Monday, November 12, 2012

Well, it's been a few month since I've posted anything on this blog.

Life sure has a way of keeping my busy.  Hard to believe that's it's already the middle of November.  Since my last post a lot of things have changed. Here's a quick list:
  • This summer we took a road trip to WA to attend my sister's wedding, hang out for a week in OR and then attend my cousin's wedding.  It was a great trip with a ton of fun memories. It's not too often my entire side of the family is together, so it was extra special.
  • We moved! We love our new house and especially our new neighborhood. Don's parents moved into our other house, so it's a win-win.
  • The kids are at the same school! Alex started 1st grade and Katie is in 4th grade.
  • Since both kids are in school all day, I've started subbing for the school district. I was a little worried about how it would all work out with getting the kids to and from school, but we've worked it out.  I prefer to take jobs at early start schools, (7:00-8:00 starts) because they get out just after 2:00 which gives me enough time to get to the kids' school by 3:20 when the get out.  Don takes them in the morning.  It works out great because they don't have to ride the bus and I don't have to pay for Safe Key.  Plus, I LOVE being there when Alex bursts out of the doors at the end of the day shouting, "Mom!" and telling me his day was great.  It's one of the best parts of my day.
  • Every Wednesday I get to volunteer in both Katie and Alex's classes.  I truly love getting to know the kids in their classes and getting to be a part of their school life.  They both love having me there too.  I love both of their teachers.
  • We're still following the Paleo Diet Lifestyle.  It's been a struggle with the kids sometimes, they still just want to have cereal for breakfast, but I've seen positive health changes in all of us, so I'm holding my ground.
  • I'm taking an on-line 3 credit graduate class as part of the credits I need to renew my teaching license.  It's an interesting subject, but as no surprise to me, I really prefer the classroom setting over the on-line setting.  I also took a two Saturday one credit class, so once I complete this course I will only have 2 credits left to earn.  It's sure a change to say, "I have to go work on my homework." 
  • Alex has been playing soccer this fall.  To my surprise, he really enjoys it and is a great player.  The thing about Alex is that he always gives it 110%. He is a very coachable kid and he has a great attitude.  I think it will serve him well in life. 
That's a pretty good update. Who knows when the next time I will post will be? I'm guessing it will be our Christmas letter, which this post seems to be a kind of rough draft.  :)

Tuesday, April 17, 2012

Day 17

I am over half way through my very first Whole 30 and dive into the Paleo world.  So far I've been very successful.  I'm so thankful to the friends who have done this before me and are so encouraging.  This journey has been pretty easy for me.  I don't miss any of the things I'm no longer eating.  I do, however, still have trouble with lunch.  I just really hate lunch.  Nothing ever sounds good. 

Don has loved all of the paleo dinners that I've made.  His favorites have to be the smoked pulled pork, and the World's Best Chicken.  I even managed to pull of feeding my book club last night, all of the food was paleo and nobody complained, in fact they liked it! 

My kids are so aware of what I'm doing.  Alex is always asking me, "Is this paleo, Mom?"  Katie says that she's going to "go paleo too."  I'm still waiting for that to happen.  For the kids it's going to be a slower process as they get used to eating a little bit differently. I'm just happy that I can be a good example for them and they are aware of what's going on and eager to ask questions and accepting of the answers.

Over the last 17 days I've done a bunch of firsts.
  • Made home made mayo.  Delicious!!
  • Made almond flour.
  • Smoked a Pork Shoulder on the BBQ, then finished it in oven.
  • Made delicious homemade Ranch dip/dressing.
  • Went to Bunco and didn't eat one piece of tempting candy, and most importantly didn't have a hard time ignoring it.
  • Brined Chicken.
  • "Riced" cauliflower.
  • Used coconut aminos.
I'm so happy to be on this journey.  Thanks to everybody who has been encouraging and supportive. I'll keep you posted.

Monday, March 26, 2012

A new Adventure

It's time for a new adventure.  I've done the research, I've seen my friends' results and I've decided to board the train.  I am going to start living a paleo lifestyle.  It's going to start with doing a "Whole 30" starting April 1st.  There is a lot of information, written by the experts, out there, so I'm not going to rewrite it.  Basically, I'm going to adopt a different diet.  In a nutshell: Eating fresh foods from good sources and eliminating all grains, dairy, legumes, sugar, & processed foods.

