Valentine’s Day Roundup with #AAF, #FTSF and #TenThings

I’m doing another swap with the Turn it Up Tuesday creator and co-host, Natasha of Epic Mommy Adventures today. Her site helps single parents deal with and succeed at single parenting, co-parenting and other parenting/relationship advice. She will be asking me questions in today’s “Ask Away Friday.”

Natasha Epic Mommy Adventures


What is #AskAwayFriday? Well…
#AskAwayFriday was created by the amazing Penny from Real Housewife of Caroline County and Amber from Bold Fit Mom, as a way to connect with other bloggers with a great Q & A session of 10 questions and 10 answers, between two bloggers! This is a wonderful opportunity to get to know others while allowing others to get to know you and of course there is also the added bonus of making great friends along the way which is one of the best parts of this online world! Ask me if you want to swap!

We are sad to be losing Amber as one of our amazing co-hosts, as she is working to pursue other business ventures and focusing her attentions on her fitness ventures. We wish her nothing but the best, and hope for her thriving success!

When one door closes, another one opens…and we would like to give a huge Ask Away Friday welcome to a brand new co-host…drum roll please…Welcome Echo from The Mad Mommy! She is both a friend and a fellow blogger. I dig her.


Now welcoming our wonderful #AskAwayFriday hosts…
Tamara from Tamara Like Camera,
Tiffany from Mrs. Tee Love Life Laughter,
Christy from Uplifting Families,
Stacey from This Momma’s Ramblings
Echo from The Mad Mommy
Grab our brand new button, follow our amazing hosts, hop through the great link ups and make some new friends!

Be sure to read Natasha’s answers to my romance questions HERE. And here are my answers to her questions:


1. Love your new series, “Oh My! How Things Have Changed!” What are some things that have changed since you became a parent? Wow! Too many things to list… which is why I started the vlogging series! Let’s start a short list:
  • Being able to sleep through the night (regardless of whether the kids are under the same roof)
  • Being able to work out on my own schedule
  • Being able to go out with friends… for the most part I’m home by 10, 11 if I push it!
Those are just to start! So, don’t forget to jump in on my vlog and and let me know how things have changed for you!
2. What do you like most about politics? What would you change if you could? I love that you can effectuate change. There are a lot of things that I want to change, but it’s hard. I would like to change people’s mindset about politics. I wish people didn’t grasp hold of a party and hold on for dear life as if everything that party said was correct. I wish people would listen objectively to the politicians and make the best decision for their situation.
3. What is one thing that you could change if you could? In life? I wish I was much more wealthy. I stress a lot about money and have since I was about 14. I wish I had enough money that money was not a consideration. We’re getting there… using the Financial Peace University.
4. What do you enjoy most about being a stay-at-home mom? Watching the craziness of my kids and being able to enjoy it. I wasn’t a SAHM with my son and I can honestly say that I don’t remember much about him learning or his idiosyncrasies. He would come home one day and know something and come home the next and know something else. Some days, I was in a whirlwind about his consistent growth and very sad about how much I missed in his learning.
February Craziness
5. What is your goal in getting fit? How are you working to achieve your goal? I want to be between 150 and 170 pounds. I don’t really know how much yet because I felt great at 150, but the doctor asked me “Why so little? You’d do better at 170 based on your body type.” I have to determine as I get close to the goal, how I feel. I’m dieting and exercising. Ultimately there are no true short cuts. You have to choose a plan and commit to it. I’m cutting calories and walking 10,000 steps a day at least three times a week.
6. What made you decide to transition from 100lb Countdown to April Noelle for your blog? What inspired the change? I’d been considering it for a long time. I just hadn’t done it. I hadn’t really blogged strictly or even mainly about weight loss in over a couple of years. I think what really made me make the change was that all of the sponsors and/or contributors just wanted to talk about weight loss. Even on this blog hop, I was constantly being asked about my weight loss fanatisism and how I can get others to lose weight. For the most part, I started 100lb Countdown to keep myself accountable. I know it sounds selfish, but it wasn’t about helping anyone else. I don’t mind spreading information that works, since so many of us are in the struggle, but I didn’t like being pigeonholed as that “weight loss girl”.
7. What are you looking forward to doing this year? Any big plans? I’m really hoping to get my business off the ground. I just need time and focus. I want to help girls get their financial minds in order before they grow up and have to take on the big decisions, including college, marriage, kids, cars and homes. I want them to have them all, but with little to no debt! Yep, I’m talking about the house too!

