family · travels

Weekend in North Carolina

My daughter and I disappeared to Laurel Springs, NC a few weekends ago with my father and stepmom. My husband had to stay back due to work but I took it as the opportunity to be independent and take my first road trip with my little one.


Traveling with a toddler is not easy. B is so easy, but sometimes life happens and seven hours in the car is a long time for anyone! She threw up for the first time on the way there and it was so sad but she was such a trooper. I think it was a toss between reading books and watching Frozen that upset her belly. We survived though!

We arrived late the first night and I couldn’t wait to see our surroundings the next day! Having grown up in rural Maine, I love the mountains and the outdoors. I’d move to the mountains in a heartbeat.

The first day we went the to Brushy Mountain Apple Festival. I bought so many crafts! I really enjoy buying homemade items for the holidays. It adds warmth and hominess. B thoroughly enjoyed the music and the apple cider. I bought so many apples. I’m still baking with them, haha!

The next day we drove around visiting all the sweet little towns in the area. We drove to Banner Elk, Boone, and West Jefferson. Man it’s beautiful up there! It was rainy and overcast but that didn’t stop our explorations. I honestly think it just adds to the experience. Charleston hardly ever feels like fall or winter, having the rain over the weekend while in the mountains made me feel right at home (Maine home that is lol!)


B and I left Monday morning. We enjoyed delicious treats, amazing accommodations, wonderful family time making memories, some classic cars and she got to add another experience to her little world. She slept like a champ all three nights and the ride home was just the two of us, no traffic and a lot of “Love is an Open Door” and “Charlie Brown Christmas”. My kind of road trip.



One of the things I loved most about the area was the Christmas tree farms everywhere! Wouldn’t it be awesome to own a Christmas tree farm?! I’m obsessed. Where do you get your Christmas tree?

Enjoy Instagram stories? Follow me on Instagram! I’ll try to keep it interesting ; ) @cortneymarie307

family · fitness · inspiration

Coming out of the dark….

No makeup, no filter, sweat and maybe even a few tears 😜😜 Real life, y’all.

I took the weekend to gather myself in the mountains, plan for the future and figure out where I’m at and what I want. I also didn’t work out 🤦🏻‍♀️. I’m paying for that now. At the time I told myself ‘ah it’s one weekend’. Well….isn’t that how bad habits begin 🙄

How many times have you told yourself that? How many times have you justified food and/or drinks and said it won’t effect you that much? 🙋🏻🙋🏻 I can assure you I have said it and done it and paid for it. Life is already hard enough, why deprive myself? <—that’s me talking! Toddler Mom, wife, full time working woman. Except all I’m doing is making this harder for myself by justifying these cheats.

I’ve tried everything. I’ve competed, I’ve trained hardcore. And I’ve also let myself slip in every way possible. I KNOW what works. It’s just finding the motivation to make it happen. I want to feel better every day, I want to love who I see in the mirror. Don’t we all? 🤳

Are you in the same boat I am? Message me. Let’s chat and set goals and talk about how we can do this together. I have found that having someone along the same ride makes it easier. Someone who understands the ups and downs. Need that friend, coach, encourager? I’m here for you! 👋

Time to reach some more goals! 🏆

Find me on Instagram: cortneymarie307

(quote from Grey’s Anatomy—the show of all amazing quotes 😂)

family · Lessons Learned

In case of an emergency….


So you’ve probably seen this image already at least once today alone. Hello, Hurricane Irma. I live on the South Carolina coast and while I completely respect you, I really don’t want you coming around. You’ve made quite a mess. As a toddler mom, clearly you are throwing a MAJOR tantrum and you need a long time out.

All kidding aside, this has been a scary week. My heart goes out to the Leeward Islands, Barbuda, Puerto Rico, Sint Maarten. Fort Lauderdale is my happy place. I have very close friends in both Boynton Beach and Wellington. And I live in Charleston. Irma is coming a little too close for comfort.

