Advocare 24 Day Cleanse Challenge Results and Review

So I finished the Advocare 24 Day Challenge a few days ago. Feels good to have the last of those baby weight pounds off that had been lingering, and back to what I was before I had Vivien (or what I assume by how clothes fit/size, I haven’t owned a scale in years, numbers make the demons come out).  I didn’t take a before picture, but here is a results picture I took a couple of days after the cleanse was over.


I had stashed a box of clothes away under the bed for “the day I can fit back into them”.  Now I realize that even if I can fit into those “pre-Vivi” clothes they may not necessarily age or mom appropriate lol.  I just don’t really wear anything too short or tight these days.  This was all to the benefit of one of my dance students, who got a big bag of hand me downs.

First of all, I wanted to say that I didn’t really do the cleanse to “lose weight”.  Every woman has her insecurities, but for the most part I had come to a place where I was really pretty comfortable with where my body was at.  But I did want to cut out the wine and coffee and see what impact it had on my skin and body.

I also have a close friend who was wanting to do a cleanse and was looking to reset. We decided to do it together to hold each other accountable.

Our family has fairly good eating habits established already. We don’t eat too much processed or fast food, and only drink soda on a rare occasion. I would usually eat very clean during the day time, and then eat whatever I wanted for dinner, which ends up being take-out more often than I would like to admit. There was also that daily glass or two of red that I have every night that I was going to have to cut out.  So dinner was going to be the biggest challenge.

The great thing about the cleanse is that it had products and supplements to help with the cravings. I enjoyed the the first 11 days, which was the Detox portion, way more than the days following where you take lots of supplements. The program has this drink called “Spark” which was great. Think Gatorade with a kick. It helped with any caffeine withdrawals and cravings. There was also a pretty tasty fiber drink. It cleaned you out without anything too crazy happening. There was definitely some stuff happening if you know what I mean, but none in the “shitting your brains out” variety. Ok, that is all I will talk about poop.

As far as day 11-24, I’m just not a huge fan of taking lots and lots of supplements throughout the day which is part of the cleanse after the initial detox phase, and just cannot take them on an empty stomach or early in the morning.

Throughout the entire 24 days, you ate clean meals (no sugar, gluten, or dairy), and even had some shakes as a meal replacement if you wanted which were pretty tasty. I liked the fact that there were no only straight liquid cleanse days, like there are in other cleanses I have participated in the past.

The best thing about the cleanse was that it was very easy to follow. There was an App that you could use and actually “check off” everything as you drank the drinks, took the supplements, ate your meals, and all the water you have to make sure you drink.

All in all, I would definitely do the Detox portion of the cleanse again if I felt I needed a reset, but I don’t know about the whole 24 days. But I am glad I did it. I love a challenge, and love the benefits that came along with it. If you are interested in participating in a cleanse or purchasing the Advocare cleanse lmk, and I can point you in the right direction.


I had to post this one of HER.


Thinking about doing a post on how I initially lost most of the baby weight if you guys are interested?  Or if you have any specific health/wellness post requests lmk!!  Have a great day!!

Big news!!

I’ve been hesitant to share this news because I just couldn’t believe it was real. But now that I actually have a plane ticket and flight itinerary in my inbox, I feel it is safe to share that OMG I WON A FREE PEOPLE YOGA RETREAT TO NICARAGUA!!

On Good Friday, I came home after the egg hunt on Ft. Shafter and lunch with Chris, to an email in my inbox telling me that I was one of ten of Free People’s Sur la Sol winners for an all expenses paid 6 day yoga retreat in Nicaragua. My heart raced. I re-read the email over and over again. No way! I’ve never even won more than a dollar on a Texas gas station Lotto ticket!!

So I waited for the Mr. skeptic of all skeptics lawyer husband of mine to come home and tell me it wasn’t real. He tediously read through all of the fine print. “It’s totally legit, Laurie.”  Since then, there has been correspondence back and forth with the Free People folks and it actually is “totally legit”!

I had posted a pic that I took a while back (you may remember the dancing pics in front of the Mokes at Lanikai) on my FP Me profile page since I was wearing a FP dress. By posting that picture, I was entered into the contest. I had totally forgotten I even posted the picture until I got the email.

