Thursday, January 30, 2014

My not so "average" day { a photo an hour}

Yesterday was a crazy day! Soooo busy. You know why it was so busy? Because I decided that I wanted to be a part of this link up where I take photos every hour throughout the day, and I didn't want to bore you all with pictures of me working at my computer all day long. So I planned yesterday to be a "day of fun" and it was fun.... just busy.
So here is what went down....
First of all Wednesday is the only day of the week, along with an occasional Saturday that I get to sleep in because my neighbor drives the kiddos to school that day. (So I get up to send him next door at 7:00am and then go back to sleep) Now don't get me wrong, to many people 7:00 am IS sleeping in. Not for me people, this mama likes her sleeeeep!
Long story short, even though its a little late for that yesterday I got to sleep in! So my day started at about 9:30.
Breakfast of champs (and of people who don't follow serving sizes... I could live off of this meal all day everyday I swear!) Special K Red Berries YUMMM and of course coffee!

Next it was getting ready time, shower blow-dry, make up etc.

Still on schedule the baby ate her lunch.... and of course took the turkey out of this wrap first thing. Ugh. Why is she the pickiest eater?!
Now here is where taking pictures took over my brain because I decided we should SKIP the normal nap time. Say whaaaaaat?! Instead we took a drive into town and went to the children's museum. So..Much... Fun!

This is the first time she had ever painted, super cute right!

Next mommy and daddy needed lunch so we stopped for some Pho. I got the tofu and veggie pho. Seeing this makes me want to go eat the left overs right this second!!

My son gets home at 2:30. Cute bus huh. He goes to a small charter school so there aren't many kids that ride busses home. Only a few kids on this bus. 

The baby went down for a late nap and  I spent a good part of the afternoon washing drying and ironing all the clothes that don't fit her anymore so that I could sell, donate, or consign them.

When she woke up we hit the store to pick up dinner and a movie Yay for pizza night. I know this is like the worst pizza to choose but oh man was it gooood.

See, good!!

We started the movie and watched it during dinner...Oh the things we do because its a school night for the boy but the weekend for the husband!

Bathtime for the baby... an hour later than normal! Then she went to bed.

I had a second cup of coffee..don't judge me... while I read to my son. He is doing a reading challenge so each week he has to read 100 mins and I have to read to him for 100 minutes. This week however we are playing catch up and doing 200 mins each. Its a LOT.


FINALLY, after the kids were both asleep It was relaxing time for us, to watch some Walking Dead on Netflix. Yep, the floor is still a mess and I don't care!

Which leads me the end of the night.... when I finished editing these pictures and preparing this blog post.
Every day is not this exciting.... but we had fun and. Hope you enjoyed a peak into my life!! Don't you want to join in on the fun?


Thursday, January 23, 2014

Life with a CRAZY person

Ya know, sometimes life just sucks, but what is worse is when there is no valid reason that I should be feeling this way. I mean on one hand sure... I am BIPOLAR, so is that not a valid reason?! What I mean, I suppose is that there are days like yesterday where everything seemed like a chore. I know we all have those days because, hello, women in general are over-scheduled and under planned. I just feel like yesterday I was a hot dramatic mess. I'm pretty sure when my husband asked me to print out some info for our taxes that he had no idea he was starting World War 3. It is so silly that I have days where something that literally is one click away on my computer screen seems way too distracting, and heaven forbid I take any time away from entering giveaways. It is an addiction people, I know! LOL.
Along with this stupid bipolar craziness I am pretty sure I am also PMS'ing this week, which is not the Erin anyone wants to hang out with. I did manage to go out for lunch with a friend of mine. It was refreshing, and I was proud that I didn't cancel. Usually when I have days like this I flake out on everything and everyone.{I was super ticked however, when I got back to my car after lunch only to find the two douches parked on either side were so close I had to crawl in through my back liftgate... oh no you di'nt!!"} I did back out of a business conference/meet up because I just didn't feel like seeing hundreds of happy people. I wanted to eat pizza and watch a movie with my family. Not productive as an entrepreneur, yet necessary as a human!!
On top of random episodes of tears and snapping at everyone who crossed my path today (sorry hubby and kids) I didn't workout and obviously as stated above... ate pizza for dinner. I feel like I am on a downward spiral heading straight toward never working out again. Someone stop me because I have to get into a swimsuit and feel comfortable this summer. No excuses!
I also looked at my blog and almost screamed. Why is it so difficult sometimes. Why have I somehow turned my venting space into a place that I use only on a scheduled time frame. That's just not me. Sure, I like link ups, and giveaways,  and planned posts, but my main reason for having a blog in the first place is to be able to vent. To just spew my thoughts across a page so that other people won't feel so alone in the challenges that they face. I want to connect with people that were teen moms, abuse victims,  facing challenges in their marriages, people struggling to parent "the right way" single moms. I want to share my life of surviving on an extremely tight budget, gaining a healthy relationship with food and exercise, and being bipolar.  
Most of all I want everyone to know that we are ALL these people in some aspect. We all have struggles, and issues and things we chose to hide because we are afraid of what people will think of us, or how they might judge us. So here is to reading more blog posts where people are real, I say it starts here.
Hi, my name is Erin, and I am bipolar, but I am just as "normal" as the rest of this crazy world.