To downplay something of this size and nature for selfish reasons….foolish. If you’re in the cone of uncertainty, you need to be in the know. Especially when there are babies and animals to be accounted for, families who might lose their homes, cars to gas up in case of an evacuation, arrangements to be made. I have a horse. It’s not an easy move to make. I don’t own a trailer. That might seen dumb in the moment but generally speaking, my horse is 22 and we no longer show. I never plan on going anywhere, except in an emergency situation. Securing a place for an animal that doesn’t fit in your house and securing transportation for an animal who doesn’t fit in your car is no easy task. There are many people stuck directly in the hurricane’s path for this very reason. My heart goes out to them because I know I was fretting big time until last night when all my plans were finally concrete. (and even then, are they really?? Mother Nature knows no rules.)

This is not the time to be selfish, or to look down upon someone for being worried about what the next move is. While it may not matter to you, it matters to someone else. Have compassion.

My life has changed since having a baby. There was a time when working during a hurricane wouldn’t matter to me, that having a hurricane party seemed like literally the best idea ever. ( Mary Chapin Carpenter mentions it in her song “Down at the Twist and Shout” and as a kid I thought it sounded like a blast tbh.) Between my daughter and my horse (not to mention all the other family members and moving parts), hurricane parties sound like the LAST thing I’m interested in. Safety first. That’s my motto now. Better to be over prepared than to make a mistake that could risk someone’s life. As they continue saying on our local channels, you can rebuild your home, you can’t rebuild your life. (And if we learned anything from Hurricane Harvey….Texas, we’re thinking of you here in SC!)

Now a snow storm…I’ve got that all day. I’m a Maine-er at heart, always will be. But this hurricane nonsense….it gets scarier and scarier. Especially since now we have Jose chasing his sister Irma across the ocean and Katia trying to attack Mexico. Y’all, this isn’t cool. Which one of you needs wine and which one needs chocolate? All three? No worries, I have enough.


(above quote credit to Team Froglogic instagram)

We have no control. We can only react to what happens, make the best decisions and choices we can to protect who we love and support one another. This may not work into our plans but what really does? The universe plans what she will and we just have to go along with it. But how we go along with it is what makes us who we are. You can fight it, throw a fit, ignore it, pretend it’s not happening, live in denial, cry about it, etc etc but guess what? That does you no good. All you’re doing is spreading your negativity and throwing yourself a pity party. And I don’t know about you, but whenever I have thrown myself a pity party, no one  has come. Huh.

I’m writing this as a reminder to myself and others: BE COMPASSIONATE. You never know what someone is going through or dealing with. And when your state declares a state of emergency, pay attention. Listen closely. Gather the information and react accordingly. It’s happening. It’s real. Let’s deal with it. And let’s support each other amidst the chaos.

If you’re currently being affected or you’re about to be, be brave, but safe and stay alert. My thoughts are with you. We will come out the other side of this.





Work/Life Balance and the Struggle

I had no idea how hard finding the balance between work life and home life would once I had a baby. Before I had her, I was married and my husband understood my 60 hour work weeks. I was always a worker, I loved being at work. Managing a gym was everything. Hard but so rewarding. I love the business. When I wasn’t working, I was working out there. They went hand in hand. And my marriage thrived because when we were together, we were together.

Once I became pregnant, I still managed to hold on until I went on bed rest two week prior to delivery. I slowed down but I never stopped. I will say when maternity leave came, however, I was SO SO ready.

It was strange and yet wonderful not working. But I did crave going back. I had no idea how hard that would be, however. WAKE UP CALL. Ouch.

I’ve been struggling since. Sometimes I think I’ve got it together, sometimes I feel like a literal mess. It seems that when I begin to think I have it all together, that I’m balancing everything, that’s when Bailey goes three nights waking up in the middle of the night, work goes into overdrive, and my diet and workout regime fall apart. It’s a cycle. It happens all the time. And then the anxiety and panic set in. Mix that with exhaustion and that is a recipe for one of my infamous meltdowns (I say infamous because my husband can always predict them lol).


