Day 1

Here we go (for the hundredth time honestly). I’ve decided to begin focusing on my health again. But this time is different. This time I have a true desire to change my situation. I’m tired of being uncomfortable, not just how people look at me, but actually how I feel. Sleeves being too tight, not being able to do some stretches because my belly is in the way, and more. I’m just ready.

So to help keep me accountable, I’m logging my progress here. Scary thought, but I don’t care. I made Henke House to have a group of women who support and empower each other. That’s what I wanted it for, that’s what I’ll use it for.

I was an athlete in high school. I was strong and fit, but I built no healthy eating habits. So when I stopped being active (and started birth control) I gained between 60-80 pounds.

I’m not so worried about the scale, it’s more about how I feel. I want to be able to keep up. I want to be able to hike with my husband and not get tired. I want to be active. I want to have kids eventually, and want to be able to play with them and be an example of health. So here are my measurements and goals, however my goal weight is flexible.

CW: 223 lbs GW: 150 lbs BFP: 40%

Right Arm: 16″     Left Arm: 15 1/4″

Bust: 47 3/4″

Waist: 42″

Hips:  16 3/4″

Right Thigh: 27″     Left Thigh: 16 3/4″

The struggles I’ve realized I have today:

  • I don’t drink enough water, at all.
  • I have trouble balancing meals throughout the day
  • I don’t eat enough, I need to have smaller meals but more snacks during the day to keep my metabolism going.
  • I don’t create routines with my work out habits, which is going to be difficult.

 

The praises for today:

  • I didn’t die at BeatBox class last night (if you have one of these classes near you, highly recommend. It’s cardio and strength using boxing and kick boxing and light weights)
  • I am sore, which means I’m gaining good muscle
  • I slept better last night after day 1 of eating better.
  • I feel better today as far as my gut.

 

Goals for this week:

  • Drink more water!!!
  • Drink more water, seriously.
  • Continue to eat better, especially this weekend.
  • Make some plans, write out my food plans and work out plans.
  • Go to the grocery, so I’m prepped with good food.

Wedding Gift Ideas That Couples Love

It’s wedding season y’all!

We have 4 weddings in the next two months alone, and gift decisions always seem difficult.

You can always go off the registry or be a rule follower and stick to it. Maybe you are on a budget, or maybe all the fun stuff has already been bought. I compiled a list to help spark your creativity! I tried to pick something for everyone’s budget!

Number 1: Floral Subscription

How much fun is this! It can be more on the higher end when it comes to budget, you can seriously go crazy with this option.

Some big names regarding flower subscriptions include:

  • BloomsyBox
  • Bouqs
  • ProFlowers (they do have a flower of the month box)
  • Flower Muse (really pricey)

Also check out nearby flower shops, you may find one that is super unique and cheaper. (Amelia’s Flower Truck is a great option if you’re near Nashville)

Another option is simply a gift card. We have an amazing little shop here in town called Flowers by Phoebe. It’s a dangerous little shop that could suck all of my money right out of my wallet. It is super cute and would be a perfect gift certificate idea (or house warming gift!).

Number 2: Crock Pot 

Yes I know, this isn’t as fun. But you could stay in the lower end of your budget with this idea. You could also fill the crock pot with goodies, maybe some oven mitts or a recipe book. You can spice up the crock pot to make it whatever you want, add your own flavor! (Crock pot liners are an amazing invention! I’d recommend putting this in your gift)

Number 3: Unique Pottery

I got two hand made bowls for my wedding from a local pottery maker. I love them. I use one for a fruit bowl and one for a snack bowl in my kitchen. They are so unique and I think they are an awesome, thoughtful piece. If you don’t have a local pottery maker, try Etsy. Do this in advance though because sometimes these are made to order and then need time to ship.

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Find this handmade beauty here

Number 4: Fun Throw Blanket or Decor Pillows

These are fun if you have a bride who is into artsy stuff. You can find these kinds of things all over, you just have to look. Target even has some fun ones. Check these pillows out from Wayfair, some of them are a little cray cray. Target has good options too!

Seriously there are SO many options! And for every option you find more! Just look around, you will find something that fits your style.

 

Number 5: Mugs or Coffee Makers

This is for the coffee lovers. Maybe get a french press or some fun mugs for their new place. I love having fun mugs. If you know the couple enough, get them some good coffee or a grinder, or maybe an espresso machine. Just depends on your taste. This is something that I wish I would of put on my registry.