This is the pic I posted:


A few days after I received the initial email, the pic was posted as a favorite contest entry on the Free People Building 25 blog. Free People is my all time favorite brand of clothing. Again, I couldn’t believe it!!

Click here to view FP blog post:

About a week ago I received an email to set travel plans that contained a description of the retreat.

“On this special Free People retreat, Koya Webb will guide a daily morning yoga class in the jungle studio, followed by a delicious and healthy breakfast to make sure the day couldn’t begin any better. Your days will be filled with equal parts adventure (surfing, yoga, swimming) and relaxation (hammocks, napping, reading). A highlight of the week will be sharing in delicious vegetarian/vegan meals under a thatched roof overlooking the ocean.”

What? You mean I’m going to heaven? Ok.

I do not know what I am going to do with myself! I will not have to cook or clean or wipe a butt for six whole days!! My mother in law is able to get over here to help Chris take care of Vivi while I’m away so things are worry free and set on the home front. Chris has been so supportive and happy for me to go have a real retreat. It means a lot. If the roles were reversed I have to admit that I would be way more than the slightest bit jealous.

I’ll be heading to Nicaragua May 26!!

Huge shout out and thank you to Tien Austin  That morning at Lanikai will always be tucked away into a special place in my memories.   It holds onto a magical moment of this beautiful and amazing life I have been so blessed to experience.

Enjoy your weekend!!  Love and light!

Beach Day, Cleanse Update, and Chris is Home!

Chris had to travel to Australia for work this past week.  He got home yesterday right as I got home from teaching.  He is usually not home on random Friday afternoons, so we decided to hit the beach after Vivi woke up from her nap and take advantage of the family time since he is having to travel again in a couple of days and be gone for another whole week!

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I’m on day 11 of my Advocare 24 day Challenge and have found it really user friendly (it has an app) and easy to follow.  We eat clean the majority of the time, so the diet change wasn’t too crazy, but I had to add in clean dinners (dinner was always where I would indulge) and I cut out the wine at night.  I’ll do a full post about the cleanse once I am finished.  I have already noticed results, the best being that my skin has really cleared up.

Chris always brings Vivi and I sweet gifts home from his travels.  He always does a very thoughtful and great job, but this time he really got it right :)


Beautiful ethnic print dress and beaded jewelry to match for me, and koala tee (which she won’t take off) and wombat for Vivi.  Thanks babe.


Hope you enjoyed the post!!  Have a great weekend!!



I told Vivi that we were going to visit a magical fairy forest on the steep drive up to St. Louis Heights, also referred to as “Narnia” by the locals. Vivi and I stayed right at the head of the trail to take the photos, but there is some great hiking at Waahila Ridge State Recreation Area, right off of the neighborhood of St. Louis Heights.  I would love to make it back for the hike when we are not in tulle and lace.  In Hawaii it is not uncommon to drive through a neighborhood and right into an entrance of a State park or hiking trail.

Vivi had loads of fun chasing the local chickens and searching for fairies.

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My dress is a Free People gem purchased on the app Poshmark.  It is actually still on the FP website for $500 and I purchased it for $45 on Poshmark!!  It was my lucky day.  I feel that it is a classic silhouette I can keep for years.  I made Vivi’s “Tutu LaCour”, inspired by the very expensive Tutu Du Monde tutus that cover my “Vivi” Pinterest board.  It cost about $30 to make.

Huge thank you to Tien Austin!  Please check out more of her beautiful work at

Hope you enjoyed the post!  Have a great day!!



Big Ed finally joined Instagram and other highlights of the week :)

Hi friends! I hope everyone has had a great week! I’m trying my best to keep up with the blog, but I’m teaching ballet six days a week a the moment!  It has been a great balance of work and play this week…

Some highlights of the week:

-I have a student I recently started teaching private lessons to twice a week. Part of the arrangement was that her mother would watch Vivi in the lobby for me while I teach her daughter. This has worked out fabulously so far. I have a little studio baby now! Vivien never met a stranger, and she had the best time visiting with all the staff at Ballet Hawaii. My student’s Mom brought Vivi into the studio at the end of her daughters lesson and Vivi danced and danced to the grande allegro music, even requesting one more song after. I can’t lie. It made my heart sing.  I’m going to try to get some pics this week.


