Wednesday, July 30, 2008

Weighing In #23

It’s weigh in time here at Weighing in on Life. I’m proud to report that I had a one pound weight loss this week. I was really hoping for more but I’m satisfied with one pound. I won’t be at the weight I wanted to for my fiancé’s reunion but I’m ok with that too. I still hope to be at my goal weight by the end of the year.

Over the last week, I didn’t too much working out. I did a couple minutes of some programs on FitTv. I did them while dinner was cooking so they were short. I’d have to say they were pretty good and hope to check out more of their programs in the coming weeks. I did get some swimming in and one day I got up at 4AM to walk on the treadmill.

For this week, I plan on getting up and walking in the morning. I am going to take my boss up on the offer of coming late and using it to my benefit. I would also like to try to make it to the YMCA at least 2 days. Other than that, I will squeeze in as much exercise as I can. With the heat on the way (above 90 temperatures), I’d say I’ll have a couple days of swimming too (You know, the days that I leave work early for an appointment – appointment with my pool).

My goal for this week isn’t really about losing any weight even though that’s my main goal. I’d like to incorporate more exercise into my daily routine and eat more vegetables (yuck!).

Food and Exercise Log - 7/30/2008

Daily Allowance Points: 27
Weekly Allowance Points: 35

Lunch: Breaded Chicken sandwich and fries (14 points)

Dinner: Chicken Fettuccini (7 points)

Dessert: Ice Cream (5 points)

Daily Points Used: 26

Weekly Points Used: 0

Exercise: none yet

Wordless Wednesday - Kittens

No pillow? Make do with what you have!!

Check out other's Wordless Wednesday posts here and here.

Laid off – count down to my final day (12 working days to go)!

I thought I was going to have to stay home again with a sick kid but I sent him anyways. Now that I've made it into work, I wish I would have just stayed home.

We got news yesterday afternoon that we will have to work our 30 days. It really sucks! In other words, I will spend 12 more days in my "jail" cell watching movies and surfing the internet. Oh wait! I do have some personal time that will need to be used up...another 2 1/2 days off! What can I do about the other 9 1/2? Come in late and leave early!

I have to say that I have never had such a negative attitude like I have today and the past couple. I can't wait until I can finally say "goodbye" to this job!

What am I doing today? Besides typing this, I am going to show my co-worker how to push buttons on an application I built so that she will be able to run it in the future. Sound like fun? I don't think so. Sounds like a complete waste of my time but it gives her time to sit back and do nothing.

UPDATE: I almost forgot that I will be attending the orientation at the Transition Center so that will be a plus (especially if they tell me I can get my schooling paid for).

I went to lunch with my mother today since I was starved. I walked out this morning without my breakfast and lunch. My boss was at the same restaurant and bought my lunch.

Summer Blowout Sale!!

Do I have a deal to tell you about?

Money Saving Mom is having a Huge Summer Blowout Sale on all her ebooks, downloadables, and audio workshops-including her Supermarket Savings 101 eCourse (over $100 value). They are all on sale in one package deal for $5.97! Hurry, though, as the $5.97 price is only good for today. Tomorrow, the price will go up by $3. Friday, it will go up another $3. And Friday night at midnight, the sale is officially over with.

If high fuel and food costs are discouraging you and leaving you strapped for cash, you definitely need to buy this ecourse. You'll learn how to cut your grocery bill by up to 50% or more and have fun saving money at the same time!

Click Here! for information and to order your copies today!

$1.50 Cheesecake @ The Cheesecake Factory - Today only

Today is National Cheesecake day!

To kick-off their 30 year anniversary celebration and to help us celebrate National Cheesecake day, the Cheesecake Factory is offering a cheesecake slice for $1.50! They will offer every delicious slice of its more than 30 varieties of cheesecake with a dollop of nostalgia by featuring all cheesecakes at $1.50 per slice, limit one per guest, dine in only, on that day—as they were when the restaurant first opened in 1978. You got it! Only $1.50 for a slice of cheesecake that normally costs about $6!

Click here to find a location near you.

Tuesday, July 29, 2008

Tackle It Tuesday - Cabinets

I love checking out the posts for Tackle It Tuesday over at 5 Minutes for Mom. This week I decided to participate. I was a little unsure of what to tackle until my youngest son needed a bowl for his popcorn. I thought, "Oh no, not the tupperware cabinet!" I tackled the tupperware cabinet and the paper/plastic cabinet.

