Through their eyes

We had a wonderfully chaotic Sunday School lesson this morning. When you take one pregnant woman, her brother, his wife, her brother, the teacher, his sister, and three youth aged kids what can you expect other than happy chaos?

I really love our class and though sometimes we end up WAAAAY off track, there are some times where what we talk about really hits home.

Yesterday was one of those days. In verse 17 of Philippians 3, Paul tells us to follow his example and model our lives after him. (NOTE: He is NOT telling is to be him and that he is perfect, he is telling us that he is striving to be Christ-like and so should we.) He talks about counting all worldly achievements as “poop” and that what matters is doing the work of God and one day joining Him in Heaven.

Our Sunday School teacher posed a great question at the end of class. “If someone were to model their lives after you, what would the end result be? What are they seeing you do as their model and are you someone whom they should really be using as an example?”

This is a wonderful, challenging, humbling thing to thing about.  If someone was watching you all day what would they see?  Would they see the love of God or the bitterness of man?  Would they see prayers or curses?  Would they be a witness to miracles or would they cringe watching how you interact with people? If they did the things you did, would God smile down on them, or would the devil be jumping for joy?

For parents, think of your kids.  They watch you all day long, even when you don’t notice.  Are your cursing when you think no one else is looking.  Do you read your bible and pray where they can see and hear you? Do the shows you watch reflect your relationship with Christ?  Would you still do all these things with your child right next to you?

Today, take 15-20 minutes to reflect on this.  Think about who you are, what you do, how you interact with others.  Does this align with the love of God? If it doesn’t, how can you fix that? Take time to pray that God reveals areas of your life that He wants you to work on and improve.  Take His answers and humbly accept them, don’t scoff and ignore Him.  Change may be difficult and take time, but it can be done and God will be with you every step of the way.

If you have questions or comments, please leave them below.
I will continue to pray for all of you!

~LadyBugHutto

Back on track!

So, with all the hecticness around here lately, my “lifestyle of healthy” flew out the window.  I began to eat fast-food again, I was drinking coke instead of water, I stopped taking walks, and I was enjoying one too many cookies!  On top of all this I stopped breastfeeding.  This lead to a 6 lb weight gain.  YUCK!

The good thing is, I stopped before the train completely derailed!  This past Monday I got back on track and have already lost two pounds!!!

I found a fantastic new arm workout that KILLS my arms.  You can check it out here.  Her Pilates video is good too.

I have not started tracking calories again yet, but I have done the following: cut out all sodas, started drinking at least 3 water bottles, starting drinking green tea at least twice a day.

The green tea started out just as a way to relax me, but I realized it has many benifits and one of this is that it cuts my cravings!  I now have a cup between my small meals and one before bed.  This has helped me eliminate my nighttime snacking completely 🙂

 

If you are currently a little off track, please don’t get discouraged!  You can quickly turn it around and do even better than you did before!

Like always, feel free to leave a comment here with your progress, favorite workout, favorite way to avoid snacking, or a combo of all three!

 

I will be praying for you on your journey. I will also be starting a new bible-study based on the podcast series “Be Still, Be Free”  If you are interested in following it, check them out here, and leave me a comment 🙂

~LadyBug Hutto

Club feet and braces and trials, OH MY!

Hello again!  Man has it been hectic around here this past month!

As I mentioned before, my then two month old had a small surgery on her heels to help correct her club feet.  The next week was hard but not unbearable.  Three weeks later we got her last set of casts off and received her brace that we were told she would have to wear 23 hours a day until she was 7 months old.  That was a NIGHTMARE!

Because she had been in leg casts for over 90% of her life so far, we were told that her legs and feet would be very sensitive for a few days.  I think “very sensitive” was an understatement!  When we would accidentally rub her leg or bump her foot she would wail.  On top of that, we had to now put her feet into socks and shoes for her brace.  Because her feet are so small, the shoes have to be very tight and restrictive.  I knew I couldn’t put them on by myself, so as it was a Wednesday, I went ahead to church to have my mom help me out.  The cry she let out was a cry of pain that I have never before heard!

