Category Archives: Honey

Double duty workout

I realized that I never filled you all in on how my presentation went last Tuesday.

Basically, it could have gone a whole lot better. We were short a group member and had to fill in her parts, which proved to be much more difficult than we thought it would be. I felt like I did a really great job with my part (especially when I led the audience in some exercises!), but as a whole, we lost our footing a few times.

We didn’t end up winning, but it wasn’t because of our presentation skills. We technically have someone at the university who is willing to roll out our project starting in January, so the judges basically said we had already ‘won.’ I’m just so thankful it is over and I can get back to giving 100% to my regular job! I’ll keep you all updated on how the classes go because I’m pretty sure I’ll be signing up for some.

For now though, I’m going to stick to the crazy workouts I get to do at home.

Yesterday, I did three separate workouts. Two were planned, but the third wasn’t.

I’ve been neglecting my abs lately, so I knew I needed to dedicate a workout to just my abs this weekend. I did a 25 minute hodge-podge workout with any abs exercise I could think of. It was great! And I felt really strong for having not done a proper abs workout in forever.

Then, I wanted to go for a run because I’ve also been skimping on that since it has gotten cold. I did a quick two mile run and I felt like I could run forever!!! It was the perfect temperature outside and the gorgeous sunshine made everything look especially beautiful. I would have run longer, but before I left, my honey said he was going to do another type of workout and I wanted to make sure I was back for it.

He was cutting wood for our stove!

Instead of a traditional heating system for our house, we heat with a wood stove. They are very common in our area and my honey grew up with one in their basement. The stove also heats our hot water, and it is the most cozy heat you could imagine. The actual stove is outside and looks like this.

This was the very first fire in the stove!

Now, I can’t really get into all of the specifics about how it actually works because I’m not really sure. But, I can tell you how we cut the wood for it!

Obviously we need a lot of wood in the winter to keep the stove going (we usually put wood in the stove in the morning and in the evening when it gets really cold). Luckily, we live on 82 acres, most of which is woodland, so there is no shortage of trees to chop up. However, we rely on our own (wo)manpower to do the chopping! This has proved to be one of the best workouts I’ve ever done and is now one of my favorite ways to get a full body workout in!

When I first met my honey, we cut wood for his parents’ stove. I was pretty weak back then and could really only load the cut up wood onto the truck (and sometimes I could barely do that!). Every once in awhile I would try splitting some pieces with the splitting maul, but I wouldn’t have much success.

Now that I work out regularly, I can really tell how much stronger I’ve gotten. I’m actually able to split some of the wood!

Yes, I am wearing my running clothes. And no, I didn’t get this one on the first try! I say it’s a much better workout if you have to hit each piece multiple times 🙂 But, it’s not as efficient and we’d be there forever if I was the only one splitting.

However, my honey has been cutting wood his entire life, so he is much better at it than me!

Just look at that form! And I’m pretty sure he got this on two tries 🙂

Not only is splitting the wood an excellent workout, but loading the pieces onto the truck is also. I use different techniques to load it so I can work all parts of my body. I do the chest press pass, the side twist and heave (alternating sides!), and the squat and throw. I’ll even do overhead shoulder presses if I have two smaller pieces. Or some biceps curls 🙂

I’m telling you, it’s a great way to stay in shape during the winter months. If you’re looking for a new workout to try, let me know and I’m sure we will need the help 🙂

Below was two weeks ago when it was 60 degrees out! It just shows you how often we have to cut wood around here.

My honey first cuts up the trees with the chainsaw, and then stands them on end to split.

The main thing I love about this ‘workout’ is that I’m actually accomplishing something that needs to get done while torching calories and building muscle!

Anyone want to give it a try? 🙂


A Friday evening list

This photo has nothing to do with my list...but I promise I will post more from this photo shoot soon!

1. My honey is at a conference, so Titan and I will be enjoying a nice, productive, but relaxing evening together!

2. Drinking hot chocolate before bed isn’t a good idea if you want to get a good night’s sleep.

3. I’m working on a post about my honey. I’m thinking of revealing his name…

4. I’m pretty much addicted to “How I Met Your Mother.” I sort of have an inappropriate crush on Barney, aka Neil Patrick Harris, aka Doogie Howser. Look him up. He’s legendary.

