Wednesday, February 24, 2010

Wordless Wednesday

Tuesday, February 23, 2010

Another Cute Kid Contest

This time its not my contest, but my friend Christina from Atlanta has her daughter in Atlanta's cutest contest HERE ... if you guys could swing by and vote for her (#24) that would be great! The photographer hosting it is Laura Brett, a friend of mine :)

Saturday, February 20, 2010

Good morning Coffee!

I don't know about you guys, but I completely admit to needing a cup (or two) of coffee every morning. I don't know how I went the 9 months of pregnancy without it, but I did..somehow. However, I have spent some time researching the benefits of coffee and how it can actually help us. Here's what I found.

Research shows that coffee can lessen the risk of heart disease, Parkinson's Disease as well as gallstones. Coffee also is a powerful natural antioxidant. From a fitness standpoint, having a a cup of coffee before exercising can boost performance. It can help you feel more alert and for some reason is linked to longer endurance.

Now of course here is a limit. Coffee can cause dehydration, so its important to drink extra water if you are a coffee drinker. Its also important not to overdue it. 1-2 cups of coffee a day are fine, but when you are drinking an entire pot-- the coffee can actually be in your system up to 12 hours after you drink it. This is what happens when you have trouble settling down for the night.

So the bottom line is that go ahead and enjoy that cup of coffee, followed by a cup of water... I know I will!

Thursday, February 18, 2010

Photo Contest -- VOTES NEEDED!

The photo contest on my photography blog I was telling you all about is now up and running and needing votes :)


Power 90 X

So before we had Bella, Jerry and I would go to the gym together to workout most days of the week after work. It was a good bonding time together and we enjoyed it (ok well I did anyway, haha). Of course our schedule has completely changed since having a baby, change in work schedules for both of us and no longer having a gym membership. I am a little more dedicated to getting a workout in than Jer is, but I still admit to getting bored very easily from doing the same thing and I also lack motivation when I'm by myself and only have an hour or two kid-free a day.

This past week though, Jerry and I started doing the very popular home workout series-- P90X with Tony Horton. Its a 12 week subscribed program. You do it all at home. It is 7 days a week. Very hardcore! I am skeptical however of most home workouts because most of them are not challenging enough for me. Turbojam is one of the only home workouts I continue to use on any sort of regular basis.

We just completed week 1 yesterday. I am SORE!! I completely can recommend this workout so far. I will keep you guys posted on progress and results. Personally I am not looking to loose weight, but there are some areas I wouldn't mind toning up a bit. Jerry wants to loose about 20 pounds (that he gained when I was pregnant but then didn't loose it after she was born). So far so good! I will say the best thing about this is doing it with Jerry... and the fact that it is getting him to exercise consistently again. We've had to do it late at night after Bella goes to bed (around 8pm) so it's a little hard to do it that late at night but having someone to do it with really helps, and at least this way we are uninterrupted.

This is what the week included:

Friday: Chest/Back/Abs... 1 hour of pull-ups, push-ups and a really hard ab workout. By far the hardest day of the week. I was sore for like 4 days afterward, LOL!

Saturday: Plyometrics.. 1 hour. I am in very good cardiovascular shape, so I really liked this one :)

Sunday: Shoulders/Arms/Abs..1 hour. I also did 20 minutes of cardio on the elliptical.

Monday: Yoga.. this yoga worout is 90 minutes. A little long for my taste.

Tuesday: Legs/Back/Abs..1 hours. The ABS WORKOUT AGAIN?!! hahaha yes. And yes my abs still hurt, LOL.

Wednesday: Kenpo...1 hour. This is similar to Turbokick so I liked it a lot!

Thursday: Rest dat yahoo!!

In addition to this I am still teaching Turbokick once or twice/week.

So far its been a good change and I'll keep you all posted. So far, P90X is one of the best home workouts I've tried! You can find out more about it here.

Tuesday, February 16, 2010

Fresh Face Contest

I just wanted to let you guys all know about the contest running on my other blog :) Be sure to enter your child for a chance to win a free session! Entries can be submitted until Feb 18th at 5pm, voting begins February 20th an runs until February 24th. Whoever gets the most votes wins... so its up to my readers!!

Can't wait to see your entries!!

View more details HERE!

Friday, February 12, 2010

The perfect body

As a photographer, I use photoshop for my photo editing. Its essential in the biz. As a mother, I want my daughter to grow up confident in herself no matter what size she may be (although I want to help her learn to live a healthy lifestyle). I came across this video on you tube today about how far you can take photoshop to get the "perfect body". Pretty disturbing in many ways. Just a reminder out there for all of you that what you see on the cover of magazines is most likely NOT what these people look like in real life!

