Cold Water, Warm Smiles: #MySundayPhoto

Look, I’m back for the second #MySundayPhoto post in a row! Exciting, right?

Well, I’m excited.

Avery and I have been going to our neighborhood pool every day of the week lately. The water is still pretty cold, so we are always the only ones there, but we don’t care one bit. Cold exposure, i.e. cold thermogenesis actually hosts quite a bit of health benefits, so why not share the wealth health with my daughter?

#MySundayPhoto, swimming, cold thermogenesis, pool, kids, parenting

After 20 to 30 minutes, she’s shivering but still says she wants to stay in the pool. That’s when I say just a few more minutes and then out we go. She doesn’t fight it, and is happy once wrapped in the towel. I’m loving this time with her and we’re so proud of her swimming by herself, with floaties, of course.

Big thanks to Darren and his fun #MySundayPhoto linkup. Be sure to check out his blog full of beautiful pics and maybe share your own #MySundayPhoto!


It’s Happening: Lose Atrophy, Gain A Nerve

After being tossed around (aka referred to) by doctor after doctor, I finally have an official date to fix my entrapped nerve. I shared the details of the long road to diagnosing the reason for my severe atrophy of the right infraspinatus and supraspinatus muscles in this post, and finally found a doctor confident enough to hopefully fix my nerve. I guess you could say, he’s got nerve. eh, eh?

The issue seems to be an inflamed ligament in one of the shoulder joints which is causing an impingement on my suprascapular nerve running through it. This, in turn, is not allowing the nerve to signal any growth to my muscles past the impingement. Hence the atrophy. I already shared a pic of my caved in shoulder blade in the other post, so I’ll spare my three readers a repeat visual. You’re welcome, Gary.

Surgery will commence on June 22nd. It will be a day procedure and hopefully I’ll be on my way to recovery quickly thereafter. Of course, the following onslaught of medical related bills might put both my wife and me under! Nah, we have good insurance, it’ll be more like a little needle prick to draw blood. It sucks, but hopefully it’s for a good cause…..fixing me.

Going Mom is doing good about trying to keep me in good spirits since I know I will lose the ability for a lot of the things I do daily. Playing with Avery or simply picking her up to go potty or play helicopter around the house will be out. And lifting weights? Nope, at least not for 3 months.

It’ll be hard to do lower body lifting since things like squats and deadlifts require the use of your shoulders too. At least I can do lower-only riding on the new Schwinn Airdyne we bought. But again, Airdyne “workouts” with Avery will be out for a while.

I expect to do lots of walking and body weight moves like squats, lunges, karate Ninja Turtle kicks (hey, why not?), and maybe sit ups. We’ll see, I’m sure I can get creative, I’ll drive myself crazy otherwise. I mean, I am Going Dad afterall. What’s going to drive me absolutely nuts though, is the lack of playtime with Avery. So much of what we do when we play involves having a good set of arms and shoulders. Just one won’t cut it for (safely) turning your kid into a helicopter. And going high in the sky while swimming just ain’t happening this summer.

A video posted by RC Liley (@going_dad) on

Okay, after the soon approaching surgery that is. Her laugh is infectious! In a good way.

But like my wife keeps saying, this might be just what I need to actually focus on gaining some healthy weight (it’s been one of my goals for years), letting my entire body heal from day after day of high intensity exercise, and starting fresh. I won’t be dormant by any means, but heavy lifting is obviously out. I’ll admit that I could use the break, and am kind of excited about having the chance to start over in a sense.

As long as I can type, I’ll be sure to share my progress and what I’m finding to keep me sane. With the love and support of my mom, wife, and Avery, I am positive I’ll be good to go in no time. Maybe the help of a physical therapist as well. Oh, and as Avery says, healing hugs and kisses help too.

nerve surgery, atrophy, parenting, dad, toddler,

We have a family beach vacation coming up. Right when we return is when I’m having the surgery, so I’m going to make the most of it and toss that cutie all around. Safely of course. 🙂

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FitVine Wine Cabernet Sauvignon Review

Going Mom and I shared a bottle of Sauvignon Blanc from FitVine Wine the other week, you can read my review here. We both agreed on it being easy-to-drink dry, yet crisp, white wine good for almost any occasion, but our thoughts differed on FitVine’s Cabernet Sauvignon.

