Monday, April 29, 2013

Week 16 Results

Pounds Lost this Week:  -2.2 lbs
Pounds Lost to Date:  -28.0 lbs

This week’s loss more than makes up for last week’s small gain. Yay!  Seeing this also leads me to believe that maybe last week wasn’t a true gain and was just extra bloat from too much salt or something.  You-know-who showed up this week as well, which only reaffirmed my bloat suspicion.  I’ve been keeping up with running and this week worked on conquering the hills that surround where I live.  It was tough and slow going but I did it.  I’ve also been drinking mango, ginger infused water.  It’s supposed to boost my metabolism.  Who knows if it really does but I’ve been drinking so much water that it’s a welcome change to have something that tastes a little different.  If you want to try it yourself you can find the recipe HERE.

Here’s this week’s dinner menu:

Sunday 4/28:   Spinach Lasagna Roll ups (6 pts+) with side salad (0 pts+) 

Monday 4/29Slow cooker Thai Chicken over miracle noodles (8 pts+) 

Tuesday 4/30Baked Lump Crab Cakes (5 pts+) with side salad (0 pts+) 
Wednesday 5/1:  Leftovers (have an event to attend)

Thursday 5/2:  Ginger & Cilantro baked Tilapia (6 pts+) with steamed broccoli (0 pts+)

Friday 5/3:  Cilantro Thai Grilled ChickenThighs (7 pts+) with side of lemon green beans and salad (0 pts+) (ended up not making this last week)

Saturday 5/4:   Leftovers or take out

Friday, April 26, 2013

My Journey to Green

In honor of Earth Day this week I am dedicating this post to going GREEN.  I’ve always been an earth conscious person but over the past year I’ve furthered my journey over to green.  You’d be surprised how a few small little changes can make a huge impact on our environment.  While I’m in no way 100% green, I do what I can and what I’m comfortable with. 
I’ve always recycled.  Ever since I was younger my parents recycled.  It was just something we did.  I’m slowly getting my husband to do it and find myself less and less pulling things out of the trash bin and moving them to the recycling bin.  Little by little I’ve added on other things such as using reusable shopping bags and most recently I’ve been buying more organic food. 

If you take a closer look around the produce section of your supermarket you’ll notice that a lot of them come from outside the USA.  The pesticides that are used in the US are bad enough that I don’t even want to think about what they’re using in Chile or Uruguay.  Not to mention what kind of genetically modified foods are also lurking in our supermarkets.  (those little stickers on your produce DO actually mean something other than price).  Eating organic drastically reduces your exposure to these harmful pesticides and GMOs, but it can also make for an expensive shopping trip.   To keep down cost I stick to the “dirtydozen” list and buy those items as organic. The Environmental Working Group publishes this list along with its partner list (the Clean 15).  The lists include the top foods that have the highest & lowest content of pesticides.  The highest (on the dirty list) are the ones that should be purchased organic and the lowest (the clean list) are OK to be purchased non-organic.

If you’ve thought of going green but don’t quite know where to start, try making one small adjustment in your life.  Whether that’s recycling, or using your own bags at the supermarket or carpooling to work.  You don’t have to make crazy changes in your life and you also don’t have to do everything.  These are some of the simple changes I’ve made in my life:
  • Recycle all of my paper, metal & plastic
  • Use reusable bags when shopping
  • Use energy efficient light bulbs & appliances
  • Buy organic foods off of the “dirty dozen” list  
  • Changed to green cleaning products & laundry detergent
  • Use reusable coffee and water cups at work
  • Purchase oxybenzone-free sunscreen for summer
There are of course more aggressive things you can do to be green if you’re already doing everything I’ve said.  Such as:
  • Switching to holistic medicine
  • Buy a hybrid or electric car
  • Use paraben-free makup
  • Use sodium laurel sulfate (SLS) free shampoo & conditioners
  • Implement Meatless Mondays.  It’s not just about being vegetarian. If everyone in the US were to eat meat one less day a week it would save 99.6 megatons of greenhouse gas emissions caused by livestock farming. (that’s the equivalent of taking 19.2 million cars off U.S. roads for a year!!)
  • Composting kitchen scraps
If you want to read more here are some resources to check out:

Monday, April 22, 2013

Week 15 Results

Pounds Lost this Week:  +0.8 lbs
Pounds Lost to Date:  -25.8 lbs

I would be lying if I didn’t say I was disappointed with my weigh in today.  It’s the first time in 15 weeks that I haven’t had any type of loss, let alone a gain, so it’s kind of a blow to my ego and my motivation.  But it’s barely a pound, so I can’t beat myself up too much over it.  I can only blame myself and it could be due to a number of reasons.  Last week was one of those weeks where I was just SO hungry.  Nothing was satisfying me and drinking gallons of water was just not cutting it.  Could be that the uptick in my exercise was making me more ravenous and I should have adjusted my protein intake to help with the hunger.  Whatever the reason though, today starts a new week and a new beginning.  To end on a positive note, I increased my mileage and ran 3.5 miles yesterday.  I was pretty proud of myself :)  

