Tag Archives: working out


GUYS. This week is freaking awesome, and it’s Tuesday. I would let you guess, but I’m fresh from a work out and amped up on a protein shake (and a mini kit kat), so I’m just going to tell you.

1. Today my brother and his beautiful wife are welcoming their second baby girl into the world. If you don’t like kids, please stop reading my blog. Kids are awesome, and I’m pretty excited that we’re adding grandchild #12 to the ranks.
2. Valentine’s Day is this week. I could care less about the commercialized holiday itself, but I am fond of pretty flowers and fancy chocolates and telling the world how much I love my husband. It’s also a fun day to give little homemade Valentines and gifts to friends and loved ones.
3.Mini Gwinn is full on walking, talking, and growing more adorable every day. Proof:

Driving daddy's Jeep

Driving daddy’s Jeep

No joke, he LIKES wearing his sunglasses. And driving Captain Laser Pants’ Wrangler. And he doesn’t have any problem shifting the gears (well, he can’t reach the clutch, but don’t tell HIM that). Even when he’s making this face (because I make him climb on the couch without my assistance and he yells at me):

"Help me up, vile woman!"

“Help me up, vile woman!”

He’s still adorable. And sometimes he’s placid and content, like when we’re driving around in my awesome car:


Ignoring the fact that “American Tail” is on for his viewing pleasure.

Wait, what?!
4. Captain Laser Pants FIXED MY FREAKING JEEP! That’s right, interwebs, MY HUSBAND THE IT SOFTWARE DEVELOPER REPLACED A REDONK COMPLICATED ENGINE IN MY CAR. He, with muscle and brawn and steel and brains, replaced my engine and a hundred other parts (like the water pump, the intake manifold, the sensors) and brought my beautiful Grand Cherokee back to liiiiiiiiiiiife. Who has six thumbs and is super stoked about this? Team freaking Gwinn, that’s who.

We are planning a baby Valentine’s Party. Because there isn’t anything cuter than that. What are you doing for Hallmark Day, interwebs?


Goings On (Things That are New)

In the past month:

-mini Gwinn has said “nice”, “I love you”, “dog”  and “I did it”. This is in addition to his already awesome vocabulary of “mama”, “dada”, “oh yeah”, “boo- dee (booty)”, and a few other things I’m forgetting. 

-mini Gwinn started taking steps on his own. Finally. I think his head has just been too big to carry around on his own.

-I’m down to 13% body fat. Woot woot!

-Remember that jeep I posted about in July? The one that died? It is SO CLOSE to having the engine replaced I can taste it. Hopefully this week. Yes, I’ve been without my amazing car for six months. 

-I want to do this character costume for D*C 2013, you know, if the world hasn’t ended by then. 

-The world may end Friday, so I’ve been training for that. “Training” really has just included video games and working out. Not my best planning, in hindsight. 

What’s new with you, interwebs?


Typically when I sit down to write a blog I have a vague idea of what I want to say without any sort of “pre- writing”. Most of what I write isn’t polished, nor are there multiple versions before the “finished product” is posted to the interwebs. Today is no different. Honestly, I wasn’t planning on saying anything today.

But, readers, today I am overwhelmed.

It’s no small secret that I handle minor stresses badly. Having a baby? No big. Dishes in the sink? My face could explode. Running late for an appointment? I may blow up the house. Clearly, I should be working on how to manage stress in my life. Normally I work out until I just don’t have the energy to care. Take that away and I actually create problems, usually making a stress mess from nothing.

I haven’t been to the gym in a week. For some that’s not a big deal at all (“Hey, I haven’t been to the gym in 35 years, yuk yuk”), for others that’s mind blowing.

I may actually develop super powers and blow up our entire block because of the pent up energy I have.

It’s not out of laziness, I can assure you. With mini Gwinn’s changing nap routine (he’s growing up, after all- he said his first word on Father’s Day!), the usual time I go to the gym has shifted from the late morning to not at all. The childcare is only open until 1 PM (getting out of the house by noon is next to impossible with his new nap time that he’s selected), so by the time he’s up, fed, changed and I’ve changed clothes after having food thrown at me, it’s 12:45. Captain Laser Pants asked why I didn’t just do what I had planned and ignore the little dude’s nap. “Just put him in the car and go,” I believe, were his exact words.