5. We bought Titan boots/slippers/shoes. I’m a little embarrassed to admit it, but I’m really excited to show you a picture soon because it is just funny!

6. I have a busy weekend with two photo shoots and two shows for my other business. I’ll be making the dolla dolla bills ya’ll!! (Which I will promptly spend on cashews to make more cashew butter and cookies!)

7. I’m still working on my recipe page…just need to find a few more hours in the day!

8. I’m going to have my Tuesday Trainer video submitted by Sunday night! I’m going to have my Tuesday Trainer video submitted by Sunday night! I’m going to have my Tuesday Trainer video submitted by Sunday night! (If I keep saying it, it’ll actually happen :))

9. I’m super stoked about the 2012 Healthy Living Blogger’s Retreat in Boulder come May!!! I will definitely keep you updated as more plans are made 🙂

10. So glad it’s Friday!!!!

Quick Sunday Recap

We had quite the eventful day today, but I’m super tuckered out from it, so I’m going to make this quick!

Thanks everyone for the well wishes for my honey! I greatly appreciate it 🙂 He went to sleep at 9pm last night…then I remembered that I had to set the clocks back, so really he went to sleep at 8pm. He woke up at 8am this morning…he must have really been tired! Although he wasn’t feeling 100%, he said he was feeling better. I gave him more tea and more supplements to start the day.

I woke up at 5:30am to let Titan out and feed him. I decided to just stay up and get some stuff done around the house. Plus, I wanted to do a killer upper body workout, so I took advantage of the time alone. I did the following workout, which is a combo of a few Oxygen mag workouts.

  • Bench Press 2×15
  • Seated row 2×20
  • Bent-over row 2×20
  • Lat pulldown 2×12
  • Good morning 2×15
  • Arnold press 2×15
  • Seated press 2×15
  • Reverse curl 2×10
  • Hammer curl 2×12
  • Biceps curl 2×12
  • Triceps kickback 2×12
  • One-arm triceps extension 2×10
  • Triceps pushdown 2×12
  • Dumbbell pull and press 2×10
  • Rear delt row 2×15
  • Lateral raise to front pull 2×12
  • Overhead dumbbell arc 2×12

It was awesome and I’m pretty sure I’m going to be feeling it tomorrow! I did an upper body workout on Friday, and although I hadn’t planned on doing another one today, I figured I might as well since it had been 48 hours since I did the last one. Plus, I wasn’t sure when I would have time to do such an intense workout again.

As I mentioned the other day, I set out a 5 day plan for my workouts. Today, I was supposed to go for an 8 mile hike with my honey. However, I sort of forgot that we had nursery duty at church at 11am. Because the hike is about an hour and a half away and would take approximately 5 hours to complete, there was no feasible way we could make it out there and back before it got too dark. So instead, we took our pup for a 4 mile hike closer to our house. This was the second time we’ve done that hike, but it was Titan’s first time!

I’d say someone was excited!!!

Actually, he wasn’t…he seemed so tired, but he surprised us all by making it the whole time and still had energy to spare at the end!

Before we headed home for the hike, we went out for pizza at a local restaurant that now serves gluten-free meals. I haven’t had pizza in quite some time, so I was excited to try it out. Check out what I got with the pizza.

My very own pizza slicer! The server even let me take it home with me! The pizza looks really appetizing doesn’t it? It was actually pretty good, but you could definitely tell that it was pre-made and frozen…oh well. At least I got some pizza!

Anyways, back to the hike. I took almost 300 pictures on our hike, so I am going to have to recap the whole thing tomorrow. But for now, I will leave you with my favorite picture from today.

How was your Sunday?


Saturday morning run

I had a great run this morning! Even though it was hovering around the freezing mark, I bundled up and headed out.

There was a dense frost on the ground, but with the sun shining on it, it looked so beautiful! I don’t think these photos really capture it, but you get the idea.

I set out to do 4.5 miles and I didn’t care how I completed them. Usually I like to challenge myself to finish without stopping at all, but because it was so cold, I had to take a few short breaks.

I chose to run a flatter course than I normally do because it is hunting season. I typically run a nice hilly area on the edge of our property, but since we have people who hunt on the land, I decided to stay away. I ended up with an average pace of 9:19 a mile which is awesome for me, especially at that distance.

