Tuesday, January 3, 2017

Back to Work ~ Tuesday 1/3/17

Today was Back to Work Day for Greg :(  He was up at the crack of dawn (well, not really, he was up at 6:45 a.m.!) and I got up too, as hard as it was because I didn't get to bed until 1 a.m. I was working on redoing my 2017 spreadsheets. I had been so ahead of the game, I thought, because I had prepped them a few weeks ago, but then I made formatting changes to my 2016 spreadsheets when I recapped the year, so I needed to do the same changes on the 2017 spreadsheets. I'm no Excel expert so I'm probably doing things the hard way, but what are you gonna do?  I still have more work to do on those today.

When I went to bed, Explorer and Princess (aka "the twins") had already fallen asleep so they didn't come up with me.  Eventually Explorer did come sleep with me, but Princess spent the whole night downstairs by herself (with the big cats!) and so she was a little spooked when we came down this morning!  Silly girl.  I have got to go to bed early tonight because it's still too dark in the morning and I'm thinking I might drive my son to school.

I just took a moment to think of what my priorities should be for today. I didn't look at my list of goals, just jotted down what my gut tells me I should do today so my list is short on purpose.  I will hopefully have more accomplishments than that to report, but those are the things I'd really like to have completed by the end of the day.

I did hear back from my Marseille brother, finally!  I had been worried since there hadn't been any news since before Christmas, not even a "Merry Christmas" email. But he said everything was fine, I guess he didn't feel like being very social either, I can't blame him!  He hasn't talked to our dad but surmises that the big online romance with the "very pretty woman from Paris with the nice rack and is younger than us but who is very into him" didn't amount to anything after all as the message all my dad's contacts received was about mourning the anniversary of the death of our stepmom, which is tomorrow.  It's hard to believe that she's been gone 3 years already :(


  • Drink 2 cups of water before drinking finishing my coffee!  DONE
  • Take Youngest Son to get a haircut DONE
  • Possibly do the Publix shopping during that time (if I've done the next 3 tasks first!) DONE
  • Clean coupon organizer DONE
  • File new coupons Partly done
  • Work on my grocery shopping list DONE
  • Wash comforter on futon
  • Put new cover on
  • Vacuum - I swept 3 rooms
  • Fold the laundry
  • Finalize worksheets for 2017
  • Schedule recurring transfer to savings DONE
  • Exercise BIKED FOR 33 minutes
  • Do heel stretching exercises 3 times - 2 X only
  • Firm up plans with BFF - DONE
  • Make plans with other friend  DONE
  • Water the daffodil bulbs and pole beans - HOLDING OFF, it looks like it might rain. IT RAINED at 8:45 p.m.

  • I packed leftovers for Greg to take to work.

  • I opened the windows to air out the house. It's warm and humid, though, so I think I'll have to close them soon, to the cats' dismay!

  • I used up another brown banana in my morning cereal.

  • I put all the old buns/rolls in the dehydrator to eventually turn them into bread crumbs.

  • I used some of the freezer containers I had bought at Aldi several months ago to freeze the last portion of meatloaf, as well as the wedge of Mango Ginger White Stilton cheese and the three and a half logs of Vanilla Blueberry Goat cheese that had gone uneaten.

  • I saved the bread bag from the hamburger buns to reuse as poop bag when I clean the upstairs litter box. I found a bunch of bread bags that I was saving in one of my drawers yesterday so I took them upstairs to reuse as poop bags as well (I had been using trash bags to bag the litter box contents!)

  • I forgot to note that last night I had reused the water used to rinse the lettuce to water one of my rose bushes.

  • My 1st SB Daily Goal is 60 SB but it is slow going today as the regular nGage videos ran out very quickly and JunGroup wasn't even in the line-up. Thankfully nCrave videos showed up but it's slow going. I'm at only the halfway mark at 9 a.m.

