Monday, December 31, 2012

The final wrap up of my 101 Things in 1,001 Days Project

In April 2010, I came up with a list of 101 things that I wanted to accomplish in 1,001 days. I didn’t accomplish everything on my list or even nearly as much as I would’ve liked, but the experience was great and I’m definitely going to start a new list.  Here’s how my final list wraps up as of 12/31/2012.

Home Improvement Goals
1. Decorate my house - This particular goal was pretty broad, so I’m going to own this one by calling it complete as of Dec 2011.  I finally managed to decorate my entire house for the holidays and it felt great!
2. Clean desk - I cleaned it in Dec 2010.
3. Keep desk organized for 3 months - I didn’t succeed in keeping this for 3 months in a row, but I made strides on keeping things more organized for longer periods of time, which is progress!
4. Finish remodeling the kids bathroom - I think I’m marking this one complete by default.  I wrote this with my old house in mind and since that house is under contract with potential new owners, I don’t see us making any additional improvements.  At my new house, the kids bathroom is in great shape, thank goodness!
5. Change the living room paint colors and window treatments -Completed in June 2010 at old house
6. Get a window treatment for the kitchen window - I wrote this with my old house in mind, but the kitchen window at my new house needs a window treatment also, so I’ll have to add this to the new list!
7. Create a manageable house cleaning schedule - I accomplished this in April 2011 and had hubby laminate it for me and everything.  I should have added that I need to implement the schedule on a regular basis.
8. Have fresh flowers on the kitchen table every week for a month -Completed December 2010 and plan to keep this up because I loved having flowers on the table
9. Decorate inside & out for Christmas - Completed December 2010 and loved every minute of it

Hobby Goals
10. Enter a photography contest - Didn’t make it happen.
11. Make a quilt - Didn’t make it happen, but found some fabulous things on Pinterest to help me accomplish this goal in the future.
12. Read 100 books - In August, I read “Gone Girl”.  (2012 book count - 11; Overall book count - 29)  This gave me some serious perspective on how fast I reader I thought I was.  This wasn’t a realistic goal and now I see that.
13. Go to a book signing - My BFF Shannon & I went to see our FAVE author, Jen Lancaster at a book signing in Atlanta in May 2011.  It was AWESOME!
14. Read all of the Harry Potter books - I have finished books 1 through 4 and am currently reading book 5.  I’ve been “reading” book 5 for MONTHS now.  It’s the longest in the series and the most boring, in my opinion.  However, I’m determined to finish the series, so I’m going to keep pushing on and will eventually finish this!
15. Join a book club - I joined an online book club on Goodreads in October 2011.  I’ve waned on keeping up with the group and am happy to be joining a local book club in January.
16. Learn to knit or crochet - I bought a book to teach myself and actually sat down and started working at it.  I need to devote more time to it and then I feel like I’ll pick it up quickly.
17. Knit or crochet a blanket - Not yet!
18. Craft with friends at least once a month - Got together with friends on several occasions to craft but not with consistency each month
19. Finish my Wreck This Journal - Did not happen.
20. Learn how to use my sewing machine - Did not happen, but I found a local store who offers inexpensive classes that I’m hoping to take sometime in the near future.
21. Sew a dress for each of my children - Did not happen.
22. Learn a new language - I’m determined to save up for some Rosetta Stone software so I can learn Spanish at home.  I also want to learn French!
23. Finish the cross stitch piece I started for my wedding - I finished it!!!  February 2012
24. Enroll in a pottery class - I had it booked at my alma mater and they cancelled the class the day before it was supposed to start.  Boo!
25. Print my blog in book form - I printed the book of entries for 2011, but I still want to order the other years of entries.  It’s a little pricey, but I’ll get there eventually!  
26. Enroll in a cake decorating class - I checked into this several times and could never work out the timing with my ridiculous schedule.  I’m hoping that while the kids are in camp this summer that I’ll be able to fit one of these classes in.
27. Take a photography class & learn how to use my camera - Same problem as the cake decorating class.  I’m hoping to be able to fit this in sometime next Fall from our local community college.
28. Blog twice a week - I did this sporadically throughout the project.
29. Cross stitch the Rainbow Bridge poem - Did not happen
30. Finish a heritage scrapbook for my mom - Did not happen
31. Finish a heritage scrapbook for my dad - Did not happen

Health & Exercise Goals
32. Get a massage - Completed August 2010
33. Stop biting my fingernails - Completed August 2010
34. Take a cooking class - Did not happen
35. Start a skincare routine - Completed August 2010 (but need to do a better job of keeping up with it regularly)
36. Exercise 5 days a week for a month - I did this in April 2012 and feel so much better!
37. Run a 5k - Did not happen, but am really hoping to do a Color Run next year.
38. Treat myself to a massage after losing 30lbs total - I did this in April 2012!
39. Treat myself to a massage after losing 60lbs total - I haven’t lost the weight yet.
40. Enjoy a new wardrobe after meeting my weight loss goal - I haven’t lost the weight yet.
41. Donate all of my old clothes after meeting my weight loss goal - I did donate a lot of my old clothes that I never wanted to get back into.  I look forward to donating even more as I continue the weight loss journey.
42. Get down to 120lbs - Not even close yet.
43. Maintain my goal weight of 120lbs for at least 3 months - I have to get there first!
44. Go on a horseback ride that involves galloping - Did not happen
45. Take my dog to the dog park once a week - Did not happen.  I’m such a bad dog mom.
46. Take my dog on a walk twice a week - Did not happen.
47. Play in a disc golf tournament - Did not happen
48. Go 7 days without eating junk food snacks - Completed September 2010
49. Eat 5 things that I've never tried before - I tried guacamole in October of 2010.  I tried zucchini for the first time in August 2011 and it was ok.  I tried asparagus in February of 2012 and I liken it to eating weeds.  Bleh.  I ate broccoli (raw & cooked) in April 2012.  I like it raw!  I tried hummus for the first time this year and it wasn’t half bad.  

