Weekend of Celebrating

The celebrating started Friday when I picked Logan up from daycare. He made me a Mother’s Day present at daycare! Footprint butterfly and a handprint on the bottom. ๐Ÿ™‚

On Saturday we went to a friend’s house for a little surprise birthday dinner for another friend. My friend Star and her boyfriend Larry made a feast! They made marinated chicken and veggie kebobs and grilled them up. There was also rice (I skipped that to save my carbs for dessert!). I made a spinach, kale and chard salad topped with carrots, strawberries and feta cheese.

Yummy dinner!

Star made our friend Samantha a gorgeous Polish cake.

How beautiful is that cake? So pretty. It was really delicious, sort of like shortbread with custard and whipped cream. Logan ate some rice, chicken and strawberries and he LOVED the whipped cream. ๐Ÿ˜‰

Here is the recipe:

The cake wasn’t overly sweet. It looks like it would be really sweet and rich but it was light and summery.

It was such a nice night! We had a great time and it was so lovely spending some time with friends.

On Sunday we celebrated Mother’s Day by going out to breakfast. (But first Logan woke me up in the cutest way…I was still asleep and then all of a sudden Michael said “Wake up mommy! Happy Mother’s Day!” and I open my eyes and see a big goofy grin on Logan’s face and then he giggled and laughed and crawled all over me. It was probably the best moment of the day!)

We went to Genie’s Cafe. We got there early enough that we got a table immediately! That is unheard of in Portland!

I got a complimentary Mimosa for Mother’s Day and a delicious mug of coffee (much needed). It was a busy morning but we got our food pretty quickly. I’ve been craving French Toast for about a month and kept putting it off. I decided to save it for my cheat meal for Mother’s Day.

The French Toast was perfect and delicious and really satisfied my craving. The one downside to cutting out carbs is that when you finally do eat a bunch of them, they sit like a rock and make me really sleepy. I just don’t like the way I feel after eating heavy carbs now. ๐Ÿ™

Michael got the caprese hash and said it was really good:

Logan had a bunch of my French Toast and he loved it. ๐Ÿ™‚ First time having it and first time having maple syrup. He’s a fan. Logan got me a gift (a new heart rate monitor–will review it soon!) and a card, which was very sweet.

After breakfast, Logan took a nap and I went swimming. It felt wonderful. Then we all ran some errands and went for a walk in between the rain showers. For dinner Michael picked up Pad Thai to continue my carb cheat day. It really hit the spot. Pad Thai is something else I’ve been craving for a long time!

It was a really lovely Mother’s Day and I was glad I got to spend the weekend with some of my favorite people!

As for the diet: I am going to reign it in today and tomorrow and try and really cut the carbs and weigh in Wednesday. Although I’m not looking forward to it!

Happy Mother’s Day to all the moms out there!

The Brilliance of Butterfly

There is a brilliance in the butterfly. It’s the perfect exercise. The perfect stroke. I’ve frequently said that swimming is the best sport. It’s a full body workout without the hard impact on joints like running can be. It’s a fantastic sport for obese people trying to lose weight. In fact, it’s how I lost my weight.

What makes the butterfly stroke so unique and special is that it truly does use your entire body. The breast stroke and freestyle are great strokes and use mostย of your body but not like the butterfly. The butterfly takes grace, coordination and strength to be able to do it. You have to have the upper body and core strength in order to do it. The butterfly uses your core in a way that other swimming strokes don’t and you’ll see results.

You have to be able to move your arms and body through the water, then above the water. Your arms move together from behind you, up and out of the water and end above your head before returning to the water. During this, ย your legs do a dolphin kick. This stroke is a tremendous workout for yourย shouldersย and core.

I’m not skilled in the butterfly. It’s the one stroke I never properly mastered in my youth and now as an adult I rarely do it. I’m like a fish in the water–all other strokes areย seamless, splashless and graceful (which I’m not on land!!) but the butterfly is a lot of splashing and thrashing for me. I wish I was better at it.

I recently got a question from a reader: ย “I just found out that i have arthiritis in my knee and have decided to continue my weightloss journey by swimming but can I still lose my 100 pounds by swimming?”

My answer: Heck yes! Swim! It’s the best exercise and it’s how I lost most of my weight. Swimming was what activity I chose to do. I did it 2-4 times a week for about a year and then started introducing other activities (like the treadmill and elliptical). But really, swimming was how I lost probably 75 pounds. I think it’s a great choice for people trying to lose weight.ย If you are new to swimming, start here. And good luck!

QUESTION: Can you do the butterfly stroke?