It took us almost ten minutes to get them on the first time, and as she is crying, the rest of us have watery eyes.  It was incredibly heartbreaking but I knew it had to be done for her sake.  We got them on and I nursed her to calm her down and everyone breathed a sigh of relief.  It was short lived, however.  Not ten minutes later on of her shoes came off and we had to do it all again.  This time tears were shed not just by her but by a couple family members as well.  I managed to hold it together for her sake because I know how babies feed on emotions around them.

I went to go nurse her and on the way out both feet came out of the shoes.  I lost it then.  I turned to one of the men at our church and showed him that they had fallen off and though I did my best to not let the dam break lose then and there, I know that he could see it was coming.  He sent in my sister-in-law and mother to help me and just to be there with me as she screamed.

At that point I thought, “Why do I have to do this to her?” Immediately I knew that it was for her own health and benefit and in the long run it really would help her, but I had no way to communicate this to my absolutely inconsolable tiny baby.  My heart was so broken for her.

After about 15 mins of shushing and nursing, she calmed down and passed out.  I walked next door hoping to be able to sit in on bible study for a few minutes.  As I walked in carefully cradling her, they were talking about how sad it was and how much it hurt to hear her cries for help.  My sister-in-law mentioned how she could now see why some parents don’t make the child wear the brace like they should.  This lead into a conversation about how even though we, the parents, know it hurts her, we also know that it will be better for her to go through this now than to be walking on her ankles later because we never went through this process.  My dad, the pastor, then made a wonderful point.  This is just like our relationship with God!

Often times we hear people say, why does God let bad things happen to good people.  Why must we feel so much pain?  I can tell you why.  He is refining us, healing us.  We have to wear the casts and the brace NOW so that we can be better LATER.  God has us go through tough times because as we go through those times, our faith is allowed to grow stronger and our spiritual health is restored.  When we cry out to Him in pain and suffering, it hurts Him and he does His best to comfort us and let us know why He is doing this, but like a baby, we don’t understand at the time.  As we grow and mature as Christians, we look back and can see why we had to wear “braces.”  We come to situations where we are able to help others and use our past experience to do so.  We look back and realize that we are closer to God than ever because of our trials.

Though I hate what my baby girl has to go through, I am glad that God was able to use it to open my eyes and the eyes of people in our church.  Maybe your eyes will be opened as well.

I will pray for all of you and remember to count your blessings!

~LadyBug Hutto

 

Weekly Weigh-In Number 3!

Good Afternoon ya’ll! How have ya’ll been this week?

So it’s time once again to share how we’ve done this past week with our weight loss. Drum roll please……….I am still the same darn tootin weight. There are several reasons for this.

One, my LoveBug was gone this past week so I had the girls by myself and my oldest had the croup, so I did not eat nearly enough calories. In fact I averaged at 1700 a day. On top of that, my littlest had a minor surgery this week, so I have spent the past three days literally walking miles and bouncing her to keep her from screaming and trying to get all the gas out of her system.  Doing so, I burned many more calories than usual and since I wasn’t eating enough, my body decided to actually store up a bit.

Two, I have been jogging every other day and doing a LOT of walking, so my thigh muscles are strengthening and growing, adding muscle weight.

I am a wee bit discouraged, but not too much because for the first time this past Thursday, I looked into the mirror and LIKED what I saw.  That is a huge step for me and keeps me encouraged as I travel down this fitness road.  I can’t wait to do measurements next week and see how those have changed!

Please, if you would like to join in on the fitness journey, leave a comment with your stats for the week or even just to say hello.  All are welcome and will be uplifted and encouraged!

 

Have a WONDERFUL week and be sure to look out for the next recipe post!  Count your blessings throughout the week and check in to keep me accountable in counting and posting some of mine!

