Easily, the best part about being pregnant was name shopping. It’s usually the second question I ask pregnant moms – right after, how are you feeling? Because, solidarity.
Anyways, there are so many wonderful stories behind the names that parents give their children and I love hearing them all! Sometimes, it is chosen very tactically, sometimes on a whim, other times, it’s chosen for them through family tradition. I have had at length conversations with my friends, both moms and not, about baby names. I love talking about them, pairing them with different middle and last names, and hearing all the stories of why one is chosen over another.
The story behind my name goes back to our German roots. My dad wanted to spell it Erika, but ultimately my mom won. My middle name, Jo, is actually my aunt’s first name.
So how and why did we choose Finn Ryan?
Being that it’s an obsession, David and I had already talked about baby names long before a baby was in the picture. We wanted something unique, but not completely off the wall. We also wanted something short and simple, because our last name is three syllables, we wanted the baby’s first name to just be one. One last criteria: it couldn’t end it the “ee” sound since Gregory also ends in it.
Finn was chosen because it fit all of those criteria. It’s also a strong name, and I’m a huge fan. We get asked if it had anything to do with David’s fishing obsession, but it really doesn’t! I don’t even make that connection unless I’m prompted to.
Ryan, Finn’s middle name, is the name of David’s cousin who passed a few years ago. David and Ryan were incredibly close, so we thought it was the perfect way to pay tribute to him. We tried to keep Finn’s name a secret from as many people as possible, but with the family connection, David spilled the beans to his family long before Finn arrived 🙂
As we start to think about baby number two – and no I’m not pregnant – the name game becomes a little more difficult. Now, not only does it have to fit all of our previous criteria, but it also has to jive well with Finn’s name! Am I overthinking this? Maybe. But it’s too fun not to!
I had another post scheduled and ready to go for today, but I thought it was appropriate to touch on some of the events that happened in our hometown this weekend.
Many of you know that we live in Charlottesville and have proudly made it home. David and his family grew up here, and he is a proud Charlottesvillian. I moved here permanently three years ago and I fell in love with this town almost as much as I fell in love with the man I met here.
I won’t get political. I doubt that will solve any of the world’s problems. However, I will say that Charlottesville is a truly lovely place. The people here are kind and friendly, they are proud of their town and the culture that is deeply engrained in it. I am looking forward to buying a piece of land and raising my family here. This town has so much to offer to so many people.
If you’ve never been, you should consider visiting. We have so much history – the homes of Thomas Jefferson, James Madison and James Monroe are here. The University of Virginia is breathtakingly beautiful, the food scene is tremendous, and there is a new winery/brewery/cidery that pops up almost weekly.
It’s strange to see this little town at the center of the universe right now. I am still working through my feelings on all of this, and frankly, I’m grateful that Finn is still too young to question what is going on.
However, if he were to ask me one day about what happened here this weekend, I will tell him this – hate only spurs more hate. Be kind to people. Stand up for the underdog. Be smart in your decisions and do not let the actions of one determine your reaction. Smile more, hold the door open for strangers, and let the small things slide off of your shoulders. You will not like everyone that you cross paths with, but you must try to understand everyone. We all have a story and a history, so instead of hating someone for being or believing differently, try to listen to what they have to offer. We all have the ability to learn from one another.
Okay, onto other much more trivial things in our life 🙂
What I’m Watching
My friend, Morgan, introduced me to the show Wentworth. It takes place in an Australian women’s prison, but before you compare this to Orange is the New Black, think again. Wentworth is soooo good, dare I say the best show I’ve ever watched? I binged the entire series over the last month or two, and after gushing about it, David has started to watch it – and he is hooked! Even he thinks it’s one of the best shows he’s ever watched. You HAVE to check it out! It’s on Netflix, btw.
Finn is going to be 15 months old this Saturday! Can you believe it?! He is walking and talking and pointing. He is truly becoming a little toddler and it’s so fun to watch. Finn’s newest obsession are the geese that live at the pond behind our house. He points to them and calls them “mmm-birds”. (I’ve been Snapchatting/Instastorying these encounters regularly so be sure to follow!)
