What’s Keeping You Busy?


My question of the day is: What’s keeping you busy?

Like most weeks, my calendar is pretty full. But, it’s mostly full of blessings.

Sure, there’s some stuff I’d like to erase from my “To Do” list, a few things I’m not looking forward to dealing with, but I strive really hard to remind myself that those not-so-fun To Do’s will only serve to make the really fun things that much better.

So, I thought it would be fun to take a look at our calendars and share a little about what we find filling them up.

With mine, you’ll find that I tend to spend a lot of time with my family,

my girlfriends,

socializing with friends,

and exercising (this one needs to get on my calendar more often).

There’s also rarely a week that goes by when I’m not attending some type of volunteer event or meeting.

But I also try to remember, amidst the hustle and bustle of my life, take care of myself.

Time to regroup, listen to my thoughts, enjoy a good book.

Which is why I try to add a little quiet or alone time to my calendar.
time for what makes you happy
Some weeks I’m better at this than others.

And at the end of the day, when I’m snuggling under my blankets in bed, after racing along checking things off my To Do list, I really hope I don’t forget this mantra:
love urself

So, what’s filling up your calendar this week? Something fun you wanna share? Something important you’d like us to think good thoughts about for you?

I hope you have time to stop by and share!

Exercise + Family = FUN!

family walking

A family that plays together… well, they have fun together.

A family that exercises together…well, they are healthier together.

So, it stands to reason that a family that plays and exercises together… well, they’ll have fun and be healthier together! ☺

My family loves to play tennis, run, walk and dance. Last Christmas, we had a family reunion and held a 5K family fun run in our neighborhood followed by a family tennis tournament on our community court. Trophies were even given away to the top female and male finishers in each event. Several nights, we fired up our Wii and spent hours taking turns with our Just Dance games. Fun was definitely had by all!

family run day

This past weekend, I ran the Rock n Roll Philadelphia half marathon.

rock n roll philly

It was my first time visiting Philly and let me just say I loved the city! More importantly, I loved the opportunity to spend a fun, healthy weekend with family and close friends. Our group had people flying in from Florida, California and Las Vegas, plus one who drove from DC and another from the Philly area. It was a memorable weekend with close friends, a sister, a niece and a daughter—all of us enjoying the blessing of time together.

rocky pic

Whether it’s a walk in your neighborhood park, playing a sport like tennis, or participating in an organized event like a Rock n Roll race, the main thing is to stay active and have fun. Keep your family movin’ and groovin’ and getting their heart rates up. ☺

So, what do you and your family do for exercise and fun?

Young at Heart

trampoline time

Having and raising kids can give you gray hair, make you gain weight, and lose a ton of sleep. On the flip side, having kids has also kept me young at heart—which, in my humble opinion, overshadows or outshines all the aforementioned negatives.

Even though my girls are in college and post-college adult life, I’m blessed with a 10-year old niece and a 12-year old nephew who spend the summer with my parents and me. This means my summer is filled with dolls, video games, Disney Channel, bike rides, kid movies at the theater and—for the first time in my life—a trampoline park.

If you follow me on Instagram or twitter you probably already saw the pics of my niece, nephew, close friend and me at a Skyzone trampoline park this past weekend. I’m a big Groupon and Living Social shopper and when I saw a deal for 90 minutes of trampoline time a couple of weeks ago, my first thought was, “Oh, my kids will love this!” Quickly followed by, “Wait, I’ll love this!” ☺

sky2 copy

Let me tell you, 90 minutes is a looooong time. Especially when you’re using muscles you normally don’t. And even more so when you forget your age ‘cuz you’re feeling like a kid again—bouncing off side walls, leap frogging across 8 trampolines, pushing yourself higher ‘cuz you think you can actually do a flip in the air. Talk about a new way to get some exercise!

We all jumped like silly fools. The kids played trampoline dodgeball. No, I didn’t go for that, I was too busy acting like Spiderman throwing myself against the trampoline wall trying to stick for a second or two before careening back toward the trampoline floor.

Needless to say, we were all hot, sweaty messes by the end of our allotted time. But we were hot, sweaty, giggly, happy messes. Fun was had by all!

For a brief time I forgot my real age and enjoyed being a kid again. All thanks to my desire to help my own kids have fun.

Of course, when I woke up the next morning with sore calves and an achy lower back, my age caught up with me. I moaned for a second, then laughed when I found out my nephew was sore, too. ☺

Another happy memory created together—stretching out our soreness from our time jumping through the air, laughing at our silliness.