  • I earned the Microsoft Rewards credits for today and was able to redeem my credits for a $5 Amazon gift card :)  Yay!  As usual, it arrived in my email right away and I logged it in my Found Money Tracking spreadsheet for 2017 after I credited it to my Amazon account. I checked my wishlist to see if there was anything that I wanted that was below the total credit that I have on my account, but there isn't so I'll wait.
  • I'm interested in buying a DVD set of the complete series of "King of Queens", but it's still too expensive for me, even used, so I set a couple of alerts on Camel, Camel, Camel, which will email me when the prices for both new and used copies either meet or go below the price point that I set.  

  • I set up an automatic transfer from our checking account to our New Car Savings account, corresponding to Greg's 2016 raise amount, for every pay period until the end of May. He usually gets a tiny raise in June so I will increase the amount saved at that time and reset a new automatic transfer.  I did the transfers manually in 2016 but there is no reason why that couldn't be automated. One fewer thing for me to have to worry about :) I set a reminder in the Google calendar that I keep for Organizational Purposes so that I receive an email at the end of May to remind me to start a new automatic transfer then.

  • I texted Greg to remind him to get IT to switch something rather with the VPN access to his new phone so we can cancel his old line with AT&T. Update: IT never got back to him. Grrr.

  • I checked my passport's expiration date and I still have several years. Yay!

  • I firmed up plans with BFF for Thursday.  She offered to meet at Wawa's or at her house (close to Wawa's) in the morning so I told her I'd meet her at her house and I'm going to bring my home-brewed coffee. She can get her coffee at Wawa with the gift card I gave her for Christmas if she chooses to (I'm not sure if she brews her own coffee at home or not, some BFF I am!). That way I don't spend money for something that I have at home AND I'm not tempted by goodies either.

  • She turned down my offer of the DVD set of 3rd Rock from The Sun since she has Netflix.  I added it to my box of donations to take to the thrift store.

  • I decided to go grocery shopping on Thursday instead of Wednesday and I'll go after meeting with my BFF. She lives in South Clermont so the stores can be on my way home if I come home on US 27.  It'll save me gas.  Now I do need to go to Publix today as I will likely just stay home tomorrow :)

  • I went to take the bread that had been drying out of the dehydrator and made a mess everywhere!  So after processing the bread crumbs in my food processor (I got 3/4 of a container's worth of bread crumbs, woohoo!), I started cleaning...

  • Which led me to reorganize the kitchen's under-the-sink area, which led me to discover some cleaning supplies that I didn't even know I had!  Bonus!  I found:
    • A half-full bottle of B&BW Lemon Kitchen hand soap bottle (now on my sink)
    • a bottle of Jet Dry 
    • a full spray bottle of Parsley Plus counter cleaner, which is my fave, woohoo, plus a bottle of OxyClean kitchen counter too
    • A box of pre-detergent soap washing pads (now on my sink to do dishes by hand when I need to)
    • A box and also leftover rolls of kitchen trash bags

  • While reorganizing that area, I came across 2 Boxtops4Education labels that I clipped and saved for our former elementary school.

  • I also put away the dishes that had been left to dry on the rack on my counter for far too long and I found:
    • the lid and straw for that XL RaceTrac cup, woohoo!
    • several lengths of foil that I had washed so I put them away
    • an old square Rubbermaid container. The lid was broken so I put it away but kept the container to use as a drawer or desktop organizer.

  • I also decided to put the KitchenAid microplane that I had bought at a thriftstore in 2015 in the donation box because I never liked it and it was taking space that I need.

  • I got the shredded Parmesan out of the freezer to use in tonight's lasagna and replaced it with the container of veggie dip that we barely ate at Christmas. I'll look for recipes to use that up. Possible a casserole of some kind? Now I'm thinking that I should have frozen it in small portions to use in such soups that called for heavy cream like butternut squash soup, pumpkin soup... hmmm...

  • I decided to defrost the last bag of pumpkin puree processed in 2015. I'll bake pumpkin bread tomorrow. Relax, Bonnie, I can resist pumpkin bread, actually, even with chocolate chips in it!