FitVine Wine, cabernet sauvignon, healthy, drinking, alcohol,

FitVine describes their Cab as follows:

Classic Cabernet nose of currant, lavender, black licorice and a hint of new oak. Rich purpose soft tannins wrap around flavors of cedar, boysenberry and coffee, chocolate with a hint of leather. Full flavored, clean taste with a smooth finish.

As mentioned in my review of their Sauvignon Blanc, I’m no connoisseur, but I have trained my palate well enough to know to stay clear of Boone’s Farm. Upon pouring the freshly opened bottle into a glass, I quickly picked up on the subtle hint of currant. I sipped, tipped my head back, and took a light breath while holding the wine in the back of my throat and could taste a dry, slightly earthy flavor.

FitVine Wine, cabernet sauvignon, healthy, drinking, alcohol,

The aftertaste was the same leaving a pleasantly clean finish. My verdict was that I enjoyed everything from the first sip to the last. To me it’s a good wine to have with chicken or a steak at dinner. Or, as I prefer, on its own after dinner.

Would a sommelier offer this to someone at a fine dining establishment? Most likely not, but I’m not one for fine dining, I enjoy cooking at home, and I’ll happily choose FitVine Wine’s Cabernet Sauvignon on the rare occasion that I drink.

My wife, on the other hand, was not as pleased, saying it left a “weird taste” in her mouth. Like me, she’s no connoisseur. so she can’t explain in wine terms like what the tannins were like or how earthy undertones rolled off her palate in the wrong way, but she knows what she knows. As the husband, I’ve learned not to question still push my luck sometimes, so I insisted on another glass. Seriously, who can turn down this face?

FitVine Wine, cabernet sauvignon, healthy, drinking, alcohol,

Not Going Mom, that’s for sure. Good thing, because she ended up at least enjoying it more and admitted she’d drink it again. Phew, as a lightweight I need my wife to help me share a bottle…..over the course of a couple days. Hey, told you I was a lightweight!

With their fermentation process resulting in less residual sugars, higher antioxidants, less sulfites, and grapes with no pesticides, FitVine has just what any healthy, active individual would want in an alcoholic drink. The less sugar means a drier wine, so if you like the sweet stuff, don’t expect it to be here. But we could all use a little less sugar anyway, so give it a try!

Having had the Cabernet Sauvignon and Sauvignon Blanc thus far, I am positive the average person would content with either choice depending on their preference for white or red wine. If you’re not a wine lover, go for the Sauvignon Blanc, chances are it’ll surprise you.

Last in the lineup for my wife and I to try is the Chardonnay. As always, once we do, you can read about our thoughts right here. Be sure to check out FitVine for yourself and be sure to connect with them on Twitter, Facebook, and Instagram.

FitVine Wine sent me their wine free of charge in exchange for my honest review. I was not compensated in any other way.

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Toddler Talk: Nipples and Swimming

Our daughter is at the age where her toddler talk has us cracking up. constantly. I’m upset I didn’t start writing some of our conversations down earlier. Well, I did mention how well-versed she is with human anatomy already, but now it’s time to document some good ones in a post.

toddler talk, cute, kids, parenting, funny, humor

She’s giving Going Mom and I enough material to make several posts per day, but for now, I’ll stick to just once a week of something good. Maybe I’ll include more than once conversation on some, but today it’s just one quick discussion I had with Avery. And yes, it has to do with both nipples and swimming.

For context, I was in a hurry trying to make good on my promise that we’d go to the pool if she behaved at the store. Well, she behaved, but it was getting close to lunch before nap time. After going potty (her, not me), the conversation went like this…

Me: Okay, good job, Avery, now lets wash our hands and get ready for a quick swim.

Avery: Ooooo, I both pee and poop!

Me: Wow, you did, good job dear! Do you want to flush?

Avery: Yes!!  <—- it’s like a reward for her to get to flush

Me: *toilet flushing* Okay, now we need to wash our hands.

Avery and Me: Singing Itsy Bitsy Spider as we wash.

Me: Now, since this will be a quick swim, I’m not going to put your swim shirt on, okay? You can just be shirtless like daddy! <—-the thing is kinda of tight and she cries every time I work it over her head, so just not worth the trouble for 10 minutes of swimming.