 

Number 6: Ninja Blender

THIS THING IS MY LIFE SAVER! I make my shakes in it every morning and it works awesome! It’s awesome for everything from cookie dough to guacamole. There are so many useful attachments. You can find these on sale online or at Bed, Bath and Beyond. All hail the Ninja!

 

Number 7: Camping Gear

My husband turned into a dedicated outdoors-man after we got married, I don’t know why. But we have used our camping gear a LOT. Camping has become one of our favorite summer weekend activities. It’s a cheap way to get away and it can be as glamorous as you make it. We use a tent, air mattress, cot for under the mattress, and a canopy tent for over the picnic table. We do have a cooler and other fun gear like a waterproof lock box and hammocks. Almost everything we have was given to us as a gift. It is something we will probably continue as a tradition as we have kids and grow as a family. I’ve found good deals on Amazon for our camping stuff, but read reviews! Not all things are made the same so read the do’s and don’ts of each product you think about buying.

 

Number 8: Drinking Gear

Whether is a mixed drink set or a wine glass holder, these are always great ideas. We have a cork holder and a wine rack from our wedding and we use them a lot. It can be put in any house and most people use them. This cute set from Crate and Barrel is super cute and they have a lot of options.

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Number 9: Board Games

I don’t know about you but my husband and I love to play games. We enjoy doing this with friends. Some board games are somewhat expensive and others are super cheap. You could easily put together a little gift basket with cards and dice inside. There are so many out there and there also little books that explain games that you use regular cards to play. Here are some of our favorite games to play:

  • Katan
  • Speed (deck of cards)
  • Kemps (deck of cards)
  • Euchure (deck of cards)
  • Golf
  • Yatzee
  • Apples to Apples

 

Number 10: Anything Personalized

There are so many options from wall decor, to pillows, to frames. Just go looking online until you find something you like. Make sure you spell names and get information right! That would be somewhat embarrassing (my cousin was gifted coasters with the letter K on them, her new last name started with a C).

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Find this here

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Find this here

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Find this here

 

 

 

Giving gifts is always fun! It’s especially fun when you are able to pick out something that the couple loves and uses for years to come! As always compare your prices and coupons, this little bit of time could save you bundles.

Fear is Not From God

This has been a challenge for me. God has really been working on me this last year to stop being afraid and to follow him recklessly.

Those of you who know me, probably have heard me ramble on about crazy ideas that I thought I would do some day or maybe I could help someone do. I’ve always been afraid to do it. Afraid of people’s judgment or rejection. Afraid of failing.

Fear has kept me doing things or not doing things I should do. For example, putting off a degree that I wanted because I thought I should be working. Staying at a job that wasn’t a good fit for me because I wanted others to be proud of me. Not starting a business because I was afraid of the risk. Not reaching out to someone because I was afraid of what would happen.

This blog, this blog was a fear. For many months I worked on it, but didn’t share it because I was afraid of people I know seeing it. I was afraid they’d find grammar mistakes. I was afraid of what they’d think.

This blog was a huge leap of faith for me.

I shared the blog on my personal page on Facebook. Out of immediate regret I text my husband and told him how afraid I was. His response hit home, I knew it was God talking through him.

“The only opinion that matters is God’s. And he said we are already his beloved, masterpiece, and nothing we can do can ever change that. So the opinions of others are really meaningless. I believe in you.”

Alright God, I hear you.

So for those of you who are holding something back. Something you know you could be good at, something you know you could share, a talent that you could bless people with, PUT IT OUT THERE! You have that talent or idea for a reason. There is no coincidence with God. His plan is so big and so good, our brains can’t comprehend.

So step forward in faith and remember your fear is not from God. Here are some verses to help you.

“So do not fear, for I am with you; do not be dismayed, for I am your God. I will strengthen you and help you; I will uphold you with my righteous right hand.”  Isaiah 41:10

“Peace is what I leave with you; it is my own peace that I give you. I do not give it as the world does. Do not be worried and upset; do not be afraid.” John 14:27

“There is no fear in love. But perfect love drives out fear, because fear has to do with punishment. The one who fears is not made perfect in love.” 1 John 4:18

“Have I not commanded you? Be strong and courageous. Do not be terrified; do not be discouraged, for the Lord your God will be with you wherever you go.” Joshua 1:9

“Cast your cares on the Lord and he will sustain you; he will never let the righteous fall.” Psalm 55:22

 

Razor Subscription for Women

I’m sure you’ve seen the advertisements for Dollar Shave Club. Paying less for razors that are delivered to my door? Why, sure, don’t mind if I do.

I tried Dollar Shave Club. Didn’t mind it a bit. I ordered shave butter, which was really nice, I still use it.