  • All this cleaning and reorganizing led me to sweep and dust. While dusting a shelf in the living room, I came across this ridiculous framed mini copy of the Seinfelt Puffy Shirt. It had come with my DVD set. I added it to my donation box. Maybe a collector will want it.

  • I also found 2 boxes of adhesive felt pads that I had bought at the Dollar Tree a couple of months back. Perfect!  I affixed 6 of them to the underside of my KitchenAid Artisan Mini Mixer and now it slides perfectly on my counter top and I won't be wrenching my shoulders anymore! I still had enough pads to put on the feet of the window seat in the living room, which is why I had bought them. I'll ask my son to help me with that this afternoon.

  • In the midst of all that I decided to switch dinner plans between tomorrow (I had planned a crockpot recipe) and Thursday since I'll be home tomorrow but gone all day on Thursday. So I defrosted the chicken breasts that I'll need tomorrow.

  • Lunch was the last bowl of Black Eyed Pea Soup and a sandwich of a FoldIt flatbread (free from Publix) and a 1/4 cup of Cranberry Almond Chicken Salad from Aldi (bought on clearance at $0.99 a container, which will provide many lunches!), with 2 clementines.  The kids will eat chicken nuggets or sandwiches.  They fix their own lunches.

  • I had saved the soup in an upcycled plastic soup container from the Chinese restaurant that I have already reused several times. It will get washed and reused yet again :)

  • I scheduled lunch with my friend (the one who offered me a very part-time job) for next week We'll go to a local sushi place and I've already set a reminder for me to drink water (cheaper and healthier) and order the chicken teriyaki bento box because I think it's probably the healthier option?  We'll eat late so I'll have time to exercise first to earn more calories to eat :)  I'll be asking her about the job then.

  • I reached my 1st SB goal at 12:30 PM.  I probably won't reach my 2nd goal today but I'll keep playing those nCrave videos on Discovery Mode (i.e. automatic, I love that, how did I not know about this before?!) as long as I can.  I'm at 1,232 SB so far so past the halfway mark to a gift card, woohoo!

  • CVS sent me a coupon for 20% off one full-priced item good through tomorrow so I uploaded it to my card even though right now my plan is to NOT go tomorrow :( I wish there was a CVS close to me. Incidentally, there is one on Greg's way home, but I don't think he would ever agree to stop and get me something. Well, he might but then he would "forget".

  • After I typed this, my plan for the day went awry.  My daughter came to talk to me about something (oh, she's able to return her college books and pick up the new ones tomorrow or Thursday, phew!) and so I asked to talk to her about her graduation trip.  I told her that ultimately I would do what she wanted, but explained to her my reservations about going to France this summer and asked whether she would consider going on an American road trip instead, which was another thing we had wanted to do this year. Her reply was a total surprise to me! She said that she wasn't hellbent on going to France, as much as she liked it, because we'd already been once already and she had been wanting to go on an American road trip for a while anyway! So we both agreed it probably was for the best. She got so excited about it that she started planning the trip right away on a site called Roadtrippers!  Meanwhile Youngest Son went to the park to get some swinging done. I mentioned that when he got back, I wanted to take him to GreatClips and that I'd go to Publix while he was getting his haircut.  My daughter said she wanted to come along and asked if we could go to the library so she could check out travel books.

  • But first, I needed to purge my coupon organizer and file my new coupons!  So I did that while she kept finding ideas of where to go.  I decided to only file the food coupons today since I wasn't planning on buying any non-food items today.

  • Once I was done, we went to pick up Youngest Son from the park and drove to Great Clips. I gave him our prepaid card and $2 in cash and since I had checked him in via their app, he didn't have to wait.  The only cost out of pocket today was $2 and the haircut cost us the prepaid price of $9.99 instead of the regular price of $14.

