A Day in the Life

My life has changed dramatically the past few months… in more ways than one. The best change that my husband and I are thrilled about is that we are expecting in February! All of the immediate family knows now so I can share the news on the blog too (officially). 🙂

So with that news, a day in the life has changed for me. A lot! But, not in a bad way. I am enjoying every moment that I can (even when nausea strikes) because I feel blessed to be the vessel for baby Kennedy.

Before I get to mine, “A Day in the Life” is the Fit Dish topic for this week. Jill Conyers and the Fit Switch host this link up each Tuesday.

Back to it… a day in the life for Bri Kennedy. Most of my days are somewhat different, but a typical work day where I get to work from home looks like this…

  • I wake up STARVING. Before I got pregnant, I was able to do a workout first thing in the morning on an empty stomach and then eat breakfast. Not anymore! I have to eat breakfast within 30 minutes of waking up or I grumble loud enough for the neighbors to think the tornado sirens went off.
  • My taste buds have changed dramatically so where I used to choose a healthy, hearty bowl of oatmeal, sunbutter toast, or some type of egg dish I now choose cereal. Currently, “I gotta have my pops.”
  • I have not wanted any sort of hot beverage lately, tea or coffee included. But, today I made a cup of Cinnamon Apple Spice herbal tea. Delicious!tea
  • I sit down to start work after breakfast, usually around 7:45 or 8:00. I almost always have a cat to pet before I get to work though. Cali wouldn’t have it any other way! So she jumps in my lap, I give her some attention, and THEN I start my work.cali
  • Around 10, I get hungry again so make a snack. I joke that it’s my 2nd breakfast, but it is usually not breakfast food at all. Today it is 3 chicken taquitos, but most of the time it is yogurt and a piece of fruit. I was EXTRA hungry today though.
  • Around 12 or 1, I take a break from work and try to do a workout. I am 2 weeks into my 2nd trimester so luckily the energy levels are back up. In my first trimester, it was hard to get a workout in for at least a month. Now I find it enjoyable to do a Cize workout or to go for a walk and follow it up with strength training and stretching. I need want more yoga in my life again so should be incorporating more of that, but will get to that soon. I am just happy I am active again! Here is me after a Cize workout…cize
  • I shower, get ready a bit, and eat lunch before heading back to my office upstairs. I work until about 5pm, but since I work from home I am sometimes guilty of working later. I make sure to have a fun or relaxing evening though when I do that!
  • My husband gets home around 5 or 5:30pm so we like to chit chat for a bit and then I make us dinner (on days I actually cook) or we heat up something already made.
  • Evenings vary from listening to the husband play piano/guitar to watching some TV shows to cleaning to getting outdoors. We are soaking up the time we have to do whatever we want in the evenings since pretty soon we will have a little one dictating our time.

All in all, a day in my life is not over the top adventurous, but I dig it. I try to take time to enjoy the little things, whether on my walk or sitting down at home. There is always something to be grateful for!

What is one thing you fit into your life each day?

Gratitude for Change

cats

Having gratitude for change can often be tough. Life is full of changes all the time, some we are ready for and some we just aren’t. But gratitude often comes from the change at some point. Hell, it may be ten years down the road and not right away at times, while other times the gratitude comes right away.

I want to tell a little story about my gratitude for change in one area of my life…. MY LOVE FOR CATS.

Would you believe it if I told you I went through a period of neutrality towards cats? My current self is shaking its head hell no. I love cats. I take pictures of my cats all the times and probably post way too many pictures on Instagram of them. But, I really did. I went through a period where I didn’t want to be a cat person.

It has its deep roots so hear me out.

When I was a young girl, I loved cats. I started collecting cat statues whenever my Uncle Jim would buy them for me at random places. I had quite the collection and a cat statue was always on my Christmas list. I am sure that made my parents happy since they really aren’t that expensive! I could have had the next biggest toy on my list, but no I wanted a new cat statue. I even got a real cat for Christmas one year and I named her Crystal. She loved me and hated my brothers so we were quite the pair.

My Uncle Jim passed away in 1995. My family was devastated. It was a major life adjustment. Death is a hard thing to overcome and I am not fully convinced we ever overcome death. I think we just decide to focus more on memories and the love we had for the one who passed.

