Another Lazy Mom Cereal Story

benefits of cereal-week  3

Now this thing right here pictured above…EVERY SINGLE DAMN THING ON DA PLANET!


Over the past 2 weeks we have discussed (or at least I have and you’ve lurked about) the benefits of cereal & did some breakfast option comparisons. This week, I’m supposed to talk about the role of taste & nutrition. Yeah, ok. When I got this weeks discussion & prize pack, I was like “WHERE HAVE YOU BEEN ALL MY LIFE, LUVA?” I immediately poured Princess Cara’s box of cereal into it, placed last weeks bowls and spoons on a tray beside it, showed it to her and WHA-LA…”Fix your own damn breakfast, let me sleep a while longer” was born.


Now, when we get ready for school (camp), she puts on her outfit I laid out, brushes her own teeth, put her spay moisturizer in her hair and goes down to fix her own gosh darn breakfast. I get a whole extra 15-20 min in the morning (on work days) to pull myself together cause she can fix her own tasty & nutritious breakfast all by her lonesome.


WHEW CHILE PLEASE! Tsk Tsk Pooh Pooh me if you want. You KNOW that you want to be able to do the same thing. Time is money. Sleep is manna from heaven.


I get back some time, sleep AND…Did you know?

  • Cereal is a great breakfast option because it is the number one dietary source of many key nutrients including iron, zinc and folic acid. Frequent cereal eaters tend to have better nutrient intakes.
  • A typical breakfast contributes more than 30 percent of needed calcium, iron and B vitamins while delivering less than 20 percent of daily calories.
  • In addition, ready-to-eat cereal is the top source of whole grain in kids´ diets.

Big G is the only leading line of kids' cereals to contain at least 8 grams of whole grain (48 grams recommended daily) and a good source of both calcium and vitamin D in every serving. In addition, cereal is an inexpensive but nutrient-dense option. On average, a bowl of cereal with milk is approximately 50 cents per serving.


Well, now you do. I bet you want one too! The good people over at General Mills through MyBlogSpark had been kind enough to provide me with another prize pack to give away.


If you would like to get one of these lifesaving time & sleep restoring cereal dispensers then LEAVE A COMMENT HERE ON THIS BLOG as your entry. I will pick a winner on THURSDAY, JUNE 30th.


My “Season” Opener: Philadelphia Insurance Triathlon


My “Official” Triathlon of the season (it cracks me up when I say that) was yesterday’s Philadelphia Insurance Triathlon. I participated in the Sprint Distance event with two of my AKA Sorors (Nineteen69 & R.Pitts) – it was their first Triathlon event.


While I found out that I still have a LOT to work on to improve (even at this distance); while I didn’t finish in any stellar, earth shattering, let me go get some world class equipment times; while I realized that, despite my good game talk, ability to support & motivate others – I STILL have to overcome some bad mental self talk in my OWN head….I HAD AN ABSOLUTE BLAST!




I took Friday off to go up to Philly and hang with Nineteen69 for the day and do so pre-race prep. She hooked us up with a most awesome room at the Marriott Downtown, where it was like going to Cheers – everybody knew her name – and they treated us like royalty. Nineteen69 is the master of networking (and treating people right) with everyone in her purview at work and it showed.


We went out to lunch at Reading Market, did a little shoe shopping & then went to pick up our race packet. This was the first expo that I’ve been to that was outside (under a tent). I’ve been to some pretty huge expo’s but this one was kinda small but intimate…and it also meant that you had a better chance at winning prizes in some of the raffles…WHICH WE DID!!!!

lootwinner  DSC02102

We both won prize packs at the Toyota booth. Nineteen69 won a prize pack (Asics shoe bag, visor, sunscreen, headbands, googles etc) and I won a Tyr prize pack of a visor – matches my bike, don cha know – goggles & water bottle. WINNING!!!! We then sat at tables that they set up and made signs for her boys to carry and wave while we were suffering on the course.


