We’re So Glad You’re Here!

Welcome to The Evolution of Mom. We are real moms, living real life. Sometimes it's beautiful and sometimes it's messy, but it's always authentic. So please, grab a cuppa coffee and join us on this journey of motherhood.

Ten Heads Are Better Than Two!

Well hello there! Did you miss us?

Those of you who are joining us new, welcome, we’re so glad to have you! Those of you who were with us before the big switch, welcome back, we sure missed you! I hope that you’ve enjoyed our posts so far this week. You may or may not have noticed that they’re coming to you from some of our eight new contributors. That’s right, I said EIGHT. While we were letting the pros at The Blog Press work on our big redesign (Thanks again, Jennifer and Dan!), Alicia and I were working hard to round up some fabulous mamas to bring you more specialized content on a wide range of topics. The result is a dream team of moms ready to answer the burning questions you didn’t even know you had! For more information on the new ladies, check out the new Meet Our Team page.

And, to celebrate our new look AND our new team, we’re going to bust out an old favorite…the giveaway/contest. It is SO easy to enter, and you could win a 7 piece Clinique gift set for you:

clinique2 and a equally awesome gift for your favorite contributor! All you have to do is check out the Meet Our Team page linked above, and then stop by our Facebook page and let us know which of our new experts you’re most excited to hear from. Easy peasy, right? Contest ends 4/30, one entry per person.

What are you waiting for? Go win something!!

XOXO

Rachel

Ancho Chicken Tacos

I’m not a woman of a lot of words.  I’m to the point, matter of fact, and conversation over.  That being said…we LOVE anything Mexican style food in my house.  So what better way for me to do my very first post than to introduce you all to tacos done my way.  For those of you who like your food spicier add more chili powder.  Load the tacos up and enjoy! Don’t forget to save an avocado pit to do a project with your kids (check out our Facebook page for details on that)!

taco_collage

Ingredients
1 pound skinless, boneless chicken breasts (I have also used fresh haddock)
3/4 teaspoon Ancho chile powder
1/2 teaspoon garlic powder or 2 fresh chopped garlic cloves
1/4 teaspoon ground cumin
1/4 teaspoon salt
1/4 teaspoon pepper
1/4 cup chicken broth
Cooking spray
1/8 teaspoon grated lime rind
2 limes limes, divided
1/4 cup light sour cream
2 ripe peeled avocados
2 cups packaged angel hair slaw (I have use broccoli slaw)
1/4 cup chopped fresh cilantro
2 plum tomatoes chopped (1 for guacamole, 1 for assembling taco)
1/4 cup red onion chopped
1/4 tsp cumin
1/2 tsp salt
1/2 tsp pepper
8 (6-inch) corn tortillas or soft tacos
shredded Mexican cheese blend

Preparation
Heat a large skillet or grill pan over high heat. Combine chili powder through pepper into gallon size zip lock bag.  Put chicken in bag and shake (just like shake n bake):

chicken_season_watermark

Coat pan with cooking spray. Add chicken to pan, cook until done, about 3-4 minutes per side:

chicken_grill_watermark

add chicken broth to pan.  Remove chicken from pan. Let sit for a few minutes before slicing into thin slices:

taco1_watermark

Combine rind, juice of 1/2 a lime, sour cream, cilantro, and 1/2 of a ripe peeled avacado.  Mix until avocado is smooth. Mix sour cream avocado mixture with slaw:

taco2_watermark

Combine remaining juice of limes, remaining avocado, cilantro, 1 plum tomato, cumin, cilantro, salt and pepper.  Mix until avocado is smooth and creamy:

taco3_watermark

taco4_watermark

  Heat tortillas according to directions. Assemble tacos and enjoy!

Mama’s Inner Monologue

Oh moms!!! It’s been ages. Literally, ages. Okay, I might be exaggerating, but it certainly seems like a long time since we’ve chatted. I’ve pondered and wondered and stressed out over what I could possibly say on our blog after it’s been so long. I feel like I need something profound. Life changing. Sadly…this isn’t what you will find today. Today I have to offer the many thoughts (well, thirty-eight of them, anyway) this mama has on most days. I wonder if anyone thinks the same things I do. It sure would be nice to not think I am totally insane.

Mamas Inner Monologue

1)      It’s way too early. We should sleep a little longer.

2)      Why, oh why did I hit snooze? We will never be ready in time.

3)      Do they have to eat breakfast every day?

4)      Coffee.

5)      If I wear the same sweatpants I wore to bed to drop off at school, will anyone notice?

6)      Why do I have to tell them to brush their teeth and wash their faces every day?

7)      Why do they only want me to pack home lunches on days where we have 6.5 minutes to get ready?

8)      Peanut butter and jelly…yummmmm-o, right off the knife. Maybe it’s not so bad that I had to make lunch.

9)      I’ll just wear sunglasses; no one at school will know I haven’t washed my face yet.

10)  Seriously, tomorrow we are getting up earlier. This is ridiculous.

11)   More Coffee.

12)  Seriously, where does the laundry come from? It multiplies while I sleep.

13)  I have the least amount of dirty laundry in this house. (Probably because I wear my pajamas to drop off the kids at school.)

14)  Maybe I should take a shower.

15)  Facebook is more fun than housework…or showering.

16)   Someday my kids will be really proud of me for finishing school as an adult.

17)   WHO TAKES CLASSES AS AN ADULT?  I do not have the brain power anymore.

18)   Do little boys take a class on how NOT to aim in a toilet? I clean these things every day.

19)   Is putting a toothbrush back in the drawer that hard? I wonder if they actually brushed their teeth this morning or just sucked the toothpaste off the brush.