Tupperware cabinet - before

Paper/Plastic Cabinet - before
I feel so much better now! What can I tackle next?

Food and Exercise Log - 7/29/2008

Daily Allowance Points: 27
Weekly Allowance Points: 19

Breakfast: Iced Cappucino (4 points), Frosted Flakes (3 points)

Lunch: Turkey and cheese sandwich (3 points), chips (7 points)

Dinner: Grilled Chicken, Pasta, Corn (12 points)

Daily Points Used: 27
Weekly Points Used: 2

2-4PM - swimming
7PM - 15 minutes of LO Max on FitTv
8PM - 50 crunches, 25 jumping jacks

Laid off – count down to my final day (13 working days to go)!

Today started off very boring. The one report that I run was sent out by 7AM. After that, I logged onto the internet until 8 when I had to leave to get my sick son. Now, I will spend the day at home - cleaning, doing laundry, maybe go for a swim later, and get stuff ready for our garage sale that we will be having on the 14th and 15th of August.

I had to rescheduled my orientation at the Transition Center. I was able to get an appointment for tomorrow afternoon. Thank goodness!

Monday, July 28, 2008

Menu Plan Monday 7/28/2008

Now that soccer season has started back up, I thought it would be a good idea to get back on menu planning. This week we will be using up the meat that we have left so it’s pretty boring. I’m going to spend the week looking for new recipes.

Sunday – Cheeseburgers, fries, corn on the cob

Monday – Pork Chops, green beans, salad
Dessert - brownies

Tuesday – Chicken, Pasta, Corn

Wednesday – Chicken Fettuccini, Garlic breadsticks

Thursday – BLT

Friday – Tacos and burritos

Saturday – My fiancé’s 30 class reunion dinner

Sunday – Class reunion family picnic

To check out other menu ideas, visit I’m An Organized Junkie.

School Supply Sales @ Office Supply Stores

Here's a list of school supplies that are on sale at office supply stores. The kids and I headed to Staples yesterday to grab up some of the offers. Today, my mother and I headed to Office Max and Office Depot to see what they had left. Office Depot didn't have anything left except for the colored pencils.

Slider Pencil Case .01¢ (Limit 2 per customer)
2 pocket Plastic Report Cover .20¢ (Limit 10 per customer)
Staples Mini Stapler .25¢ (Limit 3 per customer)
Assorted Bic Pens and Highlighters .99¢

Free after rebate:Electronic Pencil Sharpener $14.99- $4.99=$10-$10 Easy Rebate=FREE
(pay $10 in store, get a $10 rebate)

Office Depot (each items is limited to 5 per customer)
Office Depot School Glue .01¢
Office Depot Faux Wood Ruler .5¢
Office Depot Brand Marble Composition Books .30¢
Crayola Colored Pencils 12 pk .50¢

Wilson Jones Assorted 1" Poly Binder .50¢
Tug Brand Backpacks $2.99

Free after rebate item for this week:
Ticonderoga Dry Erase Markers 4-pk $3.99 (Limit 1 per customer)

Office Max (each item is limited to 3 per customer unless otherwise noted)
Schoolio Von Hoolio 12" Ring Binder Ruler .01¢
Schoolio Von Hoolio 24ct Crayons .01¢
Sharpie Mini Highlighter .05¢
Schoolio Von Hoolio Assorted Grips and Erasers .25¢

ACME Blunted or Pointed Kids Scissors .25¢
300ct Index Cards Ruled or Blank .99¢
OfficeMax 5pk Pink Erasers .99¢
Microban 5" Scissors .99¢

72ct Yellow Pencils $1.99
8 tab Insertable Dividers .99¢ (Limit 4 per customer)

I'll post my purchases later this week. I didn't get much since I have a stash of school supplies but I did get a few deals.

Laid off – count down to my final day (14 working days to go)!

Can I please be released from this job?!?! My boss came by this morning and said that she was trying to get us released this week. So, I might have to sit here bored out of my mind for another 3-4 days. Wonder if they would mind if I brought my scrapbook stuff in to work on? That's something I would love to do but never have the time to do.