The run reminded me how much I miss running. I miss the solitude of a nice, long run, especially around here where I really don’t see anyone when I’m out running. It was nice to disconnect from technology for a bit (I might be attached to my phone just a bit…) and to just have time to think about stuff. I don’t really remember what I thought about, but I always do some good thinking when I run.

I really felt strong for most of the run, and I attribute part of it to my pre-run snack, which was also my breakfast. A square of my homemade granola bar, half an apple, and a glass of raw milk. It had enough simple and complex carbs, plus lots of good fats and protein to get me through it. My post-run snack/second breakfast was butternut squash pancakes. I seriously had these every day last week for breakfast. They are soooooo yummy! Again, they were loaded with good carbs, fats and protein to fill me up and repair my muscles.

After my run, I got a few things done around the house and then made a little money with my side job. It was a fun afternoon!

Now I’m about to eat dinner and take care my sick honey…he’s not really sick yet, but I need to make sure he doesn’t get all the way there. He is NOT FUN to be around when he doesn’t feel well. Maybe one day I’ll tell you all about the time I had to take him to the hospital shortly after we met….looking back I can laugh at how horrible he was, but in the moment, it was tough!

I’ve pumped him full of hot tea, veggies, water and supplements, so we’ll see how he feels in the morning. I really am looking forward to our hike tomorrow so I want him to feel better!!

What did you do today?

One year ago today…

One year ago today…

My honey and I moved into our house.

3 1/2 years ago today…

We started working on the house.

That’s what you call dedication.


This is what it looked like the day we started demolition on it.

This is what it looked like the day we moved into it (exactly 2 1/2 years later).

The time, energy, blood, sweat and tears we put into this house make it that much more special.

We weren’t sure what to expect the day we started tearing it apart. We knew it was log underneath, but there was no guarantee that the logs were in good shape. There was an addition on the right hand side that wasn’t log and that had a cellar underneath it. The log part was literally just sitting on the dirt.

Soon after we started demolition, we realized that the addition would have to be torn down. It just wasn’t going to withstand a renovation, so we had to plan where to put an addition because the cabin was too small by itself. Luckily, our decision was made for us by some rotted logs on the back side of the house (around the window and door).

Here’s what it looked like after it was torn down. You can see that the very bottom log looks newer because we had to replace it too. We were so fortunate to find one that fit perfectly!

We also decided to add a full basement underneath the entire house. This ended up being one of the best decisions since we will finish it off one day and have even more living space, but also keep some storage space. Building the basement was much easier said than done. Since the house was on the dirt, the whole thing had to be lifted up pretty high off the ground; enough so that a big machine could dig out underneath it. This was probably the scariest part because seeing the house balance on the cinder blocks made my heart tremor with each gust of wind that winter.

It sat like this as the basement was built. We had to ‘walk the plank’ to get into the front door for the longest time.

We ended up with a walkout basement and our bedroom up three stories! You can see my honey and his brother here putting some type of mud on the house as a primer to put up the rock. We had the scaffolding around the house for months! There were so many different layers of stuff they had to put up.

The stairs in our house are definitely my favorite part! They were custom made for us out of logs from another cabin. And my honey made the entire handrail. I sanded it a bunch, but he was the mastermind behind it! He actually made just about everything he could in/for our house. It’s awesome to walk around the house and be able to take pride in him for the hard work he put into building us a home.

My other favorite thing he did was the window trim. The inside of the house was covered in heart pine boards (to cover up the logs). He took all of it down and then sanded, cut, planed and stained the boards to make trim for all 20 windows and three doors in our house.

And my other fave thing is our cabin floor. My honey took up the original floor and he sanded, planed and stained those boards to redo the floor. It is absolutely gorgeous! And I actually got to help lay one of the boards 🙂

There were so many other things that happened and decisions we made to build our dream home, but there’s just too much to share here. And I have over 1000 pictures from the 2 1/2 year adventure…

There are still so many projects to work on in the house, but my honey has worked on a lot of stuff in the past year. For one, we got a real door on our bathroom. For almost 2 months, we had a giant piece of plywood that had an old time hook as a lock for it. It was pretty sad! He also finished our linen closet by making the shelves with a cedar tree that fell near our house in a bad snowstorm two years ago. Unfortunately, we are still without a proper closet for our clothes…but that’s next on the list (and has been for a year….)

