...because home doesn't happen overnight.

Thanks for playing along last week. All surround sound bashing aside, it was a good reminder that design involves figuring out a way to make both people in a relationship happy with the home they share. It’s not always easy – but definitely possible!

Onto more pressing issues this week…

Truth: I miss pizza. Since going dairy free nearly two months ago for the sake of our sensitive lil’ Mabrey, I’ve found some palatable alternatives to most of my favorite dairy foods. And it’s not nearly as difficult as I thought it would be. But the one thing I’m having a hard time giving up is pizza. Or, as HH likes to call it, ‘the perfect food.’ One day last week while driving in the car, out of nowhere the pizza devil voice in my head said “What I wouldn’t give for a warm, gooey, greasy, cheesy pizza.” Ugh.

I’ve substituted most of my dairy cheese with goat cheese…on salads, pitas, tacos, crackers, etc. Don’t get me wrong. It’s delicious. But it can’t compare to melted, stretchy mozzarella or cheddar. Oh, cheese, why must you fall into the dairy category?

The chicken bacon artichoke take ‘n’ bake pizza from Papa Murphy’s helps ease the pain a little. I get it with olive oil and garlic {instead of the creamy garlic sauce} and without parmesan. It’s incredible.

I eat it with a dollop of Toffuti’s better than sour cream. Don’t let that picture fool you. Those were my first two slices. Three more pieces quickly followed.

While the artichoke pizza is delish, it does nothing for my true pizza cravings. Last night I dreamt I was eating real pizza with real cheese. There was a string of cheese from my mouth to the pizza slice I was eating and it kept getting longer and longer and I kept slurping it up. It was never ending. Never ending melted cheese. That’s what fills my dreams nowadays.

Truth: That’s me today. Coming to you *almost* live from my kitchen. I have yet to organize the glass front cabinets.

Truth: I haven’t worked out once since Mabrey was born. And I desperately want to. Not to lose weight. Good genes, exclusive breastfeeding and eliminating dairy from my diet has helped get me back to my pre-pregnancy weight. But the consistency of my body {hello, doughy stomach and flat mom butt, I’m talking to you guys}, is like nothing I’ve experienced before. I sure haven’t bounced back from #3 like I did with #1 and #2. I’m not overly self conscious of my postpartum body, it’s just something that I’d like to work on. Plus, I always feel better when I’m working out regularly. I have more energy. We take family walks and I’m constantly moving doing something with one of the kids or working on the house. But those activities don’t really target my belly or butt.

How can I not find 30 minutes twice weekly to do some toning exercises?! That would be a good start. Any suggestions? I tried doing squats while calming Mabrey before I lay her down for naps but it turns out she thinks going up and down is funny. And it’s hard to ‘shhhhhhh’ when I’m breathing heavily. Now, there’s a visual.

Oh well. Good thing I have a baby to hold in front of my belly.

Truth: If I hear that damn gummy bear song one more time, I will rip my ears off. How can such a bad song be so catchy?!

images: Dana Miller for House*Tweaking

60 Comments

27.August.2012

I’ve seen ‘goat mozzarella’ before at my farmers market. Wonder if it’s stretchier than regular ol goat cheese? Might be worth trying. :)

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replied on August 27th, 2012

Trader Joe’s (if you have one near by) has goat brie, cheddar and gouda! They are great options for pizza!

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Dairy is hard to give up. I used to be a dairy fiend, but I gave up most of it and feel a lot better because of it. Pizza is one of my only indulgences though! When I was a kid I used to hate cheese.. I’m not sure when things changed, but nothing beats gooey cheese. Mmmmm

p.s. I’m very very tempted to click on that gummy bear song because I have no idea what it is, but your tone suggests I’d better not lol

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replied on August 27th, 2012

Don’t do it!

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27.August.2012

Truth: I don’t know the gummy bear song, so I’m definitely not going to listen to it! :)

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27.August.2012

Just wanted to pop in to say two things – first, you look great! And second, have you tried the Amy’s frozen pizza with soy cheese? It tastes almost like the real thing. So much so that before I started ignoring my lactose intolerance, I emailed them and asked them if they sell it separately (they don’t!). Definitely try it!