Outdoors Goals
50. Go camping - My husband & Girl Scout co-leader talked me into taking my Daisy scouts camping in April 2012 and I’m very surprised to say that I enjoyed it!  This was my first time camping since I was about 12 years old.  Yay, me!
51. Grow an herb garden - Bought an herb garden in May 2010 and managed not to kill it for a month which is progress. Plan to actually plant an herb garden at our new house eventually.
52. Start a compost pile in the backyard - Did not happen
53. Landscape my front yard - Completed in June 2010 at old house
54. Build a flower box & plant flowers in it - Did not happen

Personal Goals
55. Get a tattoo - I picked out the exact one that I want but I haven’t taken the plunge yet.
56. Get a professional bra fitting - I want to lose the majority of weight before I do this.
57. Get my passport - Hasn’t happened yet.
58. Volunteer at an animal shelter - I took my Daisy Girl Scout troop to a local animal shelter in October 2011 and we made food toys for the cats and dogs.  It was awesome!
59. Become a published author - I’m totally claiming a win here since I printed my blog in book form and it’s professionally bound and pretty with a dedication page and table of contents and the whole nine yards.  That’s not too much of a stretch, right?!
60. Throw a dinner party - Completed November 2010 when we hosted Thanksgiving here for some wonderful friends who are like family
61. Watch Gone with the Wind - Did not happen
62. See Josh Groban in concert - Completed in June 2011 and he was GREAT!
63. Start a review blog - Completed in April 2010
64. Take singing lessons - Did not happen
65. Move to a bigger house - Completed in July 2010
66. Finish my will - Did not happen.  Shame on me.
67. Inspire someone else to make their own list - Completed in April 2010
68. Learn to drive a stick shift - Did not happen
69. Go whale watching - Did not happen
70. Ride in a limo - Did not happen
71. Go to see 2 concerts - Went to see Kings of Leon with my BFF Shannon in November 2010 and August 2011; Went to see Bon Jovi with my friend Valerie in May 2011
72. Volunteer in my community - I have been volunteering a TON with my kids school, so I totally think this counts.
73. Stay organized for 3 months - This was too broad of an item.
74. Watch a movie at a drive-in theater - Did not happen
75. Buy a pair of boots - Did not happen
76. Learn to wear/walk in heels - Did not happen and I no longer have the aspiration to make this happen.  
77. Buy a watch & actually wear it - I bought a cheap watch at Target, in June 2011, and I wore it faithfully until it kicked the bucket.  I need to get my nice Mickey Mouse watch fixed!
78. Go to Disney World with my hubby & kids - We went in October 2012!!
79. Get the interview with my grandparents converted to DVD - I finally did this and picked up the DVD’s in January 2012!  This means a lot to me because this is the only video that my family has of my grandparents.  My grandfather passed away more than a decade ago and I’m glad that I now have something to show my girls what a great person he was.
80. Book a trip to London - Did not happen
81. Assist in growing our Kindermusik program by 100% - I helped accomplish growing our program significantly before I left in August 2011.  It was a tough decision to leave, but the best for me & my family.
82. Apply to be on the Amazing Race - Did not happen
83. Play my own lottery numbers - Completed in May 2010
84. But a ticket for a dream home giveaway - Did not happen and probably never will now since we’ve bought a fantastic home that we never want to leave!
85. Sing karaoke at a bar/club - I need to do those singing lessons first.
86. Use my bread maker - Did not happen
87. Send my grandma a card once a week - Did not happen, but I’ve bought the cards and will make a concerted effort to make this happen next year.
88. Be debt free (except for the house) - We’re making progress but still have a ways to go.
89. Apply for membership with the DAR - Hasn’t happened yet, but the wheels are in motion
90. Own a minivan - I am the proud owner of a Toyota Sienna as of August 2011!!
91. Dye a blue streak in my hair - Missed the opportunity window last summer, so this is definitely going to happen next summer
92. Go 3 days without getting online - Completed in July 2010
93. Go an entire day without watching tv - Completed in July 2010
94. Have a professional photo shoot done of just me - I want to lose the weight first
95. Buy myself a Dooney & Bourke or Coach purse - To reward myself for surviving Week 1 of this new diet, I bought myself a Coach purse that I’ve had my eye on for 2 years!
96. Go on a horse drawn carriage ride with my family - We took a carriage ride together in Charleston, SC in July 2011.
97. Play miniature golf - Completed in November 2010 when hubby & I played the new "Glow Golf" course in town and had a blast
98. Take dinner to a friend - Completed in May 2010
99. Give a compliment to a complete stranger - I told the drive-thru barista at Starbucks that his glasses looked nice, in November 2011.
100. Save all of my coin change for 3 months & deposit it into my kids savings accounts - Did not happen, but definitely will be on the next list
101. Write a new list of 101 things in 1,001 days at the end of this project - The new list will debut in a couple of days!

Sunday, December 30, 2012

2012 - A Year in Review


I've done this meme for the last 2 years, courtesy of inspiration from a blog that I enjoy very much called Playgroups Are No Place for Children. Here is my 3rd installment of this fun look back on the year!

1. What did you do in 2012 that you'd never done before?
I started working at a bakery and made items that people bought and enjoyed.  It was very fulfilling!

2. Did you keep your New Year's resolutions and will you make more for next year?
I'm going to echo exactly how I answered this last year.  I successfully marked some things off the 101 Goals list that is ongoing, but I've stopped making resolutions for the most part. Something about setting myself up for failure has grown tiresome.

3. Did anyone close to you give birth?
My oldest friend (meaning that I've known and loved her for over 30 years now) gave birth to her second child this past November. I actually know several people who had babies this year, which is great because I love to live vicariously through them since we're done with having babies.

4. Did anyone close to you die?
I made a couple of trips to the funeral home this year, but not for anyone that was close to me.