But I was young when he passed. I was 11. One way I grieved was to forget about my love for cats. I got rid of my cat collection.

The interesting thing is that I didn’t realize it at the time why I got rid of my cat collection. Only now do I realize that the cat collection was something beautiful between my uncle and me and that getting rid of it was my subconscious protecting my sweet, little heart.

We got a dog later in 1995 and named her Daisee May. She was a blessing to our family after such a hard tragedy. I’ve always loved dogs too (I think of myself as an animal person in general.. love them all!), but I focused more on dogs after we got Daisee.

In 2008 I met a man who has an intense and admirable love for cats. He is not ashamed to admit it! Society makes it seem like guys are typically dog people, but I find it so sexy when a man can admit he likes other animals too. And perhaps that is why God gave me this man.

Anyway, my renewed interest for cats started to grow as our relationship grew. In February 2009, this man’s parents had a cat that started coming around their house. It had kittens, but was a young one herself. She couldn’t produce enough milk for the kittens so a local vet out of Terrell bottle fed the kittens. There were 4. And they were so adorable!

When they were old enough to eat cat food, we would go visit the kittens and one day, I took one home. It has changed my life for the better in so many ways!

I don’t have gratitude for death per se. I still wish I had my Uncle here on Earth as selfish as that may be, but I can find gratitude in the way that cats remind me of him at times. I find gratitude in the connection we had when I was a kid and one of those ways being with the cat statues. I also have an intense gratitude for the change in my love for cats. This change has opened my heart in more ways than I ever thought possible. I consider my pets family and the love I have for these four-legged creatures has shown me that I will also have love for a two-legged lil’ squirt someday and be a damn good mom.

I am linking up for The Fit Dish with Jill Conyers and The Fit Switch. This week is all about gratitude!

I Am Enough

I Am Enough

 

I am really late to this Fit Dish from last Tuesday, but it is such an empowering topic that I still HAVE to jump in. Diving all in, folks. I love “self appreciation” posts. I think we need more LOVE in the world. Less hate. Including self hate. So, I am taking part in the I Am Enough project with Jill Conyers and The Fit Switch. Perhaps some of you already took part in it.

 

Let me first start with why this phrase resonates with me. I fought the good fight with self esteem issues in my past. I was a striver of perfection, always feeling like a let down to myself. I wore myself out trying to be someone that I wasn’t. I had to walk down my own journey to find out that… I am, indeed, enough. Just the way that I am.

 

I have learned a few things to be true about self esteem…

 

The first is that everyone struggles with it at times. And that’s okay. No one is immune to the negative devil that sits on the left shoulder taunting the angel on the right. We go through things that may bring up negative thoughts. It’s life!

 

The second is that whenever these negative thoughts come more often than not, we need to seek help. Not one single person on this planet is alone. Look around. I feel like singing Michael Jackson’s, “You Are Not Alone,” right now. But, I’ll spare you. Help is abundant. Some can seek help with a friend or family member. Others may need professional help. And that’s okay. For the small things I often seek a friend or family member, but for the bigger things I am all about speaking to a therapist. I have had some significant life breakthroughs while speaking to a therapist. (In fact, it is the very reason I gained the confidence to quit my Lease Analyst job at Shell to become a Registered Dietitian). Just sayin’!

 

 

The third is that only you can determine your self worth. Did you hear me? A magazine, beautiful model, rude jerk down the hall, or the next diet/fitness craze does NOT determine your self worth. I once worked for a doctor who thought he was God’s gift to women. He was a certified angus chach. He often joked around with the staff, but one day he took it too far. He patted my stomach and asked me if I was pregnant, as he laughed. No lie! I felt humiliated. I was furious. This was in front of three other co-workers as well. He said a few other rude and offensive jokes that day to two of the other co-workers so maybe he was just 100% in jerk mode that day, but it doesn’t give him an excuse. Later on, he continued with the joke and told my co-worker, “Oh now she is going to just drink water all day.” It was as if he knew what he said was a blow to my self esteem. I let him get to me. I let him determine my self worth for the rest of that day. I cried in the bathroom for a bit that night as I pinched my “not pregnant or overweight” belly. I even threw away the jeans I wore that day because in my mind they were part of the problem. They weren’t. I have since realized that people can be rude and say offensive things, but I don’t have to let them get to me. I can stand strong and know my inner and outer beauty. I can believe in that. I can believe that I am enough. If he were to tell me that today, I would probably shake my head and say something along the lines of, “Nope, not pregnant. But I hope to get pregnant someday and if I have a boy I will raise him to respect other people. Guess you didn’t learn that lesson.” And then when I went home that night I wouldn’t cry or throw away my jeans. I would just be thankful that I don’t live an unhappy life to where I have to put down others for my own personal pleasure. I determine my own self worth, thank you very much!