-On Wednesday, my friend Kelina and I started the Advocare 24 Day cleanse challenge. I haven’t done a cleanse in a very long time so I am excited. I think it will be easier to stay committed since Chris will be gone for two weeks this month (no Boston‘s Pizza requests), and my friend and I can hold each other accountable. Hardest part for me will be cutting out the vino at night, but I’m curious to see what changes my body may experience cutting out the alcohol. So far the cleanse has been great!  I have a ton of energy and the program has an app that makes it super easy to follow!!  Be ready for a full review and blog post once we are finished.



-Starting to get back in shape. I have an exciting event coming up at the end of May (more details once everything is set) and I want to be in the best shape possible. The Tone It Up Bikini Challenge starts next Monday so if you are interested in participating in it with me let me know!  I have been a huge fan of the Tone It Up girls, Karena and Katrina, since the beginning, and love their FREE videos and easy to follow weekly plans.  They are all about HEALTH, and are super positive and inspiring!!

Click here for details of the plan:  Tone It Up Bikini Program

TIU Bikini Program


-Lunch with Giselle.




-Little girls, tutus, and silver tap shoes!!  What more could I want??!!  Our neighbor had a dance recital and invited us to come watch her perform!  What a treat.

anais recital




-The Marine Base has a splash pad for the kiddos!!  Took Vivi on Thursday morning.  They have lounge chairs for the mommas and it is fenced in so the kids are contained!  Had a great time catching up with my good friend Nikki, and Vivi had a great time playing with her bud, Jack.


-Beach afternoon.



-A lot of people have been telling Big Ed that he needed an Instagram account so I finally convinced him to set one up!!  You can follow him at

big ed insta


Chris and I are looking forward to a date night tomorrow night!  We are headed into Honolulu for sushi and to see a Trombone Shorty concert!!  Hope you all have a great weekend!!!!

Thrifty Thursday


Hi friends!!  It’s Thrifty Thursday!!  Vivi’s outfit is from Savers, a thrift store in Honolulu.  The skirt is Children’s Place brand, $3.99, and the top is H&M, $2.99.  I had my 25% off Military discount on top of it, so the whole outfit cost a little over five bucks :)

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She got her new Minnie Mouse watering can as a birthday gift and loves watering the plants.  When I wasn’t paying attention, she snatched a green tomato off one of the plants and started chowing down.  I didn’t think it would taste too great because it wasn’t ripe yet, but I took a bite and it was actually pretty tasty!!  Our whole family has really been enjoying the garden that friends of ours planted for us as a thank you for hosting them.

Hope you all have an awesome day!!!

Mommy Monday

We are working on potty training this week. Ch-ch-ch-changes….

potty training vivi

She doesn’t like the potty, in case you couldn’t tell.

I haven’t been a parent for too long, do not claim to know it all, and am definitely still an amateur.  A friend of mine that is going to be a mom soon emailed me asking a few questions about being a new mommy, which was the catalyst for this post.

Once, while living in Germany, Chris and I were traveling somewhere on a tiny plane.  Ironically, I can’t remember where we were going, but I do remember this story.  Whenever we would fly, we would always sit together on a three seated row.  It would always be a wild card as to who would sit in the last seat.  On this particular flight, a large German man wearing a leather biker vest with no shirt underneath, mind you, sat down next to Chris.  That man’s armpit was pretty much right in Chris’ nostril.  And it stunk.  It stunk bad.  I feel like I start a lot of stories with “I can’t make this shit up”, but here it goes.  I can’t make this shit up.  The man proceeded in ordering a stinky cheese sandwich and a hot chocolate. Chris pointed all of the air vents  in the leather clad, stinky cheese sandwhich eatin’ German’s direction.  Then the man says, “ooh, it is cold ya?”, and points them back to Chris.  Then Chris just starts taking in these really deep breaths.  I look at him and he mouths to me, “I just have to embrace it.”

I feel that is a lot like parenting is.

Here are a few more things being a mother has taught me.