5. What countries did you visit?
I didn't step outside the USA this year.

6. What would you like to have in 2013 that you lacked in 2012?
More financial stability and dedication.

7. What dates from 2012 will remain etched upon your memory, and why?
The end of November because Jake was called out of town at the last minute, resulting in the girls and I decorating our Christmas tree alone.  The tree fell 3 times, shattering almost every single glass ornament that we owned and had collected over 18 years together.  It broke my heart, but I'm learning not to put so much stock into holding onto things.

8. What was your biggest achievement of the year?
Going to Disney World with my family and seeing my girls truly enjoy the experience.

9. What was your biggest failure?
Not making the dent in our debt snowball that I was hoping to make.  Medical debt seems like a hole we're never going to climb out of.

10. Did you suffer illness or injury?
My bulging disc gives me trouble every now and then.  I developed a horrible skin infection after our trip to Disney World, which nearly resulted in surgery to resolve, but thankfully it finally cleared up.

11. What was the best thing you bought?
My favorite new acquisition this year was my iPad, but it was a gift from my Dad.

12. Whose behavior merited celebration?
My youngest daughter put a gift under the Christmas tree for us this year that was 100% from her beautiful heart.  It was addressed to mommy & daddy and it said "I love you very much and I wish to never grow up".  I'm a big Christmas morning crier anyway because nothing makes me happier than seeing the joy on my kids faces.  However, when I saw my hubby tearing up before he handed me my daughter's note, I knew I was in trouble!

13. Whose behavior made you appalled and depressed?
Politicians routinely appall me and since this was a major election year, there are just too many people to choose from.

14. Where did most of your money go?
Bills, bills, Disney World, bills...

15. What did you get really, really, really excited about?
Our Disney World trip this past October!

16. What song will always remind you of 2012?
"I Won't Give Up" by Jason Mraz

17. Compared to this time last year, are you: a)happier or sadder; b)thinner or fatter; c)richer or poorer?
I am sadder, a little thinner and poorer.

18. What do you wish you had done more of?
Gone to the gym.

19. What do you wish you had done less of?
Overscheduled myself.  I need to learn that slowing down doesn't mean I have to go into ultimate lazy mode.

20. How did you spend Christmas?
Christmas morning was spent at our house, opening presents with the kids and then my parents came over for a big breakfast with us.  That evening, we had dinner at my parents house after my brother & his family came in from out of town.  It was a lovely day.

21. Did you fall in love in 2012?
We fell in love with the newest member of our family, Scotty!  He is Big A's dog and an adorable long-haired red dachshund.

22. What was your favorite tv program?
This is a really hard one to answer because I watch a LOT of tv.  My favorite new show would have to be Duck Dynasty.  That show is HILARIOUS!

23. Do you hate anyone now that you didn't hate this time last year?
There are people I strongly dislike, but I don't hate anyone. And nobody new for sure.

24. What was the best book you read?
This year it was "Room" by Emma Donoghue.  Such a sad story, but very well written.

25. What was your greatest musical discovery?
I am a new fan of Phillip Phillips, the guy who won American Idol this year.  I was also delighted to discover that Little A is a pretty good piano player as she started lessons this year!

26. What did you want and get?
A trip to Disney World!

27. What did you want and not get?
To work on the landscaping at my house and replace my roof.

28. What was your favorite film of 2012?
It would have to be a tie between "Brave" and "Dr. Seuss's The Lorax".  Both were seen with my kids and both made all of us cry (in a good way).

29. What did you do on your birthday, and how old were you?
I turned 37 this year and it was pretty much just another typical day.  I think hubby & I went out to dinner, but I'm not 100% sure.  I have officially given up on getting a surprise party now.

30. What one thing would have made your year immeasurably more satisfying?
Being significantly closer to getting out of debt.

31. How would you describe your personal fashion concept of 2012?
I'm all about the comfort!  Jeans and t-shirts for this girl.

32. What kept you sane?
Spending so much time with my Girl Scout troop and working towards our family Disney trip.

33. What political issue stirred you the most?
I don't let many political issues get me riled up.

34. Who did you miss?
I miss seeing my nephew grow up.  Spending the last few days with him has been great, but reminds me how much I really miss him when he's 10 hours away.

35. Who was the best new person you met?
My bakery co-worker, Tammy, is the best new person I met.  She's very down to earth and funny and I enjoy working with her so much!

36. Tell us a valuable life lesson you learned in 2012.
"The first time someone shows you who they are, believe them." - Maya Angelou

37. Quote a song lyric that sums up your year.
"The trouble it might drag you down, If you get lost you can always be found, Just know you're not alone, Cause I'm going to make this place your home." - Phillip Phillips

Tuesday, July 24, 2012

1 Shade of Gray

I've said for years that vanity isn't really my thing.  I don't wear makeup.  I don't use hair styling products or tools.  Most of my clothes are between 3-7 yrs old and came from Target or Old Navy.  I'm just not very concerned about being stylish.  Or at least that's what I thought.

I'm coming up on my 37th birthday next month and I'm a little distressed that with each passing day, as I look in the mirror, I seem to spot just one more gray hair on my head.  And while the first few didn't bother me too much, I'm now officially REALLY bothered.  And I can't decide if I'm more bothered by the gray hairs themselves or the fact that they are making me feel old all of a sudden.

I take it as a sign that I received a Living Social deal today for a cut, color & style from a local salon that I've been wanting to try for quite a while.  And so, I'll call tomorrow and schedule the appointment that will officially segregate my life into 2 distinct time periods:

Angie B.C. - Before Coloring
Angie A.D.J. - After the Dye Job

Sunday, July 15, 2012

The Sunday Skinny

It has been a TOUGH week.  If you look up the term "stress eater" in the dictionary, you will see my picture with a blue ribbon because I was the champ this week!  Here's a sample of some of the things that were eating me, causing me to eat everything in sight.

1. My house (and everyone in it) had to be treated for head lice.

2. My microwave has been out of commission for 11 days now and looks to be down for at least another 7 days thanks to the perpetually crappy service that Best Buy provides.  Have I mentioned recently just how much I despise Best Buy?  And just how much I use my microwave on a daily basis?