  • Meanwhile my daughter and I walked to Publix, in the same shopping plaza.  I had several coupons for free items and ended up getting all of this for $6.22:
    • 4 cans of Campbell's soup, on BOGO @ $2.39 and I redeemed a coupon for a free can and a $0.45/3 coupon, making 3 of the cans free
    • A package of Dole Mixations fruit cups (free after coupon from Dole)
    • 4 packages of whole bread StoneFire naan bread, on BOGO @ $2.99 and I redeemed 2 BOGO coupons so they were all free.
    • 2 packages of Arnold Sandwich Thins, on BOGO @ $3.99 and I redeemed 2 $0.55/1 coupons (so 1 free)
    • and a package of coffee filters @ $1.29
    • I charged the OOP to Amex for 3% back in Rewards.
    • I had a coupon for a free bag of cat treats up to $1.75 but they were $1.79 so I left them. I'll wait until they're on sale or get them from another store

  • Youngest son met us at Publix and we drove to the library.  As we were driving down an access road by Publix, I spotted an empty 2L bottle of Coke on the side of the road with its cap still on!  To my kids' dismay and horror, I made a U-turn... and asked my daughter to go get the bottle. She didn't want to so I got it myself :) I kept the cap and recycled the bottle at home!

  • We were very disappointed not to find any travel books at all, but our library is tiny so perhaps it wasn't so surprising.  I knew my daughter really wanted to get started on researching the books so I offered for us to go to Clermont.  We dropped Youngest Son and the groceries at home, I grabbed my water and at the last minute, decided to bring my coupon organizer along, just in case.  We drove the Focus to Clermont since the mileage is better and I wanted my daughter to drive because I felt very tired.

  • At the library, we borrowed 5 books to help us plan our trip!

  • My daughter was hungry so she wanted to order something from Panera. I gave her my promotional $10 gift card that I had received for free when I bought a $50 GC right before the holidays. Since I'm on a diet and the card had to be used up by 1/23, I figured it would be safer to just give it to her. She proceeded to load it to her app and it appears in her account, but when she placed her order, it wouldn't accept the card!  She was just going to charge the food to her debit card, but I urged her to use the other gc that I had given her with a $4.99 balance on it and she did. So no money out of pocket for her :)

  • We got to Panera very fast since it's not so far from the library and she wanted to wait 10 minutes in the car for the order to be ready but I wanted to go ask them about the $10 gc (which I had bent in half after she had input it in her app, but I was able to unbend it, thankfully!). Good thing we went in because her order was already there for her. The cashier didn't know why the card didn't work in the app, but she scanned it and there is $10 on it so I gave the card back to my daughter and she'll have to use it in store.

  • I wanted to go to CVS since it was on the way home and it would save me a stop on Thursday but my daughter didn't want to go. I told her she would wait in the car and eat her soup while I did my shopping so she agreed and did. I bought:
    • 2 boxes of Special K Red Berries on sale @ 2 for $4.00 and redeemed (2) $0.75/1 coupons from a Kellogg's email
    • 2 boxes of Special K Red Berries cereal bars on sale @ 2 for $4.00 and redeemed a $1.00/2 printable coupon
    • 1 gallon on whole milk on sale @ $2.79
    • The register wouldn't accept the cereal bar coupons and the assistant manager said "we can no longer accept coupons when they beep, no exception!" so I told him that I had written to Corporate to ask about that and they had told me it wasn't true but I didn't have that email with me . He wouldn't budge so I said I would only buy the milk today, then.  The cashier was very sweet and said she wanted to understand why the coupons wouldn't work and she looked at them very carefully, made sure I was buying the right stuff and then told me she was pushing them through anyway. So nice, and so obviously they can still do that if they choose to! So I bought the whole thing.  
    • I redeemed the $5 in ECB from the Beauty Club since they expire on 1/8. That left me with an OOP of $3.29 (including $2.79 worth of milk, you can't use ECBs to pay for milk) and I charged it to my CVS gift card that I earned via our USAA Visa Rewards program so it was all free to me.
    • I'll earn KFR points from my purchases automatically via my ExtraCare card.
    • I will receive $1.00 from Checkout 51 on my purchase of cereal bars, thus making those a money maker!

