New Blog, New Me

Can you see? LASIK detailed

So something exciting is happening on Saturday, Im getting LASIK! I have had several people ask me about the experience so I figured a blog post would be the easiest way for me to tell about it. I cant remember anything that Ive wanted longer then this, Ive been waiting for 12 years; ever since my optometrist first told me about it when I was 16. I had such bad vision, even back then. He said I needed to wait until I was about 21, when my vision stopped changing and my prescription evened out. Well 21 came and went but my vision continued to get worse so I wanted to wait and not rush the process.

So long glasses and contacts

So long glasses and contacts

In 2008 my husband had the LASIK procedure, happy college graduation to him, he had great results which just fueled my desire to get it done on myself. I remember sitting in the doctors office waiting for him to get out of surgery. His vision was just as bad as mine and as soon as he walked out – boom he could see! It was crazy. Recovery for him was not too bad, he had to wear these funny shields over his eyes at first to protect them. (Im pretty sure I have a picture of him, right after surgery, at home napping with the shields taped to his face. Hahaha. I wont share them here, though, he would kill me.) It took a few days to completely heal but afterwards he was good as gold. If you’d ask him he would tell you that it was a little painful. 7 years later and he hasn’t had any problems or issues.

I was hoping to have the procedure in 2011. I had a consult with the same doctors office that my husband used, they went through the testing and then at the end of the appointment I sat down with them to go over typical pre-surgery questions to determine if I was a candidate. How long have you worn your glasses/contacts? Do you take any medication? Have you ever had any eye trauma or an infection? … Could you be pregnant? –> Me pregnant? No! Nope. Nuh uh. Not pregnant. But I guess the lady could read my face as she got to that question. Well technically … I guess it could be a possibility ;) LOL. So she said we would hold off on going any further until I could test and confirm that I was not pregnant. — I rushed home, took a test, and discovered YES I was pregnant with baby 2! Woopsie. After calling her back and letting her know that the test was positive, she then told me that I was not a candidate for LASIK at that time, to wait until after delivery plus a few months to give my hormones time to settle down and my eyes a period to stabilize. Apparently pregnancy can make your vision change. I was kind of bummed. I mean, hurray for being pregnant. But. Wait longer for the surgery?!

So now after one more pregnancy and giving my eyes over a year to stabilize from that, its finally my turn!

What does the process look like? After I called and set up the first appointment, my doctor emailed a video series on the procedures and recovery. These were pretty inclusive and answered a lot of my questions. I thought it was a great way to inform me of what I will expect. Next I had my first consult, during which I had my vision checked and they give me a bunch of material to read, and they detail the procedure along with answering any questions you have. For me the was a piece of cake; they sat me down in front of different machines and had me look into the machine while holding my eye open and keeping very still, while the machine took a picture or particular measurement. It took about 20 mins, maybe.

However, for my husband the testing was a different experience. He was nervous going into it (where I was not) and during the part where they had him sit down in front of the machines, he could not hold his eye open big/long enough or sit very still. Which was not too much of a problem other then it taking longer for them to get the proper picture or measurement, because they had to repeat the test over and over.

Once all of the testing is done they do a typical eye exam, you know the one where they put that funny thing in front of your face and ask you if you can see the letters on the wall. The doctor answered all of my questions and decided how we should proceed because LASIK is not the only eye surgery offered, there are other similar procedures and the doctor talked with me about which one would be best. After I left the doctor’s exam I then went to the office to talk turkey… Pricing and payment info. No this is not a cheap thing! They do offer credit card type payment plans but you can go ahead and pay the full amount day of the surgery. We scheduled the surgery and all of the pre-op/post-op appointments. And she notified me that I had to take out my contacts and wear glasses 2 weeks before surgery date.

The second appointment I had yesterday, they redid all of the tests and eye exam – to see what the true results would be from me being out of my contacts and wearing glasses this past month. In my past blog about LASIK, I talked about how the doctor was not sure if I would be a good candidate for this because of scar tissue on my left eye. At the end of this appointment my doctor answered the big question – Yes I should be fine to have LASIK. Woot!