My story doesn't start now, my story began 35 years ago.  I came into this world as a big kid (9 & 1/2 lbs) and I stayed a big kid.  As a kid, I lived an active life style.  I spent countless hours outside.  Whether playing hide and seek, riding our bikes for miles, delivering newspapers, playing sports, or just hanging out, we were doing stuff.  I was never a great athlete, but that didn't stop me from playing basketball & softball from third grade through junior high.  I joined the golf team in high school. I was never good at running.  I was always out of breath. It never seemed fair to me that I was bigger than most other kids, but I didn't really dwell on it.  I didn't think it bothered me, but in retrospect, it has always been a burden I've silently bared.  I hated being bigger than my big sister.  I hated not fitting into the latest fashions.  I hated that clothes that did fit me were made for old, fat people. I hated that I felt like I wasn't doing anything differently that other kids.

I've always hated theses pictures.  See my thunder thighs and and general chunkiness.  Notice my sister (3 years older than me), notice, her skinny arms, legs and tummy! I do look happy, and I'm sure I was.  I was always a pretty happy kid.

I've never let my weight define me, but over the last several years, I've let it get out of control and it has buried me.  I know it's time for a change.  I know the change needs to be drastic, and I know the change won't be easy. I'm looking forward to the day when I don't think how much easier life would be if I was skinnier.

My goal is to be healthy.  I want to be able to do anything that I want and go anywhere that I want without worrying if my size will play a factor.  In September I started working out a Curves.  I've gotten in better physical shape, even if to an outsider it's not noticeable.  A few pounds have come off, but more importantly my energy and strength have improved.  I don't LOVE working out, but I do love the feeling when I'm done.  I love the feeling of putting myself first and doing something for me.

The funniest part of this journey is that I am armed with all of the information to be successful, but have failed so many times. What I lack is motivation and follow through.  I'm determined that this journey will be different.  That this journey will be successful with the help, guidance and encouragement of my friends and family.

My mom died too young. I see all that she is missing.  She would have loved being a grandma. She would have loved experiencing all of the things her grandkids do.  I want to have that.  I know I need to make changes now to ensure I have a chance to do all that I want to do.

There is so much more I have to say, and maybe one day I'll get my words together and be able to express myself.  Maybe one day, I'll feel brave enough to share all of my thoughts.  Until then, wish me luck, better yet, wish me strength and peace. :)

Tuesday, December 27, 2011

2011 Christmas Letter

Dear Family and Friends,

Merry Christmas and Happy New Year!! Once again the year has flown by and it’s hard to believe it’s almost over. We hope you have as many things to be thankful for as we do.

2011 started out pretty sad for our family as we said goodbye to our dog, Jerry, on the 2nd of January. The kids handled it pretty well, but it was sure strange to come home without a friendly face wagging his tail. In April we added a new puppy to our family. Quincy, the mini-goldendoodle, has been a great addition. He is super sweet and best of all doesn’t shed! Quincy has made our house a home once again. He even joined us on our summer trip to WA.

Katie is 9 and in third grade. She continues to love the performing arts. Katie takes piano lessons, attends drama classes and sang in the Clark County Children’s Choir. This spring she received her first communion and was lucky enough that her Aunt Erin, who happens to be her godmother, was in town to share the special occasion with her. Katie attended a two week drama conservatory this summer that culminated with a play. She still attends Gilbert Magnet school (communication and fine arts). When not performing, Katie can usually be found with her nose in a book.

Alex turned 6 this summer while on our trip to WA. He got to celebrate his birthday at the Point Defiance Zoo with cousins, aunts, & a future uncle! Alex is in Kindergarten at the Kids’ Co-op. He loves school and loves to learn. He is always picking something new to research. Alex spent the year playing flag football and basketball. He also continues to attend music/singing classes. He loves to perform. Alex also had quite a few visits from the tooth fairy this fall!

When not shuttling the kids between activities, Kerry finds time to participate in a couple of book clubs and Bunco groups. She also enjoys working in Alex’s class at the Co-op.

Don has had a few changes at work and is now an operations supervisor. It’s a nice change with more responsibility. On Friday nights you can find Don at the bowling alley where he’s rekindled his bowling hobby.