So sure, I’ll take the occasional gray hair and sleepless night because I’m a worrier. But I’ll treasure the moments when my kids allow me to act their age rather than my own. ☺

What about you? Have you tried anything new lately that made you feel young again—wild and crazy and like you could take on the world? If not, I suggest you see if there’s a Skyzone or something similar near you!

young at heart

Sports—Camaraderie, Character Building and, oh yeah, Exercise

If you’re a sports fan, subscribe to your local paper or regularly watch a morning news show like “Today” or “Mike & Mike”, there’s very little chance you haven’t heard that World Cup Soccer is in full swing. I fall into all three of those categories—especially the first one.

In my family, watching or playing sports is as natural as breathing. Yeah, it’s a way to get some exercise, but it’s also great for family bonding and teaching important life lessons.

My daughters have learned about pride in doing your best; humility when winning; perseverance when losing; leadership and teamwork for the whole rather than the individual.

Some of our best family memories have taken place on a court, a field, or in the stands together. Some of our most disappointing and some of our funniest moments have been the same.

Sure, participating in a sport is great for your body—strength, conditioning, and flexibility. But it’s also vital for character building. And it’s definitely a fabulous way to bring my family together.

Whether it’s a walk around the neighborhood with our dog,


training for a half marathon with my sister


or two of my daughters


participating in a Ladies Football Clinic with my mom


or organizing a 3-mile family fun run and tennis tournament during a Christmas family reunion in Florida


sports has always played an important unifying role in our lives.

Right now we’re in the throes of World Cup Fever, cheering for the USA!


If you’re a soccer fan you probably already know this, if you’re not don’t be surprised when I tell you that thus far in the Cup as a USA fan we’ve experienced pride in our boys and our country, humility in finally beating Ghana, perseverance in losing the lead and ending our game with Portugal in a tie, and leadership and teamwork as we gear up to take on the powerful German team on Thursday.

These are all vital character traits we can all stand to improve. In my family, we simply like to dress up a little crazy now and then while we work our character together! ☺




The Big 4-0

vision page in my health planner

vision page in my health planner

So it’s almost March which means we’re getting pretty close to May which is when I become an official adult. I realize I’ve technically been an adult for years, but 40 just seems adult in a big way.

Needless to say when January hit and I recognized this was the big year I decided it was time to make some significant changed. I’ve put us on a budget, it’s time to pay off some debt. I’ve been working pretty diligently at my health – trying to eat right and exercise. I get it right some, but I’m still a work in progress.

I’m trying to simplify our lives to some extent – putting the girls on a toy rotation (for another blog), cleaning out closets and getting rid of a ton of stuff. In other words, I’m trying to take control and be responsible and all that adult-like behavior.

How about you? Have you ever made any big changes before a significant birthday? 

I’m Robyn DeHart, AKA Basket-Case Mama, but not because I’m crazy (though really, what mom isn’t?) but because I have a slight obsession with baskets, well containers really. I’m a bit of an organization nut and I love to containerize stuff. And yes, I’m authorized to use words like that because I am also a writer. But back to the kids, so I’m mom to two ridiculously beautiful little girls and I can say that without bragging because I didn’t actually make them. The Professor and I adopted said little lovelies from the foster-care system here in Texas and now we’re a big happy forever family. Busybee is five and so full of joy it just oozes from her. Babybee is a three and is too smart for her own good.  www.robyndehart.com

I do some stuff right….

There’s so much pressure in our world to have the perfect life or to at least strive for it. I know I fall into this trap a lot. But here’s the truth, my life is messy, my house gets messy, I’m always behind on laundry, my writing is messy, I don’t consistently exercise (though I’m working on this), I eat entirely too many m&m’s and I’m so not a perfect mom. But every now and then I do something that makes me proud of where I am that day, sometimes it’s only one tiny thing, but you know I’ll take it. So here are some things that I (mostly) do right…

miss_spiders_tea_partyI read to my kids. Even when it’s reading the same I-can-read book that has no plot, and zero excitement. I don’t play with them nearly enough – as in getting on the floor and grabbing a Barbie and using my imagination with them. But I do read them books. And I dance with them. And I snuggle them and get silly with them.

I’ve finally conquered the paper monster. I don’t know about y’all, but we get an extraordinary amount of mail, I’d say about 80% of this is crap (junk mail, flyers, political crap & credit card offers – you know what’s irritating? credit card offers from companies where you already have a credit card – check your mailing list, people). But after many trial and errors for the right process and solution, I finally have one that works that keeps paperwork from eating my house. (for the most part…)

IMG_0941I make sure we eat pretty healthily *most* of the time. My girls get lots of fruit and they eat veggies even if they don’t want to. And they have to try new things, even if the chicken is “wet” (Emily, can you believe Babybee said that to me last week? She is so my kid!) They snack on raisins and trail mix with nuts. I try to make sure that we’re all set for the week with healthy go-to foods, boiled eggs, cut up veggies, fruit, etc.

