Moods and Tantrums!!!!

An hour of extra daylight every day was the bright spot of my work week, there is no doubt about that. Wow, how can children be so thrown off by one hour I will never know but they clearly are? This week has been a roller coaster ride of moods and tantrums!!!!

Which made exercising as a stress reliever almost impossible since no one was completely on schedule. Which then means my poor husband and son had to put up with a cranky wife and mother most evenings. Poor guys.So without making more out of it then it really is, here is what I did squeeze in this week for my health and well being.

Sunday: rest

Monday: home: 30 minute recumbent bike, total body weights, and a two mile mall lap walk since we had to go anyhow for a wedding gift.

Tuesday: gym: 30 minute elliptical, leg weights, and stretching

Wednesday: rest

Thursday: home: 30 minute recumbent bike, full body weight workout, stretching and foam rolling

evening: 3 mile trail walk to watch the sunset

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Friday: home: full body weights workout

Saturday: 1.5 mile evening walk….since we left home at 5a.m. for a day of fun I just could not find it in my heart to get up any earlier and go to the gym before we left.

 

Hello March….Your The Month I Wait For All Winter

Although I was feeling a bit unhealthy this week suffering from this nasty virus, it still was a great week for me since it was the beginning to another month…..March. Which means another month closer to summer.

March is a busy month for us here. Birthdays are spread all throughout the month, we have a day trip planned to attend an REI garage sale event for members, I have my first overnighter with a friend planned that I am so looking forward to, and don’t forget….this is the month where daylight gets longer in the evenings since we all change our clocks in a few days……hurraaaayyyy!!!!!

Since I have no workouts to share from this week of rest due to this nasty bug, I thought I would catch up on some of my favorite things lately. However, in all honesty, I did not rest completely…..I got in small workouts here and there because the guilt was worse than the virus plaguing me. Crazy I know, but it is what it is. Anyhow…
Remember those mirrors my son snagged before his employer threw them out….well they are up and I LOVE THEM!!! These will benefit my workouts so much being able to watch my form during yoga and weight lifting.

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Speaking of time changing and girl’s weekends….I have one coming up and we are so excited about it. A friend and I, that I have known for over 20 years, have planned our first over night girls weekend away from life here at home. We both do the same thing for employment….childcare. And if anyone knows anything about childcare you would all agree, winters are LONG! So we decided to take a weekend and go away over night to a near by town, stay at a bed and breakfast type lodge, shop, wander, and eat our way through 48 hours of not caring for anyone but ourselves and celebrate another winter passed. How cool is that? Does anyone else celebrate surviving winter????? Probably not, but that don’t mean we can’t.

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Speaking of surviving winter, it feels so good to be back outside with my kiddos. Fresh air does wonders for nap time, gives us all a new perspective on life, and makes them eat so much more food. I am so ready to pack away the puzzles, coloring books, and the finger paints and change over to sidewalk chalk, critter hunting, and bike riding. What about you?

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A few weeks ago I made a plan to try at least one new recipe a week since I was completely burned out on our dinner rotation. This has been going wonderful. We have tried many new things, some being keepers and some being not so great. However, I have not had to throw any out completely and we have not found ourselves ordering takeout due to any disasters. What have I learned these past few weeks during all this trial and error of meal planning? We LOVE sun dried tomatoes!!!!

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I have also been starting to stock up on our active seasons snack box that we keep stocked for those grab and go trips to who knows where. Typically, I will pick up trail mix, Clif bars, turkey jerky, nuts, chocolate, etc. and have that ready to go all spring, summer, and fall. Although, this year I am trying some new(to us) bars, and ideas for this box since I am not able to eat some of these prior things since surgery for some reason. Recently, I picked up numerous flavors of Larabars and this Nourish snack mix and found we love both and both agree with my new way of eating.

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That’s it for me today. My weekend looks a bit sketchy at the moment with many options, not enough time, and only one of me to be everywhere with everyone. However, I have narrowed it down to spending time with my husband since next weekend I will be gone and plus, we think we may start geocaching this weekend which is one of my favorite things to do together. So exciting….