I’m working so hard to manage it. I’m trying to turn off the strong sense of needing to work 24/7 so I can spend time with my daughter. I’m fortunate enough to get to spend a lot of time home with her so I need to take advantage of that and not be at the beck and call of work.

Do you have ways you manage it? Hours of the day set aside for certain things? That’s what I’m trying to do. Answering emails in the morning, being as efficient as possible when I am at work but also respecting time enough to get home to relieve my sitter/husband. And BOUNDARIES. Man, if I could just learn boundaries, I feel like I’d be so much better off. Nobody is perfect though, right? LOL

Balance III

Tell me how you manage your work/life balance. I could use some insight!

family · kids

Toddlers are tornados 🌪

This basically sums up what life is like with a toddler. It’s hilariously cute and exhaustingly trying. Some days I have no idea how I will find the energy to keep up with her when she wakes up from her nap. And on the days she doesn’t nap….Lord have mercy. The kid is a tornado.

How do you keep your toddler entertained? We go to the pool, we go to the beach, to the aquarium, for walks. We play outside, we go to the barn now that she’s more mobile. I will say, I am definitely more active with this child around! 

I’ve definitely learned you have to laugh. No matter what. It’s easy to get frustrated, to be so tired your brain can’t function. But what do you want your child to see? That’s what I think of every time she’s having a moment and I’m not prepared. I don’t want to yell, I don’t want her to experience negative energy if she doesn’t have to. There is a time for that, absolutely. But 90% of the time, in our house, we talk to her like a person and we work to teach her wrong from right. It takes time and patience, but it’s so important to me that she grow up strong and well adjusted. To each his/her own but for us, this works. 

Some things don’t always go as planned. What I thought was a cute idea then often makes me question my sanity. But then I suppose maybe that’s the whole thing? Trying new things, laughing when it doesn’t go right, and trying something else. I mean, you have to laugh right? 

I wouldn’t change this for anything. Every day is a new and exciting challenge. Some days are easy, some days I miss dinner plans because I’m having a ‘mommy meltdown’. I’ll talk about judgement and giving moms a hard time in a future post, but for now, let’s just say that momming is hard work. Your cultivating a little being, teaching it how to be, how to grow. It’s a special little experience and not one is the same as another. It’s pretty incredible. And despite the pile of sand in my yard that I’m still picking up, and the dog food that was dumped on the floor, we all survived and no one was hurt, no real damage done. So laugh. Enjoy it. We only get to do this once. What do you want to remember? I want to remember laughter. And I want her to remember it too. 



Do you ever stare at your child while they sleep and wonder how you got so lucky? How you made such an incredible, beautiful, curious little being?

Pregnancy itself it a miracle. Feeling the baby inside, knowing you’re growing another human within you, creating life within you….it’s absolutely mind-blowing. I’m in awe.

Not everyone loves their pregnancy. I loved mine. I wanted everyone to touch my belly, to feel her move. I took soooo many bump pictures and I still look back fondly on every one. Even when I was huge. And I was huge. I gained 50lbs with my pregnancy. Some of it was fluid–I had preeclampsia and was on bed rest two week prior to delivery–but it is what it is. Would I do it all again? Absolutely. The feeling of having a child inside you is something to cherish. So many women do not get to experience this. If you get to be pregnant, no matter what, embrace it.

Staring at Bailey tonight I wonder how in the world I (we) created such a child. Watching your child grow is some kind of reward, some kind of stunning addition to your life you don’t even know you’re missing until it’s there. It’s terrifying beautiful, the journey. I wouldn’t change it for anything. And as I lay her down to sleep every night, blowing her kisses as I leave the room, I pray she gets to have an amazing life. That she does amazing things that she dreams of, works for, is passionate about. That she takes chances, and risks and reaps the rewards. That she’s healthy, happy, and hopeful.

Being a mom is the hardest, most rewarding thing I have ever done.

What’s your favorite moment with your child? That one quiet moment that hits you right in the feels.