Saturday, June 30, 2012

Eva: Week 16

Baby Eva- It's been another busy week for you. On Sunday we went to the sandbar and you played around in the ocean for a while. You cried when you first hit the water (it was sooo cold). Just as I grabbed the towel and asked your daddy to hand you to me, you stopped. You ended up loving it and staying in there for a long time. You've been making a lot of raspberry noises lately. It's so funny because your drool flies everywhere. "Say it, don't spray it!," I tell you, because I'm a 90's kid. You've been going through phases of blowing raspberries and talking over the past few weeks, actually- sometimes you want to talk and other times you just want to blow raspberries. You also finally rolled over from your belly to your back again! You hadn't done it since you were about 6 weeks old! I don't know why you stopped for so long (probably because you're so chunky!). I figured out that if I put a mirror in front of you during tummy time you enjoy it for a longer period of time. I love how I can trick you! ;-) You've also been sitting unsupported for a longer period of time. You stay up for about 30-60 seconds before I have to catch you as you get tired and topple over. Oh, and you're wearing size 3 diapers now! You're such a big girl!

Eva by the Day:

New this Week:
-First time swimming in Kaneohe Bay.
-Growth spurt at around 16w5d.
-Sitting up for longer periods of time.
-Graduated to Size 3 diapers!

Friday, June 29, 2012

Fit Friday v.13: How I Became a Runner

Update: I lost -1.5 lbs last week. 13.5 lbs since the beginning of April. I've kept up with running even though my lower back is still in a bit of pain from last week's strain. It really only hurts when I'm in a sitting or bending position so I've avoided most weightlifting exercises. I think I'll be alright by next week.
Today's Fit Friday post is mostly for non-runners who have been wanting to try running.

As a former trainer/current gym rat, I know running is a bit controversial. A lot of fitness models and bodybuilders discourage running because it can actually burn a little too much muscle along with the fat. But my addiction to running prevents me from possessing any amount of ration when it comes to that subject. (Well, actually a little bit of ration because I have no interest in marathon running, or any long-distance running, really.)

I've mentioned my addiction to running plenty of times on this blog. I run 5-6 days a week. I ran throughout my pregnancy right up to labor. But I've never explained how I got here. I used to hate running. When I was in high school I dreaded the days when we had to run at P.E.. I was in Track, but only because I loved pole vaulting and long jump. I hated the running part. After graduating, I had absolutely no desire (or reason) to run. I still exercised (surfing, lifting, elliptical), but I never ran. One day, after practicing vegetarianism for a little over a year, I realized that I had gained about 20lbs and I decided that I needed to get back to running (and protein). I never looked back. To be honest, there are many days when I still hate running. But I just do it.

Just Do It. No, this post is not sponsored by Nike, but I couldn't say it better. It was SO hard for me to start. I would come up with excuses for why I couldn't run that day. Or I'd start running and get tired easily and stop. Then all of a sudden I realized there are a lot of things in life I'd rather not do. I don't want to go get the clothes out of the dryer and fold them and put them away. I don't want to do the dishes. But I just do them. I applied that philosophy to running. I told myself that I was going to run for 3 miles, no matter how long it took me. And I forced myself to do it. One thing some people suggest is that you do walk/run intervals. This ended up being more difficult for me (which makes sense because your heart has to work harder to slow down and speed up like that). What worked from me was forcing myself to run at a manageable pace for three miles. Every damn day. (Now I do intervals & sprinting and stuff, which helped me improve my speed a lot, but I didn't start off doing that.)

Schedule it. Running is not an option for me. It's like brushing my teeth. It's not an "Oh I have a dentist appointment tomorrow so I won't be able to run" type of thing. Running is part of my daily schedule. I will always wake up earlier or put something else off before I skip a run. Personally, I have to run when I first wake up in the morning. That's when I have the most energy and motivation. If I wait til later, things will pile up and it won't get done. Plus, if I don't run in the morning my whole day feels "off." Some people are afternoon people. Pick a time that works for you, and stick to it. 

Make a Playlist. I have to have music blasting in my ears to run. I'm very particular about it, too. It almost always has to be 90's/00's punk. The faster & more motivating, the better. In my opinion, Pennywise is the best running music ever. I also listen to a lot of the Unseen, Guttermouth, Lars Frederickson, Bad Religion, etc. When I'm running I like to turn it up really loud and get lost in it. Sometimes it feels like the music entering my ears is  directly powering the muscles in my body, and I'm just like a marionette or something. Put the music that motivates you onto a playlist and blast it during your runs.

