RaceRagz and Resolutions!!

Monday, December 30, 2013

With the Holidays here, I thought it would be best to give something away to my readers. I thought this year, it would be best to go out with a BANG! I have given away race tickets, socks, and a bunch more but thought I would save this for last.

First I will start off with a review of the product I will be giving away. What is this that I am giving away? I know you are asking yourself as I type this. That is what makes this so fun. It is like a kid on Christmas day. Waiting on Santa to stop by to bring presents.  Well, as you know, I love clothes. I love anything that I can wear to work out in. This is why, when I got the opportunity to review RaceRagz I jumped on it. When you think of RaceRagz, you think of a sweat rag or towels but it is far from that. MyRaceRagz.com is a website that allows you to create your own race gear. That is so correct. It takes shirts made with wicking material and allows you to design it your way.  So when I got the opportunity to create mine, I really went all out on it.  When doing my shirt, I chose a man’s shirt. (due to I knew it would fit me though weight-loss and I could wear it now as well) I had a hard time choosing between 3 separate sayings so I did what anyone else would do…. Put them all on it.  So the front of my shirt reads “Suck It Up Buttercup…. Running is cheaper than therapy” and on the back it says… “Drop it like a squat” Yep had to add a bit of sass to mine to show who I am.  I had lots of fun making this shirt and have even more fun wearing it. Where I work, I am now called TROUBLE because it.  I think the reason why a few of the guys their call me that is because they really don’t get it.  I wear this very often and I know you guys will like them as much as I have.  The shirts are kind of thin but it could be due to the kind of shirt I had to get. (The one I ordered was on back order so I had to switch shirts. I ordered the Endurance and they had to switch it to the Flex or I would have had to wait 2 more weeks. I was so excited to get this out to you guys, I decided to switch to the flex.) The flex is really soft and comfortable. Other than it being thin, I have no other complaints :)

This is the end of the year. It’s this time of year for a new start and to set goals for the next year. Due to this, like everyone else, I will set my goals for the 2014 year. This year I WILL go hard and go big as well.  I have already started, Have you?

Now it is time for a giveaway. Normally I do Rafflecopter but this time, I will do it a bit different. The ways to enter this giveaway are as follows.
1. Follow Aphalicious Bliss on Facebook then comment that you have- 1 entry
2. Follow Aphalicious on Instagram and Pinterest then leave a comment that you have done so –2 entries
3. Like RaceRagz on Fb and tell them AphaliciousBliss sent you then let me know you have- 1 entry
4. Follow Raceragz on twitter and comment below the name you are following under. -1 entry

5. Comment below your New Year’s Resolution and how you are planning on achieving it. – 3 entries
6. Follow my blog via email, blogger  and/or google+ comment below once finished.
7. Tweet daily and comment below the link and for each daily tweet, you will earn an extra entry per day :)

Each comment below will count as one entry with the exception of the Resolution comment and when you follow me on Instagram and Pinterest (you will get 1 entry per each you follow to make this a total of 2 entries) . Winners will be chosen on Jan 5th. Once winner is chosen you have till Jan 30th to order your shirt and have to be willing to follow specific instructions for it.  Good Luck everyone!!!

Nutrition! Do you really know about it or do you just think you do?