~LadyBug Hutto

Count Your Blessings

“Count your blessings name them one by one,
Count your blessings see what God hath done”

I was thinking over the weekend about the topic of the next post. I was wavering in between two or three topics, but on Sunday morning God chose for me.  Sunday morning, one of our hymns was “Count Your Blessings.”  As I was singing, I knew exactly was God was trying to tell me personally.  There is so much I worry about and here lately I’ve really focused on the negative side of things.  God was re-affirming that I need to count my blessings so that I can see just how much He is taking care of me and my family.

For instance, our car has been in the shop for three weeks.  The air compressor had to be replaced and while they had it, it seemed they found more and more that needed fixing.  Our bill increased until I wasn’t sure how we were going to be able to pay to get it out of the shop.  On that very day, I wrote the post about re-connecting with God and quoted Philippians 4:6-7.  I gave the car situation completely up to Him.  That night a family member, following God, gave us some money that she felt lead to give us.  God PROVIDES!

I’ve been counting my blessings throughout the day since Sunday morning.  My husband is away on a work trip this week and my oldest, RedBug, got sick Sunday night right before he left.  Instead of focusing on him being gone and her being sick, I’ve praised God that LoveBug has a job to train for.  I’ve praised Him for a mom and mother-in-law that are both available and willing to help when needed.  When my youngest, DoodleBug, is up screaming at night with gas pains and the only thing that calms her is me bouncing on my toes and rocking back and forth, I praise God for giving us a second child after our earlier miscarriage and thank Him for the toned calves I am going to have because of all the bouncing and rocking.

For every trial and tribulation there is a blessing to be counted.  I encourage you to start writing them down as you notice them.  Once a week, I will post a list of my blessings on here to keep me accountable and to remind me to praise Him in every aspect of my life.  Feel free to do the same in the comments.  You can also leave prayer requests and I will pray for you.

I pray ya’ll have great days today! Don’t forget to count your blessings!

~LadyBug Hutto

 

Looking for a christmas gift for the woman or girl in your life? Check out LadyBugHutto’s Watches!

 

Weekly Weigh-In #2

Good Morning Sunshines!

I am SUPER excited today?  Why, you ask? Because it’s time for the weekly weigh-ins!  Remember, if you want to follow along and support each other, you are welcome to leave a comment down at the bottom of the page 🙂

So, I started this week at 189.6 pounds.  The exact same weight as the week before.  As I posted last week, I have been making sure to get around 2200 calories to make sure my body is well nourished and my baby is being properly fed while I breastfeed since I realized I wasn’t eating enough last week.  I noticed that I had much more energy this week, and I wasn’t ravenously hungry after my workouts anymore.

Now, my weight loss for this week isn’t drastic, with me coming in at 188.6 lbs.  However, around a pound is better than no weight loss at all, and it’s forward progress.  What I am very excited about today is my measurements!!  (I measure every two weeks.)  This week they are:

Neck-    12.5 in       (same)
Arms-    14.25 in    (- 1/4 in)
Chest-    39.25 in    (- 1/4 in)
Waist-   31.5 in       (- 1/2 in)
Belly-     37.5 in       (-1 1/2 in)
Hips-      43 in          (- 1 in)
Butt-       47 in          (- 1/2 in)
Thighs- 29 in           (-1 in)
Knees-  15.25 in     (- 1/4 in)

How can I be discouraged with numbers like that?  It can be very frustrating to not see results on the scale, but taking measurements and seeing the numbers drop keep me excited on my journey.  If you don’t already, I highly recommend using measurements to more accurately track body changes on your  journey.  If you need a good tape measure to use, I recommend this tape measure.

Please join me in tracking my journey weekly.  Just comment below with your story and numbers.  I would love to get a support group going!

 

Have a great day and may God bless you on your journey,

~LadyBug Hutto
Again, here is the scale I recommend. It’s a great price considering it does so much!

Thirsty Thursday!

Good Morning everybody! This is a beautiful morning! God saw fit to wake us all up this morning, I got sleep last night, and I have energy now. I want to share with you my favorite smoothie recipe. It is a modge podge of a few different recipes I’ve seen the past few years and it makes a great breakfast or after-workout snack (you adjust portions accordingly.)