3. My youngest child was diagnosed with her 2nd UTI this month and is now awaiting further tests to determine if she'll need surgery to fix a potential kidney valve issue.  She's been vomiting up her antibiotics and running a fever that is worrying to me.

4. Thanks to a lot of unexpected expenses (and lack of work hours available), I'm afraid we're not going to be able to pay for our big Disney vacation payment that's due next month.  (And yes, I realize that this is a "first world problem".  It still sucks.)

5. Aunt Flo decided to visit early this month.  That bitch.

I wish that was everything going on, but sadly, it's not.

This week just has to be a better week and I have to figure out a way to manage my stress that doesn't involve my eating habits.  So, let's try this again.  My goals for this week are:

1. No more than 3 carbonated drinks this week.
2. Exercise at least 3 mornings this week.
3. Try to eat at least 1 serving of fruit every day this week.

I'm hoping for a much more upbeat and positive report next Sunday!

Tuesday, July 10, 2012

Ten on Ten: July 2012

This is my first time participating in 10 on 10, hosted by a bit of sunshine.  The project is to take a picture an hour, for 10 consecutive hours on the 10th of the month.  Here's my day in pictures.

Getting ready for my morning workout

Arriving home as the sun begins to peek through the trees

These girls are ready to go to camp!

Doing a little paper shuffling at the office

Maleficent is so demanding!

Packing up for the day's later activities

Sully, my buddy

Lunch with friends is always tastier

The storm clouds are about to open up

My happy campers!


ten on ten button

Monday, July 9, 2012

Shortcomings

As the mom of 2 girls who are pretty close in age, I find myself struggling with the balance of building up their self-esteem but understanding that failure is a part of growing as a person.  I want them to know how proud I am of all their achievements.  I want them to know that as long as they choose a path in life that makes them happy, I will always be proud of them.  I want them to know that I love each of them equally, for different reasons, and strive to never hold one of them to a higher standard than the other.  I hope that they never look back on their childhood and feel like they disappointed me with any kind of regularity.  

I say all of this because as an adult, I struggle heavily with feeling like a failure at most things, especially when it comes to anything having to do with my parents.  My childhood, while it had many good things, had more than its fair share of moments when I was made to feel like I was a huge disappointment to my parents.  Much of it had to do with my younger brother being put on a pedestal and treated with what seemed like a complete different set of standards.  Some of it was brought on by my own stupid adolescent decisions in certain situations, but it seemed like there was a huge amount of pressure put on me from an early age to reach a certain standard.  And not reaching that standard resulted in yelling, belittling and taking away things that were given to me as gifts because I didn’t perform as expected.

I can remember taking tours of Ivy League college campuses from the age of 13.  Yet when it came time to tour colleges that I was actually interested in (and could possibly gain admission to), it appeared more of a bother to my parents.  A let down.  I’ve often felt that no matter what I accomplish in my life, it will never be the standard that my parents expected of me.  And this feeling is perpetuated when I hear my parents bragging about how proud they are of my brother and his graduating from an expensive name-brand university and his powerful career and the fact that my father is parading him around to his business colleagues because “this kid is going somewhere”.

I’m really hoping that this feeling dissipates over time because it really sucks that I can’t even make it through a family dinner without spending an hour crying in the bathroom over my father criticizing my choice of dinner venues.  Those are some deep-seeded issues.  And I’m sick of feeling this way.

Sunday, July 8, 2012

The Sunday Skinny

I've been a major slacker with my weight loss posts over the last 2 months.  Ok, maybe 3 months.  The good news is that I'm in the same size clothes that I was in during my last post.  The bad news is that the good news is simply miraculous because I've fallen into some old (i.e. horrible) eating habits and my exercise level isn't where it needs to be.  So, I'm getting back on the blogging bandwagon to hopefully give me some accountability.  However, I'm changing things up just a bit.

In an effort to avoid becoming even more obsessive about the number on the scale, I'm taking a break from recording my weight.  I've felt for quite a while that if my clothing size continues to move down, then I'm happy.  I keep reminding myself that last summer, I was wearing a size 20 shorts.  This summer I'm wearing a size 14.  That's fabulous!

So, my goals for this week are:

1. Work out 3 mornings

2. Don't drink more than 2 carbonated drinks

3. Make a conscious effort to eat healthy snacks instead of junk food

Saturday, July 7, 2012

My new hobby is a winner

I've been an absent blogger here lately.  I wish I could say it's because I've been overwhelmingly busy, but that's not the case.  I have been doing stuff, but I'm the type of person that if I don't have a million things on my plate, then my productivity comes to a screeching halt.  I found a couple of summer jobs (thank goodness) and I've tried to keep busy with the kids, but alas, I have spent a LOT of time clearing stuff off the DVR and taking up a new hobby.
My friend Kat's husband is an avid online sweepstakes player.  He enters lots of sweeps and he wins some great prizes.  Inspired by his success, I decided to get my feet wet and see what kind of luck I would have with the world of online sweeps.  My ultimate goal is to win a Disney vacation for my family, so I enter all of those sweeps that I can find, but I'm now entering lots of smaller blog hosted sweeps that offer some great prizes too.  I can't tell you how excited I was when I got an email the day after I started entering sweeps that said I was a winner!
Tara from A Spectacled Owl, was hosting a giveaway of adorable hand made owl items from Sabrina at Daisy Dew and Tutu and the package arrived yesterday!  My many thanks to Tara for hosting the giveaway and to Sabrina for making the most adorable owl items I have ever seen!  My 7 yr old has been wearing the necklace nonstop and she put the keychain on her brand new backpack.  (She's excited about her friends seeing her new bling at school next month!)  My 6 yr old almost cried when I gave her the bow holder and new hairbow.  All of the items are beautifully made!


So, stay tuned to see the news about my other win that I found out about this week.  I'm waiting for the items to be in hand before I blog about them.
Do you enter online sweepstakes?  Have you won any prizes that you were really excited about?

