5/11/2014

Happy Mother’s Day. I suppose I should make my announcement…

Filed under: Family,Health,Smurfberry,TopPosts @ 8:00 am

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That’s right, there’s a Smurfberry growing in my belly! (That’s the nickname we started using, and it is just too cute.) I know, I’m as surprised as you! I mean, I know I agreed to do this, but I don’t think I actually believed it would happen. I’m still not sure I believe it, but I guess the photo doesn’t lie. Also, it appears this profile that I got from my Daddy which made me be nothing but chin as a child is being passed on to my little one. Sorry in advance, Smurfberry.

I’m finishing up my 12th week right now, so I’m expecting to start feeling a little better soon. Though honestly I can’t really complain. This pregnancy so far has been so much better than I expected (actually, feared) it would be. I haven’t once broken my no puking rule (don’t get me wrong, there were quite a few times I had to convince my body that it really didn’t want to do this). Not sure how I managed that, but I’m so thankful that it has been this way. I only got “evening” sickness, so I was fine to go to work but just felt lousy every evening right after dinner and before bed. I think that might be why it has been easier on me since I could just go to bed and rest when I felt so lousy.

Up until several weeks ago, I felt pretty decent. I had the growing pains in my belly and of course the evening nausea, but I felt calm and alert. Now though I feel tired all the time. I’m constantly out of breath and it feels like it takes a tremendous amount of effort to do the most normal every day tasks. This is especially frustrating since we just moved and I was able to make hundreds of trips up and down the stairs as well as help carry heavy furniture. Now I can barely walk up the stairs without getting winded. I’m looking forward to that getting better in my second trimester.

As for the being hungry all the time rumor, yep that’s true. I thought I’d be fine since being on Jenny Craig taught me to eat 6 small meals a day, but now it feels like I’m eating more like 8. I’m constantly hungry, but I can’t eat too much at a time because everything is squished around. That whole “eating for two” is crap since there’s no way I can eat two portions in one sitting. But about an hour or two later I’ll be hungry again. Thankfully I just got moved at work in my client’s office to my own cubicle and now I’m tucked away instead of in the “bull pen” with 3 other people right next to the break room. I got to hide out in my cube and stuff my face or make “I feel yucky” facial expressions without someone noticing. I still haven’t made an announcement at work, but I need to soon. I’m starting to show.

I recently had to go buy a belly band since my normal pants just stopped buttoning one day. One day I’m fine and what seems like overnight I have a bump and none of my pants fit. Well, I was hoping to use my “fat clothes” from before the weight loss but as it turns out they are just too big. While the pants might fit more comfortably around my waist, they are just way too baggy on me. Same goes for the shirts. They might be more comfortable in the tummy, but are huge in the shoulders. Which makes me feel awesome about my weight loss, but I wanted to be frugal in this pregnancy! So I might have to go maternity clothes shopping sooner than I expected. We’ll see. For now I’m sticking to the belly band with my pre-pregnancy-after-weight-loss pants and my looser tops or those with a built in jacket type thing.

Pretty much right after we found out, I noticed my hair was extra thick and frizzy. For me, that was not a good thing because my hair is already a giant mess, but it turned into a fro mop! I had to go get a keratin treatment to calm it down back to normal. But it feels great now, so it was definitely worth it. I also went back to my dark brown color. Highlights were fun, but they are no longer something I can keep up with.

I’m due mid-November. So I’ll be enjoying a good Thanksgiving sushi fest. I miss sushi so much! I’ve been good about caffeine though. I drink one cup of regular tea in the morning to get me through my drive to work, and I’ve been drinking decaf tea otherwise for flavor mostly. Cause I love my teas. I even found an expectant mothers tea, and it tastes yummy. Since I made a lot of good habits while dieting last year, I feel like the transition to what I can and can’t eat has been pretty easy. The hard part was figuring out what all I can’t have.

