Tuesday, June 30, 2009

Our golf vacation

We are currently on a 48 hour family vacation. This is the first vacation that just the three of us have had. We have had a few other vacations, but those have consisted of going with other family members. We have been able to merge our vacations at the same time and are having a great time in Gatlinburg.

We have been talking to Hoss about going to Gatlinburg for about a month now. We got a few fliers for activites, one of which was for a new mini-golf course. This one actually. Hoss has talked about seeing the pigs and playing golf every day.

Naturally one of our first orders of business was to check out the golf course. This was Hoss' first time mini-golfing or golfing at all. He fell in love with the sport. He knows all about golf from playing the Wii with Daddy and was able to show us his skills.

The mini-golf course was cute and fun. We chose the easiest course since we had a newbie with us. A little expensive, but well worth it to see the joy from Hoss. All he has talked about tonight was "playing goff in Gatwinburg."

Here is Hoss with a few of the cows at the first hole.

Daddy and Hoss with some of the horses. All the animals would talk when you hit the ball in certain areas. The horses neighed and moved their heads.

Mommy and Hoss waiting for our turn. It is nearly impossible to get Hoss to look at the camera for pictures.

And a couple shots of Hoss' golf form. I'm not sure if he has decided if he wants to be right or left handed yet. Mommy and Daddy are both lefthanded, so I think he chooses to do things lefthanded at times just because he sees us doing it that way. He mostly chose to golf left handed, but would often stradle the ball and hit it between his legs.

My favorite part of Hoss' golf technique is that he will hit the ball once from the beginning (with his one handed swing), then will pick up the ball, run to the hole, sit the ball down right beside the hole and hit it in. Then he will take the ball out, sit it by the hole again and hit it in. He would repeat this as long as we (and the people behind us) would let him.

I guess we will be hitting up the local mini-golf course when we get home.

Before and Now

I was looking through old pictures last night while I was looking for a "before" weight loss picture. My Weight Watchers leader encouraged me to enter a contest they are having nationwide for the most successful and inspiring weight loss stories.

I honestly doubt I will win. I am not at my weight loss goal. Heck, I have 101.4 pounds to go. But, I thought it was worth a shot. Plus, this way I know what I need to do for next year's competition, right?

In typical Jessica fashion I have waited until the very last minute to get this mailed by the deadline (must be received by Monday). It will go out in the mail today, only after I stop at Walgreens this morning on my way out of town to pick up my before and after pictures and an envelope to mail it all in.

Anyway, I thought I would share my before and after pictures with you all. I know I have lost a good deal of weight, but I am still not pleased with my appearance in my after picture. It just doesn't seem dramatic enough. Oh well, next year it will be amazing. Right?

Here goes.

My before picture (taken in Sept. 08)

My after picture (taken yesterday...I'm a procrastinator remember?)

Ok, that was tough. I hate sharing pictures of myself. UGH!

Monday, June 29, 2009

Perty by Thirty Week 25

My scale at home didn't move much, but the Weight Watcher scale did. And really that's all that matters. Especially when it moves down, like it did this week.

I lost another 3.2 pounds. Bringing me to 62.4 pounds total. My BMI has dropped 10 points! That is making me happy.

I have several challenges this week. We are heading for a short vacation tomorrow. Then 4th of July activites are scheduled. I am really going to have to stay focused, plan ahead, and continue to exercise.

I have been exercising daily for the past three weeks and it has made all the difference. I found that the hotel we are staying in this week has a fitness center. At least this is what their website says. I sure hope they aren't lying because that is my main plan for exercise this week. And possibly my only hope for the scale to move down again next week.

Well that and wearing this lightweight dress again!

Wednesday, June 24, 2009

10 things I have learned (so far) during my weight loss journey

1. My body is very predictable. Every four weeks I can expect a weight gain (although, I was able to squeak past that dreaded week this past month with exercise!). It’s those darn female hormones that do it! It is such a joy to be a woman.

2. Eating healthier makes me feel better. I don’t feel gassy and my stomach doesn’t roll and yell at me after eating. I don’t feel so full I could throw up, but I do feel full and satisfied. However, if I eat a greasy food, I will pay for it. That’s motivation not to eat it, right?