Up for the 6th feeding of the night.

Bouncing a kid on a pilates ball for an hour to get them to sleep.

Kid pukes, the dog gets “lady items“ out of the trash, you see a cockroach run across the floor, the timer goes off on the oven just as the delivery man comes to the door. This is not a rare occurrence.

The kid was misbehaving at the store, you get them in the house, load the arms up with groceries, to walk in the house and find a big ole turd on the carpet the dog left for you. Deep sigh.


How selfish I used to be
Chris and I were older when we had Vivi. We weren’t old by any means, but we had taken the requisite steps into adulthood while partying, traveling, being “crazy”, and having successful careers at the same time. So in certain ways, I feel like we “got it out” and were ready to settle down. The other side of that story, is that we were really used to having our freedom. We were used to having time to work out, leisurely read, travel, have a nice cappuccino at a coffee shop on a Saturday morning. But when that baby first came….BAM!!! Those things went out the window. And I’m going to admit it and not be ashamed to say that I kind of mourned my old life for a minute. It is a dramatic life shift folks. And feeling a certain way does NOT make you any less a mother or devoted to your baby.

And on another note, you can certainly still make the time for the things in your life that you loved. You actually MUST do that to stay sane and happy, which in turn makes you a better wife and mother. It will happen. Note that a few months is not a lot of time in the grand scheme of things. I didn’t leave her to go on a date with my husband until she was 6 months old. I did not start really trying to lose the baby weight until she was done nursing around eight months. And in between those times I really didn’t even leave the house all that much. Things fall back and you find a rhythm. Then you will probably want to have the next baby… That is where I’m at right now….


Not to judge parents before you have a kid of your own
I remember an incident that happened right before Chris and I got married. We were out Christmas shopping. Out of no where a crazy kid that resembled “Animal” from the Muppets started running toward me. I was trying to dodge, and then right as we were about to collide, there was a recoil and he was yanked back. He was on a leash!! A leash disguised as a plush monkey on a backpack, but a leash none the less. On the car ride home Chris and I were JUDGING.  Judging HARD. “Our kid will NEVER EVER be on a leash.” “We will teach them how to listen and hold our hand.”

In case you haven’t guessed already what I am about to say….We have a runner.  She is a curious toddler that has a limited amount of time she will sit in a stroller while we go to the farmers market or shop. Guess what we pull out occasionally to use if we need two hands?  It may be slightly embarrassing but you do what ya gotta do, man. Enough said.

But I will still judge someone if I see them putting Mountain Dew in a baby bottle….


How I never really knew what tired was
Don’t ever speak the thoughts that you may think in the wee hours of the morning after the fourth feeding. Especially if they are about your significant other who is sleeping soundly in the bed. Just let those thoughts float off into the ether.

Hallucinating because of sleeplessness is a real thing.


I never truly felt what it was like to love until I had her. I feel that I lead a passionate life, passionate about the art of dance, my career, my husband. I don’t want to down play my love for them. Or the love others may have for similiar things who do not have children.

But I think about how she grew inside my body and still really can’t fathom it. We made her. The kind of love that when you see them smile, it makes your heart feel a certain kind of way. Fulfilled? Raw?? Thankful????  I honestly can’t find the words.


Letting go of expectation to outcome
Before Vivi was born, I had a whole preconceived idea of what my world was going to be like. First of all, I thought that I would give birth in the water, listening to my tranquil “birth playlist” and she would just slip out while I softly moaned. If you read Vivi’s birth story, you know what happened there.

I would cloth diaper her, she would eat only organic baby food that I would puree myself. She would only play with organic toys that Chris would whittle by hand.

None of those things happened. I was way too exhausted to even think about spraying shit off of diapers, by the time I bought all of organic vegetables it ended up being very close to the amount of money it cost to just buy the jars of organic food, and well, Chris never learned to whittle.

The challenging part about all of this is to not feel guilty about things not going to plan. Do what works. Know that you can only do what you know is best at the time. And stay off of those “mommy blogs”!!!


Hope you enjoyed the post!  Have a great day!!

And so it is…


I feel that these photos hold significance to this particular time in my life.

