Tuesday, December 31, 2013

Goodbye 2013, Hello 2014

Happy New Year!!!

Last year was filled with so many changes for me. The biggest change of all being my commitment to becoming a better me.  I had a goal to lose 40 pounds by 12/31/13.  Not gonna lie, I fell a little short of the mark.  I only lost 33.1 pounds.  WOOHOO!!!!  I don't feel like I failed because I still accomplished so much in the last few months. 

Here is my final progress pics from 2013.

Left 8/31/13, Right 12/31/13 Down 33.1 pounds

Those pounds are gone forever. I will never be that woman in the before pic again.  I still have a long road ahead but I am taking it one day at a time.  Not only have I changed on the outside but I can feel a change on the inside.  I don't hate who I see in the mirror, I even catch that pretty lady in the mirror smiling back from time to time. 

In order to continue my success in 2014 I have set some goals for myself.  I have divided my goals into categories so I feel less overwhelmed.

Health/Fitness Goals
  1. Meet my 100 pound weightloss goal
  2. Complete three 5k races
  3. Complete the BCS half marathon in December 2014.
  4. Commit to working out a minimum of 3 days a week.
  5. Meal prep on Sundays
Academic Goals
  1. Manage my study time better.
  2. Try to get atleast one 'A' each semester.
Spiritual Goals
  1. Get to know Jesus better by reading the Gospel.
  2. Use my prayer journal everyday
  3. Count my blessings more often
  4. Go to mass faithfully every Sunday and actively seek the Holy Spirit in my heart.
  5. Engage in random acts of love and kindness whenever possible.
Financial Goals
  1. Make and stick to our family budget.
  2. Save more and spend less.
  3. Start a savings/college fund for MJ.
  4. Eliminate frivolous purchases.
Misc. Goals
  1. Read 4 non-school books
  2. Grow my hair out. {Get ready for some awkward stage hair photos on my instagram.  You can follow me @assignmentamanda.}
I will be printing this list out and taping it to my bathroom mirror so I can look at them everyday.  I have no reason not to complete anything on this list. I intend to look back a year from now and feel accomplished.

What are your goals for 2014? 

Until next time,

Friday, December 27, 2013

Happy Birthday Madelynn Jae

My little bambina is five today!  In honor of her birthday I thought it would be fun to tell her birth story.
I had somewhat of a struggle getting pregnant with MJ because I suffered from PCOS.  Basically, my body did not produce enough Progesterone to make me ovulate.  But after a year and a couple rounds of Clomid I became pregnant.   As soon as I found out that I was pregnant I knew I was having a girl.  I could feel it in my bones.  I was very fortunate to not have any real complications during my pregnancy (this was a miracle because I was overweight and ate more than my fair share of Whataburger while I was preggo).  Needless to say my pregnancy was very unhealthy.
MJ was due on December 23, 2008 but she decided she needed to wait until December 27th. That morning around 7:00 a.m. I woke up and felt really uncomfortable and was cramping pretty hard.  I took a hot shower and when the pain started growing stronger I knew that it was time.  I got dressed woke Brent up and had him time the contractions.  The contractions were getting stronger and were spaced evenly so we decided to go to the hospital.  We called our families to tell them that she was coming and then headed to the hospital.  We arrived at the hospital around 11:00 a.m. and I was feeling a good deal of pain by then.  I remember standing at the admitting desk in the ER wanting to choke the lady when she nonchalantly said “do you want me to call Labor and delivery?” while I was hunched over writhing in pain. Duh!

Once I got up to L&D they checked me and confirmed that today was the day.  I wasn't dilating steadily so the doctor gave me Pitocin.  That stuff is the Devil!  It was now about 12:30 p.m. and our families had arrived and were all in the room excited and laughing with each other.  Meanwhile I am trying to "breath" through the pain.  Around 1:30 p.m. I asked everyone to leave the room.  The extra noise only seemed to amplify the pain and I didn't want to keep answering the question of "are you feeling ok?" Umm no, my body is trying to expel a human.   

