Monday, September 30, 2019

Meal Planning Monday, September 30th

Happy Monday friends!  I hope that everyone had a great weekend!  We had some homecoming preparations for our daughter.  What are you having for your meals this week?  Last week was yet another stressful week, which made for a not so great food week.  Meals didn't get cooked as quickly as I would have liked and wound up being different than I planned, but it's okay.  I'm feeling a little more "head in the game" this week.  

Breakfasts this week:  Pancake bake for my daughter and probably a breakfast casserole or eggs for me.

Lunches: For my daughter, Lazy Man Lasagna (meatless) and sandwiches.

For the rest of us: salad, sandwiches and hamburger Philly Cheesesteak over cabbage

Dinners:  a Mexican casserole that I haven't made up yet. 
Fish and veggies
Kunk Poa Tempura Cauliflower with rice
Fettuccine Alfredo (I'll probably use the spaghetti squash I just cooked)
Sandwich night

Last week, we wound up at The Ultimate Willy Wonka party, which was awesome!  The week before it was Downton Abbey.  With the stress of being end of the month and being a person short, we worked some overtime just to make sure we didn't want to run screaming from the building.  I think this week will definitely be better! 

We had frozen pizza, a snacky dinner (I literally had 3 cheesesticks my husband made in the air fryer for me), Subway sandwiches, so not the best food choices.  I was craving sweets a lot and drank 2 Dr Peppers this week.  Well, I don't think I drank the full 12 oz can of either, but it is still more than I have been drinking.  Water is definitely key this week.  My body was feeling dehydrated.  

Things I'm proud of, I walked a lot more than I have been.  I actually was doing some 10 minute walking videos or setting the timer on my FitBit so that I would move for 10 minutes straight.  What are you proud of this week? 

Friday, September 27, 2019

Focus Friday, September 27th

Happy Friday friends!  Finally, this has been a long and stressful week, but it's going to have a great ending!  My sweet husband is taking me to the Ultimate Willy Wonka party.  I am so excited!  Okay, seriously, this has been a ROUGH week.  With the end of the month and being down a person, it's made for a difficult week.  It hasn't been the best food week but whatever the scale says, it says and I just have to move forward.  I did listen to an interesting book this yesterday.  It's called Own Your Everyday by Jordan Lee Dooley.  She shares a declaration that I will share at the end of this blog.  She talks about being present.

I found myself really hungry this week so next week, I need to focus on being more prepared with my food and snacks so that I know I have things I can eat.  Goals also include getting to the Rec Center this week so I can get some workouts in.  

1. Water intake of at least 90 oz. per day.
2. Track, track, track!  
3. Take care of myself.  By this, I mean, I will take time to sit in a sauna, take an Epsom salt bath, get a massage, and things like this. 

I've been binge watching crafting videos, specifically Dollar Tree DIYs, on YouTube.  I am really enjoying getting back into crafting though.  It really gives my mind a break and I think I enjoy it more than I realized.  My Mom and I used to do crafts together so it's bringing back some good memories.  I'm excited to see what next week brings.  Being prepared will definitely be a big part of it.  I think me focusing on carbs and double tracking was causing me to get a bit overwhelmed.  I'll still focus on some lower carb options, but I won't be double tracking right now.

Now for the Declaration that was shared in the book:

I might not be where I want to be, but I am where I am supposed to be. My circumstances don't define me.  I'll press on past the pressure to prove because God made me on purpose for a purpose.  I choose to see people.  I'll share my story even before the happy ending.  I'll my my gifts away instead of just looking for my gifts.  Instead of avoiding failure, I'll bravely step into the fun of the adventure.  I'll be the culture changer instead of being changed by the culture.  I'll celebrate the beauty of this season and the challenges that come with the change.  I'll embrace the waiting and in the middle of it, I'll love people with the heart of intentional purpose.

I will definitely be writing this down in several places where I can easily see it as a reminder that I'm not perfect, but also, I don't want to be.