I can’t wait to find out cowboy or cowgirl. It makes it so hard to prepare if I can’t really even get an idea of what I’m preparing for. I don’t want to only be buying green and brown and yellow. Hopefully I can find out earlier than what all the baby websites say. I have a coworker who found out at about 14 weeks or so, so maybe at my next appointment I can ask for a blood test.

Anyway this has been and will be an interesting journey and while I’m terrified, I’m starting to get a little more comfortable with the idea. Maybe by the time November rolls around I’ll feel ready.

♥♥ Carrie. Dawn at Momsanity. Debbie Smith. Dee. Miranda. Rebekah. Tanya @ mom's Small Victories. Tara. Victor Goguen

3/22/2014

My weight loss journey … or what I learned from being on Jenny Craig

Filed under: Health,TopPosts @ 7:00 am

I haven’t done a weight loss update in a while, so I thought I’d go ahead and write up a post summarizing everything I’ve learned and my progress to date. As you can see, I’ve lost almost 30 pounds from when I took a good hard look at myself and said enough! I was finally motivated to get healthy, and since I wasn’t really all that great at keeping up on my own, I decided to join Jenny Craig. My  husband was leaving for a military deployment, and I knew I was not going to cook for just myself anyway. So rather than eating TV dinners, I ate Jenny Craig meals. But just eating those meals was not enough – no, you had supplement with lots and lots of fruits and vegetables, and other snacks. It was a struggle for me at first, but after about a month I got the hang of it, and the routine became comfortable for me. I know some people can’t stand eating the same type of food all the time, but it really didn’t bother me. I did have my off days (like book clubs and friend dinners and when I traveled) but for the most part I ate my Jenny meals and saw the results. So here is a list of what I learned, and how I can continue to use what I learned in my life now that I’m off the Jenny Craig diet.

Eat 6 small meals a day. It was hard for me at first, especially with the large breakfast I had to eat (a meal, a milk product, and a fruit  when I was used to only eating a yogurt for breakfast), but it got my day started off right and kicked off my metabolism. And it makes sense. Babies need to be fed every 3 hours, so why not adults? I used to struggle with what I called “hunger headaches” if it had been too long between meals. Well, that completely went away since I was snacking every 3 hours. So I would eat a good size breakfast, then have a mid-morning snack (usually a milk product, OK, usually string cheese!), then I would eat a lunch (with vegetables), then a mid-afternoon snack (usually fruit), then dinner and dessert. YES I got to eat dessert, and let me tell you the Jenny Craig cheesecakes were quite yummy! The best part about eating more often is you don’t overeat. It really helps with portion control. I think this is the most important item that I learned, since I’m continuing to apply it to my current eating habits.

Fruits and vegetables are your friends.  I had to add fruit or vegetables to every meal, and I’ve really gotten into the habit of eating healthier. I’ve become a big fan of zucchini and kale. Now I even bring a salad to work to eat with my sandwich. Clean eating has become a fad nowadays, and I think learning to add fruits and vegetables to my menu is a good step in that direction.

Having someone to talk with really helps. Having to do weekly check ins got *really* annoying after a while, but at the same time, I don’t think I would have been as successful without that. Checking in with someone who won’t judge you but will try to help motivate you really keeps you on track and helps you get through minor setbacks. Staying motivated is not easy, and it is pretty much impossible to make progress without the motivation to keep going. Now I have hubby to help remind me to eat healthy and stay motivated to keep the weight off.

Slow and steady (you know how that saying goes). The safest way to lose weight is slowly, about 1-2 pounds a week. The way to make this happen, and maintain it, is to establish healthy habits that you can keep up with after you go off a specific “diet”. Do what feels right and make small changes in your routine until they work for you. As you look back over time, you’ll see the progress you’ve made.

Move, and keep moving. I’m not big on going to the gym. In fact, I bought a used elliptical machine so I wouldn’t have to go to the gym. But my favorite activities are more social. I love going for a walk and chatting during that time. Before I moved, my neighbor and one of my closest friends would get together on weekends to go for walks around our subdivision. Now that I’ve moved we won’t be able to do that anymore, but I hope to continue going for walks now that hubby is back. I need to get  back into an activity routine when we’re a little more settled into the new house.