  • Before we went home, we stopped at RaceTrac where we each redeemed a survey reward code to get a 32 oz fountain drink; I got a soda for Youngest Son.  As we were walking in the store, I spied an empty 20oz bottle of Coke in the trashcan, so I grabbed the cap. My daughter didn't want to be seen with me, lol!  Then as we walked out of the store, the same trashcan had an empty 20 oz bottle of Diet Coke that I hadn't seen, so I grabbed that cap too. My daughter was so mortified that she started backing up the car and leaving without me, hahaha.  So 3 Coke bottle caps today, woohoo!

Back home, I was really exhausted like I hadn't slept last night.  And I still hadn't exercised. I was thinking about exercising right away but I had to put the groceries away and then it was time to start cooking the lasagna!  So I didn't sit down until 6 p.m. The laundry isn't folded, the living room wasn't vacuumed and I haven't exercised yet. I'm also behind on drinking my water and I haven't input my food into MFP yet. Argh, day 2 of my diet and I'm failing already!

  • I cut all the piece of naan bread into fourths and frozen them 4 at a time, giving me bread for 8 meals at 90 calories a piece :)

  • I also froze one of the bags of Sandwich Thins.

  • For the lasagna, I used 1 lb of ground turkey and 1 lb of ground chicken, both bought on clearance, homemade marinara sauce with tomatoes from my garden, a container of ricotta cheese that I had bought well before Christmas (so glad to have used it up), Parmesan cheese that I had frozen and some vegan or vegetarian parmesan cheese that I had gotten for free a while back, lasagna noodles from Aldi and a block of mozzarella cheese that had been in my fridge for several weeks! It was a perfect dish to use up quite a few items and we'll have lots of leftovers that I'll freeze for a future dinner.  

  • The lasagna was delicious. I packed half a piece away for Greg's lunch at some point, and put the remaining 4 portions in the fridge until tomorrow when I'll make room in the freeze for them.  We also did use one of the 4-pieces of naan bread :)

  • In the mail today, I received the latest issue of Kiplinger's Magazine via a free subscription.

  • I submitted receipts for rebates.  Checkout 51 credited my account within a couple of minutes!

  • I had decided not to water my plants today, since it felt like it was going to rain all day. But it didn't... until 8:45 p.m.! It's now raining pretty heavily, which is awesome-sauce! ALL the plants are getting watered and for free, woohoo!

  • Mobisave transferred $0.10 to my Paypal account.

  • I exercised for free at home, using my recumbent bike while listening to an episode and a half of Frasier and checking Feedly on my phone.  Exercising at 9 p.m. worked very well. Greg is on his computer, the kittens are usually busily playing at that time or sleeping soundly.  They barely bugged me at all tonight!

  • I entered my walk from Sunday and bike riding from yesterday and tonight in Walgreens' Balance Rewards for Healthy Choices and earned a total of 300 BR points.

  • Gas and tolls for Greg to get to work and back
  • Gas to run errands and back

  • Despite my telling my daughter NOT to put her large cup of lemonade on the arm of the futon because the kittens constantly knock things off that arm, she did it anyway... now there's been lemonade spilled all over the floor and my cables in between the 2 futons so when I go to vacuum tomorrow, I'll need to pull the futons away and mop as well or we'll get ants or something. So far all the cables seem to work fine...

  • I didn't do everything that I had designated as a priority for today :(

  • Despite not eating much today, I still ate too many calories and way too much sodium. I might need to rethink eating my lovely cranberry almond chicken salad for lunch and go back to hard boiled eggs. Sob.