Saturday, January 18, 2014


I'm still alive.... sorry been a bit since I have blogged. I tired to vlog yesterday and did like 186882 takes before deciding I just suck at talking to myself in a camera. Maybe if I couldn't see myself it wouldn't be so bad, but here we are another failed vlog like a boss link up this Friday. Boo.
If I had successfully blogged here is what I would have told you:
- I have been working out every single day for the last 2 weeks!! That is good for me because I usually don't make it past day 3 haha.

**why are selfies on an iPhone so blurry? annoying !!**

- My company is launching so many amazing new products, loyalty perks and additional bonuses. I am SOOOO excited! I will be blogging about this soon, as well as a possible giveaway!

- I am also doing so well with my eating plan! I may or may not have eaten some breadsticks with garlic sauce tonight BUT that is the worst I have had in two weeks AND I still didn't go over my calorie count. BOOM!

 And lastly,

- We officially need to get a new computer or laptop. Microsoft Surface RT tablet DOES NOT= computer. Not even close.

The rest of my vlog would have been blabbing to fill time. So maybe I will be back next Friday on video..... maybe.

Take care loves!


Tuesday, January 14, 2014

Taste of Tuesday {Healthy Banana and Oatmeal Cookies}

Happy Tuesday friends!! It is Friday in our house aka the day before hubby is off for his "weekend" yay!
So if y'all have been following along, I am trying to lose some weight. Yep, just like the rest of the world is right now. I jumped on that bandwagon faster than you could yell chocolate covered potato chips. Good thing nobody did actually yell that cause I would have jumped right back off! Honestly I have yet to try those by the way, but they sound perfect.
Focus Erin
Anywho, I have been writing down everything I eat, counting calories, and tracking on my fitness pal app with the best of em. I'm working out almost everyday too. Yay me.... now to just keep this momentum going so that I can be one of those gym rats who sticks around longer than February 1st. With a sugar addiction as cray as mine I HAVE to find substitutes for foods I have decided I cannot live without. Dessert is one of those things. I tend to fall off the healthy eating spree when my brain is screaming at me.... SUGAR.... NOW. Then I will "bake cookies for my family" so that I can just taste the batter, and maybe lick the spoon, the bowl, my fingers.... and then it happens. COOOOKKIIEES. There goes one, two.... sometimes more. So the first day I started this new lifestyle I very quickly found a cookie that would not break the scale. You guys, even my husband loves them. WINNING!
k, yeah sorry for that.
You've got to give these a try. They could actually be eaten for breakfast, but for that I would leave out the dark chocolate chips. That's a lie. I wouldn't, but you could.



- 3 Mashed Bananas (extra ripe works best)
- 1/3 cup apple sauce
- 2 cups oats
- 1/4 cup Almond Milk
- 1/2 cup Raisins (optional)
- 1/4 cup Dark Chocolate Chips (optional)
- 1 tsp. Vanilla
- 1 tsp. Cinnamon

*** mix, drop in spoonful's onto cookie sheet, and bake at 350 for 15-20 minutes.***

Yep, it's that easy (and delicious) lovelies. 


