Weekly Weigh-In 4

Time for another weigh-in, is it? I was going to post pictures monthly, but I honestly don’t see a change, because although I have lost weight, it hasn’t really been a ton. Usually I lose about 8 or 10 pounds a month, but this month has been quite hard on me. I just got sick, and it seems to be sticking around. I really hope that this isn’t like last year, where every time I would try to go running… it just felt weird to breathe the cool air, and really messed with how I felt.

Also, I woke up a little late today, so I ran out the door to get my daughter to preschool and never got a chance to weigh myself this morning. Not a huge biggie though, I weighed myself tonight and I was still at the same weight. Therefore, I know I have still lost weight this week, but I’ll have a tangible number tomorrow morning instead.

I only did sort of alright with my resolutions this week since I really haven’t felt like doing much. I haven’t been drinking any good amounts of water, and I am getting some light exercise, but not nearly as much as I wish I was getting. I keep bringing my boyfriend into town later at night after the kids are in bed (so that Grampy just has to keep an ear out for them) and we go for some streetlight walks. Last nights walk was wonderful, our town was getting ready for a street hockey tournament so there was music playing and an all around feeling of pride in the community. Usually our walks last from 20 to 30 minutes. Not too fast, slow enough to just enjoy each other’s company and talk, but fast enough to be able to get our heart rates up a bit. Hey, even Aldric is enjoying it… so it’s really a win-win here. I get him to exercise, he barely notices.

Also, new this week. EATING HEALTHY YAY! I made a list last week, and didn’t really stick to it because we never had a chance to go pick up the meat (we shop at two different stores in the area), so I just reused last week’s list again, and it’s going over much better. Last night we had our “Treat meal” which was spaghetti. And this morning I ate some fruit salad instead of cereal simply because that was really what I felt like eating. But either way, it’s still quite healthy. And I never knew I could love fruit so much! I just add a dollop of greek yogurt and a bit of honey and presto, instant breakfast. Just as quick as cereal, but it seems to keep me fuller for longer, and I really love eating it… actually… just writing about it makes me want to go get some more… be right back.

Yum.

Okay, so for this week, again the main focus will be on me getting healthy again. I want to boost fluid intake, because I should anyway since I’m sick. I also need to see if I can fit just a little more exercise in my day. Thankfully my boyfriend will be helping me clean up tomorrow, because a clean house means more time to work out. The living room got a little out of hand since I’ve been sick, but with his help tomorrow it should be back up and running. Lastly, I want to actually really give a good attempt at sticking with this meal plan for the week.

Hopefully it won’t be too hard,
Barb

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Healthy Meal Plan & Grocery List (1 week)

So, as promised here is the meal plan and grocery list I was talking about the other day. I just listed “Chili ingredients” as it’s own little section since there are simply too many variations for me to go list the ingredients for. Let me know if you’d like to know my chili recipe!
Anyway, it’s made so that you can just bring the grocery list with you, while keeping the meal plan itself in your binder or wherever you store those things. It’s relatively healthy, and has a spot for you to add a few extras, just in case. Who knows, maybe you can’t survive without pineapple in your fruit salads?
The best advice I would give for sticking with this is simple, pick the day you’ll be least busy. Go grocery shopping, and when you get home, do your food prep! Make the salad, fruit salad, and whatever else you need to do. You’ll thank yourself so much for that when you run into a busy patch in your week and the healthy food is sitting there ready to go! Also, do some prep the night before. Like put your frozen meat in the fridge, cut up some veggies for tomorrow’s supper if you would like. It takes a bit of thought, and it takes some action and work, but in the end it’s worth it.

Here’s a picture of this week’s haul! Delicious, healthy, nutritious food.
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Remember, if you’re working out all the time and you have awesome abs, they’ll never show through if you can’t lose the fat that’s sitting on top of them, so fuel your body with smart choices (at least most of the time!) So clean up your eating act now by following this meal plan!

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Here’s the meal plan & list in .PDF form for you to save to your computer as well!
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(I just ask that you don’t claim it as your own and use it all over the place.)