  • Hairdresser tip: $2
  • Groceries and coffee filters: $6.22
  • $5 Amazon gift card from Microsoft Rewards
  • 5 books borrowed from the library
  • 4 packages of naan bread
  • 3 cans of soup
  • 1 package of fruit cups 
  • 1 package of sandwich thins 
  • 1 gallon of milk
  • 2 boxes of cereal
  • 2 boxes of cereal bars
  • 2  fountain drinks (32 oz)
  • 3 coke bottle caps
  • Latest issue of Kiplinger's Magazine

  • Fed the cats
  • Cooked Greg's breakfast
  • Packed his lunch
  • Drank 2 cups of water before coffee
  • Started SB videos
  • Replied to my brother's email
  • Replied to blog comments
  • Reflected on today and wrote To Do list/list of priorities for the day
  • Dehydrated old bread
  • Froze leftover meatloaf and cheeses
  • Ran the dehumidifier in the downstair bathroom
  • Replenished both bathrooms with rolls of toilet paper
  • Earned reward program credits 
  • Set a Camel, Camel, Camel alert
  • Set up a recurring automatic transfer to savings
  • Texted reminder to Greg re: VPN access
  • Made my bed
  • Got dressed in exercise clothes!
  • Made Greg's bed
  • Checked my passport's expiration date
  • Checked the upstairs litter box (was empty)
  • Sprayed bleach on bath mat in bathtub
  • Sprayed bleach in shower and on shower liner
  • Firmed up plans with BFF
  • Added an item to donation basket (DVD set)
  • Processed bread crumbs
  • Cleaned kitchen countertop
  • Put away dishes that were draining
  • Organized and decluttered under the kitchen sink
  • Defrosted pumpkin puree
  • Switched menu for tomorrow/Thursday
  • Took down Christmas decorations
  • Dusted living room
  • Rehung regular frames over mantelpiece
  • Swept Cat Room, breezeway and exercise room
  • Shook out Ripple Rug #1 outside
  • Put away scented candles that we didn't use
  • Added 2 items to donation box (microplane and Puffy Shirt frame)
  • Affixed felt pads to mixer
  • Schedule lunch with my friend Juliet next week
  • Purged my coupon organizer
  • Filed the food coupons
  • Dropped off son at Great Clips
  • Shopped at Publix
  • Stopped by library
  • Drove to Clermont library with daughter and borrowed books
  • Picked up her food and straightened out the gift card situation
  • Got soda for son at RaceTrac
  • Picked up discarded bottle caps :)
  • Put everything away
  • Cut up and froze naan bread
  • Baked lasagna
  • Took 3 recycling bins down to the curb for collection tomorrow morning
  • Fed the kittens
  • All through this, discussed trip ideas with daughter
  • Put away leftovers
  • Loaded the dishwasher and started it
  • Washed pots and pants by hand
  • Did my heel exercises
  • Submitted receipts for rebates
  • Exercised
  • Ran dehumidifier in bathroom after my daughter's shower
  • Reset my alarm for 6:30 a.m. on weekdays so I can be up when my son leaves for school and ready to drive him if necessary.
  • Recorded food, exercise, and water intake on MyFitnessPal

  • Noticed that the kids had left the box of Donut King donuts on the kitchen table so put a kitchen rag on it so I wouldn't be tempted. Out of sight, out of mind. Also instructed my son to finish the donuts today! Greg turned them down last night as he is going on a diet as well.
  • Drank 2 glasses of water before finishing my first cup of coffee (I almost forgot today!)
  • Breakfast was a bowl of generic crispy rice with ~2% milk and a brown banana, plus coffee
  • I found the lid and straw for the large RaceTrac cup so I filled it with water
  • Noticed last night that my beloved Cranberry Chicken Salad contains more calories than the Chipotle Chicken salad that I just finished :( When I opened the container that I had defrosted, there was some oily stuff floating at the top (?) so I drained it.
  • Lunch was 1 bowl of black eyed pea soup, the cranberry salad sandwich on a flatbread, and 2 clementines. I drank water.
  • Afternoon snack was an apple and I drank water.
  • Dinner was a piece of lasagna and I drank water.
  • Exercise: used the recumbent bike for a little over 33 minutes and 6.01 miles
  • I went over my calorie allotment (including those earned by exercising) by 25 calories. It also looks like I ate wayyyyyyy too much sodium (crap) and that's not even counting the lasagna because I chose to do the "Quick Add" thing in MFP where you just add the calories instead of all the individual ingredients of a recipe.
  • I drank 8.5 cups of liquids today (6.5 water, 2 coffee).
  • For technology. Sometimes it does make life easier!
  • For my daughter's flexibility and enthusiasm about going on a US road trip!
  • For a kind cashier at CVS who accepted my coupons despite her store's policy
  • For lots of freebies today!
  • For finding the energy and inspiration to get on the bike at 9 p.m. when all I wanted to do was... not that!


