I'm not quite sure how it happened, but I've gained 17 pounds over a three-year period.  Now on my third scale, I've accepted the fact that it's probably not a problem with the scale. Nor is it something I ate, water weight or just a temporary phase.  Nope the weight has received permanent resident status.  The result an out of shape body and soul.

After some in-depth soul searching, a Google search, I landed on Cardio Barre. 

Ever notice that whenever someone either writes or talks about divorce there is always those vocal group of perfectionists letting all of us who are divorced know that we are, well, quitters? Opining that we divorcees like to take the easy way out in life, while they meanwhile do all the hard work by staying married.  

Never for one moment have I entertained the notion that I somehow took the easy way out by divorcing my first Husband.  FIVE reasons why Divorce is never the EASY choice:

Every New Years Day I make a resolution; THIS is THE YEAR I'm going to lose my extra 10 pounds! Only to find myself every New Years Eve still holding out hope that those ten pounds will magically disappear at the stroke of midnight! Then there's my 7 resolutions I make as a Wife, Mom and StepMom that bears repeating year after year.  Following them religiously makes my life as a Blended Wife and Mama a much happier one. 

1. Give your StepKids a break when they screw up from time to time. 

One of my favorite things to do around this time of year is browse through "Oprah's Favorite Things" List.  For many years, I've entertained the idea of doing one of my own.  So on that note, here is my first go around of sharing some of my Favorite Things.  A combination of favorite gifts I've received to favorite things that make our Family Holiday Breakfasts more fun and enjoyable.  

Brain Surgery Part 1:

You go through life making choices all day long. Lots of small ones and on occasion some really BIG ones -  like what to make for dinner.  Ok, I struggle with that one quite often, but honestly I'm talking the really important decisions; the ones we make for our children.  What school should I send my little angel to next fall?  When can they go on their first date? Should I get divorced? 

HersHisandOurs.com - Monday-Morning-Quarterback

As a divorced Mom, married to a Man with Kids, I've had the benefit(drama/pain in the ass) of most of my decisions second guessed and debated by the Monday Morning Quarterback - an Ex Spouse, their current Spouse, Ex Wives and their current spouse........ Then you answer the phone one afternoon and realize that none of those decisions really mattered. Whatever control you thought you had when it came to your kids was all just an illusion.

When we started our Blended Family, the kid's therapist recommended we do a baseline IQ test of our three youngest.  The reasoning?  Many times over the years she had witnessed teachers and administrators easily label kids if their square peg learning style didn't fit into a school's round whole approach.  Little to do with a kids intelligence level, more of a way to make a kid the problem when their teaching style wasn't working.

A few months back I was drawn into Fawn Weaver talking about her book Happy Wives ClubI remember thinking at the time that a Happy Wife - Happy Marriage is universal no matter the number attached to the front of your marriage. 

When I hit my 15th anniversary last week I decided like any good wife to crack open this book to reaffirm just what a Happy Wife I am and the The Happy Marriage Raylan and I share. 

Every word and sentiment seemed to resonate with me until  I was struck hard by the words from a Husband in a happy, long term marriage -  a sentiment shared with the author:

If you marry the right person - marriage isn't work. 

My third Mother's Day, my Ex Husband Dick was living with his girlfriend(now former wife) who he had bestowed upon her the title of MOM to our daughter.  I had unceremoniously been demoted to the Lisa (The Pesky Bio Mom he tolerated thanks to the legal system).  That particular Mother Day's fell on my Ex Husband's weekend. Which made me all the more adamant that I would get MY time with My daughter on that one Sunday in May if it killed me. 

I've-been-lucky-to-be-apart-of-raising-three-kids. One Bio - Two Step. Hers-His-And-Ours.

I was laser focused on proving to myself  - to my Ex Husband - to his Wife and anyone that would listen really that I was in fact THE MOM. What better way to do that than on the one day designed specifically for Mom's - Mother's Day! Showcase my Momness while the world is watching. 

When I said "I do" the first time around I relied on my trusty list. You know the list of logical - unemotional things I shared in common with my Ex. The list I thought guaranteed a good match in marriage.  Top of my list - same religion.  Growing up a Non-Mormon chick in a heavily populated Mormon state I was convinced a Mormon could never get someone like me.


What I never took into account was did he make me laugh?  Did he really get me? Mormon or not.