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What??? 50 Degrees In February In Wisconsin….YeeeeHaaaa!!!!

How do I even try to explain how happy I was when I heard it was going to hit 50 degrees this week in Wisconsin. Explanation points, happy faces or just burst out with words like….yeeee haaaaa!!!!! This is completely a gift from up above and I will gladly except it with a big THANK YOU.

Something happens when it warms up over in our house. I become a happier human being, I find energy to cook, clean and make lists of things to cook and clean when I run out of time. Thoughts of vacations and places to visit start popping into my head and trails I want to hike become a date on the calendar and not just a thought. I send home reminders to all my daycare parents that we are headed outside FINALLY so prepare for muddy children. I go for walks outside instead of the local mall where we do laps…..so boring. All in all, things just become a bit brighter for everyone when I become a happier human being.

In my heart I know this is too good to be true, since it is Wisconsin and we could easily get one, if not more, snowstorms well into March, but for now I am taking it and loving every last minute. So take a look at what I did this week in the world of exercise. Not a single mall lap walk during the whole week and that I am so thankful for.

Sunday: gym: 30 minute elliptical and full body weights on the TRX suspension trainer

Monday: evening walk outside 3 miles

Tuesday: home: 30 minute recumbent bike

gym: 30 minute elliptical

Wednesday: evening walk outside 3 miles

Thursday: home: 30 minute recumbent bike and total body weight routine

Friday: rest

Saturday: trail hike of 2.5 miles…original plan was 3.1 miles but it was more like a skating rink so instead of falling and injuring myself, I cut it short and still had a wonderful time. Here are some pics from todays 50 degree hike in February.

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As for meals this week. I did not do very good at remembering to snap pictures but don’t think we did not eat…haha. I again tried two new recipes, this one which will be shared soon.

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and this one which turned out better than expected.

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And one night I rebounded to a family favorite of turkey fajita seasoned brats with veggies, and like always we enjoyed one dinner out on Friday evening.

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The highlight of my week next to the awesome weather we have had was when my son snagged some floor to ceiling mirrors from the gym he works at that they were going to toss out. One corner is a bit cracked and one is slightly chipped but hey, they will do just fine here at home. I have been wishing for mirrors for my workout area to keep an eye on my form when doing yoga and lifting weights but they cost a fortune to buy. Now we just need some time to install them….which until the temps turn back to freezing, this will not happen because WE WILL BE OUTSIDE……HURRRAAAYYYY!!!!

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Shivering Off Calories

Recently, I read an article in a magazine that shivering can burn as many calories as a half hour workout. First, I want to say, if this is true I have been working out all week, non stop, and should have lost weight without even trying. And second, I want to say, even though I may not agree with the amount of calories burned in a half hour of shivering….I do believe it’s exhausting to shiver for hours each day.

This week it has been frigid here in our area…..I mean, it hurts to go outside and have the wind hit you in the face. So, of course, I stayed in as much as I could and did anything possible to warm up, which meant I had more home workouts than gym workouts.

Sunday: gym: 40 minute elliptical, rowing, and stretching

Monday: home: total body weight workout, recumbent bike 15 minutes, stretching

Tuesday: a quick(15 minutes) home weight lifting routine….something is better than nothing at all

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Wednesday: mall lap walk 3 miles

Thursday: home: 30 minute recumbent bike, abs and stretching

Friday: rest

Saturday: gym: 45 minutes on the elliptical, rowing and abs

Last weekend I had a gentleman contact me to purchase my home gym. I was sad to see it go but knew in my heart the days of heavy lifting are over.

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So after he came to pick it up, I rearranged a bit, and assembled my new workout area.You really do not need much to get a really great workout at home if you know what your doing. This week, I have been finding my groove again and loving my new home routine.