Thursday, September 26, 2019

Thrifty Thursday Crafts, September 26th

Happy Thursday a/k/a Friday eve!  Fall is here, even though it doesn't really feel like it in our neck of the woods.  The crafting bug hit me!  I offered to host Thanksgiving for my family at our house and it suddenly hit me that I needed to decorate for fall.  I used to enjoy working on some random crafting project with my Mom or playing games, but I told my husband, I think my mind just needs that down time so that I am forced to focus on something different.  I don't know about you, but I struggle with shutting down for a bit and getting overwhelmed with what I have going on.  For less than $20.00, I made this cute little flower arrangement from things that I bought from the Dollar Tree.  It is currently sitting on our front porch.  I'll be adding some additional items to my decor, but seriously I'm loving being creative!  The smaller scarecrows came in a 2-pack, but if my estimate is correct, I spent less than $15.00, tax included on this project.  I think I may try a wreath next! 

Wednesday, September 25, 2019

What's Cookin Wednesday, September 25th

Happy Wednesday a/k/a Hump Day!  Hope you are having a good week!  I decided to do something different this week.  Since fall is technically upon us and I wanted to prepare something different for my daughter for her lunches.  I used this recipe for Vegetable Lo Mein.  I left out the broccoli and the mushrooms.  I used whole wheat spaghetti noodles since that's what I had on hand.  My daughter enjoyed it, but said she wanted more sauce.  I'll keep tweaking it, I suspect, until I come up with the perfect mix for her.  

I am looking forward to Texas weather cooling down!  

Monday, September 23, 2019

Meal Planning Monday, September 23rd

Happy Monday, friends!  Where have I been?  It was a rough week and I just never found the time to sit down.  For those of you that know me, I am not a big fan of change.  We had a big change at our office because one of my co-workers left our office for another opportunity.  I wish her well in her new venture.  Time was limited to meal prep for this week, but I really needed to be "on" this week like I was a couple of weeks ago.

Chocolate Chip Pancake Bake 
Breakfast Casserole.


Hamburger Philly Cheesesteak on cabbage
Spaghetti Squash and chicken meatballs
Veggie Lo Mein Noodles


Kung Poa Tempura Cauliflower
Fried Rice
Salad Night

Hopefully we will enjoy the Philly Cheesesteak over the cabbage.  I'm trying to keep it lower carb where I can, but I've decided for right now not to focus so much on that after my really off week.

I've got ideas in my head for our meals on the weekend or for lunches for the following week.  Hopefully this means I'm getting back in my mindset of meal prepping myself to success.  Have you meal prepped for success this week?  Any great dinner ideas to share? 

Thursday, September 12, 2019

Thursday Thoughts, September 12th

Happy Thursday a/k/a Friday eve!  How's your week going so far?  I want to take a moment and talk about something posted on Facebook where people have made rude comments.  Here's the thing, purely my opinion, but I think that many people are getting more rude and not thinking about how it may cause others to feel because they are hiding behind their screens.  Here's my two cents or what it's worth, just be kind.  You don't know what others may be going through.  One smile from you may change the way their day is going.  One "good morning, how are you?" even if you don't really want to know.  Even if you do not agree with someone, there is no point in being rude to them.  We are all human and we all need a little grace sometimes.  We are not perfect and we each fall short from time to time.  I guess my Mom telling me for so long to "do unto others as you would have them do unto you" just stuck and I try hard to be courteous to wait staff/fast food window or order people, to the homeless when I encounter them.  But for the grace of God and my family years ago, that could be me.  I may not be able to give them anything, but I can be kind or I can even say a silent prayer for them in my car.  

Here's my point, in case you missed it, BE KIND!  It doesn't cost you anything to smile at someone.  Smiling crosses language barriers.  

I know this was short and probably most of the people reading my blog don't need this reminder, but share with your kids, perhaps a co-worker needs a little grace.  It only takes a moment.  Have a great day!

Wednesday, September 11, 2019

What's Cooking Wednesday, September 12th

Well, hello, and happy Wednesday a/k/a Hump day!  This has been a busy weekend and a weekend of trying new things.  As I may have mentioned, I am trying to focus on some lower carb options.  I found a recipe for cauliflower hash browns and decided I would try to make them as an additional to breakfast casserole.  Unfortunately I didn't have 2 packages of cauliflower rice so I decided to halve the recipe.  