We hung out for awhile and went back to the hotel. We had a great dinner at Magg.ian.no’s and back to the room for final preparations. Turns out that Nineteen69 did not get a chance to practice is her wetsuit as the last open water swim was cancelled due to thunderstorms. I didn’t think it was a good idea to just go to the race without getting in the water at least one time with the wetsuit on, so we went up to the hotel pool and gave it a whirl. LIFESAVING moment. After putting it on and frolicing in the pool for a while, Nineteen69 felt much better about her swim (ya know she didn’t know how to swim a little over 4 months ago – THINK ABOUT THAT – just snatched that excuse from ya, huh?) and that she would not drown with it on. GO TEAM DIVA!


We set up our transition bags and got in the bed…how much sleep was had? Who knows, but we were up at 4am & out the door by 5am (we had to go pick up her bike on my rack) and were at Transition Area by 6am.

              bodymarkinglisa bodymarking

We got our body marked, set up our transition area and then hung out with all the other participants – talking & socializing – while we waited for Transition to close & the swim to start. I ran into one woman from TriUnify (I’m totally bummed that I can’t remember her name) but it was great to see her and we finished the race pretty close to each other, hugging & grinning in our accomplishment. We both have swim work to do…but we got in & GOT OUT of the water.

        DSC02106   DSC02111


We took a prelim look at the swim start & water…and well, umm, er…my gag reflex kicked in. It was a “beach” entry. The water was very calm with little current, but there was this SCUM/FILM all out in the center of the course. Perhaps if I hurled in advance I wouldn’t do it in the water. I was SOOOOO blown. I kept going over it in my head, being grossed out and then I managed to get a grip telling myself that as a mother I had cleaned up and had on me WAAAAAYYYY worse than pond scum – I could handle this. I pushed it out of my head figuring that the first couple of waves would scoop up all the scum so no biggie. And by time I got in the water, there was no scum to be found.

DSC02103  DSC02104

.8K swim / 25.3K bike / 5K run
.5 mile swim / 15.7 mile bike / 3.1 mile run

SWIM: Has to be my worst performance to date. I did worse than my 1st Triathlon (Nation’s) which was twice as long as this swim (Olympic Distance). I thought I was calm, cool & collected but I got in that water and was…AFRAID. First thing in my head was “there are too many people” (when there actually were WAAAAYYY less than Nation’s) and when I couldn’t catch my breath, I started with “OMG, I can’t do this”. And then the tears. Then, remembering what so many trainers & other seasoned triathletes have said – “…by any stroke necessary.” Thus, I did the back stroke almost the entire way, busting a tear or two the whole time. I firmly believe that open water swim is 50% mental – a mind game of overcoming fear, doubt & uncertainty.I think with more open water swim practice I WILL get the mental toughness game down. When I finally got out of the water – I felt VICTORIOUS. Moving on.


BIKE: I felt fabulous. The difference from beasting through on a gifted mountain bike on my first tri to doing the course on Dominique Diva Dawes was phenomenal. Was I lightening fast? No, but I was actually able to say “on the left” several times as I blew past A FEW racers. I also got several attaboys admiring my bike plate (2Fast4U). I felt awesome.


RUN: I felt okay, way better than my 1st on this run. I’ve been doing a couple of bricks this time so I knew what to expect (more or less) and was able to maintain my just above frozen molasses pace of 12:30. I ran most of it with a 74 year old man who came up behind me, saying that I looked like I had a good pace he could keep up with (KILL ME NOW) and we talked & I sang cadence and we brought it in together.




Congratulations LISA STEPTOE!
Here are your results for the 2011 Philadelphia Insurance Triathlon:




I wasn’t last overall or last in my age group. WINNING. My goal by the end of the season is to have knocked off 30+min off my total time to complete a Sprint in 2 hours or less.


I think I can. I KNOW I can.


