Archive for the ‘Lifestyle’ Category

3 Small Discipline Habits You Can Train

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While I’m not a fan of trying to be disciplined every moment of the day, there’s no doubt most of us could use a little more discipline in our lives. We procrastinate, we waste time with online distractions, we go an entire day without getting done what we really wanted to get done. How do […]

Member Musings: Why I Said Bye-Bye to the Scales


Guess what? It’s my anniversary. Not your typical anniversary though. It’s been ONE year since I got on my scales (to measure weight) and felt my stomach hit the floor. A feeling I was ready to wave bye-bye to — for good.

For me it does not create a positive body image. It highlighted things I didn’t accept about myself. We all have our body types, our DNA, our genetics – the things that make us unique. We are what we are.

I am blessed with this body, the three children it’s carried, the breath is gives me to go on about life and build cherished memories. And I’ll never weigh 130 pounds, unless I ate air for my three meals a day!

The final straw was on a trip to Australia for 5 weeks last summer. I simply adore Australian food, and any overseas expat will tell you that they totally gorge on all the scrumptious things they miss being overseas – the bakeries, the cheeses, the Cadbury’s chocolate made in Australia. Not to mention the consumption of wine at the constant catch up’s with loved ones. I also didn’t have access to my usual exercise routine, so working off that gorgeous food went to the wayside.

I got home and right back into my lifestyle program, as I have done for seven years now and have embedded into my life. I even joined a boot camp on Groupon. Moving along, I worked my butt off for about 2 weeks and got on those scales. It took me days to psych myself up. I had put on 4 pounds. My heart sunk, tears streamed out of my eyes and I sounded so utterly pathetic to myself. I called my husband in tears. He thought something severely catastrophic must have happened to call him in such a panic. “I put on 4 pounds.” It sounded like such a first world problem. And that’s when I realized it was out of control.

There are times in life where we have an unhealthy relationship with something or someone, and you need to detach yourself from that thing or person. That was the scales for me. It’s not healthy for me, it brings me down, it detracts from the awesomeness in my life.

A year later, and it’s been the best darn year in respect to my body image. I really want to celebrate myself, have fun with myself, highlight what I love about my body. Celebrate my delicious pear shape. I started to accept the things I could not change. I’m not a lover of my legs but instead of shaming that, I celebrate ways I can elongate them, wear what’s right for my body type.

This summer I put a photo of myself on Instagram in my swimsuit. Gasp. I never would have done that in a million years before.

Me floating in a pool in a bikini

Here I am sunning myself in Hawaii on my 39th birthday. I found myself a great bikini for the summer that let me have some fun with a season trend (high-waisted bikinis) and suited my body type. I’m loving life!

So here we are, a year later.

On my anniversary.

And a weight has been lifted from my shoulders — pardon the pun!

I appreciate everyone is unique and the scales won’t bring about panic for others that it did me. And I also appreciate that others have a weight loss journey that totally requires scales. My opinion is unique to me and not a reflection on what I think others should do.

It is important for me to maintain my weight. Diabetes is a big factor in my family so I am still very conscious to take care of myself in the present, to avoid future problems. I live by some general routines that are enough for me. I drink mainly water (the rare diet soda), a large portion of my diet are fruit and vegetables, I make sure I get my 8 hours sleep in at night, I go the gym 4 times a week as well as daily habits of walking and biking with the kids. And I go by my clothes. If my skinny jeans are feeling a little tight, I ramp things up a bit and it all evens out again. As well, for women, there are so many factors that can play with the scales such as your period, hormones, water retention etc.

5 Fashionable Tips for Moms — for Back to School Time!


Summer vacation is coming to an end and it’s time to start thinking about that back to school routine. The mornings can be rough as we attempt to get lunches made, kids dressed, coffee down our throats, teeth brushed, back packs on, etc. But what about us? Don’t forget about us Moms/Mums! Here are five […]

Get Outta Town: Pismo Beach

Photo by Mark Combellick

Not far south of the San Francisco Bay Area you will find Pismo Beach. From San Jose, the drive is just a little over three hours. A very doable drive at night or in the early morning with kids who take naps. Besides the beach, Pismo is surrounded by other fun communities like San Luis […]

Member Musings: Declutter Your Space


I am embarrassed to say my house was very cluttered. My closet was overflowing — it was a struggle to physically access the clothes that were hanging. I could no longer see the floor in my home office. I had piles of things in every corner; I felt like I lived in a flea market.

Three Ways to Get the Most out of Your Workout

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Here are 3 basic guidelines to help you take better care of yourself and make the most of your workouts. The more closely you follow them, the better prepared you will be for anything I might throw your way, and you’ll have way more fun. HYDRATE YOUR BODY I know what it’s like to run […]

Camping — At Home?

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Camping in the Bay Area with a young family can be challenging. Campsites get booked out months or even a year in advance, buying gear quickly adds up, and if you don’t go regularly, it’s easy to feel overwhelmed with the logistics of carting your whole family into the outdoors. Or you might be like […]

Does Physical Exercise Make Kids Smarter?

Photo by Rebecca Alison

The stereotypical smart kid prefers reading to playing sports. The stereotypical below average kid prefers sports to learning in the classroom. The fact is these perceptions are flawed. Focus on academic achievement and lower budget levels has led many schools in the U.S. to diminish

Best of the Forum: Teaching Mindfulness


In search of ideas for teaching mindfulness, gratitude, etc. to four-to-five year olds. How do you incorporate this in your family? Any suggestions, classes, books, etc. would be very much appreciated.

Celebrate Earth Day – Everyday!

Photo by Rebecca Alison

Earth Day is this week! Earth Day, sometimes celebrated on a single day and sometimes for an entire week, is honored around the world in an effort to demonstrate support for environmental protection and awareness. Even simple activities done at home or around the neighborhood

Member Musings: Greening Your School

Photo by Rebecca Alison

Launched on Earth Day 2010 by four moms who wanted a better world for their children, Grades of Green is a California nonprofit that aims to make environmental protection second nature in young minds. Their website offers free instruction to inspire and empower students

What Inspires You to Get Fit?

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Where do you find your fitness inspiration? What keeps you lacing up you putting on your workout clothes? My own fitness dream inspiration has shifted over the years. Family can be your fitness inspiration. One of my own favorite inspirations is to realize how your own fitness can improve your

Best of the Forum: Where to Go in Europe This Summer?


My husband and I would like to spend 5 days in Europe this June kid free. We are traveling direct from NYC. Besides Paris, what other cities are worth looking into? Please recommend someplace that we can mix 2 days of touring with some beach / pool relaxation, as well as good food.

Shoe Sharing?

Photo by Rebecca Alison

Kids grow up quickly. They really, really do. One second, your child is learning to walk, and the next, you’re attending their kindergarten graduation. Along the way, they’re growing out of their clothes at rates fast enough to bankrupt small nations. In fact, from onesies and

Member Musings: Vegetarian Book Reviews


Plenty More by Yotam Ottolenghi Yotam Ottolenghi’s cookbook Jerusalem broke new ground with fantastic flavor combinations and inventive dishes that were at once exotic but approachable and appealing. The recipes blended different culinary traditions in a way that is fresh and exiting. Like so many people, I marveled that every dish I made from the book […]