Tuesday, May 19, 2009

Break time!

I've decided that I'm going to take an indefinite break from blogging. I love blogs, but I haven't been doing mine justice and it's making me feel guilty. I am focusing all of my energy on other things right now, but I will probably give blogging another try when I get some of these other things accomplished.

However, I probably will still stop by and update my weight loss ticker, because it does make me happy to see the numbers change on that :)


Tuesday, May 5, 2009

Takin' It Off Tuesday

Wow! I actually made it on a Tuesday!

Ok - I am getting excited because I am 1 pound away from my 20 pound mark!!! Yay! But...that one pound isn't leaving easily, that's for sure. I was hoping to be at 20 pounds last week so that I would have a few extra days for my goal of 30 pounds by June 6, but it didn't happen. I have a feeling it's not going to happen by tomorrow either. That's ok. Slow and steady, slow and steady...

A couple weeks ago was Spring Break and that was a little bump in the road for me because it was harder to find the time to exercise and I ate too much :) It was worth it though. It was a fun week.

Since then, I have picked up the pace with walking. I think I walked around 30 miles last week. I wrote it down because I can't remember anything these days, but it's out in the car and I just don't want to go out and get it :) This week I have walked 15 miles so far and my goal is 30. I'm trying to make up a little bit for Spring Break week when I only walked about 16 miles. Also, if I want to see 30 pounds by 6/6, so that I can have a chance at seeing 40 pounds by 7/6, I need to pick up the pace.

One thing that I learned during the break week, is that I really need to get up earlier and get some exercise in, in the morning. Otherwise, I'm in big trouble when school lets out for the summer. I am going to try and work my way up to that. On Friday, I am going to try and get up and walk before my husband leaves for work. This will be an adjustment!

Hopefully, by next week, that pound that's keeping me away from 20 pounds, will be gone. Hopefully plus some :)

Tuesday, April 14, 2009

Takin' It Off Tuesday

I am pleased with how this week went in terms of loss, even though it wasn't the best week in terms of being able to exercise and food...ugh...let's just say I didn't do that great this weekend.

I walked 6 miles on two different days, 3.2 on one day and did a Walk Away the Pounds (3 miles) on two different days. This was a total of 21.2 miles. It's below what I wanted to do, especially since I don't consider the WATP dvds to be a true 3 miles. I need to remember to wear my pedometer sometime to see what that reads. However, it does seem to be a pretty good workout and it's good in a pinch which is what I was in this past week since I had a sick child at home for most of the week.

I am trying not to get too wacky about exercising, but I feel like I have found a good routine. Walking, or whatever, for roughly 25 miles per week seems to be working well right now. I have moved past the point where I was stuck and I have a little more freedom with what I can eat. I do have to be a little careful to not exercise too much because then I feel like I can just eat whatever I want to and that is so clearly not the case!

I am excited because I am 4 pounds away from being at my halfway point for my 40 pound goal. If I can lose that 4 pounds by 5/6, then I feel like I will be on track to lose another 20 by the time my birthday is here. This week didn't get off to the best start. Easter was a busy day so I wasn't able to walk as much as I would've liked to and then I developed some heel pain so I took it easy yesterday. Today I used the elliptical machine for 6 miles (between 6.0 & 7.0 mph the whole time) and I was very pleased with that! Tomorrow I am hoping to get a good walk in and hopefully my heel won't bother me too much.

So...my goal for the week is 25 miles. So far:

Sunday - 1.6 miles walked
Monday - 1.6 miles walked
Tuesday - 6 miles on the elliptical

I think it will be close.