Tuesday, December 17, 2013

  A word everyone hears yet very few people know it and live up to it. There are TONS of products on the shelves these days that “claim” to be nutritious that are actually far from it.  Lots of companies think if they put the word NUTRITIOUS on the front of the package, people will actually believe it and buy it thinking it is. Unfortunately it works all too well. Honestly, in this day and age, that’s all it takes for someone to buy it. When in turn, it is still the unhealthy, bad for you product it was before they slapped the word healthy on it.  Some of these “Nutritious” products out to day will actually cause more harm to your body than it will good. That’s a shocker huh? Well, to be honest with you, it shouldn't be.
For example, if you go to the store and see a box of chips or cookies that says “FAT FREE” written in big bold letters, most people are going to be like oh wow this is healthy for me and grab it off the shelf and not even dare to look at the label. If you were to take a moment and read that said label, you would find that what they have taken away in “fat” they have added in other areas that are more harmful for your body. Like sugar or sodium for example.  So they may have claimed to have reduced the fat or made it fat free, they have jacked up the sugar or sweetener level to the point that your body isn’t going to know the difference between fat free and a nonfat free option of the product. It is still going to process it the same way. The sugar however, will raise your blood sugar which will raise your insulin levels and the sodium or salt; will actually make you retain water. This puts a strain on the body’s cardiovascular system.  This in turn actually makes this a more dangerous alternative for you.  
This is part of the problem these days and why the obesity rate is so high. We have become so lazy and gullible that we believe what we see and don’t look deeper and read the actual labels enough to know how much damage we are doing to ourselves.  We assume that just because the box or bag says it is nutritious and healthy, it is so. To be honest with you, we are dead wrong.  If people would actually take a moment of their time and turn the box around to look at the label, they will see how harmful this stuff really is and they would put it back and walk away.
 Here is a challenge for you. Go to your kitchen and get you some juice from your cabinet or fridge…..
We will wait……….
 Also make sure you grab some of that Capri sun or Sunny D you have in their as well…
 Got it?
 Now take a look at the front.  Has a nice easy on the eye look to it don’t it. It may also say 100% fruit juice but if you look, 99% of the labels it will tell you in small letters “from concentrate” or something like “10% real juice.”  
Now look down at the sugar content………
See what I am talking about now? Bet you really think twice before you give that to your kids or even put it in your own body. If people would take the time to practice this one little step, the obesity levels would drop dramatically. It will not happen though. People have given up quality for convenience and our bodies are paying the price.

Now for you parents. I know that this may upset a few of you but it is only because you know I am right. I know it would have upset me in the past only because I knew it was true but thought “I know what is best for my kids.”  I am a mother of 3 kids and I use to be one of these mothers who have done this so I have been guilty of this as well. It took me getting scared into reality for me to change my ways. May it never happen to your family!  As I was saying, I am a mother of 3 wonderful kids and the last thing I want to do is harm my child or cause my child to be unhealthy. It’s every mother’s dream to have a healthy child. I know I would feel awful to know my child was sick and unhealthy because of something I did or was doing. When reality came to knocking on my door and hit me like a ton of bricks, that is what happened.  I became ill from knowing I was putting my kid’s health in danger. That is what you, as a parent, are doing to your children. Yes I am talking to the mom at the checkout isle at Wal-Mart with a buggy full of sodas, chips, frozen meals, ice cream and god forbid energy drinks for her 2 and 3 year old to have.  To be honest, I could NEVER see giving an energy drink or even a high caffeinated drink to a child. Let alone a small child who isn't even in school yet. HOLY SMOKES!!!!!  Parents are feeding their kids all this JUNK that is loaded with sugar, sodium, chemicals and other harmful things. If parents would really take the time to read the labels of foods they are giving to their kids these days, they will see how badly they are harming their children.