I labored for another hour and a half in the quiet with just Brent there to coach me.  I remember looking at him through tear-filled eyes asking him to please make the pain stop.  {After she was here I asked him why he kept stepping into the bathroom during this time and he told me that seeing me in that much pain made him so upset that he had to collect himself so he could be strong for me.  God gave me such a wonderful man, for reals.}

By 3:00 p.m. they decided I could have my epidural.  Up to that point those were the sweetest words I had heard in my life.  However it was another 30-45 min before the Anesthesiologist made it to the room.  It felt like days went by while waiting for him and that wonderful medicine.  After I had the epidural it was smooth sailing.  I let all the family come back in for a bit until it was time to push. 

I started seriously pushing around 10:30 p.m. They figured out that she was coming pretty easily and I had a nurse literally holding her in while waiting on the doctor to show up.  Once he got there one push and she was here.

Madelynn Jae Schrader was born at 11:34 p.m. on 12/27/08.  She weighed 8 lbs 12oz and was 20.5" long.  She was beautiful and perfect.  I loved her before she was born but the minute I saw her face I knew I would never be the same.  Brent and I cried because we both loved her so much the instant we saw her and he turned to me and said "I love you" and gave me the most tender kiss.  The moment I met MJ is one I never want to forget.

I think the love that you feel for your child is the exact same love God has for all of us.  In that moment I saw God. 

Happy Birthday Madelynn Jae.  Mommy loves you more than you will ever know.

Until next time,

Thursday, December 26, 2013

Checking In

Well hello there.  I know my blog presence has been spotty the past two weeks but I have been trying to focus on spending time with all of my family. 
Our Christmas was really nice. (I will do a proper recap when I can post from a computer.) I have eaten about a billion carbs over the last few days and will begin detoxing myself immediately!  I plan to get back to my health routine asap because honestly I feel like crap
That is all I have for now.  Be sure to send me your holiday pics so you can enter my holiday photo contest HERE

Check back on Friday, I will be sharing MJs birth story for her 5th bday!

Until next time,

Friday, December 20, 2013

$75 Target ecard Giveaway

Hey sorry I have been m.i.a. this week.  I have been so busy.  Promise I will be back at it next week.  Anywho a blog I sponsor is hosting a giveaway to say thank you to her sponsors.  I want my readers to win so go HERE to enter.

Until next time,

Friday, December 13, 2013

Too Fat

This morning MJ came to me and said "Jane Doe said I was too fat to color".  Whoa, what????  I asked her what she did about it.  She replied,"I told the teacher and she talked to Jane Doe".  Now don't get me wrong I don't think the little girl really knew what she was saying but it troubles me because those words were heard/learned somewhere. She could have heard this from her parents, TV, out shopping, etc. 

"You're too fat to" really tugs on my heart because starting in junior high I was "too fat" and boys didn't want to go out with me.  I remember a boy asked my weight one time, I fibbed and said I was lighter than I was. My best friend at the time, who happened to be skinny as a rail, said he is not going to believe you because you are really big.  Thanks for being a good friend.  That was the first moment I began to hate myself.  {Side note: In junior high I wore like a size 13/14, not fat in my book}  Then as time moved on and I became more self-conscious of my body and more depressed that I wasn't "skinny" like my friends I would emotionally eat.  I can remember a family member telling me when I was a Freshman in  high school, "Amanda, you are getting too big, no boy is going to want to marry you". Ouch! Who says things like that to a loved one?  When you keep hearing the same negative things over and over you begin to believe it.  Luckily, I met a boy who didn't see me like that.  He thinks I am perfect and beautiful.  Brent has spent the last 12+ years telling me these things but I was so damaged that it took me until now to believe him.  

I never want MJ to go through life hating herself and feeling like she is not good enough for all life has to offer especially love.  My greatest fear is she will experience this type of heart break and learn to hate herself like I did so long ago.  I tell her everday before she leaves you look beautiful today and I love you.  She gets a cute little smile on her face says "I love you too momma" and goes to school happy.  I am breaking the cycle.

