Tuesday, December 31, 2013

2013: A Look Back

2013 will be over in just a few hours and I have to say that I’m more than ready to ring in 2014!!   2013 brought with it a lot of personal accomplishments for me.  I lost 38 lbs and completed 3 races, including my very first Spartan Sprint!  The past 12 months have been a fun and busy year for our family filled with parties, vacations and outings, but I’m excited to start 2014 and begin a new chapter in our family’s life.

See ya 2013…..Bring on 2014!!

  • Started Weight Watchers
  • Bowling outing with Anthony & Me
  • Taylor’s Birthday party
  • Family fun day at Sport Time USA
  • Kindergarten Registration
  • All three of us got sick with the flu :(

  • Fun in the snow (Nor’easter blizzard)
  • Swapping valentines at school
  • (another) week with Wally (preschool project)
  • Girls weekend trip to Foxwoods & Mystic, CT

  • Tae-Kwon-Do trial lesson
  • Trip to Florida to visit my mom & stepdad
  • Easter egg coloring & hunt
  • My birthday brunch at Xavier’s on the Hudson
  • Bowling play date with Anthony’s BFF, Tyler

  • Anthony turns 5!
  • RJ’s Birthday Party
  • Anthony’s 1st day of T-Ball

  • Mother’s Day dinner at Restaurant X
  • More T-Ball games
  • Gavin’s Birthday Party
  • Crazy hair day at preschool
  • The pool opens!
  • Memorial Day Weekend BBQs

  • Anthony’s “graduates” from Preschool
  • Gilly’s graduation party
  • Matthew’s Birthday party
  • More T-Ball games
  • Swimming and outdoor fun
  • I completed my first Spartan Sprint!

  • Watching 4th of July fireworks from our window
  • Vacation with my extended family to Niagara Falls
  • Damian’s 1st Birthday party
  • Anthony gets a new pair of glasses
  • Crazy hat day at Preschool
  • More swimming
  • Birthday parties for Chase & Aiden
  • Kindergarten orientation day
  • Had family photos professionally taken at a local park
  • Put our 1st house up for sale (eeek!!)

  • Soaking in the final days of swimming
  • Kindergarten bus orientation
  • Fishing at the local lake with Daddy
  • Birthday parties for Gilly, Vinny & Quincy
  • Found a buyer for our house & intensified our search for a new house
  • Girls weekend trip to Hershey, PA to see Justin Timberlake/ Jay Z concert

  • Anthony’s 1st day of Kindergarten
  • I completed my first 5k Color Run!
  • Stephen & Petra’s Engagement party
  • Play date at Sport Time USA with Anthony’s BFF, Tyler
  • Attended the world’s largest picnic in NYC (a Guinness World Record) sponsored by Hellmanns
  • Hit my weight loss goal!!
  • Continue the search for a new house
  • Family apple picking trip at local farm
  • Kindergarten Halloween Parade & Party
  • Birthday party for Connor & Paige
  • I completed my first Ridiculous Obstacle Race!
  • Continue the search for a new house

  • Celebrating thanksgiving with our family
  • Steven & Colette’s Wedding
  • Trip to NYC to see Lion King (Anthon’s 1st Broadway show)
  • Found our forever home!

  • Ride on the Polar Express (Essex, CT)
  • Celebrate our last Christmas in our house
  • Continue to pack up the house
  • Close on the sale of our 1st home

From our family to yours.  Wishing you a very Happy New Year.  Cheers to 2014!!

Saturday, December 14, 2013

My Kindergartner – 3 Months Later

We successfully made it through the first week of Kindergarten.  And the 13 more that followed after.  There were no tears, not (much) of a fuss, and after a few funny stories later he is quite comfortable in his new surroundings and acting like he has been going to school for years. 