Those are the main items, though I’m sure there’s more that I’m forgetting at the moment. I’m not saying this diet plan is for everyone. All I’m saying is this program was right for me at that particular time in my life. I continue to be amazed at the differences I see in myself. I have more energy than I did before, I feel healthier and just better overall.

♥♥ angie. April @ The Steadfast Reader. Brittany. Carrie. Deanna. Dee. Diana. Dionna. Georgia. Tanya @ mom's Small Victories

8/7/2013

Nashville conference, Jenny Craig update, and Space City Con

Filed under: Entertainment,Health,Travel,Work @ 10:17 pm

A few weeks ago I went on a work trip to Nashville for my client. They had their environmental conference there since the Nashville office moved into a new building and wanted to host. So of course every evening we went out and ate and drank and had a good ole time. One restaurant even brought us a free desert tray because we were such a big group. I also enjoyed the live music, because when you go to Nashville, you gotta hear some music! The conference material was pretty interesting but the evenings were even more so. One evening we had a murder mystery dinner. Another evening a few of us went to check out the Cheekwood LIGHT exhibit. It was lovely! Not only are the gardens beautiful, but the light exhibit is so cool! I tried taking pictures with my phone but they kinda suck. I did post them on facebook but the website gives a much better idea of what the exhibit looks like. Check out the gallery. There’s some awesome videos too.

So like I said, we ate a lot and drank a bit too. I mean, upper management was paying for it, so why not have drinks with the boss. I did over-indulge and ended up gaining a few pounds during the week we were there. BUT, the weight melted off during the weekend when I was home and I still had some progress to report at my next weekly consultation! Yay! My metabolism has been recharged so even if I have a “fun” week, I don’t keep the weight on like I used to. Amazing! I’m down about 17 pounds. It is making such a difference. Most of my pants don’t fit anymore so I have to wear a belt heh. I used to have a box of clothes that are too small on me but now I’m making a box for clothes that are too big. I know some people think Jenny Craig or similar diets are not good for you, but it just depends on the person and the timing. Sure, eating fresh prepared meals is better, and I tell you I do get excited to eat fresh food. But, since I’m on my own this year I wouldn’t be cooking for myself anyway. So if I wasn’t eating the Jenny Craig meals, I’d be eating Lean Cuisine or something. So this is working for me because of the timing and my situation. There’s nothing wrong with “volumizing with vegetables”. I eat so much healthier than I used to because I eat a lot more vegetables now. And eating every 3 hours has really changed the amounts I eat at a time, and I think that is what boosted my metabolism. I’m hoping to keep up with this because I like the new me.

Last weekend I went to Houston’s Space City Con. Yes, my second con ever, and second this year. I’m hoping to make San Diego Comic Con someday. I might make it next year, since my high school best friend is getting married the weekend prior to Comic Con in Northern California. So I might as well just stay a little longer and hop on down to San Diego, right? I told my husband that he owes me. *Crossing fingers* that I can make it work out. Anyway, Space City Con was pretty cool too. I got to go to some cool panels, like Houston Harry Potter meetup (which I joined), Houston Browncoats (Firefly – also joined the FB group), watched a Jedi Light Saber demo, and of course saw one of the headliners the Dr. Who Sylvester McCoy panel. He was really funny and really cool. I took some fun pictures of people in costumes. I posted those on facebook too. You might have to be my friend to view them cause of my privacy settings. I took a bunch with my friend and don’t want to post publicly without permision.

Yea I know I haven’t been very good at posting things timely so I end up with one long summary post. I post so much at my book blog that I seem to be neglecting this site. I’ll try to get better at juggling everything.