I was worried for my tri-neophyte, Nineteen69, as I realized when I went back into Transition to get my gear that she had not come in from the Bike part yet & had not started the run. I stood there looking at her gear and I called out to her husband who was waiting near the Bike In area and she hadn’t been seen yet. I waited a few more moments and here she comes. NOT A HAPPY CAMPER. Team Pitts told me that it prolly was NOT a good idea to snap pictures of her while Transitioning. AGREED. She was quiet and had a look on her face of sheer determination. I followed her out of transition, handed off my backpack & stuff to her husband and rode off on my bike to ride along side her while she finished up the race with the 3 mile run.


I simply could NOT let her finish the race alone (although the look about her was she was gonna finish come hell or high water). They had packed up the water station and almost the turn around point but the race official waited for her and we took it in together. I was just a ball of tears when Nineteen69’s two sons came out on the course near the finish line on their razor scooters cheering her on and telling her how proud they were of her. *insert sobbing while cycling here*

     candicefinish  candicefinish3

When she crossed the finish line, I was NO GOOD! Everybody was crying & hugging.




I am so proud of TEAM DIVA! We did it!…and got the bling to show for it.

         FINISHER  candicefinsher

Up next on my schedule…

Mussleman Triathlon – Geneva, NY

mini-Mussel Sprint Triathlon

Saturday, July 16, 2011 - 9:00 am
750 meter swim - 16.1 mile bike - 3.2 mile run


Princess Cara's Garden: Today's Harvest & Dish

Check out these cucumbers!!! HUGE! We made an awesome cucumber salad by adding some onion, oil & vinegar. DELISH!


Courage & Inspiration–The DC Triathlon


I participated in the DC Triathlon this Sunday as a relay team and once again I was inspired to keep going & growing in the sport.  The Tri club I belong to (TriUnify) put a “ragtag” group of us together – a young lady w/special needs decided she wanted to exert some independence and tackle the swim portion (with a club member swimming with her the whole time) and myself & another young lady volunteered to do the bike & run portion to complete the team.


Our swim teammate was SO EXCITED & motivated. From the time we picked up our packet to her coming into transition to trade chips with me…COURAGE & INSPIRATION

She got in that water & FINISHED! While I wasn’t able to watch…it may not have been pretty, she may have used every stroke known to man…but she got in & completed the swim. SHUT THE DAMN DOOR!

     IMG_1104  IMG_1106

There were so many more moments of COURAGE & INSPIRATION…from the man with one arm completing the Olympic Distance, to the 76 year old woman gritting & bearing it, but finishing it, to the man that carried the American Flag the whole time (not sure if he swam with it too).


I was moved almost to tears, when a sister of a TriUnify member recognized me from my blog & 1st Triathlon Video and told me that my video INSPIRED her & gave her the COURAGE to do her first triathlon. WHO KNEW? You just never know how/who you INSPIRE.

    IMG_1114       IMG_1109

I am INSPIRED by my girlfriend, Pattey, as she drinks the Triathlon Koolaid (from a damn pitcher) with me. I am INSPIRED & see COURAGE in my girlfriend, Nineteen69, as she deals with fear & uncertainty on her first upcoming Triathlon next weekend with frankness & grace…and keeps True North. COURAGE.


I am thankful to Becca, who convinced me that I could do this – I drank that same Koolaid I gave to Pattey – and is a fabulous training partner (when we can get it in together).


Thank you to my relay teammates today! I had a wonderful day with you and all of the TriUnify members I met for the 1st time this weekend. YOU ROCKED IT!


Why do I Tri?





The Truth About Cereal & Nuttin But The Truth

Here we go with week2 of Benefits of Cereal Month and this week I’m going to throw at you the "Truth Behind the Bowl" -  and see if I can help dispel some cereal misperceptions. You know the ones – “it ain’t nutting but a bowl of sugar”, “It contributes to kids getting fat” and so on & so forth.


I too, had some of those notions in my head (but being a busy, shiftless & lazy mom – shrugs & pours cereal) and after this week of study & comparison, I’m not so trifling after all.