Sunday, June 17, 2012

Happy Father's Day 2012

Every day is a day that I should really take a moment to reflect on just how lucky my girls are to have such a fantastic daddy.  I did a fabulous job picking him, if I do say so myself!

He's not afraid to be silly and loves to make us laugh.

He is a disciplinarian, but fair & compassionate.

He is the best dad that I could possibly hope for my girls!



Happy Father's Day to my honey!

Monday, June 4, 2012

101 Things in 1,001 Days: Update 10

When I started this list in April 2010, I had grand hopes of knocking out this list without much issue. While I'm pleased with the progress that I've made so far this year, I am a little disappointed that I haven't accomplished more of these items yet. However, I have managed to knock off the 2 largest (and most expensive) items, so there's that. My most recent updates are in BLUE.


12. Read 100 books - In April, I read “Mockingjay” & “Fifty Shades of Grey”.  In May, I read “Fifty Shades Darker”, “The Magic Room”,  “Jeneration X”, “Stories I Only Tell My Friends”, & “Confessions of a Scary Mommy”.  (2012 book count - 10; Overall book count - 28)


14. Read all of the Harry Potter books - I have finished books 1 through 4 and am currently reading book 5.

36. Exercise 5 days a week for a month - I did this in April 2012 and feel so much better!

38. Treat myself to a massage after losing 30lbs total - I did this in April 2012!


49. Eat 5 things that I've never tried before - I tried guacamole in October of 2010.  I tried zucchini for the first time in August 2011 and it was ok.  I tried asparagus in February of 2012 and I liken it to eating weeds.  Bleh.  I ate broccoli (raw & cooked) in April 2012.  I like it raw!

50. Go camping - My husband & Girl Scout co-leader talked me into taking my Daisy scouts camping in April 2012 and I’m very surprised to say that I enjoyed it!  This was my first time camping since I was about 12 years old.  Yay, me!

So, I've completed 43 of 101 tasks in 24 months and made progress on another 3 tasks. I'm really trying to make some serious progress this summer, so we'll see how it goes!

Sunday, April 8, 2012

The Sunday Skinny

Happy Easter! I'm hopping with excitement this morning!

First, I need to make an adjustment to my stats this week. Since I'm on the home stretch of my Blue Sky program, I needed to make accountability a little easier for me once my weekly weigh ins with them are done. The weight they started me at was higher than what my Wii showed (plus there was a time discrepancy between the 2). So, it's going to affect my overall loss, but not my weekly loss. This will be much easier to keep up with going forward. Anyway, let's see this week's progress!

Starting Weight: 229.2 lbs
Last Week's Weight: 200.0 lbs
This Week's Weight: 198.6 lbs
+Gain/-Loss This Week: -1.4 lbs
+Gain/-Loss Overall: -30.6 lbs

This was a FANTASTIC week for a few reasons! First, this is the first time in 5 years that I've been under 200 lbs and so help me, I will NEVER see a weight beginning with a 2 ever again! Second, I began a hardcore exercise program this week that is already giving me some confidence back. I work out 5 mornings a week with a program called Scenic City Boot Camp. The 2 owner/trainers are incredibly supportive and give us a different (and very effective) workout every day. I love it and can't wait to see how my body transforms over the coming months! Third, this week marks my goal of losing 1/3 of the total weight that I want to lose with this journey. That's a huge goal for me and I'm so proud of myself! And finally, while seeing a number on the scale is rewarding, there is nothing quite as great as fitting into that next size of jeans. This week marks me saying goodbye to size 16 jeans and hello to size 14!

This week, I'm working starches back into my diet and trying to get a handle on not having them at every meal. I'm planning to work out another 5 days this week and hopefully lose at least 1 lb by next week. I know that with adding starches back in, it's likely going to slow down my loss, but if I can continue to lose 1 lb per week, that's at least progress! As always, thanks for the support!

Monday, April 2, 2012

101 Things in 1,001 Days: Update 9

In April 2010, I came up with a list of 101 things that I want to accomplish in 1,001 days. I’m trying really hard to knock out some things on this list since I only have until the end of this year to wrap it up. My most recent updates are in BLUE.

12. Read 100 books - In January, I read “Room”. In March, I read “The Hunger Games” & “Catching Fire”. (2012 book count - 3; Overall book count - 21)

14. Read all of the Harry Potter books - I have finished books 1 through 4 and am currently reading book 5.

23. Finish the cross stitch piece I started for my wedding - I finished it!!! February 2012

24. Enroll in a pottery class - My high school alma mater started offering fun classes for alums and I signed up to take pottery classes every Thursday in April 2012!

49. Eat 5 things that I've never tried before - I tried guacamole in October of 2010. I tried zucchini for the first time in August 2011 and it was ok. I tried asparagus in February of 2012 and I liken it to eating weeds. Bleh.

79. Get the interview with my grandparents converted to DVD - I finally did this and picked up the DVD’s in January 2012! This means a lot to me because this is the only video that my family has of my grandparents. My grandfather passed away more than a decade ago and I’m glad that I now have something to show my girls what a great person he was.

95. Buy myself a Dooney & Bourke or Coach purse - To reward myself for surviving Week 1 of this new diet, I bought myself a Coach purse that I’ve had my eye on for 2 years!

So, I've completed 41 of 101 tasks in 24 months and made progress on another 3 tasks. I’m 41% complete with the rest of this year to make some serious headway. This year is off to a great start!

Sunday, April 1, 2012

The Sunday Skinny

The past couple of weeks have been crazy busy and I have had so many food challenges, it's been ridiculous. Let's see if my efforts to get back on track are paying off.