I have no complaint about the razor itself. It was a nice razor, and did it’s job just fine. But the design, is so boyish. I did feel like I’d borrowed my husband’s razor and used it for my legs.

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But then, a friend at work recommended Billie to me. I AM IN HEAVEN. Billie is very cheap but super high quality. It’s girly, you can choose your color. It comes with a removable shower holder, that holds your razor with a magnet. It makes it super easy to reach and keeps it up and out of sight when you aren’t using it (mommies this is great if you have little ones using the same shower). The razor has a gel-like outside that provides a smooth lotion as you shave. BONUS! Plus the holder keeps the gel from moving off the razor onto something else and makes it last longer.

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Now for the best part, I pay $9 dollars every 2 months for my razor refills (four cartridges)! I never run out and I’m very happy with their quality. I was paying $12.99 for refill razors more often than that when I was using my Venus! I don’t have to remember or worry about it.

If you are looking for a girly, great razor that comes in a subscription Billie is the way to go. They also offer shave cream, lotion, and body wash that are very reasonably priced. You have complete control of your subscription. I don’t know that I will ever switch again.

 

Billie, you have one happy customer here.

Fix Your Broken Highlighter

I have always wanted a Birthday Pallet from Kylie Cosmetics after seeing Christen Dominique’s tutorial on a back to school look. No rhyme or reason but I never bought it new. It was out of stock and wasn’t coming back.

(Here is the link to her video, please note her amazing give away is closed but her make up is still flawless: Video )

I found it on Poshmark in the box, someone hadn’t used it. I ordered it for $5 off. It finally came, after a snaffoo with the post office. I opened it…

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The whole highlighter pan was empty and the product was all over the box. I don’t know if the mail lady played the congo’s with it, but it was destroyed. I tried to convince myself, I wouldn’t use the highlighter anyways and I had gotten it on a discount. It would be okay.

But I stared at the empty pan, and I just wasn’t satisfied. I decided, I’m going to fix this highlighter.

So I first, I read other people’s success stories on Pinterest, because Pinterest knows all.

I gathered a spoon, a make up brush, and some rubbing alcohol. I laid it down on a towel and initated surgery.

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I very carefully put the pieces back in the pan and broke up the big chunks. I packed the powder down as evenly as I could with a spoon and cleaned the edges of the pan with a make-up brush.

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I slowly, and carefully poured rubbing alcohol in the corners and the edges and continued to pack it down with the spoon, trying to keep it even. It seemed as though the rubbing alcohol helped it adhere to the pan it’s self.

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In this picture, you can see the gaps in the corners, I kept add drops of the rubbing alcohol and packing it down until these went away.  I let it dry over night.

 

And Tada! Crisis avoided! It takes patience and more patience. It’s not a fast process but I’m happy to report I used it this morning and it hasn’t seemed to affect the product or application and it’s still in the pan!

Natural Deodorant or Not?

 

First off, I’m NOT a doctor, nor an expert of the arm pit. Just trying to save the next person from being surprised by the pit detox that becomes concerning if you are expecting it. Seriously, I made a doctor’s appointment because of mine. 

I once read this really scary article about the effects of normal store antiperspirants and their aluminum content. After freaking out a bit, I jumped immediately to switching to natural deodorant. Like any good person does, I did absolutely no research. None.

I had no idea there was a detox period or the effects I could have of making the switch.

While the switch is ultimately a good one, there is a period time where your body will detox your armpits. It’s basically unclogging all the junk you’ve put on your pits with regular antiperspirants. Some natural deodorant sites even warn you of this time period. As they say, hindsight is always twenty twenty, so let me give you a little explanation of what to expect on your first 7-10 days of your natural deodorant.

  • Prepare to sweat baby. Lots and lots and lots of sweat. You will sweat more than normal. Avoid gray shirts/dresses, unlike I did. I ended up wearing my North Face fleece over my dress because it was so bad. So I was then sweating more but at least no one could see it.
  • What’s that smell? It’s you. You will probably stink more than normal. Don’t worry this will go away.
  • You may experience tenderness in your armpit by your lymph node. I only had this for a day or two.
  • The next thing is where I got concerned, your arm pit may darken or turn dark red color. If this happens you may want to switch to a more sensitive natural deodorant. According to my research this is because of baking soda in the natural deodorant. I read where this may go away with time, even if you continue to use the first deodorant, the one causing the redness. I decided to go ahead and switch.