I have nothing to do except take care of personal business. I did find 3 rebates in my bag that needed to be copied so I could mail them. Then my Fitworks $25 gift card offer needed a copy of driver's license so I could mail it. So, I have those ready to be mailed on my way home from work.

I also had to look up some Oral and Maxillofacial surgents that are covered under my dental plan. The one my dentist referred me is not covered. I'm going to call the insurance company to double check. It's close to my house and the daycare so it would make getting to the appointment, getting the kids picked up, and getting home much easier!

Food and Exercise Log - 7/28/2008

I did it! I did it! I got up this morning at 4:00 AM to walk on the treadmill. There's a little bit more to that though. It was a challenge. My fiance said he was going to get up and swim laps in the pool. So, I told him I was going to get back to walking on the treadmill in the mornings. He I offered a challenge. I WON!! He didn't swim laps.

Daily Allowance Points: 27
Weekly Allowance Points: 20

Breakfast: Iced Cappucino (4 points), Fruity Cheerios (4 points)

Lunch: Turkey and cheese sandwich (3 points), grapes (1 point)

Dinner: Pork Chop (5 points), Green Beans (0 Points), Salad (4 points)

Dessert: Ice Cream (7 points)

Daily Points Used: 27

Weekly Points Used: 1

4AM = 1.06 miles/150 calories/20 minutes walking on treadmill
4PM = .5 miles/80 calories/8 minutes walking on treadmill
7PM = 15 minutes of Core Max I on FitTv
8PM = 30 minutes of walking

Food and Exercise Log - 7/27/2008

Daily Allowance Points: 27
Weekly Allowance Points: 27

Breakfast: Toaster Scrambler (5 points)

Lunch: 2 pcs of Pizza(18 points)

Dinner: Cheeseburger, corn on the cob (11 points)

Daily Points Used: 27
Weekly Points Used: 7

Exercise: water aerobics

Food and Exercise Log - 7/26/2008

BEWARE - Bad food choices, pizza...

Daily Allowance Points: 27
Weekly Allowance Points: 35

Breakfast: Toaster Scrambler (5 points)

Lunch: Personal Pan Pizza (12 points)

Dinner: 2 pcs of Pizza(18 points)

Daily Points Used: 27
Weekly Points Used: 8

Exercise: walked (no mileage or calories burned recorded)

Saturday, July 26, 2008

FREE Museum Admission

Mark your calendars - Museum Day - Saturday, September 27th, 2008

Enjoy free general admission for you and a guest to hundreds of museums and cultural venues nationwide. All you have to do is present the Museum Day admission card. Click
here to get yours. You may want to check out there locations here first. They ask for the location you are planning to visit.

Laid off – count down to my final day (15 working days to go)!

The boss gave us the day off since she couldn't release us and all we are doing while in the office is surfing the internet or watching movies.

I had a very productive day. I cleaned the house from top to bottom. I scrubbed walls and baseboards. I cleaned ceiling fans, vents and windows. I cleaned all the hard floors. Then I mowed and weeded the front and back yard. I picked weeds and dead plants out of the flower beds. After all that, I relaxed at my older son's soccer practice.

I had mentioned earlier in the week that I had applied for three jobs. I got a call from one of them. I was excited until the lady asked me for salary requirements. She asked me if it was negotiable and without saying anything she told me that the position normally only pays $15-20K. WHAT?!?! I made that when I started with my current employer. NO WAY! So, I was very discouraged.

Saturday - I received another rejection letter! I guess being a stay-at-home mom might be the only option I have. Since I can't take a job for $15-20K to pay a daycare center.

Food and Exercise Log - 7/25/08

Daily Allowance Points: 27
Weekly Allowance Points: 35

Breakfast: Coffee (3 points), Toaster Scrambler (5 points)

Lunch: PB & J Sandwich (7 points), Fiber One Strawberry Yogurt (1 point), Strawberries (1 point)

Dinner: Mexican Casserole (10 points)

Daily Points Used: 27
Weekly Points Used: 0

Exercise: none. However, I thoroughly cleaned the house (washed everything - baseboards and all), mowed and weeded the yard, and did a little gardening.

I do have to say that I wasn't as hungry today as I normally am. Hopefully this is the way I feel everyday that I am home.

Laid off – count down to my final day (16 working days to go)!