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27.August.2012

have you looked at the site nanoworkout.com? i use some of their tips in the office to get little slices (no pizza pun intended) in throughout the day!

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27.August.2012

Our new family work out is bike riding. We have a 30 mile bike trail within a mile of our house. On Fridays, when I’m not working, and my husband isn’t working, we drop the oldest off at school and take the younger two (4 and 7 months) on a bike ride. They ride in a trailer that is mesh enclosed. Very easy to tow them, and they love it. Once our oldest sheds the training wheels, we’ll make a trip of it with her along. Between watching what goes in my mouth and biking, I weigh about 20 lbs LESS than when I got pregnant with #3!

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27.August.2012

I’ve heard really good things about Daiya, although I haven’t tried it. It’s supposed to melt really well, like dairy cheese. And nutritional yeast is great and cheesy tasting, although admittedly does not have texture going for it.

Jillian Michaels’s workouts, as cliche as it may be, I find efficient and effective. She combines strength and cardio in a quick (under 30 minute) workout, so you hit everything in one session.

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27.August.2012

We use Diya brand cheese to make our vegan pizza.I highly recommend it. It’s very very good for not actually being dairy cheese. You can usually find it in organic sections in the grocery store. It’s shredded mozzarella and they have a few other flavors. Comes in a bag. LOVE IT! PS. You look amazing girl! My little girl is 16 months and I haven’t lost my 15 lbs yet! It’s killing me in many ways ahhh. I look like I’m in the early stages of pregnancy and I just feel uncomfortable. I never knew how hard it was to loose weight!

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27.August.2012

Yes, you do look great! But I definitely know what you mean about the “consistency” of your body not being what you want it to. I’ve had a back/hip injury for the last year plus, and though I’ve kept my weight in check my muscle tone and fitness level have gone in the toilet. It’s crappy, especially as I am a fitness person by job.

Anyway, check out my blog, wishfit for some workout ideas. You might like this one: http://wp.me/p1ClR0-64

It’s about fitting in a workout while at the park with your kids. There are lots of body weight exercises you can slip in to a walk (think 30 sec. intervals of squats, lunges, jumping jacks, butt kickers, tricep dips, mountain climbers or push-ups), that will start to address muscle tone. Also, you might think about getting a cheap set of resistance bands. You can mimic a lot of gym/weight exercises either at home, or again, at the park.

This post, http://wp.me/p1ClR0-cd

might give you some ideas.

Hope that helps a little. Good luck fighting the pizza cravings!

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27.August.2012

I absolutely love your site! I like the family bike riding idea above ;-) and look forward to the same routine w/ my kids and husband!
On another note, I spy a really cool leather bag! Do you mind sharing the source? I’ve been looking for a sturdy satchel that’s not too big!

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27.August.2012

Bahahahha, it’s like you were writing this about me! I agree on the goat cheese – but keep looking because I managed to find one brand that had the consistency of mozzarella and melted really nice on pizza. I can’t remember what it is offhand, but I found it in the natural food aisle.

I take it Mabrey is a fan of the gummy bear song? My 11-month old LOVES it! She gets the same goofy grin every time she watches it, whether it’s the 1st or the 100th.

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I agree with Emily…Jillian Michael’s workouts are actually really good. 30 Day Shred is one of my favorites. It definitely kicks your butt in less than 30 minutes. All you need is a mat and set of hand weights. If you search on YouTube most of her videos are on there.