After completing a quarter of the year, he is excelling in his school work and it doesn’t appear that the common core curriculum has had a negative impact on him (at least not yet).  I’m still quite nervous about all the work that is and will be thrown at him between now and June, but he’s been a trooper thus far and is absorbing everything in stride.  We had our very first parent teacher conference last month and he got a glowing report.  He is (thankfully) minding his manners and listening very well, which I was both happy & slightly surprised about considering he has been completely the opposite at home recently.

Since school began in September we’ve noticed a negative behavioral change in Anthony.  He’s become much more defiant than his usual five-year-old self and no matter what we ask of him (even simple questions like “please get dressed”) are answered with “I don’t wanna” or simply “no” which ultimately leads to an argument.  In talking to some of the other Kindergarten moms who are experiencing the same situation with their kids, we’ve attributed this new attitude change to the constant listening that he is doing all day combined with the stressfulness of all the work that is being asked of him as part of the common core.  Between school and his after school program, he is following someone else’s rules from 9 am to 5 pm.  By the time he comes home he’s just had enough and is taking out his frustrations on us.

In the last 3 months we’ve seen a slight improvement in his grumpiness, but we’re hoping that it will just take a little more time for him to adjust and for our sweet boy to return.  I’m honestly on the fence on how to reprimand him for this behavior because part of me feels like it’s not his fault that he’s being overworked but at the same time I need to address it so that he knows his behavior it’s not acceptable.   Who knew Kindergarten was going to bring with it such challenges!

Kindergarten School Picture

Sunday, November 17, 2013

An Interview with a Five Year Old

We were having a little fun this weekend and I decided to interview my five year old to see what kind of answers came out of him.  The results were pretty funny.

What’s your name?   Anthony

How old are you?   Five

Who is your best friend?   Tyler

What is your favorite food?   Tacos

What is your favorite animal?   A Lion because it has big teeth and eats the Zebras

What is your favorite color?   Blue

What is your favorite tv show?  Lab Rats

What is your favorite movie?  Monsters, Inc.

Who is your favorite person?   My Mom & Dad and Layla (my dog)

What does Mommy do for work?   Works on the computer

What does Daddy do for work?   Works on the computer and they have a cooking area at his job

What do you want to be when you grow up?  A superhero (Superman to be exact)

What do you love to do for fun?  Play with my best friend Tyler

Who is your favorite Superhero?  The Avengers

Thursday, September 26, 2013

Weeks 37 Results

Pounds Lost this Week:  -1.8 lbs
Pounds Lost to Date:  -38.6 lbs


I finally made it! WOHOOOOO!!!!!  I’ve reached my goal weight (plus a teensy bit).  After almost 9 months of weight watchers I can say that I am the lightest I have been since graduating college 13 years ago!  While it’s true that I probably could have gotten here a month or two earlier if I had stuck to the plan a bit better, truth is that life sometimes happens (and it did).  But when it does you can’t let it completely derail you.  I kept working at it and continued to remind myself that if the pounds didn’t come off as fast as they did in the beginning then that was OK.  When I look back at a summary of my loss it’s quite obvious that I had a strong start with my first 4 months being great loss months and then I tapered off in the summer which was when I was searching to try and get

my momentum back.

January:  - 9 lbs
February:  - 8.2 lbs
March:  -4.8 lbs
April:  -6 lbs
May:  -2.4 lbs
June:  -0 lbs
July:  -3.8 lbs
August:  -2.6 lbs
September:  -1.8 lbs

Half of me wants to go for another 1.4 lbs to make it an even 40 but I don’t know if I should push my luck.  Ha, ha!  I’m pretty psyched to be down 4 pants sizes and 2 shirt sizes.  At this point, I’m just going to let nature take its course; continue to eat healthy, exercise & monitor my weight weekly.  I won’t be posting weekly updates anymore though since I reached my goal.   This whole experience has changed my eating habits (for the better) as a lifestyle change and I need to keep it that way if I want to maintain the body I’ve worked so hard to achieve.