I'm a little late posting this but I wanted to get them out there.

Well, Thursday was a pretty good day. I was able to get a lot of things accomplished. I contacted the Transition Center to schedule an appointment to talk to someone regarding assistance for school. The Transition Center helps those that have been laid off from work. They seem to be pretty busy these days, according to the lady that answered the phone. The soonest I could get in was Tuesday (29th). I super excited because I would really LOVE to finish school (and not have to pay for it). I only have approximately 8-10 classes to finish my associates degree. I've ran into many road blocks along the way so hopefully the road is clear this time around.

I also got a few little things taken care of. I even got some rebates filled out and ready to be sent out.

I have to tell you. I've really gotten to the point of making jokes about being laid off. We had a team meeting and the boss (yeah the one that laid me off) had said that we (actually they) will not be running ad-hoc reports anymore. One of the girls replied, "What are we supposed to say to them when they request one?" I immediately jumped in and said, "Tell them the position has been eliminated!" I thought my boss was going to fall on the floor. The others just laughed. It was great!

Food and Exercise Log - 7/24/2008

Daily Allowance Points: 27
Weekly Allowance Points: 35

Breakfast: Coffee (3 points), Fruity Cheerios (2 points)

Lunch: Smart One Italiano Calzone (6 points), Fiber One Strawberry Yogurt (1 point), Strawberries (1 point)

Dinner: Beef Goulash (8 points)

Dessert: M&M Ice cream Sandwich ( 5 points)

Daily Points Used: 26
Weekly Points Used: 0

Exercise: none

Thursday, July 24, 2008

Food and Exercise Log - 7/23/2008

Daily Allowance Points: 27
Weekly Allowance Points: 35

Breakfast: Coffee (3 points), Fruity Cheerios (2 points)

Lunch: Smart One Italiano Calzone (6 points), Fiber One Strawberry Yogurt (1 point), Strawberries (1 point)

Dinner: Beef Goulash (8 points)

Dessert: M&M Ice cream Sandwich ( 5 points)

Daily Points Used: 26
Weekly Points Used: 0

Exercise: none (cleaned house)

Free Starbucks!!

I was very excited when I opened my Inbox to find an offer from Starbucks for a free Vivanno blend. They come in Chocolate Banana (yummy) and Orange Mango Banana.

Do you want to know how to get your free Vivanno blend on July 25-26? If you have a registered Starbucks card, you can take that in to any Starbucks store on July 25-26 and get your free Vivanno blend. If you don't have a Starbuck's card, you can get one with any dollar amount then register it online and return to Starbuck's to get your free Vivanno blend.
As much as I would like to take advantage of this offer (since I do have a registered Starbuck's card), I will more than like be skipping it unless I decide to walk to the nearest Starbucks which is 3.4 miles away. I'll burn the calories that I will take in from enjoying it! (Not likely to happen)

Wednesday, July 23, 2008

Laid off – count down to my final day (17 working days to go)!

Even though I was told by my boss that I could come in later in the mornings, I couldn't do it. Exercise is better than coming to a job that will only last a couple more weeks; however, I am committed to this job until they release me.

What have I done today? Pretty much nothing! I did a little VBA this morning and that's it. Since this morning, I have been surfing the internet. I've requested a bunch of samples, coupons and even applied for a couple jobs.

I'm leaving early to take the kids to the dentist which will be a real treat! They are both already terrified!

Weighing In #22

Weigh in time here again. This week I weighed in 3 pounds heavier. Yep, I gained 3 pounds. This was long coming. I knew it would catch up to me sooner or later. I do have that T.O.M. to blame a little but not for the total weight gain. I’m not going to make excuses. I know that I’ve ate things this past week that I shouldn’t have but I have been on an emotional roller coaster. I am dealing with some of the toughest times I’ve had to face thus far in my life. Getting up at 4:00 am to walk on the treadmill hasn’t happened since May and I’ve been eating whatever I wanted when ever I wanted. However, if I am at work, I am careful about what I eat. It might also be that I don’t have a bag of chocolate, tub of ice cream, or cookies sitting right in front of me either. Things have got to change!