Monday, January 13, 2014

If you REALLY knew me {part 1}

We all have a story. Some are happier than others, and some will never be shared. When I started this blog I always imagined having a place that I could come and be 100% open. Along with telling the internet world your deepest darkest secrets comes judgment. That can be scary. Most people would rather leave the past in the past and never revisit. I believe that through open communication and dialog about the truths in life more people will feel "set free" from the tortures of those moments. I think that we all experience hardships and we all have our own issues, not talking about it just continues to isolate others into thinking they are alone.  
The truth is we are NOT alone.
We talked in church yesterday about high school students doing a challenge called "If you really knew me...." where secrets were shared, and the playing fields were leveled. It can be a truly freeing experience to really share your truths, so here are a few of mine.

If you REALLY knew me you would know that....
My dad passed away when I was just 13 and it completely changed who I am as a person. I became depressed, and life as I thought I knew it was ruined. From this I never truly recovered. Every big moment, happy or sad since then, I have wondered how it would be different had he still been here. I wondered if he would have protected me in times I needed a hero. If he would have sheltered me when I felt lost and alone. If he would have been able to make me feel the true love I longed for in a man and searched for after he was gone. His passing altered my future.
If you really knew me you would know that....
I was abused by my boyfriend from the ages of 18-21. He started abusing me 3 months into the relationship and before I could get out I found out I was pregnant. I was abused during my pregnancy. I never left and I never told because I was afraid of being alone. I was afraid to be a teen mom with no money and no future. I thought I was in love and of course thought he would change. I lived in HIS world for 4 long, brutal years. He continued to abuse me until the day he came home, looked me in the eyes and told me he was in love with someone else. The pain was a blessing in disguise.
If you really knew me you would know that...
I was diagnosed bipolar when I was 22. Depression, anxiety, post traumatic stress, insomnia, panic attacks..... the works. I sometimes feel like a huge faker because nobody can see the torture that goes on in the brain of someone who is bipolar. The stigma can be humiliating, and too many people are afraid to talk for the fear of being called crazy. Bipolar disorder is judged. Bipolar disorder is misunderstood. Bipolar disorder is hard. Bipolar disorder is a reality for many people, and you probably just have no idea.
If you really knew me you would know that....
I am normal. Many children lose their parents at a young age, 1 in 4 women have experienced domestic violence in their lifetime, and mental illness affects millions of people. So why are we silent. Why are we afraid. I bet we have more in common with each other than you even realize.
What would I know if I really knew YOU?  

Thursday, January 9, 2014

Will you be my Valentine?

I've just gotta say it..... I have a blog crush. Maybe it's more like a blog obsession, for Jessica at Little Baby Garvin. Of course she has no idea ( and now I am like the crazy person who is blogging about her in my spare time.) I look forward to reading several blogs everyday but hers is one that I know will never disappoint. Her daughter is adorable, her house is beautiful and perfectly decorated, she has amazing parties, draws beautiful chalkboard signs, and it literally looks like Pinterest threw up on everything she does.
Which is my dream people!!
I always pin things on Pinterest knowing full well I will be too lazy to actually follow through. Even holidays just aren't the same. Take Valentine's day for instance, since this is what I am currently "stress pinning" as I call it. I used to be ok buying a box of $1.99 valentines from good ol Wally World for my son to give his friends. Not anymore. Not when Pinterest moms are taking over the world. Buying their kid some new digs at H&M, and having an impromptu photo shoot with the kid covered in lipstick kisses holding a super cute chalkboard sign. Print those bad boys out and how's that for a personalized Valentine. Take that cupid, and take note mediocre moms like myself.

It gives me anxiety.... Pinterest  anxiety.
All I can think about is how I need to make my kids heart shaped pancakes, that they will enjoy with strawberry milk for breakfast. They will eat it at a table with marshmallow heart centerpieces and drink using pink paper straws. Of course there will be sweetheart candies, handmade by me... duh. For dinner I will slave away to make sure our dinning room imitates a fancy restaurant so the Filet Mignon and garlic mashed potatoes can be served in perfection. A rose on each plate and candles will be lit. Bath time obviously involves bubbles and pink and red bath crayons.....
Ok, this has gone to far.
All I can say is keep an eye out for an upcoming post right around Feb. 14th labeled "Pinterest FAILS" because we all know I've got nothing on these amazing over achievers.