Until next time,

Monday, December 9, 2013

What I'm eating

I have had a couple people ask what I eat as I am losing the weight.  So I put together a photo food journal of a typical day for my readers.  I have 50 points to eat on the Weight Watchers Points Plus program and here is a sample of what I eat.

Breakfast 8:15 a.m. - 3 boiled egss and a banana

6 WW points
Morning Snack 10:30 a.m. - Luna Bar

5 WW points
Lunch 12:30 p.m. - Beef stew

11 WW points
Afternoon Snack #1 2:45 p.m. - Fat free strawberry Greek yogurt with 1 tbsp of mini chocolate chips added
4 WW points
Afternoon Snack #2 4:15 p.m. - 1/4 cup banana chips
 8 WW points
Dinner 7:00 p.m. - Crock pot Potato Soup and a garden salad

 10 WW points
There you have it what I eat.  Like I mentioned before I have 50 points and this totaled to 44 points.  I try to get as close to my limit as possible without going over.  I probably could have added an apple and peanut butter as an evening snack and came closer but I just wasn't hungry.  I don't deprive myself of eating I just make better choices and use portion control.
Don't forget about my holiday photo challenge.  Read about it HERE.
Until next time,

Thursday, December 5, 2013

Christmas Traditions

Today I am linking up with Holly and talking about my family's Christmas traditions.

Y'all I cannot even put into words how much I LOVE Christmas!  I think I love the traditions that go along with it just as much.  This year I am super excited as this will be our first Christmas in our new house.

Here are some of our family traditions.

Christmas tree goes up the Friday after Thanksgiving.

Christmas Eve is pretty low-key at our house.  We spend the day just hanging out and getting ready for Christmas Day.  Then we go to church and then drive around looking at Christmas lights afterwards.  {Shout out to all the people who still take the time to decorate your house with lights, The Schraders appreciate you!}

After we return home on Christmas Eve then we start up A Christmas Story movie.  We watch it non-stop through Christmas Day and it never gets old in our house....never. 

Christmas Day both our parents come and we celebrate Christmas and Madelynn's b-day since it is 2 days after Christmas. One day we will throw her a real b-day party but she is fine with this set-up for now.  {Don't worry she doesn't get "short changed", we celebrate her b-day with just us on the 27th.}

What are some Christmas traditions in your family?

Until next time,

Monday, December 2, 2013

Thanksgiving Recap and Holiday Photo Challenge

Well hello there, it has been a while!  Let us begin with a recap of Thanksgiving.  I stuck to my plan and made my delicious Thanksgiving meal.  Then my mom showed up with a pecan pie and a coconut cream pie.  Temptation overload.  I had a piece of each and it was so gosh darn good I wanted to cry.  I wouldn't say my eating was completely terrible over the holiday but I could have made some better choices.  Also, I didn't eat enough food at regular intervals so I only lost .2 pounds this week.  I have a problem with skipping meals on the weekends.  However, I have mentally recommitted to my healthy lifestyle and am ready to see some great results in December.

Now on to the holiday photo challenge.  A couple of weeks ago I wrote about self-perception and a reader left a comment with a link to a post.  This post really hit home with me.  To sum it up the author talked about how we avoid the camera because all we see are the self-perceived negative physical characteristics like our weight or double chin and how those who truly love us don't see us that way.  I myself have missed out on captured memories because I didn't have make-up on, felt incredibly fat, or was worried about my crooked teeth and didn't want there to be photo proof of my insecurities.  Because of this there are hardly any pictures of me with Madelynn during the first couple years of her life.  That makes me so incredibly sad.

So this is my challenge to my readers.  Make a change this holiday season and get on the other side of the camera.  I am providing some monetary motivation by giving away a $30 Target gift card.  Here is what you need to do to enter the challenge.