8. Where do you see yourself 10 years from now? 20 years from now? In 10 years, I’ll be in my mid-forties. I see myself in a different home, twice the size that we’re in now. I see us debt free with two teenagers and a college student. My business would be running successfully for 9 years and I’m ready to make a splash for year 10. In 20 years, I hope to have a team that can take over, so my husband and I can travel more, including seeing our kids, hopefully in different places or near home.
9. What is one moment that you are looking forward to experiencing with each of your children? With Bunny, my son, graduation from college. I want to see what direction he chooses to take, whether it be more creative or analytical. With Bee and Butterfly, I would love to see them get married. I would love to see where they are in their lives and whether we lead them down the right path. I think all three of my children will get married, I just don’t know if Bunny’s fiance will allow me to help! LOL!
10. If you had all the time and money in the world, what would you do? I would spend more time just playing with my girls. I would take them around and really explore our “new” surroundings. I would take them to the movies, museums, theaters and give them some play time with friends through day care. With my son, I would put him in a variety of sports and academic clubs to help him excel. I would also stimulate his artistic mind and get him involved at the local art club. For my relationship, I would make sure that we had a regular date night and vacations, whether it be for a weekend or a week. I would also take my husband and kids to travel the world to learn about other people and cultures, especially giving everyone new experiences besides these here at home.

This one time… at band camp! I can’t help but think of that end to that sentence, but alas, I’ve never been to band camp, so I don’t have any cool stories from there.
This one time, I had writer’s block. Yep, just one time and it’s now. Most of this post has been finished since Wednesday when I had the bright idea to so all three Friday blog hops, especially since I hadn’t done FTSF in a while. Now , it’s Saturday night and it’s not up yet.I talk all of the time and could not think of one “This one time…” story. Not one.

Of course, as I’m trying to finish this on my phone, I start thinking about a couple, like the time I saw a get knocked out while my mother was at a frat party, the time I got the weird sexually explicit phone call I received when I was a kid or the one time I couldn’t find a place to poop. But it’s already at 8:30 p.m. on Saturday, so let me know which story you would like to hear, and I’ll write about it on a future FTSF!

This has been another edition of Finish the Sentence Friday!

Today is Friday, and I can’t even pretend that I’m not incredibly thankful!
Ten Things of Thankful
1. Bee does not get in our bed at night. Of course, I’m sleeping on the floor in her room, but we’re talking baby steps right?
2. I’m a stay at home mom. I watch my daughters learn and grow every day, the good and the bad.
3. I have continued my “Be Uncomfortable” challenge and made my second and third vlog!
4. I am still getting entries for my Relationships in the Raw series. It has opened my eyes and my heart. I didn’t know what it would bring, but I am seeing changes in my personal life reading these stories.
5. I have a newly minted 11 year old! Watching him grow has been a journey for him and me. It has blessed me more than anyone could ever know.
6. Fridays! Long weeks followed by short weekends. As I read in Lisa’s post for the One Word Challenge, busy has just become the new normal!  Who said that was ok? Wait, this is a thankful post, so back to the positive!
7. Friends! I’ve been making more online and IRL friends, which is part of my “Be Uncomfortable” challenge too.
8. My family! They give me many many reasons to wake up everyday and love on them, hug them and kiss them!
9. Being in love! Although we aren’t doing anything for Valentine’s Day, I’m thankful that I’m not alone and I have someone who cares deeply for me.
Happy Valentine’s Day to all!
10. Most of all, I’m thankful that this post is over and I get to go to sleep! The girls are with their grandparents so I’ll be able to sleep ALL.THE.WAY through the night!

81 thoughts on “Valentine’s Day Roundup with #AAF, #FTSF and #TenThings”

  1. Hi April: it sounds like you’re in the middle of lots of positive transitions — good for you! The story ideas you mentioned would all work well for FTSF, and I think that the next topic has to do with compassion. I’m looking forward to seeing what you write!

  2. Wow! That was a long one but worth the read! I love your business idea! REALLY? this FTSF was your only writers block ???? Ever???? Amazing!

    1. Nope. I always have something to say… not to say it’s always Shakespeare (or ever Shakespeare), but it’s always something. Normally, if I sit on it for a day or two, I’ll be ready to go!

  3. Well I want to know “what” got knocked out at the frat party. I think a word is missing there? 😉 And neat that never made the connection that you were 100lb countdown. Love the new YOU blog name.

  4. I’m linked up with the Ten Things of Thankful and it’s nice to read your combined post. I have to say the FTSF certainly has my curiosity piqued. Sometimes the stories you imagine are much more graphic than real life.

  5. What a great way to participate in all of the Friday hops! I’d like to hear about all of your “this one time” stories (and the band camp line stuck with me too). I’m glad you did AAF with this as well because I love your business idea and the new blog – at first I was like wait, what? This is April! Does she have two blogs? Did I know that? 🙂

    1. LOL! Nope, I haven’t closed out the other blog yet because I need to pull down posts and make sure I get some of the posts up here, especially the reviews. But I won’t be posting anything new there.

  6. God I consider being out of the house past seven thirty a late night. I like to be in the house no later than six pm. We are in bed by eight pm…eight thirty is staying up late.

    I think you need to aim for what you are comfortable with. It’s more fun to put weight back on if you need to. I have lost about twenty pounds in the last six months with walking four miles twice a week.