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Speaking of this week, what a mess it turned out to be. Every Sunday we take a look at the calendar and have a pretty set plan of action for the week ahead. Tuesday is when it all fell apart after hearing a major snowstorm was on its way to our area apparently bringing too much snow to drive in safely for the upcoming weekend. Which meant, I needed to move some appointments around making time for them during the week, which in turn meant forgoing my original gym nights. This did not make me happy but sometimes life gets in the way. However, about mid afternoon Saturday during this snowstorm, I was chomping at the bit to go to the gym and convinced my husband that this was the reason we bought a SUV with all wheel drive….so we could still travel if needed during snowstorms. Which, in my opinion, I needed a workout at the gym in the worse way and eventually he said, “then just go.” So I did and let me tell you, it felt wonderful and I made it there and back just fine.

 

 

 

Ugga Mugga…..Another Long Week On My Own

This week was much like last week in that I was again, on my own all week. Hubby and I said goodbye to each other again Monday afternoon so he could catch his flight and I could face the week ahead on my own. Thankfully this does not happen too often with his job, but when it does it really rocks our world here at home. We rarely do anything apart, he is usually always home at the same time everyday and all my daycare children know when this time is, and honestly, it just makes life a bit crazy trying to work around when we can find the time to chat in between busy schedules. Add in a time difference (if any) depending on where he is compared to me here at home and it can get a little difficult…. I always pray I am the earlier time so I can go to bed at a normal hour.

Anyhow, like last week, I did what I wanted when I wanted to do it. Here is the outcome of my workouts this week:

Sunday: 1.5 mile walk

Monday: 3 mile walk together before dropping him at the airport, 30 minutes elliptical at the gym

Tuesday: gym:30 minutes elliptical and stretching

Wednesday:home: floor weight routine and 30 minute recumbent bike

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Thursday: gym: 30 minute elliptical, upper body weights, and stretching

Friday: rest

Saturday: rest…but a ton of big household chores…..scrub carpets, do loads and loads of laundry, and just hang out with my hubby who arrived home finally.

Meals were easy peasy since, for the most part, it was just me.  It sure makes grocery shopping much easier when its less mouths to feed. Here’s a peak at the meals from the week.

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Sunday: baked ham, roasted brussel sprouts, scalloped potatoes(family dinner)

Monday: philly cheese steak brat, sauteed perogies with spinach and bacon.

Tuesday: chicken and cheese quesadilla with stuffed poblano peppers(dinner with our son home)

Wednesday: sushi

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Thursday: bruschetta personal pizza

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Friday: out

Saturday: mom’s day off….fend for yourself

The week as a whole….I would say was pretty good. I love being back at the gym. Renovations there are almost complete and I am pretty excited to hear we will be getting kettle bells soon. I love kettle bells and wish I had more at home, so this is something I am really looking forward to having access to at the gym.

Life lately has been many unanswered questions…however, the one thing I am sure of is that winter is getting closer to making an arrival and I am preparing myself the best way I know how….I have a whole tub of hot chocolate, my Christmas list has an electric heated blanket on it, and I have stocked up on lip moisturizer….I literally have tubes of this stuff everywhere! The joys of frigid temperatures makes me want to cringe!!!!!

 

 

 

Big Changes Bring On Big Decisions

Gosh, I thought October flew by quickly but November has been even faster. It literally feels like just yesterday my family was vacationing in Arizona and now it’s mid November already. Alright, I admit, my Sedona tan is fading fast…..but I really don’t know what has happened to the first few days of November. Let’s catch up a bit on what’s been happening.

Wisconsin has seen some amazing temperatures so far this fall. Honestly, I am still going to the gym in shorts and not wearing sweatpants over the top of them. This is a miracle in itself. However, they say it’s on the way….you know that wonderful white stuff that covers every green surface I love so much….grass.

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Unlike my younger years when all my Christmas shopping was done by Thanksgiving and I spent the week of deer hunting wrapping while everyone was gone….I literally just started shopping this year. However, we really revamped the way we shop today compared to past years and I do not have many gifts to purchase at all. With very little contact with nieces and nephews it was time to make some big changes to the way we spend. Most will get gift cards and only the people we are close to get actual gifts. So it is much easier to shop today than it was when we had a bunch of gifts to purchase.