Monday, April 13, 2009

Menu Plan Monday

This is an easy week :)

Monday - Leftover Weeknight Lasagna (in freezer)

Tuesday - Chicken patties

- Leftover meatloaf (in freezer)

Thursday - Breakfast - Chocolate chip pancakes, eggs, bacon **

Friday - Cheeseburgers

Saturday - Pizza Night

Sunday - Tacos

**My two oldest girls loved helping me make dinner last week so we are doing it again (my little two were spending the night with my parents). And...it is very true that kids are more likely to eat something when they have helped to make it! This week, I had a hard time finding a recipe that was kid-friendly to make and was something that I thought they would like. I had our Thursday breakfast dinner planned for a different night, but then I decided that it was perfect for a kid dinner because there is a lot of measuring and mixing with it. I think they will love it! I'll just have to pay close attention to how many chocolate chips they are eating while we're making the pancakes :)

For some great meal ideas, visit Laura at I'm an Organizing Junkie.

Happy Eating :)

Thursday, April 9, 2009

Takin' It Off Tuesday

(Once again, I'm just going to ignore the fact that it's Thursday already...sigh...)

I did pretty well with walking/exercise this week. My goal was 25 miles.
Sunday - walked 6 miles
Monday - 5 miles on the elliptical
Tuesday - walked 2 miles
Wednesday - 5 miles on the elliptical
Thursday - walked 7 miles (at one time - wow, that was tough towards the end!)
Friday - day off
Saturday - walked 5 miles

My goal for this week is 28 miles. I don't think that I'm going to make it :( At this point, I have 15 miles and 3 of those were from a Walk Away the Pounds dvd, so I don't think that really counts as 3. It's been a little bit of a tough week exercise-wise, because I have a sick child home with me. Hopefully I can pick up some more miles the rest of the week.

Since the weather has gotten nice, I have pretty much ditched the elliptical and have just been walking. Until this week. The weather was cold on Monday so I decided that I really didn't want to be out in it but I wanted to get 5 miles in. I honestly didn't think that I would be able to do 5 miles on the elliptical because I do that at a much faster pace than I walk. I walk a mile in a smidge under 14 1/2 minutes. I can do a mile on the elliptical in about 9 1/2 minutes. I was very proud of myself that I was able to do the 5 miles without passing out or worse. It felt good and I was actually thinking that maybe I should do that once a week. I wasn't really planning on doing it again so soon on Wednesday, but it was raining pretty hard out :( I think it was a little easier to do on Wednesday. It's fun to think back to when I started the elliptical and how I wouldn't have lasted 2 minutes at that pace and I now I can do about 47 minutes straight. Plus, there is a huge difference in what the machine says that my heart rate is now, compared to when I first started. It's nice to see/feel progress!

I had a huge feel good moment this week when I saw someone that I haven't seen in over 2 months and she commented on how I have lost weight. I could have kissed her :)

I feel like I have moved past the place where I stalled out and am now on to my next point where I'll get stuck :)

Monday, April 6, 2009

Menu Plan Monday

I'm so glad to actually be posting this this week. Usually Mondays come and go so fast, but this week I have my menu set, shopping done and am posting this on time :)

Monday - Weeknight Lasagna (from the recent Kraft magazine - I love getting that!!)

Tuesday - Hot dogs

Wednesday - Grilled cheese and soup

Thursday - Oven Fried Chicken Toes and Cheese Fries **

Friday - Spaghetti

Saturday - Pizza night

Sunday - Easter Brunch out and then probably sandwiches or something later

** My two oldest daughters have been showing a big interest in helping me make dinner. Usually, because that is my worst time of the day, I tend to put them off. I say things like "not tonight" or "there's nothing to help with," etc. I know this is not a good idea, but for me, it's hard enough for just me to make dinner, let alone add trying to teach anyone anything. However, I know that I'm not doing them, or myself, any favors by not letting them help out. So...I am going to try, once a week, to make a meal that is designed to have them actively participate. For now, I will probably focus on just letting my oldest two help out, but we'll see how that goes :) Our Thursday meal is from a Rachael Ray cookbook designed for kids (I can't remember the title right now).