Try a Treadmill. I have to run on a treadmill. Being outside is awesome, and I love running at the beach or on a trail, but I can't run on concrete or asphalt. I get shin splints every time. If this happens to you, try a treadmill (if you have access to one). If this doesn't happen to you, I'm slightly jealous. Another thing I like about running on a treadmill is that it forces me to keep the pace I want. It's easier for me to measure my progress and force myself to run faster. There are a lot of great apps that will track your speed and stuff if you run outside, too, but they never work as well as a treadmill for me when I can't slow down unless I push the buttons in front of me.

I know that running isn't necessary to lose weight or get in shape, but after forcing myself to do it everyday, I somehow grew to love it and I don't think I can stop anytime soon. I don't want to stop. That's why I ran throughout my pregnancy. I was scared that if I stopped I wouldn't be able to start again. I need to run. There's nothing else that makes my heart pound as fast or makes me feel more accomplished (physically). Running is my ME time. It's the only thing I do that doesn't involve anyone else but me. No conversations, no sharing, just me & my running shoes. It's the one time a day I can completely forget about all my worries as I get into a rhythm and get lost in the music. 

My approach to running won't work for everyone. People obviously approach fitness in different ways, have different goals, and different motivations. Here's another great post with running tips by someone who approaches running in a slightly different way. 

Thursday, June 28, 2012

Studying for the Bar with a Baby, v.2

I just sort of learned an entire semester of Secured Transactions in one day and my brain feels like an egg on a Texas sidewalk in June. It's one of those recommended classes that I never took in law school because when my 3L year came (the last year of law school when I had planned on taking it), it was scheduled at the same time as Professional Responsibility (a class required to graduate). Not only that, but I think Eva is going through another little growth spurt because she had another "sleep, or cry if I'm not eating" days like the one she had a few weeks ago. Some friends told me to check out Wonder Weeks. I haven't yet, but it's on my to-do list along with a zillion other things.

Sorry, this is not something that has anything to do with pregnancy or fitness or stuff that's going into Eva's baby book, like most of the other stuff I write about. But it's almost July and the bar exam has infiltrated every cell in my brain. I know this post is going to be jumbled and full of typos. I've written enough essays today. How anyone is to be expected to memorize this much information is beyond me. I've started looking for blogs written by others in my situation, but I've had trouble finding any. I guess it's because the smart kids are too busy studying to blog. Am I not studying enough? I often wonder if I'm having too much fun for someone studying for the bar. I always stop studying after 6 and enjoy a glass of wine. I give myself most of the weekend. I really don't think I can physically or mentally study any more than I already do. So I think I'll spend some time writing about it every now and then for any panicked law grad who stumbles upon this blog. If When I pass the bar I'll probably do a post about what I did wrong and what I did right. Here are a few others I've found so far:

Yesterday I took a practice MBE (a 6 hour multiple-choice test) and I passed (barely). That's both good and bad. I need to do better so that I have more room for error on the essay portion. All the essays involve Texas law and stuff like Secured Transactions. That's what I really need to be focusing on in the next few weeks. But I still have 3 weeks so I'm not too stressed. The mid-term was enough to light a fire under my ass but not bad enough to cause a meltdown.

On a brighter note, I finally received my exam ticket today. And I got the San Antonio location (which is awesome because we already bought our plane tickets to SA and it would have been nice if we found out earlier.) That takes a chunk out of my stress. I was certain I missed something on that bar exam application and the last month of studying was in vain. 

AAAaaandd on even brighter note... I literally just bought my one-way ticket to Texas (where we'll be until we get assigned to our new random country). On September 27th we will say aloha to Hawaii (for now). Eva and I will spend a couple of months back home with family while D attends the classes for his new position. Then we'll finally head off to our new foreign home (but you won't get dates for that). 

I'm really looking forward to having two months to savor Hawaii for the first time without school or work to worry about (except now I can't surf without someone on beach baby patrol). I'm also looking forward to spending another two or three months in Texas where Evita can finally really get to know her grandparents and aunties and uncles. And I really get butterflies when I think about not knowing where I'll be after that. 

I have so much to look forward to after the bar exam, I just hope the good times aren't tainted with the stress of not knowing whether or not I passed. I guess I just have to stay positive and remind myself that there are plenty of successful lawyers who didn't pass the bar for the first time (Michelle Obama, Hillary Clinton... so I'm told), and they didn't have a new baby as an excuse. And if I fail I'll have an excuse to fly back to Texas next February. But ya know what? I think I just might be able to do this.

