THOUGHTS OF THE DAY


We are exhausted. We are frustrated.  We are happy.  We are excited. We are sad. We are miserable.  We are beautiful.  We are full of love. We are blessed. 

We are every emotion that ever existed. 




Answering the "How are you?" question is not an easy one.

When asked this question by another woman, and there is a slight pause before a response, we know what that means.  It means you are everything and nothing at all, all at the same time. We are beautiful messes and we can never really describe exactly how we feel at any given time because we change so quickly!  

Everyone is doing the best they can.  

Being a Married Working Mother isn't easy and no one really knows if they are doing it "right". What they do know is that they are doing what's best for them and their families.




So let's be gentler to the women around us.  We are all going through it.  We can learn from each other.  




Signed, 



Be encouraged, Candilaria

10 Tips To Make Your Whole30 Challenge A Success

Remember my post back in January about my fitness goals?  

Well I am in week 4, day 2 of my 8 week challenge and I am having an incredibly rough week with the nutrition aspect of it.  We are following the Whole30 regimen which is almost identical to the Paleo Diet minus a few things. While this regimen is suppose to be for 30 days only, the challenge I signed up for is like doing the Whole30 twice, back to back.  

I traveled to Florida for a couple of days last week.  Eating became an arduous task and the word insane does not begin to sum up the way I feel about this challenge.  Eating on the go is difficult, but it's even crazier when you are not prepared. Which I was not.

To keep myself motivated and for anyone else that is trying or have tried the Whole30, they will know exactly what I mean.  


Here are a few tips when committing yourself to the Whole30 challenge:


1.  Go ahead and admit how insane you are to take on such a challenge.  Yes, other people think you are crazy too!

2.  Never, and I mean never go on a trip while you are in the middle of said fitness challenge.  The temptation to go off your nutrition track is more than anyone can bear.

Scrambled eggs with Turkey Bacon,
a banana and cup of Green Tea
3.  It's important to try different recipes. You will get tired of eating the same thing over and over.  Right now I cannot even look at a stalk of broccoli!

4.  Drink Green Tea and Coconut water.  They are both a nice change from the constant water intake.

5.  Your clothes will become loose and people will comment how baggy your clothes look. But you will secretly love this because it means something is happening and other people notice.

6.  Stay Strong and surround yourself around strong people and people stronger than you.

7.  Always, always, always pack snacks.  Lifesavers I tell you, lifesavers.

8.  Prepare EVERYTHING the night before.  If you don't you will pay for it the next day.  Better yet, take a Sunday afternoon and prepare for the week.

9.  The people you are around daily will either get sick of you talking about what you can and cannot eat or be motivated by it. LOL. True Story.

10. Exercise!  Eating is 80% the process but exercising sure does help.  It helps with your overall goal and it makes you feel great!


Are you willing to take the challenge?


Signed, 
Keeping my head up, Candilaria








GUEST BLOG: How Do You Know When You Are Being A Good Parent?

On January 1st, my husband and I sat down with my eight year old daughter and my five year old son and had a family meeting.  We asked them, what are some changes you feel that we need to make as a family? My daughter said she would like us to have more mother /daughter time.  That said to me that she needs to have more of my attention.  I had no idea that she felt that way until I gave her the opportunity to speak her mind.  I thought to myself, “Wow, how could I not know that she was feeling this way?  I am a bad mother.”

I always ask myself jokingly, why don’t these kids come with instruction manuals?  I mean what is the measuring stick of parenting?  How do you know that you are being a good parent?  Here I am with the lives of these little people entrusted in my care and I want to do it right.  God forbid that thirty years from now my children are in a therapist office hearing the words “It’s all your mother’s fault.”






Amazingly, I have found that I am not the only one questioning whether or not I am a good parent.  As mothers, we tend to constantly second guess ourselves.  The truth of the matter is there is really no cookie cutter template of what a good parent is.  What works perfectly for someone else may not work for you and your kids.  We all can’t be Carol from the Brady Bunch.


In today’s society most kids are lucky to even get a home cooked meal.  I remember the days before I became a teacher.  I would get home at 6:30-7 p.m. and then try to cook dinner.  By the time dinner was done my kids would be asleep.  I would feel awful.  Then morning would come and I would be so flustered to get out of the house on time that I would not have time to cook a healthy breakfast.  I would find myself buying fast food more often than I should.  Ever take a crayon and write your child’s name with your left hand because you forgot to help her with her homework?  Hey don’t judge.  The life of a working mother is not one to be envied. I lived with this constant guilt.  I felt like the worst parent ever.  I had to find a way to re-adjust.

