Category Archives: Your Body

My Labor and Delivery Story – What it is like to be Induced

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This video is about Labor and Delivery Story-Claire For my favorite pregnancy and baby items check out. http://www.livingsatisfiedfavorites.com I had planned on having a natural labor and delivery like my first birth, but due to my gestational diabetes I was induced at 39 weeks. I was on insulin for 2 weeks prior to my induction. I ended up needing an epidural during my delivery due to getting induced. Here is my story!

TOP Books for Pregnancy!

Top 3 Books to Read While Pregnant!

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Let’s talk about Labor/Delivery, breastfeeding, and vaccines! Find out my top 3 books that I read while I was pregnant and am going back to this time around!

 

Ina May’s Guide to Childbirth: http://amzn.to/2nixNaA
Nursing Mother’s Companion: http://amzn.to/2n05V8v
The Vaccine Book: http://amzn.to/2nirRyh
Power of a Praying Parent: http://amzn.to/2nirZxL
Power of a Praying Wife: http://amzn.to/2nOaqY3
Where to find more favorite books! http://www.livingsatisfiedfavorites.com

Surviving First Trimester – Three First Trimester Pregnancy Tips

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Here are my top 3 tips for surviving the first trimester.
Favorite baby products below ******* http://www.livingsatisfiedfavorites.com
Prenatal Vitamin: http://amzn.to/2l4oyZ3
Morning sickness vitamin: http://amzn.to/2lGnuxm
For leg cramps – Magnesium spray – http://amzn.to/2lLMa4z
Barf bags CUTE ONES! http://amzn.to/2kP14sg

* affiliate links listed to support the channel. Affiliate links cost the buyer nothing *

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Chicken Thighs with Carrot Fries

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It was sometime in the afternoon on a weekday. The baby was at home with my husband and I was on my way home from work. Tears were streaming down my face from lack of sleep, a stressful day at work, and the stress of knowing my child wouldn’t leave my side once I got home. As the tears began to turn into one big ugly cry I pulled into a deserted parking lot and it all came pouring out.

“I am just so tired, Lord. Why won’t this baby sleep? Where did the loving and peaceful relationship with my husband go? Why did you put so many dreams and ambitions in my heart only to let them sink to the bottom of this tear filled lake????”

There it was. The sentence that put everything else into perspective. Why did God place these dreams in my heart for me only to fail at trying to achieve them? That is when I realized that God did not push aside the dreams in my heart, but rather molded them into something so beautifully different. God did fulfill his promises to me, but I had to be open minded to see them.

On December 22, 2015 I gave birth to a beautiful healthy 7 lb 14 oz baby boy. That day, without my knowledge, God began to mold me into a mother and adjust my priorities to reflect this innocent baby’s needs. As I thought back on the birth of my son I realized my expectations didn’t reflect reality and was forced to change my priorities. In this season of the church we are celebrating Pentecost. The birth of the church. I am sure that the apostles did not expect to be filled with the Holy Spirit as it is depicted in Acts, but God gave them grace in that season to redirect their priorities and dreams. That is my challenge for you this season. Ask God where you need to redirect your priorities and dreams. My hope is that as a church we make our community and health a priority this season. Obtaining a healthy life style is about setting priorities. Whether letting the laundry sit a little longer while you cook a new recipe or choosing to play at the park with your kids rather than mowing the lawn. While both laundry and mowing your lawn may feel crucial in the moment ultimately by adjusting priorities such as these we can find that we are a bit happier and healthier.

I hope that the recipe included will help make at least one meal this week a little easier and encourage a healthy life style.

