Nov 26, 2013

My Measurements

So, I found that in May I did my measurements - you can find those here.

Today I was curious and had Megan measure me at the gym this morning.

Here are the results:
May 2013
Waist - 33"
Hips - 38"
Chest - 38"
Arm - 13"
Thigh - 25" 
Weight: Somewhere around 150-153
Pant Size: 8
November 2013
Waist: 34 1/2" (What happened here?!) (+1.5")
Hips: 39" (UGH!) (+1")
Chest: 36 3/4" (-1.25")
Arm: 11 3/4" (-1.25")
Thigh: 21" (-4") HALLELUJAH!
Weight: The exact same
Pant Size: The exact same (Although I do have my one pair of size 6 jeans in eyesight...)

April 2013 - Arms were not toned at all.
I am not too sure what happened in the waist and hips (well, I am... it was darn good food, and not much dieting (clean eating)) but now know I have some target areas to hit and some dieting to clean up.  However, I have ALWAYS been thigh-heavy.  Losing those inches on my thighs is pretty impressive and I owe it all to RUNNING and LIFTING HEAVY.  I had an ankle fracture in March that kept me from walking/running from April-June.  I wasn't cleared for any type of running until July.  But, I will do a complete running blog post in December after my first half marathon...OMG 12 days!

This was taken May 2013.  I need to take another
to compare.

Moral of this post: Always measure, always take pictures.  People on Facebook get very crabby when you post gym updates, workout selfies, etc.  NEWS FLASH: I chalk it up to jealousy.  To each their own.  However, the wonderful Instagram world is all devoted to PICTURES.  And there are people on there that I don't even know; giving me such great feedback, positive vibes, and overall good mojo!!  So, if you want some great motivation, some great feedback, and some great pictures to look at ... get yourself on Instagram!  You can find me @mneatherlin.  I love looking at people's results to help motivate me and I hope that my own pictures/results help motivate someone else.

No, I am not a blogger.  No, I am not a dietician.  No, I am not someone who has always been severely obese nor do I pretend I once was.  My highest weight was 196 the day I delievered my daughter 5.5 years ago. I stayed around 176 for 3 years after that before I decided to join Weight Watchers.  I did not join a gym or start lifting weights until February of 2011.  And then it was not consistent; more so when I had vacations, birthdays, summer, etc. coming up (i.e. excuses).  I started going to the gym three days a week and running once/twice a week hard core in August 2013, just to give you some sort of reference.

There are lots of people I can't connect with and that feel they can't connect with me because I've never been a certain size or weight; that is OKAY.  Find the people who HAVE been in your shoes.  Find the people who share your stats.  Find the people who MOTIVATE YOU! 

July 2013 - Cleared to run

June - Notice you don't see the
back view!

It is all about running, lifting heavy, and
Helping Megan with an ab video
Can you see my baby ab? ;)

Nov 8, 2013

Countdown to 30: It's Here!

Today is my very last day in my 20s.  I don't remember my last day in my teens, so I am glad to be writing today so that I can remember forever.  These last 10 days have shown you (and myself) my journey over the last decade.  Man, it has been a rough ride.  I am stronger than ever before and I am happier than ever before.  I want to start with saying thank you to my husband, my daughter, my mom and dad, and my sister and her family.  I am only who I am because they are behind me every step of the way.  I could not go on without their love, compassion, and support.

The year 2013 did not disappoint.  I'm secretly hoping 2014 is C.A.L.M.

November 2012 - My Granny was to go into a hospice facility so she could get a bit stronger and get through the holidays without added illness.

The entire family came together for Thanksgiving and it was unbelievable.  We knew the end was near and we all held each other up.

The days before she went into hospice care.  Melt my heart.

The family my Granny and Grandpa created.

Spending Thanksgiving eating popcorn. :)

December 2011 -

Mommy was getting healthier, one plank at a time!

My little Diva!

Love her pretty smile!
We spent the first part of December in Texas, but Andrea and I loaded the kids and headed to Oklahoma as soon as school was out.  We were going to stay through Christmas day and then head home.  The next day it began to snow.  We stayed.  Well, actually God had other plans for us.

