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The year, 2013, is finally here. The year I turn the BIG, 3-0. I have made a New Year’s Resolution to get into the best shape of my life, and I knew that was going to take a lot of hard work and dedication.
A year ago, I went to a mother of twins conference in Temecula, and I will never forget one of the guest speakers, a plastic surgeon, who was there to talk to moms about having a tummy tuck. He said that our tummy’s have stretched so far, our abs have detached, and all the exercise in the world will never get us back in our bikini. My jaw dropped. I guess my fate was already written, and I started to accept the body I had.
After having twins, I knew my body would never be the same again. It was hard to find any me time, and I was brilliant at coming up with excuses to avoid my personal time, but I realized that was not healthy. Inside, I was depressed, that no matter how much work I did, I would never get my body back.
I battled the weight loss for a year and a half after having the girls. When I finally thought I was “acceptable,” I bought new clothes. After the holidays, and eating a lot of junk food, I came home only to find out that those same clothes were feeling snug.
Enough, was enough.
It was time to change. It was time to get healthy. It was time to prove that it can be done. I was not going to accept someone telling me, what I can and can not do. I decided that it was time to change.
This New Year’s rolled around, and I lost the excuses and I made the time. I started off doing Jillian Michaels Ripped in 30 DVD on January 5th. I remember week one, I thought I was going to keel over, but I pushed through the pain, and I remember the tears of joy rolling down my cheek when I powered through Day 7 of Week 4 like I was in the DVD. It was the most amazing feeling to complete.
In mid-January, I joined Stroller Strides of Irvine and Tustin, an hour-long stroller fitness program for moms. (see my blog post). This class literally changed my life. The support offered by the other moms gave me inspiration and motivation to continue working my butt off and I love that the class is offered 5 days a week. Since the girls come with me in the stroller, an excuse was not an option.
I have been doing Stroller Strides in the morning and when the girls go down for a nap, I have cycled in additional Jillian Michaels DVD’s, sometimes doing two a day. I finally turned on the treadmill and started using it for more then just a place to throw laundry. I optimize my time and when the girls go down for a nap, I workout.
Working out gives me the energy I was missing. It’s not just about being healthy, it’s about being happy, and right now, I have never felt better.
A couple of weeks ago, I found a Groupon for 10 Kickboxing classes at the 1-2 Punch Family Martial Arts & Fitness Center. I went to my first class last week, put on my boxing gloves, and began the most intense 60 minute workout I have ever experienced. it was amazing! Three months ago, I would’ve been face down on the floor, but now, it is the most exhilarating, fun workout, I have ever tried. I am hooked!
I have six months left until I turn the big 3-0, and in the past 3 months, I have lost 20 pounds and 2-3 dress sizes. Today, I bought a bikini. The bikini that the plastic surgeon said I would never be in again.
Although, I don’t have the “perfect” stomach, and still have some extra skin or beauty stretch marks, I am in better shape now than I ever was before.
It’s been an amazing journey, and a journey that I never want to end. Fit for 30 is just the beginning, it’s time to be fit for life.
Being a new mom, especially of twins, can be a very isolating experience. It’s hard getting out of the house with two active toddlers and going to the park is very overwhelming when the girls are running in opposite directions. I found that we were staying home more and more, just because it was easier.
Last month, I joined Stroller Strides of Irvine and Tustin, and it has been a complete life changer for me!
Stroller Strides is the country’s largest stroller fitness program for moms, offering pre- and post-natal fitness classes, and the best part is, you take your baby or toddler to class with you!
Stroller Strides is an hour long fitness class that combines intervals of power walking (or jogging), and body toning exercises using an exercise tube, the environment and your stroller. The class is taught by certified instructors and the workouts are great!
It is a complete win-win for me because I am getting out of the house, doing something good for myself by exercising, and after class, the girls have their time to play at the park with the other kids. It is the perfect way to start my day.
Aside from the workout, a big part of the class is the support that is offered by the other moms! Every month, Stroller Strides of Irvine and Tustin offers a Mom’s Night Out, additional play dates, occasional crafts after class, holiday parties, and healthy snacks!
Here is what one mom is saying about Stroller Strides:
”Stroller strides has introduced my daughters and I to some of the most amazing people I know. It’s such a unique experience as a mom to be able to get to workout, socialize, have your kids make friends, learn from other moms and be a part of a wonderful community. I couldn’t imagine motherhood without Stroller Strides!” ~Tamar
Stroller Strides of Irvine and Tustin is offered Monday – Friday from 9:30 a.m. – 10:30 a.m at two local parks near Tustin Marketplace. The first class is FREE! For more information, email Lynsey at email@example.com! You can also find them on Facebook.
