains, so clearly I have this whole thing figured out. Plus there are the dogs, I think that in and of itself is great training, right?!?!

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I hear my friends say you can never pee alone after having kids, clearly these two are warming me up for the big show.

Here is what kind of parent I will be and what my kids will and will not do.

I will not be the crazy new mom who calls her doctor for everything strange that happens to her body. I got this! Millions of women have gone before without the help of having their doc on speed dial. Who are we kidding, I call my doctor, my doctor friends, and nurse friends for anything and everything because being in the medical sales has caused me to become a hypochondriac. I have a feeling my doctor will fire me before 5 months.

I will not change my life for a kid, this kid will fit into our life. We will still brunch and travel and host great gatherings at our home as usual. Ha, I will be lucky if we get out of the house the first 6 months. I will have forgotten what a mimosa tastes like and forget having people over, I won’t even want a housekeeper to see what state of disrepair my house has fallen into.

I will have my kids sleep trained by 3 months at the absolute latest. Yeah, just like I have my dogs sleep trained. They never wake me when they need to pee, or when there is a thunderstorm, or when they decide it would be nice to play with their ball at 3am or when there is a full moon…I could go on.

I will not allow my kids iPads/iPhones at the table, in the car, or out in public as a distraction. I was raised in a time when we had to self entertain with stupid toys at the doctors office or play the ABC/123/License Plate game on road trips. If I can do it, so can my kids. Except when they can’t and I haven’t had a mimosa in 21 months and I want to snap and give in to their every whine just so I can sip on a damn OJ and Champs mommy drink.

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Keeping kids distracted at the doctor since 1970’s.

I will not allow my children whatever they want for dinner, I am their mother, not a short order cook. And then I will be because after working all day and dealing with the craziness that is a 9-5 I won’t give a rats ass if you want hummus and Fruit Loops for dinner, if it will keep you from throwing a fit and get something decent in your stomach, I will pull up a chair and have the same.

I will keep my house and car clean. I can have nice things and kids too. I actually don’t think this one will be hard to accomplish. My girlfriend has discovered the perfect way to keep her adorable daughter entertained and her house clean at the same time. I mean, look at the genius mom invention!

No children were harmed in the making of this picture, actually she did this to herself.
No children were harmed in the making of this picture, actually she did this to herself.

I will not lose my cool and spank my child or raise my voice. When I was naughty I got a belt or a spoon or a hand or anything close enough to grab. Then there were the looks and the groundings. I don’t think those shaped me as a person at all! I don’t think learning to respect authority and what my limits were did any good for my development as a child or adult. Oh and being a strong willed child who pushed the boundaries never led to said spankings. Who are we kidding, I deserved everyone and probably more. And before I get all the emails saying spankings aren’t good for children, my husband and I  will make that call with our clones, you do you and we will do us.

I will not allow them to dictate what they wear or where we go. My kids will wear what I say and their very rare poor behavior will not cause me to change our plans and leave a grocery store buggy full of groceries. I think I have a decent sense of fashion and my children will appreciate that and agree with all my wardrobe choices for them. I will never let them leave the house in a Disney dress, a super hero cape, and their cowboy boots. Unless I am trying to get to a HH with a girlfriend and then I will care less what they wear as long as I can have one sip of a glass of wine, then they can wear what they want as long as they let me drop them off with a sitter, or a stranger. I will need the wine.

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His daddy loved the furry leg warmers!

I will not teach them bad habits or bad language. But if they do shout “Fu@&ing Move Dude” at random drivers then they surely picked that up from the nanny/day care/church pre-school because we all know I would never say anything like that, ever. Oh and I definitely wouldn’t wet my pants laughing when they do. And when my daughter reaches an age to start imitating me she wouldn’t do this.

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“Mommy, I want some fancy juice for NYE too!” *It was sparkling grape juice, don’t email me please.

Lastly, I will not stick to a single one of these because like every mom I know, you do the best you can to keep them happy and alive and not lose your sanity some days. But I know they will be worth it and I can’t wait!

What did you think you would or wouldn’t do as a first time mom?

If you are about to be a first time mom, this was actually a great article, http://www.parents.com/baby/new-parent/motherhood/what-i-know/

Amanda Sig

I love Work Out Accessories…..Working Out Not So Much!