Yes I understand the whole, I am a busy parent and I work 2 jobs to put food on the table or we are always on the go and so busy that I don’t have time to cook for my kids.  Yet you have time to go to the club, or hang out with friends? Do you have a day that you aren't working? DO you have that 1-4 hours of alone time while the kids are taking a nap or at school? Or is that TV show or computer more important to you than feeding your kids healthy foods? I know I just probably made a few of you mad. I am saying this because I use to be that mom. I use to be the one that would feed my kids chicken nuggets and Capri Sun for dinner at night because I was too tired to cook. Or worse, I would get a frozen pizza and put it in the oven for my kids to eat. SO I am telling you this from my own mistakes.  If you were to take 1-4 hours out of your day off to prep, cook, and freeze or refrigerate healthy meals for the week and then just pop them in the oven or even the microwave the day you need it, you would notice a HUGE difference.  If you have a whole day off from work or other activities, that’s even better and leaves no room for excuses. This would give you the opportunity to get your kids involved in the kitchen and learning about healthy alternatives and how to eat healthier.  I have been guilty of this and now, my kids open up more to me and we have an even closer bond because you will learn a lot about your kids when you have them get involved in the kitchen.  For example, if pizza is your family’s thing, go to the store and get a pizza crust, sauce and toppings that everyone will enjoy.  Place all the ingredients out on the table and call the kids in. Have them help you put together the pizza they would like to see it done. Don’t be afraid to make a mess because the more fun you have, the bigger the mess will be.
Your kids are picky and don’t like veggies and will only eat junk food? Who’s the parent here and when did the kids start raising the adults? When did the child start determining what is healthy and what is not? Aren't they still in school or not in school yet? We as adults have lightened up on our kids lately. This has led to kids being disrespectful and more and more kids getting into trouble in schools and law enforcement. We as parents are so scared to be strict with our kids and make them try healthier options or teach them how to make better choices because we are scared of what society will say or what others will think.  I have been in Walmart and seen kids throw HUGE fits because they want pop tarts or cookies and the parent has said no and other adults will come bash the mother for not giving the child what they want. Or even worse than that, the mother caves in and gives it to them to prevent the loft stares. We have let our kids rule not only the home, the schools, and everywhere else; we have let them take over the kitchen as well. I don’t know about you guys but if my kids did half of the stuff that I have seen some of these kids do or even some of these narrow minded parents do, they would be doing chores or wall sits till they didn't do it anymore. I was told today by a trusted friend and my mentor, Joanna Broadbent, something I feel I need to share. It hit me that hard because I knew she was right. She said:
 “Keep in mind; your children learn what they see. The more you allow others to control your feelings, so will they. The more you tear yourself down, so will they!  Being a mother is what changed my mind set. Once it clicked that little eyes are always watching, it was a lot easier to make the change”
SO if you chose to make healthy choices, they will start to come around as well. If you chose to be racist and bitter, they will as well. If you are always in trouble with the law or always stuffing your face with fast food or other harmful things… you catch my drift. If you want your kids to become better people than you have become, now is the time to take hold of their future and start guiding them where you know they can thrive.  So why not start with something a little closer at home. If not just for them, but for you as well.

I have been honored to be able to try out a product recently that I, to be honest, was kind of skeptical about. I have tried other proteins and haven’t had much luck with them. So when I was introduced to FITMISS Delight, I decided to just give them a try. I thought “What’s the worst that could happen? I not like the flavor or it not work for me?” So I contacted one of the sales reps for it and she sent me over a bottle of vanilla chai tea protein. I am not going to lie to you, the first one I made, I spit out and put it on the shelf and didn't touch it for a week. The issue I had was one that I have found a few people having. Vanilla protein is just plain gross. SO after a week or so, I decided to give it another shot. This time, I was going to use almond milk instead of the water I had been using. This choice made a HUGE difference in the way it tasted. To me, at first, it tasted like stale vanilla. When I mixed it with the almond milk, it actually brought out the goodness in the protein and FITMISS Delight became my go to meal when I was on the go.  Don’t get me wrong, I have read lots of reviews about people trying it in different ways and loving it. Each person’s taste is different.  I have chosen to drink at least 1 FITMISS shake a day while at work. One day I may drink it plain, the next add some peanut butter to it. Either or, this has become a big part of my meal plan.
Since I started incorporating this into my diet, I have noticed a difference in the inches coming off my body. No, I am not saying it is all because of the FITMISS Delight, I am saying I feel it has played a big part in assisting me with losing the inches.  It has made it so I am not hungry as much during work which allows me to focus on more important things, like my job.  It not only has the protein in it that your body needs, it also has nutrients in it that you would find in veggies as well. It isn’t overly sweet like most protein I have tried and it has a balance overall of what your body needs. Would I recommend this product to others?  Yes, I would indeed. If you want to incorporate a protein in your diet or meal plan, make sure to read the label FIRST! Not all are alike and not all are good for you.

