Ugh, not again!

“Can you make yellow cake with chocolate icing?” If I’ve heard it once, I’ve heard it a million times.  For some reason this is the most requested cake/icing combo that I get.  I guess I should be happy for multiple reasons:

1. Apparently people like the icing recipe I use

2. It is my least favorite cake/icing combo, so with my very lofty (and often ignored) weight loss goals, I should be thrilled to make it because I can resist it if/when I have the opportunity to partake in whatever I’m baking.

3. It is really, REALLY easy to make!

Everyone I know is having babies, just NOT ME!!!  I had yet another baby shower to attend last weekend, so I made this obscenely popular cupcake combo and didn’t have any to bring home.  You can use just about any cake recipe and the icing recipe is on the back of a Hershey Cocoa can, but you can also get it here.  This is a double recipe which is enough to ice two dozen cupcakes or a two layer cake.

1 1/3 c baking cocoa

1/2 c butter

1/2 c shortening

2/3 c milk

2 t vanilla

6 c powdered sugar

I mix all of the ingredients together and mix it for about 5 minutes.  The original recipe only calls for butter, but the shortening helps it spread a lot better and not melt in your hands when you’re piping it.

Enjoy!

Shake it Up

I am having a tough time turning 30 (more to come on this, I am sure).  I have always had some issues with this age , so this isn’t something that just popped up out of the blue now that I’m thisclose to turning 30.   So as with most things in my life approaching this “enormous” milestone, I am having some insecurities/doubts/crisies related to this blog.

When I started it, which let’s be honest, wasn’t all that long ago, I wanted it to be a funny yet cute way to express my feelings on being a mother, going through life events, baking, traveling and working out to lose baby weight.  Continuing with the brutal honesty, there are millions upon millions of blogs that have to do with all of these things together or separately.  Most of those blogs have millions and millions of faithful viewers.  Although I love each and every one of you, I have devoted my career path to media and advertising, so one would think I would have a pretty good understanding on how to market myself and this blog.

With that being said, I need to take a long hard look at what I want to accomplish and what I want this blog to be about.  I need to set myself apart from others that are out there or decide who I want my audience to be.  Is this blog just for me or is it for everybody else?  Do I want to devote my entire website to my new existence of being a mother (because there is no lack of those out there)?  Should I be just sharing baking ideas and recipes (again, take a look at Pintrest, there are already a lot of them)?  Will this blog be my opportunity to spread my writing wings?  I love to write, I think I’m pretty good at it, but there are MUCH better writers out there.  I can write about my weight loss journey, but right now there haven’t been very many milestones to celebrate.  As of four weeks ago, I was still carrying some pounds of baby weight in addition to the 20 pounds I had put on the 4 years leading up to pregnancy.  I can’t really write about running either.  Even though I have almost 14 years of experience under my belt, I still don’t love running and a 3 mile run will still elicit as many moans, groans and procrastinating as a half marathon.

Maybe my biggest issue about turning 30 (and this blog) is that I am living a pretty normal life.  I have a job, a house, a husband, a child and a dog.  I have the same struggles as most everyone.  There is never enough money, time or energy to accomplish everything I want to accomplish.  There are always bills to pay and pounds to lose.  Don’t get me wrong, I am immeasurably blessed in my life.  I have a wonderful husband with a pretty compelling love story to back it up, a son who is perfect in every way (at least in my eyes), the sweetest dog ever and we live a very, very comfortable lifestyle.  We go on trips.  More trips than most people, but less than others.  I have a job that I enjoy the majority of the time, but I still have gripes and grumps about it.  I wish I had more time to hang out with Chase and to write and to workout and to bake and so far there are dreams and wishes that have fallen by the wayside, but that’s normal.  I am so happy in my life and I have nothing to complain about (again with the brutal honesty).

So, excuse me while I have this bit of an identity crisis.  If you see a bit of a blog makeover, now you know why and for all of you faithful readers out there, thank you for your loyalty and I hope you enjoy this glimpse into myself and my life as much as I enjoy writing about it.

Some Would Call it Progress…

I would say my biggest (no pun intended) problem with trying to lose weight would be consistency.  I have been known to work out for a week, not lose any weight, stop working out, lose 2 pounds, so then try to do it by changing my diet, then proceed to eat without consequences, gain 4 pounds, then start the cycle all over again.  This has led to my current 7-10 pounds worth of baby weight that won’t budge on top of the 20 or so pounds that had crept up over the 3 years before that.

I’m trying to work on sticking with it.  I’ve decided to go at it focusing on both diet and exercise.  I’ve started keeping a food journal and I am very honest.  So honest that I feel bad writing down that I had 2 glasses of wine and four servings of Oreos at 10pm.  Or even a measly fun sized candy bar at work.  I realize that it has only been a week, but for me that is pretty groundbreaking.  I am also doing more exercising.  Tuesday and Thursday I worked out on the elliptical for 40 and 45 minutes, Wednesday I ran 3 miles, Friday I lifted weights, then yesterday I ran a 14K (8.7 miles).  I took off today because I know I won’t be motivated to run tomorrow if I did anything tonight (I do know that about myself).

As I have mentioned in an earlier post, I have already registered for a half marathon in March (5 weeks from today), and the registration for the Marine Corp Marathon opens on March 7th and if I am feeling really motivated, I will register for that.  That way I can cross something off of my bucket list, hopefully get into great shape, do the majority of my training over the summer and maybe lose some weight in the process.

I am not weighing myself this seventy-second attempt at weight loss since Chase was born because it hasn’t served much of a purpose up until this point, so if/when my clothes start feeling a bit loose, I will eventually step on them again.  I’ve had seventy-one failures behind me though and I would like this to be the one that sticks.  I’ve got a monumental birthday coming up next month, I would like to be able to wear my wedding rings again, fit into clothes that I enjoy wearing and also enjoy a baked good every now and then without feeling so guilty.

Wish me luck!