Wednesday, September 18, 2013

Weeks 36 Results

Pounds Lost this Week:  -0.0 lbs
Pounds Lost to Date:  -36.8 lbs

Zero is okay with me this week.  It was a tough stress week and I’m putting it behind me.  It’s a new week and I’m going back to meal planning and drinking more water.  I’m also gearing up for the start of my volleyball season so I’m excited to get back on the court one night a week.

Here’s this week’s dinner menu. 

Sunday 9/15:  Grilled Chicken Thighs with Grilled Polenta & Grilled Corn on the Cob (10 pts+)

Monday 9/16:  Leftovers (no meal plan)

Tuesday 9/17:  no meal plan (volleyball night)

Wednesday 9/18Crock Pot Sesame Honey Chicken with ½ cup brown rice (8 pts+) 

Friday 9/20:  Crock Pot Chicken Taco Chili (5 pts+) 

Saturday 9/21:  Leftovers (no meal plan)

Thursday, September 12, 2013

Weeks 34 & 35 Results

Pounds Lost these Weeks:  -0.0 lbs
Pounds Lost to Date:  -36.8 lbs

This past month has been a bit of a whirlwind between the craziness at work, the start of Kindergarten and the stress of house hunting (more to come on our move in another post).  I haven’t had much time to post my updates but honestly there hasn’t been much to report.  Last week I was up by 0.4 lbs and this week I was back down by those same 0.4 lbs….so a wash for the 2 weeks.  Considering my high stress level and my poor eating habits over the past 2 weeks I’m shocked I am not actually up higher than this.  While I’m still 1.4 lbs away from my goal I think my brain has switched itself into maintenance mode, which is NOT a good thing.  I am still determined to hit my goal.  I need one week to just go hard core back on the plan and I’m sure I will get rid of that last pesky pound.

I also promise to get back on meal planning next week.  I honestly haven’t had much time to cook the past few weeks so we’ve been winging it with cooking dinners each night.  With fall approaching I have a few soups & stews pinned that I’d like to try out.

Sunday, September 8, 2013

A Letter to my Son on Kindergarten Eve

To my number one man,

Only five short years ago we brought you home from the hospital and tomorrow you will embark on a whole new journey. While maybe it shouldn’t be that big of a deal since you’ve been attending an all day program since you were 17 months old, tomorrow morning marks a different kind of a milestone.  You will start your academic career which (I hope) will last for the next 14+ years.  I am such a mixed ball of emotions tonight as I sit here and listen to you sleep.

Excited:  I’m excited for all of the new things you are going to see, hear and learn.

Sad:  Truth is, it makes me a little sad to see my baby boy growing up so fast.  Tomorrow may only be the first day of kindergarten but it snuck up on me so quickly that I can only imagine how fast your elementary school years will fly by.

Nervous:  I know what a caring & gentle soul you are and I am nervous that others won’t treat you right and that bullies will try to take advantage of you.  I know that you need to learn for yourself who to listen to and how to stick up for yourself but the protective mother in me wants to shield you from all of that.

Proud:  Our hearts are just bursting with pride when we think of just how successful you will be.  You are growing up to be a sensitive, strong, independent, talented little man, who spreads joy to everyone who spends time with you.

I know we can’t protect you from everything.  You will have good days, and bad days.  You will get tempted to make bad decisions.  Not everyone will want to be your friend and there will be times when your feelings will get hurt.  I will help to soothe your broken heart and do my best to arm you with the tools you need to make your own decisions.

Always do your very best and treat others with respect.  Remember your manners but don’t forget to come home and hug me tight every day after school (until you graduate from college).

I love you to the moon & back.


Thursday, August 29, 2013

Week 33 Results

Pounds Lost this Week:  -0.4 lbs
Pounds Lost to Date:  -36.8 lbs

It’s not much, but at least the scale is going in the right direction.  This week has been a bit crazy at work – as evidenced by my 4 day late posting of my weekly update.  So I haven’t been home much this week to cook dinner.  I did make a meal plan last weekend but it’s sort of been shot down with the curve ball that work threw at me this week.