Sorry there aren't any photos today, barely. When I look at the pictures that I took, they're not all that interesting and if I want to have the energy to get on my recumbent bike for 30 minutes at 9 p.m., when I need to do other things now than upload boring pictures :)

However, there is hope for world peace after all.  This afternoon, Mean Kitty was lying down next to New Kitty and she was touching her butt and neither of them was spitting or hissing at one another! Amazing!

I hope you had a great Tuesday!


  1. King of Queens is my all time favourite show, ever. My family makes fun of me because at least wedkly, something happens in real life that reminds me of an episode of King of queens. Lol. Pathetic, I know :).

    You did well meeting your goals today. I pinched a sciatic nerve while shoveling slush and spent the day in pain. Good times.

    1. Ouch! Are you feeling better today? Every time Greg talks about moving up North, all I can think of is shoveling snow, de-icing the cars, putting on layers and layers of clothing and then discovering you have to pee... ugh. I think I was meant to live in Florida, hahaha.

      KoQ cracks me up! You'll have to tell us stories from your life, then, it sounds very entertaining :)

  2. You might not have achieved everything on your list, today, but you sure did a lot of things, including getting your exercising done! Glad your daughter is happy to do a road trip instead of going to France. I remember the summer my parents and I packed up our car and drove from Florida to California. It wasn't a recreational trip, though, as we were moving to California, and we had a very limited budget which didn't allow for an extra night on the road. But it was a lovely experience.

    1. I was so pleased with myself to have gotten on the bike! I wonder if I should just always bike at 9 p.m.

      We're excited about the trip! So many places to visit, the country is so vast so our challenge is to keep it reasonable. I don't want to be driving 8 hours a day! I'm glad she's overtaken the planning, I'll just chime in with suggestions. We're going to check out National Parks and also hopefully interesting festivals and fairs, museums, libraries. Greg's worried that we'll be gone forever!

  3. It looks like you had a great Tuesday! I was able to do almost 10,000 steps yesterday, I did over 15,000 in on Monday. Today at 10:45 AM I'm already almost 7000. Happy new year !

    1. Oooh, that's awesome! So do you walk around while you teach your students too? 7,000 steps by 11 a.m is something else! I have no idea how many steps I take. I suppose I should enable my phone to count them but last time I did that it was counting steps while I was just sitting down so I gave up. Do you have a Fitbit or some other gadget like that?

  4. You did a lot yesterday! I'm impressed. I'm also excited for your road trip -- Michael and I had such a wonderful time on our vacation out west last year. I hope you guys have just as much fun!

    1. It's always so impressive at the beginning of the year when I have the motivation to meet my goals! And then by the time November rolls around, I just want to crawl up in a ball and watch TV all day.

      But I did more than I thought I did, yesterday. I think that trying to think of priorities for the day does help. I got sidetracked again today but then I consciously reminded myself that I had things I had said I would do, so I stopped the other stuff (which was, actually, planning our trip!) and made myself vacuum. So I think I'll keep on doing that.