I also wanted to let you know about one more class that is offered by Lynsey, Body Back!
Body Back is the newest program release from Stroller Strides!
Whether you had your baby six weeks ago or twenty years ago, Body Back is a results-based workout, designed specifically for moms and this class is also a mom’s getaway, because you leave your babies at home.
The workouts have been clinically proven in a University research study to help moms lose weight and get their pre-baby body back. Moms all over the country are achieving results that they never dreamed possible.
The program includes:
- 2 Workouts per week in a small group format
- Mama Wants Her Body Back Meal Plan and Food Diary
- Before and After fitness assessments and measurements
- Online coaching and support
- Mama Wants Her Body Back workout DVD
Here is what one mom is saying about Body Back:
“With my eldest son being six years old, and despite my personal efforts to exercise and stay healthy, I resigned myself to accepting my “post baby body.” Then I heard about Body Back from a friend and I thought I’d give it a try. After one session, I had not only gotten my pre-wedding body back, but I now have a clear and realistic outlook on purposeful fitness and healthy eating. Now three sessions in, I keep coming back for the fitness, support, and fun!” ~Jodie
For more information on Stroller Strides or Body Back, you can contact Lynsey directly! If you do sign up and mention that you heard about Stroller Strides on OC Family, you will receive $20 off registration!
Stroller Strides of Tustin & Irvine
I was fortunate to go to the consignor/volunteer pre-sale tonight at the Up Up and Away Kids Consignment Sale, and found some more great bargains!
All together, I saved about 74% off Retail! Not a bad night!!
There are literally 1000′s of items and great bargains available! Make sure you hit the sale when it opens to the public on Wednesday!
At least for me, after having a baby (or in my case babies), losing the baby weight is always in the back of your mind. Finding the right workout, support, energy, or even the time can be very stressful. When you do find the time, it raises the question, who will watch my baby when I am working out?
A new class called Sling and Dance, a unique workout for new moms. Your baby actually becomes your workout partner, so you not only get to bond with your baby, but also find the time to get a great workout during the day!
After watching the news, I knew I had to try this class out for myself.
Sling and Dance is very new and currently there is only one location in Orange County. With increasing demand, they are expecting to expand! The class I attended was at Granola Babies in Costa Mesa and currently is offered every Thursday at 10:00 a.m. Check Granola Babies for their complete class schedule.
Here is a little preview of a Sling and Dance class:
I have to say, Sling and Dance was awesome and my baby and I had an absolute blast! It not only felt wonderful to finally workout but I felt so good about myself after the class.
Yes, you will get a good burn! Doing squats and boogying down, with an extra 17 pounds on you, will definitely do the trick! My baby loved it!
Babies love movement and it appears to be very soothing to them. All of the babies in my class enjoyed the dancing and not a single one fussed.
I am definitely looking forward to this class again. A great workout, bonding with your baby, meeting new moms, and getting out of the house…all in all, this class was a huge hit in my book!
Although this class may not be twin friendly, since it would be very hard to dance with two babies, let the baby who is not in the sling watch the class and switch the babies half way through. There is so much going on, that even the baby who is watching, will still have a good time!
All you need to join the class are your baby and your sling or carrier. Get ready to dance, laugh and bond… I know I sure did!
People always tell you to cherish every moment with your children because they will grow up in the blink of an eye.
When the girls were first born, I could not wait for them to reach the milestones, like smiling, rolling, and even walking. When I look at how far my girls have come in the past six and a half months, tears of joy come to my eyes because they are growing so much every day.
When I was little, my parents had my first baby shoe bronzed to preserve a memory. I wanted to find a special way to capture my little girls. My husband and I started talking about the possibility of making hand and footprint impressions and began to do a little research online.
After doing a little more research, I was stoked, and called Elsie Holdridge, owner and ceramist of Precious Hand / Footprints, to book an appointment on November 5th!
Elsie was absolutely awesome! A true pleasure to work with and she worked so fast with the babies. We are so incredibly happy that we went to Precious Hand / Footprints!
We told her that we wanted three plates, one for us and two were Christmas presents. We were concerned that they may not be done before we left for our Christmas trip. Elsie made a special note on our order form and when they were ready on December 2, she not only called me, but sent me a picture text of one of the plates! Talk about, going above and beyond for customer service!
Precious Hand / Footprints has been in Orange County since 1991, over 20 years now. They will work with you to make sure you get exactly what you are looking for!
We had the girls impressions taken when they were four months old, but you can get them done as soon as you leave the hospital!
Impressions are done by appointment only. Here is all the contact information you will need:
Precious Hand / Footprints
28362 Marguerite Pkwy., Suite #4
Mission Viejo, CA 92692
Your babies will not be small forever, but their impressions will last a lifetime!