If I end up with some time the next couple days or over the weekend these are a few ideas I am going to try and whip up:

Grilled Mahi Mahi with Mango Avocado Salsa (8 pts+) 
Pork Spare Ribs with Peach Jalapeño sauce (7 pts+)   (adapted from THIS recipe and used ribs instead of pork loin)

Tuesday, August 20, 2013

Week 32 Results

Pounds Lost this Week:  -2.2 lbs
Pounds Lost to Date:  -36.4 lbs
I’m very happy to see the scale go down this week.  Yay!  Hopefully this isn’t just another yo-yo week and the trend only continues.  I sort of feel like I’m already in maintenance mode already, but I still have another 1.8lbs left to go until I hit the goal weight set for me by weight watchers.  I’m determined to hit that number before I mentally switch into maintenance. 
Here’s this week’s dinner menu. 
Sunday 8/18:  Italian-StyleBraised Rabbit with roasted onion potatoes (10 pts+ total) 
Monday 8/19:  (a repost from last week since we ended up going out last Wednesday.)  Garlic Lime Marinated Pork Chops (5 pts+) with Cilantro Lime Rice (5 pts+)
Tuesday 8/20:  Chicken sausage with broccoli and provolone. (6 pts+)  Served with side salad. (1 pt+ for dressing)
Wednesday 8/21:  Naked turkey bruschetta burger (7 pts+) 
Thursday 8/22:  Bangin' Grilled Shrimp Skewers with ½ cup brown rice and sautéed zucchini (7 pts+ total)
Friday 8/23:  leftovers
Saturday 8/24:  leftovers or takeout

Monday, August 19, 2013

200th post! Well, close enough ;)

I just realized that I missed my 200th post.  Oops!  So this is really post #202.  Eh, it’s close enough ;)  It’s a little sad that it’s taken me almost 3 years to hit 200 posts (not to mention my 100th post was just about 2 years ago) but who’s counting, right??  Happy 200!!

Monday, August 12, 2013

Weeks 30 & 31 Results

Pounds Lost this Week:  +1.8 lbs
Pounds Lost to Date:  -34.2 lbs

In the midst of my craziness last week I completely forgot to post an update.  It wasn’t very exciting…  there was no change.  Which is not necessarily a bad thing, but I had mentioned in my week 28 post that I had hoped to be hitting my goal weight at week 30.  Oops! 

This past week felt like a bit of a fail.  Those pesky 1.8 lbs from week 29 showed back up.  I didn’t have a meal plan last week because we were so incredibly busy so I’m sure that had something to do with it.  We ate a lot of quick foods and I tried to do my best to watch but I was having one of those “hunger” weeks and nothing was satisfying me. 

It’s really starting to get frustrating though that I can’t seem to get the momentum to get these last few pounds off.  I’ll just have to try harder this week and continue to try and stay focused and not stress out about it.

Here’s this week’s dinner menu. 

Sunday 8/11:   Mango & Jalapeño chicken sausage with mixed bell peppers (8 pts+)

Monday 8/12:   Greek Style Chicken and Roasted Potatoes (7 pts+)

Tuesday 8/13:  Penne & Chicken Tenderloins with Spiced Tomato Sauce (6 pts+)

Wednesday 8/14:  Garlic Lime Marinated Pork Chops (5 pts+) with Cilantro Lime Rice (5 pts+) and green beans (0 pts+)

Thursday 8/15:  Leftovers

Friday 8/16:  Super Skinny Sweet & Sour Chicken (7 pts+)

Saturday 8/17:  Leftovers (attending a birthday party)

Wednesday, July 31, 2013

Week 29 Results

Pounds Lost this Week:  -0? lbs
Pounds Lost to Date:  -36.0 lbs

I am questioning my weigh in this week because of some things I ate (and drank) over the weekend at birthday parties we attended.  When I weighed in Monday morning the numbers showed a gain of 1.8 lbs.  However, I re-weighed myself this morning and the numbers showed me down .2 lbs from last week…  so I’m calling it a draw. LOL  The next few weeks will be tough to stay on the program as I go through what I’ve dubbed “birthday party mania”.  We have about 8 birthday parties to attend in a matter of 4 weeks! (would have been 9 but I said no to one).  I'm determined though to not let the birthday cake get the better of me!