Here's what I did:  

I used my one smaller package of cauliflower rice (10 oz. package), 1 cup of the Simple Truth Organic Cheddar and 1 egg and I added some salt, pepper and garlic powder.  

They were a little more eggy than I would have preferred but I didn't have the same amount of cauliflower that she had.  They are really tasty and made a good addition to my breakfast casserole.  I'm looking forward to having them this week.  Did you try any new recipes this week?  Maybe any of the recipes I've shared?  I'd love to hear!  Have a great Wednesday!

Tuesday, September 10, 2019

Pep Talk Tuesday, September 10th

Happy Tuesday friends!  It's time again for Pep Talk Tuesday.  Let's talk for a minute about something we all do...and probably should do more of...sleep.  There are some nights I feel really rested, I get up and feel pretty positive...and then I get to work and start feeling tired.  Let's take a moment and talk about how to set ourselves up for sleep.

1. Build bedtime habits.  Pick a calming activity that you can do every night.  I found a great ten minute Yoga routine that I can do before bed time.  It definitely helps me.  You can also, take a bath or shower, or read a book.  It's harder when you are doing it on an electronic device.  Turn that calming activity into a routine.  

2. Select a cue that triggers you to do the activity.  Set an alarm or use the end of an episode of your favorite show.  Be sure to set the cue at the same time every night so that you are maintaining a consistent schedule.  Start the routine earlier, perhaps 30 minutes, so that you can be prepared when it's time to get some sleep.

3.  Highlight the reward.  You benefit from doing this activity.  You are more relaxed and will likely sleep better.  

Any additional suggestions?  I've also been trying to write in a journal at night as well.  Hope you have a great day!  If you use any of these or have any that you use to share, I'd love to hear them! 

Monday, September 9, 2019

Meal Planning Monday, September 9th

Happy Monday friends!  I hope everyone had a GREAT weekend!  Mine was a bit busy, but it was good.  I got to enjoy some quiet time, but I got some good meal prepping done.  While my weigh in didn't go quite as planned, I am so seriously planning on a GREAT week!   As they say, if you fail to plan, you plan to fail.  

With that being said, I was struggling to eat the breakfast casserole by the end of the week.  This week, I made two different breakfast items to give me some options.  I made a ham, egg and cheese breakfast casserole, some cauliflower "hash browns" and a pancake bake.  I also made a pancake bake for my DD. 

Honestly, because I struggle having the same thing for days on end, (really how do people do that??) I try to make different things that I can have on different days.  As last week was so crazy and I didn't eat everything I prepped, I still have some leftovers for this week.  So I will use that up and then I am thinking I will make a philly cheesesteak sort of thing that I can serve over cabbage to make it lower in carb.  

Dinners, as we didn't have every meal we planned last week.  After our Tuesday night at the hospitals and then Thursday's nuclear stress test, it was just a rough week.  

Last week's meals were:

Monday: Fruit Smoothie
Tuesday: Peanut Butter and Cheese Crackers at the hospital.
Wednesday: Frozen Pizza from Walmart
Thursday: Burritos, I made mine a "burrito bowl" with lettuce and the fixings I put out for the burritos.
Friday: Fish and veggies
Saturday: Burgers, mac and cheese and Ranch Style Beans
Sunday: Fend for yourself

This week: 

Cheesy Cauliflower Rice with broccoli., probably with fish.
Probably the green bean fettuccine with the alfredo sauce later in the week.
One night we will be going out to dinner for my sweet husband's birthday.
We may do a salad night or a sandwich night.

I feel pretty positive about the week and being prepared.  I want to start getting my meal plan in place by Friday, so I can grocery shop and then cook on Saturday.  Goals, right?  It's all about making sure that I can take care of me and my family!  Have a blessed day!