      We had thought to go to Arizona but she also wants to go to New England and we can't really do both in the same trip unless we're gone for a month, so she decided we'll do the Northeast mostly this year and then I suggested that we do the Midwest/West next summer for my 50th birthday :)

  5. Someone lit a fire under your butt. Maybe you could send that someone up north to do the same here? Holy Moly! Your To-Do list for the day resembles my list for the entire month. You not only got your list done, but you cleaned and organized your "under the sink" cupboard and threw some donations into the donation box. Way to go Nathalie. Don't burn yourself out please.

    1. Funny, I was just telling myself today that not everything has to be done in the first month. But at the same time, I ought to take advantage of the motivation while I have it. I really need to stop getting sidetracked and stay on task so I can accomplish everything that I have designated as a priority for the day!

      Are you feeling any better?

  6. Nathalie.
    I don't thinK I can scan and email... if I can I don't know how to do it. Lol The diet I was mentioning is called the Diabetic exchanges. If you would feel comfortable I could mail it to you... Don't be too hard on yourself with the diet... you are eating less and working at exercising. Improvement is good...we don't need perfection. Keep plugging!

    1. You're sweet, Bonnie, thanks. I found this online, does it look something like what you're talking about (even if it's not the exact same)?

    2. Yes that is it...however, there is also a chart which shows how much you should have from each group.. for the # of calories that you are planning on for a day. For 1200 calories:
      Breakfast is: 1 starch, 1 fruit, 1/2 milk and 1 fat.
      Lunch is: 1 starch, 1 vegetable, 1 fruit, 2 meat and 1 fat
      Afternoon snack: is 1 starch
      Dinner: 2 starch, 1 vegetable, 1 fruit, 2 meat and 1 fat
      (I usually try to do 1 starch at dinner so I have a starch left for an evening snack ( :)
      It's great to have an accountability partner... I'm finally sticking to this... now if I can just keep at it!

    3. Ha, that would be very helpful, I can see that! Does it have what you're supposed to eat if you're at about 1,360 calories? That's what MyFitnessPal thinks I should be eating based on my stats and how much I want to lose. Thanks, I need to check into try to follow this, it would help in getting more fruit and veggies in my diet. The only thing I'm worried about is the starch in the afternoon because I'm already sleepy in the afternoons and the starch makes it worse. ALso, it sounds like I'd have to add a serving of EVOO or butter to my rice crispies, LOL. Can a fat be cheese? I guess I should go back and print the page that I found with the explanation of the exchanges *wink*

      I'm proud of you for sticking to this, Bonnie! Let's try to stick to our diets for the whole month of January. I packed my lunch today since I knew I'd be on the road at lunchtime and also my water, I was so glad that I did!

    4. on the 1200 calorie I forgot the bedtime snack of 1 serving milk

      1500 adds another starch at breakfast, another at lunch and 1 for a bedtime snack. For approx 1400 you could only add 2 more starches and not 3. The trickiest past about 1 starch is checking the packages to be sure that your 1 starch is only 15 carbs... Cereal is an important one to watch often A serving size on the pack is like 45 carbs so you want to only have 1/3 of what they say. As far as snacks... for your starch as long as it is 15 carbs you are good...so you could have another fruit or nuts etc...

      The other thing besides the water that I know you are doing... I had read if you can get 30 grams of fiber it speeds up weight loss. Obviously, I had just put on 3 or 4 lbs from holidays so those come off quick but since I weighed in Sun Am following these guidelines..I'd lost 3 1/2 lbs. this morning. It will mostly likely be about a lb. a week one now that weight is off. Hope that helps!

    5. and dont worry about the fat... we get enough of it in other things that we're. probably not even aware of.... sometimes my fat is peanut butter on a piece of toast or if you have chicken salad at lunch it may be more thatn the one fat you are alloted. This plan is great for adjusting to your meals...

    6. Thanks so much for the info Bonnie! It's all new to me so it's going to take me a while to digest it (ha!). I'll have to take time this weekend to really read it well and that I understand how to use it for myself with the types of food I have at home.


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