♥♥ Deanna

4/2/2013

Happy April

Filed under: Entertainment,General,Health @ 12:56 pm

Wow it is April already. And that means my birthday is coming up! April 13th I’ll maybe finally become an adult? Cause I think while you’re in your 20s you can still get away with being young and stuff but once the 30s come, well that doesn’t quite feel so young. As you can see I’m not super excited about leaving the 20s behind, but then again I mourned my teens. So maybe I’ll be OK. In any case I believe you can celebrate your birthday all month long so I hope to have a lot of fun this month :) I’m definitely looking forward to my birthday trip and getting to spend time with my parents. I’m sad that hubby won’t be here for my birthday but that’s the way it goes.

This past weekend was really awesome. Hubby came home for his final pass before the “real” deployment starts and they leave the country. I took a few days off and we had a really nice long weekend just hanging out and spending time together. I shared him once when we had dinner with another couple we are close friends with, but otherwise it was just us. We watched some TV and movies, played some more Lego Harry Potter on the PS3 (we still have part 2 of year 7 to finish when he returns, so we’re almost done with the game but the finish will have to wait), ate out a bit (had sushi twice!) but I still tried to follow my diet plans and still managed to lose a pound this week! It was a really enjoyable and relaxing time and I needed a break from work anyway since I just finished a major project before taking the few days off and it was a bit hectic.

♥♥ Miranda

3/25/2013

Jenny Craig Update – after 3 weeks

Filed under: Health @ 11:30 am

I have been on Jenny Craig for 3 weeks. I’ve basically gotten the hang of the way they want me to eat as well as making adjustments as necessary. For example, on the weekends when I’m basically sleeping through my normal breakfast time, I can combine the mid-morning snack with the lunch meal to get back on a schedule that is easy to follow. Otherwise, I would be eating dinner at like 9pm! So far I have lost about 3 and a half pounds. I notice a lot of fluctuation in my weight during the week, which I find kind of strange at times especially if I don’t have any “my days” with book club pot lucks that week. I guess I can say I’m averaging a pound lost a week, and they say you should lose 1-2 pounds each week so that is normal, but I’m really wanting to maximize that per week. I guess if I do more activities that would help. I did activities this weekend though. Saturday I went for a long walk while carrying heavy objects (at the mall) ha! And Sunday my neighbor and I walked for over an hour. So that’s something. But I do need to start doing more activities during the week. I’m just so tired after a long day. I’m hoping that with my birthday coming up in a couple of weeks I won’t end up gaining a lot of that back. But I will want a slice of cake!

♥♥ Miranda

3/7/2013

Started Jenny Craig

Filed under: Health @ 6:21 pm

I just started Jenny Craig. I decided I can’t seem to get this weight loss thing done on my own so I figured Jenny could help me. My first day was yesterday and the food arrived on Tuesday. I also had my first consultation phone call Tuesday evening. Here are my thoughts so far.

Signing up. The website has a call me back right now feature so you enter your contact information and you get a call back right away while someone connects you with another someone who will actually be signing you up. What I found a bit annoying is person 1 either did not send or did not have the ability to send person 2 my contact information so I had to provide it multiple times. I also didn’t like having to spell everything over the phone. It would have been much easier to fill out a contact details form online and then have the representative be able to access that info during the call. I was able to select my food over the phone by looking at their menu and picking based on the photos. It was basically me listing off the names of the foods that looked appealing as I moved down the list. Again this might have been automated better but whatever. They had a promotion of 30 days free just pay the cost of food, and then you can renew with whatever plan is available at that time. I paid over the phone and a month worth of food came to just under $600. This includes breakfast, lunch, dinner, and a snack per day.