Sunday, September 8, 2019

Simple Sunday, September 8th

Happy Sunday to you!  It's been a minute since I've posted on a Sunday, but I'm trying to get my routines back in order since we ran away on vacation.  Weigh in yesterday was a 1.2 pound gain.  To be honest, I could be really upset by this because I was pretty good most days this week staying within my points and carbs.  However, this week was full of some stressful situations and life.  I am NOT giving up or giving in.  I'm focusing on making the coming week a MUCH better week for me.  I'm meal planning and meal prepping.  I have my calendar out right now so I can put my workouts down on my calendar.  Also, this was the first week of focusing on my WW points AND net carbs.  It's a bit of an adjustment, but I'm gearing up, making plans and making it happen for me.  169 is literally 10 pounds away right now.  

What are you doing to set yourself up for success this week? 

Friday, September 6, 2019

Friday Focus, September 6th

Happy Friday friends!  We've almost made it through another week!  Wow!  For a short week, this has been a crazy week!  Feeling good about taking time to prepare some meals and components were super helpful this week!  Now to figure out what to fix for next week.  I'm thinking a bacon breakfast casserole for next week.  

This week I had a nuclear stress test scheduled for this week.  Initially, I was okay and then, as the time for my test got closer, the anxiety and stress started getting to me.  By the time that I checked in and was heading to the waiting room, I broke down and started tearing up.  I made it through the test and (Thank you, Jesus!) my tests came back normal.  

This is my first week trying to double tracking my Freestyle SmartPoints and my net carbs.  Not everyday has been a win, but like I said to my husband, I am certain that it's better than what it might be if I were not tracking them.

Focus for next week:

1. Water intake of at least 90 oz. per day.
2. Track, track, track!  
3. Cardio, at least 3 days per week, and strength training, even if it's body weight, at least 2 days per week.
4. Take care of myself.  By this, I mean, I will take time to sit in a sauna, take an Epsom salt bath, get a massage, and things like this. 

5. Focus on the lower carb option.  A YouTuber I follow is doing a plan where she's sticking with her points allowance, but also only 33 carbs. 

The water, I think, is what helped me manage to lose last week!  I do still have some things left from this week that I meal prepped so I will try to get creative so that I can use them for lunches or dinners in the coming week.  What are your goals for the coming week?

Thursday, September 5, 2019

Thursday Thoughts, September 5th

Happy Thursday a/k/a Friday eve!  I hope you are having a fantastic short week after the three day weekend.  As I'm going through the week, I realized I didn't share my weight loss this week.  I did not go weigh in the week prior because of the stomach virus and I did document my weight when I went to the doctor's office that Friday.  I was at 179.1 at that time.  This past Saturday, I headed to my weight in location.  Even though my food was not 100%, I am excited to share that I lost another 1.3.  The past week, I tried to focus on getting some steps in and pushing my water.  I think each of these things contributed to my weight loss.  

With the plan this week of 23 Freestyle SmartPoints and limited it to 33 net carbs, I think it will help me to get past this "recycling pounds" roller coaster I've been on.  My goal is to get past 170 sooner rather than later.  Currently my weight is at 177.8 as of this past Saturday, so 8 more pounds and I'll be out of the 170's.  

My Mom has been on my mind a lot lately.  She worked so hard and always found a way for us to enjoy some time, just us.  Sometimes we would make a run to Dallas to a mall or go to play Bingo together.  It was great just to have that time together.  I have some great memories. Hope everyone has a great Thursday!

Wednesday, September 4, 2019

What's Cookin Wednesday, September 2nd

Happy Wednesday a/k/a Hump day!  I honestly don't remember if I have posted this recipe before, but it's basically my Mom's meatloaf recipe that I tweaked.  I have tweaked it for crockpot and now for meatloaf muffins.  I decided that this would be an easier option for me and my family for lunch.  Here's my basic reecipe:

1.25 lbs/20 oz. of Bison
2/3 cup of Panko
1 Egg
1/2 cup of Bell Pepper
1/2 cup of Onion
I opened a 15 oz. can of Tomato Sauce, but it looked like it was too much tomato sauce.

Prehead the oven to 350 degrees.  Mix your ingredients together.  I weighed my mixture and then divided it by 12 since I was making muffins and I wanted them to be pretty much equal.  After putting each one into the muffin tin, I topped with tomato sauce.  Then  I realized I forgot to season it, so I seasoned afterwards.  I cooked the meatloaf for approximately 20 minutes.  They came out looking very tasty.   