As you may recall, I had a New Years “Wish” to do a better job of working out and eating better. I think I have tried to do better but seeing as how I did a pretty hard core Pilates class for 3 months last year prior to the wedding, I still have a ways to go this year to ‘do better.” But one thing I have gotten better about this year is all the fun accessories I am finding for working out.

First thing the hubby and I did in January was join Camp Gladiator. If you remember the American Gladiator show from the 1990’s, that is basically Camp Gladiator. Actually when it was revived for one season around 2008 (I think), the winner from right here in Texas started Camp Gladiator with the prize money. It has been fun to workout with my husband but one thing I desperately needed was a mat strap. He has a thin yoga mat that came with a strap but I am a giant baby and have a super thick mat since working out outside is not my favorite. Lugging that dumb mat was a pain, luckily ‘I have a guy girl for that!” My uber talented friend can sew just about anything and she started an online business focused on yoga and other workout accessories, HandmadeYoga! She is a lifesaver and made me an extra long strap for my mat which may seem like nothing to most people but lugging this thing around is so much easier and I think it is adorable! If you are in the market for anything Yoga, Barre, Pilates, or meditation related, there is probably something to pick from. She has even had requests for sock bags for after Barre classes, honestly I think that would have come in handy when I was taking pilates. Check out her Etsy Shop here!

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While I do love me some Camp Gladiator, some weeks just don’t go as planned. Be it work, travel, or stomach bugs and finding an hour plus for working out just doesn’t happen. Yes, I know, if I was super dedicated I would make time but until I can figure out how to make the same paycheck by working out, I have to find other ways to get moving. 4 or 5 years ago I somehow got talked into training and running a half marathon. I didn’t keep up with the running and now I am trying to get back into it, not half marathon crazy, more like a regular 5k kind of crazy. So I downloaded the Couch to 5K app.

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But you can’t very well run with your phone in your hand so I found this SUPER CHEAP (look at me not spending a ton of money!) arm band for my phone. And while I imagine running with your iPhone on your armband would be the 2016 equivalent to this…

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….it really is beneficial to have some nice earbuds. I have a pair of the Bose Earbuds that I have had for some time. They fit in my little ears and don’t tend to fall out easily. My girlfriend also suggested the JayBird Wireless earbuds which will be a little treat to myself when I sign up and run my first 5k!

Lastly there is hydration! With all this shopping working out you need to hydrate. I have fallen in love with a certain water bottle by S’well. These things are AMAZING! I put some ice and water in one during a bachelorette party in NEW ORLEANS in the SUMMER and the ice didn’t melt THE WHOLE DAY! I may over use the caps lock but I can’t over stress how amazed I was. I also made some flavored tea one night and put it in the bottle hot and attempted to chill it over night in the fridge with the lid off. Nope, had warm tea the next morning.

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What are your go to items for working out? Elisa did a great post on her favorite workout pants and I like all things accessory. Share what you need to get through a workout, I am always up for more shopping working out. If you need help finding a workout program you love, check out Class Pass, it lets you try all the different gyms in your area to see what you love. I did just hear about a new workout on trampolines I think I need to go check out!

Good night, off to bed so I can make my 4:45am Camp Gladiator class.

Amanda Sig

 

WOTW: Wins of the Week

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Over the course of my career I’ve been fortunate to have a few amazing bosses (and a few terrible ones). Each of those fantastic leaders was more than a manager, they were also a mentor that worked to guide me through growing my skill set or navigating office politics. One particular manager encouraged me to keep a working list of all my accomplishments over the course of the year, so that if I ever wanted a promotion or raise, it would be very easy to justify. That list can also be very handy during review season when you can’t seem to remember what you’ve done the last twelve months.

Creating and maintaining the list had some great results. First, I noticed when my productivity was lacking. Noticing the list hadn’t grown often encouraged me to buckle down and knock items off my to-do list that I had been procrastinating on.  Second, the list reminded me of how far I had progressed. Noticing those positives can be hard when you are bogged down in the day to day tasks, but the list reminded me that the work would result in achievement of a goal. At the end of each year I had a great list of all the projects that had moved forward or completed due to my contributions.

