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How Not To Do It All

How Not To Do It All

The question I get asked a lot is “How do you do it all?”  I quickly try to regain my composure, because inside I am laughing and outside I am shaking my head. I then begin the story of how I absolutely do not.

I think of myself like a duck, Quack Quack. I am calm on the surface and paddling like mad under the water.

I think there is a belief from looking in the window of someone else’s life that the life/balance juggle is easier for some.  I don’t think any of it is easy.

The short answer for me is that I don’t.  I can’t do it all. I am just finally in a place where I am ok with tearing apart this illusion to show you behind the curtain.

I want to mentor and guide other women to create a life they love without compromising their lifestyle.  Most of the time, I am able to make an impact by clearing up food confusion so people, like you, feel educated about the foods to eat to get the weight off and keep it off.

The truth is, most of the weight loss has to do with emotional and psychological weight loss.  It is mental, so this piece of TRYING TO DO IT ALL is important to me to consider.

One of the biggest ways I can illustrate this is to discuss my big and little rocks.  The rocks are my priorities and the order of my values.


The big rocks:



One of the reasons I am most passionate about sharing CarpenterOne80 with the world is the freedom I found when I understood how exercise fits into the weight-loss equation.

I formerly believed that exercise was the way to control my weight.  I would sacrifice more than I care to admit to get the time in with cardio. I would punish myself, exercise hours a day, I felt exhausted, hungry, and miserable.

Now, I exercise because I like the particular exercise. I might work out 4 times a week, for 30 minutes a day.  It is about feeling strong, flexible, healthy, and maintaining lean muscle.

I work out to clear my head and benefit from the endorphins.  The time freedom from not spending so much time exercising has made this an important part of my weekly schedule but allows me to have more time with the people I love most.



This is first because this changed my daily everything.  When I learned to slow down and rank order my priorities, I found exceptional clarity.

DKC and I decided as a couple, our mission was to raise great adults, and we were 2 of those adults.  That has given us a TRUE NORTH our entire marriage.  Since we knew #raisinggreatadults was what we were about, having a spiritual life first, exceptional marriage second, then kids, then work, we have been able to keep the main thing the main thing.  We know what comes first.

This sounds easy.  Rest assured, it was not. It took time to decide on and commit to. It takes incredible effort and discipline to stay on track with.  Part of not doing it all, is realizing with the right priorities for our family, we simply cannot do it all.



I was raised in the church, I couldn’t hear anything. I showed up, I kept going, I was doing what I knew was right, but I was empty while I was there.  I still went, I took my family, we positioned ourselves to receive.

It was that for years.  The kids crawling in pews, passing out snacks, hoping to make it through service.

Eventually, it shifted.  I’ll skip all the middle part from nothing to everything.  The point is, the shift happened and God became #1 for DKC and for me,



I have to think about what I think about, above all things.  Learning to control my thoughts & everyday work strengthen my mental game is a big rock. It is a discipline, however, when I show up to this each day, I handle the little things that come my way so much better.


One of my adjustments:

There is so much comparison in the world and years ago I fell victim to the early days of @PotteryBarn Halloween costumes, @Pinterest first birthday parties, etc. Eventually, I realized that the pictures I was seeing were not my reality.  I had to be very practical and take this out of my screen time.  When I took the pressure off my shoulders of trying to keep up with this, I returned to a sense of peace and knowing that I was doing right for my family.  I needed to keep my eye on my own life (like we have to keep our eyes on our own paper at school).

As we enter the holiday season, I hope you find comfort and joy because you are also able to focus on the important things in your life.

If it is time for you to make yourself one of the priorities, if you think about losing weight all the time but haven’t been able to, if you’ve tried a variety of programs only to gain the weight back, if you feel sad or discouraged because this extra weight is holding you back, if you feel like losing weight will help you love yourself & your body… then consider joining my next small group.

I hope you create a lifestyle you love when you look and feel your very best and have weight loss without hunger. You’ll feel educated and understand how to balance your plate and how true weight loss and weight maintenance happens.  I so badly want to help you have food peace so that it permeates in all areas of your life!


Here’s to a Healthy Happy Holiday Season!