There are a few things that others say to do that may speed this process up. First thing is to drink lots of water, more than your normal consumption. Try to work up a sweat more and longer, this will help speed up the process. Watching your diet during this time can help, eating cleaner can minimize some of these symptoms. You can also try dry brushing. I obviously didn’t try any of these, because I had no idea what was going on. I did try dry brushing on the redness and it helped a bit.

So what kind do you get? There are many things to consider. Scent, application method, price, and more. Personally, I couldn’t imagine trying to spoon my deodorant on in the morning. So that turned me off to a few types. A popular jar brand is Primal Pit Paste, I’ve read some good things on this one but I haven’t tried it personally.

Scent wise, I really haven’t found one that I LOVE. I will let you know when I do. I was using Native Deodorant, I tried the unscented, which was fine, as well as the coconut and vanilla. They were ‘normal’ smelling. I didn’t like the lavender and rose. I smelt like a walking hedge bush. It was just way too much. I did switch from Native, because their baking soda content seemed to be causing my redness. I am currently trying Schmidt’s and so far so good. I tried their sensitive line in the scent coconut pineapple. It’s decent, it’s still a little odd smelling for my taste. But I have ALWAYS had ‘shower-fresh’ scents in my antiperspirants. So maybe it will grow on me.

There are so many kinds to try out there. Pretty sure Tarte Cosmetics carries one as well as Lush.

If you find one you adore, leave it below. Share the love!

Self Care is Not Selfish

One time I saw this saying on Tumblr, and it was so perfect for this topic. (If you are not familiar with Tumblr then bare with me.) This anon commented on a person’s blog, “you are mighty full of yourself, aren’t you?”
Rude anon, yeah sure. But this Tumblr’s response was puurrfect.
“Well no one else is going to do it.”
Insert smirk and half laugh as I imagine high-fiving this Tumblr person.
This has so much truth to it! I mean seriously, no one is going to take care of you the way that  you can (and should) take care of you. Only you can take a bubble bath with your favorite bath bomb. Only you know how awesome your toes look with your favorite color nail polish. Only you know how awesome you feel after accomplishing something you have been working towards, like running or a homework assignment, or whatever it is.
In our demanding world, most of the time the last person we take care of is ourselves. Give give give, clean, work for other people, cook dinner, chase our family members around until they are ready to go wherever is on the calendar for the night. I did this for two years before I totally hit bottom.
I was an emotional pile of goo.
Chances are if you  continued reading to this point, you are close to where I was.
I have learned how to protect my “me” time and make sure I’m taking care of myself. I found a few things that make a HUGE difference for me, maybe they will help you too.

  • The #1 thing I did for myself was spend more time with God. The man upstairs has an amazing way of calming your soul and helping you feel peace. I know this time has made a huge difference for my anxiety and my fears. I no longer fear the stress of the day ahead. I try to start my morning with this. Sometimes it can be hard if the house is awake and everyone is bustling around, but I try to find a quiet spot and really focus on connecting with him. (Looking for helpful tools? Check this out: )
  • If you are like me you have a planner where it’s all written out. If it’s not on the schedule it is not getting done. Even if my plan doesn’t go how I planned 85% of the time, it helps me keep organized. It’s how I plan my blog, my work outs, our meals, and keep track of homework and appointments. It is also how I schedule my “me” time. I schedule pedicures or time for whatever I want to do. I make sure I set time aside for me. There is a catch to this though, if you schedule it stick to it. Protect that time and don’t just give it up if something else comes along. If you have tombs this time, reschedule.
  • I had a friend give me awesome advice a few days ago. She said, “No is a complete sentence. It doesn’t require explanation.” Let that sink in for a minute. You do not have to explain your “no.” You do not have to feel guilty for using it. If you are out of energy and a friend asks you to go somewhere you don’t want to go, say no. If you don’t want to make dinner, say no. If you think something is taking way too much of your time, say no. You are Wonder Woman, but she rests too.
  • Create healthy habits. For me, this was making sure I exercised regularly and shaved my legs. (Yes, I have commitment issues with my razor) I always feel good after I do those things, even if I don’t feel like doing them at first.
  • I also try to eat healthier. I don’t count calories necessarily or watch the scale super closely. I simply replace my chocolate for carrots most of the time. When I am eating better and drinking more water I feel much better. I am ready to accomplish more and my mood is lifted. Maybe for you this is cutting out the fast food lunches and trying to pack from home more often. Or switching an energy drink for a green tea.
Try these out. Leave a comment below if you found something that works for you. You deserve “me” time. You can’t take care of everyone else if you haven’t cared for yourself.