Monday, March 24, 2014


So it's been quite a while since I've written.  Seems like life just…happens.  Cliche, I know.  We have been very busy and good over here in Peel World.  Here are just a few tid-bits for you to chew on until my next update (hopefully not 5 months away!)

RYAN - Have I mentioned before he likes to run?  Well he does and he's getting good.  Like really good.  He ran a 50K in Sac a few weeks ago, and smashed it.  He placed 64th out of 1200 people.  In fact we barely made it into town to see him cross the finish line!  He is strong both mentally and physically, and I couldn't be more proud of him.  On top of all that running, he still finds time everyday to be a business owner, a husband, and most importantly a Daddy.  Love that man.

KEENAN - he was just here for spring break.  He was only here for 5 short days, and we enjoyed his company immensely.  He has grown, towering over me by far now.  And he is funny and kind.  We miss him when he isn't here, but always look forward to his return :) We will probably be planning a trip or two to visit him in St. Louis in the next year, before he graduations next summer (CRAZY!)

BRANSON - my 4 year old is growing like a weed.  He is tall and lean with lots of strength and attitude :) he and Noa both just recently started a school skills program and are both doing great.  Branson is so brilliant academically, sometimes it's hard for me to remember he is only 4.  He is swimming like a fish, and in love with all the AVENGERS.  I never thought I'd find myself being interested in Spiderman or Captain America, (Iron Man is a given, he's cute), but alas I am.

GENOA - my sweet, sweet girl is still sweet with a streak of sassy pants-ness.  The girl is independent in every sense of the word.  I love it and it makes me sad.  There are no more babies in the Peel house.  She is climbing, singing, dancing and yoga-ing everywhere she goes. And usually in her tutu and leg warmers that she picked out that morning.  She is really athletic, and I really need to get it together and put her in dance or gymnastics.  (GET IT TOGETHER MOM!)

ME - as usual I am chasing everyone else around trying to keep up.  And I couldn't be happier doing it. My main focus has been transitioning the whole family to our Paleo Friendly lifestyle.  Next month marks month 6 for Ryan and I being on it, and I will write a whole entry about our journey then, but I just love talking about it.  It has been such a positive thing in our lives, and we all feel (and look!) better.  I have a new blog that is dedicated mostly to Paleo/Primal recipes, so in case you love food pictures and posts and much as I do, check it out.

thats all for now!


Wednesday, November 27, 2013


Hello all my (11) followers!  Ha! Happy Thanksgiving Eve.  This post is about, you guessed it, FOOD.    30 days ago I read a book called The Paleo Solution by Robb Wolff (*cool side note, the author lives here in Reno).  It was life changing.  He pretty much challenged the reader to not take his word for it, and he had lots of funny scientific words to say about what we are eating, but to just give it a try for a set amount of time.  I didn't need much convincing after reading about all the CRAP we are putting in our bodies and what it does to us.  I am one of the lucky people that can eat grains and dairy with out feeling sick after.  But that isn't the case for many people I know.  So here is my public service announcement before I get into telling you about my (and Ryan's! and even a little bit of the kids!) journey on the Paleo "diet".  If you have stomach issues, chronic pain, diabetes or celiacs,  I highly urge you to give Paleo a try.  If not for a month, maybe 10 days?  What could it hurt???  OK.  I digress.

So we dove in.  I found a blog that actually gave a bite by bite instruction of a 30 day Paleo Challenge (you can check it out here ).  She gives recipes, grocery lists, and even daily work outs.  Since I have had a pretty good track record at the gym, and Ryan runs 1567 miles a week, we didn't do her work outs, but followed her recipes for the first 2 weeks, until we got the gist of it, then I ventured out and made my own menu (FUN.  I love menu planning).  The first couple of days were great, it felt so easy, and then came day 3.  I thought I was dying.  I was tired, grumpy, had a headache, lethargic.  It was my body detoxing from all the carbs/sugar/crap it was used to.  By day 4 I was back to feeling good again.  I noticed my work outs changing.  While cardio was becoming harder - I just felt heavier - my weight lifting was getting better. I also noticed that late afternoon nap time need was fading.  I had more energy, was sleeping better most nights, and felt less frazzled with the kids (!) throughout the day.  And, if I may toot my own horn for a moment, we survived Halloween AND B's birthday party with zero cheats.  Most importantly, my blood sugar crashes are gone.  Didn't have one all month.  Crazy considering when it used to happen, the remedy was CARBS CARBS CARBS.  Now with no carbs, I have no hypoglycemia issues.   Ryan had phenomenal results.  He lost all the weight he wanted, and more.  He has toned up, and his throat allergies are SO much better.  He looks and feels amazing.  The only down side I can think of, is 1) I miss cheese, and 2) making 3 meals a day and 2 snacks for 4 people every single day gets old.  Lucky for me, Ryan does a lot of bbqing and he helps with breakfast some days.  And, we went to Grateful Gardens a couple of times to have their Paleo bowls.  And our wonderful friends Steve and Emily were even kind enough to have us over for dinner one night, catering completely to our dietary demands.  So you  may ask, now what??? The challenge is over, will you stick with it?  The answer is YES.  Absolutely.  Though we will also enjoy our selves on special occasions (Hello, Thanksgiving buffet tomorrow night!), we are committed to this lifestyle.  We have tried every "diet" under the sun.  This one just happens to work for us.  We've also cut back on how much processed food our kids get.  There are a lot more fruits and veggies being eaten in the Peel house. Here is my before and after pics.  I lost 7 lbs in 30 days, and am starting to see definition in my muscles.  Gotta admit, it's kind of daunting putting my post baby/2 c-sections body out on the world wide web.  The pics on the left are the post challenge.  Not a huge difference, but I'll take it :)