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27.August.2012

Would Mabrey let you do a workout video while she plays in a bouncer or something else for 20-30 minutes? The boys could have their “screen time” during that time as well. I’m six months pregnant and I work out in the morning when we first get up, while the toddler gets to watch a video or play computer games. It also makes me feel less guilty about giving him screen time, because I can justify that I’m doing something good for myself during that time! :) I absolutely love Pilates, it is my favorite toning workout. My favorite Pilates videos are from Ana Caban for Gaiam–her beginning and intermediate mat workouts offer great instruction at a pace that isn’t too slow, or too fast, even if the cinematography is not the best. Right now I’m just doing prenatal workouts though (wish I had the money right now to buy the prenatal workout video you suggested, I make do free ones on youtube, alternating between circuit routines, pilates, and yoga)

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27.August.2012

Have you considered trying raw milk cheese? My husband is lactose intolerant but can eat raw milk and raw milk cheese with no problems at all. Maybe that would be easier for you and Mabrey to digest than the pasteurized cheese/milk products?

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27.August.2012

I feel your pain – I am lactose intolerant AND I also believe that pizza is the perfect food! I let myself indulge every once in a while, but I always pay for it.

As for quick workouts, you might want to check out http://blogilates.com/ Cassey (the woman behind the website) posts quick 5-minute workouts (pilates-inspired) to target all different areas, some longer, some shorter, but lots of variety and really really effective. Be warned: she’s very energetic, but super sweet and her workouts are killer! Good luck!! :)

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27.August.2012

I actually weigh less than I did when I got pregnant with my little one and I’m trying to lose more just so I can keep up with her better. After being on bed rest I wanted to be working out all the time as soon as I had her. The most fun way I’ve found to work out with her is I put her in her crib, then play peek-a-boo while doing sit ups for about ten minutes. After that, I do leg lifts and she thinks it’s absolutely hilarious watching my legs so up and down from her crib (she’s almost eight months so now she scoots over to the side to watch more). Once it cools down again, I’m going to be taking her on more walks/jogs. Oh, and for arm exercises, I “fly” her up and down which I feel like is basically as good of a workout as doing bench presses!

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27.August.2012

I laughed so hard reading this post…That’s so my life and that gummy bear song…grrrr…I have been trying to do a “Fun park work out”, while i go to the park with my 2 year old she goes up and down the structure: I do lunges on the steps of the structure, pull up on the monkey bars, chin ups as well, sit ups, Squats using the bench as a marker and step ups for the butt as well on the bench. I use the bench for push ups too. ( I do three sets of 20). If she lets me, i can manage 20 minutes. If Mabry, will happily giggle on a blanket beside you, it could work! But with your boys as well at the park, this could be wishful thinking! And you definitely look crazy doing it! Good luck.

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27.August.2012

I’m with Martha on the Pilates with Ana Caban. I think the beginner video was only 15 minutes. Once you know the basic moves, you can do it without the video, and shave off a few extra minutes that is taken up by instructions.

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27.August.2012

Have you tried 8 minute abs on youtube? Here is the link: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=sWjTnBmCHTY

The video says to do it every day, but my experience is that you get better results doing it 4-5 times a week. And there is also a 8 minute bun. Don’t let the 90s wibe fool you, these videos are great:)

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replied on August 27th, 2012

Can’t wait to check them out!

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27.August.2012

Truth: Mabrey is a cutie-pie!!

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27.August.2012

You are too cute. I hear you on the post-partum changes… the only way I get to work out (and am currently training for a marathon) is getting up before the rest of my family. of course, i am also not breastfeeding– I have a 2 and a 4 year old. I guess it takes time.

Also Mmmm pizza. Now I know what I want for dinner. Hope I don’t make you too jealous. :)

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27.August.2012

i agree with the daiya suggestions! when we went vegan (for about 6 months) daiya was my go to “cheese” for pizza and quessadillas. they have several flavors and it now even comes in a block form which is great for slicing on sandwiches or just with a cracker and jam. try it!

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27.August.2012

First of all – you look fabulous :) My go-to for quick and VERY efficient workouts has been the Nike Training Club app on my iphone. It’s free, the workouts don’t require special equipment, and you can listen to your itunes while you exercise. There are 30 and 45 min workouts of varying levels and 15-min workouts that target specific areas (butt, legs, shoulders, abs). Have fun!

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replied on August 27th, 2012

Great! Thanks, Sarah.