    We don’t normally do anything special for valentines day but yes being in love is definitely a thankful

  7. Awesome! I love what you did here. I also combined two things this week – my Friday Five and the FTSF link-up. Good fun.
    I think this is my first time on your blog so I didn’t know the blog before the change. I’m thinking about a revamp on my own – nice to know others do it,too!
    Have to agree that any kind of post or interview where bloggers get to share answers is a great way to get to know one another. Enjoyed the read here!

  8. I like the sounds of you “Be Uncomfortable” challenge. It’s good to break out of our comfort and try something new! Sounds like you are doing plenty of new things.

    Happy birthday to your son.

    Hope you got plenty of sleep last night. 🙂

  9. Haha! Another on the floor of our children’s room sleeper! I am not alone in doing this. My back however does not appreciate this change up. I think I should just go ahead and get an inflatable mattress that I can lay on in there! P.S. I think we need to hear the knock out story next time!

    1. My back doesn’t either. I think about the inflatable since we have one, but then I have a feeling that both of my girls will just end up on the floor with me instead of their beds. Even they like their beds more than the floor!

  10. Robin Rue (@massholemommy)

    Now that my kids are a bit older (7 & 10), they sleep through the night – it’s my husband that keeps me awake with his snoring.

  11. I love that you changed your blog theme and think it works perfectly for you. And am very much enjoying the changes around here now. I also am with you on so much that you said about being a SAHM and could definitely more then relate, too 😉

    1. Mine are 3 and 15 months so we are WELL over the 1 year mark! I blame it on the 3 year old. She’s such a terrible sleeper, and now the 15 month has gotten into the habit of waking in the middle of the night.

  12. I am so pleased I am not the only one who always thinks ‘at band camp’ and also no I have never been myself either – though I used to go to music school on a Saturday lol. x

  13. My family has started off on a really tough time so far this year. It has been one bad thing after another. My 10 things would be my husband gets a new job, healthy family, to make good financial decisions, we do not have to move, etc.

  14. I stress about money a lot. Like an embarrassing amount of time. Before I read this, I was checking my bank account and nearly crying!
    I like what your doctor said, by the way. About honoring your body type.
    And I Love that you changed your blog theme. It suits you!

    1. I do too! I’mm sure it’s an unhealthy amount. I had to have my husband take over the finances just so I didn’t feel compelled to nag him about every dollar spent. Thank you. I like the theme, but there are so many small changes that I want to do, it’s getting there!

    1. I think everyone worries about money, just the worry is different, about making it, investing it, saving it, donating it. I just wish my student loan wasn’t such a big part of my budget!

  15. I think the blog theme change is great. I used to have “Thrifty” in my URL and only got sponsors and visitors wanting to know how to save money! I love helping people save money, but I also want to talk about cooking and crafts. It’s so easy to pigeonhole yourself on accident.

  16. Sleep through the night is something I really miss most! My youngest is 11 and I still wake up almost every night listening for them. It didn’t help that she didn’t sleep through the night once until she was 6, so I am completely trained in waking every night, I think!

  17. I enjoyed reading your answers to the questions and your Ten Things of Thankful list.
    I went back to work when my son was 4 mos old and worked until he was 2. I feel like I missed a lot, too, like the time when he was just over 4 months old and I sat him up to take a quick pic of him in his Halloween costume, and he put his little hand out and held himself up. Did he learn that at daycare?
    Glad you were able to join us.

    1. Isn’t that the case? You wonder, did someone teach you or did you learn it with someone else? I feel so blessed to be home with them right now. I hope to continue joining you!

  18. I loved your list of what you are thankful for. I can related to many of them but I can always relate to being thankful for my family.

    1. If I could just be student loan debt free, I’d be SO much happier. I don’t need endless amounts, I don’t have anything to buy really, I just hate stressing about the debt.

  19. Good luck to Amber, welcome to Echo! And good luck to you with getting your business goals met this year too. Love your pictures, and the new blog name!

  20. I loved reading your answers, especially the one about if you had all the money in the world. I think I would do the same thing. Spend more time with my kids. It’s something I always wish I could do more of but in a few weeks I’ll be able to and I’m really looking forward to it.

  21. First Happy Birthday to your son – and Wow! Sounds like you are moving in your blog with a lot of great people involvement – congratulations on your adventure successes and great Q&A makes it very interesting

    1. My 3 year old would NEVER sleep in her bed as an infant, and believe me, I tried. She wouldn’t even fall asleep with my husband unless he was rocking her with the fan going. Hopefully this season ends SOON.

  22. So many thought provoking questions! So many things have changed since I became a mom. Since my son is older, the first thing that jumps out at me is technology. Like you, I’m also looking forward to building my business this year!

  23. I love your new blog name and design, although I was a little confused at first. I know April, and that’s her in the photo, but this isn’t her place….anyway, now I’m up to speed. Way to include three linkups in one post – I would have had writer’s block by the third one too. Although the few things you teased us with would make great future posts…

    1. LOL! Yes, I haven’t shut down 100lbCountdown because I have to move some older (more popular) posts over here. With two littles, I barely get my posts done! I have some time.

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