Here’s this week’s dinner menu:

Sunday 4/21:   Store bought sweet sausages (5 pts+ per link) with sautéed zucchini and garlic (0 pts+)

Monday 4/22:  Taco Monday! (using ground turkey & whole grain shells 6 pts+) with fat free spicy refried beans (2 pts+)

Tuesday 4/23:  Leftovers  (volleyball night)

Wednesday 4/24:  Sprint Stir Fried Chicken with Sugar Snap Peas & Carrots (5 pts+) and ½ cup white rice (5 pts+)

Thursday 4/25:  Ham Steak (3 pts+) with sweet potato fries (5 pts+)

Friday 4/26:  Cilantro Thai Grilled Chicken Thighs (7 pts+) with side of lemon green beans and salad (0 pts+) 

Saturday 4/27:   Leftovers (we will be running around between tee ball & birthday parties)

Saturday, April 20, 2013

The Money Motivator

Now that A is turning 5 we thought it was about time that he could start earning an allowance and do consistently do more chores around the house.  Money has proven to be a big motivator for him (it helped with potty training!) so why not use an allowance to help motivate him to get his chores done around the house. 

We decided on using a punch card system for him to earn his allowance rather than giving him just a weekly rate.  For every chore he completes he earns a punch in his card.  Once the card is full he can turn it in for his allowance ($5).  He can also earn extra punches for extra good behavior or for doing something extra special.  My thinking was that it would motivate him even more (to get the punches) and if he decided to skip a chore or behaved poorly that day, then he doesn’t earn a punch for his chore.  He will (hopefully) feel the consequences being it will only take longer to fill the punch card and earn his allowance. 
The punch card itself looked pretty easy to make and I had started to try my hand at it on the computer.  But I got frustrated after about an hour and decided to chuck it and purchase them (cheap) from this seller on Etsy.

A is pretty excited to get started and to start earning his own money.  I told him that he needs to save half of it and the other half he can spend on whatever he wants.  Here’s a brief list of the chores that he will be responsible for and the frequency.  Not every chore will be every day.

  • cleaning his room (daily or as needed)
  • feeding the dog (daily)
  • clearing his dirty dishes after meal times (daily)
  • cleaning up toys in the playroom (daily)
  • putting away wii remotes when done playing (as needed)
  • helping to empty the dishwasher (couple times a week)
  • helping load the laundry in washer/dryer (couple times a week)

Friday, April 19, 2013

Cowabunga Dudes!

When I asked my son a few months ago what kind of theme he wanted for his 5th birthday party I got a a different answer depending on the day of the week it was.  Agengers….Transformers….Phineas & Ferb…..Super Mario Brothers….  Until finally he settled on Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles. (they're baaack!)  This past Saturday we hosted 18 little ninja turtles at a local nature preserve to celebrate Anthony’s 5th birthday.  And what a party it was!! 

The naturalist at the center showed the kids some of the rescued animals they care for; including a snake, rabbit, and a ferret.  She also had items available for them to touch and explore like a turtle shell, deer skin and a snake skin.  Then we all went outside to look at the eagles and hawks and to play some animal themed games.  By the end of the hour session everyone was more than ready for pizza and cupcakes!!

Invitations and thank you notes I created myself using GIMP software (it's free!) and printed out on cardstock via Vistaprint.  I drew inspiration from this invitation I found on pinterest.  The thank you cards I made to match the invitation and made up the saying inside based on what a ninja turtle might say ;)

I was surprised at how difficult it was to find paper goods.  Maybe because the cartoon is so new that products haven’t made it into mainstream party stores yet, but I couldn’t even find them online when I was trying to order ahead of time (me being the planner that I am).  I finally found all of the paper goods at Target less than a month before the party (phew!!)  I even found masks on clearance!  Double score!!

My son may be one of the few kids on earth that does not like cake.  S(hocking, I know)  He prefers fruit or crunchy snacks over sweets.  For his school party I sent in an array of crunchy snacks for him to share with his friends, but for his party I felt like we needed a traditional cake or cupcakes.  But since I wasn’t sure if he was going to eat any, I figured why not save some money and try my hand at making cupcakes this year.  So off to google and pinterest I went in search of a vanilla cupcake recipe.  If I was going to make them, then I was going to do it from scratch.  I settled on Magnolia’s Vanilla Cupcake recipe.  Very easy and turned out delicious!  I even added some candy bits into the batter to make it more of a ‘funfetti’.  I then decorated them to look like ninja turtles – which was surprisingly quite easy.  I tinted the icing using green gel food coloring, the candy eyes were store bought, used fruit by the foot/fruit roll ups for the eye masks and used black gel icing to draw the mouth. I used these as my inspiration (from pinterest of course).