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Travel Snacks Small

Travel Snacks

Travel Snacks

It is not surprising that when I travel (or go anywhere for that matter) that I pack my staple foods, just like I would pack my staple tennis shoes, hairbrush, pj’s, makeup, etc.  When I travel, I take things with me that I know and love that is a part of how I do my life.  Food is no exception. I will certainly dine out, enjoy local favorites, but that is only a small part of the experience.

Imagine that you have sensitive skin and leave your makeup at home. It will be expensive to replace, time-consuming to find and purchase, and may not be what you are looking for… which could leave you with extra makeup that you don’t really want after you get home from the trip. That is the same for food and weight. If you don’t plan, you may not be presented with what best suits you. If you have to go looking in extra places (stores, restaurants, vending machines), you may not find what you are looking for, spend extra time and money (and frustration) looking for it, and possibly not find it. So, what you bring home could be unwanted extra pounds from unwanted foods. You know, when you are in vacay mode, the temptation to cut loose and go binge can be hard to resist.

I think of packing travel snack foods just like I would pack travel clothes and shoes that fit me!

This habit can help you to stave off little triggers of temptation that can set off a blood sugar spike and crash.

Here is my list of favorite travel snacks that save me time, money, and CALORIES!

  • GG Crackers
  • Salmon or Tuna Packets
  • Applegate Turkey Pepperoni
  • Laughing Cow Cheese
  • PB2
  • Almond Butter
  • All-Bran Buds
  • Nut Packs
  • Mini Fat Packs (like Wildflower Friends Almond Butter Packs)
  • Protein Powder
  • Unflavored Fiber

Other Perishable Snacks

  • Celery Slices (to dip in Almond Butter)
  • Fage Greek 0% yogurt


Pack your favorite protein powder and grab an iced coffee (no junk added) and mix that up!

If you are headed on a road trip, don’t forget a bowl and spoon. I am known to whip up yogurt, protein, & fiber powder, and PB2 while stopping for gas. This makes a huge portion, is filling, takes time to eat, and keeps me on track without cravings during long trips.

What are you packing for the summer road trip?

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PS…Here is a link to my favorite high fiber foods!  This is my go-to list of high fiber foods.  I’ll take the guess work out of what to buy, and save you time and money!

Originally posted 2020-06-20 08:00:26.


The Slice of White Bread Rule

The Slice of White Bread Rule

I see food broken down into slices of bread.  It’s my point of reference to gauge the carbohydrate density of the food.  1 slice of bread is my carbohydrate equivalency of food.  Here is what I mean and some examples.


It isn’t so much about counting calories.  The focus should be on net carbs.  By keeping net carbs low you have the carbs you need for energy, without gaining weight.  If you keep your net carbs low enough, your body will be in a position to burn fat for fuel.  It is important to track your net carbs, and it helps to have a visual of what a typical serving of carbohydrates looks like.  This is why I talk about the slice of white bread.


The trend is for people to understand calories and tracking them.  Carbohydrates seem to be more elusive and having a visual like a piece of bread helps people a better grasp.  A serving of carbohydrates is 15 grams.  We can picture 1 slice of white bread looks like, well it is 15 grams of carb, which is 1 serving.

Picture 2 slices of white bread.  It is 2 servings of carbohydrate.  2 slices of white bread is 15g X 2= 30 grams carbohydrate.  Picture 3 slices of white bread.  That’s 45 grams of carbohydrate (3 servings).

I bet you can’t remember the last time you ate 3 slices of white bread in one sitting.  That’s the point. 3 servings of white bread as an afternoon snack is an odd choice.  Imagine this, a grande soy latte is a typical afternoon pick-me-up.  It is socially normal, accepted, and seems reasonable to order one up.  There are many people who enjoy this 5 days a week, Monday through Friday.  Here is the tricky part.  A grande soy latte is 41 grams of carbs.  Picture that stack of 3 slices of bread, for an afternoon snack, it makes you think twice.


The slices of bread is a visual way to conceptualize whether a food has a lot of carbs (thus taking up a lot of room in your glycogen stores) or only a little.  The fewer carbs that you ingest, the lower your net carbs, giving your body a chance to burn fat for fuel.  In the absence of net carbs, your body begins to burn fat for fuel.