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27.August.2012

I feel your pain and cravings! My little almost 2 year old is allergic to the casein in dairy, so I was off all dairy (and eggs) when nursing, and she still cannot eat either dairy or eggs. We have found coconut milk to be a tasty and fantastic alternative to milk, but have yet to try alternative cheeses. Thanks for your idea with the Papa Murphy’s pizza. We are going to try that next time. I was excited to see the Daiya recommendations and I am going to see if I can get one of our stores to carry it. I hesitate to use soy, because I think too much is not good, but Daiya says it is soy free! Good luck! It is definitely worth it.

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27.August.2012

I love to hear about other people’s dreams and no doubt your dream is very related to your cravings. Good for you for giving up something like dairy for someone like Mabrey… so worth it! BTW, when I saw your picture, the first thing I thought was, “Wow, she is so beautiful!” You really are!! You must be really short too because you look sooooo tiny by those cabinets.

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27.August.2012

I am in the same boat with exercise. With three kids 6, 4, and almost 1, it’s so hard to fit in exercise. I’m like you – back to my pre-pregnancy weight but not my fitness level. And we are better moms when we get exercise, aren’t we?

I’ve found the only thing that works for me is this: I put the little one in the stroller and take the older kids across the street to the park on their bikes – they ride bikes in the baseball diamond while I run laps around the ballfield with the stroller. It isn’t pretty (usually they complain mightily and I am pathetic with my running) but its something and I feel strong afterward. It is hard to be consistent, too. But the payoff of a good mood is worth it when I can make it happen.

I did try workout videos but I feel ridiculous and sometimes I need the fresh air, ya know?

Good luck finding something that works for you. :)

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27.August.2012

This doesn’t address dairy substitutions or workouts. Speaking from experience, there is just something about the third kid, when you find the adults out numbered in the house, that makes all the things I used to find a few minutes to accomplish next to impossible to squeeze into my day. I’ve yet to figure out if it’s because my attention is divided in one more direction or if it’s the new level of fatigue I reached once the third child arrived. If you figure it out let me know.

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27.August.2012

Ha! My son was listening to the gummy bear song yesterday.. funny that you’d bring it up. I agree with you- working out is so hard with kids around but like you, I feel SO much better when I do. I’ve started going (sometimes… very unregularly :) at 5 before our son gets up. It’s a hassle and it cuts our nights short sometimes, but it does feel great.

How long does your pediatrician (or allergist?) want you to wait before trying dairy again? My sister had to go off it for awhile when she was nursing (same thing, her baby girl was in major pain with it) but after a few months she tried a tiny bit of butter and was fine. So she slowly added in other things and it wasn’t an issue. Not her little girl is a little over a year and eats dairy too. It might not be the same for Mabrey, but maybe!!

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replied on August 28th, 2012

Our pediatrician recommends not introducing dairy until at least 9 months old. The longer we wait the better chance Mabrey has of not reacting negatively.

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27.August.2012

I loved Jillian Michael’s 30 Day Shred when I first started back to working out. Good combination of strength/cardio all done in 30 min for less than $10 dvd. After that I ‘graduated’ to Butt Bible. Strength training mostly (which will help ‘tone’) but heart rate goes up with quick routine. Shortest videos are 20 min, longest are 40 min. Free on youtube or you can buy the dvds.

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27.August.2012

I started following Zuzana Light (http://www.youtube.com/user/ZuzkaLight) about a year ago and her workouts are intense, but short, with most being between 10-16 minutes. The muscle tone I’ve developed from just following her workouts is amazing! And she’s very upbeat and fun!

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27.August.2012

You being in this photo of your kitchen gives everything a different perspective. Your kitchen looks bigger with people standing in it.

Yay for breastfeeding! I had my 3rd about the same time you did, have done nothing, have NO butt now too, but am smaller than before baby due to breastfeeding. God designed that as a nice gift to Mommies!

Goat cheese… yuck! I live in Central America and that junk is on everything. Eating that for your baby is LOVE.