December 28, 2012 my beautiful, caring, strong, and compassionate Granny, Bonnie Rose, earned her wings.  I remember the day it happened.  Mom and Joyce needed some rest so I headed up to hospice.  At this point Granny was already unresponsive.  We were keeping her comfortable and just waiting.  I spent three hours with her that morning.  I talked and cried, talked and cried.  I held her hand.  I told her it was time to go and be with my Grandpa and all her family.  They were waiting.    That same evening, with my mom and Aunt Joyce by her side, she crossed into those pearly gates.  Not a day goes by where I don't think about it, want to call her for a recipe, or just think about how she would have handled a situation.  She was a beautiful woman that we had to let go way too soon.

Another special sidenote: Andrea was pregnant with Astoria when my Grandfather passed in 2008.  She was able to find out the gender before he passed... it was bittersweet.  This time, Andrea was pregnant with Asher.  We didn't yet know his gender, but we do know that Granny got to meet him before we ever did.  He was blessed from the beginning.

January 2013 I decided I wanted to become a runner.  I was healthy, I was getting stronger and more fit, it was time!

(In December I am going to do a whole-year recap on my running and fitness journey!)

In February I sat out to run 7 miles.  I had been preparing, prepping, etc. and I was going to do it.  Well, around 7:30am and around mile 3.5 I slipped off the sidewalk into a hole.  I fractured my ankle.  I was devastated.  I had signed up for my first 10k (6.2) miles and it was in 2 weeks!!!  I was determined to run that race, and I did!  (I did not know I fractured my ankle until May...)

This was after 2 weeks.. oh man, it hurt.
I ran those glorious 6.2 miles in 1:11 and it was UNBELIEVABLE!
 So in March, I decided to do it again!  This time it was a night race where everyone was decked out in glow sticks, etc.  It was a 5k and I finished in 34 minutes.  Running is such a high!

5k - 34 minutes
April 2013 - Life was great and the school year was coming to an end!

Oklahoma Wedding - April

In May, my sweet girl turned 5 years old!  She wanted a Spongebob Birthday and her Daddy did everything he could to make it happen!  Including making this beautiful and amazing cake.  She (and we) are truly blessed!
Special girl!
Also in May, I GRADUATED!  I officially was finished with my Master's Degree!  Having never stepped on the campus for classes, I decided I wanted to take a mini-vacation to Beaumont to walk across that stage!  It was an amazing time and I am, once again, blessed to have my family by my side.

Also in May, Olivia graduated from Pre-K!  She would be starting Kindergarten in August and it was time to say goodbye to the school where it all started.  I wasn't ready for Kindergarten!

Olivia's Graduation

2013 Graduates!
Lake time!
 May also proved to be a month of sadness and a true test of my strength.  Olivia's biological father, my ex-husband, passed away suddenly.  Up until this point Olivia did not know of Tony.  She had met him several times, but only knew him of Tony.  I decided right then that my 5 year old daughter was about to learn her family history.

You can read the entire story of my early life and how I handled his death here.
I drew Olivia a family tree and tried to explain everyone the best I could.  She had lots of questions, but none that I felt I couldn't handle or explain.  She still brings him up and asks why he had to die, why he didn't come to her birthday parties, etc.  She is still trying to learn why we call Tim daddy even though he isn't her "real" daddy.  She is learning.  We are learning.  We are all in this together and as long as she knows she is loved more than anything in the world; we have succeeded.

June - Tim and I finally got to take our honeymoon!  We spent almost a week in Mexico soaking up the rays getting sunburnt horribly, getting food poisoning and it was amazing!
Pops and his girls.

Nana and her girls.
 June 20, 2013 - Asher James entered the world!  I am so glad Andrea kept him cookin' until I got back from Mexico.  It was close!  This little boy is a blessing, is an easy baby, and is OH SO CUTE!  Olivia adores him and STILL wants to hold him any time she can. :) And no, she does not need a little brother...

In July, Olivia had her nose vessels cauterized.  She had always suffered from intermittent nose bleeds, but they would bleed heavily and cause her discomfort.  The surgery was a success and we have not had any more nosebleeds!

She keeps me on my toes!
Once my Granny passed, my Mom and Dad moved into her home.  I wouldn't have had this any way; this is where my Mom belonged.  This is where my family belongs.  But, this meant my parents had to sell the only house Andrea and I have ever known.  This picture was taken in that house before we said goodbye for the last time.