Pre-op instructions are pretty simple. I have to get 2 different eye drop medicines filled before surgery. The woman said they run $150 each (ouch) but that they were including a coupon to reduce the price to $35 each. (I havent gotten these filled yet so I do not know the actual price. Im hoping it is in fact $35!) One of them I have to use the day before surgery and the morning of surgery. They also gave me some eye cleaning wipes to use right after the drops. I have to wipe across my eyes, from temple to temple. She instructed me to also take 600 mg of ibuprofen the morning of because it acts as an inflammatory. I was also told to wear super comfortable clothes on the day of the exam, that they keep the room cold and will have a blanket for me to use to keep me comfortable. (Awe how nice, a blankie!) They will give me Valium to keep me calm and stress balls to squeeze in both hands to keep me still. It will take anywhere from 2-4 hours and I should be able to see fine right after but I do need my husband to drive me home. For the post-op instructions, she told me that once I get home Im going to want to take a nap. It will feel like there is sand or eyelashes in my eye and that my eye lids will act like a natural band aid so I need to keep my eyes closed. Rest for as long as I can. Basically, this mama will be out of commission for Saturday! Full recovery takes up to a week so no make up, rubbing, or touching my eyes. I will have to use those prescription eye drops for a period of time. I did forget to ask about exercise and sweating, although I am assuming I’m not going to want to get any sweat in my eyes while they are still healing. (Can you say OUCH!)

Post-op appointment will be 1 day after and 3 days after and they will check to make sure my eyes are healing properly. After that, I’ll be good to go.

My vision is so bad now that if I take off my glasses and look across the room, I cant even see shapes or colors unless they are high contrast. The other night my hubby stood a few feet in front of me and held up his fingers to see if I could tell how many he was holding up. Nope. Sitting here on the computer, if I take my glasses off the keyboard just looks like a black blob and the screen looks like a white glowing square. Everything blurs together so much that there are no other discernible colors or shapes. Not needing glasses or contacts to see, I cant wait to know what that feels like! 


Plan my what..?

Today in my Fall into Fitness PiYo Challenge I did the Core workout. One of my favorite in the PiYo series because I know I have a bit of a mommy tummy to deal with and I want some abs! I’ve never had them before. However, along with the core exercise, diet is key to leaning out and getting those abs to show through. When I hear experts and trainers talk they consistently agree that you cant out exercise a bad diet.

I like to meal plan on Sundays, keeping in mind I need to use whats already in my kitchen … because I’m cheap and I want to go ahead and use what I already have. Here is my meal planning menu for this week. Its all animal-free, I cook enough for myself and my family and then my hubby will cook the meat for every one else (Im the soul vegetarian). For some of the meals I’m using the Beachbody Fixate cook book (so if you want a review of that particular meal or curious about ordering it ($15), shoot me a comment and I can walk you through that). I also find a lot of recipes on Pinterest! Its flooded with healthy options but you do have to pay attention to the ingredients because not all are meat free.
  • Shakeology with unsweetened coconut milk and banana
  • M- Spicy tofu and cabbage, baked sweet potato, broccoli
  • T- Fixate Zoodles with veggie tomato sauce
  • W- Cauliflower steaks with mushroom gravy and roasted sweet potatoes
  • T- Leftovers
  • F- Veggie burger, baked beans, and slaw
  • S- PB&J (lol)
  • M- Fixate chili over wheat pasta
  • T- Leftovers
  • W- Fixate stuffed bell peppers and peas
  • T- Burgers, baked beans, corn
  • F- Tofu, carrots, and green beans
  • S- Grilled veggies with brown rice
As a busy, homeschooling mom I really do not have the time or energy to cook some over the top meals but all of these are very do-able. Plus with a little prep work (cleaning and chopping veggies, batch cooking the tofu) I dont actually have to spend very much time cooking it because a lot of the work is already done. Score!
meal planning menu
Meal planning Sunday, join me! I found this super cute Meal Planning template on Pinterest to make it even easier to keep track of grocery store items and daily menu.

What if I fail?

Social media can be a fantastic tool but it can also be a big ole lie! Its super easy to post only the great moments, the good days, the times when you are spot on with your nutrition and exercise, and only showing the after pics. People only showing their highlight reel and never talking about the insecurities or challenges they face. (Well, I guess there are those people who never have battled anything difficult in their life, but I am not one of them.) I do not want to be guilty of publishing a fake version of myself which is why this post is important to me.

Today starts Week 2 of my Fall into Fitness PiYo Challenge. I have some fantastic challengers who are killing it, so far they have totally exceeded all the goals they have set for themselves. It does take a commitment in both money and time; an investment in their health and dedication to stick with the challenge for the 60 days. Along with being inspired by their awesome work, I think its important for me to be completely honest with where I am at in this challenge to: 1) show the progress you can expect, 2) help encourage others that yes I struggle too, 3) I think when you share something personal about yourself that it ties you closer to the people around you.

It’s easy to share when you’ve gotten to the finish line and can show what you’ve accomplished … but its so hard to share when you’re just at the starting point. What if I fail? What if I don’t accomplish my goals? What if I get made fun of? What if? Especially with such a sensitive topic as weight loss. Every single person has an area in life that they struggle with. My struggle just happens to be weight related and I’m fighting to overcome that. Its not a brave thing to share when you have made it to the other side of that trench and have overcome the problem. It is brave thing to share while you are in the middle of fighting to dig yourself out of the hole. And I am still in the fighting stage.