Any parent knows that an interrupted nap is worse than no nap. To his credit, CLP doesn’t usually see our baby in daytime hours during the week- he wouldn’t know what a napless mini Gwinn looks like. Of course I didn’t follow his suggestion. I’m giving our baby what he needs. So after figuring out the new nap time and duration, I cleverly planned our morning around it and accommodated for the time. We were ready for the gym at our new time and BAM- I couldn’t find my key. Ten minutes later I asked CLP if he had it. He found it in his pocket. At work. Our new car has one key with a broken ring hole- it has been lost several times since the purchase of said vehicle. This minor stress has been accepted and isn’t really an issue. What compounded my reaction was that, after a week of no gym, I also realized that our little guy needs his acid reflux medicine, we’re out of baby wipes, and I need more vegetables to make solid food for the kid. Bonus- I dropped a heavy muffin tin on my toes this morning, my little guy has thrown up on me twice since 10 AM, and I have the caffeine shakes. Don’t get me started on the lack of dinner for tonight.

I’m a little overwhelmed today.

Being a stay at home mom can be overwhelming. I have a house that I can barely keep neat, let alone clean and organized. The three dogs tend to get in all kinds of trouble throughout the day. The baby has discovered new and unusual ways to cause injury to me (he flails his arms in the general direction of my cyst- covered face and leans away from my body, making my arm go numb from holding him). Some days are hard. Some days I want to throw bricks at glass panes. Some days I am amazed at the accumulation of laundry that has developed in the course of three hours. Some days I want to run full speed off the Empire State Building.


He’s totally worth the stress.

At 6 PM (when my little guy has chosen to make his bed time) I squish my little man up against my chest, feed him, sing him a lullaby, and stroke his hair until he falls asleep peacefully in my arms. Whether or not the day has defeated me, the evening brings a precious peace that feels like melting into a hot bath filled with lavender oil (Wow, that sounds lovely right now). I sneak into his nursery several times between 6:30 PM and when I finally fall asleep just so I can steal a kiss or stare lovingly at my sleeping child.

Funny- even imaging it has calmed my frayed nerves. I suppose it’s all about putting into perspective the paces through which we put ourselves every day. Keeping in mind the obstacles life throws at us, being overwhelmed is normal, nay, expected. Accepting that every hour is different and rising to the challenge of a new day? That’s part of being a mom.

Now, about that lavender bath…

Admiration and Intimidation at the Gym

Firstly, I want to thank all the new followers and readers! I appreciate the support and the shares.

Today I’m taking a break from the “maintenance of marriage” series (as seen here, here aaaaand here) . Feel free to submit your ideas for more posts in the series, because I’m running low!

In other news…

There seems to be a direct correlation between the size of a woman’s fake boobs, orange-ness of her tan and the amount of skin she has exposed at the gym and my immediate attitude towards her. Completely petty and shallow? Yes. Then again, I don’t claim to be “mature” and “deep”, so get off your high horse for a second. I promise this will (may) get better.

I work out semi- religiously at LA Fitness. It’s not exactly a prestigious club, but it has everything I need and the cost is excellent. Added bonus- there are three within fifteen minutes of our home. The one where I usually go is in an area that is, ahem, a bit pretentious. The commonly known “East Cobb snobs” nickname isn’t unearned. That’s not to say that all East Cobbians are snobs, but most of them do hold the title with pride. I digress (just trying to give a proper mental picture, yeesh). Since I’m officially a suburbanite stay at home mom, I go to the gym in the late morning- after the little dude has eaten, napped and eaten again, and most (ok, maybe only one or two) of the household chores are done. Apparently, late morning is the prime time for stay at home moms (or trophy wives, it all depends) to get their fitness on. The gym has plenty of us present between the hours of 10 AM and 1 PM. Here’s a nice rundown of the categories into which we fall:

-The mom whose children are clearly much older and self sufficient than mine. She has a giant SUV that costs a year’s salary. Her hair is bleached blonde (of course), brushed and neatly pulled into a ponytail. Her Nike running shoes appear to be brand new, as do her matching Nike running shorts and compression tank top. She is thin, bordering on skinny, tans at a moderately frequent rate, and her name is probably “Buffy” or some equally 1980’s country club name. She intimidates me.

-The mom who probably isn’t a mom at all, but more than likely a trophy wife to a much older, successful business man. She has gigantic, Dolly Parton- esque breast implants that are placed ridiculously close to her chin. She is orange from daily tanning/ spray tanning. She is wearing only a sports bra that barely encases her ridiculous tatas and a pair of micro-shorts to show off whatever she is inclined to show off. Her hair, bleached blonde, is down and styled. She is wearing full makeup. She leg presses 20 lbs. She flirts with every male trainer present on the floor. From a distance she looks 22, up close she looks to be in her late 40s with a belly button jewel. She irritates and intimidates me.

-The mom wearing a “10k for Childhood Diabetes Cure” shirt, which she got last week in the race. Her kids’ ages are unknown. Her arms are viciously toned and tanned from driving her kids everywhere. Her legs are pillars of granite. Her hair is hidden under a ball cap. She bench presses more than I weigh and she’s half my size. Her kids are well behaved, but still acting like children when she picks them up from the gym daycare. They ask if they can go to McDonald’s, she obliges. I admire this woman.