20)  Crap, Kid #2’s library book was due today and it’s sitting on the counter.

21)   I am still in my sweatpants; I am not bringing it to school like this. It can wait until tomorrow.

22)   I should probably have taken something out of the freezer for dinner. Will it thaw out in time?

23)   OMG! It’s time to go get the kids. I can take a super quick shower and at least throw some jeans on so they will know I changed today.

24)  This is my favorite time of day. I love seeing their sweet faces when I pick them up from school.

25)  How can they be fighting already?

26)  Starbucks.

27)   I swear teachers give homework and make me sign 45 different places a day just to find out if I am competent. I am certain it has nothing to do with my kid.

28)   Oh, we need to write one more check to school? Great. That’s the 30th this month.

29)   You would think they could make their beds in less than 45 minutes. UMMM did I make my bed? What kind of example am I?

30)  How quickly can I get dinner on the table?

31)   It’s so sweet when they say nice things about my dinner. I really don’t know why we decided to stop at two kids. We should have more. Three is a good number.

32)  WHY IS THERE SO MUCH FOOD ON THE KITCHEN FLOOR? Does it fall out of their mouths?

33)  Bath time is the best time ever because my house is quiet, until Kid 2 starts screaming that she wants a head massage.

34)  Kid 1 doesn’t use a towel. It’s like the great flood in the bathroom Every. Single. Day.

35)  I am never having more kids. This is insane. Why would anyone have more than one kid? I am exhausted.

36)  Bed time. Why yes, let’s get water, read a book , tuck you in, kiss, hug, pray, come back for another kiss, answer 23 or 24 questions, go to the bathroom and then perhaps make it in to bed.

37)  Wine.

38)  Look at them when they’re sleeping.

Love.

Love.

They are the greatest gift I have ever been given. Their breathing alone is everything. I wouldn’t change a minute of this day. Not even one. I have the gift of being mom.

 

 

 

 

 

Smooches!Alicia

 

   Do tell ~  What is some of your ‘inner-mama monologue?’

Sometimes… I Miss Being Fat

Hey friends. It’s been ages. Let’s have some coffee (as I obviously am right now) and catch up. This is what is stirring in my head. I am sure I have already offended 20 people by using the word fat, but…well I don’t care. It’s how I would say it in real life to my friends, my husband…and I count you all among friends, so there it is. Sometimes, I really miss being fat. Now before I lose you, you should know that I am beyond thankful for my health, for the transformation my body has been through, for the ability to run and to play with my kids.

If you aren’t familiar with my journey over these last eighteen months, check it out here:
 Journey to Health: Installment 5 (It’s a Bumpy Road)

Here’s the part that might strike you as odd. But, for many years of my life…I was the smart one, the one with the pretty face, the one with the personality…have you heard all of these before? If you’ve struggled with your weight, I am sure you have. And truth be told, I felt a lot like I knew who I was at a higher weight. I was the smart one with the good personality…and you know what ~I know how to be her. I know how to make self deprecating jokes about my weight. I know how to be funny. I know how to work extra hard to get people to look past my appearance. Being thinner…I definitely don’t know how to deal with that. You mean guys look at me? Nope, not used to that. You mean women find me intimidating? Yeah, never experienced that either. It’s all so…so foreign and uncomfortable.

Fat was a security blanket for me. No one noticed me; I was safe to blend into the wall. Now, I’m 33, and people see me. It’s unsettling and uncomfortable. I sometimes want to just blend in. Now, am I saying that this is how everyone feels? Of course not. Some people may not have consciously or subconsciously enjoyed being overweight. I surely never thought I did. And now I’ve spent about six months at or near my goal weight. I’ve dealt with women who didn’t want to be my friend because I was more athletic than she (ha, if she only knew) and I’ve dealt with men (other than my husband) finding me attractive. Yikes.  Frankly, I find myself saying, “I wish I was just fat again,” like a broken record lately.

Losing weight is not just a physical journey. It is emotional, spiritual, mental and sexual as well. Every facet of your life changes. Your budget, your physical appearance, your reactions, your relationship dynamics ~ they all go through shifts, and at times its happening so rapidly that you don’t deal with while going through the process. And as I am here reflecting back over the last eighteen months of this journey, I realize there are definitely places along the way I should’ve asked for help. Reached out to professionals, doctors and friends who are going through it too. Going through the transition of two moves and 100 lbs of weight loss in one year is an awful lot to handle for anyone. I am glad to say that I am now seeing a counselor, have communication going with with my pastor and have reached out to a Weight Loss Surgery Support group here in Killeen, Texas. I just asked some friends to join me in a healthy eating/weight loss challenge as well. However, I wish I had done it sooner. I would like to go back and tell Alicia about six months ago that some counseling would have been a good idea and that it was okay to reach out. This is not a journey to do alone. Which is why I have opened up over the last year and shared this journey for all its ups and downs with you. It may not always be pretty, but you are not alone in the trials you are facing as you work toward your health.

Friends, there are many reasons being overweight could be a security blanket to us. Perhaps abuse caused you to pack on the pounds to keep would be abusers away. Perhaps you had a rocky home life and food was the one constant friend to turn to. Or maybe you cannot remember a time when you weren’t overweight…and you honestly don’t know who you are without all of it on your body. Let me remind you tonight that you are more than your weight, you are more than your fastest time on a run, you are more than a size. You are a beautiful creation and your body is a temple to be treasured and cared for. That ultimately is what it is all about Moms. So grab a partner to journey with, ask for help, admit that its hard…and above all honor the gift you’ve been given as a woman, this beautiful body that may have bore children or arms that may have held a child you’ve taken in as your own. Take care of yourselves moms. You are treasured and needed.