I am pairing this with mashed cauliflower for me and my son and my husband is getting mashed potatoes. 

Tuesday, September 3, 2019

Pep Talk Tuesday, September 3rd

Happy Tuesday, friends!  First day back to work today.  Routines are good for me so I think it will be a positive thing for sure.  I feel set up for the week after spending some time meal prepping.  So, let't take a moment and talk a little about setting yourself up for success.  Since I decided to go with Barrett Pastor's plan of 23 Freestyle SmartPoints, but staying with 33 net carbs beginning September 1st.  I didn't really hit the grocery store or was prepared when I got up on Sunday morning.  I winged it, but it was hard.  My breakfast started out with Alpine Valley Sprouted bread and 2 eggs.  It started my carbs off really high.  I decided after church to make sure that I was prepared for the week.  I spent time on Sunday afternoon after church shopping and preparing some of the food.  Yesterday, I did take some time to relax and catch up on some YouTube videos.  Then I got up, I fixed meatloaf muffins and chicken fajitas to set myself up for success.  With this new program, I really need to be prepared or I will not be able to stick with the carbs that I need to.  I talked to my DH, I have a game plan for my workouts AND my meals are prepared.  So, let's talk about how you can set yourself up for success where your food is concerned.

1. Prepare elements that you can put together for a meal.  My options for this week are chicken thighs and chicken breasts and cooked up a pound of Bison.  Why does this matter?  Because I can easily throw some bison into my burritos that I have planned for dinner one day this week.  For the night we're having salads, I can throw some chicken in there to bulk it up.  I also love oven roasting some veggies so that are easy to just warm up and have for dinner.  

2. Stock your pantry/freezer/refrigerator.  Make sure that you have some canned or frozen veggies or fresh or frozen fruit.  So many are zero Freestyle SmartPoints, but ultimately they are just good for you.  Also, the little tuna packets or chicken packets are an easy thing to grab when you are running short on time.  Honestly, if you have it available, you are more likely to use it.

3. Cut your veggies/prepare your fruit and portion it out, if need be.  Again, if you have it available, you are more likely to use it.

4. One of the new things that I'm loving and still need to implement, one of the YouTubers that I follow puts everything together for her dinners for 4 days out of the week.  She doesn't wash it, but will cut up things like broccoli, etc, if she's using that.  That way it's all together and she's not guessing what she planned for dinner or that she didn't have something she was planning on having.  *Side note: I know I've had that happen, what about you?*

What are you going to do to set yourself up for success this week? 

I've already prepared my meals to alternate through the week.  I have a plan in place for my workouts.

Monday, September 2, 2019

Meal Planning Monday, September 2nd

Happy Monday friends!  For my friends in the U.S., Happy Labor Day!  So, on my day off, I'm not really making an effort to "rest", but to use this opportunity to meal prep!  Here's the funny thing, I knew this challenge was coming and I had ideas, but I did not plan beforehand.  I'll be honest, my first day (yesterday), was not great because I felt so out of sorts and it was stressing me out!  So, Sunday, after church, we got ran to the library and I headed off to Marshall's, HomeGoods, Sprouts and Kroger.  I think I went a smidge crazy at Marshall's and HomeGoods, but I got some new placemats and some napkins.  I also went a little crazy with the food finds.  I am excited because AGAIN at HomeGoods, I found some extremely low carb lasagna noodles, which is a little funny because I was just asking what I could use besides zucchini on my FB page.  

I actually came home last night, browned a pound of bison, a pound of sausage for my breakfast casserole, cut bell pepper, wilted some spinach, made my breakfast casserole and cooked up some chicken thighs.

On the agenda today, making some meatloaf muffins and sheetpan chicken fajitas for lunches this week.

Dinners are a bit up in the air, to be honest, but here's my general plan:

Burritos on low carb tortillas.
Green Bean Fettuccine and Alfredo
Fish and veggies
One night, is an unknown.  I have a spaghetti squash I need to use so I may get creative there.  Or it may be a veggie night. 

I'm feeling like I'm going into the week prepared, which is a good feeling.  I will need to focus on what we're going to have next week.  I feel like this is definitely going to help.  Hope everyone has a great day!