The key to being a successful parent is finding what works best for you and your children.  Trying to fit your life into someone else’s mold will only lead to frustration and stress.  For example, I found that in order for my day to go right, I must get up at least 5:30 a.m.  When I mention this to most people their response is “What! That is far too early!”  Well, it may be for you but for me that is what works. It gives me enough time to cook a healthy breakfast, prepare lunch and have a few minutes of devotions each morning.

To find what works best for you, you can start by asking yourself a few questions.  

One, are your kids healthy? Two, are they happy?  These are the two things that matter the most.  Many times we do not give ourselves the credit we deserve.  Third question is how can I assist in making their lives better?  It may even be helpful to ask your kids what you can do to be a better parent to them. Even within your own family you may find that each child requires a different level of attention.    And of course as your children grow your parenting style may change.  And if you make a mistake as we all do, cut yourself some slack.  Kids are resilient.  They are not expecting you to be perfect they just want you to be perfect for them, which you are.

The other day my son looked at me and said as he always does “Mummy you’re the best mummy in the world!”  Just the affirmation I needed. As for my daughter we decided that once a month we will have a girl’s day.






Ernesta Rodriques is a wife and mother. 

Ernesta Rodriques and her beautiful family



GUEST BLOGGER: D.I.Y. MAMA

www.theecologist.org
D.I.Y. MAMA – At least I am morphing into one!

It's 2014, the year my PINTERST obsession has materialized into my everyday life. All of a sudden,I am obsessed with D.I.Y.! "You mean to tell me I didn’t have to throw that old dresser away?"

 Arghhhh ….

It is February and I have already completed two small D.I.Y. projects for the year. Woot Woot! They were really easy and saved some pennies for the savings jar. Let’s face it, VAT is coming, we can all do some projects that will give us a different look in our homes and keep a few dollars in our pockets.

Listed below are the two projects I successfully tackled, and some projects I am going to be working on in the upcoming weeks!



D.I.Y. Febreze 

Look, Febreze is expensive! Here is a D.I.Y. Febreze recipe I found. It works wonderfully. 

Homemade Febreze 

1/8 Cup of fabric softener (like Downy April Fresh),
2 tablespoons baking soda (for neutralizing odors) 
Hot tap water  
Vinegar (for its antibacterial properties) 


Combine all in a bottle, (use an empty 27 oz. Febreze bottle or an empty Starch spray bottle). Shake well! 

Easy Right?

I used this to spray our mattresses, pillows, couches, etc…..

                                


D.I.Y. Bar Stools

My next project was saving the bar stools I was about to throw away. Can you say "Good Save"! If you have any old bar stools that look a hot mess, this is for you!


Re-upholster Bar Stools

Upholstery Fabric (I spent $17.00 at Commonwealth Fabrics) 
Staple Gun 
Backing paper (optional)
Spray paint (optional)

Take off the backing material underneath the bar stool. Place the seat on the fabric. Cut around the seat making sure you have enough excess fabric to staple to the back of the seat. Staple, staple and staple away. Staple the backing material back onto the seat to hide the stapled fabric.

I bought black spray paint from Kelly's for $9.00 to spray the chair over, but I’ll wait until I am over my flu to do that.

Here is a before and after picture.

                                    

My other D.I.Y projects are exciting, they include but are not limited to;

                                     



1. Making a Lavender Coconut Oil Salt Scrub for my Book Club's March Birthday Girls. I personally can’t wait to use this!

2. My baby is turning one in March, so after days of searching PINTEREST for Mickey  Mouse Clubhouse ideas, I will be making the Mickey Mouse ears, decorations, cupcakes, etc. The work entailed is crazy but it’s going to be sooo worth it, and it's going to save me some money along the way!

3. Making some Lace-lined Short Pants from some long pants I don’t care to 
wear any longer.

4. Making Cupcake Bouquets for gifts….sigh……the list goes on and on and on!


5. I am getting a sewing machine in order to sew my own clothing. Yahooo! 

This year is definitely going to be an exciting year on the D.I.Y. front. Ladies, what are you making at home?