To start with, you get out your food processor. (I’ve found it works WAYYYY better at making a smooth smoothie than our blender did. You can see which one we have here.) Okay, now collect 6-8 ice cubes, 1 banana, 5 strawberries (fresh or frozen, use less ice if frozen though,) 1 tsp honey, 1/2 cup vanilla greek yogurt, 1/2 cup vanilla almond milk, 1/4 cup oatmeal, 1 oz almonds, and 1 tbsp ground flax seed (the almonds and flax seed are optional, I just love the taste and the bit of protein boost.) Now all you have to do is blend it all together! Personally, I blend the ice by itself first to make sure it’s all nice an uniform, without huge chunks of ice at the end. Toss in everything else, blend for a minute or two, and voila! A wonderful breakfast!

The total calorie count for the recipe above is 539 kcals, perfect for a very filling breakfast. When I want to make one for a snack, I use 1/2 a banana, 1/4 cup of both the yogurt and the milk, .25 ounce of the almonds, and 1/2 tbsp flax seed. This brings you to 329 kcals. If you want to lower it even more, take out the almonds and flax seed and that drops it down to 260 calories!

So go forth! Get the ingredients, blend them up, and ENJOY!

Share your favorite smoothie in the comments section below.

~LadyBug Hutto

 

 

Reestablishing a relationship with Christ after Marriage and Kids

Wow.  I was going through my facebook (all the way back to 2008) to get the facts about my knee injury for another post when something caught my eye.  Most of my posts were upbeat, and if they weren’t they stated that “at least it was Wednesday-church night” or “God will be with me and help me.”  Reading through I realized that I had something with God that I do not have anymore.  Why don’t I wake up and say “It’s Sunday, let us praise Jesus” but instead think “My husband isn’t out of bed, I got no sleep last night, the baby needs to be breastfeed, but the toddler needs to given a bath because she peed through her diaper again.  Gosh, I just wanna get to church so my mom can help me out.”  Wow.  Re-read the end of that sentence. “I just wanna get to church so my mom can help.”  How wrong is that?  That is not what church is about, not even remotely.

When I realized, as I was scrolling through facebook, that I had become this person I wanted to weep.  Where has this attitude gone?  When did I go from focusing my life on God completely to focusing my life on my marriage and my kids, without leaving enough time for God? What happened to the warrior for Christ?  What happened to the bible verses and the reading and the praising God through song all day?  I realized that I haven’t been given lyrics or poetry to write lately, and this is why.  My most blessed poems and lyrics came at a time where I was focused on Christ.  Completely and wholly His.  I am not that woman anymore and my heart breaks at this revelation.

It’s sad how blind we can be for so long.  My life is okay right now, but I worry about so many things.  Our car is having to be fixed, which will cost us three arms and two legs, we had to add a room to our house to accommodate our newest blessing from God, we are living paycheck to paycheck on my husbands income which we may not have much longer because his company is going WAY down.  No wonder my body aches from tension.  No wonder I have a short fuse with my husband  and kids some days.  Constantly worrying about how we are going to make it work is exhausting.  I don’t have to live this way though!

In Philippians 4:6-7 it says “Be anxious for nothing, but in everything by prayer and supplication, with thanksgiving, let your request be made known to God; and the peace of God, which surpasses all understanding, will guard your hearts and minds through Christ Jesus.”  I used to have that peace, but somewhere between marriage and children it disappeared.  I want it back.  I will strive to have it back now that God has opened my eyes to how much I need and miss it.  Even from the time of the revelation to the time of me typing this my peace has increased.  I feel rejuvenated once again by God.

I am just at the beginning of working with God to heal this relationship.  One blogger I suggest reading is Kim at Not Consumed.  She has an excellent blog focused on Christ and getting through the rough patches with family and kids.  Hop on over and check it out.

I pray that as God has opened my eyes to how I can heal and let go, you also can find peace through Him.

 

~LadyBug Hutto

Visit Ashley’s profile on Pinterest.

 

The recipe that SAVES me!