Let me share some of what I found out:


"Your child´s favorite cereals may actually help fight childhood obesity," said Dr. Keith Ayoob Ed.D., RD. "Cereal provides key nutrients that are important to overall health and cereals, including sweetened cereals, provide less than 5 percent of a child´s daily sugar intake."

In addition, did you know cereal is lower in calories and higher in nutrition than many other breakfast options like bagels with cream cheese and pancakes?

  • A 2009 study of children aged 6 to 18 shows cereal eaters have healthier body weights than those who don´t eat cereal, regardless of sweetness level.
  • Cereal eaters consume less fat than non-cereal eaters.
  • Not all cereals are equal and it´s important to read the labels -- General Mills is proud of its commitment to reduce sugar in all of its kids´ cereals to single-digit levels per serving.
  • General Mills has more than 30 nutritious cereals with 130 calories or less per serving.

I decided to take a moment and read the nutrition labels of one of Princess Cara’s favorite cereals Trix (with 1/2c of 2% milk) and compare it to her other all time favorite Waffles (2 w/syrup) and was CERTAIN the Trix would lose…NOT


Trix w/2 % Milk                                   vs.                     2 Waffles w/Syrup

160 Calories, 15 from Fat                                             180 Calories, 60 from Fat

Fat: 1.5 g                                                                    Fat: 6 g

Carbohydrates: 27 g                                                    Carbohydrates: 26 g

      Dietary Fiber 1g                                                           Dietary Fiber 1g

      Sugars 10g                                                                  Sugars 2g

Potassium 50mg                                                           Potassium ZILCH = 0

Sodium 180mg                                                             Sodium 420 mg – DaHell

Vitamin A 15%                                                              Vitamin A 20%

Vitamin C 10%                                                              Vitamin C ZILCH = 0

Vitamin D 25% (15% + w/milk)                                       Vitamin D ZILCH =0

Iron 25%                                                                       Iron 20%

Calcium 25%                                                                 Calcium 20%

B6 25%                                                                         B6 20%

B12 25%                                                                       B12 20%

Protein ZILCH = 0                                                         Protein 4g

Yeah, I was impressed. We are going to keep going with the cereal. She eats it. It’s nutritious. Wham, Bam, Thank you, Ma’am.

benefits of cereal- week  2

We got the chance to eat more great cereal with this wonderful gift pack pictured above. The bowls are PERFECT portion controlled sized (yeah, ladies & gents just for you who are looking for ways to control how much you pour out in the soup bowl you’ve been using).


TiffanyInHouston won the last prize drawing. That was WAY too easy as ONLY TWO OF YALL EVEN BOTHERED TO COMMENT!!! N.E.WAY…


…if you would like to have this nice bowl & spoon set and sample cereals, leave me a comment…any comment will do…and I’ll randomly pick a winner on WEDNESDAY, JUNE 22nd.

General Mills provided you with the free product, information, and gift pack through MyBlogSpark.


The Ultimate Milestone Party

I threw a party last Sunday after the Zooma Annapolis 10k to celebrate several milestones:

The FireMarshalls’ 46th Birthday

The FireMarshall & The TravelDiva’s
24th Wedding Anniversary

28 years of love & friendship between us

23 years of Friendship with MsPattey – HandyHOTness


               anniversary  beforerace

It was an awesome party! The crabs (thank you Benny!) were tore down. You savages. The ribs were slap your momma delish (thank you Darren!) OMG! Those drinks…Seriously…I think I am going to have to buy me one of those slushy machines. GMa Sandy put her foot off in some Bourbon Slushes. I put together the batch of Pain Killers (yep, there was no pain had). Princess Erin…hell, I don’t know what she put up in that machine but let me tell you…SLAMMING! My classmate, Ron Pachenco brought an entire CASE of fabulous wine. YOU ROCK – and apparently the wine rocked too as it was consumed in great quantities. Thank you to all of you that brought gifts & cards & just yourself to celebrate the fun!