Understanding this is, well….It’s the greatest thing since sliced bread.

Remember a lot of foods contain carbs, and just because a food has carbs does not mean that it is bad for you and that you shouldn’t eat it.  It isn’t off-limits. You just need to compute how many slices of bread the food equates to and determine if it fits into your “Carb budget”.  Just because it has a high number of carbs doesn’t mean it’s bad or off-limits.

1 slice of white bread (15g carbs)

2 slices of white bread (30g carbs)

3 slices of white bread (45g carbs)


The carb content of food can be offset by fiber (total carb-fiber=net carb).  So, if a food has the carb equivalent to 3-4 slices of white bread, you can still have it with CarpenterOne80 so long as you have enough net carbs left not to exceed your daily carb allotment.  I typically stay below 35g net carbs for weight loss.  I stay below 75g for maintenance.  To really stretch the number of carbs you can eat, aim for foods with the most fiber.  The greater the portion of carbohydrates in a food that are actually fiber, the lower the net carb.  The lower the net carb, the greater your chances of burning fat for fuel.

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Top 3 cheap and easy Valentine’s Day Tips…keep your mind out of the gutter

Top 3 cheap and easy Valentine’s Day Tips…keep your mind out of the gutter

Do you remember when you were little? At the end of January your teacher would pass out the white doilies and construction paper , thus began the treasured task of making Valentines for everyone in your class!  I remember the coming holiday with so much anticipation and excitement because of the coming written words from fellow friends and classmates.

I can remember my fancy WHITE paper lunch bag that Mrs. Barkel, my 4th grade teacher, passed out to our class of 30 kids, for us to decorate and hang with scotch tape on the door to her coat closet.  We had to be sure to write our names REALLY BIG so that other children would be able to find our bag. I also remember having to go up in groups to drop the cards into each bag, hoping that I wouldn’t snag another child’s bag with my shirt sleeve, ripping it from the wall.

I dropped in my Valentines because I wanted so badly to get Valentines.. I wanted those words of affirmation so badly, I would read and re-read them. I saved them, put them under my bed, and would read them again on days when I needed a pick me up.  The only candy I recall is the red heart box from the Hallmark store that Lady Diana (Mom) would buy for each of us. I remember pushing my finger up from the bottom of the candy to see what kind of chocolate it was, I was looking for the caramel. The finger through the bottom of the chocolate method saved me from the awful surprise of biting into the fruity raspberry fluff chocolate.

What I really treasured and remember is that I got cards for Valentine’s Day; more specifically, handwritten cards with words on them.  Something that I have done in the past, and will do this year, are simple but so meaningful.


Every day leading up to Valentine’s day, write a SHORT note or kind word on a 3X5 card (you can fancy this up and make a heart or buy paper, but the sentiment is what is really important) and tape it on your child’s bedroom door (or bathroom mirror).  My kids left these up until the messages fell down. After a day or so, they started looking for them. I did this for DKC as well! He still has some of his up from the last time.


Lookup funnykidjokes.com and scratch out a short joke on an index card (or a napkin)  and pop it in their lunchbox. This makes for fun at the lunchroom table. Beware: once you start this, they will be hooked.  You might take a minute and write out a week’s worth of one liners so that you are never in a pinch.


Those who know me, know I love sending and receiving handwritten cards.  They can be simple, short, and so incredibly important to the person you send a card to, especially now that we can communicate so much faster with our phones.   Who do you have in your life that you appreciate, love, miss, feel grateful for/to? Perhaps you have a teacher, mentor, former colleague, old roommate, high school friend, or a family member who comes to mine.  That’s just the person you should send a note to.

Let the spirit of Valentine’s Day inspire you to get your pen out and write all the beautiful thoughts you are thinking…

Do you have any Valentine’s Day memories to share?

Originally posted 2020-02-09 02:53:12.

Goal Pants

The one tip to get you results faster than anything else!

The one tip to get you results faster than anything else!

Imagine the best version of yourself….what does she look like? Is she a little covered up in comfort food, emotional eating, and stress baking?