On the FITMISS website they have the following about their Delight Protein:

  • Delicious, Nutritious, Satisfying, and Gluten Free!*
  • High in Protein, quality calorie mix that helps you lose weight.*
  • Includes the newest weight-loss innovation Solathin® that helps with making you feel full faster.*
  • Includes essential vitamins & minerals to keep you healthy and energized.*
  • The Healthiest Meal of the Day.*
  • Eat a healthy snack between meals.*
  • Enjoy a healthy, balanced dinner with up to 5 ounces of protein (fish, poultry, or tofu).*
  • Don’t eat at least 3 hours before bedtime.*
  • Drink at least 8 glasses of water a day to maintain metabolism and flush toxins.*
  • Stay active with the FitMiss fitness program that’s right for you*

Keep tuned for an awesome Flash giveaway! Don’t forget to be active, work hard and make that fat cry. Most of all, don’t forget to hold the ones you love close and dear. Love you guys.

Post Race Color Me Rad!

Sunday, December 8, 2013

I know this post has been a long time coming but life has been kind of hectic lately. So here comes the post you all have been waiting for. My post-race review of the color me rad. Well, as most of you know, I have run a couple of 5k’s this year so I knew what I was going into. So we all came prepared this time around.  I stayed awake the night before so I could allow everyone to get a little bit more sleep than they did last time while I packed up extra clothes, sheets, and snacks. We ended up having to borrow a close friend of ours car because our cars transmission quit the day before the race.  It went out as I was going to work on Friday. We turned onto the road next to my job and 1-2 gear completely quit working. It gave us no warning at all. SO I was panicking all day at work because I was scared I wasn't able to make it. Our really close friend came through and we were able to get there. On the way there, it rained so I was really scared that the race was going to end up getting canceled. This is because of the fact that it was a bit cold. When we got there, as you all know I like to get to any race early so I can get pictures taken of the race course and of the decor before it got too crowded to get them.

Now that we have gotten there and I got my pictures taken, as you can see the picture of the beautiful sunrise and the good luck rainbow, we met up with my sister Jill and her friends.  My kids love their aunt Jill a lot so I couldn't think of anyone else I would rather run with than her. I don’t think my kids would have as much fun either if their aunt Jill and “Fancy Pants” wasn't there with us.  This race was the most special because we were celebrating my youngest daughter’s birthday. She was so happy that she couldn't stop smiling.  See, due to her birthday and when it falls, we never can seem to afford her a birthday party. (Her birthday is December 23rd) So we have to celebrate it early or later so she can have a special day. The hard thing is, no matter who we invite to her party, no one ever wants to come to her birthday. So that is why we chose to celebrate it at the Color Me Rad this year.  I really have to say thank you so much for the Color Me Rad team for making this the perfect birthday for her. They took pictures with her, and even had the racers sing Happy Birthday to her.  The whole way home, she wouldn't stop talking about it. So I have to say this to all of the Color Me Rad Crew.
“Thank you so very much for making my daughter the happiest little girl. You guys have made her birthday the best and made it so very special. I have never heard of anyone doing that before. So I have to say thank you so much again for it all”

Now for what you guys have come here to read, my race review. Other than it being misty and cold, I really liked the race.  It seemed to be a little longer than the race I ran a month before which was good because it gave me and Jill more time to have more fun.  The only thing I didn't like about this race was that it was cold and misting so It made the liquid color much colder than I thought it would be. We all got sick and are still sick. It was nothing the race officials could do about it; it was just the stupid Texas weather.  I loved how during the color stations, they aimed to keep the powder out of your face.  (Wish I could say the same about down the shirt. I got powder down my shirt I don’t know how many times lol) I honestly can say it looked like I had fallen backwards on a pile of blueberries for a week. Not to complain because I honestly loved the race. I was able to run a lot more of it as well than I had before. So all the training I have been doing is finally paying off. If you have ever thought about doing a color run before, even if you have to walk it, I would really recommend this race to you.  Not all of the color is powder. There were 2 separate stations, green and orange, that where liquid color.  Me and Jill made sure during these color stations to lift up our capes and “FLY” through the stations making it one awesome design on them.  We chose to do capes because you never really see superhero’s in a race. You always see tutus and me and Jill felt those were majorly overplayed. We wanted to be unique. So Jill came up with the idea of capes. Honestly, I think it was one of the best decisions we made.  We got lots of complements on our choice of costume.  Lots asked if they could use that idea for their next races. We would be honored to be honest.   