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27.August.2012

Awwww, I remember the dairy-free months. I felt hungry all the time! I also couldn’t eat beef (same cow protein as milk), and my first meal when I could finally eat that stuff again was a cheeseburger and huge milkshake. Sooo good.

As for exercising, I wish I was able to exercise with a new baby, but after four babies, my track record shows that it just doesn’t happen if I’m breastfeeding or if I don’t sleep through the night (due to breastfeeding, night waking, or someone being sick). I just don’t have the energy, and its true that exercise does help give one more energy but that’s my history of non-exercise over 12 years, unless its 6-12 months between weaning and getting pregnant again. I’ve just had to be less hard on myself and realize my limitations physically, and that they aren’t permanent!

Good luck to you!

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27.August.2012

As many others have said, try Daiya. Their block cheese is especially convincing and melts really well in a faux grilled “cheese” sandwich.

For whatever reason, I love carmelized onions as a substitute for cheese on pizzas. They create a fantastic savory flavor and texture that make cheese seem less necessary. And I say this as someone with a serious love for cheese.

There are also several companies that make cheddar and gouda-like goat milk cheeses. Check out Trader Joe’s or Whole Foods if you have them in the area.

And you look fantastic. I think most of us would die to have your post-baby figure. No need to hide behind Mabrey!

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27.August.2012

Jillian Michaels. 30 Day Shred. Less than $10 at Target. 20 min…DONE!

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27.August.2012

You should try bodyrock.tv for your workouts, they are about 12 minutes each and get you sweating like crazy.

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27.August.2012

You look amazing. I managed to not lose any weight after my last one was born, except the actual weight of the baby and the placenta. She’s now 14 months old, and I’m finally going to lose the weight. 6 lbs down and counting :o)

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You look absolutely beautiful! But I totally understand about wanting to get back to pre-pregnancy firmness. The best way I’ve found is doing a BodyPump class once or twice a week at the gym. It hits every imaginable muscle group, and you don’t have to think about it. You just show up, put in the time and then walk away. There is considerable soreness at first, but you start feeling stronger quickly! Best of luck. xoxo

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27.August.2012

Try wholefoods vegan pizza if your store make’s fresh pizza…I was surprised that it tasted good.
That was the thing I missed the most too but I just tried to hAve creamy pasta…avocado cilantro pasta always helped me.

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27.August.2012

At first glance I thought you were posting pictures of a babysitter (maybe a 14-year-old). If you hadn’t mentioned you have three children, I wouldn’t believe it.

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27.August.2012

My 6 year old loves that song and video. Luckily, he has a new favorite though. He goes on YouTube and watches the theme song to Ninjago by The Fold. Thank goodness! You look great, and your lil girl is precious. My daughter is 12 days old, and I’m itching to get back in shape as well.

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28.August.2012

Wow, you look great (and so tiny)! There are definitely good recommendations for work outs, but you should also check out Tone It Up.

http://www.toneitup.com/fitness.php?category=Fitness

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I have a 3 month old and I’m suffering from the same mushy belly and flat butt. I just went back to work last week so my time is limited and I’m not working out either BUT the other day I laid on the couch with my baby on my belly and did crunches. He thought it was the funniest thing on earth. Every time my face got close to his and he would rise from my stomach moving his face lit up. I actually kept doing them long after I wanted to stop because he was so happy. Now if I can remember to do that everyday… :)

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28.August.2012

WOW – I didn’t realize how huge those cabinets were until I saw you sitting in front of them! I love them :)
And the both of you look beautiful sitting on that stool :)

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replied on August 28th, 2012

They are HUGE! I have so much room for storage but really need to organize those cabinets. That’s the first thing I’m doing when Everett starts pre-K in two weeks!!!!

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28.August.2012

Here’s my advice. Everything in moderation. Even though you had such fast results from stopping cow’s milk, you have to wonder if it wasn’t just a fluke. Literature has shown that it would take longer than a day for you to see a physical change in baby Mabrey. Around four months, babies go through a very fussy period- some babies are worse than others (take my first born… yeesh!). Research has shown that the four month age range is when the natural bacteria is building up in their little guts- and it can make them angry and gassy! Try taking probiotics and introduce cow’s milk slowly into your diet; it’s not unhealthy and its easier to buy and cheaper than goat’s milk.
Also? I’m a Family Nurse Practitioner and I’ve seen this many, many times. Give it a try.