{via google images}


Tuesday, January 7, 2014

Taste of Tuesday: Crockpot Chicken Chili

The family thought we were having pizza for dinner but mama had another idea.
 I saw this recipe a friend posted on Facebook and lately I have been craving anything taco, chili, etc. Just love the flavors! So I clicked on the link and looked over the  Skinny Taste recipe. I have to admit, I am really bad about following recipes. Usually I don't have all the ingredients so I have to wing it, but honestly they always turn out amazing so maybe I am not such a bad cook :) Not to mention I also take the slacker approach.... like using cans of pre-seasoned chili beans in this case because the laziness of a crackpot just wasn't enough this time.

Crockpot Chicken Chili


  • 1 onion, chopped
  • 1 16-oz can black beans
  • 1 16-oz can kidney beans (in this case I used chili beans that were in a chili sauce)
  • 10 oz package frozen corn kernels
  • 1 tomato diced
  • 1 packet taco seasoning
  • 1 tbsp cumin
  • 1 tbsp chili powder
  • 2 boneless skinless chicken breasts
  • Sour cream or plain Greek yogurt 
  • Avocado
  • Cheese
  • Cilantro
  • Hot sauce (says the hubby)
Put all ingredients into a crockpot and place the 2 chicken breasts on top. Cover and cook on low for 10hrs or on high for 5-6hrs. Take chicken out and shred with forks then mix back into chili. Top with sour cream, cheese, avocado etc.
 { linking up with Ashley and Jessica for Taste of Tuesday}


Sunday, January 5, 2014

Hold up...WEIGHT a minute.

Ok ok ok ... I will try it. I will jump on the "admit you need to lose" bandwagon. I will share my before pictures. FINE.


I am scared mostly because my BUSINESS is health. People come to me to change their lives and here I can't get my own in order. Here's the thing, if you don't buy nutritional supplements from me you will buy them somewhere else. Everyone is in it for themselves. I have had personal success from these products but then I fall off just like everyone else and quit using them as much as I should. I write monthly newsletters, attend meetings, text and talk with people daily about their struggles and suggest how to change. Then after all that I am exhausted and I eat half a loaf of bread or pizza. It's like I don't take my own words to heart. It's funny because some of the most successful people in this company struggle with their own weight just like I do. **Ps, why did I say "It's funny" that is not funny at all.** obesity is a problem in the United States. Like a BIG problem. The only thing that is "good" (if you'd call it that) is that many of us can relate. Thank you fast food and overloaded calendars for helping to create a fat society.

I NEED to be held accountable. I NEED people to remind me that if I don't loose this weight I will most likely cancel my Hawaii trip this summer and forfeit fun that I deserve, just because I won't be comfortable in a bathing suit. I NEED to remember I dislike summer because.... tank tops and less clothes. That is silly. I should enjoy life, not be miserable just because of my addiction to unhealthy food.

One of my biggest issues actually ISN'T that I could make pizza an everyday thing, or that cookie dough makes me happy. It is actually that I get so busy.... or lazy.... that I live on coffee all day long. It takes no thinking. Cup on machine, push button, add completely bad for me creamer annnnd drink. Repeat at least 3 times a day and you are living my reality. Not to mention my aversion to sweat and being tired which makes working out a total bummer.

Get over yourself Erin, because you deserve a FULL life!

Anyone on this long road with me?!

There are a group of bloggers that are too.... so I m linking up to be a part of "Operation get Fit" with Sarah and promising myself to do better! You should join in too... come on you know you wanna!

Venus Trapped in Mars

ugh I was going to try to "forget" to post the before pics. That would be step one to starting down the path to failuresville, so here goes regretting showing everyone what goes on under these clothes nothing.