Chicken Thighs with Carrot Fries

Serves 6

Time: 30 minutesIMG_2161

Ingredients: 

  • 6 bone in/skin on- chicken thighs
  • 12 Carrots (medium-large)
  • 2 tsp Salt
  • 2 tsp thyme
  • 2 tsp garlic
  • 1/2 tsp cinnamon
  • 1/4 tsp cayenne
  • 1/2 tsp ginger
  • olive oil
  • Mixed greens/salad

Directions: 

Preheat oven to 350 degrees

Chicken: Rinse and pat dry your chicken thighs. Place on a greased baking sheet. Sprinkle with 1 tsp salt, 1 tsp thyme, 1 tsp garlic, 1/2 tsp cinnamon, 1/2 tsp ginger and 1-2 TBS olive oil

Carrots: peel carrots. Chop off the top and about 1/2 inch off of the bottom. Cut in half and begin to cut carrots into strips. Try to keep them as uniform as possible. Thin edges will burn quickly. Place all carrots into a large bowl and drizzle with 2-4 TBS olive oil, 1 tsp salt, 1 tsp thyme, 1 tsp garlic, 1/4 tsp cayenne. Lay carrots out onto a baking sheet.

Place both carrots and chicken into the oven and cook for 20 minutes.  After the 20 minutes have been completed, make sure the chicken is on the top rack. Turn the oven to broil at 500 degrees. Cook for 2-3 minutes or until the skin is crispy and browned. Remove chicken from oven and continue cooking the carrots until they begin to crisp/brown-about 3 minutes.

Enjoy your chicken and carrots with some fresh mixed greens.

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Redefining “woman”

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Today is International Women’s Day. I have never felt more like a woman today than ever before. My day started at 6 AM by breast feeding my three month old child. From there I ran some errands with him IMG_2036which included my last visit to the lactation specialist office. When I got home I continued to ponder the meaning of international women’s day. I thought about all of the women around the world who have come so far in their independence, and also about the women/societies that haven’t been so lucky. I feel that I have experienced one of the most primal examples of woman-hood within the past few months through becoming a parent. I wish I could say that this experience has made me feel whole as a woman, however a glance in the mirror at my postpartum body left me saddened by what I saw. My body is more saggy and full of stretch marks and cellulite than ever before. Since I have always thought of women to be beautiful, strong, and courageous it was difficult when I stared at the body in the mirror that didn’t fit those descriptions. Insecurity set in. Then I picked up my baby and went back to that same full length mirror. I looked at the body that had naturally delivered a healthy 7 lb 14 oz baby into this crazy world just 11 short weeks ago. Every stretch mark is a reminder of my sweet baby boy. Woman-hood is not defined by the shape and appearance of our curves, skin, hair, eyes, and nails. The word woman simply means a female human. We must determine the definition of the word by ourselves. No one can define who a woman is but us.

I hope that over the next days, months, and years I am able to transform my definition of what a woman is. I want to challenge myself to be strong and courageous and rework my idea of what is means to be beautiful. I hope this definition will grow and change with me. I hope to break free of the societal stereotypes that I assign to myself through my insecurities.

I challenge you to create your own definition of “woman”. Write it down where you can see it often. Challenge yourself to break your own molds and stomp out those insecurities that are screaming “YOU CAN’T BECAUSE YOUR ARE A WOMAN”. Woman is a gender not a disability or deficiency. Be brave. Be courageous. You are beautiful.

 

Living Satisfied

 

eating bread

Handling the Influx of Sugar

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Hello! It is that time of year again. A huge influx of sugar has come upon us. There are sweets continuously coming in at work, schools, parties, and even within your home. The question lies in not whether or not to partake, because we all know we will be partaking in these delicious sweets, but rather being disciplined in when and how much you eat.
Note: Obviously I would recommend limiting sugar as much as possible! We don’t NEED sugar and we all know it isn’t good for our bodies, BUT if you must partake here is what I recommend. 

Here are some quick tips for limiting sugar during this season.

1) Set a goal for yourself as far as how many sweets per week you will be consuming

I see most people eating sweets as if they will never see them again. They continue to grab just one more bite in fear that the goodness will all be gone. Allowing yourself sweets is OK. Just put a cap on it. I find that I eat more sweets when they have been unavailable to me. Therefore I always keep a little stash in my pantry, fridge, or freezer for those times when you just need something sweet. This way I know that “X” number of days I can partake in sweets. Limit how many sweets you will be consuming on a weekly basis.

2) Don’t say no to all sweets it just won’t happen. Choose wisely.