We’ve spend some great family time together. January took us to Phoenix to visit Grandpa and take in a Monster Jam event. It was fun to ride the light rail into the city. We also visited a gold mine. The kids had the best time swimming in the pools at Grandpa’s community. March brought us the chance to go to another Monster Jam even, The World Finals right here in Las Vegas. We saw a couple of local plays and even took in The Lion King at Mandalay Bay. In November, Kerry & Katie took a quick trip to WA to visit Kerry’s sisters and do some special shopping. To end the year, we took the kids to see the Michael Jackson Immortal World Tour Cirque show. It was great!

This summer we took a two week road trip to WA. The kids and the dog were great travelers. We spent a great day exploring Seattle. We rode the monorail, played at the Pacific Science Center, found the famous gum wall, shopped at Pike’s Place Market and ate some seafood on the pier. We also got to visit The Point Defiance Zoo and spend a day at Wild Waves water and amusement park. The kids enjoyed seeing their cousins and having a sleepover at Aunt Erin’s house. We also joined a bunch of family members to celebrate Kerry’s uncle’s birthday. Next we had a great couple of days enjoying ourselves with the Wilsons at their cabin on Bumping Lake. We ended our trip in Quincy at Kerry’s dad’s house before the long drive back to Las Vegas.

We are looking forward to many more adventures in 2012. Wishing you and your family a very Merry Christmas and blessed New Year. We hope if you are ever in our area you will give us a call.

With much love,

Don, Kerry, Katie & Alex Oppenheim

Thursday, December 22, 2011

Top 11 of 2011

The Oppenheim Family

Our top 11 moments of 2011

11. Many visits from the tooth fairy for Katie & Alex

10. Kidshine & Matinee performances

9. Alex’s first reception in Flag Football and basket in Basketball!

8. Katie’s First Communion

7. Katie’s piano recital & Choir concert

6. Monster Jam World Finals, The Lion King, & Michael Jackson’s Immortal Cirque Show

5. Trip to Arizona

4. Quincy, our mini-goldendoodle puppy
3. Family Game Nights

2. Summer Vacation to Washington

1. Visits with Family and Friends!

Tuesday, July 12, 2011


25 facts that you might or might not know about me!

  1. I do not have a belly button.
  2. I  have never been stung by a bee.
  3. My idea of a perfect day is spending it on the lake or river with my family.
  4. I wish I was a better writer.
  5. I've never dyed my hair.
  6. My shoe size is 11!
  7. I enjoy cooking.
  8. I think I invented reality TV.  I had the idea as a kid of having a camera following me around to broadcast my oh so exciting life! LOL
  9. I don't like any kind of melon.
  10. I need a new hobby.
  11. My thumbs look like big toes.
  12. I wish I lived closer to my family.
  13. My dream vacation is to go to Italy.
  14. I've never lived alone.
  15. I would like to learn to play the guitar.
  16. I would like to take a pottery class.
  17. I think I'm pretty witty.
  18. My favorite color is green.
  19. I can't touch my right shoulder with my right hand.
  20. I've broken my collar bone and my wrist.
  21. I don't like crowded places, especially shopping malls.
  22. I'm not meeting my potential.
  23. I went to Girl Scout camp every summer for a lot of summers.  It was the best!
  24. I think instrumental music concerts are boring, and I played in band for 6 years and took piano lessons!
  25. I love to play games, but have a tendency to help the other team or player if they are losing.

Friday, June 17, 2011

Childhood memory

4.  What is your happiest childhood memory?  What makes it so special?

This is a hard question to answer.  I had a happy childhood all around. I have to choose an event that occurred more than once.
 My happiest memories are boating with my entire family. There is just something so fun about packing up a lunch and spending the day at the river. I loved every part of it.  I loved tubing behind the boat. I loved swimming in the water.  I loved building in the sand.  I loved riding in the boat. When I think back to all the time we spent on the boat, I'm always happy.  Everybody was always having a good time.  There was lots of laughter and fun. It was a time when we all came together to get things done. We all helped load and unload, pack and unpack, and we all worked together. 
I can still close my eyes and feel the warmth of the sun, smell the exhaust from the boat, taste the sunchips, and hear the fun and laughter. I can remember the happy, tired feeling driving in the car on the way home. If I could recreate one event with my family, it would have to be a day on the boat.