I missed dance for a long time after I retired. I missed different parts of it. I missed the friends and report I had with my fellow company members. I missed being part of a creative process on a daily basis. I missed the ritual that is daily class. I missed the grit and the grace that are part of living out your dream. I missed the thrill of feeling the air blow through your whispies when you catch flight. The adrenalin that pushes a performance. The realness and the rawness of being IN THE MOMENT.

It took me five years to even enter a studio again. I can’t believe I am teaching ballet four days a week at the moment.

I am finally at a place in my life where instead of mourning a part of my life that is gone,  I find a fulfilling role is sharing the parts of dance that I loved. I find love in seeing something “click” when a student finally “gets it”, the hug from one of my tweens at the end of class, listening to the beautiful ronde jambe music Takashi always plays, watching one of my adult students embody the ballerina they always knew they were. I find love in sharing my passion. And I find love in giving.

At the same time, I’ve realized being a dancer was a significant part of who I was and can still be a part of who I am. Why not? It honestly shaped who I am as a person. The punctuality, the discipline, the drive. The criticalness, the attention to detail, the eagerness to please, the work ethic. The perfectionism. Both good and bad things, but parts of me, nonetheless.

And I still find the realness and the rawness of being in the moment, but it comes from different places other than performing. I find it in rediscovering something through my daughter’s eyes. Going back to that ancient place of what dance felt like in the very beginning, the freeing abandon and possibility that are part of being a child, that I have the joy of experiencing again with her.

These photos are about what once was, and what is now. And finding peace in both.

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Huge thank you to Tien Austin for what has truly become a magical collaboration.  Hope you all have a great weekend!!!  I teach all day today and Vivi’s birthday party is tomorrow!!  Happy Spring!!!

Vivien’s Birth Story


On the night of March 19, I started feeling what felt like period cramps.  Vivien’s due date was March 23, so I figure things may be getting set into motion.  Chris and I had a friend’s farewell dinner we had planned on going to, and decided to just see through with the plans, as the pain was only slight discomfort at this point.  The “cramps” got progressively worse through dinner, but I didn’t want to say anything because I didn’t want to take any attention off of our friend, who was deploying within the next couple of days.  I figured I was in the beginning stages of labor even though my water hadn’t broke yet.

When I went home, I went to the bathroom and there was something left in the toilet.  Chris googled “mucus plug”. FYI, don’t ever do that.

Now on my to do list was to call my grandmother, which my mother told me earlier in the day to do.  I told her what was going on, and she told me that once you lose “the button” as she called it, the baby was going to come soon.

I told Chris to go to bed, I would wait for my contractions to get closer together and I would wake him up to take me to the hospital when I felt ready.  I labored the whole night while watching Season 2 of the HBO show Girls.  The contractions were intense, but never got really close together and consistent.  I did have to stand up and bend over, holding the arms of the new recliner we had purchased as my nursing station for Vivi. I also sat on the pilates ball some.  My main concern (which now looking back was pretty silly) was that I made it until 8am so that Chris could get the dogs to the kennel so that we wouldn’t have to worry about them after we checked into the hospital.

Did I mention that at this point I still had not decided whether or not I wanted to have the baby at the American Military Hospital in Landstuhl, or the German hospital in our town of Idar-Oberstein?  We were prepped to do either.  I was really hoping for a natural birth, which I felt the Germans supported and catered to more by even offering water births as an option, but I was scared about the language barrier.  I had been going to my baby appointments at the American Hospital in Landstuhl, and they were perfectly fine, but I did have a different doctor every single visit, so I knew I didn’t necessarily have any sort of relationship with any specific doctor, but it would be familiar, and I knew everyone could speak English.

About 7am rolled around and contractions were super intense, I told Chris to get the dogs to the kennel and then we could go. He dropped the dogs off and came home.  I took a bath to relieve some of the pain and Chris came into the bathroom. I was balling my eyes out because I still didn’t know which hospital I wanted to go to.  BTW, nothing may be more humiliating then sitting in a tub with boobs, stacked on top of belly, on top of THIGHS, under fluorescent lights balling my eyes out in front of my husband.  I gained sixty pounds when I was pregnant with V, and it pretty much looked like Freddy Krueger slashed my ass with my giant stretch marks.