If you said yes, you are in good company.

Want a super practical tip to help you rediscover your ideal self?

Two words: GOAL PANTS

Head over to your closet and find that pair of pants that is one size too small and needs some wiggling to get into. These are your goal pants that you can try on every Monday (every morning if you need extra accountability)?

As you increase your fiber and journaling what you are eating, each Monday will be filled with encouragement as these pants fit better week by week.

One extra tip:
Shake off your negative feelings. Write down your goals each morning, journal what foods you plan to eat and track your fiber. This will help you remember that you want to avoid slip-ups!

You can do it!!!

Originally posted 2020-05-20 20:29:33.

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4 Ways to stay Motivated after January

4 Ways to stay Motivated after January

It’s all fun and games making New Year’s Resolutions.  It is another thing altogether when you are put to the test to see them through.

If you are like the rest of us, February 1 is when the excuses roll in.  ‘I’ll go to the gym tomorrow night.” or “The Bachelor is on, I’ll just have this Monday night glass of wine, tonight.”

That is my experience.

I had to take Resolutions into a different category if I was to see them through.  I changed them to intentions and had to do a little extra work to see them through.

Here is my 5 ways to keep motivated ALL YEAR LONG:

#TransparentWrite them down

I mean this. Every day, EVERY. SINGLE. MORNING. I roll out of bed, when I said I would the night before and stumble to my journal. Even if I only have 5 minutes. I scribble out what I am grateful for, my 10 goals (Resolutions/Intentions), and mantras (like…”What kind of person do I want to be 10 years from now? Show up today as her…”  that kind of thing).

#Transparent-2Do a Cleanse

Not a diet cleanse, but a comparison cleanse.  If you keep your eyes on your own paper (I am talking to myself here) you will be far happier if you stay in competition with yourself.  Go back to #1, keep your personal intentions fresh at all times, then go easy on the social media game. You will also find that 30 minutes added back into your day gives you more time to reach your Resolutions. Did you know that 30 minutes a day of mindless scrolling adds up to 22 missed workdays over the course of a year?

#Transparent-3Get a New Toy

If your budget can afford it, choose something that is worth fighting for and practice delayed gratification.  It could be, “Go to the gym 4 days this week, on the 5th day get the Starbucks” Work for something. Your confidence will SKYROCKET.

#Transparent-4Post It

I am a believer that you can achieve what the mind conceives.  I write my goals down and post them above my faucet on my bathroom mirror.  I write mantras that I want to remind myself of. I write goals. I do this because I never remember them first thing each morning.  Life is busy, crazy, and hard. I need these posted as reminders. All this work on the easier days makes determines what type of person will show up when life gets rocky and resolutions are likely to be forgotten.

What do you do to stay motivated?

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Originally posted 2020-01-26 02:38:45.

Have the cookie

Kisses for Cookies

Kisses for Cookies

I get asked by friends and clients if I regulate what my kids eat. The answer, NO! I don’t monitor what they order, I don’t monitor their snacks, but I do feed them dinner (high fiber/protein), & I buy healthy (high fiber/low sugar ) foods. I control what is in the house, but I do not comment on what they eat. I want each of them to have a healthy relationship with food. Having to sneak because they worry about my comments is going the wrong direction.

I lead by example, quietly. They see how I eat when no one is looking but them. They know why I eat the way I teach in CarpenterOne80. It’s getting in them.

We have pizza here. Yes, I encourage that they start with a salad. Do they? Not as often as I want them to, but the idea is presented. They are watching me eating the salad (pizza is not a trigger for me, I usually skip it or only eat the toppings). I make the cookies. I love to make the cookies. I don’t often eat them, because I don’t make my favorites (extra heavy on chocolate chips). I make their favorite which is milk chocolate chip cookies. They will do what you do. I think my kids would tell you that I like how I eat. Good enough, for now!

Kids need to be around foods they love and learn a healthy moderation. It comes from practice and modeling. Parents, you are the nutritional gatekeepers. Yes, it’s a responsibility, but you can do it and you can get better at it each day.