Tuesday, February 9, 2010

FREE Newborn Photos

Those that know me well know that I love sales! Since I'm having a big one myself this month I wanted to make sure and let you all know about it. Mandy Leonards Photography is offering complimentary newborn sessions if they are booked in the month of February. Newborns must be 14 days old or younger to be eligible. So... if you know someone that is currently pregnant or has a new baby-- send them my way! If you are the one who refers them and they book, you will also receive a $50 credit at your next session! :)

View details HERE!

Monday, February 8, 2010

Recipe Share: Hot Tamale Pie

Recipe Share: Easy Tamale Pie

I made this last night for the first time and it was a hit in our house! Super easy too :)

1 box of corn muffin mix (like Jiffy)
1 large onion, chopped
1 jalapeno, seesd removed and minced
3 garlic cloves, minced
1 tbsp cumin
1 15oz can black beans
1 14oz can fire roasted tomatoes
4 oz pepper jack cheese shredded (I used low fat)
3 cups of shredded chicken from rotisserie (saves time!!-- I only use white meat)
2 tbsp fresh cilantro, chopped

Preheat oven to 450. In a skillet, spray with nonstick olive oil spray. Add onion, jalapeno, garlic, cumin and cook about 5 minutes. Then add tomatoes, beans, chicken and simmer about 5 more minutes.

In seperate dish, mix corn muffin mix with 1 egg and 1/3c skim milk. Spray a baking dish and pour in chicken mixture. Top with corn muffin mix. Bake in oven until knife comes out clean, about 10-15 minutes.

Serves 4-6

Tuesday, February 2, 2010

The Great Nap Transition

Those of you with children will understand this post. The nap transition. Its tough, unpredictable and a pain the rear end. We are there. We've been there for like 2 months now... and its still a day by day thing.

Bella just turned 16 months a few days ago. She started her babyhood as a terrible sleeper. I hardly slept at all for the first 3 months of her life. I was convinced that I would never sleep again and it really held a toll on me. However, thankfully, Bella became a wonderful sleeper as she grew older. I will never claim any one thing did it because I truely believe that different things work for different families and that really in the end, the kid is the one that decides when he/she will sleep. I was consistent with nap times, wake up times and routine and maybe it helped, but who will really know?

So as we approached the 6 month mark Bella was on a wonderful 2 nap schedule. 2 naps a day, 2 hours each like clockwork plus 12-13 hours of nighttime sleep. Fabulous! She continued to do this every day until about 13 months or so. It has been since then that we have entered this transition time. Most people have told me that she is ready to go down to one nap. Well, I tell those people, yo utry keeping up a cranky 16 month old at 10:30 in the morning and tell me how much you enjoy it, haha! So we definitely play it by ear each day. Some days still she wants one nap. Some days she was two. Somedays the 2 naps are 2 hours. Somedays they are 45 minutes. I wish I knew when it would transition to one solid nap, but I don't. Eh, the life of a mother!

Anyway, just a little post to let all the mommas out there know that whatever they are going through in terms of sleep or routine issues with their little ones, they are normal. They are not bad parents. And somehow, someway we will all make it through and have happy healthy children. And when they are teenagers we will look back and laugh at the fact that they didn't want to nap now!

Thursday, January 28, 2010

Making the time

One thing that I have realized since having a baby 16 months ago is how much harder it is to have a consistent workout schedule. Now you are talking to someone who has always been very good with routine and consistency. The one thing that I always have been good at is keeping a schedule. Call it the type A personality if you want, but whatever it is -- it works for me! However, Isabella has changed that mindset a bit. She has her OWN schedule and she doesn't care if I want to workout, sleep till 9 or have some quiet time. It isn't about *me* anymore. We don't have a gym membership with a daycare (not in the budget) so its an ever evolving process for me to find the time to workout.

However, not exercising is NOT an option for me. As I have said in previous posts, its a part of my lifestyle, and its a stress relief for me. Its only an hour most days of the week. In reality, thats not that much time. You just have to make it. Its not the best time of the day ever, but since the holidays the time I do this to make sure it gets done is 6am. This is before Bella wakes up. I get it done before anyone else is awake and then I have my whole day ahead of me! It is hard to get out of bed most days-- but once I do and get it done , I feel GREAT. There are no excuses in terms of needing to run errands or being too hungry for dinner.

So the moral of the story is ... make the time. Make the time for whatever is important to you. Exercise may not be everyone's priority in life, and thats okay -- but I challenge you to make *some* time for it in your week.

Happy moving!

Long time no talk...

Hellooo everyone. It has been a very long time since I updated the blog! I do apologize for being scarce. Life has gotten ahead of me and been very busy lately. My photography business has been growing and keeping me very busy, which I am loving. I also have had some new changes in my schedule in the past few months which have made it more difficult to keep up with everyone on both of my blogs!

Anyway, I have had some recent requests for updated posts and recipes/tips so I am going to be setting aside some time to keep you all in the loop.

You can also always visit my recent photography work at: MANDY LEONARDS PHOTOGRAPHY

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