Let me know if you’ve got any requests or questions!
Barb

Weekly Weigh-in 3

This week hasn’t been exactly the epitome of health. I’m coming down with a cold of some sort, and feeling like crap. I got addicted to playing the Sims 3 which kept me up late, very late, into the night. Surprisingly enough, I’ve had a good amount of energy during the day, but I know that if I keep these awful habits up, I’ll end up right back where I started. On the good side though, my weight is still dropping. I can’t be 100% sure of how much I’ve lost due to the scale problem, but whaddya know, I FINALLY seem to have found one that works! It’s such a good feeling to know I can actually trust this one, hahaha. So I know I’ve dropped approximately a pound during this week of laziness. Also good news? I went grocery shopping, and bought a ton of good, delicious, healthy foods. Stocking my house with good foods has really helped me eat healthier during the day. I’ll post the lists and more details on that later though. Of course it’s too early for me to have lost any inches, but that’s alright. At least I’m headed in the right direction. I need to take a new set of body measurements anyway.
Also, when I felt like doing nothing, I still put my younger daughter in her stroller and went for a walk while Estelle was in daycare. It wasn’t too long, probably about 20-30 minutes, but it was a whole lot better than the nothing I was going to do originally. I’m just sick and tired, of being sick and tired. I might not be able to do anything about the sick part at this moment, other than rest up when I can and take medication, but I am seriously done with being tired.
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Usually my babe is a little happier when mommy is snapping pictures, but it was a little too close to her nap time.

This weeks goals:
Feel better and get over this cold.
Work out at least three times this week.
Go for at least one walk/jog!

Weekly Weigh-in 2

Whoops, missed a week! Mostly because I seem to have the WORST luck with scales! Seriously, I have two scales sitting next to my garbage bin getting ready to be thrown out, and this time, I thought to myself, “Since I seem to be having such bad luck with digital scales, I’m not going to buy a digital one!” So I bring home my new scale… and it reads 10 lbs. heavier than the last. I assumed that it must be correct, because it was new, and it was zeroed and whatnot… then my father has since found out that it’s simply not correct. Boo! However, it has been giving me a sort of way to track myself. According to my new scale, I’ve lost four pounds over the past two weeks. Not too shabby, but no inches as of yet.
I’m not really depressed about this, however, because I wasn’t expecting a huge weight loss at the start this time. Number 1, I haven’t really changed my eating habits. So sure, exercise helps, but it’s obviously only half of the battle here. I even had a cake-off with my boyfriend! Number 2, I’ve been doing strength training and not a whole ton of cardio like I used to do every time I would start up again. I changed my methods because I honestly enjoy feeling the next-day burn in my muscles. Like after leg day, when I get up and walk around… it’s just a nice reminder, not painful, just… nice. My favorite type of burn? Ab burn for sure! It makes me feel so productive on the one area of my body I dislike the most.
In the midst of all this, a new friend of mine suggested we go for a walk. I sort of imagined like a walk around the area, it takes about an hour or so.. then…. whaddya know… We just kept walking. I didn’t bother asking, and then we had walked much further than I had imagined. Long story short, we ended up walking for two hours round-trip. It was great though! It reminded me of a few summers back when my group of friends would walk everywhere! It was the only means of transport that we all had access to, so we used it. I was in much better shape during that time, so it wasn’t nearly as intimidating!
Anyway, this week I have a couple of resolutions for myself to (hopefully) stick to:
-Drink more water.
-Stop eating after 8 p.m. aside from occasional popcorn.
-Do a little more cardio!
-Buy a new scale…

We’ll see how lucky I get with the last one. I legitimately suck at buying personal scales! Ugh. Oh well.

Keep it up, and sweat it out!
Barb

Organize Now! – Week 3

So, how did I do last week? I think I did pretty alright. I do still have to work on scheduling in time to do the things I wish I did more of, but otherwise things are great. Also, I am getting 7-8 hours of sleep nowadays, but it appears to be sort of on the wrong side. I’m still going to bed late, and therefore sleeping in. That two hour readjustment is something I’m still working on.