Welcome phone consultation. On Tuesday a huge box was waiting for me when I got home. Some of the items I ordered could be kept in the pantry so they were in a separate box and below that box was a large cooler with all the frozen items. The boxes are about the same size, maybe a bit smaller than the lean cuisine boxes I’ve been eating. The mailing also contained a welcome packet with a booklet and a week 1 menu. When I got the call from my consultation person I expected a lot of information and step by step details. The call lasted maybe 20 minutes. She basically gave me a brief overview and told me to put together my week 1 menu right away and then check off things as I eat them or make notes of what I changed during the course of that week. She told me to add vegetables and salad with lunch and dinner and a fruit and milk product with breakfast. She also said eat another milk product as a mid-morning snack, a fruit as a mid-afternoon snack and then a dessert as a mid-evening snack. Basically they are having me eat every 2.5-3 hours to keep my metabolism high. I asked about off days when I know I have book club or lunch plans with a friend and she said I can either eat before I go and just go for the social aspect and not eat during the event, or I can eat mostly vegetables or salad and have a small serving of meat and starch. That was kind of an expected answer – don’t eat good stuffs when you go out. Guess I have to bring vegetables as my book club potlucks. No more pasta salads or casseroles lol. Then she sent me an email with some links and her contact information if I have any questions during the week until my next consultation the following Tuesday. I expected a lot more hand holding and I actually expected them to help me make my week 1 menu to get me to understand what I was to do. I kinda felt overwhelmed at first. Especially since their menu has blanks where you can put in what food item you are eating, and then the other additives are written in for you. It wanted me to eat a salad with my lunch, but I don’t want to have to carry salad makings with me to work so I switched it to having a salad with my dinner like I have been doing and then just eating vegetables with my lunch. That overwhelmed me a bit at first because being Tuesday and not a weekend I didn’t have the time to go grocery shopping. So I found some canned vegetables and canned fruit in my pantry and I plan to eat those until the weekend comes when I can go to the store. I also am allowed extras in the form of unlimited items such as vegetables and sugar-free drinks and sweets and limited items (up to 3) of fruits, condiments, hard candy, etc.

Day 1. Breakfast was crazy for me because I’m not used to eating much in the morning. And it didn’t help that I had to get up an hour earlier for a meeting at work that was earlier than I usually get there. So I was eating breakfast much earlier than I’m used to, and I ate so much more than I am used to. I had one of their sunrise sandwiches, a cup of milk, and some canned fruit. I was so full. I couldn’t take a deep breath. And I skipped my mid-morning snack because I just couldn’t bear to eat anything until lunch time. The rest of the day went better. The lunch meal I ate was Swedish meatballs with some canned vegetables. I also had some jolly ranchers cause the food left a weird taste in my mouth. Then I had an apple for a mid-afternoon snack like I always do. Then for dinner I had the cheese ravioli meal and a salad. For the last snack I had their cookie. The cookie’s taste was kind of disappointing but still a cookie is a cookie and it had chocolate. I did have a headache by the end of the day and had to take some medication. I think it is from the food changes, and I’m sure they put something in their food to keep you full from the smaller portions.

Day 2. When I weighed myself this morning I had lost 2 pounds! It is kinda strange that I lost 2 pounds in one day, especially when I didn’t feel hungry during the day. But if this is what I can expect I’m all in. Today went better with breakfast and other foods. I didn’t have such a hard time with eating as much during my normal breakfast time, and I found that eating a yogurt was less filling than drinking milk. It was weird to eat two yogurts today though (the second yogurt was my mid-morning milk product snack). I’m allowed to substitute a string cheese for the milk product so I’m excited to buy some this weekend. Yay string cheese! I haven’t had my dinner yet and I don’t know if I’ll end up with a headache by the end of the day toady but so far I haven’t felt super hungry, just normal hungry when it was time to eat again, and hopefully I can stick with it this month and see what results I get.

♥♥ Angela. Deanna. Miranda. Verdee

2/2/2012

My Fitness Pal

Filed under: Health @ 9:18 am

So a couple of weeks ago I bought an elliptical machine off someone on craigslist. I’ve been using it almost daily and it is a really good workout. I got a high quality one. I’ve also been tracking what I eat again using MyFitnessPal. I started using it last fall after I quit weight watchers (cause I didn’t want to continue paying for it) and I decided to start using it again since I’m back on the wagon or whatever. Here’s my little ticker that shows my progress. To date I lost 3 pounds already and I just started like two weeks ago :)