Try to focus on enjoying your favorite desserts and not just anything that is laying about. There are always going to be sweets lying around this time of the year, but wouldn’t you rather have your favorite item than that two-day old brownie that has been sitting in your office kitchen? If you need to indulge do it right. You will end up eating less of the item because it will satisfy that craving. Do your best to avoid the every day sweets and hold off for the good stuff. You will feel less guilty in the end and will end up with less sugar in your system.

3) Avoid artificial sugars, diet drinks, and anything labeled lite/diet/fat-free

Just because something is “sugar free” or “fat free” doesn’t mean it is any bit healthier! Items like these have a dark side and are filled with unnecessary artificial ingredients and added carbohydrates and sweeteners to help them taste better than they actually do.
I always vote for real food and that includes desserts. Opting for real sugar, minimally processed flours, and real fats like coconut oil and butter should be your first choice. Obviously all is best in moderation, but by eating foods that contain real ingredients you will be satiated much quicker! This leads to eating less. Foods filled with empty calories such as refined white flour, vegetable oil, and artificial sweeteners will leave you unsatisfied. Just think about those 100 calorie granola bars…one is just not enough. However eating an apple with 2 TBS of peanut butter will have you filled and ready for the next task with the same amount of calories!

4) Fill up on good food first!

Before you head off to the next party, event, or even work, grab a good healthy meal or snack. Filling up on real food will help keep those cravings at bay. Focus on vegetables cooked in a good fat like butter, olive oil, or coconut oil and seasoned well. Then grab a protein source. Once your tummy is filled head off to your event. Knowing that you have had a meal will help your mind keep those cravings at bay. It is just like the idea of never going grocery shopping when you are hungry. You will pick up items more strategically when your body has what it needs. :)

 

I hope these tips were helpful for you! Enjoy the holidays and enjoy your desserts. :)

For some yummy desserts click here

Living Satisfied

To my friends during my pregnancy: An open letter

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Dearest friend,
I’m sorry I have not placed you as a priority in the recent weeks/months. The reality is, I can hardly keep 1920405_10201752990210438_1884537530_nmyself as a priority at this time. Everything in my life changed the day I found out I was expecting my first child and I have been fighting to figure out how to balance it all ever since.

Please forgive me for not being as good of a friend to you during this time. You deserve the world and I would love nothing more than to run around town shopping and laughing with you, however most days the very thought of leaving the house sounds like running a marathon…and we all know I don’t run.

Friend, my body doesn’t feel good and it seems as though once one exhausting pregnancy symptom subsides another pops right up. My dishes are piling up, e-mails have not been checked, and I am doing my best just to shower daily. I hate that I can’t be there for you and it breaks my heart to miss important events in your life. Please know that even though I am not with you, I still think of you often and long for the days when we can watch a movie and eat pints of ice-cream (Hope you don’t mind a baby in the background of that).

I guess my main point is that I’m not sure how to manage myself during this season of life and unfortunately we both know even more will change once the baby comes. So remember dear friend you have not been forgotten. I may not ask for updates as often as I used to, but that doesn’t mean I don’t really want to hear them. Changes are happening everyday for the both of us so please keep me updated with everything going on, big or small. I want to know about it all! I may not be able to physically jump up and down with you, but rest assure I am excited for you and will always be praying for you and all your future endeavors.

I love you friend. Thank you for your understanding during this time.

 

 

Living Satisfied

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To My Husband During Pregnancy: An Open Letter

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Note: Be sure to check out my youtube page for pregnancy updates! Also Living Satisfied Favorites for some of my favorite items for the home, baby, food, etc…

 