So now, on to week 3. Man am I ever glad I’ve been busy working on some other things! Because this week is a breeze.
I already do all of my scheduling in one beautiful planner, the girls don’t belong to many activities yet, and therefore we don’t need monthly meetings about our family schedules.
I do need to focus on working on my to-do list. I can’t leave my planner next to me when I go to bed as one of my daughters will surely get to it and begin uhhhh… “scheduling” in her own work, just like she checked off a number of things in this book for me well before I even had a chance to get to them.. so I’m thinking maybe just a little notepad and pencil. That way I can still jot things down, and schedule them in the next day, but I won’t have to worry about the little hands.
Otherwise thd rest of this week is pretty much about making to-do lists. Seems easy enough… now all I need is one for house renovations, one for cleaning, one for heavy-duty cleaning, one for my outdoor area, one for my garden… hm, maybe this week will be slightly more time-consuming than originally thought afterall.

Oh well, it’s about time I started writing all of these things down!

Keep an eye out for a post about the recent organization that’s been going on.

Til next time,
Barb

Have money, will spend. (Budget Envelope Introduction)

Part of my organization and clean-up is my financials. I keep telling myself that I’ll go pull out money for this and that when I get a chance, and next thing I know… POOF! The money seems to have vanished. Am I the only one this happens to?

Didn’t think so ;).

There are two “worst parts” to this for me personally, number one… it makes no difference if it’s $500 or $5000, if it sits in the bank account, it’ll be gone before the next pay. Secondly, it doesn’t seem like we’re living a much more enriched life or anything if I spend it as opposed to bank it away. At least if we had a ton of awesome stuff to enjoy it would feel slightly more acceptable… but we don’t.

So now that we’ve wasted some money over the past few weeks, I’ve decided it was really time for a change. I want to be able to save more for the more important things in life! My dreams include travelling with my children, going out to places you dream about… I would love to see Australia and New Zealand one day. So, now what I’ve done is gone over my expenses and come up with these envelopes. I made them all from my random scrapbooking paper, because beautiful things make me happy, and at the end of the day, if it’s pretty I am more likely to use it. I know, I know, it’s stupid… but… why not?

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There are seven envelopes:
Gas 1
Gas 2
Groceries 1
Groceries 2
Bills
Mastercard
Extras
(Others you might want to include would be Rent/Mortgage, each separate bill, Children’s activity fund, or gym/classes fund)

These are our regular monthly expenses and it just about covers everything. Because of pay days, we get paid once a week, however, we tend to focus on a bi-weekly system. What I want to work down to is filling the envelopes once with the first pay of the month, and top them up throughout the month if absolutely necessary. This method will get the money out of my easy access, since I’ll no longer be able to simply swipe a card with seemingly endless possibilities. It makes sure that we’ve covered our basics (not that we’ve ever been in such a bad position that we couldn’t, I enjoy spending money… but I’m not THAT compulsive). Also, taking the money out means more will go directly into our savings, which is ALWAYS a good thing.
Beginning next month, I’m also going to start tracking receipts and transactions so that I can get a clearer image of what exactly it is that I’m spending money on and I can adjust my budget accordingly. My guess for the big money drain? Junk food. It’s time we started going full out grocery shopping again so that we don’t need to make a trip to the store every night to get supper. This is awful for so many reasons! But mainly in this instance I’m talking about the budget reason. I can usually feed this household three meals a day, for seven days (at least 3 adults and two children) for less than $200 a week. Usually, it’s more like $160. I hear that that’s nearly impossible, but with healthy, whole foods, I can do it all the time. All I need is the motivation to sit down and fully prepare a list. This is starting again now, due to this budget. I refuse to waste hard-earned money on crap food, which is just pushing me further away from both my health goals, as well as the financial goals I’m now coming up with!

The other plan I’m implementing with these envelopes is to pay my bills ON PAY DAY. I write down the exact amount I need to pay on each bill directly on my calendar located in my planner. On pay day, I just write “Pay bills” on the morning of to remind myself to look. This way I don’t have to look up all of my bills online and figure out how much I have to pay here and how much there, it’s all right there, no excuses. This way my bills are sure to be paid perfectly on time. I’m strongly considering putting aside an “emergency” fund as well, this way I could use it for things like replacing my windshield, instead of having to use either savings or having larger sums taken out of my pays.

Alright, well… I’m off to do a little more budgeting work to get this all figured out so that I can implement it next month. Should be including new meal plans too, since I’ll be making them myself!

Remember, if you don’t like the way you’re living… Change it!
Barb