I learn from my mistakes. I don’t know about y’all, but I screw up all the time, in all areas of my life, but especially in parenting. But I think I learn from my mistakes and try to correct things in the future. As much as I hate it, I do recognize when I’m wrong and try to move forward in a better direction.

Hopefully there are other things I do right, but that’s my list for today. I could fill a book with all the things I do wrong, but I think we put too much focus on those things. Sometimes we need to step back and acknowledge that we do do some things very right. So what are your things that you’re doing right?

Time for Exercise

We hear it all the time. We need to exercise and to eat healthy. It’s way easier said than done. I’m not just saying that. I know it from experience. I especially know how hard it is to eat healthy. I am more of an “I’ll-eat-what-I-want-so-there” kind of person than a eat a little of everything in moderation kind of person.

I do much better with exercise, but this wasn’t always the case. When I first had Baby Galen, I didn’t think I’d ever exercise again. Anyone feel that way right now? Anyone think they will never have the time or energy to walk a mile much less run one? I’m not saying I always have the energy to do it, but I have found the time. I’m going to tell you what I do, not because I think you should do it, but because it’s worked for me.

I go to a fitness bootcamp at the local YMCA 3 days a week from 5-6. Yes, that’s a.m. Why? Because there’s nothing else I have to do from 5-6, so no excuses. Because it’s a little cooler before the sun rises in Houston. Because my husband is almost always home and my daughter is almost always asleep at that hour, so I’m inconveniencing no one (but me).


Like I said, this isn’t for everyone. Most of the time, I feel like just making it to bootcamp is half the battle. But I’ve been doing it for 2 years, and here’s what I’ve learned about how to make exercise work if you’re a mom.

1) If you can, do it independently of your child or husband. That way if the kid is sick or tired or cranky or the husband is sick or tired or cranky, it doesn’t mean you can’t go work out. A lot of moms work out after school drop off. I have to work during that time, or it would be a great solution for me.

2) Get some accountability, like a trainer or a partner. If you know someone is waiting for you to show up, you’ll think twice about skipping.

3) Go in the morning. Okay, I know you may not be a morning person, but studies show people who exercise in the morning stick to their routines and are more successful than those who exercise at another time.

4) Do something you like. I hate being stuck in the gym. I am always bored to death on a treadmill. I like to be outside, so I do a bootcamp that takes place outside and where the workouts change every time I go.

5) Set a goal. I find if I set a goal, it keeps me motivated. It doesn’t have to be a weight loss goal, it can be something like work out three times a week for a month or run 5 miles by the end of 8 weeks or something like that. Then, when you make your goal, celebrate!


Do you have any tips for making exercise work for busy moms?

Shana Galen, Multitasker Mama
I’m Shana Galen, AKA Multitasker Mama (and aren’t we all?). I’m a wife, mom to a three-year-old daughter I call Baby Galen. My parenting motto is, “Keep moving. Don’t pass out. Don’t throw up.” Or maybe that’s my fitness motto? www.shanagalen.com

The big 4-0

100_2299I’m not there yet, I just turned 39 in May, but that big birthday is looming. It’s funny how certain numbers can freak us out. I remember 25, in particular was difficult for me. I’d had everything planned out that I would meet my would-be husband in college and I’d be married by 24. Yeah, that didn’t happen and when that 25th birthday rolled around, I was in a funk. Silly when you think about it now, but then it was difficult. In any case, with that big 4-0 looming I’m doing what most people (women? do you think men do it too?) do before a “big” birthday, I’m planning all the ways I want things to be different. You know like before 40 I’ll be the new and improved Robyn.

Come on, I know y’all do that too. So here’s my list.

Spiritual – I want to be better about making my spiritual life more integrated into my daily life and not just a church day thing.

scale_upload-lHealth – this is probably the biggest for me and well the same damn thing I was struggling with at 29 before that big 3-0 birthday. (oops, but in my defense I got married when I was 30 and then, well, fertility treatments made me gain all the weight I’d lost in that 29th year…let’s pretend I’m not still carrying that 60+ lb gain around today, ten years later!) It’s not just about the weight though. I’m an inconsistent exerciser. Always have been. Once I find something I like I can stick with it for a while, but if something changes to shift that around, I have a hard time getting back on track. I’m currently in one of the “find something I like to stick with” phase. I need to just get up on my treadmill and get it over with. Also, in this category is my family’s health – I’m responsible for feeding most of the people in my family so it’s up to me to make sure I plan and make healthy meals. I’ve gotten lazy with that the past two years and I need to get back to my meals planning and cooking, it just works better for all of us.