Dearest Husband,

I can’t count the amount of things that you do right. You serve me daily and would drop anything to be by my side. During this season of our life things are changing quickly and unfortunately for the both of us my hormones are just about everywhere. I’ve quickly become uncomfortable, insecure about my body, and simply am not able to do tasks as I used to.
More than ever I hope that during this time you and I can change and mold together and that our communication can grow stronger. During this season I am having to learn how to ask for help and learn how to support you in different ways. My goal in this letter is to give a little insight into my needs at this time and I hope that you can share with me how I can better serve you as well. This letter’s intent is to ease your mind. As a man you are built to serve, problem solve, and support your family. As a woman I am built to be serve, submit, and support my husband. While I feel as though we have been doing a great job at this, it is time to mold these actions into our new life as a family of 3.
Here are 4 items that I feel are important. I hope that after reading these you can let me know how to best support you as well.
1) Speak my love language and often: This has never been so incredibly important. While you have IMG_2507done a great job of this while being my husband, I really need some extra love. I’m having a hard time keeping my spirits up and while my Bible and God are a great help, it is really appreciated when YOU show me love through my own love language. I know this isn’t always easy for you, but here are a few things you can do.
My love language: Words of affirmation and gifts
  • Text me often while you are away and tell me sweet things.
  • Leave notes for me even if it is via e-mail
  • Tell me I look good even though I haven’t showered in 3 days. :)
  • Purchase some small cheap gifts for me occasionally such as food, flowers, lotion, items for a bath, etc…
note: find your love language here! CLICK HERE
2) Help around the house: At our house we have a terribly long list of items that need to be fixed, remodeled, etc… while those are really important and need to get done I sometimes just need you to vacuum the floors, clean the toilet, or do the dishes. I hate that I am not able to keep up with the house as I used to for you, however there are some days that it is really hard to simply get out of bed or touch my toes. Let’s plan out a schedule of house fixes/remodels so that it isn’t too overwhelming for you. At the same time maybe we can break up the household chores or work on doing them together. I promise to communicate my expectations if you promise to let me know what is feasible and what is not.
3) Rub my back and feet: I know you don’t mind doing this occasionally, but more than ever it makes a huge difference to my tired back and feet. Not only is there strain on my body simply by carrying the baby, but I’m sleeping weird, walking weird, and can’t work out/stretch like I used to. Even a 5 minute massage before bed can make a huge difference for this ever-growing pregnant lady. Maybe we could even take turns? :)
4) Be patient: I truly can’t control all these emotions. I have cried over really small items quite a bit already. I give you permission to let me be sad, mad, and frustrated. I know this is a confusing thing for you as the husband. Your desire to want to help and fix what ever you can is admirable, but right now I just need to feel these emotions. For me, sometimes I just need you to sit and listen. The logical side of me knows how to troubleshoot the issue, but the emotional side just has the upper hand. Right now I just need to be able to feel these emotions without being judged.
Here are some things to do during the time I ask for supported emotional time.
  • All these emotions already embarrass me because I know they are illogical so if I ask to be alone let me. It isn’t that I don’t want you or need you, so if you can stay close by that would be nice. If I really start to cry sit beside me, hand me tissues, and just let me cry it out.
  • Try to do things that will ease my stress during times of tears or frustration like doing some laundry, making dinner, or any other chores. Running out for a treat never hurts either.
  • Don’t worry about fixing the problem right then and there. This maybe the hardest part for you as the husband because you are always the first to volunteer to try to make me feel better or punch someone who is mean to me. If I’m mad or frustrated give me space to cool down. Do the tasks that need to be done and just try to show me love through my love language.
Bonus tip…Pray: Pray for me and the baby often. Pray for us in your private time and out loud in front of us. During this time I don’t need a grand prayer just prayer in general. If you can’t think of what to say, you can always offer to read the Bible to me or part of a devotional.
I love you dearly and I hope these tips will help you navigate this stage of having an emotional pregnant wife.
You’re the best,
Your wife

Check out my pregnancy updates via youtube! Don’t forget to subscribe! https://www.youtube.com/channel/UC6fI0UGTSRW5kQSz_g2PfTg

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Pregnancy Affirmations: First Trimester

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Here is some affirmations I wrote during my 7th week of pregnancy. I hope some of these could help my IMG_2272readers during their first trimester! Writing out affirmations when I was feeling anxious really helped put things into perspective.

———————————

I am 7ish weeks along and full of anxiety. So much is passing through my mind on a daily basis and especially when I am alone. This first trimester is kicking my butt and it has been hard to see past the soda crackers and ginger/peppermint flavored everything.