3. I have a lot more energy. I offer to go outside with Hoss instead of sighing and making up excuses when he asks. That’s what 60 pounds will do for ya!

4. I am a proud person. At least I’m turning into one. I am caring more about what I look like and how I appear in certain clothing a lot more now than ever before. I am aware of the potential for arrogance and I’m trying to keep myself reigned in. However, I really need a spray tan and my teeth whitened. Maybe even some veneers.

5. My skin does not appear as oily. I’ve always had oily skin and recently this seems to be a bit less than normal. Except for when those hormones sneak up on me.

6. Accountability is a requirement for me. If I don’t have people to report to or who are there to motivate me and make me move, I often won’t do it. This is as simple as writing down my exercise for the weight loss incentive program at work. I know I have to document if I did it or not, so that makes me get off my rear and get moving.

7. I don’t have to be deprived of my favorite foods. If I want something I love that is nice and fattening, I can have it, but will have to accommodate for this food throughout the day. I also have found a lot of yummy low point alternatives to my favorite foods. These make me very, very happy.

8. Verbal encouragement is an amazing motivator. At least for me it is. However, I have to be cautious how I respond to the encouragement. Sometimes I slack off on my point counting and start to eat bad things because I know I look good. Other times it makes me want to keep working hard so I can look even better.

9. Weight Watchers is saving my life. Literally. As long as I don’t get hit by a car today (or anytime), I’m going to be living a long and happy life…as a skinny girl!

10. If I am determined, I can do anything. I’m certain that is true for anyone. The trick is finding the determination and motivation. It is only something that you can create. The only person who can change you is you. It’s a hard lesson to learn, but it can change your life. Seriously. It’s changing mine.

Monday, June 22, 2009

Perty by Thirty Week 24

I made up for my small .8 pound weight loss last week with a 4.4 pound loss this week! This brings my total loss to 59.2 pounds.

I believe all of this loss is related to incorporating daily exercise into my life. I have been walking daily for 30 minutes. Well, except this past Saturday when I did a Richard Simmons work out video and went on a bike ride with my sister.

I may have caught the biking bug. I'm considering finding a bike for myself. But I will make sure I get the comfort seat! OUCH!

I'm hoping I can keep up the loss and add to it next week. I'd love to hit the 60 pound mark by my 6 month mark (July 5th).

Wish me luck!

Thursday, June 18, 2009

The days of the week...

Sometimes I do things that make me think maybe I have this motherhood thing figured out. And then my child hits me when I tell him that he can not run across the street in front of traffic. Obviously, I will never have the whole motherhood thing down pat, but I try.

I recently had a great idea that made me feel like I had it all figure out. I made a calendar.

I know, it seems so simple and so silly, but it has been so beneficial for Hoss. This summer Hoss' schedule will change a lot as we have a variety of different activities and plans. He has difficulty when his schedule changes often, so I thought I would help him feel prepared as possible.

I made a summer calendar that indicates all of our fun activities we have planned.

Hoss is attending daycare for 6 weeks during the summer and I indicated this with small stars, so he would know which days he would be at his "new school." (I can't tell him he is going to school in the mornings because he always corrects me by saying, "my NEW school."). By the way, he is absolutely loving his new school and is actually doing very well. Much relief for me.

I also noted birthdays through the summer (mine, hubby's, Pap's, and cousin), our scheduled vacations (a short trip to NC -- this past weekend -- and Gatlinburg in a couple weeks. He is really looking forward to Gatlinburg, I think because of the bear sticker I put on the calendar). It also indicates when his regular school starts again and trips to visit grandparents.

We are marking days off every time I remember. Each time I note the next upcoming event and we talk about how many days it will be until that day. I have been very surprised how much Hoss has shown interest in the calendar. This may be something I will have to do year round.

Wednesday, June 17, 2009

The coolest craft yet

I have a difficult time throwing away items Hoss has made. But, at the same time, you can only have so many colored pictures of Peter walking on water or popcicle stick houses. When I am picking out crafts for the kids I work with at church I try to ask the question, "Will they use this again? Or will it be thrown away?" And while, I understand that some parents have different perceptions of trash or treasure, I try to pick items that are more likely to be considered treasure.