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28.August.2012

Hands down, my favorite strength training program is ChaLean Extreme. It’s a 3 month program and the strength training segments are around 35 min long, 3x a week. I lost 100 lbs with the help of this program! I am now a Beachbody coach, run a fitness group and am helping people to achieve their goals.
The programs are a little pricey, but completely worth it. I would love to send you this program (for free!) if you would document your progess on here. Let me know! :)

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28.August.2012

First time commenter I think, long time reader. :) I think you look great!! But I will tell you about a workout called TTapp that I love. It can be short and super effective especially if you pay close attention to form. The website is kinda a pain to navigate, but they do have some free workouts posted. They look deceptively easy. It is a great work out for mama’s that only have so much time! I don’t work for them, just have had great success myself with TTapp. :)
Anyway, mabrey is adorable and so are you!

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29.August.2012

Have you tried Daiya dairy-free cheese? It’s pricey, but a little goes a long way and it tastes almost exactly the same as regular cheese. I get it whenever it’s on sale at Kroger, and the first thing I do is make a pizza with it!

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30.August.2012

Truth: Am obsessed with you, your blog, your home and your babies. I pretend like we are friends, because I gave birth to twins around the same time that you gave birth.
Truth: I have also not worked out since giving birth (besides walking/pushing the stroller) but have good genes, but my flat but is not cute – I used to have a nice little round butt – where did it go? I am secretly convinced that it is now living on my kids checks – the ones on their faces… :)

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replied on August 31st, 2012

Ha! We’ll be flat butt buddies!

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30.August.2012

OMG…has the gummy bear song hit your house too? Seriously, it makes me want to totally get rid of computers all together. I even tried deleting the youtube app and my 5 yr old STILL found it! Ugh!

That pizza sounds delicious…never tried that one before even though we LOVE Papa Murpheys. I must say though, mine will have cheese still. ;P Just wait now, my next will have the milk sensitivity, lol. Thanks for the suggestion though!

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02.September.2012

I haven’t read in a while, but just checked in and noticed you’re dairy free for Mabrey. Just wanted to offer encouragement as I went dairy, soy and egg free for 6 months when EBFing my 3rd son. It was a challenge and I tip my hat to you for finding creative food options – I swear I ate the same 10 dishes the whole time! I was able to reintroduce the allergens into my diet one at a time ending in milk starting when he was 6 months old with no problems and continued to BF for 15 months.

Also, I definitely felt a bigger difference in my body with #3 than I did with the first two. We’re two years pp and I’m still working on toning. I’m sure pushing 40 doesn’t help. Hang in there!

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06.September.2012

I hope you know that you look incredible. I’m only on baby number one, but she’s 3 months old already and my carpet cleaner today asked me when I’m due – and that’s after 2 months of working out faithfully. Not all are blessed equally! I understand the difficulty reconciling to new body truths, though. You have a wonderful blog and a beautiful family. Thanks for sharing!

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10.September.2012

Oh my gosh you crack me up! I just read out loud to my hubby your last part of this post. I too have tried the squats before nap time and the same things happens here:) I am 4 months post-partum, and like you, am back to the pre-pregnancy weight- but the body is just soft! I am planning on running once it gets at least decent out here in HOT AZ! Anyway, just wanted to say congrats of the sweetie, and you look fabulous:)
Adrianne

Dream Book Design

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14.September.2012

I am never one to comment on blogs, but I absolutely love yours and can completely relate to the lack of stringy melted cheese!!! I introduce to you Daiya cheese!! They keep coming out with more options and I swear to you, it melts! My mom and I both cannot eat milk products and we swear by this brands cheeses. Whole Foods carries it here, but you should check their website to see where you can get it. http://www.daiyafoods.com

Good luck!

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