In the midst of my anxiety I figured I should write out some affirmations for myself. Something that I could tell myself when I am alone and unsettled. I hope some of these affirmations speak to your heart as well.

 

  • I am made by God to make this baby.
  • God brought this into my life so I may be made whole.
  • I am stronger than I think I am.
  • My anxiety is nothing but excitement for the future.
  • In a few months I will be holding my first child.
  • Everything I am feeling is not scary, but new.
  • Women have gone through this for centuries.
  • You have an amazing support team that would do anything for you.
  • Don’t read into each feeling and emotion too much, your body is doing great.
  • The devil is not apart of this pregnancy and in the name of God has no power over you.
  • Though he/she may be but a small fruit in size, talk to him/her.
  • Think of all the amazing things that will happen in a few short months.
  • The first trimester is only 12  weeks and you WILL feel better than you do now.
  • Sickness is a sign that all is well with baby.

 

Thanks for listening!

Living Satisfied

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Coping with Anxiety

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I’m not entirely sure why I am posting this, but I opened my dashboard for Living Satisfied to write a draftIMG_0378 or two and I felt that how I cope with my anxiety could be helpful to some of my readers. People write what they know and post what is close to their heart. Dealing with anxiety is close to my heart and I want to write this post not only to motivate others, but to motivate myself.

Anxiety:

I have dealt with anxiety for as long as I can remember and it goes through phases. At times I feel I can conquer the world and other times it takes everything in me to leave the house to run an errand. Anxiety isn’t logical. It doesn’t have a rhythm and can strike at any moment. Anxiety has been a battle that greatly impacts my life and I have become quite good at hiding it in public. I have always felt the need to hide my anxiety because it seems so illogical to me. Why would going out to dinner with close friends bring me anxiety? Why would running out to the grocery store cause me to have a panic attack? I don’t have answers to these questions. It is hard to explain to others why I am hesitant on making plans so I slap on a happy face and either move forward or at times I simply cancel the plans.

At this point let me take a few moments of your time to give you some tips that work for me.

How I overcome:

Self talk: This one is self-explanatory. Sometimes it is best to encourage yourself. At times I just have to tell myself over and over again “You are ok”, “You are strong and courageous”, “God is right beside you”. These words really can work and if you can’t talk yourself into a peaceful place ask someone close to you to encourage you. Sometimes I just give my mom or husband a call or text and ask them for some encouraging words and prayers.

Identifying the Trigger: What about this situation makes you anxious? What can you control about this situation? What can’t you control? Are you being triggered by anything?

Seek help: Seek help through a counselor, family, or friend and talk through what you are feeling.

Find someone who would be able to support or pray for you spur of the moment when you are feeling anxious. For me this is my husband, mother, grandmother, or a close friend. It really varies depending on what I am feeling and what kind of support I am looking for.

Take a step back: Take deep breaths. I know this sounds simple, but sometimes a few deep breaths can help clear your mind and help you restart.

Cold water: You always see on different movies or T.V. shows when someone slaps their friend in the face to snap them back to reality…This is very similar. Sometimes a splash of cold water can help you restart. Sounds weird I know, but has helped me in the past.

Be comfortable with where you are at:

It is OK to feel anxious. At times my anxiety makes me feel that I am not trusting God and am not being a good enough Christian, but that is far from the truth! God knows how we feel and will walk with us through it all. I know that my God is beside me even when I feel I can’t move one more step forward and I know he has grace for me. I don’t have to be perfect and brave all of the time. I am allowed to feel different emotions, but I have to remember that I am in charge of these emotions. I can choose to be happy and excited for life, but I also have to remember it is ok to not be ok and sometimes crying is the best option.

Care for yourself: It is ok to take some time for yourself. If you feel the need to cancel or adjust plans be honest. People may not fully understand, but honesty can go a far way.

Stay in the Word and pray often. Seeking God through your anxiety is the best advice I can give. He understands where you are at and is there to walk through it with you. Allow Him to give you the strength and peace you need.

 

I hope these quick tips encouraged you in your journey.

 

 

Living Satisfied