About six months ago, Lou of Mommy Sanest reached out to me about joining a Wins of the Week (WOTW) email list. Basically at the end of each week, one of us in the group would start an email and list out a few wins that occurred that week. The bonus to this group is that the wins weren’t limited to the office, your win could be about any facet of your life. I realized that although I was in the habit of recording my career accomplishments, I had never thought to reflect on accomplishments outside of the office. I quickly accepted Lou’s invitation and within the week there were three of us reflecting on the positive aspects of our week.

The beauty of this WOTW group is that the wins can really vary depending on what kind of week you experienced, but we still celebrate all of them. It is a great way to end your week on a positive note. Here are just a few of the wins our group has reflected on:

  • My iphone is still working even though it took a quick dunk in the kitchen sink two days ago. After a 24 hour time out in the rice, I’m THRILLED it still works!
  • After three hours and a ridiculous amount of help from my instructor, I finally installed a zipper into the skirt I’m trying to sew.
  • I generally had a healthy week. We made dinner every night, and I tried a 30 minute class at the new fitness studio down the street.
  • Gave a presentation with about 24 hours of notice. I was super nervous, but it went really well and people now seem to think I’m a natural at that sort of thing.  If they only knew!
  • I let my husband take over. He had Tuesday-Friday off, and he has been Mr. Momming it up. Sometimes I have trouble letting these things go (control!!!)
  • I’ve flossed every night this week.
  • Spent an hour on the phone with my brother. Really excited to see him for the holiday. Good reminder that I want to spend more of my time in 2016 with the people I love!

Besides allowing us to reflect on our weeks and find the positives, we’ve also built a great little support network for those weeks when it is tough to find any wins. Even though I live far away from the others in the group, I still feel their support each week when we trade emails and I always look forward to learning about what wins they report.

How do you keep up with your accomplishments at work or at home? Anyone else have a manager that they loved? Let us know in the comments.

Kendra Sig

Let’s Do A Makeover!

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I have been styling the same Cover Girl Classic Pink blush since I was fourteen.  It’s kind of my thing.  In my journey to improve my health and well-being, I also thought I would makeover my look.  So, I decided to get a Sephora makeover!

To give you a little bit of background on my current situation, it basically consists of what I call grocery store makeup.  I don’t typically go to fancy department stores and get MAC makeup or invest in ridiculously expensive creams for my face.  I think it’s because my Mom doesn’t ever wear makeup and neither do my sisters and I’ve just never ventured out to discover it.  You could say I’m sort of a makeup virgin.  So, this is where the other two of the Three Non Blondes stepped in.  I recently joined them to a visit to Sephora and was immediately overwhelmed, excited and mesmerized by the beautiful palettes, lipstick tubes and rows and rows of colors in that very strategically lit store.  I didn’t pull the trigger then, but the curiosity definitely sat with me for a while.

At Christmas, my unicorn gifted me with a $100 dollar gift card to Sephora and I knew what I would do with it – makeover!!!!

My “Before” look consists of lots of pink blush, sparkly eye shadow, mascara and lip gloss galore.  I may throw in some eye liner every once in a while for a date night but I never, ever experimented with lipstick…and I really wanted to.

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My Sephora Makeover...was not what I expected.  It was crazy busy and my beauty consultant was late and then rushed.  I didn’t know what to expect so I agreed to let her take charge and ended up with two inch thick eyebrows and an aged look.  The looks on my friends’s faces was priceless!  I love their honesty.  On the other hand, Kendra walked away with a sweet date night look that looked amazing with her red hair.  Before leaving the store, my friends led me to some of their staple products and I was able to walk away with new toys to play with at home.

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Before my makeover…so excited!
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After…Me – sporting crazy eyebrows. Kendra – looking fabulous!