To get you started, here a few of the lunchbox snacks that I keep in our house for the kids

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Dec Pace

December Pace – Why it’s a blessing

December Pace – Why it’s a blessing

Let’s face it: December requires us, girls, to show up with even more awesome than other months of the year.  I would argue that the only month to rival December would be May, but that is for another conversation.

Here is how I look at the month of December: I deal with real-life then, with a big GULP, admit that my to-do list just doubled or tripled in size.  I have to do all my normal things then add in add being cheery, decorating, baking, extra hosting, cards, shopping, ribbon, and wrapping on top (to name only a few).

We are aware that New Year’s Eve is looming and that January 1 and Resolutions is right around the corner.  I want to propose a new way of looking at December in preparation for the coming year.

Choose to see all the December distractions, additions, I see the activities as a blessing because you are so busy. This is the one month every year that I set my intentions to follow #one80eating day in and day out, I absolutely enjoy the day of Christmas (or Christmas Eve) and New Year’s. Other than that, we are too busy to mindlessly eat, nosh, splurge. There is too much to be done.

Here is what it requires of you: groceries and being boring.  Grab your protein powder, basil seeds, and cashew milk and have your smoothie each breakfast. Lunch, have the salad!  Have the big salad (a side of GG’s to help fill you up), make your bridge snack simple with 4 GG Crackers and a pouch of nut butter (keep this in the car) or another ½ smoothie, and dinner can be a salad with some protein with grilled veggies.

Done.  You choose the flair, you input the ingredients, but that is my December boring basic food list that keeps me fueled through the month.

Since there is so much to do, and little time to eat because you are bored or looking for something to do, this could be one of the easier times to stay on track.

Want some party tricks?

  • Water-wine-water (repeat)
  • Hold the glass in your non-dominant hand
  • Drink a ½ smoothie before you go in to offset your hunger
  • Choose 3 bites of anything that looks to die for, find fiber for the rest.

You have got this.  You can do December different.  You can make this the first New Years where you are well on your way to reaching your goals, not just starting out!

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Originally posted 2019-12-22 17:29:35.

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Have you ever thought about using your phone alarm for more than a wake-up call?

Have you ever thought about using your phone alarm for more than a wake-up call?

New Decade vision

For me, #one80eating is not just about losing weight, lowering cholesterol, and managing blood pressure.  It is understanding that I don’t have to settle in and unhealthy lifestyle, bodyweight… It applies to NOT having to settle in life, friendships, career.

Don’t have to settle for mediocrity when greatness exists.  If I see something that needs to be changed, change it. Don’t have to be stuck.  The change will come with sacrifice. We all have the ability to change. Don’t have to be stuck.  The change will be uncomfortable, it will require being mindful, and take time and resources…but positive change is possible.

If your perception of what you get is worth what it is that you are giving up you will find it worth it.  When you look back on your life, you want no regrets. Do you like your life, career, friendships work, are you kind and philanthropic as you can be?   Are you at your personal best at work? Do you feel your personal best? If the answer is no, think about why that is and think about the steps to take.

Think about your best self. What does that person look like, sound like.  Envision the relationships you will have, career, the family you will have..  Picture the life you want for your self. Every day you have the opportunity to live up to that and take a step closer.   Some days you may be undermining that.

Becoming the better version takes habits and reminders.  I have my phone set with alarm reminders to be “PRESENT, CALM & at PEACE”.  I have another reminder set in my phone to remind me to be, “BOLD, CONFIDENT, & DYNAMIC.”  These phone reminders go off in the middle of the day, the alarm makes me look at my phone, and I am SHOCKED at how much I need to be reminded of these intentions. I can honestly say, that I am most often NOT doing what these reminders say when they come in.  They reorient my thoughts. These alarms are helping me to create and sustain the habits that are needed to create the life I want.

When I married DKC (almost 24 years ago), I wore diamond studs. They symbolized change, elegance, and that we were starting a life of our dreams. Every single day,  I wear those diamond earrings as a physical reminder that I am living MY best life. There are plenty of hard & unfancy days that I have to choose to remember that. The earrings are simply a physical reminder to myself.  It doesn’t have to be diamond earrings for you, these are what I already had, and I had an intention with them on our wedding day. I’m just giving an example of using something you have near you every day and attaching a deep personal meaning to it.