David and I were traveling for work last week, separately and at different times, so it was a pretty hectic time. I traveled to Norfolk to film a story about a 17 month old who had a heart transplant shortly after birth. Talk about heartbreaking! Fortunately she is doing wonderfully and several of my co-workers and I made a day of it. We stayed at The Founders Inn and enjoyed a nice dinner and a lot of girl talk before going to bed early. I needed a night away!
David left for DC on Thursday and came back on Saturday. We dropped the babe off with my in-laws and headed to Veritas Winery for Starry Nights. It ended up downpouring so we left early, but we had a nice date night together!
David’s 30th birthday is this Saturday! Stayed tuned for some celebratory posts!
Happy Monday! Long story short, I’ve been neglecting this blog out of pure depression – we lost another house that we put an offer in on, and I’m just feeling sad about it! I know – it wasn’t meant to be! But I was already decorating the rooms in this house and imagining our little family living inside of it. On top of that, life and Charlottesville has gone a little nuts lately, but more on that in tomorrow’s post. Today, we are online shopping!
Aerie Padded Bralette
I know I included the bralette in the last Things I’m Loving post, but I just bought this padded bralette and it’s the best! So comfy and currently buy one get one free! If you haven’t bought one yet, you’re missing out!
I’ve recently converted back to American Eagle jeans, and the quality and style made me question why I ever gave up on them. They are currently running a killer deal on all jeans/pants at AE, so run and grab a few!
Perhaps the most popular dress in fashion blogger history, I think I’m finally pulling the trigger on this one. It looks great on every body type and is ruched in all the right places! It can be dressed up and down. Definitely going to get my monies worth out of this one!
I’m sure you’ve heard the word “macros” recently – it’s the newest buzzword on all the health blogs. Well, I’m here to discuss them today, too. No, I’m no health experts. If I had to choose one food to live on the rest of my life it would be french fries – hands down. I prefer pasta and bread to fruits and veggies and I’d kill for chocolate cake.
However, a few months back, David came home from work and showed me a new app a co-worker had him download to start counting calories and macros. He and I have never really focused on what we eat. We live a fairly active lifestyle, but we had about 4-5 recipes that we’d circle through each week and basically cook to survive. But David came home excited to start tracking our macros – and because I’d been stuck with about 5 extra pounds of baby weight, I decided to give it a try, too.
Since the beginning of May, David has lost over 30 pounds, and I’ve lost about 9. How? By counting our macros, and adding a little more exercise into our daily routine.
What Are Macros?
Macros, or macronutrients, are molecules that our bodies use to create energy. Typically, these are found in fats, proteins and carbs. There are varying amounts of calories per gram for protein, fats and carbs.
Proteins are essential for the body to build and maintain muscle. Protein is a key element in your macronutrient intake, but overeating protein will not magically make your body bigger and bulkier. There is a healthy balance that needs to be at play.
Carbs, often thought of as the enemy in many diets, are essential for health, performance, and body composition. It’s vital to have carbs in your diet, because if there is an absence of them, the body will break down the protein and muscles you have to use as glucose. Carbs are fine – but just make sure to eat the right amount and don’t overdo it!
Lastly, fats. There is good fat and bad fat. Fat is an energy source and a backup fuel source and also helps with hormone production. Plus, fats have the most calories per gram out of all the macronutrients, so eating the right amount of the right type of fats can help you feel fuller, longer.
Macros vs. Calories
Like most girls, I was always aware of how many calories I was putting into my body, but it wasn’t until I was counting my macros that I realized I had been eating a lot of useless calories just to feel full. When I calculated my ideal calorie intake, my body only needs about 1360 calories a day to maintain my current weight. That shocked me at first! I could eat that much in one sitting!