That being said, Hoss did the coolest craft recently at church. It was a homemade chia pet. See.

I am not sure the exact facts about how to make this, but I did do a google search. I'm all about the research over here. I found these instructions.

Our grass guy (as we so affectionately called him) lived for nearly two months. Then I forgot to add water to the cup (an empty yogurt cup in our case) and his hair stopped growing and he died. Even with more water added, he never revived. I guess his name wasn't Lazarus.

Or I just don't have the power to heal.

Economical Exercise

Want to figure out how to exercise for free or cheap?

Yeah, me too.

Maybe these tips will be helpful.

Tuesday, June 16, 2009

I'm back...back in the CVS groove

Last week I drug myself back to CVS and I did awesome. Remember? 53 cents is all I spent!
This week I decided to tackle ole CVS again. The adrenaline high from the 53 cent deal was still in my blood stream.

I scoured the ad on Sunday while returning from a quick road trip to North Carolina to visit family. You can breathe easier, I wasn't driving. I was glad to have the time to check out the ads and make my lists while searching my coupons. I don't normally get that time much anymore.

I made my list and Monday Hoss and I ran to CVS after work/daycare. (By the way, Hoss is attending a daycare for the summer and is doing really well. He also loves it, which is a relief!).

I did not do as well as I did last week, but I also didn't do bad.

Here is what I purchased:

* 1 Crest Pro-Health mouthwash 250ml $2.99 (yes, I got some last week, a bigger bottle, but we were out before that. I'm always thinking ahead!)
* 1 Schick Quattro razor $7.99 (again, I bought a razor last week, but you can never have too many, right?)
* 1 Purex 3 in 1 laundry sheets $6.99 (I was totally intrigued by these. I haven't used them yet, but I'll let you all know what I think when I do)
* 1 M&M $1 (I had to bribe the three year old, it's what I do best)
Total -- $18.97

Coupons I used:
$4 off Schick razor -- $14.97
$2 off Purex 3 in 1 -- $12.97
$11 in ECBs (from last week's purchase) -- $1.97
Tax -- 48 cents

Total out of pocket -- $2.45

I earned $7 in ECBs to use in the future. Maybe they will have mouthwash on sale again next week. If so, I'm there!

Monday, June 15, 2009

Perty by Thirty, Week 23

This week was my normal 4 week mark when I gain weight. I am proud to say I did not gain this week! I lost .8 pound. While it was a little disappointing to lose so little, I am happy that I did not gain.

This week I added exercise into my weight loss routine. I believe this was the reason I lost weight this week and did not gain. I walked every day each week for at least 30 minutes.

I have been doing my walking during the week with co-workers during our lunch break. My company began a promotion to encourage us to lose weight and get healthy. The promotion is a 50 day challenge to be active with exercise for 30 minutes daily. I am hoping the exercise will prove to be helpful in my weight loss journey.

My Ways to $ave Wednesday posts for the next two weeks at Bluegrass Moms will be about tips I have received at my Weight Watchers' meetings over the past few weeks. Be sure to check out the first one about exercising economically this Wednesday.

Friday, June 12, 2009

It's a party...a pizza party!

I got into the Dominos House Party. If you aren't familiar with house parties, check out their website. Basically, different companies of all different types (restaurants, television shows, juice, tuna, etc.) offer opportunities to host a party to debut new items. These parties are for anyone who is interested in participating. You have to request to be a host and a few weeks before the party date (determined by the website) they will select hosts.

I just recently began to request to be a hostess. I was thrilled to get in on one of my first requests.

On June 20th I will be hosting a house party for Dominos pizza's American Legends pizzas. My house party pack arrived a few days ago. In a pizza box!

The pack included a $75 gift card to purchase one of the new six American Legends pizzas as well as "You Gotta be Kidding," a "Would you Rather" kids version game, coupons for the game, and coupons for free popcorn at AMC movie theaters.

We will be visiting my parents on the 20th and will be hosting the party at their house. All of our extended family has been invited and I'm sure we will have a great time testing the new pizzas!

I will be sure to let you all know what we think. And I hope the party doesn't ruin my weight loss! :)

Thursday, June 11, 2009

I'm back in the game!