Written By
Demetria Cox-Moss


I'm a thirty-something year old wife and mother of two beautiful boys. I've worked in the Offshore world for almost twelve years. A novice to D.I.Y but a passionate one nonetheless. A lover of books, learning, all things Girly.... and most importantly a lover of life and second chances.

A LOVE LETTER TO ALL THE TIRED MARRIED WORKING MOTHERS EVERYWHERE - CANDILARIA'S VERSION

A friend of mine sent a link to me on Friday, click here to read.  I didn't read it when she sent it because I was driving and by the time I got home I had forgotten all about it.  This morning I remembered the message and opened it up and realized I was meant to read this today. Not Friday, and not Saturday but today.

It was such a great read that it inspired me to write my own Love Letter to all you tired Mamas.  I mean that in a good way! 

Today, I felt tired, just plain 'ole tired and the link lifted my spirits, so I say to you...


Dear Tired Married Working Mothers, 

I love that no matter how much you want a break from your children, the minute you are away from them all you can think about is them and how much you can't wait to see them again.

I love the fact that you feel perfectly fine when you are not around them because you know they are in good hands.

I love how you can wake up early in the morning and get yourself ready so that when the others wake you don't have to worry about yourself.




I love that even though you've made breakfast you still make something different for the child that doesn't eat what you've made.  You make it because you don't want to send them to school hungry.

I love how beautiful you look after a late night of working only to rise early in the morning for another day.

I love that you need to grab a glass of wine to calm down or for absolutely no reason at all.

I love how you can hear your child call you mummy 30 times in a row and it not affect you.

I love how you can hear your child call you mummy 30 times in a row and it drive you nuts.

I love that you try to be the loudest Mamma cheering your child on at Sports day and feeling super ecstatic when your baby wins.



I love that you know just which snacks and flavour juice each child likes and get a bit disappointed when you realize you put them in the wrong lunch bags.

I love that you forgot "wear your own clothes day" was scheduled on a different day than the day you sent your baby girl in her own clothes.  So she ended up having an awesome day spending it at her grandparents house instead.

I love that you can walk through the door at work and look around the office and say "I am not for this today!" and all the women around you understand just what you mean. **tomorrow is Monday!**

I love that you get frustrated by the incessant requests from your children but somehow you try to fulfill them all. I did say try. lol.  Some requests just aren't happening!

I love that you allow your child(ren) in your bed in the middle of the night knowing that it's the end of your good sleeping for the rest of the night.  

I love that you give them a chance to crack the eggs into the bowl for breakfast but more shell fell in the bowl than egg



I love that you break out the big iPad to record their performance at the School Play blocking the view for everyone behind you. But you don't care, your baby is on stage!

I love that you are always changing the decor of your child's room because you're never satisfied with the way it looks.

I love that you go without in order to provide for your babies

I love how excited you get when listening to your son's most outrageous ideas and adventures

I love that you show compassion even during your hard times.



I love that no matter how much you may complain about the daily grind you still do it and not because you have to.

I love that even though you can do things easier and quicker by yourself you let your child(ren) help you and end up having to clean up the messes that they make.

I love that you try to keep your cool when the above happens :)

I love that you are strong and weak at the same time and knowing that it's OK to be both



I love that you hold things down for everyone around you.


Married Working Mothers, continue on this wonderful roller coaster called Motherhood.  You are doing a great job even when you feel like you're not. Don't forget, we are all in this together!


Love, 
Candilaria




HAPPY BIRTHDAY D'ANTE!

HAPPY BIRTHDAY to the most beautiful 17 year old I know with an amazing spirit.  

Prabal Gurung said, "a beautiful woman is a beautiful woman, but a beautiful woman with a brain is an absolutely lethal combination."  

This honor roll student decided that even though it is HER day of celebration, instead of going with her original plan of having friends over for a little soiree, she opted out.  She opted out because of her BGCSE Food & Nutrition assessment first thing in the morning (yes on a Saturday!) and she wanted to use tonight to practice for it. Wow! On her birthday?!

Words cannot express how proud we are of D'ante, her achievements and how she is growing into a responsible young woman.  We love you very much!


Signed, 

Mom (Candilaria) and Daddy

THROW BACK THURSDAY!

Tiffany and I on April 22, 2006.  

Doing what we know best! Dancing...