 

I guess I really love this type of post because it empowers each and every one of us to take charge of what goes on inside those beautiful brains of ours. The mind is a powerful tool and sometimes we just need that little reminder that we are enough.

 

And here is the full picture… I liked it because I turned away as the camera snapped and have a serious face. I mean business, people! This is vewy sewious!

 

IAmEnough

Current Favorite Health-Related Podcasts

Favorite Podcasts

I am linking up for The Fit Dish with Jill Conyers and The Fit Switch today. We are discussing podcasts. I am always looking for new podcasts to follow so am really looking forward to reading all of the posts today! I follow a few comedians and one reality star (guilty pleasure!), but I do have 3 current favorite health-related podcasts too so I will share those today.

I have talked about one podcast below on one of my wedding series posts, but I will name her again because I am still digging on it!

  1. Fearless Rebelle Radio with Summer Innanen. I love her caption so will share it directly… “Fearless Rebelle Radio is here to empower you to defy the standards and break the rules in order to radiate confidence, relish in your uniqueness, and live life fearlessly on your own terms.” Who can’t dig that?!?!
  2. Mind Body Musings Podcast. Maddy Moon is a podcast host I heard through Fearless Rebelle Radio. She was a fitness competitor and realized that the starvation diets and strict exercising left her unhappy and wanting more out of life. She now strongly advocates trusting yourself, loving yourself, and saying no to the crazy diet and exercise rules. This is probably my favorite podcast of the moment because I love all of her topics lately!
  3. The Model Health Show. This one is with Shawn Stevenson and I can’t believe I had never heard about him before. I found out about him when he was a guest on Fearless Rebelle Radio too. I love his voice! And since podcasts are all voice that is an important characteristic. He does say some out there stuff that I would probably never try, but most of his stuff is interesting.

Side note: if you haven’t heard of Dear Sugar Radio, check it out too. I love the questions that come in… it is almost like a Dear Abby column. I always loved reading those in the newspaper as a kid so always seem to enjoy this podcast too.

I am just scratching the surface on health-related podcasts so seriously cannot wait to find more! What is your favorite podcast, health-related or solely for entertainment?

Quick Workouts Just For You!

Quick Workouts

Who else needs quick workouts every now and then? I do not always have a full hour to devote to physical activity, even though I love getting active. Many times I simply do 1 to 3 twenty minute sessions throughout the day instead.

Today is the Fit Dish link up with The Fit Switch and Jill Conyers. We are all getting creative with quick workouts. I have not created any myself in awhile and to be honest, why recreate the wheel when there are a TON of awesome quick workouts out there?! So, I will be sharing my favorite quick workouts just for you!

These are all workouts I turn to regularly…

  • TIU Love Your Body with HIIT. High Intensity Interval Training is a GREAT way to get sweaty in little time. This has been one of my favorites for over a year now. I turn to it whenever I need a little boost of energy in the morning. I did it yesterday, in fact!

  • Yoga with Adriene Freedom Flow. This is one of those yoga routines that always puts a smile on my face. It is a GREAT way to start the day. I turn to this flow at least a few times per month. I do some of her other yoga videos on the regular too, but this is one of my all time favorites.

  • Tara Stiles Yoga for Strength and Focus. Another yoga video, but I am all about yoga these days. Not only for the strength and flexibility I feel from doing more yoga, but also the connection to self and the WAY I feel after doing it. It can be life changing if you let it.