-Me. I am wearing one of Captain Laser Pants’ t-shirts or something of my own that is equally ill-sized and tacky. CLP’s socks. My running shoes have ketchup that mini- Gwinn threw on them (true story). I haven’t brushed my hair in at least two days (another sad, true story). Headphones blaring something aggressive that usually enforces my lack of smile/ hard stare at the gym. I see myself in the mirror doing tricep extensions- I intimidate myself, which makes me smile, because that is funny. I’m not intimidating.

Once in a while a stranger (a woman) will ask me about a certain exercise I’m doing. I’ll take the headphones out of my ears, demonstrate, make a self deprecating joke, smile and move on. On the gym floor, I’m not exactly good at making friends. My music is too loud for me to usually hear, I’m running to each machine or weight between sets, and I’ve seen myself- I look crazy and intense. Usually the women I’m watching (that sounds creepier than it is, I promise), the women I admire, look similar. They’re not at the gym for social hour- they’re there to work. Their time is as limited as mine, and although their health is important to them, they clearly have other places to be. They are usually sweating as much as I am, if not more- they are pushing themselves.

If I’m feeling bold, I say something to them between sets. Something like, “You’re a rock star” or “You’re awesome” is about as creative as I get without sounding creepy. But I mean it. As insecure as I am (especially at the gym), I think it’s important to encourage the women I admire. The trainers aren’t coming over to us to comment on our mad skills (they’re busy with the oompa loompa showing off her cleavage). The other women aren’t exactly complimentary. In a society (and this particular gym) where women are supposed to be “competitive,” when we encourage one another, it’s validating. I’m not saying we all need validation from strangers, but by that same token, it’s not like our kids are thanking us for being strong. And, strangely enough, after I say something to them, I don’t feel intimidated. Instead, I want to go push myself to try a new exercise or to bump weights.

By the time I’ve made it to the nursery to pick up my little guy, I’m usually smiling (dripping with sweat, but still smiling). After a good workout and an effort to be nice, I feel softer and less testosterone-y. It’s usually the days that I go to the gym and work like a man that I feel most feminine. The strength I’ve tested, the intimidation I’ve quelled, and the encouragement I’ve doled out- those are all part of what “being a woman” is all about.

Up next: I have no idea. You should suggest something in the comments! 😀 Seriously.

My Vampire Child and My Inability to Escape Him

Mini Gwinn has attempted to suck my blood, or at the very least, gummed my shoulders, hands and face. He is a drooling, grumbling mess of a six month old baby. Over the weekend he cut one of his canine teeth (there is a tiny little bud sticking out- adorable and disconcerting all at once), and it looks like the other is soon on its way. As an avid sci- fi and fantasy fan, I’m quite happy that mine is a vampire child, complete with vampire teeth and a suddenly nocturnal nature, but also missing my previously happy and cuddly baby boy that was sleeping peacefully for thirteen hours a night (for real).


blue steel

the mini Gwinn has a killer “blue steel”

Teething, I’ve been told, lasts until children are seventeen years old, give or take a few years. This concerns me, largely because he’s not going to be adorable or cuddly ever again. His funny personality has been overcome by a perpetually grouchy persona that, when paired with incessant drooling, completely detracts from his good looks. Rather than having strangers approach us wherever we go to tell me how beautiful my baby is, we now part the crowds like Moses and the Red sea so they can avoid this howling terror.


To make matters worse, I managed to injure myself while attempting plyometrics a few weeks ago. Super. My options are a) quit running, b) physical therapy, and/or c) surgery. I’ve worked on giving my stupid knee time and rest to heal, but between constantly moving to appease vampire mini Gwinn and my absolute need to stay active, rest really isn’t an option.


To add insult to injury, my car has finally been put out to pasture. That blissful hour of escape from mini Gwinn at the gym (God bless those sweet women in child care at our gym) has been stolen from me. Captain Laser Pants is buying me a new mom-mobile (no minivans, people) in the next few days, but until then, I am (mostly) homebound with a monster attempting to convert me to his vampiric, nocturnal ways. We’ve been walking through our absolutely wonderful neighborhood, but that’s not exactly rest for the old knee.


So, I’m carrying around this nineteen pound six month old (he’s a giant vampire- a new breed of monster for the horror films) all day, letting him gum my shoulder and scream at me when he’s uncomfortable (I really do feel terrible that he’s in pain, honestly). My right arm and hand have been going numb from the weight, and I’m fairly certain I’ve lost hearing in my right ear. Perhaps, after the new car purchase, I should look into a bionic right half of a body to buy.


Can vampires turn robots?