My biggest problem any time I have ever tried to lead a healthy lifestyle was giving up the sweets I love. Chocolate has been a part of my life since I was born and there has almost never been a family function without some form of it. (One time at a family reunion there was NO chocolate desserts and we didn’t know how to act. The next year, it seemed like EVERYONE brought a chocolate dessert of some form. Yeah, it’s that important!) Going without it is impossible for me and eating just a little is impossible for me because then I eat the entire box or bag or pot (Peanut Butter Fudge is just delectable when not quite hardened and straight from the pot!) So my quest was to find a cleaner, healthier recipe that would fulfill my sweet tooth without hindering my weight loss.

Well, I found the perfect recipe! I came across a pin on pinterest called “Clean eating Blender Banana Oat Muffins.” The picture showed scrumptious looking muffins with chocolate chips in them and claimed that there was no sugar, butter, or oil in the muffins and I couldn’t help but check it out. Looking at the ingredients I was skeptical, but I was determined to give them a chance since I had done the calculations and there were only 153 calories a muffin.

***NOTE: You will need a good food processor for this recipe.  The one we use is simple with just an on, off, and pulse button.  Check it out here.***

Try them I did, and, at first, love them I did not. I knew the muffins were not going to be your typical super sweet and fluffy muffins, but my palate was just not ready for the taste it received. These muffins are denser, have a different kind of sweetness, and a different texture. They taste like Banana Nut Bread. About 10 minutes after eating the first one and processing all the tastes and textures, I realized that I wanted another one. From that point on, I was hooked. I have one every day, and sometimes two or three, depending on workouts and travel time. (I bring them and trail mix on the road with me to keep from stopping and getting fast food anywhere.) Because I am able to reach for one of these when I have a sweet craving, and I have home mixed trail mix for my salty cravings, I have been able to refrain from any other super caloric treats for over 4 weeks now!

You can mix things up and swap the chocolate chips for fruit like strawberries and blueberries, or you can add in some nuts. (I personally wouldn’t change the amount of honey you use. I tried to scale it back a bit and wound up having to sprinkle a little sugar on that batch to make it good enough to eat.) Both LoveBug (my hubby) and RedBug (my 1 1/2 yr old) love these muffins, and I don’t feel bad at all about letting RedBug snack on one through the day. We usually make two-three batches a week and they are eaten long before they have the opportunity to go stale.

I hope that you and your family enjoy these as much as we do!   🙂

Leave a comment with your favorite healthier recipes.  I would love to try out some more.

~LadyBug Hutto

The Struggle is Real!

As a mom of a toddler and a 5 month old, sleep is a very precious thing.  When that precious sleep is continually interrupted by a gassy baby, you tend to search high and low for a solution.

My youngest girl, DoodleBug, has been plagued by bad gas pains since she was two weeks old.  (My oldest had colic for 7 months!) After the first week, LoveBug- my hubby- and I were determined that she and we could not suffer for 7 months again.  We tried every brand of gas drop and tablet we could find in our area.  We tried holding her with pressure on her stomach.  Since she is breastfeed, I completely cut out any food that was labeled as “gas producer .”    Nothing helped for more than a few minutes.

Last weekend, we were at a first birthday party for the daughter of a couple friends of ours.  Towards the end, DoodleBug got gas and started screaming.  (Luckily all other moms understood.) The host and I were talking about everything we had tried so far as we walked to her daughters room.  Once there, she took out what I believe is my favorite product ever right now.  It was called Happi Tummi. It is a band that velcros around your baby’s waist that has an herbal pouch insert that helps to sooth the pains of your baby’s gas. I was desperate and put it on her right away but couldn’t believe it actually helped!  We now use it multiple times a day.  You can only reheat the inserts 40 times, but for me it is well worth purchasing the refills.  (Which I have GOT to do when I finish typing this haha.)  I will say, when you get one and try it, make sure it isn’t on bare skin.

Please, if you have a gassy baby, at least give this a try.  It could very well save your sleep, sanity, and hearing.   🙂

Now, if only I could get her to pacify with a pacifier and not my boob!

-LadyBug Hutto

 

If there are any products you use to help your baby, please comment and let me know.