Once I got home, I found myself with tons of new makeup thanks to my new purchase and a TON of donated makeup from Amanda.  I wasn’t sure where to start so I did what every person in my situation would do…I went to YouTube.  There, I found a makeup goddess who calls herself Dacey that I am thinking of following on twitter and instagram because I’m convinced we could be real friends.  After all, her makeup is fierce, flawless and fabulous.  I’ve spent the past week sitting on the couch next to Michael watching her videos and attempting her looks.  Here are my favorites…

YouTube look #1: Victoria’s Secret Fashion Show Makeover

Sephora Look 1
Fresh look with pink lipstain, subtle blush, and neutral eye shadow

I love this look because it introduced me to lip stains and liquid eye liner.  Here’s the list of products I used to create the look:

  1. Too Faced Melted Lip Stain in Melted Candy
  2. Stila All Day Eyeliner
  3. Urban Decay Naked Eye Palette in Virgin, Sin and Toasted
  4. Ben Nye Luxury Powder in Banana
  5. Too Faced Better Than Sex Mascara

YouTube look #2: Smokey Eyes

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Smokey eyes for beginners…I understand why people get eyeliner tattoos

The smokey eyes were not as dramatic as the one on the video because I’m still working on my blending technique.  Plus, I don’t have the patience to blend a bazillion colors with dozens of brushes.  Small steps people.

  1. NARS Satin Lip Pencil in Rose Pink
  2. MAC Pro Longwear Lipcreme in Unlimited
  3. Stila All Day Eyeliner
  4. Urban Decay Naked Eye Palette in Virgin, Sin and Creep
  5. TreStique Shadow Crayon in Aspen Pine
  6. Ben Nye Luxury Powder in Banana
  7. Too Faced Better Than Sex Mascara

YouTube look #3: Red Lips

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Vavavoom red! It was life changing, can you tell?

I absolutely LOVE this red lip gloss.  I haven’t gotten the chance (or nerve!) to wear it in public yet but I’m hoping to very soon…maybe on Valentine’s Day…

  1. NARS Velvet Matt Lip Pencil in Cruella
  2. London Lippy Butter in Come to Bed Red
  3. Stila All Day Eyeliner
  4. Urban Decay Naked Eye Palette in Virgin and Half-baked
  5. Ben Nye Luxury Powder in Banana
  6. Too Faced Better Than Sex Mascara

YouTube look #4: Same as Red Lips Tutorial but for Daytime

Sephora Look 3
I can do this all day people!

This look is basically the exact same with a more subtle, pink lipstick.  It’s a very easy daytime look that I feel comfortable wearing to work and it doesn’t require a tremendous amount of time.

  1. NARS Satin Lip Pencil in Rose Pink
  2. Rimmel Show Off Lip Lacquer in Celestial
  3. Stila All Day Eyeliner
  4. Urban Decay Naked Eye Palette in Gunmetal as eye liner on bottom lid
  5. Ben Nye Luxury Powder in Banana
  6. Too Faced Better Than Sex Mascara

What I’ve Learned…is how improving my outward appearance has come at a time when I am trying to make other changes in my life, and it’s refreshing.  My outward appearance may not have changed that much, but I feel a twinge of budding confidence when that lip stain touches my lips.  See, my lips were my enemies when I was little.  I absolutely hated having big, pouty lips.  When I was a little girl, other kids made fun of them and I felt really self conscious.  So, I kept them subtle and bare.  As a teenager, I embraced my full lips and glossed them until they had a reflection of their own!  Now, I feel like I’ve finally learned how to dress those big, pouty lips while also properly making over the rest of my features.

Do you have any makeup tips for me?  What are your favorite products?  Do you like shopping at Sephora?  What is your favorite feature of your lovely face?  Share with us in the comments section!

Cheers,

Elisa Sig

Fitspiration: Keeping My Workout Resolutions

Workout01
My attempt at a bridge.  Ouch.

Remember our New Years Resolutions post and how I needed to really focus on getting my “work-out” on this year?  Well, it’s been tough, but I’ve kept to it…for the past two weeks anyway.  Setting and keeping health and exercise goals is difficult but I’ve found that keeping myself accountable is possible by tracking my progress and leaning on my support group.  And today, I’m going to share with you how I’m staying motivated.

Workout03
5 miles and a wall hand stand. Double ouch.

Nike+ App – I have been using the Nike+ app for years and have always loved how it tracks my runs.  And now, there is a “Coach” feature which allows you to select training programs depending on your distance and stamina goals.  I’m utilizing the 10K Intermediate Program so I can increase my speed for a 10K and then prepare for a half marathon race.  Oh, and the geek in me loves all of the charts and maps available for every run!  Also, there is a sense of community with this app and you can add other runners and compete with them through different challenges.