The weather was on our side and despite it getting a little steamy, we rocked the back yard with music, line dancing, eating, DRINKING, talking, DRINKING and just having a great time. There were so many hilarious stories and things going on that it would take me days to go regale you with them all. Next time…you just need to RSVP yes or if you did and didn’t show, well, you missed it.


You missed the impromptu line dance class, my sister inviting some “relatives” (distant relatives) over & the subsequent TP movie unfolding, the boy who got into the “adult beverage” machine and promptly spit it back into the ice bucket (NOT HIS GLASS), the intense discussion about being a sovreign citizen –(still getting the O_o from all of us and the FBI), the skirt chasin’ after married women, the politico’s who were promptly handed a Pain Killer and ignored and SOOOO much more.


I had a wonderful time!…what I can remember. As MsPattey’s daughter told us after the 10K…”Let the Debauchery Begin” and we did. Enjoy the video!

The Ultimate Milestone Party

First Harvest 2011

Princess Cara’s Garden is already reaping some bounty! I wish I could describe the scent coming of these peppers. Absolutely Fabulously Aromatic. Nothing at all like the “no smell” on the peppers in the store. Since we don’t have a HUGE garden like my Country BFF Terri over at Life in the Big Gray House on the Corner, when we pick something, I gotta come up with a little recipe to gobble this freshness down with. It was decided that I will chop the green peppers up and them to my nacho dip mix.


Nacho’s & a movie courtesy of Princess Cara’s garden.


If You Can Dodge a Wrench…

…you can dodge a ball. (You would have had to seen the movie Dodge ball to get the joke) That is EXACTLY what I was thinking when I got out of the water at Sandy Point after an hour of open water swimming.


If I can dodge the waves, the wind, the current and NOT drown, then I can dodge the swim in a river for sho!



It was the most harrowing open water swim I have ever experienced and none of the pictures I managed to get give you and idea of how rough the water was. I felt just downright pathetic. After about the 5th time she had us swim out to and around the buoy, I had had ENOUGH. I wasn’t going to dodge not one more wave. I got the idea. If I could spot that tiny buoy in (what seamed like a scene from A Perfect Storm) choppy waters then I most definitely could spot a giant orange iceberg in a river. If I can get hit in the face by 6-12in chop, breath & spit out water at the same time, then I figure I can swim in the radioactive Skullkill and live to tell about it. Fugg Dis. I jumped out of the water and told Becca, lets go – let’s get the bikes.


Becca and I walked back up to out bags and were trying to decide how far we were going to go when a group of about 8 cyclists from BMWCC – a predominantly Black Cycling Club (Baltimore Metro Wheelers Cycling Club) rode up. OMG! We struck up a conversation – they had already done the first half of their 50 mile and were about to turn around – DID WE WANT TO JOIN THEM? Hell yeah! One of the riders, Ken, was gracious enough to offer bringing us back to the park after riding 20 miles out to BWI. The game was on!

waterbreak2 waterbreak

It was the best group ride I’ve been on to day…wait…it was the ONLY group ride I’ve been on. It was challenging (as they pushed me faster than I was used to going) and absolutely wonderful & fun to have people to ride with that watched out for you, talked & joked with you and were just all around supportive of you (not to mention also looked like you). Black Girls (& Boys) DO Bike, Swim, Run. YES!!!! I can’t wait to go again.


We did 20 miles from Sandy Point to BWI Observation Lot and I didn’t really know that I could go that fast. That last hill at the end whipped me out but I made it.

Shout out to Tania, Carol, Ken and all the other riders (I apologize for forgetting your names) for taking in two stragglers and making us feel right at home.




Anybody want a Threesome – Swim, Bike Run? (Yes, Candice – it is a sticker on my car – your Crazy Cake #2)


BFF Fitness Weekend

I’ve been friends with Ms.Pattey for over 23 years. It all started when I pledged AKA grad chapter at Ft. Knox and has been going on ever since. I prolly talk (phone & texting) to her on & off just about every day (sometimes 3-4x/day depending on the daily drama)



We have been running the streets together ever since. We have shopped till we were stoopit, we have gone on trips where we tore the city down, we have wallpapered together, laid flooring, painted, constructed, gardened, decorated (recall: HANDY HOTness posts) and NOW we are working it out together. GO US!