That brings me to this post. My “Before” pics, I took these last week right when I started the challenge so they are really my current pics. No trying to stand in a way that made me look super cute for the camera, no trying to suuuuck it in, no hiding. I posted the pic on my Instagram because I appreciate the support, encouraging comments and love I get there. I haven’t shared them anywhere else because I was a little … nervous.

These shorts I got 2 summers ago when I had originally lost 50lbs. I remember getting them and loving how they fit. I was so happy and confident! I tried them on at the start of this summer and I couldn’t even button them! No amount of jumping up and down, wiggling, sucking in my gut, nothing I did made these babies close! I am happy to say that now they button! So that’s progress. I was even able to get them to zip! But I would never wear them out in public because of how dreadfully uncomfortable they are. Squishing my stomach and not cute. No.

Progress Pants

So here are my Progress Pants. The scale can say whatever it wants to. I have stopped caring what the number is. But my clothes dont lie. I am determined to fit comfortably into these babies by the end of my PiYo Challenge. (Which means, yes I will be wearing white after Labor Day, ha!) Losing inches and gaining confidence, those are my goals. Even though it is a little scary to show the “Current” pic, I will because magic happens when you step outside of your comfort zone! 

How to make the best choice?

I can’t sleep! Everyone else is tucked in their nice, warm beds snoozing away and I’m on the computer typing. What a shame, not being able to sleep should not be one of the problems that a mom has. Its not fair, really. Lol. I kind of did it to myself though, the husband fixes an amazing cup of coffee and I made the mistake of having some later this afternoon. So now I’ve got a coffee buzz – but no sleep!

Something has been bothering me… What do you do when you know you’re about to make the wrong choices but you consciously do it anyways? Like that stupid cup of coffee. I knew good enough that it would keep me up later tonight then what I wanted to but I went ahead and had it anyways. (But really, mama needed her caffeine. Ha.) Or when you peruse the cookie isle at the grocery store, knowing that it wont do you any good to stand there – but you do it anyways. Then you get home and find that somehow the Oreo’s managed to find their way home with you. Woops. Did you know the serving size is 2 Oreo’s? Really. Who eats just 2?! Not me. Ever. I might have good intentions to eat just 2 but then I look down and have eaten 2 whole sleeves.

There is this constant battle between knowing what is good for you and actually doing it. I talk about this with my 10 year old all of the time but it applies to me just as much. I’ll tell him that in any situation you’re faced with you’re always going to be presented with several different choices – so pick the best choice. Best choice: Buying the bag of Oreo’s that I know I will inhale? No. Buy the bag of apples instead. Best choice: Drink the coffee because I’m so tired and grumpy and have seemingly convinced myself that I cant function without it, even at 5:oo in the afternoon? No. Drink a huge glass of water or decaf green tea and deal with no caffeine.

Which brings me to my point. Picking the best choice by exhibiting some self control and discipline. Prov 25: 28 “A person without self-control is like a city with broken-down walls.”

It is easier said then done but the more you practice it – the better you’ll get at it. Im talking to myself here. No late afternoon coffee pick-me-ups anymore. :/ Sad but I know its not whats best for me. They get me jittery, cant fall asleep until late, and then I wake up late. Which throws off my whole day. Which just sends me back to the late afternoon coffee pick-me-ups. Instead of cutting it out completely, I’m going to choose to replace it with some (decaf) hot tea.

I’m starting a PiYo Challenge group the day after Labor Day. I <3 PiYo and what it did for me the first time I tried it so I’m ready to see similar results again this time (increased strength, inches lost, smaller stomach, more flexible). I can not wait to do it in a challenge group form, working it with some friends and being inspired by their hard work will be amazing! But my number one thing that must happen – I’ve got to get out of bed in the mornings. Early. I want to have time to get the workout in before the kids are up and before the busyness of my day starts.

I really hate waking up early, ask anyone who knows me and they will tell you – do not even come at me before 9am. LOL! However, for this PiYo Challenge Im going to really put my self control in check. Along with eating clean and daily exercise .. Waking up at 6:30am (that pains me to say). Doing my normal morning routine, plus adding in the work out. And then cutting the crap in the late afternoon so that I am in bed at a decent hour. No more of this 1-2am nonsense. Working at mastering self control and discipline because I already know what the best choice is – but actually doing it is the hard part.

prov 25 self control

Last week’s blog I detailed how this school year is going to go, with respect to starting our mornings off right; bible reading, memory verse, and praying. I was going to talk first about the new verse for this week but then something just happened and I feel kinda crappy.