For the favors I knew a long time ago that I wanted to package whatever it was that I gave out in a pizza box.  Because ninja turtles love…..what else, but PIZZA!  Our local pizza place was nice enough to give me the pizza boxes for free (yay!) and I created the label in powerpoint, printed out and glued onto the boxes.   I found inspiration for the label via pinterest but decided to recreate the design myself so that I could print in a larger size than the seller was offering. 
I loved the idea of giving out a single item to the kids.  In the long run it probably cost about the same or minimally more as a goody bag full of lots of little stuff but honestly, the little stuff typically gets thrown away by a lot of parents a few days after the party (I know I’m guilty of it).  Finding 20 of the same t-shirt in varying sizes proved a challenge, but I ultimately found them online at The Children’s Place.  Boys got Ninja Turtle t-shirts and the girls got green shirts with hearts.

All of the ninja turtles who attended had a fantastic time and most of all the birthday boy had the best 5th birthday!!  The joy on his face that day made all of the preparations and time I spent planning completely worth it.
Happy Birthday my Big Man!


Monday, April 15, 2013

Week 14 Results

Pounds Lost this Week:  -1.6 lbs
Pounds Lost to Date:  -26.6 lbs

I am (of course) thrilled to have another week with a loss.  My hard work is really paying off. Slow and steady wins the race…  Speaking of races, I started incorporating some running/walking and strength training into my routine last week because I’m training for some upcoming events in June & September (more to come on those).  To my surprise I was able to run 2.5 miles my first time out.  I’ve never been a runner and always hated it.  But I find running outside is MUCH easier and interesting than on a treadmill in the gym.  I downloaded an app for my phone that tells me how far I’ve gone and tracks my pace as well.  The first day I was SO sore that I could barely move the next day.  But after this weekend I feel like a million bucks.  I guess that means I’m ready for 3 miles ;) 

Here’s this week’s dinner menu:

Sunday 4/14:   Garlic Lime Marinated Pork Chops (5 pts+);  ½ cup brown rice (4 pts+) and salad (1 pt+ for dressing) 

Monday 4/15:  Ham Steak (3 pts+) with zucchini casserole (3 pts+)

Tuesday 4/16:  Sesame Chicken (5pts+) with ¼ cup jasmine rice (4 pts+)

Wednesday 4/17:  Leftovers  (tee ball practice)

Thursday 4/18:  Skinless chicken thighs with shallots in red wine vinegar (6 pts+) with sautéed garlic brussel sprouts (0 pts+)

Friday 4/19:  Chili Shrimp & Asparagus Stir Fry (4 pts+) with ½ cup white rice (5 pts+)

Saturday 4/13:   Leftovers

Thursday, April 11, 2013

Fabulous Five

Friday, April 11, 2008  3:47 pm

Wow, five years.  It’s a bit incomprehensible that five whole years have gone by since that rainy Friday afternoon when I held a little peanut of a boy in my arms for the first time as we welcomed him into our lives.  Four was a much more kind age to us than three or two ever were.  Anthony went through a LOT of maturing this past year.  Not to say that the last 12 months were all puppy dogs and rainbows, but we noticed a positive difference in some of his behaviors as compared to a year before.

 Dear Anthony,
Such a bright, caring & funny kid you are!!  You amaze me more and more with every day that goes by and I am so very lucky that god chose me to be your Mommy.  You have such a kooky sense of humor and a laughter that is just infectious.  Keep telling jokes and being silly.  The world can always use a dose of silliness. 
As I look at you now, there are certain things I admire about you.  Your generosity for one.   I am always amazed at the way you share with others.  Toys, food, crayons...whatever.  At only five years old you are already putting the feelings of others before yours.  I am simply in awe of you for that.  You are constantly thinking of your friends/family and what they might like to have.  You have a kind, gentle soul that is wise beyond its years.
This coming year brings with it so much newness.  A new school.  new friends.  new experiences. I will try my hardest to show you the right path, but I am bound to make mistakes. Please forgive me for them.  I see so much of myself in you and at times I want to shield you from the world so that you don’t get hurt.  But I need to keep reminding myself that you need to go through these experiences (like I did) so that you can grow to be the best man you can be.  I’m so proud of the boy you’ve grown into in the short 5 years that I’ve know you.  

Happy 5th Birthday to the pint sized man who completes my world!!!