Here’s this week’s dinner menu. 

Sunday 7/28:   Grilled chicken legs with BBQ sauce (10 pts+) and roasted summer squash (2 pts+)

Monday 7/29:   working late (got pizza)

Tuesday 7/30:  worked late (leftovers)

Wednesday 7/31:  Taco Night!  Tacos using ground chicken & whole grain shells (6 pts+) with fat free spicy refried beans (2 pts+)

Thursday 8/1:  Chicken with Mushrooms & artichokes in garlic white wine sauce (6 pts+) with green beans (0 pts+) and side salad (1 pt+ for dressing)

Friday 8/2:  Beer Marinated Chicken Thighs (9 pts+) with side salad (1 pt+ for dressing)

Saturday 8/3:    no meal plan (attending a party)

Wednesday, July 24, 2013

Countdown to K has begun!

Look what showed up in my mailbox yesterday...
My first reaction was “WHAT????  already?!?”  Then I looked at the calendar and realized it was almost August.  My big man starts Kindergarten in 46 days.   OMG!!  I guess I have been in a little bit of denial that this is really happening, but it’s COMING. and coming FAST!  He sat at our dining room table last night flipping through it picking out the backpack he wants (transformers) and new markers, lunchbox, etc. 
We may still be waiting for his teacher assignment, but we’ve got the supplies list and he said he’s ready to get on the bus and head off to the “big kid school” (as he calls it).  He might be ready but I don’t know how ready I am….  Even though he’s been going to “school” since he was 17 months old this is going to be different.  Taking the bus…having homework…making new friends…being in a bigger class environment.  I’m both excited and a little nervous for him at the same time. 
For now though, I'm not thinking about that.  We’ll just stick to some back to school shopping and try to hit the stores a bit early before everything gets sold out.

Tuesday, July 23, 2013

Week 28 Results

Pounds Lost this Week:  -3.8 lbs
Pounds Lost to Date:  -36.0 lbs

Only one week back on the plan and what a difference!  I had to do a double take (and triple weight check) yesterday morning just to make sure the scale wasn’t lying.  I wasn’t expecting this much of a loss this week so I’m ecstatic and highly motivated to keep it up!  I’ve surpassed the 35 lbs mark and only have 2.2 lbs to go to hit the “goal” weight I had set for myself on Weight Watchers.  Even though I haven’t been obsessing about hitting a certain weight, at this point I really want to hit that number since I’m so close I can taste it (no pun intended).  I’m hoping that by week 30 I can report back that I’ve hit my goal and have switched into maintenance mode. 

Here’s this week’s dinner menu. 

Sunday 7/21:   Lobster Rolls (6 pts+)

Monday 7/22:   (I moved this from Saturday b/c we ended up going out with our friends instead of BBQ’ing at home)
Asian Grilled Chicken Thighs (6 pts+)  I used skinless boneless thighs instead of breasts with Asian Cabbage Mango Slaw (2 pts+)

Tuesday 7/23:  Grilled hot dog (no bun) with baked beans & grilled corn on the cob (8 pts+ total for everything)

Wednesday 7/24:  Skinny Lemon Glazed Chicken (6 pts+) with ½ cup brown rice (4 pts+)

Thursday 7/25  Grilled chicken sausage (5 pts+) with grilled zucchini (0 pts+)

Friday 7/26:  Spicy Shrimp Fried Rice (8 pts+)

Saturday 7/27:    no cooking (attending a party)

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