Maybe one day I’ll be able to share more about it (maybe as other projects get finished around here!!).

I hope you all had a great Sunday! I’m going to go celebrate our one year with my honey by cuddling on our couch 🙂

Five years ago

Five years ago, I wasn’t a runner. I wasn’t a healthy eater. I wasn’t a happy person.

Five years ago, I was overweight.

Five years ago, I ate frozen pizza, Velveeta shells and cheese, Hungry Jack pancakes, and absolutely no vegetables.

Five years ago, I was not a good cook. I wouldn’t even have called myself a cook.

Five years ago, I was addicted to Breyer’s Carb Smart Vanilla ice cream with crushed up Reese’s Cups. Seriously addicted.

Five years ago, I couldn’t imagine myself ever getting married.

Five years ago, I met my honey:

To say my life changed five years ago is an understatement. It changed all right, but so did I.

Today, I am a runner. I am a super healthy eater. I am happier than ever!

Today, I am 30lbs lighter.

Today, I eat homemade gluten-free pizza crust with veggie toppings, homemade mac and cheese with broccoli, gluten-free pancakes with walnuts and flax seeds, and lots of salads!

Today, I confidently say I am a good cook (and my honey agrees :))

Today, I make my own ice cream at home, sweetened with maple syrup. Sans Reese’s Cups.

Today, I couldn’t imagine ever living without my honey!

Maybe one day I’ll share the story of how we met, but for now, I’m just going to thank God for bringing my honey into my life. I’m so glad I’m not the same person I was five years ago.


Pickin’ fruit

I am a fruit-pickin machine this summer!

It all started with blueberry picking way back in June. Then I did A LOT of blackberry picking throughout the summer. I also did a little peach picking at my aunt-in-law’s a few weeks back, but they were pretty tiny.

But today beats them all! As I mentioned yesterday, I made an apple cobbler with apples from our own tree. There were so many of them that were up too high for us to reach, so today we hauled out the big guns!

Yep! My honey loaded me in the bucket and raised me up to reach the apples! I was a bit scared at first, but it was such a cool experience knowing I was picking fruit from our own yard (seeing as how my garden has been pitiful this year, this was a big boost to the ego :)).

Going up!

This little guy held on all throughout the crazy wind yesterday!

The view from above 🙂 I will never get tired of this view!

Since my arms weren’t long enough, I had to use a stick to get the apples down. I felt like I was playing with a pinata!

My honey and Titan watched from below. They also thought it was funny to just leave me up there while they wrestled!

The back of our house. One day I plan to post about our house from start to finish (all 2 1/2 years of it!). The short version is this: we added the rock part onto the 18th century log cabin. I promise I’ll elaborate in the future 🙂 To see the front of the house, check out my About Me page.

The bounty of my efforts!

Haha! Just kidding! I got way more than that! Since I had to knock down most of them, my honey picked them up and put them in a bowl.

Flying high! Getting ready to go back down!

About them there peaches….

Last week, the people we get our raw milk from told me about a local orchard that only charges $15 a bushel for peaches! $15! That’s practically stealing them! Because I have been loving peaches for the past month or so (and spending $5 per 1/4 peck, which is like 7 or 8 peaches), I told my honey we needed to go find this orchard because I needed more peaches! So we loaded up our pup in the car and set out.

What a beautiful place! It is called High Places Orchard and it is right off of 522 outside of Front Royal (if anyone is in the area, I highly recommend going!). They also had about 10 different varieties of apples! We picked up some golden delicious, gala and one we’re not sure of! The best thing was you could mix and match any of the apples and it was still just $14 for a bushel!

Since it is just my honey and I, we opted for 1/2 a bushel of peaches and 1/2 a bushel of apples (yes, I realize that is still a crazy amount for two people, but we plan to share with family!). Plus, I picked up some local honey for pretty cheap. Grand total: $17.75!

Titan loved the adventure! He passed out on the way home and I’m hoping he’ll fall asleep again here soon so my honey and I can enjoy something peachy 🙂

Please share your favorite peach and apple recipes!!! Cobblers are already in the works, as are lots and lots of smoothies!