 In July I got a new job.  I was no longer going to be teaching as a regular classroom teacher, but as an Interventionist.  I serve students in Kindergarten through 5th Grade who are At-Risk and falling below grade level.  The job is challenging, but I was glad to be putting my time in somewhere outside of the classroom.
July 2013
In August, I was able to travel to Cincinnati, Ohio to take part in the Pure Romance National Conference.  I had joined the Pure Romance family in December 2012 and it has provided my family with great supplemental income.  I love the job!  I love getting to meet new people, make people laugh, as well as educate women on their bodies. 

 Olivia and I also started new schools!  Olivia was beginning Kindergarten at a Math, Science, and Technology school.  She had to test to be accepted and we were thrilled for this opportunity for her.  I was terrified of starting my new school, but was glad I already knew some of the teachers!
September - I had been going to the gym regularly at 5am/3 days a week and running one day on the weekends.  I love going to the gym and have an amazing MOTIVATOR.
Getting stronger one day at a time!
October - How was it already possible we had reached our 1st Wedding Anniversary?  My husband is amazing.  I couldn't have picked a better choice for me and my craziness, not to mention my crazy daughter!

One year later and the dress still fits: SUCCESS!

Pure Happiness!
I also hit a HUGE milestone and ran 11 miles!!!  I am training for a half marathon in December and this was SO amazing to me.  I still can't believe I did it.

Tomorrow is my 30th Birthday.  I have an AMAZING day planned with family and friends.  Before the celebrations begin, I will be running in a 5k to honor Pancreatic Awareness.  This race will be very emotional.  Andrea, Tim, Rex, Mom, the girls, and I will be running to honor both of our Parents/Grandparents/Great-Grandparents who were taken too soon by cancer.
Shirt made by Ruffles With Love
I can't say enough about this last decade.  It has been the hardest and the best.  There have been ups and there have been downs.  There have been tears and there has been laughter.  But most of all, there have been memories.

See you in the next decade!!!!

November 8, 2013

Nov 7, 2013

Countdown to 30: Day 2

Getting so close!!!

The year was 2011-2012 - Gosh, how is it not STILL 2012?  Where in the world did 2013 go?!

The 2011 year had started off rocky, but ended so happily!  Tim and I were in a strong relationship with a great future.  Olivia loved Mr. Tim.  He started off as Mr. Tim because this is how I introduced her to him.  It was the cutest thing ever and he loved it too.

Around December 2011, the decision was made for Tim to move in with us.  He was going to be a financial help as well as an emotional and physical piece of our puzzle.  He was great filling in anytime I needed a handy man, he cleaned all the time, and didn't mind watching Olivia when I needed some time away.  It almost seemed to good to be true and it all unfolded so quickly.  I guess the second time around you know know.

Happy Couple!
Melt my heart!

Christmas 2011 - (There was a mistake from the last blog post.)  This would be the last Christmas we all spent together at Granny's house with Granny.  More on that later.

Olivia's Elf: Chippy

Around January 2012 I took a giant leap of faith and booked a cruise!  It was going to be a party of 10... me and Tim rooming together.  We had only been dating for 6 months and now I was booking a cruise with him 6 months away!  I remember Andrea and I going through all the scenarios of what ifs if Tim and I didn't make it.  Hahaha!  

Happy New Year!
March 2012
First roller coaster!

Mommy actually dislikes carousels

April 2012

Oliva's 4th Birthday!

The crazy combo unit!
 With Olivia's birthday being May 1, you can never predict the weather.  This year it was decent enough to have a waterslide/bounce house combo.  It was also Olivia's first year to invite students from her classroom.

Backing up a bit: This school year, 2011/2012, Olivia embarked on her very first year of Public School!  My school district has a program where teacher kids/grandkids can attend Pre-K at age 3 and age 4 for a discounted rate.  The students are in an inclusion room with Special Education/Disabled students.  I was very apprehensive, but it was cheaper than daycare and she was going to be learning in a public school system where the curriculum was going to help prepare her for Kindergarten!  My little Peanut looked SO big on her first day of school.
August 2011 - Age 3
September 2011 - age 4
Little did I know that her teacher would become one of my very best friends!  Olivia THRIVED in her new environment and quickly became the "little blonde sassy pants in Pre-K".  I can't imagine where she gets it from.