Starting Weight: 218.7 lbs
Last Week's Weight: 201.9 lbs
This Week's Weight: 200.0 ls
+Gain/-Loss This Week: -1.9 lbs
+Gain/-Loss Overall: -18.7 lbs

I am in week 8 of my Blue Sky program and in order to hit my goal with that program, I have to lose an average of 4.2 lbs each week. Yeah, that's not gonna happen. So, I'm backing up and revising my goal with the hopes of losing 3.2 lbs each week. I've been working hard on my eating habits again and starting tomorrow, I'll be doing an hour of bootcamp every day. Wahoo! It's going to be tough but I've got such a good start to this journey and I'll be damned if I'm going to throw it away now. I will be thin & in amazing shape by the end of this year!

Sunday, March 18, 2012

The Sunday Skinny

Let's see what the scale has in store today!

Starting Weight: 218.7 lbs
Last Week's Weight: 205.5 lbs
This Week's Weight: 201.9 lbs
+Gain/-Loss This Week: -3.6 lbs
+Gain/-Loss Overall: -16.8 lbs

I had a tough week with food. I wrapped up week 5 of my diet program and I've officially hit the point of hating food. I had days where I didn't get close to my necessary calorie count and exercise definitely wasn't happening this week. I had a few slip ups, but no major upsets.

This week I'm trying to be more diligent about meeting my calorie counts and get in 4 session of exercise. I'm doing The Color Run in Atlanta on April 7th and while I'll definitely not be running it, if I don't pick up the pace, I'm going to have trouble even walking a 5k.

I'm crossing fingers and toes that next week will finally be the week that I get out of the 200's for good!

Sunday, March 11, 2012

The Sunday Skinny

I'm very happy this morning from another great week! Let's see the stats.

Starting Weight: 218.7 lbs
Last Week's Weight: 209.0 lbs
This Week's Weight: 205.5 lbs
+Gain/-Loss This Week: -3.5 lbs
+Gain/-Loss Overall: -13.2 lbs

I wrapped up Week 4 of my Blue Sky plan this week and I finally feel like I'm hitting my stride with it. It doesn't feel like a full time job to follow anymore, which is a relief. It's becoming easier to plan my meals and I don't turn to panic mode whenever a curve ball is thrown my way. Yay!

My exercise slowed down a bit this week, but I need to ramp things back up because I'm still planning to do The Color Run on the 31st. 3 weeks!!! However, I'm not running it. I haven't done the proper training for a 5k yet, but Angela & I are going to walk it and have a blast!

At the risk of sounding cliche, I have to admit that I haven't felt this great in YEARS. I have infinitely more energy, no more headaches and despite the fact that I'm not sleeping as much, I don't feel tired all of the time.

Although I can't see the results in my clothes or in the mirror yet, I know it's happening because people tell me all of the time that they can see it in my face already. Plus, at my Week 4 appointment, they re-measured me and in 4 weeks I've lost 2.5" off my waist and 1.5" off my hips. Progress is good!

As always, thank you all for the support!

Sunday, March 4, 2012

The Sunday Skinny

I'm on cloud 9 this morning! Let's see why!

Starting Weight: 218.7 lbs
Last Week's Weight: 213.8 lbs
This Week's Weight: 209.0 lbs
+Gain/-Loss This Week: -4.9 lbs
+Gain/-Loss Overall: -9.7 lbs

Wow, I'm so pleased with this week's number! I have to thank you guys for all of the positive encouragement from last week's depressing rant. I was in a bad place and you guys really made me feel better.

This week was good for a lot of reasons. I've officially finished 3 weeks on the Blue Sky program, which means I'm 25% of the way done. I love number markers! I'm finally feeling like I've found my groove. I actually look forward to having veggies with my meals and I don't miss the bread at all. The sweets are still a little bit of a challenge, but I'm dealing.

Speaking of sweets, I have to confess that I broke down and ate a brownie yesterday. I had baked them with my kids on Friday (for Dr. Seuss's bday) and in a moment of weakness yesterday, I ate one. And I don't feel guilty about it. I have worked my ass off for weeks now, being strictly disciplined about every morsel that I eat and I feel like if I want to have a little splurge periodically, well, it's not the end of the world. However, I was less than thrilled that after I enjoyed that delicious brownie, that I proceeded to have a headache for the next 2 hours. Lesson learned. Smaller portion next time? Lol.

I have ramped up my workouts, working out 4 times this week, which is great! My Wii hasn't seen this much action since we got the thing, 3 years ago. Hubby & I volunteered to coach our oldest's soccer team this Spring, which should be interesting. Thankfully, hubby is the one with all of the athletic skill. I'm more of a team manager and moral support cheerleader. However, he assures me that I won't get away with not participating on the field. We'll see.

This week my goals are to get in another 4 workouts and to try 1 new recipe.

Thanks again for all of the support!

Sunday, February 26, 2012

The Sunday Skinny

This was a really tough week. Let's see the results.

Starting Weight: 218.7 lbs
Last Week's Weight: 215.0 lbs
This Week's Weight: 213.8 lbs
+Gain/-Loss This Week: -1.2 lbs
+Gain/-Loss Overall: -4.9 lbs

I had a lot of really low point mood swings this past week. It pains me that I'm crying over food, but honestly, it's not really the lack of food that's so upsetting I guess. I'm having a really hard time dealing with the fact that I've gotten myself into this situation and it's my own fault that I'm now having to take such drastic measures to get where I need to be. The fact that it's so slow going is also very frustrating. I know that I didn't put all of this weight on overnight, but I'm so driven to get this weight off now, that it's just not coming off as fast as I would like. I'll accept it sooner or later...I just hope it's sooner.

This weekend was super tough because I went on a scrapbooking retreat where all of the meals were prepared for me and I had no idea ahead of time what would be served. Dinner Friday went fine and I sailed through breakfast & lunch yesterday, but that's when the ship started to sink. For dinner last night, every single thing served was loaded with carbs and definitely NOT on my approved food list. I could either suck it up and eat a little of the contraband or go hungry and this girl doesn't just go hungry. Within 20 minutes of eating the stuff, I had such horrible guilt that I nearly made myself vomit. Horrible. And then this morning, they served hash brown potato casserole and quiche, which are also 2 no-no's. I managed to scrape the crust off the quiche and pray that the small slice I ate wasn't too bad on my diet.

