ryan is HOME!

I am SO SO happy to report that Ryan is back home safe and sound! It was a long 120+ days without him, but we survived and we are so happy to have him home with us. Luke was beyond ready for his Dad to be home and I was beyond ready to have my partner home. We are so proud of him and the sacrifices he makes for his country. We love you, Ryan, and are so very proud of you!

Deployments suck in every way that you are thinking they would. But, seeing the pure joy and happiness in both my boy's faces when they were reunited was ALMOST worth all of the hard days we had throughout the deployment. 

I always order a shirt for Luke to wear when Ryan gets home and this year I used the Etsy shop, CharleyJo's Creations. She was a DREAM to work with. During deployments we are at no less than 6 addresses, trying to guess where we would be in time to get the package was rough work (a special thanks to my own personal postmaster, Lisa, we love you)! She was patient and understanding with me, which I was so very thankful for. She even used ABU (Ryan's uniform) fabric on the shirt, how genius is that? Her shop has so many cute things listed, I am sure you can find something perfect for your special occasion

I am going to be taking a few weeks away from semibalancedmama, to enjoy some much needed family time. I will be back just in time to start decking those halls, and icing those cookies! So, get your party hats on and get fired up for some Christmas fun!

I am also super excited about some things I have been working on for the new year. Stay tuned, I am just getting started ya'll! 


limm jump rope workout and giveaway!

With Ryan being gone for the past few months, there have been days when going to the gym is just not in the cards. We live super far from my gym, and honestly some days I would rather be a hermit. Now, that the weather has cooled down some, I love exercising in the backyard while Luke plays. A good HIIT (high intensity interval training) satisfies my daily need for a good sweat and burns a ton of calories! I have been using my new interval timer on my phone, and I love it! It's a great app, that even let's you use your own music while hearing the beep in the background, when its time to move on to the next exercise. 

I recently was given the opportunity to review a new workout item, the Limm Jump Rope. Now, if I am being honest, I will tell you that jump roping is not my thing! I was no double dutcher on the playground, I was more of a 4 Square type of girl, but since getting fit I have found that jump roping is so much fun. And oh yeah, it burns an insane amount of caloriesAccording to WebMD, "You'd have to run an eight-minute mile to work off more calories than you'd burn jumping rope." Amazing, right?!

Buy your Limm Jump rope here
I have had the jump rope for just over a month, and let me tell you, I am getting good (ok, 
light over reaction but I can go like 50 reps without getting stuck)! It was incredibly easy to adjust to my height, taking about 5 minutes total! I love the grip on the jump rope, it makes it virtually impossible to slip while in action. I also love that it comes with a PDF of different exercises and directions for using and readjusting the length. It is light enough to throw into the bottom of the stroller, or pack in my gym bag. The company also has a 100% guarantee, which let's the consumer know that they completely stand behind the product. 

 Since, I loved the jump rope so much, I wanted to give ya'll the chance to win one of your own! It is such a staple to have in your home, and I have been using mine at least once a week. Enter the giveaway below and try out one of my "go to" HIIT workouts below! 

a Rafflecopter giveaway

After you win my giveaway, you can try out this super quick (not so easy) jump rope workout with your NEW limm jump rope! 

Warm Up 

Jump Rope : 30 seconds 
Jumpin Jacks : 30 seconds 
High Knees : 30 seconds 
Jump Rope : 30 seconds 

Rest 1:00 

Jump Rope : 30 seconds
Mountain Climbers : 30 seconds
Forearm Plank : 30 seconds 
Crunches : 30 seconds 
Jump Rope : 30 seconds 

Rest 1:00 

Jump Rope : 30 seconds 
Push ups : 30 seconds
Tricep dips : 30 seconds
Jumo Rope : 30 seconds 

Rest: 1:00 

Repeat 3 times! 

Happy jumping,

**product was given to my free of charge for an honest and unbiased review** 

month in review

October was a whirlwind

October started with a girls trip to NYC. My best girlfriend, Cara, has always made a huge effort to come visit us (no matter where we live), and I try my hardest to get out to NYC to see her as often as possible. We also share a birthday, and since this year is the big 3-0, we always said we would do something this year. Not only did I get to see Cara, but I also got to see our other friends, Bethany (visiting from Philly) and Caitlin who also lives in NYC. It was such a fun weekend filled with lots of laughs, wine and good food. Cara and I took a pizza tour, and I highly recommend it if you are visiting NYC soon. We ended up being the only people on our tour, so it was A LOT of pizza and a lot of one on one attention, we loved it! I was even able to sneak in a run through Central Park the morning I left, it was such a great experience! I am so thankful I was able to do this trip. It was a great mental recharge! 

Ryan worked so hard with the girls to surprise me and make the weekend as easy as possible, since our anniversary was during the trip. We have been married 7 years! It is hard to believe and easy to believe, at the same time. We were babies when we married, so we have had to do a lot of growing up together. I can honestly say I would not have it any other way. Seeing our relationship mature and grow has been such a blessing to me, and I can not wait to see what we have done 50 years from now! 

I went to a few OSU games while I was home in OH. I'm a Buckeye through and through and any time I can get to a game is so exciting. I also get in some one on one time with Dad, which I completely cherish and love! It also gives Nonnie (my mom) extra time with Luke, which she loves! 

I was able to go to my sister in law's baby shower, which is always a treat, since we so often miss family events living so far away. She is a phenomenal mommy already, and I can't wait to meet their new addition! 

And oh yeah, I turned 30! It is a big number, and a number that I am super proud of. I have an amazing family, I have a few really great friends, I am in the best shape of my life, I love where we live, and so on and so on! Of course, I had a few moments of, "wow, how is this possible?" But, honestly I am content with this number. It would have been special to have Ryan here with me, but he always makes such an effort to make birthdays, that he misses, special for me! I had so much fun at all the family parties and was so thankful to spend the day with my family! It was technically in September, but one of the ways I celebrated my birth month was going to the Shania Twain concert. I have loved Shania for so long and had to take the opportunity to see her live for a second time. I love going to concerts with my mom, we danced the night away and had way too much fun! 

Check out my "new decade" post, I did a few weeks back. 

I had to share this picture, because of Luke in the background. He loved my birthday month, simply because every family gathering we went to he got cake. Here he is saying, "enough pictures, let's cut this thing!" 

And no, I wasn't pretending I was turning 25, this is my sweet sister in law, Katy's cake, mine is not pictured but was so good!

Luke loves firefighters lately, so his costume was a no brainer on my end. He had such a good time and I was a proud mommy hearing him say thank you to each and every person who handed him some treats. He is just so sweet!

I even got to dress up with my brother in law and go to my younger sister in law's Halloween party! It was fun to dress up and I was super happy that Tim, agreed to go with me! You are never too old for a good Halloween party, right? 

I love doing month in reviews, because it forces me to sit back and be thankful for the month. Yes, we had some rough days and yes Luke has seemed to hit the stage of EPIC meltdowns, but all in all it was a great month. We were surrounded by family, when we needed them the most, and for this I will be forever grateful.

Nonnie and Luke at the Circleville Pumpkin Show! 

We have an exciting month planned for November, with one homecoming that we are especially looking forward to. I officially registered for my first half marathon, Arizona Trail Vail Half Marathon. So, you may see some more running posts on here, as well as Instagram. I have worked really hard all year, so I am excited to knock this goal off the checklist. 

As always, thanks for supporting me and the blog! I love sharing my love, my food and my passions with you all! 

Happy November,