I love the fact that the staff made it fun even before their race. The DJ was very energetic and kept the crowd going and up-beat.  Even though it was cold and damp, he was wearing shorts and dancing around the stage.  Made it a great experience and this was the first race that I didn't end up puking my guts off because of the paint. Partially because I knew what to expect and knew it wasn't a good idea to stand in the middle of the crowd.  I really recommend you doing this race. I would have to say that so far, this one was the most fun. Was it because I knew what not to do and what was the best option from the experience I have had in the past? Maybe that was it but because I knew what to expect and prepared, I had a lot more fun.  Don’t take my word on it though, register for a race near you and see for yourself. You will not be disappointed! Click here to visit the site!

Also their is an awesome deal going on on their website. EVERYTHING is 50% off! I am so in for this sale. I love buying awesome gear and to get a hoody for $15 or a shirt for $7.50? I am surprised their site hasn't crashed from an overwhelming rush of people wanting to get their gear at an amazing price? I don't know about you but I am heading over to get my kids some awesome rad stuff for their Christmas! Click the banner to take a look for yourself or Click Here!

Click here for your 50% off savings!

This review is from my own experience. In no way was I told I had to give a positive review. I was told I needed to give an honest review. Each person has their own experience and this review was mine. 

Pretty Muddy Wednesday!!

Wednesday, November 27, 2013

You have heard of Black Friday and Cyber Monday. Well, have you heard of Pretty Muddy Wednesday?
Well you have now! For today only, The hottest women's only mud run has one heck of a deal going on just for you! Here is the email I got from them this morning!

Today only, when you purchase $70 worth of Pretty Muddy merchandise at www.prettymuddyswag.com, your Pretty Muddy event entry is ON US (free!)! Give the gift of mud this year to a friend...or heck, to yourself! 
Simply log onto our merchandise site, make your purchase, and a Team Pretty Muddy member will be in touch to get you your free entry.  Please direct questions and concerns to info@prettymuddy.com
From Team Pretty Muddy to you, thanks for being such a great Pretty Mudder! Happy early Thanksgiving to you all!
Gobble Gobble,
-Team Pretty Muddy
I don't know about you but, I think this is the better of the 3 lol. No waiting in line or untrusted sites. Not here. Whats the worse that could happen? You get a free race ticket along with a bunch of swag? Sounds like a great deal to me :) So what are you waiting for, get shopping!

New rules on the Hot CHocolate Race!!

Thursday, November 21, 2013

As you have read before, I have a code for a free travel mug (DALMUG5) Well now, my code can only be used for the Dallas Texas race.  Don't let this deter you from signing up. Their are plenty of locations available for you to still sign up at. if you are looking to see if their is one in your area, follow this link and  feel free to sign up. You will not be disappointed. The race that my code is good for is for the Dallas Texas race happening on Feb. 8th .

Need a little bit of incentive to sign up? Well here is what you get at the end of your race!!!

And who doesn't like swag? I know I do. So here is what is in your goodie bag.

Still not convinced? Well how about signing up and running/walking this awesome race for a well known charity that helps children?

I know I am definitely sold on this one. The charity partner for the Hot Chocolate 5k/15k is... The Ronald McDonald House Charity. As you all know, I love t help any charity involving kids. Have I made your mind up yet? I hope I have. If you would like to sign up for the Dallas race on Feb. 8th 2014, use the code DALMUG5 to get your free travel mug. If the Dallas race isn't for you, then you can take a look here a find one nearest you. :)

Confessions of a recovering food adict!