1. Get in front of the camera this holiday season and become part of those memories.
2. Email your favorite pics to me.  {Each photo counts as an entry and I will accept up to five per person.}

Photo entries will be accepted until January 3rd.  On January 6th I will announce the winner and include picture submissions in a blog post.  If you would like to include your blog link or FB page link send it with your photos and I will include it in the blog post on January 6th. 

Here are a couple of me over Thanksgiving.  Even though there are a number of things I could find wrong with them I am CHOOSING to focus on what I like about them.
Hubby and me.  12+ years strong.

Snapping green beans, pioneer woman style.  (Hubby took this one)

I can't wait to see your beautiful faces in your holiday pics.

Until next time,

Monday, November 25, 2013

Thanksgiving Feast

Thanksgiving week is here!  As much as I would like to eat myself into a food induced coma, not gonna happen this year.  We are staying home and I am planning on trying a "reduced fat" version of Thanksgiving dinner.  My menu plan is below.

Turkey - I bought a pre-smoked turkey, all I have to do is heat that sucker up.

Roasted Baby Red Potatoes - I coat a 13x9 baking dish with about 2 tbsp olive oil then place garlic and rosemary seasoned potatoes in the pan and bake for about 30 min at 425 degrees.

Garden Salad - It's salad, you toss the desired veggies in a bowl and have at it.

Sweet Potatoes - Brent has to have his sweet potatoes, so I am using fresh sweet potatoes instead of the canned ones.  I will use spray butter, a little brown sugar, and of course a few marshmellows on top to jazz them up.

Corn - I just buy a steamable bag of frozen corn, done and done.

Bacon Green Beans  - This is a new one, I have never liked green beans but I am willing to try fresh green beans with a little bacon.   
Yellow Squash -  I just cut it up put it in a pan with some olive oil and season with garlic salt.  I cook it just enough to make it slightly soft.  Soggy veggies are not my thing.
Dessert - My mom is in charge of this and I am oh so sure she will not be making anything "light".  I will just have let myself have a taste and move on.

What are you planning for Thanksgiving?

Oh by the way I added new progress pics.  Check them out here.
Until next time,

Friday, November 22, 2013

Welcome new readers!

I want to welcome all my new readers and followers!  I was so paranoid that no one would read my blog much less comment on my posts.  Y'all know how to make a gal feel loved.  Thank you from the bottom of my heart.

A blog I sponsored this month is giving away a $75 target e-giftcard as a way to say thank you to her sponsors.  I want my readers and followers to have a chance to win some money!

If you want to enter check out her post HERE.

I will be posting new progress pics on Monday so be sure to check back!

Until next time,

Wednesday, November 20, 2013

Self-Perception and Photos

I overheard a conversation between two high school girls the other day.  It went something like this “Oh you posted that pic to Facebook?  I hate that picture of me, I look fat and ugly!”  The girl saying this was slightly overweight and she was clearly frustrated with the way she looked in the photo.  After hearing this I started thinking how many times I have been in that same situation, hating the way I looked in a photograph.  Trying to make sure I was photographed from a good angle.

In all honesty I don’t feel like I look.  I feel much smaller than what I am and when I see a picture of myself I always think is that how I really look?  I really believe I am a skinny girl trapped in a fat girl’s body.  I dream about what it is like to be skinny.  I often wonder how I will feel or what my body will look like after I lose all the weight.  I have never been skinny and cannot imagine what it will be like when I get there.

The thoughts are what keeps me motivated on days when I really want to stuff my face or give up all together.  I want my outside to look like how I feel on the inside.  I don’t want to there to be a disconnect of my self-perception and the picture. 

This is me today, feeling confident and pretty on the inside. Here's to making it show on the outside.
Until next time,


Tuesday, November 12, 2013

This or That link up 90's edition

1. Will Smith now, or Will Smith Then
Will Smith then.  I love Fresh Prince.

2. Platform Sandles, or Clear Plastic Sandles
Platform sandals, I had a pair exactly like these in 5th grade.  Fell down a flight of stairs in them, in front of a boy I liked...true story.