So, let's move on from my depressing rant. I'm now feeling more motivated to start exercising, which is great. Guilt can be a handy tool sometimes! My goal is to get in 4 workouts this week and to stick really close to my diet. I know that falling of the wagon this weekend isn't the end of the world, but I'm so paranoid about falling into those old habits. Thanks for the support!

Monday, February 20, 2012

Goin' to the Chapel

Way back in 1996, I was in wedding planning mode BIG TIME. I was also into cross stitching BIG TIME. I had this grand plan to cross stitch a picture of the chapel where hubby & I were going to be married. Here is the chapel. Isn't it pretty?

Well, things got really hectic and even though I started the project, it ended up in a box with a plethora of other projects that I started and just didn't manage to finish. I've picked up the project every now & then over the years but still couldn't manage to finish it.

And so, 16 years, 2 house moves, 2 kids and many life experiences later, I am now extremely proud to say that I can finally mark this project COMPLETE!

Off to the framing shop I go tomorrow!

Sunday, February 19, 2012

The Sunday Skinny


I've been on this new diet for a week now. Let's see some numbers! (And for those following me on Facebook, these are not going to be the same numbers that I posted this week. Those posts are based on my weight at the dr's office. These numbers on my blog are my home weigh in numbers.)

Starting Weight: 218.7 lbs
Last Week's Weight: 220.0 lbs
This Week's Weight: 215.0 lbs
+Gain/-Loss This Week: -5.0 lbs
+Gain/-Loss Overall: -3.7 lbs

PROGRESS!!! That first week on the diet was brutal. I cried and had fits and mood swings and was in just a generally horrible mood for 7 days. Phew, glad that's over.

This week, I am bumped up to a 600-800 calorie/40g of carbs per day diet and I'm supposed to implement exercise. I'm a little lacking on the exercise part, but the diet is going well. I was able to bring a serving a fruit back in and vegetables on on the menu again. Hallelujah!

I know that my loss next week is going to be slight, but if I can keep up a steady minimal loss each week from here on out, I know that I'm moving in the right direction. Thanks for all of the support!

Sunday, February 12, 2012

The Sunday Skinny

Since I'm going with a new posting day, I wanted to come up with a new graphic and so I'm using this one that Shannon & I used last year on our Dieting to Disney blog (which shall become active again!). So, let's see what this week's results are.

Starting Weight: 218.7 lbs
Last Week's Weight: 222.2 lbs
This Week's Weight: 220.0 lbs
+Gain/-Loss This Week: -2.2 lbs
+Gain/-Loss Overall: +1.3 lbs

So, the big news is that I started the new diet regime last Friday and it's going well. Aside from being hungry (because I turned down the appetite suppressant) and having a headache for the last 2 days, I'm feeling pretty good and I'm already seeing results!

I'm limited to 500 calories/day for the first week, so on Friday, I'll be bumped up to something a little more reasonable and I'll be able to start exercising. Color Run, here I come! I'm looking forward to adding some fruits and veggies next week, but I can already see it as a challenge because most of the fruits and veggies that I prefer have a low calorie/high carb count. Grrrr. This week I'm limited to 10 carbs/day but next week it will only bump up to 30/day. It's going to be hard, but I know this is for the greater good!

Thanks for the support!

Tuesday, February 7, 2012

Busy Bees

If you follow me on Facebook, you've probably noticed that when school is in session, my status updates wane. In an interesting turn of events, I've blogged more here in the last month than in did in about 6 months last year. Weird, but I'll take it! Here are a few camera-phone shots of what we've been up to for the last month.

My girls hosted their very first sleepover at our house and it was a success! There are sisters at their school who are the same ages as my girls and have very similar personalities. They all get along like peas & carrots, so we were happy to have them over. The next morning, hubby & I took the girls to Home Depot so they could participate in the kid's clinic. They each built keepsake boxes and had a great time!



I took my girls for a haircut. This doesn't happen too often, so I like to document it. Wow, I've got some gorgeous kids!

I chaperoned a learning expedition for my Kindergartner's class. We went to the Tennessee Aquarium and had so much fun! We're really lucky to have such a great asset in our city and I recommend you guys checking it out if you're ever in the area.


This was just the tip of the iceberg for January! This month is going to pick up even more!

Monday, February 6, 2012

101 Things in 1,001 Days: Update 8

In April 2010, I came up with a list of 101 things that I want to accomplish in 1,001 days. I didn’t accomplish as much as I would’ve liked last month, but February has a ton of potential! My most recent updates are in BLUE.

Home Improvement Goals
1. Decorate my house - This particular goal was pretty broad, so I’m going to own this one by calling it complete as of Dec 2011. I finally managed to decorate my entire house for the holidays and it felt great!
2. Clean desk - I cleaned it in Dec 2010. Now let’s see if I can keep it clean.
3. Keep desk organized for 3 months
4. Finish remodeling the kids bathroom - I think I’m marking this one complete by default. I wrote this with my old house in mind and since that house is under contract with potential new owners, I don’t see us making any additional improvements. At my new house, the kids bathroom is in great shape, thank goodness!
5. Change the living room paint colors and window treatments -Completed in June 2010 at old house
6. Get a window treatment for the kitchen window
7. Create a manageable house cleaning schedule - I accomplished this in April 2011 and had hubby laminate it for me and everything. I should have added that I need to implement the schedule on a regular basis.
8. Have fresh flowers on the kitchen table every week for a month -Completed December 2010 and plan to keep this up because I loved having flowers on the table
9. Decorate inside & out for Christmas - Completed December 2010 and loved every minute of it