Created by MyFitnessPal – Free Calorie Counter

♥♥ Angelica. Jenni. Jess Haight. Massa P

8/7/2011

Yoga

Filed under: Entertainment,Health @ 5:56 pm

A neighbor of mine has been doing yoga and convinced me to try it out with her. We went yesterday (Saturday) at noon to a beginning yoga class at Joy Yoga studios in Houston. It turned out to be a very intense class and later my neighbor told me it was nothing like a beginning class. So I survived a class that was taught more like an all-levels class. I took the easier modifications or didn’t do some of the poses if they were too hard, and I made sure to be gentle on my poor feet. It was definitely a work out and I was sore and sweaty after the class. On our way home we stopped by My Fit Foods to get a healthy lunch. I felt really good after, I mean really relaxed, and ended up taking a long nap. We decided to go again today (Sunday). Turns out since she referred me I get my first week free, so we took advantage of it and I got two free sessions. I won’t be going during the week since I won’t go alone and she gets off work at 4 while I get off at 5:30, so we wouldn’t be able to go on the same schedule. Today’s class was called Gentle Yoga. It was quite nice and I really liked this instructor. I can really tell I got a work out this weekend cause my legs and shoulders are so sore. Hopefully this will help get me active, since I’ve been so lazy.

♥♥ Angela. Joana. Laurie. vvb

8/3/2011

Yesterday thought it was a Monday of Mondays but it was wrong

Filed under: General,Health @ 12:11 pm

Yesterday was not a happy day. We started off the day with a dental appointment for both me and hubby at 9 am. It was supposed to be a routine check up and cleaning. Well they found 3 cavities under my existing fillings! So I guess my childhood dentist sucked and didn’t do a good job so the fillings started to leak. Also, they think I grind my teeth at night (and suspect hubby might too) so we both got fitted for night guards. Awesome. So I had all 3 cavities filled yesterday, followed by a cleaning, and didn’t get out of there till 1 pm! I was so hungry but couldn’t eat until a half hour after my cleaning was done so I attacked my lunch when I finally got to work. Except it really hurt to eat. Not only were my teeth sensitive from the cleaning, my jaw was also in a lot of pain from having to hold my mouth open all that time. I took an Excedrin but it didn’t help.

Then when I got to work my computer had restarted and I lost all the windows and files I had opened but not saved to my desktop for reference (since I didn’t expect they would close) at the end of the day yesterday. So I had to start over and find things. Then the network was giving everyone trouble and my folders kept shutting down and files I had open on the network kept freezing. I finally gave up and copied what I was working on to my desktop to keep that from happening.

Finally, driving home my power adapter mp3 player that broadcasts over my speakers disintegrated. Yes, I plugged it in, and it didn’t work, so I pushed it in farther cause sometimes it doesn’t make contact quite right, and it exploded in my hands into little pieces of dead electronics. So I had to drive home in traffic without being able to listen to my audio books that make traffic bearable. And yes, radio sucks. Also, my power adapter stopped working when the mp3 player broke (I plugged in my cellphone charger to test it), I had hubby take a look at the power adapter when I got home and turned out it blew a fuse, probably when the mp3 player went POOF. So he replaced the fuse and at least that’s fixed.

Yea, so the day thought it was a Monday of Mondays but it was actually a Tuesday and a really bad one.

♥♥ Angela. Laurie

3/6/2011

Update on Contacts

Filed under: Health @ 10:48 am

Well, I’m now in my 3rd pair of contacts and still trying to figure out what works right. At distances, they are fantastic, but I’ve been having trouble seeing at my computer. Why is my screen blurry? My glasses never make my computer screen blurry, so why do the contacts correct at this distance? I guess this is something special to do with contacts. The doctor said some people see better in glasses than in contacts, and they do not work well for everyone. But I plan on trying all the different types before completing writing them off as an option. This third pair is slightly more expensive, but the computer screen looks better than in the previous ones I’ve tried. So maybe there’s hope yet.

♥♥ Amber@ AwesomeSauce

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