Last week we made make-your-own-pizzas as part of my effort to let them participate more in making dinner. They were a huge hit. They don't know about my plan right now, but I'm sure once they find out, they will be very excited. I would like, at some point, to involve them more in the meal planning and the shopping, but, I shouldn't get too ahead of myself...:)

For a bunch of great meal ideas, visit Laura at I'm an Organizing Junkie. Happy Eating everyone :)

Thursday, April 2, 2009

Random Thoughts Thursday

I am often bombarded with random thoughts and there have been a couple earlier this week that I wanted to mention in this post, but...I cannot remember what they are! At. all. The mind just isn't what it used to be... :)

Wordless Wednesday


Takin' It Off Tuesday

(I am running behind this week, so even though it's Thursday, I'm just going to pretend that it's Tuesday).

This week was a much better week scale-wise. I didn't see huge changes in numbers, but it did move and it was in the right direction. So...no complaints from me. Also, I can continue to see that clothes are fitting differently. YAY!! I drank a lot more water and really limited how much soda I drank. I could have done much better in the eating department, but I did have one pretty major success with that. We went out to eat one day and I had a delicious sandwich. I could have very easily eaten the whole thing, but decided to just eat half and bring the rest home and eat it the next day for lunch. That is a pretty unusual thing for me to do. Now, if I could just do better with eating in general, that would be great! I look at it like juggling. The balls that I need to keep in the air are exercise, eating well and drinking a lot of water. The problem is that I really don't know how to juggle and can only seem to keep two "balls" in the air at any one time.

I walked 31 miles this past week and my goal for this week is 25. As of today (Tuesday :)) I have walked 8 miles and "ran" on the elliptical machine for 5 so I am saying that I am up to 13 miles right now.

I have a goal to lose 40 pounds total (I have lost 13 so far) by the time my 40th birthday rolls around in July. That would be such a great gift to myself :)

Thursday, March 26, 2009

Random Thoughts Thursday

See...I love the idea of theme days...

My children are still young (4,4,6 and 9) but as they get older, I am finding myself with a little more "free" time. Most of the time, it's when everyone is in school, but sometimes it's unexpected like when they go over to my parents house at the last minute. When I'm in the thick of things, I often think of what I'd do if I had a child(ren)-free moment, but when it actually happens, I don't know what to do with myself. I think it's because there is really so much that I could be doing, that I don't even know where to begin.

Lately, I've been spending much of my free time exercising. But today, was a day off from exercising and I found myself with a chunk of time while everyone was at school. I had so many plans: listing some things on Craigslist, cleaning, doing some laundry, organizing a couple of things...

Do you know what I did? I ate lunch, watched my DVR'd The Biggest Loser and made a mad dash around the house, picking up a few things, before I went to pick up my little ones from school. I think sometimes that those preschool hours are the quickest hours of my life!! Hopefully next time I'll be a little more productive!

Wordless Wednesday - A Little Makeover


Tuesday, March 24, 2009

Takin' It Off Tuesday

The scale has not been my friend this week and I'm a little frustrated about it. It has been like two steps forward and one and a half steps back. I keep trying to tell myself that I am still moving in the right direction but it's just not at the rate that I'd like.

I am trying not to rely on the scale so much, but I am very obsessed with what it's going to tell me. Honestly, it's what gets me up and going some mornings. I thought a little bit about putting the scale away for a while and then take it out again after a couple weeks. My fear is that I would get a lousy number and I would be totally discouraged.

I have one good theory about why I have almost stalled out. I think that I haven't been drinking enough water. I have discovered Diet Dr. Pepper and have probably been drinking way to much of that. I am going to try and drink more water and see how that goes.

I have been doing pretty well with eating and I walked a little over 25 miles (for exercise) this past Sunday through Saturday. I'm happy with that. My goal for this week is 30. I think I can do it. As of Tuesday, I have walked 15 miles, so I'll do 5 on Friday and 5 on Saturday (hopefully). So with that and the water, I'll see how the scale does. Clothes are fitting differently, so I think I'm making some progress:)

Tuesday, March 17, 2009

Takin' It Off Tuesday

I think that I do better when I have a theme for the day, so this is what I thought of for today.