Wednesday, October 30, 2013


In early September we took a big trip to Southern California.  We did Disneyland, and then visited family in LA and Ventura.  Disney was so awesome.  Ryan got us a room looking out at downtown Disney, which is always fun.  Live music, people watching from our balcony, and as a bonus for me, I could see the fireworks (no way the kids would make it in the park until 9).  The room also had bunk beds, which I'm pretty sure Ryan was most excited about.  Branson slept on top, even though I was worried the whole time he was going to fall off.  Genoa slept on the pull out trundle, which was her first time ever in a big girl bed.  As always, we stayed at the Grand California.  Good food (hello Disney Spaghetti!), amazing service in all aspects, and the best part is it's proximity to the parks.  We were able to walk back for "rest" time (no one napped).   The kids were so well behaved most of the time.  They enjoyed meeting their favorite characters, and they were both old enough to go on a plethora of rides.  The last time we went Noa was only 3 months old, and B was just barely 2.  If you ask them, meeting Jake and Mini Mouse was the best part.  Branson was dressed as Jake the day they got to meet him, and it was pretty amazing to see his face light up.  Noa loved all the characters, meeting and hugging them all, but Mini was her favorite.  It was a trip filled with sugar, Disney, and more sugar.  After that we headed into LA to visit my family.  My cousin was kind enough to host a lunch for us at his dads house.  It was pretty amazing to see my kids enjoy the zoo, the game room, and all the amazement I enjoyed as a kid.  After lunch we went to my aunts house.  She also hosted a beautiful spread of food, good company and laughs all around.  My children bonded with my cousins like I've never seen.  Marston and Cooper could both be nanny's if they ever need a job :)  It's always wonderful to see Mema and Aunt Kim.  They are so important in my life, and catching up is always a blast.  Adela made a beautiful dinner, with amazing food!  A few close family friends also were there, and it felt like  a reunion.  We were sad to leave.  Buuuut, we were STOKED to head to Ventura to see Ryan's sister and her fam.  We have missed them so much since they moved.  The kids were beyond excited to see their cousins.  They showed us the ropes, and I have to say, I love Ventura and can't wait to go back.  Main street is adorable, there is good food, and HELLO beach! They showed us where the girls go to school, and then we headed to the beach.  We finished with dinner at an awesome little Mexican joint that has the best Mole I've ever had.   My nieces have grown so much, and are so beautiful and sweet.  They definitely look like the belong in Southern Cali with their tans and bleach blond (natural!) hair  We missed them the second we left.  But as always, it was so good to be home.  7 days away from routine is a lot for our kids (and probably more so for me).

Enjoy the pictures :)

Monday, September 30, 2013


Here are some of our family pics taken by Jessi Lemay.  We decided to take them in Johnsville, were our cabin is this year.  I'm so glad we did.  They have a certain rawness that comes with that lifestyle, and Jessi captured it perfectly.

Check out her website.  She is pretty amazing.

Saturday, August 10, 2013


I'm kind of slacking on this blog thing, huh?  Long hiatus.  But we have been super busy.  I'll try to keep the recap short, and then show you a few pics :)

 We moved!  Yes.  After six months on the market, we sold our beautiful custom home in South West Reno.  And guess what, we couldn't be happier.  That place was A LOT OF WORK.  I just did not have the time or patience for all the upkeep, both inside and out.  Bottom line, I decided it was more important to be able to play with my kids than spend hours mopping.  So we are back to our little house in the northwest.  It's pretty amazing to be able to clean my whole house in about 3 hours.  Whew.  We did discover we have too much cr@p.  Like, 2 storage units worth of too much.  I see a garage sale in our future.

The kids are all doing amazing.  Keenan was here for the summer, just left last week.  He is 16, has his permit, and is a recluse.  Pretty typical for a teenage boy, I'd say.  Sleep all day and play all night (remember those days?  they are  far far away from me, ha!).  Branson is great.  He is almost 4, and I can't believe it.  He can hold an hour long debate, frustrate me to all ends, then tell me I look like a princess or that I'm "the best maker ever mom" and I melt into gooey nothing.  He is my child that tests all the limits, pushes all the buttons, and then snuggles it all away.  Noa, the little doll face, is our princess.  She is easy going, eats well, plays well, sleeps well.  But if she has an opinion about something, she is going to let you know.  Based on other Sagittariuses that I know (that's you I'm talking to, Chrissy Lamun!) she is right on par :) She is talking a ton, running and climbing everything, and is daddy's little girl.