I love you to the moon & back,

photo credit:  Dan Stockfield

Photo Credit:  Dan Stockfield

Photo Credit:  Dan Stockfield

Monday, April 8, 2013

Week 13 Results

Pounds Lost this Week:  -1.4 lbs
Pounds Lost to Date:  -25.0 lbs

I’m happy to announce another loss this week.  What makes this week even better is hitting the 25 pound mark!  I’m also at the same weight I was before I got pregnant with Anthony.  I am so incredibly proud of myself for making it these past 3 months.  I am not sure what it is this time around but I feel a mental shift this time.  I’ve dieted before, I’ve been this weight before and I’ve told myself before that I’m not going to put the weight back on.  But something in the back of my mind tells me that I’m serious this time around.  I’m feeling so much healthier and more confident.  Now if I could only find a way to add more hours to the day so that I could get more sleep I’d be all set!

Here’s this week’s dinner menu.

Sunday 4/7:   Roasted whole chicken with rosemary and lemon (pts vary depending on part) with side of sautéed brussel sprouts with lemon & garlic (0 pts)  I swear this is the last time I’m moving this recipe.  We had a party on Saturday night so I didn’t get to make this.  But I made it Sunday and it was delicious!  The chicken stayed so moist & juicy.  Definite recipe keeper. 

Monday 4/8:  Leftovers.  Volleyball night.

Tuesday 4/9:  Flank steak with tomato & onion (4 pts+) side salad

Wednesday 4/10:  Leftovers.  First night of tee ball practice.

Thursday 4/11:  Special dinner out for A’s 5th Birthday!!!

Friday 4/12:  Garlic Lime Marinated Pork Chops (5 pts+) with side of garlic asparagus

Saturday 4/13:   Cilantro Thai Grilled Chicken (7 pts+) with side of lemon green beans

Tuesday, April 2, 2013

I’ve been Freed!

I am no longer a jury duty virgin.  I went to the courthouse yesterday and performed my civic duty.  The process itself was interesting to watch and they were pretty efficient given the 80 people that showed up for service that day. 
I had built up in my head that I was going to be stuck in the courthouse all day, but in actuality I was done and freed by lunch time.  They began by splitting us up into 3 groups for the 3 different cases that were going on that day (2 civil and 1 criminal).  I was crossing my fingers that I would end up in the criminal case room.  I figured if I was going to serve as a juror the criminal case would be the most exciting. 
My group was brought upstairs to the courtroom where the judge questioned all 30 of us about our general background.  Things like, where we were born, where we currently lived, marital status, number of kids, occupation, etc.  I was pretty psyched to find out we were being questioned for the criminal case but when the judge mentioned that the trial would last for approximately 10 days that balloon deflated a little bit.  After the questioning we were all led out to the hall where we waited for the lawyers to make their decision.  After about only 15 minutes they called us all back in and announced who the jurors would be.  This particular case only needed 3 additional jurors since they had filled most of the jury from last week’s pool, so the odds of me getting picked were really low.  Unknown to us, it turned out that the 3 they needed also had to be men so there was no way I was ever getting picked to begin with.  
A small piece of me is a little bummed that I didn’t get picked.  I think it would have been cool to go through the process.  But I’m happy to not be driving to the courthouse for the next 10 days and sitting through testimony and evidence.   Now I’m free for the next 6 years!

Monday, April 1, 2013

Week 12 Results

Pounds Lost this Week:  -1.6 lbs
Pounds Lost to Date:  -23.6 lbs

Another week accomplished!  I was having a hard time finding the motivation this week after being on vacation and not counting points for 2 weeks.  It would have been very easy to just push everything aside and say forget it, but then I told myself that I haven’t worked by butt off for the last 3 months to just say forget it.

I recently went clothes shopping for a couple things and instead of it being a daunting and depressing experience I had to hold myself back from buying everything I tried on!   The best part was finding out that I was back into single digit size pants and I even bought a few size small shirts.  I haven’t bought size small since college!

I guess I had my own doubts about just how far I could come because I didn't really take any good before pictures of myself that I could compare after I’m done.  Since I started dieting Jan 1, I looked back at pictures from December and the holidays to try and find a "before" picture.  It’s amazing how hard it was to find a picture that wasn't just of my face.  I really tried my hardest to keep out of full length of pictures because I hated how I looked other than in close up pictures.  I managed to find one.  While it’s not of me alone, it does the job of showing just how far I've come over the past 3 months.  The left picture is me at Christmas and the right was taken just yesterday on Easter Sunday.

Here’s this week’s dinner menu.

Sunday 3/31: Easter Sunday.  No menu.

Tuesday 4/2: Ham steak with pineapple (6 pts) and steamed asparagus (0 pts)

Wednesday 4/3: Grilled Chicken Bruschetta (6 pts) 

Thursday 4/4:  Leftovers night

Friday 4/5:  Chicken Francese (7 pts) with roasted garlic brussel sprouts (0 pts) 

Saturday 4/6:  We ended up going to visit friends last Saturday night so I tabled this dinner to this week.  Roasted whole chicken with rosemary and lemon (5 pts) with side of steamed broccoli & garlic (0 pts)

Related Posts Plugin for WordPress, Blogger...