Workout06
Post workout @ the gym with my sister

Gym Buddies a.k.a. People Who Call You Out for Being Lazy – I’m lucky enough to have my sisters and several friends that also have workout goals in mind this year.  With the encouragement of my workout buddies, I’ve found that I have ventured out of my comfort zone and tried several new workout classes at my gym including kickboxing, zumba and core classes.  So, instead of scheduling happy hours with these family members or friends, we are penciling in workouts together.  See how that works?

Workout05
Tiny hotel workout room? No problem as long as there’s a treadmill!

Plan Ahead – I plan my workouts ahead of time and typically have a run, class or bootcamp session on my calendar five to six days of the week.  I set out my workout clothes every night to avoid wasting time in the mornings.  And this past weekend, we went out of town so I made sure to pack several workout outfits and made it a priority to run on the treadmill at the hotel and then on the beach the next morning.  I focus on short term goals for the week and reflect of progress I am making each day.  I also avoid obsessing over the scale because I know it took almost a year to put on 10 pounds and it could take a while to get it off.

Workout02
We <3 the beach!  A morning run on the beach was delicious.

Instagram – I love any app that organizes the internet for me.  And I LOVE Instagram because there is a community at my fingertips who cheers my runs, provides encouragement, and keeps me accountable for my progress.  I recently shared my goal dress that I bought from Bloomindale’s on a post and received encouraging words from another runner.  I also use instagram to challenge my sisters to different workouts, including my attempt at a backbend/bridge posted at the beginning of this post.  That’s the competitive streak in me.  Hehe.

Workout04
red inspiration

I know I have a long way to go before I reach my health goals, but I feel really good about how I’m approaching my exercise routine this year.  Whether it’s running on a Friday night, or waking up at 4:45 AM to make my bootcamp class, I’ve found several ways to keep myself accountable and motivated.  What kind of apps do you use for your workouts?  What keeps you motivated?  Share with us how you say “pass” on happy hour and hit the gym instead.

Cheers,

Elisa Sig

What My Marriage Is Not

In April 2014 I walked down the aisle of a church with 12-15 friends and a couple of family members looking on. I married the most patient, kind, considerate, and wonderful man. In April 2015 I did it again, with the same man and with 40 friends and family looking on from a beach in Mexico. We have a little joke when things get crazy, “You married this, twice!” In the short time we have been married I have learned a few things. I am no expert by any means but this is what I do know.

wedding

Marriage isn’t all skittles and rainbows. One of my best friends told me this years ago but I didn’t understand it fully until I met the hubs. I don’t want skittles and rainbows all the time. That would be boring and scary. If all I ever had was skittles and rainbows I wouldn’t know how my husband would react when the world is shit storms and licorice. I now know how he will respond when loved ones get terribly sick and pass away, when I lose my job, when I am stressed to the point of tears at that stupid job, when you have to break up with friends or family, when the finances get tight, or when life gives you lemons and no vodka. I also know how he will react when he makes me do something absolutely terrifying like jumping off a cliff in New Zealand. I cherish the good times but also the bad because in those times you see a persons true character.

jump

Marriage isn’t about water bottles. One of our biggest fights as a couple thus far started out about a water bottle. What I learned (& I think he did too) was that when you keep things in and don’t communicate, it gets worse. I have always said communication was a key ingredient to a successful relationship and I didn’t know how true that was until I was married. I also know that can mean picking your battles wisely. There have been times when I was irritated at something insignificant and wanted to react and “communicate” but I have learned that if I give it some time and thought, I usually realize it wasn’t about the ‘water bottle’ but something I needed to let go of because it wasn’t worth bringing up. Communicate what is important to improving your relationship and let go of the rest.

us

 

Marriage isn’t about how you load the dishwasher. If you know anything about me, you know I can be strong headed, bossy, and somewhat of a control freak, in the most loving way possible of course. I usually think I know what is best and tend to ‘correct’ those who don’t do things my way. I had always heard that couples will sometimes fight over the dumbest of things and I found that out one night early on in our relationship after my wonderful husband loaded the dishwasher. I of course told him he did it incorrectly and showed him my way (aka the right way). What I learned that night is that there are two ways to load a dishwasher, just like there are two ways to skin a cat, and that neither are right or wrong they are just different. In attempting to keep the silly fights at bay we also have our own toothpaste so the other one doesn’t squeeze it wrong, when we make the bed I get more of the sheets because he ends up stealing them, and when we build the new house we will have a 3-car garage because I tend to park more in the middle. Learning to compromise on the little things makes it easier to compromise on the big things.