Have a fabulous Thursday!  Dance if you want to! hee hee


Candilaria & Tiffany

GUEST BLOGGER! It's Okay 2014

I
1. It's okay to be a Guest Blogger because you haven't blogged since like 
    ummm....December!
2. It's okay to never feel like you have everything     
   under control.
3. It's okay to have a beautiful pink costume even though you are a Delta!


One Family Boxing Day Parade2013
My Flamingo Costume
4. It's okay to not be physically able to keep a pair of white pants clean no 
    matter how you try.
5. It's okay to spend $15.00 on your lunch for one day and then tell your 
    daughter that "No, she can't have ice-cream because you don't have any         money!"
6. It's okay to want your daughter to remain in the 'Tots Class' at ballet 
    because in her new class they need tap shoes and you hated tap when you
    were a child and you don't have any money to buy tap shoes because you 
    had a $15 meal for lunch.
7. It's okay to realize another woman loves your son.
8. It's okay to cry when that woman has to leave to return home and you 
    know that everyone and everything will miss her including your bathtub!
9. It's okay to hate cleaning bathrooms.... okay kitchens, bedrooms, toy 
    rooms. You get the picture.
10. It's okay to love who are at 41!
11. It's okay to have every intention of having a romantic night with hubby 
     but the kids interrupt and you fall asleep to experience the best sleep 
     ever!
12. It's okay to not be friends with some of your colleagues but tight as 
     thieves with others!
13. It's okay for your daughter to appoint a new Godmother because she 
     can recognize good character in a woman! 
14. It's okay to want an I-Phone, get an I-Phone, think these phones are 
     going to take over the world but still get totally attached to it...Thank 
     you Santa! 


Me showing all of my teeth!

Finally blogging again,
Tiffany

STRONG IS THE NEW SKINNY

Since committing myself to the half marathon, I decided to take it a step further.  No no no, I'm not doing the full marathon! Have absolutely no desire to do that.  Plus my body cannot take that kind of beating!  I like my knees.

However, after months of boxing, strength training, and running, I quite enjoyed the way I was feeling.  I felt healthy.  I felt strong.  

So before I ran the half marathon in January I decided to give myself mini goals through-out 2014.  I will share with them with you and hope that I can inspire some of you to take the challenge of becoming healthier and stronger.


For my second goal (the half marathon was my first), I joined our local Crossfit joint, called Da Box in January with trainer Charles Johnson.








Crossfit is a strength and conditioning program created by Greg Classman in 2000 with the aim of improving, among other things, muscular strength, cardio-respiratory endurance, and flexibility.  It advocates a perpetually changing mix of aerobic exercise, gymnastics (body weight exercises), and Olympic weight lifting.


In my opinion, it's not something you would start straight out of the blocks, especially if you haven't been active in a very long time.  But that's just my opinion.  I have seen many women who started at this level and have hung in there and are doing great!  So if you are feeling like doing it, just do it!  My months of doing other activities, however, prepared me quite nicely to begin Crossfit at a level that the exercises weren't a complete shock to my system. The exercises are hella hard nonetheless but completely rewarding! And can I tell you how great I feel after a session!

Da Box began an 8 week challenge, called The ONE on February 3!  This is my third goal.  The challenge is a combination of clean eating, performance progress and tracking your entire experience over the course of the 8 weeks.

For an example of clean eating, take a look at my breakfast this morning...


2 scrambled eggs (depends on your caloric intake you can have more or less), sweet potatoes with spinach, onions and green peppers with a side of half a grapefruit. It was actually pretty darn good!

This goal then leads into my fourth goal which is to register for the Spartan Race in April.  Yeah I know, I've lost my mind! LOL.  After that goal, it's Summer time and we all know what that means!  Goal #5 is Beach body!  Goal #6 is to run the 10K in November.  And my friends that should take care of my fitness for the year!

Having mini goals throughout the year makes it easier for you to stay consistent.  It's easy to fall off on your fitness regimen but if you are working towards something it gives you a sense of accountability.

So consider giving yourself goals throughout the year and hold yourself accountable.  Grab a partner, it's easier that way.  Stay committed.  Accept the fact that it isn't going to be easy and be comforted in knowing that you are taking active steps towards becoming a stronger you!




What will you do?

Signed, 
A stronger Candilaria

There was an error in this gadget