Personal – I’m frump girl. Remember that from My Big Fat Greek Wedding? I love that movie! But man, I could so relate to her when she said that. Being a work-at-home mom means I don’t have to really fix myself up much. I mean I get dressed (most days) and even put on shoes and brush my teeth, but my hair ends up in a wad on top of my head and make-up only gets put on if we’re heading to church or I’m going to a writer function. I don’t even really fix myself up most of the time on the rare occasions The Professor and I have a date. Often because it’s a last minute – my mom offers to watch the girls so we can go see a movie kind of thing. But I would like to make a bit more of an effort with myself, try to look my best or at least look groomed.

Parenting – I think this will probably be an ongoing to-do for me, for all of us, I’d wager. Most parents (the non meth-making in the bathtub variety) strive to be better. We want to be gentler, kinder, more nurturing. I want those things. I think most of the time I do an okay job, but lots of times I could do better. It’s those moments, I want fewer of. I know I’ll never be perfect at it, but I’ll know I’m successful if my girls feel about me the way I do about my own mom.

100_0282The lazy factor – okay I don’t know if it’s just laziness or if there’s more to it, but damn somedays I just don’t even want to get up off hte couch. Granted I sit for my job so there’s that. I’m used to sitting. I like sitting. And some days dealing with the girls is enough to make me want to just get horizontal. But its those days that become a problem – I don’t exercise, I don’t do dishes, I don’t cook, I’m so wrapped up in how exhausted (and stressed) I am that I just sit and let life zoom past me all the while my house is falling apart around me and laundry is eating the bedrooms. Okay that’s a slight exaggeration, but I’m sure you know what I mean. I hope you do, at least, otherwise, I’m a slug and I just admitted that to all of you.

So there you go, my would-be, personal to-do list before I turn 40. Do you make such lists before your birthdays? 

And I have to do a little self-promo because I have a new book out. So let’s all look at the pretty cover together and we can ooh and ahh. You can go here to find out more about the book.


Moms, I Think We Have a Problem

I was almost thirty when I realized I had an eating disorder. You might think it’s the kind of thing you know you have. You might think it’s the kind of thing that only affects teenage girls. And maybe that’s why I didn’t realize I was sick until I was really sick.

And maybe I didn’t realize I was sick because I was rewarded for being sick.

There are a lot of reasons women and men develop eating disorders, but it usually comes down to control. For me, it was an outgrowth of the powerlessness I felt in my life at the time. I couldn’t control my personal or my professional life—or at least I felt I couldn’t—but I could control my food and exercise. And I was really good at controlling my food and exercise. I lost a lot of weight, and I was praised over and over for looking so good that I was deathly afraid I’d gain it back. I had to lose a few pounds so I’d have a cushion. And then I needed a cushion for the cushion.

Before I knew it, I was about 100 pounds. I’m five-seven and not small boned. I looked like a Holocaust survivor. I knew I looked bad, but do you know what? No one told me I looked bad. I was still complimented and envied by many, many women. The most common comment I received was that I didn’t understand how hard it was to lose weight because it just came easily to me.

Little did people know how hard I worked to make it seem so easy. My weight, how much I exercised, and how much I ate were obsessions for me. I thought of little else. I couldn’t go out with friends because almost every social outing involved some sort of food or drink. I also devoted an enormous amount of time to exercise. Between exercise and work, I didn’t have time to socialize.


My whole life revolved around counting calories and making sure I ran a certain number of miles. I lived for weekends when I allowed myself to binge and then purge for two days. Mondays were brutal because I only consumed about 400 calories. It wasn’t atypical for me to gain nine or ten pounds over a weekend and lose it again within the week. When I finally got help, my lab results showed several of my systems were on the verge of shutting down.

At this point a few people did pull me aside and tell me they thought I had a problem. Of course I had a problem. By then it was too late for me to fix it on my own. I couldn’t even admit to myself I had a problem. If I admitted I had a problem, I’d have to fix it, and then I might gain weight. That kind of thinking could send me into a full-blown panic attack.

If you’ve met me, you can probably attest to the fact that I’m pretty much the same as anyone else. I have my bad habits and my quirks, but I’m just like you. I work. I take care of my family. I do laundry, run errands, see a movie once in a while. So why am I the one who ended up with anorexia and bulimia?

I used to ask myself that question all the time. But now the question I ask is how does any woman not end up with an eating disorder?