I am on a journey right now. I am trying to lose weight and it is going to be a long, slow process. But that's ok. I am up for the challenge and I am in it for the long haul. My 40th birthday is coming up soon and I really wanted to be at a certain weight by the time it got here. I don't think that I will be at that number, but I think (Hope!!!) that I will be very pleased with my progress.

I have to admit that although I feel like I have been working very hard, the number on the scale isn't moving as fast as I would like (and I want to mention that at this point, I am not going to share any numbers. They are very personal to me. Maybe if and when I lose what I want to, I will change my mind). I am trying not to focus to much on that number so that I don't get too discouraged. I have been trying to give myself pep talks and as a result, I have come up with this analogy for my weight loss journey:

It is like I am planning a bicycle trip from New York to California and back to New York again. I know that it is going to take me a long time to get there and back. However, it's not just about arriving back in NY, it's about the journey. I know that I am going to have fun on this trip and see "friends" that I haven't seen in a long time. I know that I really need to get back home to NY so I am hoping that I don't get too comfortable in some other state and decide to stay there for too long. The frustrating part is that it seems like sometimes, my bike odometer gets stuck and it seems like I'm making no progress at all in my trip. I have to keep telling myself that as long as I ride my bike every day in the general direction that I want to go in, it doesn't always matter what my bike odometer is saying. Hopefully it will catch up eventually.

It's about embracing the process :)

Thursday, February 19, 2009

Obsessions can be healthy. Right??

I very freely admit that I love to know about people. I love to read about them, listen about what they do and look at pictures. In general, I love to see how other people live. I don't think it's a bad thing. Even Oprah admit that she likes to see how other people live.

Of course, I have been called a stalker by some people close to me, but it's been said in love. I assuming that it was said in love. Maybe I've been too free in admitting my love for going for walks at dusk when people haven't closed their blinds for the night (a great way to get decorating ideas) or my habit of doing drive-bys when I am in an area where an acquaintance lives (great way to get landscaping ideas).

I have to stop here and tell the story about the last time that I did a drive by. This experience happened several years ago and really left an impact (no pun intended!). My family and I were in a neighboring town, attending a festival. As we were leaving, I convinced my husband to drive by my co-workers street because he had recently moved and I was curious about his new house. As we were driving down his street, a cat ran out in front of our van and we heard a "thud." Uh. oh. We saw the cat run off, but we had no idea if it was hurt at all. Luckily, there was a woman walking with her baby a little bit down the street so I got out, explained what had happened and asked if she knew where the cat lived so that we could possibly talk with the owner. As I was talking to her, I realized that I knew of her through conversations with my co-worker. So I asked. And it was her. She was his neighbor and good friend. At that point, I knew that my co-worker would know that I was on his street and that he would also know that I was doing a drive-by. The neighbor said that she knew of the cat and that she would talk to the owner and let him know what happened. It turned out that the cat was ok and that according to my co-worker, I was officially a stalker. We had a lot of good laughs over that.

So anyway...I am curious. Blogs have been a great thing for me to get glimpses into peoples' lives and to get ideas. Sometimes I will see or read about something that seems like a great idea and try and incorporate it into my life. I am all about sharing ideas! I have a pretty good size list of blogs that I like to check out and honestly, I could spend all my time reading about other people.

But now...Facebook is my thing. I know that I have mentioned Facebook before, but I am seriously hooked on it. When I am home, I usually have it on most of the day and when I walk by my computer, I hit refresh and am instantly updated on what's going on with my friends. The great part is that these are people that I have a history with. These are real-life people that I know. I love my blogs but I love the personal connection that I have with my Facebook friends.

My curiosity needs are so being met right now. I get updates, I get to see pictures, I get to have conversations...what a great invention. So I may be a little obsessed, but it's done in the safety of my home and no little four-legged creatures are at risk.

Monday, January 26, 2009

Menu Plan Monday...and a vent...

It's been a little while since I've participated in this weekly event. I just haven't been organized enough to pull it off, I guess. Also, I am in the process of re-vamping my menu planning process, so that's been my focus.