What do you have in place to keep you focused forward on your vision for your life?

It is one thing to visualize it, it’s another to put action behind the vision.  This is a new DECADE, a fresh chance at making new habits that can change your life forever.  I hope it encourages you to know that it’s the little discipline repeated frequently that makes great change happen.

Like Tony Robbins says, “People overestimate what they can do in a month, and underestimate what they can accomplish in a year.”  Let’s set you up for 2020 to be the start of a different kind of Decade, the getting things done, kind of decade.

Originally posted 2019-12-29 19:33:46.

You are what you eat. So don’t be fast, easy, cheap, or fake

Is it emotional eating or is it hunger? Do you know the difference?

Is it emotional eating or is it hunger? Do you know the difference?

No more commute time AND skipping Spanx & pointy shoes.  While Covid is not how we wanted to go about taking time off from those things, here we are.  Our heels have been traded for gym shoes, Spanx for slippers and tennis shoes, and fast lunches for pantry snacks.  This might feel like a really pleasant change; however, this shift will cause many people to re-evaluate how they structure their days to stay healthy.

Obviously, a big part of being healthy while stuck at home is diet (pattern of eating).  It isn’t just what you eat, but how much, when, and WHY.  Physical hunger does play into eating habits, but  most of us eat because of emotional hunger.  It’s normal, and our emotions are really high right now because of the pandemic.  Basically, emotional hunger leads to eating because we are responding to our feelings rather than physical hunger.

The problem with emotional eating is that it leads to overeating, increased frequency, and/or craving specific junk foods or comfort foods.  So, it’s normal, we all do it, and it is often triggered by stress, anxiety, depression, and boredom. It can also be a way to distract ourselves (or avoid) other emotions we don’t want to feel and can easily become a habit.

It can be tricky to identify if it is emotional eating or physical hunger.  Here are 3 ways to tell if what you are feeling is emotional hunger:

#TransparentIt comes on REALLY FAST

The urge to snack or eat comes on really fast if it is emotional hunger.  Physical hunger comes on gradually. If you suddenly find yourself craving food, check-in:

  • When was the last time you ate?
  • Was it one hour or several hours ago?

If you last ate a protein, fat, & fiber meal an hour ago and you are hungry, it might be emotionally driven.

#Transparent-2Feeling full doesn’t last

Sadly, emotional hunger doesn’t leave you feeling full and satisfied for long.  That’s because the food you eat really isn’t solving what you are really hungry for.   If it is boredom, food gives you something to do, but only for a few minutes.  If it is anxiety, you may feel calm while you eat, but then…regret for overeating. It does not ease and calm anxiousness.  To really satisfy emotional hunger, it’s worth identifying the underlying negative emotions and then addressing them.

#Transparent-3You won’t feel it in your stomach!

This is fascinating and probably the biggest tell between emotional and physical hunger.

Emotional hunger isn’t felt in the stomach.  Physical hunger has a sign we all recognize, our stomach growls and there is a gnawing if we go too long without food.  Did you know that we feel the rumbling and the sound we hear is actually audible because there is no food to buffer the sound?  What you hear are the organ and muscular activity. Emotional hunger is coming from our thoughts, not our bodies.


Because emotional eating is triggered by thoughts and not our bodies (biology), it is easy to get trapped in an emotional eating cycle.  Boredom can lead to larger quantities & increased frequency… which can create feelings of guilt. To minimize the guilt feelings, we might reach for a treat to soothe us (temporarily). This is where food and emotions feed the emotional eating cycle.  It makes sense that since so many people are suddenly under chronic stress, it would be more difficult to mindfully change our behaviors since there seem to be so many more triggers.

Is emotional eating something you are struggling with?  If yes, you are not alone. This is a big part of what I work on with clients.  SOS  will educate WHAT to do, and as you see success, we begin to tackle what gets in the way of consistency, which is one of the biggest problems is emotional eating.  The good news is, when done right and with the right person, you can get back on track to eating for physical hunger MORE OFTEN than eating for emotional hunger.

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Originally posted 2020-04-25 13:32:01.