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I have come to the conclusion that I am as good as I am going to get. Let me explain a bit….January of this year(in case some of you missed it) I had major surgery. I was told it would take me a year to completely recover but without a doubt life has improved greatly. However, there are a few things that I have been trying to ignore, look past or really just try to get back to and simply can’t. Did I think 10 months ago laying there for weeks with so much pain that I would ever get back to normal….no not really…..but I am really trying to learn what my new normal is and I believe this next step will help. I have decided to sell my home gym weight machine. Now if you know me, this is a big decision. I LOVE to exercise!!! However, I have tried this machine numerous different ways and with much lighter weights than before surgery and everything I have tried causes me pain for at least two days afterwards. So then I back off, workout with different things for a few days all while this machine stares back at me and the guilt for not trying it again drives my crazy. So I do and again, two days of pain! I have discussed it with my doctor, I have done what they told me to do to try and remedy the issue and nothing is working. So I have decided to sell it to keep from torturing myself. I have to learn to live with my new normal and I can only hope this helps.

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As we approach Thanksgiving many people are planning to run/walk the Turkey Trot in our area on Thanksgiving morning. I however, am not into run/walks because, well, I am too cheap to pay the admission cost to walk on a street when I could do that right in my own neighborhood for free. Although, this did give me an idea and I approached a friend of mine who has given hiking a try and loves it and we are now planning to do a hike Thanksgiving morning together. Our plan is to hike a trail near us at a waterfowl preserve that is about 3.5 miles long. This should be a fun way to start a great Thanksgiving day and maybe we can make this a yearly tradition.

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I have also been experimenting with some new holiday warm drinks to take in a thermos on winter hikes. I came across one and tested it out this week and hit the jackpot. I even may make this for our Thanksgiving morning hike….it is so good!!!

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As for the next few months I am concentrating on just getting through the holidays. With Christmas parties planned, family get togethers planned, and hopefully a Christmas Day family hike somewhere, I just want to enjoy the next two months. January for me is when the seasonal depression really hits hard and I can only hope winter is not so rough….although everyone has told me the farmers almanac says its going to be a doozie this year. We also have some big plans coming up in January and possibly some big family decisions to make….but let’s not get ahead of ourselves quite yet…..the rest of November and all of December come first.

 

Back To Normal Life Once Again

Well, this week meant it was time to return to normal life again. Which meant back to work, errands, appointments, cooking and a little fun thrown in here and there. If only we could stay on vacation forever…..but then I believe it’s called retirement….right? And I am not even nearly close to that yet!

One thing I did not miss this week were those steps we had been training on for weeks prior to this trip.

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Yes, they made my legs feel so strong but they also took away my gym time which I love. The gym is my place to go for mental health treatment….a good workout is great for the mind. As of next week, by the time I get done working and dinner is over it will be dark, which means we plan to return to the gym on a normal basis.

Sunday I came down with what I call “plane plague”….you know…the every time you fly you get sick kinda thing. Which really put a bit of a kabosh to any big workouts because my head, throat, body….well let’s just say everything hurt.

So here is what I did manage for workouts this week:

Sunday: 4 mile hike with my son on an area trail

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Monday: floor weights/stretching, 3 mile walk with all the ghosts and goblins in our area

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Tuesday: 30 minutes on the recumbent bike, and weight lifting

Wednesday: 30 minute recumbent bike, floor workout, 3 mile walk

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Thursday: rest

Friday: floor workout with weights and stretching

Saturday: 4 mile hike with a friend

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As for meals this week…..I made a big batch of veggie soup and a big batch of slow cooker beef stew. This way we could eat a meal off both and freeze the remainder for quick, grab and go meals for lunches since our freezer meals were running a bit low.

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And to top off the week, I was treated to an awesome dinner of hibachi/sushi with my brother. WOW, was it fantastic!!!!

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