Wednesday, November 20, 2013

Hello, my name is Angela and I am a recovering addict.  I have always had a thing for food. It was there for me when I was put down, hit, abused and worse.  The thing is though; food has never been my friend. It has actually made me hate myself over and over again to the point that self-consciously I find that I am not eating much. I have to force myself to eat or I honestly will not. I have found that I have actually begun to hate food just because of the pain and suffering I have gone through because of it. The added weight, the names I have been called because of it, ect. For the longest I have associated food with evil and despair that at times, I would even get sick at the thought of having to eat. This is really been my downfall in this fitness journey. I have tried to eat more so my body will start using the fat in my body but it has been a long hard road.  I don’t know how many times I have been calculating my food intake and wanted to scream because I have only eaten 800 calories or less.  Not from lack of trying. I could eat 8 meals in one day but then catch that I have only eaten 800 calories. I know you are probably wondering how that is possible. See I love spinach leaves and I love eating salad. I can really eat salad all day if I was given the opportunity. The bad part about this is that Spinach leaves salad, doesn’t have much calorie wise.  So this in turn has been my ongoing struggle. I am not one of those people who likes to pig out on junk food or stuff like that. I actually don't really like junk food that much. My guilty pleasures are guacamole hummus and fresh fruits. It is the amount I eat that have me in trouble. It is why my body is in starvation mode so often. (a woman needs to eat no less than 1200 calories a day)

To add to the addictions I have one that you may say is kind of a funny one.  It is one that I see no end to and don’t wish for it to stop. Yes it is one of those kinds of addictions. No it isn’t drugs or anything like that. It is a big more, snug than that.  Before I go into this addiction, I want to say it isn’t something to be concerned about and it is one of those that I can bet at least 1 out of 5 runners and fitness lovers have as well but don’t want to admit it. I am addicted to socks. Yes you really did read that right. I am addicted to socks. Not regular white ones though. I am addicted to the unique, crazy, wacky kind of socks.  The crazier the socks are the better. I love toe socks and compression socks the most. The ones with the words, stripes, dots, I love them all!! I really can’t get enough of them. I honestly can’t afford much of them but when I do get the opportunity to get socks, I jump at it.

With the holidays coming up, I told my husband that socks, vita packs (vitamins to help me get healthier and help assist my body to do what it needs to do) work out apparel, and anything to assist me to reach my goal to lose 25 inches from my stomach and drop down to single digit jeans by November of 2014. With this being said, if you guys know anything that you think could help or that I may like or you want to see me try, feel free to message me and I will see what I can do.  What are your addictions, what would you like to see me try and review on here and what are some things that you would like to see as a special for you this holiday season?

Stay tuned for an awesome race recap and sleeve review!

Goal above all Goals!!!!

Wednesday, November 6, 2013

I have really done it again. I have been on my fitness journey for 11 months and after stepping on the scale and reeling out the tape, I wanted to die. I have lost weight and I am very proud of the little I have accomplished but to me, I haven’t done enough. I have struggled on my meal planning, on my workouts and stress has been a daily part of my life.  It is kind of understandable for me not is losing even close to what I want to lose. Please do not get me wrong, I am not excusing myself by any means. I know where I have lacked and failed in. I do tell you this here and now with all of you reading, I will not put up with it anymore.  From January, when this all started, I have lost 16 pounds and 18 inches from my stomach, 6 inches from my hips, and 10 from my waist. That is a very good accomplishment but for me, that isn’t enough.

So today I have sat down and decided to set a big goal and focus on it. It isn’t one of these little ones like I will lose 5 pounds in 2 weeks. This goal is far bigger than that.  This goal is a long term yet short term all rolled into one. I bet you are probably thinking how in the heck could it be a long term yet short term goal and how big is this goal really? Well, I will tell you this much. It is the biggest goal I have ever set and probably will ever set when it comes to fitness.  So here it goes, My big goal and to show you how determined I am going to have to be to accomplish it. My goal is set by November of 2014, I will not only be 100 pounds lighter but I will be in single digit Jeans.

Yeah you read that right! I told you it was going to be a monster of a goal that I have set. No small goals in between. I am going “balls to the wall” this time. I can celebrate once I cross that finish line!  If you would like to join me in this challenge, I would love the company. If not, helping me by keeping me accountable would do the trick just as good for me.  Here is to day 2 of my new goal. Let’s jam it out with a few of my favorite jams! 