3. Tomagotchi's or Nano Babies
I never had either one of these.  I thought they were lame, plus my parents wouldn't spend money on them.
4. TGIF Line Up or Nick After Dark
TGIF for sure had all the classics.


5. JTT or Devon Sawa.
Um neither, I was drooling over this hottie.  Gwen Stefani is one lucky gal.
 What are some of your favorite things from the 90's?  Tell me in the comment section below.
Until next time,
This or That Link Up

Monday, November 11, 2013

Oh Monday we meet again.

My feelings exactly.

I can't believe it is Monday again. This week is gonna be crazy.  The movers are coming at 9:00 a.m. on Saturday and I am not ready.  I need to pack up my kitchen for the move but I don't want to have to eat out and blow the progress I have made.  Eating out is unhealthy and you give up control over your food.  I need to get creative and come up with a solution and do my best to manage this week.  I did not work out at all last week so I am going to try and focus on getting my sweat on.  My sanity needs it this week.

If moving, working and going to school weren't enough, Madelynn is sick.  Woke up at 3:00 a.m. on Sunday burning up and coughing.  Awesome.  I hate when she is sick but I do enjoy the extra cuddles.  There is an upside to everything

We spent a good portion of the day doing things like this.  Let the pic serve as a reminder, even when you are down there is always a reason to smile.

Looking forward to decorating the new house and will be posting pics once I get it all prettied up.

Until next time,

Thursday, November 7, 2013

We are homeowners again!

After 6 incredibly long months we are home owners again.  We decided last Spring that it was time to sell our starter home and begin looking for our "forever" home.  After looking around we decided to meet with a local builder and on impulse signed a contract to build before even putting our house on the market. 

Luckily our old house sold within 5 weeks but the downside was we have had to live in a tiny old apartment for the last 6 months and move twice (Brent megaloathed the moving twice thing).

It is really amazing to watch your dream materialize.


I still can't believe this is our new home.  This is hands down the nicest house I have ever called home.  I thank God for blessing us with such a beautiful home and family.  I definitely have a lot to be thankful for this holiday season and always.
Until next time,

Wednesday, November 6, 2013


You are an obsession
I cannot sleep
I am your possession
I am sick in the head y'all.  I literally weigh myself a billion times a day, I am scale obsessed.  I will weigh myself first thing when I wake up, then after my shower and one more time before I put my clothes on for work.  If there was a scale at work I bet I would weigh myself there too. What a freak! Just for pure torture, I weigh myself in the evening also, multiple times. Pretty much anytime I see the scale I think "better check my weight".  Even Brent has asked "you are weighing yourself again?" Yes I am, don't judge me!

So I have held an intervention for myself.
I have started by cutting back to once every other day, baby steps.  Eventually I want to cut back to one weekly weigh-in and not obsess over that fricken number everyday of my life.
Moment of truth, I really just want to hurry up and lose all this weight but I must be patient.  I mean I didn't pack it all on in a couple of months it took years to wreck my body.
Have you ever been scale obsessed during weightloss?  Comment below with how you got over it.
Until next time,


Friday, November 1, 2013

Halloween Recap

Halloween is over and I made it all day without eating one piece of candy!  Halleluyer, thank you Jesus!  I did have some chips and queso but didn't over do it.

Anyway, we started our Halloween festivities on Sunday.  We took Madelynn to her school festival.

Madelynn was the cutest little bumblebee on the planet.  Look at that pose, DIVA!

She played games.
 She decorated a baby pumpkin.


They even had litter boxes for the potty-trained children.  Just jokes! It was a treasure hunt.

 She had so much fun she ended it with a candy induced coma.
Last night we took her trick or treating but after a long day in her costume and all day partying she decided she was done after a few houses. Can I get an AMEN!
Can't believe October is over but I am ready to tackle November.  I will be posting progress pics around the middle of the month so be sure to check back.
Until next time,
Prototype Mama