This week, it's nothing exciting. At all. But, more about that in my vent :)

Monday: Grilled cheese sandwiches and chicken noodle soup

Tuesday: Chicken patties

Wednesday: Hot dogs

Thursday: Creamy Crock Pot Chicken with noodles

Friday: Sloppy Joes

Saturday: Pizza night

Sunday: Lasagna Cups

So...here's my vent. I am hoping that by blowing off some steam here, I will be able to make dinner tonight without being bitter about it.

I spend what I think is a fair amount of time planning, shopping for and cooking dinner. I am starting to get very angry about the whole process. I start in the kitchen around 5pm cleaning up and clearing some work space. Our kitchen counter and tablee are hot spots and tons of stuff seem to end up on them. One of my 4 year olds is very into "craft projects" right now and she uses our table as her work space. So I get those cleaned off but will spend the next hour defending that space from more "projects", toys, mail, etc. Usually about this time, someone starts crying and two others start fighting. It's unfortunate that dinner comes at such a tough time of the day.

Once dinner is ready, it's like pulling teeth to get anyone to even come in and eat. With a family of 6, it's almost impossible to fine something that everyone loves, for every meal. But I do try and respect some of the pickiness (no chunky tomatoes, no rice, etc) and I try to have at least one thing that I know each person will like and eat. However...lately I've been met with comments like, "Can I have a peanut butter sandwich?" or "Wow! If I hold my nose while I eat this, I can't taste it."

So...I finally get the kids in and they are done eating usually before my husband is ready to eat because he has a knack for making himself unavailable right at crunch time. This seems too work for him, though, because he will just grab a book and eat in peace.

Then everyone is done, but they'll be back soon asking about dessert or for a snack, even though I remind them during dinner, that they have to eat dinner if they want something later. There appears to be a short-term memory problem here :(

Then it's over. Everyone has quickly left the kitchen and I am left to clean up and put away leftovers of stuff that no one ate in the first place. It's now about 7pm and I am usually pretty irritated. That's two hours of my life, every day.

I am making things that I know most people will eat this week and that are low stress for me. We can only eat these so much which is why I try and plan a menu that is a little more varied. However, that doesn't seem to be working either. I am very close to just pointing out the cereal and cold cuts. We'll see how this week goes.

Friday, January 9, 2009

Fridays Fave 5


It's been way too long since I have participated in this. I've missed it.

This week has gone by so fast, but for some reason, I'm having trouble remembering details from the beginning of the week. Ugh! Anyway...here are my 5:

1. My husband is back tonight from being out of town. I never like it when he's gone, but this time was especially tough, even though he was just gone for a couple days. I think that it's because we've spent more time together over the past few weeks and (I think) we've had a lot of fun.

2. Dark Chocolate Chex Mix - this is soooo yummy. I think that I've had my fill of it though, at least for right now. I won't mention exactly how much of it I've eaten, but I will say that I had it for lunch one day this week :)

3. My watch - last year, right before Christmas, my beautiful analog watch that I had for years, died. I decided that I wanted a watch with some other features so I went with digital Timex watch. I had asked my husband for this watch for that Christmas, but after a couple days, I could not stand being watchless any longer and bought it myself (he's a last minute shopper so he hadn't gotten yet, I checked). For a long time after I bought the watch, I gushed about how much I loved it. He was a little bummed that he wasn't the one to get it for me. This watch really isn't anything special as far as watches go, but it's so different from my old watch and really helps me out at this point in my life. My favorite features are the alarm clock (how handy!!) and the timer. When my kids are fighting over a toy, they now ask me to set my timer so that they can take turns. Again, very handy!

4. Wordscraper on Facebook - this is Facebook's version of Scrabble (have I mentioned that I love, love, love Facebook?). I gave up on playing Scrabble with my husband, many years ago, because really, he's just too good at it. But this...this is fun and I love playing it with him.