The big kid and I just finished rough housing and I started to walk away, he called my name and as I turned around he threw one of the toddler’s stuffed animals at me. Hard. The thing hit me right in the face and it hurt. My reaction was to yell at him, “That is enough! I did not find that funny. Go upstairs now!” His expression went from a goofy playful smile to a hurt sad frown. I’m not sure who was more offended, me for getting him or him for getting yelled at. Although if I had to guess, it would not be me. Mama fail!

Seems like when I’m being patient and kind, it takes me repeating myself several times for the kid to get what I’m saying and do it but when I lose my temper and yell, they know mama isnt playing so you’d better listen. But which is better in the long run? … My kid having hurt feelings because I failed to control my temper is not the way I want to go. Which is why I need these weekly bible memory verses and daily readings just as much, if not more, then they do. What was that again about being slow to anger? (I guess I know what verse I should memorize for next week!)

Week 2’s verses.

Bible memory week 2

Prov 31:30 “Charm is deceptive, and beauty is fleeting; but a woman who fears the Lord is to be praised.”

The big kid
Psalm 66:20 “Praise be to God, who has not rejected my prayer or withheld his love from me!”

The toddler
Prov 3:5 “Trust in the Lord with all your heart”

Here is the blog post for last week. Admittedly, Bethany got hers down the very first day while George and I took a little longer to get it. I was so proud of both of them though, they worked hard to learn them and enjoyed quizzing each other. The sweetest part was how one of the days I woke up late (because the baby had a rough night) and I came downstairs, the big kid said they already went over their verses and read together. For them to grow up and get into the habit of choosing for themselves to start off their mornings this way would amazing! This mama’s answer to prayer.

Prov 31

Its Tasty Tuesday! I’m going to make it my goal to post a new recipe or cooking tip every Tuesday, I have several new ones I want to try so yall are going to be my guinea pig. Usually my kids are the ones I have as guinea pigs, like that time I made black bean brownies and not even my toddler would touch it. (Not all brownies are created equal and these were horrible, that was defiantly a recipe that went into the Never Try Again pile!)

Tasty Tuesday

Cooking no meat dishes, its important to use spices to add flavor to the dish & make it complete. While we were on vacation this summer I discovered a new spice. Its my new favorite! Caribbean Jerk by McCormick


Took me a little hunting to find it but I bought it from Walmart. Its got a spicy flavor without lighting your face on fire, is a little smoky, and it does give a little Caribbean feel. Ive used it with temped and tofu (in place of meat) as well as various roasted veggies. Add a little sweet pineapple – oh yass! I plan on doing Island Jerk skewers this weekend, veggie for me and shrimp for everyone else. Delish!

Tomorrow will be our first day for the 2015-2016 school year. I just spent the past 1.5 hours planning out our week and I feel like my brain has turned to mush. My fingers hurt from writing so much (so then why am I typing this blog, who knows!) Let me just say, Im giving you teachers props times 10,000! To be responsible for a classroom full of little adults, its your job to fill their brains with as much info as you can – in such a short amount of time and then try to impact them in such a way that they develop critical life skills. That’s no easy task. Plus I have teacher friends who talk of dealing with difficult parents and a myriad social issues. I would give you all Starbucks gift cards and a spa weekend if I could. Thank you. Thank you. Thank you.

Last year was a little rough because we added baby no. 3 to the mix. I got a little disorganized (which stressed me out to the max) and so did the school work. The big kid did great but it wasn’t as well executed as I would have liked. The husband and I have talked about how to go about making changes here and there to remedy some of those issues.

How to get your homeschooling morning off right?

As I sat down today to plan out our first week back the very first thing I did was to plan morning bible reading and memory verses for the kids. My home church pastor always says to start your day off with the bible in your lap. No matter what curve ball gets thrown your way – or how our school day might turn out – at least we started on track! Lots of prayer. Lots. Will be how we keep it up.

At first I was just planning on having the kids do it but leading by example is always the best teaching tool. You can tell them what to do but it seems like actually showing them gets them further. I had their verses planned out but then that little voice in my head (re. the Holy Spirit) was like …. Wait! Youre not exempt from learning these too! Plus, I know my son will just love being able to quiz while trying to stump his mom. This will be fun for him. Im thinking of making a game out of it and at the end of the month have a little prize for accomplishing the memory verses. Ill also be posting the week’s verses here for accountability sake, but also I would love for others to join us!

My verse
Prov 31:26 She opens her mouth with wisdom, and the teaching of kindness is on her tongue.

The big kid’s verse
Psalm 139:14 I praise you because I am fearfully and wonderfully made; your works are wonderful, I know that full well.

The tot’s verse
Eph 4:32 Be kind to one another.
(I know in the pic the reference number is wrong, I caught it after I wrote it down.)

My hubby joked and asked me what verse he should try and memorize. Um. Eph 5:25. That’s all. Hahaha.


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