ocd

When I was young (& albeit a little dumb) I thought I wanted a husband that drove a certain car, had a certain type of job, did this or that, came from here or there and a few dozen other ridiculous things. What I have learned is that God knew what I needed and gave me a man that grounds me when I get irrational, calms me when I get impatient, and lets me run like a headless chicken but stops me before I jump off the cliff.

What are the biggest lessons you have learned from marriage or a relationship? We are only a year-ish in so I will gladly take any pointers you have to offer.

Amanda Sig

2016: 3NonBlondes Make Their Resolutions

It is that time of year again! Each New Year we make plans for the upcoming 365 days – how we will change bad habits, or goals we want to achieve. Not everyone participates in this annual ritual, but I’ve found it is a great way to set my focus for the year. This year I even convinced my blogging cohorts into joining in on the fun. So read on to see the plans we have made for ourselves for 2016.

For me, resolutions are more about putting focus on things in your life. There are so many different directions we have to go in each day, adding focus to just a few areas really helps me to make some progress in those. I try to switch up the focus areas each year, but some of them do repeat while I continue toward my goals. Here are my 2016 focus areas:

1 – Sewing – I really enjoy it, but it tends to get pushed down the to-do list first when things start getting busy. This year I’d like to (finally) finish this skirt I’m working on, plus take a draping course at Petite Atelier. A longer term goal is to construct a top using the skills I learned in the 2nd sewing course I took in 2015.

2 – Health – This is probably going to be a focus every year until I quit making resolutions. My goals are around being more comfortable in my own skin. That includes things like fitting into my pants (hellooooo Christmas meals), eating well so that I feel energized, and getting enough rest. I also need to schedule my first ever mammogram, which I’ve been procrastinating on since late 2015. I’m sure Amanda will be happy to remind me about that one!

3 – Career learning – I put this one in almost every year, but this year I’m going to put my focus toward improving skill sets where I’m weak. I usually focus on achieving a certification in something I enjoy working on, so the studying and testing part is usually fun. However, this year I’m going to tackle some practical networking skills that I’ve long avoided. It will really be an asset in my current job and I’m sure any future position I consider as well. There will probably be a future post about losing my hair trying to understand some concept!

4 – Mindfulness – This one is specifically for when I am spending time with family or friends. My brain is often making to-do lists in the background or worrying about something I need to take care of. Through meditation and practice I hope to put the focus on the people I am with, and not the chores I need to tackle.

Kendra Sig

It has been several years since I made New Year’s resolutions. Not because I lack bad habits or goals, but only because I couldn’t pinpoint exactly how and what I wanted to improve.  This year, it has become very clear to me that I need to focus and have some specific goals for 2016 since 2015 was all over the place.

1- Family – Spending time with my family will continue to be a priority for me.  In the New Year, I want to do things with my family that makes us spend time together while also giving back.  I recently took my seven year-old son to a Meals on Wheels outing through an organization called WeeVolunteer.  They organize volunteering opportunities for preschool and elementary school age kids with local Dallas charitable organizations.  I hope to take Isabella to a volunteer opportunity soon and make it a family outing.

My goal is for my family to volunteer at least once a month.

It’s never too early to show my very spoiled children the world around them is bigger than our very comfortable north Dallas suburb.

meals on wheels
Meals on Wheels Deliveries with Antonio

2 – Health – Ohmyfreakinggosh I have gained at least 10 lbs during the past 8 months.  It’s time to hit the re-set button and focus on the health of my soul, mind and body.  Similar to Kendra’s meditation exercises, I typically start my day by reading a daily scripture from Our Daily Bread.  It helps set the tone of my day.  What I have failed at doing in 2015 is sticking to a regular exercising routine.  I want to continue my bootcamp class and also add a training program for running a half marathon.  I used to run 2 half marathons a year and call myself a “runner”.  I am embarrassed to say the last time I wore my running pants for the actual purpose of running was… around December 20th.  I ran a total of 2.77 miles in December compared to 54.4 miles in August.

bacon
Celebrating December 30th: International Bacon Day

Time to get in shape!  And of course the pain in exercising would not be able to pay off if I don’t also eat clean, so I may have to cut back on the bubbly just a tad.