Hobby Goals
10. Enter a photography contest
11. Make a quilt
12. Read 100 books - In January, I read “Room”. (2012 book count - 1; Overall book count - 19)
13. Go to a book signing - My BFF Shannon & I went to see our FAVE author, Jen Lancaster at a book signing in Atlanta in May 2011. It was AWESOME!
14. Read all of the Harry Potter books - I have finished books 1 through 4 and am currently reading book 5.
15. Join a book club - I joined an online book club on Goodreads in October 2011, and I am so psyched! I’m starting my 1st book with the club this month.
16. Learn to knit or crochet
17. Knit or crochet a blanket
18. Craft with friends at least once a month - Got together with friends on several occasions to craft but not with consistency each month
19. Finish my Wreck This Journal
20. Learn how to use my sewing machine
21. Sew a dress for each of my children
22. Learn a new language
23. Finish the cross stitch piece I started for my wedding
24. Enroll in a pottery class
25. Print my blog in book form - After pricing this project out, I discovered that printing a year of entries at a time was my best bet. So, I've obtained the book form of 2011 and am working my way backwards. I should have the beginning (2008) through 2011 by the end of the year!
26. Enroll in a cake decorating class
27. Take a photography class & learn how to use my camera
28. Blog twice a week - I managed to blog twice a week for the entire month of January 2012. Yay! I’m trying to keep up this pace, which is definitely manageable.
29. Cross stitch the Rainbow Bridge poem
30. Finish a heritage scrapbook for my mom
31. Finish a heritage scrapbook for my dad

Health & Exercise Goals
32. Get a massage - Completed August 2010
33. Stop biting my fingernails - Completed August 2010
34. Take a cooking class
35. Start a skincare routine - Completed August 2010 (but need to do a better job of keeping up with it regularly)
36. Exercise 5 days a week for a month
37. Run a 5k
38. Treat myself to a massage after losing 30lbs total
39. Treat myself to a massage after losing 60lbs total
40. Enjoy a new wardrobe after meeting my weight loss goal
41. Donate all of my old clothes after meeting my weight loss goal
42. Get down to 120lbs
43. Maintain my goal weight of 120lbs for at least 3 months
44. Go on a horseback ride that involves galloping
45. Take my dog to the dog park once a week
46. Take my dog on a walk twice a week
47. Play in a disc golf tournament
48. Go 7 days without eating junk food snacks - Completed September 2010
49. Eat 5 things that I've never tried before - I tried zucchini for the first time in August 2011 and it was ok.

Outdoors Goals
50. Go camping
51. Grow an herb garden - Bought an herb garden in May 2010 and managed not to kill it for a month which is progress. Plan to actually plant an herb garden at our new house eventually.
52. Start a compost pile in the backyard
53. Landscape my front yard - Completed in June 2010 at old house
54. Build a flower box & plant flowers in it

Personal Goals
55. Get a tattoo
56. Get a professional bra fitting
57. Get my passport
58. Volunteer at an animal shelter - I took my Daisy Girl Scout troop to a local animal shelter in October 2011 and we made food toys for the cats and dogs. It was awesome!
59. Become a published author - I’m totally claiming a win here since I printed my blog in book form and it’s professionally bound and pretty with a dedication page and table of contents and the whole nine yards. That’s not too much of a stretch, right?!
60. Throw a dinner party - Completed November 2010 when we hosted Thanksgiving here for some wonderful friends who are like family
61. Watch Gone with the Wind
62. See Josh Groban in concert - Completed in June 2011 and he was GREAT!
63. Start a review blog - Completed in April 2010
64. Take singing lessons
65. Move to a bigger house - Completed in July 2010
66. Finish my will
67. Inspire someone else to make their own list - Completed in April 2010
68. Learn to drive a stick shift
69. Go whale watching
70. Ride in a limo
71. Go to see 2 concerts - Went to see Kings of Leon with my BFF Shannon in November 2010 and August 2011; Went to see Bon Jovi with my friend Valerie in May 2011
72. Volunteer in my community - I have been volunteering a TON with my kids school, so I totally think this counts.
73. Stay organized for 3 months
74. Watch a movie at a drive-in theater
75. Buy a pair of boots
76. Learn to wear/walk in heels
77. Buy a watch & actually wear it - I bought a cheap watch at Target, in June 2011, and I’ve been wearing it pretty faithfully. So much so that it’s almost on it’s last leg. I think it might be time to fix my nice watch.
78. Go to Disney World with my hubby & kids
79. Get the interview with my grandparents converted to DVD - I finally did this and picked up the DVD’s in January 2012! This means a lot to me because this is the only video that my family has of my grandparents. My grandfather passed away more than a decade ago and I’m glad that I now have something to show my girls what a great person he was.
80. Book a trip to London
81. Assist in growing our Kindermusik program by 100% - I helped accomplish growing our program significantly before I left in August 2011. It was a tough decision to leave, but the best for me & my family.
82. Apply to be on the Amazing Race
83. Play my own lottery numbers - Completed in May 2010
84. But a ticket for a dream home giveaway
85. Sing karaoke at a bar/club
86. Use my bread maker
87. Send my grandma a card once a week
88. Be debt free (except for the house)
89. Apply for membership with the DAR
90. Own a minivan - I am the proud owner of a Toyota Sienna as of August 2011!!
91. Dye a blue streak in my hair
92. Go 3 days without getting online - Completed in July 2010
93. Go an entire day without watching tv - Completed in July 2010
94. Have a professional photo shoot done of just me
95. Buy myself a Dooney & Bourke or Coach purse
96. Go on a horse drawn carriage ride with my family - We took a carriage ride together in Charleston, SC in July 2011.
97. Play miniature golf - Completed in November 2010 when hubby & I played the new "Glow Golf" course in town and had a blast
98. Take dinner to a friend - Completed in May 2010
99. Give a compliment to a complete stranger - I told the drive-thru barista at Starbucks that his glasses looked nice, in November 2011.
100. Save all of my coin change for 3 months & deposit it into my kids savings accounts
101. Write a new list of 101 things in 1,001 days at the end of this project

So, I've completed 38 of 101 tasks in 22 months and made progress on another 3 tasks. I’m pleased with my progress so far and have the rest of this year to make some serious headway. This year is off to a great start!
 

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