Once I started measuring out my meals (yes, I use a measuring cup to make sure I’m getting 1 cup of chicken, etc.) I was shocked at how much I could still eat if I was getting the right stuff. There are even days where I leave calories on the table because I don’t feel hungry.
So How Much Do I Need?
Each body is different so it’s important to figure out what combination of protein, carbs and fat work for you. I started with a higher protein intake and my body was in pain. I felt sick to my stomach and bloated. When I ran the right calculations, I realized that my body actually needed more carbs and less proteins. Since then, I’ve been losing about a pound every two weeks and I feel energetic and full all the time!
I’m no expert, but from personal experience I have a little bit of advice if you decide to start counting macros:
Download the My Fitness Pal app. It’s an incredibly easy way to help count and manage your macros, plus it has a ton of other tools to help you with an ideal diet and exercise regiment.
I try to stay as active as possible, but I really wish I had more time to exercise. The more active you are, the more calories you will need. Be sure to take this into account when you are counting.
Of course I have cravings! And I totally have cheated. However, when I was craving fried food in about week two of this new lifestyle, I decided to get some chicken fingers and fries for my cheat meal. Big mistake! I was down for the count… for like 3 days afterwards. I realized it just wasn’t worth it anymore and, although I still have cravings, fried food just doesn’t even sound appealing after that fiasco.
I also have a soft spot for chocolate chip cookies, so I found The Complete Cookie – it has 16g of protein in it! And it’s delicious! Obviously, eating these daily isn’t the smartest move, but when I know I need a little cookie in my life, I move around my macros from the day to make sure I have room for one.
Don’t try to keep up with you husband/boyfriend/guy friend. David’s body allows for more caloric intake just because he is bigger than me, naturally. If I tried to eat as much as him – portion size and everything – I wouldn’t be doing myself any favors. Your body is unique to itself, so treat it that way.
Meal plan! Every Sunday we buy a family pack of chicken breast and put it in the crockpot. Usually that gets us through the week. We can use the shredded chicken for countless recipes! Being prepared is the best way to keep yourself on track.
Good luck! Feel free to ask me any questions or leave a comment with you own experience counting macros. I’m really new at this whole thing, so I’m also open to any advice you may have.
I’m bringing back the Five Things I’m Loving series because a.) I do way too much online shopping and need to share what I find and b.) because I know you guys love them, too. I’m re-vamping it a bit, giving it a new feel. Instead of limiting my findings to five things, I’ve decided to live outside the boundaries and list as many things as I find! 😉 Plus, I think the whole “shop” button really looks nice and it’s a much easier way for y’all to actually shop.
BTW, I wanted to let you know that I earn a small commission from each sale that is generated through Simple & Inspired. Thanks for the support!
Zella Live In High Waist Leggings
I’ve mentioned these leggings on the blog before, but they came in the mail this weekend and they are even better than I’d imagined. They are usually $55 and on sale for $35, and still in stock in all sizes. Grab them before the sale ends this weekend!
I’ve been searching for high quality workout/leisure wear and Zella really knocks it out of the park. A lot of their stuff, including this fleece hoodie, is included in the #NSale, so I might be making another order (to David’s dismay) before it ends.
I recently bought my first bralette, and I haven’t taken it off since. Oh my goodness, I’m in heaven. I can’t speak for well-endowed women, but for us small-chested gals, there’s really no need to wear an underwire anymore. I’ve found the answer. Aerie has some really cute ones on sale, including this one, this one, and this one, that is super similar to mine. Oh, and did I mention they are all 40% off right now?
I never even shopped at A&F in high school, but here I am, shopping there now. But I can’t get over this bell sleeve top, the color, and the price! It’s currently on sale for $15! I love this lavender color, but it also comes in five other really adorable colors as well.
Currently in the market for a new pair of running shoes and this ones are minttt! See what I did there?! But seriously. I tried these on in the store the other day and they are so lightweight and yet sturdy. Might be pulling the trigger soon. Although, I always have a hard time getting light colored running shoes since they will stain so easily – so I may have to go with classic black.