So there ya have it. I think this counts as my "currently" post. You don't even get a picture.

Throwback Thursday: Tortugas de las Galápagos

I don't know how many people would care to know, but "Solatario Jorge" or "Lonesome George" recently died at the Charles Darwin Research Station in the Galápagos. Lonesome George was the last of his subspecies of Galápagos Tortoises. While I was studying abroad in the Galápagos, I spent quite a bit of time studying the tortoises for my Evolutionary Biology Class. The obvious differences between the tortoises' shells, length of legs, and other characteristics based on their islands (or parts of their islands) partially inspired Darwin's Theory of Evolution. For today's Throwback Thursday, I thought I'd share some pictures from some of my experiences with them.

The first set of pictures is from the Charles Darwin Research Station on Isabela Island. It was just a short bike ride or walk away from my school, and I visited a few times during the summer. The Galápagos Tortoises have experienced a huge population decline in the last century or so, and the research station works to bring the species back up. The station is home to several sub-species of the tortoises from eggs to hatchlings to centenarians. 

While I was there for class one day, we saw this mama bird teaching her baby how to fly!! It was one of the most amazing things I have ever seen. The baby bird was up on a tree branch and the mama was down below on a ledge and was tweeting and tweeting and tweeting to her baby. Finally, after about 5 minutes or so, the baby bird clumsily flew down to her mama. It was so precious.

This second set of pictures was from our trip to another island, Floreana. On this island we were able to hike to an area where we could observe the tortoises living in their natural environment. There were so many. It was very neat being so close to them.

For my final project in my Evolutionary Biology Class, I decided to do a presentaiton on how the eruption of Volcán Cerro Azul might affect the two subspecies of tortoises unique to vicinity of the volcano. Don't worry, I won't go into the nerdy details. :)

Tuesday, June 26, 2012

Summer, According to my Bathroom

At any given time, throughout my entire life, you'd find a bikini hanging in my bathroom. I've always lived in places where it's summer (or close) year round, and I was pretty much raised at the beach. The towel racks in my past and present bathrooms have rarely been used for actual towels. I glimpsed over at this the other day and my heart melted. I'm raising the next generation of beach rat. My daughter, too, will forever live with a bikini or two taking up space on the towel rack. 

I love this.

Eff Ya'll we're from Texas

I went on my first ever blogger meet up. I can't remember exactly how we all found eachother, but it was inevitable that we would. Why? Because we're from Texas. And how do you know someone is from Texas? Don't worry, we'll tell you. ;-)

Some may say the place we live in is paradise, but I'm sure if you asked any one of us we'd disagree. Don't get me wrong, we think Hawaii is pretty awesome. But you can never take the Texas out of a girl. Needless to say, we got along great!

We went out to the sandbar on Sunday afternoon. Some of D and I's other friends from back home came too. More Texans. It was a little windy, which made it a bit chilly, but it was a lot of fun! Aside from a run-in with a pufferfish leading to D bleeding from his head, there were no injuries. 

That was the first time I've ever hung out with girls I've met through blogging. I wish I would have found them sooner! It can be difficult to find friends when I move around so much. I really only have a couple that I hang out with on a regular basis. But of course I'll be gone in a few months. Maybe I'll find a friend in my new country via blogging?

Anyway... If you're curious as to the bloggers I met up with, you can find them at Adventure of E, Jessica Who?, and Tiny Texan. :)


Monday, June 25, 2012

Spinning the Globe

So I've mentioned here and there that we will be leaving Hawaii soon, but I haven't really formally explained why.

When I was a kid, my mother had this big round globe at our house. I guess I was a geography nerd from the beginning, because I loved that thing. I would study the flow of rivers and observe how the continents seemed to fit. I would read all the different names of the countries. I would hold my finger up to it, close my eyes, give it a spin, and tell myself that whatever place my finger landed on was someplace I would live someday. Well, that's pretty much exactly what my little family will be doing this Fall.

We'll soon be moving to a random country overseas. It could be anywhere. We are really crossing our fingers for somewhere in Spanish-speaking South America, specifically Peru, but I think I'll be alright with whatever we get. When I was a young geography major (okay... 3 years ago), I dreamed of working for National Geographic and whisking myself around the world. I'm finally going to realize at least part of that dream, so I'll seriously appreciate whatever we get. I really hope at least one of those countries is somewhere I can practice my Spanish everyday and raise Eva speaking both languages. But most importantly, we're hoping it's some place with surf. We don't want to get our hopes too high.