This is part of my workout mix. Hope you love it! I have to run and finish my workout and get ready for my new job! More details on that coming very soon. Thank you all for all of your prayers and I look forward to getting this transformation going and gone! Eat right, Sleep well, sweat pink!

I got a Pocket of Sunshine!

Friday, October 18, 2013

What a weekend it has been. To add to it all, the weekend is nowhere near over. Honestly, it hasn't been a good one. The bad part is, it seems to be one let down after another. Like I can't get out of this rut I am in and get a break. Even if it is just a little one, it would be a blessing. I know we all have been in these ruts before and we all will overcome them. Rather it is because you are doing everything you possibly can to lose weight and the scale and tape measure are seeming to be locked on 1 number.  Or you are hoping for a certain promotion or opportunity that always seems to pass you by. We all have been their and honestly, at times, it feels like we are always stuck in that one rut. When we finally get that little bit of an up and start moving again, we fall back down into a deeper rut that is worse than the one before. I honestly have been their. Lots of times, it feels like I am joining you in the exact same spot. I get discouraged because I try my hardest to lose weight and the numbers never seem to change much. That and a lot of stress that has been added to my life lately. To be honest, it really makes me feel like the light in the end of the tunnel doesn't want to be gotten. Like it is running away from me to make sure I never get to my dream or where I want to be.

When I get into this rut and feel that I have nowhere else to go but to give up and take what hell has been given to me till it eats me away, I sit back and take a deep breath and say the following from a song I have fallen in love with just because of the lyrics that follow.

I got a pocket, got a pocketful of sunshine
I got a love and I know that it's all mine, oh, oh
Do what you want, but you're never gonna break me
Sticks and stones are never gonna shake me, oh, oh
I got a pocket, got a pocketful of sunshine
I got a love and I know that its all mine, oh, oh
Wish that you could, but you ain't gonna own me
Do anything you want, you can't slow me down, oh no

 The reason for the kids version is this is the one my children sing :)

This reminds me that no matter how hard and unfair life gets, their is always a little "Pocket of Sunshine" close by waiting to be found. You just have to close your eyes and open your heart to find it. This little "Pocket of Sunshine" you will find, is the love you have for yourself. It is a very hard lesson to learn that in the end, their is no one but you. Now before you get all mad and close this post, please read why I say this.  When I mean that in the end, it is only you who can make you truly happy. Others can assist but if you aren't happy with yourself then you always find yourself back in the same hurtful place as you where before. Please don't get me wrong, I struggle with this all the time. I have had years of being made to feel like I would never amount to much and have always been made to feel bad about myself. As most of my really close friends and readers have learned about me is to this day, I am still made to feel inferior to others. I get this from my In Laws and other family members. I have had dreams and plans that have seem to get put down and shattered at every turn till I have had to come to the reality that in the end, it's only me. I have spent so long believing what others say about me that I have lost myself. Lost what makes me happy and lost sight of what my dreams are. Only recently have I started to figure out that I am not what everyone says I am.

Yes I still fall back into the rut where I feel like I will not amount to much but then I see my children's faces. This is my "Pocket of Sunshine", what makes me happy. Seeing that no matter what anyone says to me or tries to crush who I am inside, their are 3 wonderful souls who love me for me. Not for what I look like or how little I have accomplished in life. They love me for me and they are, by far, my greatest accomplishment. If you don't remember anything else about this blog post, please remember that you are never truly alone. Someone has been in your shoes and walked the same path you have. Maybe not at the same time or place, but their is always someone who has walked those rough miles like you have. Some may have thought to take "the easy way out" while some have walked it and finally found that light at the end of the tunnel and found that courage to lift their head up high. To finally feel that sun on their face and feel the warmth of accomplishment and self love. Once you find that, you will notice things aren't as bad as they seem. You will finally have your own "Pocket of Sunshine"

I was honored and surprised to be nominated for the sunshine award by my very own mentor and friend Joanna Broadbent from Sports Bras and Sippy Cups!   The award is circulated to those bloggers to let them know that their posts brighten your day. I honestly wasn't expecting it and to be honest, I never really thought I could bring a bit of sunshine to someone before. Since I got the nomination, I have noticed more and more people telling me how empowering and inspirational some of my posts are. I am honored to be able to pass on this sunshine award to fellow bloggers.