It finally happened. The girls are on a schedule.
For the past couple of months, I have made plans to meet up with new moms (of singles and multiples) and the question is always asked, “What time do your babies eat and what time do your babies nap?” The question is always posed so we can figure out what time to meet up, preferably after a feeding.
I realized, I could not answer this question and felt like I was one of the only moms who really had no idea. Every day was different. Some days the girls were eating around the same time, but usually not. Naps were often at opposite times, feedings were sometimes 30-60 minutes apart and I was never getting a break.
After talking with several new moms, and three new moms of twins, I realized, I was making my life a lot more stressful and did not even realize it.
It was time to at least get one thing in order, feedings. Before Thursday evening, feedings were all over the place. Sometimes the girls would cry an hour after they just ate, only to eat one more ounce. It was chaotic and I was feeding babies around the clock and it was non-stop. I was always exhausted.
After four months, I saw the light and this Momma has a new plan, which surprisingly has been a fairly easy adjustment for the girls. It all started Thursday night with a 6 p.m. bath, 6:30 p.m. feeding, and 7:00 p.m. bedtime.
Normally, the girls wake up twice at night, but something must’ve been in the bath water Thursday night because they only woke up once!
Friday morning came. My husband left for work at 6a.m. and today was the true test to see if I could get my life on schedule. Miraculously, both girls woke up at 6:30 a.m. and so it began, the first feeding. My day went like this:
<6:00 p.m. BATH>
<7:00 p.m. BED>
One nighttime feeding (between 1 a.m.-4 a.m.)
Having both girls eat at the same time was outstanding. Coincidentally, it led into napping at the same time, which meant, Mommy got a break. We followed the schedule again today and it was a success!
I used to be extremely stressed out running errands because it seemed like someone was always hungry. I never knew what a good time was to meet a friend because one girl was eating and one was sleeping. I feel like I was missing out on a lot of things because I was worried about leaving the house.
Now, this schedule has helped me get my life back. It is so great knowing exactly what time the babies will eat and that I could plan my day around it. I was finally in charge again… okay, I am in charge for the first time! How could it take me four months to start this?
Special thank you to my new friend, Erin, mother of beautiful 5 month old twin girls, for showing me the light. I can finally say, “Yes, 10 a.m. sounds like a great time to meet up for coffee!”
Right now, my focus is on the feeding schedule, next we will work on consistent napping, and then we will focus on eliminating the night time feeding. Hello world… this Momma is back!
We know that our girls are going to grow up fast and we want to cherish every moment. It was so important to us to have some newborn photos taken. Finding a photographer that can work fast with newborns is very important.
Fellow OC Family Blogger, Lindsey Garrett, owner of Modchik Photography, graciously volunteered to photograph our girls. You can tell she really loves her job. Lindsey was absolutely amazing with the twins. They were both very content and alert at the same time – very impressive! I could not have asked for more!
We were so excited and thrilled to have her as our photographer and the pictures are absolutely beautiful!
Below are just a few of the photos from their 1 month photo shoot! To see all of the photos, you can view the album on Lindsey’s website!
Again, we want to extend a BIG Thank you to Lindsey! You were so wonderful with the girls and the pictures are beautiful!! We definitely look forward to working with you again!
After nine months of pregnancy and anticipation, the babies have finally arrived! When I was pregnant, and ready to pop, friends and family kept telling me the babies are a lot easier to take care of inside the womb, which is definitely true.
Caring for two newborns is an amazing, exhausting, 24/7 job. They are eating every 2-3 hours and when they are not on the same schedule, it is very hard to think about anything that is not baby-related.
Getting out of the house between feedings, napping, and changing diapers, can be a challenge and now that our family has left and our attention is 100% focused on babies, it is very easy to forget to take care of ourselves.
There are days where simply feeding ourselves can become a challenge. When friends and families ask if there is anything they can do to help, one of the best things they can offer is an easy meal for Mommy and Daddy.
Food Tidings is a website designed to help families who may need a little extra help when it comes to planning meals. It is often used for new moms.
MMM uses this website to offer a hospitality service called “Meals for Moms.” Members in the group sign up for different days of the week to bring a meal to a new Mom.
New moms (of multiples) know especially how hard it can be to find time to do anything un-baby related. I’ve already had a few girls come to the house with an easy meal that was ready to eat, pop in the oven, or fresh food from a local restaurant. Their kindness and generosity is so much appreciated!
You do not have to be part of MMM to use Food Tidings. It is easy to go in and set up a schedule. You or someone you know can create an account for your family. You provide the drop-off location, foods you like/dislike, and the dates that the meals would be needed. Your friends and families can login to the schedule, pick an available day to sign up and write in what meal they will bring to your family.