My girl flew into the DMV for the weekend to hang and do the Zooma Annapolis 10k with me and when she got off the plane on Friday, we were “running” nonstop from the time I shoved her in the car at the airport. See…somehow I managed to snag me another victim to join me on the triathlon journey. You have to understand that Pattey and I are ELITE ALTHLETES in our own minds. Thus, what’s another athletic adventure to us. LOL. Pattey done gone and got herself some swimming lessons, ordered up some Tri magazines (she knows more about the sport than I do) and has been shopping for bikes. I pulled up at South.w.est Air Baggage Claim, opened the door, told her to jump in and we were off to look at bike stores.

biketesting We tested out and looked at “performance cycles” (cause a bike that costs the same as a mortgage payment is not just a bicycle) and got a lot of tips. Seriously, dude. “We (who da hell is WE) wouldn’t want to see you on anything less that a *insert blah blah..blah blah ba blah*. Did NOT my girl just tell you that price was the first consideration and that she wasn’t trying to win the damn race. Just sayin’.


On Saturday, we got up at the crack of dawn, downed some coffee and I took her to Bikram Yoga. Another victim. MUWAAAHAAAHAAHAA!!! SHE LOVED IT!!! Another convert.

patteyyoga lisapatteyyoga

We showered and got dressed and went off to pick up our race packets for the 10k…but FIRST, I dragged her over to Feet First for a “proper” shoe fitting. I couldn’t have her complaining that her feet hurt and she was busting her toe through the top of her running shoes. She kept swearing she wasn’t getting no new damn shoes, but yeah, ummm, okay. A minute on the machine and in the hands of a very good “Shoe doctor” and we had us a new pair of shoes. *insert evil shopping buddy laugh here*


After the shoe purchase we drove to Annapolis to pick up our race packets and were VERY disappointed with the “expo”. It was very small but I managed to spend a small fortune on gear. I fell in love with these sport dresses and various accessories…yeah, whatever. I needed wanted it.


We then went down to the National Harbor to meet another of Pattey’s long time friends – Soiz – (recall Grown Women Gone Wild, The 50th Birthday Celebration) and enjoyed a wonderful lunch & some shopping before heading back to the True Blessings Estate to get ready for the race.


Sunday morning, Pattey and I were up at the crack of dawn to get to Annapolis for the 10k. She kept cracking on me about how CO-ORDIANTED I was. I may be slow, I may be plump, but I LOOK GOOD doing this shyt.

raceready Pattey talks trash about how slow she is. LIAR. That Byotch be running a 10min pace leaving my slow as frozen molasses (12min pace) azz in the damn dust. She did wait for me at the finish line – which was at the top of a MOTHER EFFIN HILL – and we collected up our achievers necklace, snack bag and were back at the house by 10 am.

        beforerace  bazu-310551


…and then it was time for the DEBAUCHERY to begin with the Ultimate Milestone Party (that will be another post) – and I have to say that Pattey & I put a damn hurt on those cocktails. One of the best parties EVER!!!!


I just have to say that I feel blessed to have some of the most wonderful TOP MAFIA in my life. It is the awesome to have such close & awesome friends…the bring a shove, don’t ask no questions, can’t/won’t remember where the bodies are buried friends.


Love you, Pattey. It was a wonderful weekend!


Princess Cara's Garden 2011 Edition

Princess Cara's Garden is coming along quite nicely again this year. Strawberries are coming up, I might have to go ahead and harvest some of the green peppers already, the cucumbers are coming along like gang busters and the watermelon plants are looking nice. How bout those tomatoes!

I also started some carrots and need to move them to a planter. Looks like we are going to reap a lot from what we sowed.

This is fun.