5. Oxi Clean Spray - I don't have much patience for dealing with stains on clothes, which is unfortunate because we see a lot of them here. This spray has been a huge help to me. And...the other day I ran out of my kitchen cleaner so I decided to try this. It did a wonderful job!

(Not So) RAOK Thursday

(ROAK = Random Act of Kindness)

First, let me start by saying that I do know that it's Friday. I am still trying to catch up from the craziness that was December.

Second, this cold weather is really messing with my hands and it has caused some of my finger tips to crack (Yuck, I know) and the one that's the worst is my right index finger. That finger happens to be pretty important to me when I type, I've found out. However, I am trying not to use it because typing is just making it worse. That is making for some interesting spelling of words. That, coupled with my poor attention for editing, may make this a post filled with typos, Just FYI.

On with the point of the post...

I feel like I am a very lucky person and I am extremely grateful for all of the wonderful things that I have in my life. I also love the idea of paying it forward and try and do nice things for people whenever I have the chance. Unfortunately though, the extent of my kindness is usually (with a couple exceptions) limited to pretty basic things like holding the door or picking something up for someone or small things like that. It's not because I don't want to do more; I just haven't seen opportunities.

This year, I decided that I want to focus on doing more so I came up with the idea of trying to do one RAOK per week. This way I am hoping to be able to do things that are a little more significant and will hopefully make someone smile. I decided to post about it here because I am really hoping to get some ideas about things that I can do. I love hearing about things that people have done to make someone smile or to make their life a little bit easier in some way.

Yesterday, I was lucky and an opportunity landed in my lap. One of my friends on Facebook, who is also our neighbor, mentioned that both she and her daughter were pretty sick. Since I am right down the street, I thought that it would be fun to drop off a little pick-me-up for them. After I dropped off my daughters at preschool, I stopped by the store to get some chicken soup and a few goodies, including a smiley face balloon. I stopped by their house and left it by their door. I knew her son would be coming home from school soon and that someone would notice the bag. I was then eager to see if she was going to post something on Facebook wondering who did this. That was going to be fun for me :)

Well...it didn't go exactly as planned because I guess that her daughter did see me walking up the driveway to drop it off, but it sounds like it may have put a smile on my friend's face and that was the goal.

I'll have to see what I can come up with for next week.

Wednesday, January 7, 2009

A Rough Morning

Ugh! We had a pretty hectic morning here today and it was made worse by yucky weathers.

And...to make things worse (and to make certain that I will feel pretty yucky later), I just ate TWO Pop-Tarts for breakfast. I can't stand Po-Tarts. Normally, that is. These are the new Vanilla Milkshake ones, and I am sad to admit that they are pretty good.


Here's to a better rest of the day :)

Tuesday, January 6, 2009

Back in the saddle...

As I am writing this, I am thinking about how I am sore from exercising yesterday. For the first time in weeks! Boy, oh boy, did I get comfortable over the past several weeks. I started slacking off a little bit before Thanksgiving and then if just snowballed (ha ha - a little seasonal humor - get it?).

Between the holidays and going on vacation, I have been living in something outside of reality for awhile. In a way it was nice because I didn't worry about things like meals and schedules as much. But...it also meant that I didn't do things like exercise and eat like I should or drink as much water as I should, and so on and so on...

My husband and I stayed up too late playing games on the Wii but it was ok because he doesn't need as much sleep as I do and I didn't have to worry about getting up early.

I really enjoyed the time off with the girls. I am really loving the ages that they are right now. It is so wonderful having the youngest be 4 years old. I feel like they are finally old enough that we can do things without it causing major stress and anxiety for me. Or without it taking me hours to prep and pack for an outing. The other day I took my three youngest (6,4 and 4) to a children's museum (on what was probably one of their busiest days) without blinking an eye. It wasn't that long ago that I wouldn't take the three of them there on a slow day. But, I took them and it was great. The place is huge with a lot of different places to go, but they are old enough now to (generally) not have to worry about them running off. They actually follow directions (some of the time)!! It's such a great feeling!

Now, here I am back to reality. I guess that I should just try and embrace it.