The Rules:
1.  Include award logo in a post or on your blog (I opted to do both)
2.  Link to the person who nominated you Joanna Broadbent from Sports Bras and Sippy Cups!
3.  Answer 10 questions about yourself that the person who niminated you asks.
4.  Nominate 10 bloggers to receive the award. (make sure to link your nominees to the post and comment on their blogs letting them know you have nominated them)

Joanna's questions for me are:

1. What made you start blogging? Back in January, I was told that I had to change the way I was living or I would end up following in my fathers footsteps. (He had a heart attack at 30 years old) I have 3 beautiful children and I want to be here for as long as I can. 

2. What is one of your favorite kid movies? I am stuck between 2 on this question so I am going to write about both lol. I really like Despicable Me and Brave. Both are really cute and they are just awesome.

3. If you could live in any State, where and why? This for me is another tough question because their are 2 types of places I have always dreamed of. One place is anywhere on ocean front. I have dreamed for the longest to work with marine animals and I have a strong passion for them. The second place is anywhere with a beautiful mountain view that is surrounded by woods. I have had dreams of waking up one morning and making some coffee then wrapping up in a warm blanket and with my blanket and coffee in a wooden porch swing overlooking a snow covered mountain  and watching the forest animals play in the snow. 

4. Do you prefer hot or cold weather? I honestly like them both. I love warm days with a nice breeze blowing and I like cold days wrapped up in a blanket in front of a fire. 

5. What is one of your favorite indulgent treats? Chocolate. I LOVE chocolate. It is one of those treats that is really hard to say no to. Which is part of the reason why I am very excited about doing the Hot Chocolate Race :) I get to run for Chocolate. What better treat is their? 

6. If you get a week’s vacation, all paid, where are you going?  I am going to say... Either Scotland or Ireland. I am Scottish and Bohemian and my husband is Irish so I would love to visit them and get to see where I have come from and my heritage.

7. Who has been your biggest life inspiration? My children are hands down my biggest life inspiration. They are what keep me going when I am ready to give up. 

8. Name one thing that terrifies you. My biggest fear that wakes me up in the middle of the night crying is the thought of something happening to my kids or me to where I can't be their for them. If I am not here to protect them, honestly who will?  They are my world and I will do anything to protect them. 

9.  Do you have any nicknames, if so, what are they? Yes, actually I have 2 nicknames. They are Aphrodite and Stormy. Very long story on how I got these two. It would take hours of reading to even skim the surface of both lol.

10. If you won the lottery and was to donate part of your winnings, who would you choose to donate to? I would have to say that is I won the Lottery, I would donate part of my winnings to the St. Jude's Hospital. I love children and when they are in pain, it hearts my heart real deep. SO I would gladly donate to them to help find cures to stop childhood diseases and Cancers. 

The blog's I nominate are:

My Questions are:
1. What is the most memorable thing you have ever done?
2. What has been one of the hardest things you have experienced in your health/ fitness?
3. If your life where a movie title, what would it be called?
4. If you could have anything for your birthday, what would you ask for?
5. If you were to get a call today from your dream job saying you where hired, where would you be working?
6. If you where to win the Lottery, what would be the first thing you spent it on?
7. If you could go to any time or place, where and why would you go?
8. If you could give yourself your own name or nickname, what would that name be?
9. What is your dream living place? 
10. If the world where to experience a natural disaster (god forbid) what kind do you think it would be and how do you think you would survive it?

These awards help me get to know my fellow blogger and allows me to show appreciation to those who inspire me. So this is an honor to pass on this award to 10 inspirational bloggers. Congratulations!

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