My goal is to run a 10K in the Spring, a half marathon in the Winter, and eat healthy year round.

In the past, I utilized the Hal Higdon Training Program to train for a half marathon.  I will be utilizing Nike+ app as well as the Hal Higdon Training Programs to guide and record my progress.

3 – Career – In the year 2015, my career took some unexpected but welcoming changes.  I changed employers after working for the same company for almost 8 years, for an opportunity that fit all my criteria – compensation, location and flexibility.

It has been an incredible opportunity for me and I want for 2016 to be the year I really prove myself as a tremendous asset to my new company.

To quote Sheryl Sandberg, “What would you do if you weren’t afraid?”.  I’m going to lean waaaay in during 2016.

What are your goals and priorities for 2016?  Share your New Year’s resolutions with us in the comments section!

Cheers,

Elisa Sig

 

I guess my first resolution would be to procrastinate less but seeing as how I am typing this on January 3rd at 11:44pm, hours before we are posting, I guess I already broke that resolution. Actually, I quit making resolutions years ago because I could never keep them. I don’t think I made it even one month with a former resolution. I instead make more of a wish list. Kind of a ‘it would be nice if this actually sticks for a week’ list. So I guess in reality my only resolution I have ever kept would be that I don’t make resolutions. With that being said, I do have some great wishes for 2016.

I wish to be healthier! I know that sounds like everyone else’s resolution but for a girl who couldn’t even sacrifice her addiction of Chick-Fil-A for Lent one year, the struggle is real. I have a very bad habit of not planning a head and then getting hangry and grabbing the closest fast food possible. With the building of the new house and actually trying to save money for the move, I will be working towards planning meals and eating at home more often and maybe even packing a sandwich or two so I am not running to the closest Chick-Fil-A when I get hungry. Besides, my new, beautiful kitchen should be motivation in and of itself. Wish: cook at least 2-3 meals at home each week and take lunches more often.

I wish to fit into my favorite jeans! The old saying ‘fat and happy’ definitely took on a real meaning in 2015 for me.  Before anyone gets their panties in a bunch, I know I am not fat. But I am not healthy. What do they call it these days? Skinny fat? Whatever. I hear all the time that women should “be happy with their body, whatever size.” And yes, I think we should all be more content with our figures, but I know my body and this isn’t “my size.” I have been lucky to be the same size for all of my adult life with the exception of the last year and half or so. I know that we want to have kids soon and I want to be around for them for as long as possible. By working out and doing the previous resolution, I should accomplish two things, be healthy and fit into those jeans that make my butt look awesome! Wish: participate in the bootcamp I am signing up for at least twice a week and walk at least 1-2 times a week.

I wish to grow my friendships! I am lucky to know some of the greatest women in my friend circles. I have also come to realize that there are some friendships that are not beneficial to me. I intend to grow and strengthen the relationships that I feel are reciprocated and spend less time in the drama/one-sided relationships. Then there are those acquaintances that I think will grow into great friendships. The takers are no longer going to waste my time and the givers are going to get more of my time (when my hubby is traveling for work, he usually gets first dibs of my time). Life is too short to be unhappy and I fully intend on being as happy as possible. Also, I am 36, and ain’t nobody got time for drama. Wish: more girls dinners (at home, I will cook!) or more wine nights. 😉

I wish to be consistent with these “wishes”. Maybe by them not being such hard and firm “resolutions” but instead soft and kind “wishes” I will actually be more successful than in years past. I know there will be times when life gets busy but I will do my best this year to get back on the wagon as quickly as possible when I fall off. I know with my family and friends by my side and keeping me accountable I will have a great 2016!

Thank you for being a part of our beginning, here is to a beautiful 2016 with all of our loyal readers. (Thanks moms, dads, aunts, uncles, cousins, and friends!)

Cheers,Amanda Sig