Ryan is amazing, as always.  Working hard to allow our family to play hard.  He is by far the best father and partner I could have ever been lucky enough to snag.  It feels like in the last few years we kind of just fell into our groove together as a couple and as parents.  Almost always on the same page ;)

We did a little bit of traveling this year, with a few more trips coming up.  Our wonderful friends Nolan and Evelyn got married in Kauai  in early July.  Ryan and I got to go sans children, and it was my longest time away from them.  That was hard, but I gotta tell ya, it was so nice to actually hang out with adults!  I made amazing new friends from New York, got to connect with long time friends from home, and even got to talk to my husband over a nice meal that we both actually got to sit down and enjoy.  Our wonderful friends Graham and Simone also became Mr. & Mrs. Bartlett in a private ceremony in Kona.  Congrats to all you newly married couples!  Kauai is beautiful, but I think Maui is my favorite island.   The bug bites I got from this trip left marks still showing on my legs.  Crazy.  The other trip we took was to Vegas.  You ready for this ride?  We weren't.  We decided to take Keenan on a big kid trip, since he is usually stuck doing little kid things.  Ryan loves the Counting Crows, they were playing in Vegas, so we booked it!  The whole trip ended up being a disaster.  What should have been an hour long flight, ended up being an 8 hour flight, causing us to miss the Cirque show and dinner reservations we had Friday night.  Then, Saturday night, the concert was cancelled due to weather.  We did get to eat some awesome food, and do a little shopping (Ray Ban's all around!) which Vegas is always good for.  Needless to say we were ready to come home.  Ahead of us is a trip to the LA area next month.  We will be taking the kids to Disneyland for 3 days, then visiting family.  Ryan's sister recently moved to Ventura, so they will get to show us the ropes for a few days.  And we will sneak in a little time to see my Grandma, Aunt and cousins as well.  Immediately following that trip, we will spend a week at Walley's.  It's the trip we look forward to every year.  The food, the Candy Dance, hanging with Momo - it's always a favorite for us.  Not to mention we got married out there, and our daughter is named after the cute  little town :) Hopefully after that, if we can squeeze it in, Ryan and I will be heading back to Vegas for a music festival.  Mainly just to see our favorite band, The Killers.  Then of course, it is  the Holiday Season.  I'll be  turning 30 (just threw up a little bit in my mouth) and 90% of  the family will celebrate birthdays and anniversaries.  Busy, right?  Enjoy the pics!

Ryan and I at Nolan and Evelyn's reception

The fam getting ready to go up to Tahoe for the afternoon

Our want-to-be luggage to Kauai :)

The kids enjoying a little morning yoga with Simone

Right before the Counting Crows got canceled

Saturday, February 23, 2013


Not too much fancy stuff to report on.  Noa is growing like a weed.  She all of a sudden sprouted from wearing 6-9 month clothes to 12 months.  I cleaned out EVERYTHING they kids have outgrown and have donated it.  I don't know how I had so much stuff in this house.  And I still have too much.  Noa is also getting some teeth.  4 actually.  At once.  That's been fun.  Lots of low grade fevers, fussing, restless nights.  She is a trooper through it all though!  Very happy and mostly calm.  Still out eats everyone in the house.  She also started talking a little bit.  Some people have expressed a little concern about her lack of vocalization.  But not me.  She has an older brother that talks for her, so she doesn't need to.  But, she can tell you what a dog and cat say.  And hilariously, she can tell you what my mom's cat Hoover says; pffffft! (hissing sound).  She can say "O-wa!", for Laura, their babysitter and my savior. 

Branson is still 3.  The horrifically wonderful three's.  He's either happy, laughing, and loving, or he's the opposite.  He is dashingly handsome, and makes me laugh every day.  Nothing can make me feel better than one of his bear hugs.  Even though I have to beg for one sometimes.  He is confident (finally!) in brushing his teeth, getting dressed, and going potty by himself.  Those things were a battle for the longest time.  I was terrified that I would send him to Kindergarten one day and I would still be doing all those things for him, (funny, right?).  He likes to show Noa how things are done.  And two weeks ago he had a little surgery to fix his tongue tie.  Simple 15 minute procedure that was harder on me than anyone.  I sobbed like a baby when he went on his wagon ride to the OR.  Then he screamed like a banshee for 2 hours when he woke up.  But after that you would have never known he had surgery that morning.  He was up jumping on his bed and asking for Popsicles.  The only down side now is that he bites his tongue a lot, trying to get used to the placement of it.

Ryan is still running.  Running running running.  It's time consuming, but so good for him.  I don't know how he does it.  I can't even run a mile, and yet I somehow have this idea that anyone who runs less than a marathon is not a true runner and wimpy.  Did I mention I can't run a mile?  I blame my husband, who runs 2 marathons at once for that. 

Keenan will be here for spring break next month.  I hope we can do something fun with him.  We have been so busy trying to sell the house, and running Branson to and from swimming, and with Ryan's running.  But it seems when Keenan comes we all get a much welcomed break from the normal chaos of our lives.  I'm sure I will have lot's of stories to update you all with regarding him next month! 

I was going to upload a video, but apparently I need a youtube account.  While I figure that out, here are a few recent pics.