Tonight I finally ventured out to CVS for this week's deals. I have been slacking recently in deal hunting and even let some of my CVS Extra Care Bucks expire! I know. The horror!

I was able to rack up $9 in ECBs a couple weeks ago and noticed some deals in this week's ad that I wanted to check out. I made my list and gathered my coupons and headed to the store.

And I rocked it!

I got all of the following:

And I only paid 53 CENTS!

This is how I did it.

I purchased
1 Contour glucose monitor -- $14.99
2 Dawn dish soap -- $2
1 Fusion razor -- $7.99
1 Crest Pro 1 liter mouthwash -- $3.99
1 ALS $1 donation -- $1
Total: $29.97

I used these coupons:
$30 off Contour monitor adjusted to $14.99 -- $14.98
50 cent of Dawn dish soap -- $14.48
25 cents off Dawn dish soap -- $14.23
$1 off Crest Pro Health mouthwash -- $13.23
$4 off Fusion razor -- $9.23
$9 in ECBS -- 23 cents
Add tax of 30 cents
My total was 53 cents!

I also earned $11 in ECBs for my next shopping trip.

I'm so excited about my deals. It is rejuvenating and reminded me of the "great deal" adrenaline I love! I hope I can keep it up.

Tuesday, June 9, 2009

"It's alright cuz we're saved by the bell"

I have to admit that I spent the majority of my pre-teen/adolescent years getting up on Saturday mornings to watch NBC's Saturday morning line up. I specifically looked forward to "Saved by the Bell."

Zack and AC were so dreamy!

I can't tell you how thrilled I was to see Zack Morris made an appearance on the Jimmy Fallon show last night.

If you missed it last night (like I did), check it out here. If you are a child of the last 80s-early 90s you will love it!

Perty by Thirty -- Week 22

I turned it around this week and lost 3.8 pounds! Yippee!

I am up to 54 pounds lost total.

My employer began a fitness initiative this week that they do annually. A group of us at work joined up and we are hoping to lose the largest percentage of weight! Part of the initiative is to do some type of exercise for at least 30 minutes for 50 days. Yesterday we walked for 30 minutes during our lunch break and we have plans to do so again today! Having friends on the same track really helps with the motivation factor.

Next week is the typical 4 week mark in which I gain weight. I am determined not to gain this time. I am going to count my points carefully and exercise every day in hopes a weight loss will be seen at the scale next week.

Plus, my three year old told me that I looked like Big Show (a wrestler) when I was wearing my swim suit on Sunday. Next summer he won't be saying that!

Sunday, June 7, 2009

The first school program

Last week Hoss' preschool class had an "end of the year" program. I had few expectations for Hoss. He is not much of a performer. He loves music, the focus of the program, but he does not wish to perform in front of crowds or with others. He's more of an appreciator of music.

I tried to encourage Hoss to participate during the week prior to the program. I wanted him to know it is fun to sing to other people. Despite my excitment for the upcoming program and constant encouragement, Hoss was not much of a performer.

At one point the class doned fun sunglasses and sang "My Girl." Needless to say, it was the cutest thing! And, also needless to say, Hoss did not participate.

First he refused to turn around when the song began.

Well, maybe I'll turn around sideways.

Ok, fine! I'll turn around, but I will NOT participate.

It doesn't matter though. I'm still a heartthrob.

Ok, I guess I'll point to Mommy when they say "My Girl."

These glasses make everything dark.

Now that's better!

Thursday, June 4, 2009

Celebrities in your midst

Look! We are celebrities.

(If you click on more pictures you will see pictures of me and Hoss and Hoss by himself. Just don't look at the food I'm eating!).

Tuesday, June 2, 2009

Perty by Thirty -- Week 21

Good Grief! (Yes, I'm Charlie Brown) I gained weight again. I just can't get two weeks in a row where I loose weight. This week I gained 1.8 pounds. I know it is not the 4 week mark, but I'm going to blame hormones and the lovely female cycle. I retained fluid horribly yesterday. My feet even swelled. I guess the heat and the cycle combined were a bad combination for me.

Let's hope next week will be better. I'm going to do my part to make it better!