Avery: Yes. We can have nipples!

Me: *laughing* Yes, dear, we can have nipples.

Avery: Daddy has hairy nipples.

Me: True, they are kind of hairy….

I went on to explain how guys usually have hair on the chest and belly. She said something about standing on her froggy stool and then we went for a quick swim. The result?

Swimming by herself_smiles

Yeah, she’s loving it. No one else is going to our neighborhood pool since it’s been cloudy outside and fairly cold, so we get it to ourselves every visit so far. She’s already swimming by herself with her floaties and you can tell how proud she is for the feat.

Do you document the funny things your kid says?

Care to share any?

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I See Me! Personalized Children’s Books Review & Giveaway

“What book do you want to read tonight?”, Going Mom and I ask our daughter each night before she goes to sleep plays around singing out loud for 30+ minutes before finally giving in. “Goodnight Little Avery” has been her answer for several weeks now, even for naptime.

I See Me! Personalized Children's Books, reading, kids, gift, gifts

We have many books to choose from, but this one from I See Me! is different from the rest. I See Me! makes personalized children’s books to bring your kid into their very own story of magic, wonder, adventure, and, in our case, sweet dreams.

Goodnight Little Avery is from I See Me!’s Goodnight Little Me Storybook, just one of 100+ personalized books just waiting to star your kid as the main character. We all love reading this book to Avery as every high quality page is filled with beautiful illustrations and words to amaze and delight those curious little eyes.

I See Me! Personalized Children's Books, reading, kids, gift, gifts, custom, customized

We even catch her reading it by herself sometimes. I think her infatuation with the moon is what really draws her into this book as it’s on every page, just like her very own name. I’m sure the fact that the illustrations are created by Mary GrandPré, the illustrator of the Harry Potter series, helps a little too.

I See Me! Personalized Children's Books, reading, kids, gift, gifts, custom, customized

Personalized storybooks created by I See Me! help to encourage your little ones to read as they recognize letters and learn to spell their own names at same time. When children see their own name and picture (if you choose the option) this helps build self-esteem by making them feel special for having a book with them as the main character.

I See Me! Personalized Children's Books, reading, kids, gift, gifts, custom, customized

Want more options than a nighttime book? No problem. I See Me! has books with themes like animals, adventure, ballet, dinosaurs, fairies, farm, garden, love, outer space, pirates, princess, sports and things that go. You’re sure to find several books your kid will absolutely love, and you will too.

These books make the perfect option for gits to celebrate birthdays, going to school, new baby sister/brother, Christmas, or just because they’re books and your kid will be reading. When ordering, you simply fill out info needed for I See Me! to put your child into their very own story like name, date of birth, gender, and you can even leave a dedication. Going Mom and I chose to dedicate it from Mommy and Daddy.


Pretty cool if you ask me. Just don’t ask me what year our daughter was born, because apparently I don’t know! She was born in 2013, not 2014 like I entered for her book. In the words of Homer Simpson.. Doh!

But no worries, I See Me! has a 100% satisfaction guarantee, and will replace a book at no charge if lost or stolen during shipping, or only charge 50% of original product price plus shipping if you need to change the personalization options. Which, as you can tell, I needed to do, and I See Me! delivered a new book with the right date!

Avery, my wife, and I are extremely impressed with the overall looks and quality of this wonderful book and we want to get more for Avery to read soon. Maybe this time I’ll add the optional photo for Avery to see…um, Avery in her very own adventure book!

I See Me! Personalized Children's Books, reading, kids, gift, gifts, custom, customized

You can even find personalized growth charts, lunch boxes, coloring books (how cool is that?!), stickers, and more on I See Me!’s site. I strongly urge you to check out all they have to offer, and afterward, come back here to enter a giveaway to win a personalized storybook for that precious kid in your life.

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Visit I See Me! on Facebook, Twitter, Pinterest, and Instagram to keep up to date with the latest news and products. Good luck!

Disclosure: I received the Goodnight Little Me storybook for free in exchange for my honest review. All words are my own and I was not compensated in any other way.

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I'm a health conscious stay-at-home dad looking for products that keep us fit, happy, and healthy. Follow along as I share our experience and discoveries with my daughter as a side-kick.

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