Olivia and Miss Henson - May 2012

June 2012 - Well, let's just say it was a big month!  Here is my excerpt from a previous post:

June 27, 2012 

Tim asked Rex if he would watch Olivia because he wanted to take me ring shopping.  There had been many talks of marriage, what kind of ring I wanted, big wedding or small, etc.  Yet, I was ecstatic to actually be looking and trying ON wedding rings!  Ah!  We found ourselves at Zale's looking at all of the traditional wedding rings and settings.  I wasn't satisfied.  I wanted something unique without being too flashy.  After not finding much we moved down to the men's bands.  Tim found one he loved and was perfectly happy.  Well, next to the man's wedding bands were the woman's bands.  I looked down and was floored.  There was a simple brushed white gold ring surrounded by two rows of diamonds.  It was the one.  I didn't care that it wasn't big and flashy or that it wasn't a solitaire type stone; I knew it was the one for my finger. 
We purchased the rings and put a rush order on mine to be ready on Tuesday, July 3.  Well, I was going to be in Oklahoma that week so I knew he still had the upper hand on when he would propose or even let me see my ring. 

 Much to my surprise and elation, Tim was just as excited as I was! 

July 5, 2012

When I came home from Oklahoma, Tim wanted me to try on the ring because he felt it was going to be too small.  I happily obliged but informed him that if I tried on the ring, his chances of getting it back off my finger were slim.  And well, it was true.  Tim told me he didn't want me to take the ring off; I was ecstatic!  It was finally MINE and on MY finger to STAY!  The only issue was he hadn't proposed.  At that moment, I didn't care.  We were both so excited and instantly made it public to the world (via Facebook, of course!).  I told him he had until midnight to ask me to marry him or else.  Now, did I really have an 'or else' in mind?  Of course not.

11:25pm - Tim stated, "I want to live the rest of my life with you." 
To which I responded, "I'll be right here."

Soon I will have the honor of being Mrs. Timothy Neatherlin.

July 2012 - It was CRUISE TIME and I had a RING on my FINGER!!!  Tim and I had made it! ;)  The 10 of us (5 couples!) all set out on Galveston for a Carnival cruise!  There were lots of newbies and we were all very excited to spend the time together!  It was an AMAZING time and from the moment I stepped OFF the boat, I wanted back ON!
We all had shirts made to match!
All 10 of us ready for the beach!
August 2012 - Little did I know this would be my last year teaching in a traditional classroom.  I was entering my 12th month of graduate school with an expected completion of May 2013.  I was ready to further my career and devoted a lot of time to making connections, reaching out to various other opportunities, etc.  I knew my dream would come true eventually!

Around this time Tim and I picked the Dallas Arboretum as our wedding spot!  The day was going to be October 20, 2012.  Yes, that was not very far away and it was the perfect way to do it.  Not too much stress, very personal, very small, and somewhere we can always go back to visit!

In early September 2012 my little cousin Amy got married!  We traveled with Mom, Andrea, the girls, and Granny down to Conroe, Texas.  This was the first big car trip for the girls and they did great!  The wedding was gorgeous and so much fun!  My Granny was pushing the girls around on her scooter/walker.  She was laughing and making jokes.  She was dancing and being her own beautiful self. 

Granny pushing Olivia around on the walker.
Mom and Granny
About 4 weeks later she fell and hit her head.  She ended up going to the ER for a cat scan.  With much surprise, Granny had Brain Cancer.  She had a tumor growing on her brain that there was nothing that could be done for her.  It was devastating.  It was heart breaking.  It was a strong woman who was going to be taken away way too soon. 

 As soon as Andrea and I received the news that it was cancer, we got in the car at 4am and drove to be by her side.  My Aunt was driving in from Houston and my Mom was on vacation in Colorado.  It was a very special day to spend by her side.  Things went down hill quickly.

October 2012 was the big month!

It started with a painting party for my Bachelorette Party!

And then the big day! October 20, 2012 I married my best friend!  I married someone my daughter would call Daddy!

I wish I could share all 200 pictures... they are so hard to choose the perfect ones.. they were all perfect!

It was such a magical day... that of course went by way too fast!

Memory Chair - Granny was too sick to make it to the wedding :(
Halloween 2012 -

Yes, she's wearing an Easter dress.
Olivia and HER Miss Henson!
Happy Halloween!
I can't believe it... I've made it this far!  One more post showcasing this current year... and then... it happens.  I enter my 30s.  What a ride it has been!


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