I don’t remember how I made up my mind, but I knew I needed to make a decision.  I had enough faith in what Chris called his “ook ook caveman German”.

“Ok, lets go to the German hospital.”

I checked in around 9am.

I kid you not, a nurse named Helga with hands like a lumberjack checked my dilation.

“You are a one, Miss LaCour.”

WTF!!!!  A one?  A mutha effin’ one??  I was in so much pain already.  I asked the doctor if I should just go back home.  She said that it seemed that I was in a lot of pain, so that I should stick around, and they would draw me a bath to try to relax in.

It took a while to get our room organized.  In Germany, you can get a room with an extra bed, so that your spouse can stay in the room with you.  You also stay in the hospital a minimum of three days after you have the baby.  We went to the room, which only had one bed. Chris had to go back and get our paperwork organized to get the other room with two beds. In the mean time, I just hung out.  When I had contractions it felt best for me to stand up and bend my body forward.

Did I mention there was no “weigh-in”, or having to put a hospital ID bracelet or gown on or anything like that??  I was walking around in my PJs and Uggs, and Chris was still walking around in his regular old clothes holding my Gatorade.  They urged me to eat, while I waited for Chris but I couldn’t.  I am mentioning these facts because I have had women stationed in Germany contact me asking about my experience, and I am assuming that these are some of the differences between the two hospitals. I’m not saying either is necessarily better than the other, just detailing my experience for others.

Eventually we got our other room. Then they put me in the bath.

Ladies, this is why I have no shame.  Second time in the day for the husband assisted bath under fluorescent lights. I mean, I literally felt like a walrus!!  Contractions were getting more and more intense.  There was some blood, and a nurse checked me and wanted me to get out of the bath because Vivi’s head was positioned too far up on the cervix or something like that.

After I got out of the bath, I told Chris, “I don’t care what I told you, I think I want an epidural.  This is just too intense.”

The nurse checked my dilation. Chris told her my feelings about the epidural.

The doctor responded. “Oooh, no, Miss LaCour. Wivien is coming…”

I missed the boat for the epidural.  The universe has a way of handing us exactly what we want, lol.  Also in German they pronounce their “V’s” like “W” sounds.

They pulled in one random nurse that knew a little bit of English.  “Wivien is goot,” she said soothingly over and over as she held my hand.

Here is where everything gets pretty hazy.  I didn’t know how much time passed, or what other people were doing in the room.  I went to this primal place where all I was in tune with was birthing my baby.

Towards the end of the labor, the doc told me that they had to give me some Pitocin to help get Vivi down.  I remember this being the most painful part of the labor, however, it is so true what they say, you don’t remember the pain AT ALL.  However, I do remember telling Chris I needed to bite something, and he being the loving husband that he is, told me just to bite him!!!  I didn’t, or it most definitely been a Mike Tyson vs Evander Holyfield situation, and I would have left the hospital with a baby and a husband with one ear.

My water broke three pushes before she came out!!!

They asked if I wanted to feel the head as she was coming out, and I will be honest and admit I didn’t want to because that freaked me out.

Before I knew it, my baby girl was on my chest.  Time stood still for a moment.  She still had not even let out her first cry.  I watched her open her eyes for the first time. It may be the most peaceful, miraculous moment I have ever witnessed or been a part of.   There are no words for the feeling that I felt in that moment.

The only way I can even try to explain it is that, to me, having a baby  is truly witnessing a miracle take place.  Whatever doubts you may have are gone, and you truly feel one step closer to God.

Vivi let out a cry a few moments after she opened her little eyes.

Later on Chris told me I only pushed for around ten minutes.

The nurse asked us if we wanted “Wivien’s” placenta, that sometimes people plant it with an “affel” (apple) tree.  What??  No thanks.

The nurses took Vivi and did the tests and weighed her and brought her back to me bundled up like a little Eskimo.  Right after that, the nurse snapped the pic at the top of the post which is the very first picture we have of her.

I have enjoyed reminiscing and writing this post.  I hope you enjoy it too.  If new mamas or mamas to be have any questions, feel free to private message me.  I kept this post pretty PG.  Love and light……