Keep in mind I am 3 pounds less now so obviously that gut is practically gone ;) ha ha.
Starting weight: 163
This wouldn't be so bad if it was a baby bump pic with the label"3 months" instead of how I actually look when I'm not sucking in. Yup, I told you my secret. I can pass for normal under clothes because I suck it in sweetheart! So let's say goodbye to this food baby and hello to sweatin it up with the big dogs.

Saturday, January 4, 2014

The TRUTH about marriage

Today is my beautiful sister in law's wedding day. I am beyond happy for her to enter this next stage of her life with her soon to be husband. While my own husband is in Puerto Rico walking her down the isle ( see what I did there... isle.... island.... Puerto.... ok never mind) in place of their father who passed a few years ago I got to thinking. Marriage is beautiful. Marriage is a blessing. Marriage is a choice, and most of all it is meant to be forever. The one thing I did not realize prior to my own wedding vows was how true that "marriage is a choice" part truly was.
Before I married my husband I was filled with excitement and anticipation for our future. I was thrilled for my son to have a dad again and for us to add to our family. I just knew we were perfect together and that God had blessed me with my ideal match in this man. I knew there would be tough times but I also knew that we were strong in our faith and would work through it together. I was right with all of these things and I would not choose to spend my life with anyone else... umm except maybe Tyrese... ok totally kidding. There were a few things however, that I wish I had truly understood.
Forever is a long time. I don't mean this in an "oh man I have to wake up to YOU everyday?" sort of thing, but rather in a "your life now completely involves another person, until the end" kind of way. From this moment on choices are not only your own, they will affect another human. It takes strength and integrity to make decisions wisely for more than just yourself. So grow up first.
Nobody else, not even your husband, will complete you. This job is ONLY fulfilled by God. If you feel inadequate, your husband can't fix you. If you feel insecure, your husband can reassure you but he will not make this disappear. If you are weak, he can lift you up, but he alone cannot make you strong. So love yourself first.
Words can be much more damaging. I'm talking from YOUR mouth too. If you vow to not speak of divorce, by all means NEVER start that fight, never have that option, and just never say that word. It can be hard. Even if you never imagined someone could make you mad enough to threaten it, even someone as amazing as your husband. There will be times that you get so frustrated it feels that word could so easily pour out of your mouth. It might feel like threatening divorce will make them see you are hurt and change. Don't take that risk. So watch your tongue.
Love is a choice, everyday. Love takes work. At first it comes so easy, but at times when your husband is weak and you want to be weak too you may need to call upon a strength you never knew existed. Don't expect an outcome to go a certain way or an apology to come just when you need it. It may never come. Find inner strength, and take it to God. You cannot be inside the mind of your man.  So chose to love everyday.
Lastly, no marriage is perfect. Facebook will make it look like perfect marriage exists. People will always make marriage look easier than it is. Even watching your friends with their husbands may spark a belief that what they have is something your marriage is lacking, this is false. Believing a perfect marriage exists will forever burden your relationship with a bar set so high that it is impossible to reach. This can make your marriage feel like failure, it is not. So never compare your marriage!!
 Even knowing all of these things now, we are still ( and I believe we always will be) a work in progress. Enjoy this day my beautiful sister, and pray over your marriage daily.

Friday, January 3, 2014

Vloggin like a boss!!

Hey hey its FRIIIDAAAAY. Not like it changes anything for me ... but for those of you with mon-friday gigs I bet you're happy! Check it our my friends, I VLOGGED again! this time like a boss ;) I am linking up with Ashten for her vlog like a boss Fridays.
First things first, in the new year I am trying to be more "real" with myself. I usually take no less than 45mins to record a 5-10minute blog, but not today folks. Today I only did 3 takes and here is what bothered me: my eyebrows look different sizes and like I draw them in with a pencil, due to the sun coming in the window and washing out the side of my face. My makeup looks cakey and yet I'm not even wearing foundation, not to mention dry lip city! As always I think my face, teeth and talking are weird BUT it's authentically me.
It felt so good to vlog again.... next week though I hope to have more to tell you about. I don't do notes so my mind always draws a blank. So enjoy the vid in all it's rawness.
Oh and on the "real" note.... check out my before and after hair and makeup this morning. I swear I am two different people, I have never seen anyone else look SO different.
So join the fun!! See you next week!
Always Ashten

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