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henry happened: January 2011

Sunday, January 30, 2011

Something to wear . . . Black & White Stripes

I am loving black & white stripes of late. GP is sporting them, which has inspired me to find fun ways to add them to my wardrobe (I've been knitting a scarf with fun B&W yarn for about 3 months now. Slow going!).

Plus, some of my favorite blogs have me thinking about how to use stripes at home. I think Caroline's room is in much need of an update, inspired by this Domino guest room.
 1. Domino's Mini Guide: Twin Beds (June/July 2008 issue) ~ 2. Just Jared ~ 3. Little Green Notebook ~ 4. Rue / Sketch42

Here are a few things on my "must have list." You can never have too many B&W boatneck shirts!

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Saturday, January 29, 2011

A New Skill . . . Does 'The Method' Work?

You gotta admit, GP has a pretty rockin’ physique going on these days (I will spare everyone a photo). She’s toned in an non-bulky yet non-anorexic kind of way. Like a dancer. A really tall one.

The tall part won’t be happening for me, but I would love to get that dancer-y look that her trainer (and business partner), Tracy Anderson, is known for. The prescription: work out every day, for 2 hours, doing a combo of dance cardio and toning.

Yikes. Who has 2 hours a day? GP talks about sticktoitivness here in her first post about Anderson. I admire that, I really do. But I repeat, who has 2 hours a day?

As a “stop & start” type of exerciser, I’ve attempted several of the Tracy Anderson Method DVDs and recently purchased her book. Doing Anderson’s exercises in addition to some time on the treadmill and cleaning up my diet, I’ve lost close to 50 pounds (47 of which I put on in pregnancy). So here’s my 2 cents on the Anderson Method for us mortals.

Dance Cardio

Image 1 Good luck! Seriously. This would be an awesome workout if I could manage to learn the routines. I think this is a pretty common problem for folks trying to follow along at home. I have some rhythm and I still felt like a total fool.

Plus you need a really big space (sorry, no special workout studio in my home), preferably with hard wood floors since I couldn’t go fast enough wearing tennis shoes on my carpet. So I ended up doing the routines in socks, which is probably why I ended up with MAJOR calf aches. I have a bad knee and it was hard to sticktoit it with all the bouncing.

For now, I’ll stick with doing Zumba classes at the gym. Still dance cardio, but WAY easier to follow.

Anderson also has a treadmill workout with lots of skipping that I haven’t tried (again, the knee). Has anyone else?

She has also a routine done on a mini trampoline and that looks uber fun.

Mat Workout

This I LOVE. I am not big on weight training and this is perfect as 3lbs is the max she uses. I’ve used both the Mat Workout and the Post Pregnancy DVDs, and they will kick your butt. I am always sore the next day in a weird, flu-like way (as Anderson describes it).

I love that the Post-Pregnancy DVD starts with abs and works them in a zillion different ways for a solid 20+ minutes. It makes me feel like the 2nd baby tummy droop might actually disappear one day!

On the downside, the DVDs need chapters so you can easily find the section you want (abs, legs, arms) and the warm ups and cool downs are not great. But if I have an hour while the baby is napping, this is perfect.

Tracy Anderson 30-Day Method Book

A pretty good bargain at only $15 (versus $30 for the DVDs). I can’t say much for most of the book – it seemed rather haphazard, even contradicting itself in places, which is so frustrating when you are trying to follow pretty complicated instructions.

I didn’t even bother reading the diet section. It didn’t say how many calories the menus were but it looked intense. No carbs. Lots of salad. Still breastfeeding, so no thanks.

But it comes with a DVD that is quite good. It includes three sets of exercises that you rotate through every 10 days. Plus 2 10-minute dance cardio routines that you don’t really “follow” per se, just bounce along to.

I’m looking for a partner to take the 30-day exercise challenge. Anyone interested?


This is new! Description from Anderson’s website:

“In the newly released Metamorphosis by Tracy, you will transform your body, defy your genetics, and create the body that you never thought possible.  Prepare to be challenged throughout this 90-day program that includes 9 discs of transforming muscular structure work, designed for your specific body types,  a cardio component, and a dynamic eating plan. Experience this total transformation through your own Metamorphosis!

Metamorphosis buyers are also eligible to extend their workouts with Metamorphosis Continuity. Starting 90 days after you place your order you’ll receive a set of Metamorphosis by Tracy muscular structure workouts automatically shipped to you.”

But it’s $90. Hmm, can I call it research?

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GOOP SNOOP . . . French Pharmacy or Walgreens?

Today’s GOOP dishes on GP’s favorite products from the French Pharmacy. They all look and sound delicious.This one especially for an all purpose body moisturizer.

Nuxe Huile Prodigeuse

I’ve been hunting around the website she recommended, LeGuideSante, but I can’t find an exact match and all the similar ones are out of stock. Bummer.
And when sanity returns, I’ll probably settle for this budget friendly version:

Neutrogena Body Oil

Body Oil
For those of us who don’t get to France very often (and have zero friends who do either) here are a few other favorites from the local Walgreens to leave us feeling equally pampered.


This stuff is a miracle. Perfect for chapped lips & elbows as well as baby bottoms.
Aquaphor Healing Ointment  Advanced Therapy, 14-Ounce Jars (Pack of 2)

Jergens Natural Glow

I spent a week in Mexico and came home with zero tan. This better help! Plus I love the smell.
Jergens Natural Glow Firming Medium Tanning Lotion,  7.5-Ounces (Pack of 3)
I splurged a bit on this one (though you can get a better bargain at Costco). Now that I’m approaching mid-30s (ouch) I’ve gotta start working on wrinkles. Plus 11 months of my 4am wake-up call (thanks Henry!) haven’t helped my dark circles.

Another splurge. But I’m still in the Olay family since I started using their moisturizer back when it was “Oil of Olay.” My market research on this one – asking the Walgreens Beauty Lady which product they sold the most of. And now I know why!
Our formula has our most concentrated amino-peptide complex and hydrates to lift, firm and micro-sculpt your look for younger-looking skin around the eyes, jawline and neck

Classics: ChapStick and Johnson’s Baby Oil

I have ChapSticks squirreled away everywhere. And Baby Oil is the best eye make-up remover – plus it’s great on cuticles.
Johnson's Baby Oil, Original, 20 fl oz
What products do you guys love?

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First Came Caroline . . .

And then 2 1/2 years later Henry happened . . . and my life turned upside down.

I left a six-figure, highly competitive, highly frenetic job to tackle the daily grind of school runs and dinner prep. After torturing myself with preschool playdates and nap schedules, my brain began to melt.

Don't get me wrong; I've never regretted my decision to stay with the little ones. They make me laugh every day. But this blog is dedicated to keeping creativity, curiosity and learning alive in the midst of crazy home life. I love learning from other strong, intelligent & successful women ~ they are my inspiration for creating a life filled with confidence, passion & authenticity.

I will be adding posts every week covering new things I'm obsessed with, curious about, or struggling with. 

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