This website has been a blessing and we are so thankful that MMM set us up with an online schedule! I could see how this website would be wonderful for a new mom, someone getting out of the hospital, or for anyone who may just need a little extra help when it comes to meal time!
Yesterday, we attended another Kaiser prenatal education class, Breastfeeding with Success. I know that I want to breast feed, and with twins, I recognize it will be easy to get overwhelmed. Kaiser has an amazing support system, access to lactation consultants, and of course, my husband will be my #1 supporter at home.
The class addressed a lot of the myths and worries of breastfeeding which actually was a big sigh of relief. According to statistics, less than half of all babies born each year in the United States are exclusively breastfed, and most for less than 3 months.
For thousands of years, babies depended on their mother’s milk for survival. Only recently, in the United States, we have changed our ways and are now living in a bottle-feeding culture. There are several contributing factors, and one of the big ones is women returning to work. Cultural norms in the US have also caused us to look down on breastfeeding. We are the only country that has these views.
There are a lot of myths about breastfeeding that were addressed in this class.
- Many women do not produce enough milk
- A vast majority of women actually produce an overabundance of milk. The baby may not be getting enough milk if they are poorly latched. The more you breastfeed, the more milk you produce. Once you start supplementing 1, 2, 3 bottles per day, you will produce less milk. Studies have shown that only 1-2% of women are truly unable to produce adequate milk.
- There is not enough milk the first 3 or 4 days after birth
- The first few days of feeding, your body produces colostrum (newborn milk), which is a rich, thick, yellowish milk. Their stomachs are only the size of a marble when they are first born, and the small amount of colostrum that comes out is the perfect amount for your baby.
- Breastfeeding is Painful
- Although many women experience some nipple tenderness during the early days of breastfeeding, breastfeeding is not meant to be painful. It is usually a sign that the baby is not latching correctly.
- Modern Formulas are almost the same as Breastfeeding
- Formulas do provide nutrition, but Breastfeeding also provides antibodies to strengthen your baby’s immune system. Breastfeeding also provides good cholesterol and other types of fat in human milk that support the growth of nerve tissue and brain growth.
There are a lot of other myths that were addressed and those were just a few. In our culture, there are many reasons that women choose not to breastfeed and that is a very personal decision that is to be respected.
In our class yesterday, we learned a variety of breastfeeding holds, including some that were specific to twins. We learned a lot from this 2.5 hour class, but we are also meeting 1-on-1 with a lactation consultant on Thursday to go more in detail on nursing for twins. Our lactation consultant will meet us again in the hospital and her office will be open to us after the babies are born for additional support. I think the support will really help us when times get tough.
I have obviously not been down the breastfeeding path yet, but I do believe that breastfeeding will be the best choice for our girls. Although life does not always follow your desired path, this is the path my husband and I have chosen to navigate.
A few weeks ago, I signed my husband, up for Daddy Boot Camp, a boot camp designed for new dads. His class was last weekend and I would say it was definitely a success, because he came home all smiles with great stories!
Daddy Boot Camp is a crash course that provides dads-to-be (aka “Rookies”) a comprehensive orientation on fatherhood from the real experts (aka “Veterans”) – men already doing the job as new fathers.
The three-hour class is offered internationally, but the founder, Greg Bishop, is right here in Orange County and he was the head coach of my husband’s class. At each class, 2-5 Veterans show up with their babies before the Rookies roll into class. This is a man-only zone… well to clarify, no females over 2 feet tall are allowed.
When the class was only in session for five minutes, Bishop asks,“Which one of you guys is having twins?”
My husband raises his hand and before he knew it, he was holding 2 babies in his arms.
As in most classes, when the Rookies say that they have never held a baby before, the Veterans were quick to hand them their child. The first part of the class entailed introductions where everyone shared one or two things they hoped to get out of the class.
Shortly after that, the class was divided into small groups with one Veteran assigned to each group. The Veterans talked about their experience as a new father, fielded questions, and passed their child around the small circle. If there was a need for a diaper change or bottle feed, the Rookies were welcome to help out.
The class reconvened as a large group and Bishop began going down the list of what everyone wanted to learn from the class. The Veterans helped lead the group discussion by providing more feedback and answering questions.
When I asked my husband what he thought of the class, he responded:
“I was hesitant to go when I was voluntarily signed up, but after the class was over, I realized, it was one of the better three hours that I spent getting ready for the unexpected.”
The class is only $25 and all dads receive a book, Crash Course For New Dads, along with a certificate, to prove to their wives that they did indeed attend the session.
For more information on Daddy Boot Camp, (or to sign your husbands up) you can visit their website at http://www.bootcampfornewdads.org.