Hope you enjoy whenever you need a quick HIIT or yoga routine! And don’t forget, you also have a VERY quick and easy way to get active… put your tennis shoes on and GET OUTSIDE. The weather is nice now so a walk or jog can provide a well-deserved escape!

My Favorite Crockpot Recipe

I have been asked twice now for a favorite crockpot recipe so I feel like I should blog about it too. I love the crockpot. Is it not the best?!? So easy to put stuff in there, forget about it, take in the pleasant smells (if it isn’t pleasant, you are cooking the WRONG thing), and wham! it’s done by dinner time.

Today is the Fit Dish link up with The Fit Switch and Jill Conyers. Perfect timing for a recipe share. This is my all-time favorite recipe and really, it is not just a Fall/Winter one. I have it all year round!

So, enjoy my Harvest Vegetable Chowder. And gotta give credit where credit is due… my mom has been making this for years and years. It was my favorite dish when away at college. She would have it ready for me when I drove on in and it was the perfect post-travel dish. Yum times three!

Harvest Vegetable Chowder

 

The recipe above is the way to make it without a crockpot, but trust me… you can do this in the crockpot too! If making this in the crockpot, the only change is to heat on low for 8 hours. The last hour is when you put in the frozen veggies, milk, and dill.

Enjoy! What is your FAVORITE crockpot recipe?

5 Peeps I Want to Workout With

Processed with Moldiv

Is it really Tuesday?!?! I mean, I am thankful it is Tuesday but I got hit with a surprise day of meetings yesterday and today. That meant my Wedding series post for Monday and today’s Fit dish link up got pushed to the back burner. But, I look forward to both so am still going to post (even if late).

Oh and it is week 2 of the National Nutrition Month challenge and we have a new giveaway for it this week. I have the giveaway info at the bottom of this post. Be sure to check it out! And join in on Instagram… it’s fun. Who doesn’t like having ideas of pictures to post?!?! Or maybe it’s just me.. I love doing instagram challenges.

Anyway, back to the Fit dish link up with The Fit Switch and Jill Conyers. Today’s topic is a good one… Picking 5 peeps I would LOVE to workout with. Well, besides you of course. 🙂 Am I making you blush?!? You are on top of the list so this is just 5 other peeps.

  1. Shaun T. Oh my goodness, I don’t know if I would be able to contain my excitement. And I would probably be watching him the WHOLE time. Even though he is taken (and not into women), he is still easy on the eyes. And kick butt!
  2. Chalene Johnson. Her workouts are so inviting and invigorating at the same time. I want to be friends with Chalene and her team. Seriously. We could do Turbofire, PIYO, or any other workout she would want to do.
  3. Anna Kaiser. Did you know she is in the original Insanity video? And now she is on her own creating AKT in motion. I REALLY want to try this workout and hope to one day. It’s only available in NYC I think, but praying it comes to Dallas OR I take a trip to NYC.
  4. Tara Stiles. I am reading her book right now and would LOVE to meet this girl. She is so real and authentic. And a yoga queen! I hope to create a strong yoga practice and I have her and Yoga with Adriene to thank for that!
  5. Karena & Katrina. Yes, the Tone It Up girls. A duo I would love to meet someday! I seriously want to be their friends and often wonder what it would have been like if I had met a friend and created Tone It Up with said friend. Too bad I missed that boat. But, still very thankful these ladies are motivating peeps in such a positive way.

Who would make your list?!?

And don’t forget about our National Nutrition Month giveaway for this week. Enter below:

a Rafflecopter giveaway

Life In Pictures: Healthy Inspo

 Fit Fed and Happy
Before I get started, let me give you the scoop on this link up real quick. This is a link up geared towards posting pics from this past week or day, no text needed. You read text all week on here so it is time for a break… Happy Friday, dear friends!
LJ for Lorna Jane
Life in pictures: Yoga
Life in pictures: Lorna Jane App Inspirational words
Life in pictures: I have to try this recipe!
Life in pictures: favorite breakfast of the week
Life in pictures: Go for the great!
I look so serious in the yoga pic, but don’t you worry… I was just uber “focused”. I love posting random wellness-related pics on Instagram. What is YOUR favorite type of picture to post?