When I get back from taking the bar exam in July I'll begin my last two months in Hawaii (for a while, at least). I'll miss this place a lot. I can't believe I've spent about 5 years of my life here. I think living in Hawaii is what every Texas grom dreams of doing someday. I can't believe I did it. We did it. My little family. But I'm also ready to go. I have a bad case of wanderlust. If it were up to me we'd live in a new place every year (as long as there are waves there). As of now, we're planning on coming back here eventually. Daniel will probably end up retiring in the Marines, so we want to come out here to finish up his career. A lot can happen in three years, though, so who knows. Maybe we'll get to stay overseas for another 3. All I know is that we'll eventually settle down in Texas, where my heart will always be.

So all these changes are very exciting for me. It makes studying a little difficult sometimes. I like to daydream about the places we might go. At night, when I allow myself an hour of brainless television, I like to watch House Hunters International and picture living in whatever Country they're in. I just can't wait. But at the same time, I feel like I have to take full advantage of my last couple of months in Hawaii (after the Bar, of course).

Sunday, June 24, 2012

Where Summer Never Ends

This week's Paper Mama Photo Challenge theme is "summer," and this picture is one of my favorites from the past week (or so), for some reason. It's guess it's just one of those pictures you take a bit too early or late, and maybe you don't frame it quite right, but it ends up being more interesting than the planned one.

Summertime in Hawaii isn't much different from the rest of the year (unless you define seasons by swells), but we love it just the same.

The Paper Mama Photo Challenge

Saturday, June 23, 2012

Eva: Week 15

Eva- As much as I miss the newborn you, I'm loving all these little changes you're making! You started grabbing your feet a few weeks ago, but starting this week you've almost been spending more time grabbing your feet than not grabbing them. And if you're not grabbing your feet, you're putting something in your mouth. I couldn't even get your weekly picture this week without your hands in your mouth! You haven't figured out that you can put your feet in there yet but I'm sure it won't be long before you do. I still can't believe you rolled from your back to belly the other day. You hate being on your belly! You haven't rolled since then, though. What I think happened is that you got carried away playing with your feet and before you knew it you were flipped over. Who knows, though? I missed it. Still bummed. Another nice little memory from this week is that one day when I went to pick you up from the Kid's Club after my workout, your teachers were giving you kiddos "outside time" and I spotted you riding around in an umbrella stroller like a big girl. You looked SO adorable and you were loving it. I think we're going to have to get you one of those soon. Oh, and your growth spurt is over and you're back to sleeping through the night again (thanks!!!). I love you my sweet baby! -Mama

Eva by the Day:

New this Week:
-first time at a jiu-jitsu tournament
-a lot more foot grabbing
-lots of putting hands and things in mouth

Friday, June 22, 2012

Fit Friday v.12

My Fitness Update: 

This week I lost another 0.5 lbs, which is alright with me. I posted a pic update below (5d pp & 14w pp). I'm starting to feel comfortable in a bikini again but I still have a little ways to go. Yesterday I did something terrible. Okay- I know I'm a former trainer and I'm supposed to preach the importance of warming up, yadda yadda yadda, but the truth is I rarely do. Especially when I only have an hour to workout and I want to give that hour my 100%. Well, yesterday I was doing this leg circuit workout and I didn't workout before sprinting & leg presses. When I got to the next part of the workout, I bent over to move a bench and it felt like my lower back was ripping in half. It hurt SO bad. Today it hurts even worse. I could barely sleep last night. I don't know how long it's going to be this way but I hope it heals soon. I can't stay out of the gym for very long and I don't want to make it worse.  Ughh... So lesson of the day (for me, at least)... warm up before your workouts, you're not 15 anymore.

Favorite Fitness Links:

Summer is here! This article has a list of 3 great outdoor workouts that can be performed anywhere. Looks like good stuff to me.

Speaking of summer, here's another great article containing 15 tips for a healthier summer.

Loooove this blog post about 5 ways to get bikini ready. "It’s amazing how many people think that their bodies are “different” when it comes to losing weight. They “can’t” lose weight and they think it is because their body chemistry is different then the people who lose weight easily. While I do agree, everyone’s body’s respond differently, I strongly disagree when people tell me they “can’t” lose weight. I’ve NEVER met a body that I can’t sculpt. NEVER!" AMEN to that!


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