Over the next week, I will begin to get back in the routine of counting points and exercising. My YMCA membership is one of the non-essentials that is about to be cut out of my budget. I would really hate to lose it but if were not going to use it I’m not going to waste the money on it. Maybe if I tell the kids that I will be getting rid of it because we don't use it, they will encourage me to go. (HA HA)

I’m going to work on getting back in the routine of writing down everything I eat and counting points. I will also be adding exercise back into my daily routine. It won’t be as hot this week so maybe my motivation and energy levels will go up. I need to get back into the blogosphere and check out other losers success stories for motivation.

With a little over a week to go until my fiance's reunion, I don't think much weight is going to come off. However, I am going to try to get those extra 3 pounds off before then.

Tuesday, July 22, 2008

Laid off – count down to my final day (18 working days to go)!

Glad Monday is over with but Tuesday isn't any better. As a matter of fact, I have been sitting at this desk since 7:00 AM with NOTHING to do! I did apply for a couple jobs that I found out on Monster Jobs.

This afternoon we decided to meet with our boss to see if they could move our displacement date up. She said it wouldn't be this week but she would revisit it next week. Hopefully, next week will be our last week of having to come in here and do nothing. My boss stopped by to let me know that I didn't have to come in at 6:30 am, if I wanted to let the kids sleep an extra hour and come in later, she would be fine with it. So, maybe I can get back to exercising in the morning. I would LOVE that!!

Stay tuned to my weigh in tomorrow...I don't look for it to be a good one though.

Laid off – count down to my final day (19 working days to go)!

Well, it was another wasted day in the life of a laid off worker. I unpacked my tub that the movers had delivered to my new cubicle. I even wiped down the whole desk, overhead bins included. My desk is really clean and bare right now.

I was supposed to train a co-workers yesterday on an "important" report that I run. They chose to turn it into a 10 minute meeting and didn't want to go over much. Ok by me but just remember - don't call me with questions once I'm gone! It will cost you to get information out of me! (Wow, did I really say that? Let's just say it's not easy coming to work when you know your days are numbered.)

That's it...nothing exciting unless you call check out the blogosphere and requesting freebies fun. Wait, I do!!! As a matter of fact, I guess I need to be adding my blogroll to my sidebar. Maybe tomorrow...

Monday, July 21, 2008

Laid off – count down to my final day (20 working days to go)!

Ok, I forgot to post this on Friday so I'm posting it now. Day 24 was rather boring at work. It was packing day and moving personal items to our new building. I didn't have anything to move to my new location. I had already removed all my personal belongings. So, I went home and enjoyed the afternoon in the pool.

Thursday, July 17, 2008

Laid off – count down to my final day (21 working days to go)!

Today was basically the same as yesterday. I ran my morning report then started rebuilding a few databases. We had a team meeting this morning too. It was rather odd. It was the "normal" meeting. We didn't share what we had going on and what was needing to be done, on an individual basis.

The other team members received a list of my applications that they would be taking over upon my departure from the company. I was asked by one co-worker "When do you want me to take a look at them?". Duh! As soon as possible, I hope to have everything transitioned by the end of the month so I can be let go early!

At 3:00, I received an email from an Executive Vice President. He wanted me to call him at 4. What?!?! I leave at 3:30! I mumbled some words under my breath and replied "I will call you at 4."

I have to keep telling myself - be a good girl, you need your severance package. But I have to tell you, this one of the hardest things I have done (working after being told you have been laid off)

I WON!!!

I received an email with the subject line "You won a Grand Prize Family 4-Pack in the Family Fun Giveaway". I thought it was a joke so I deleted it and went out to lunch. While at lunch, I remember registering for the tickets through the Dayton Daily News. As soon as I returned to the office, I went into my deleted items to check for the email. It was true - I had one a Family 4-Pack for the Dayton Vectron Air Show. The prize package includes 2 Adult General Admission, 2 Children General Admission, 4 Hotdogs, 1 Parking Pass, and 1 Air Show Souvenir Program (valued $64.95/winner). Needless to say, I was super excited because my sons love to go see the planes. We weren't planning on going this year because of being laid off from work. Guess what? We're going now!!

If only I could win money!

Wednesday, July 16, 2008

Laid off – count down to my final day (22 days to go)!

I’m going to start a daily post for the next 26 days (or until my employer finally tells me to go) about working after being told you have lost your job.

If you haven’t been laid off before, I have to tell you it’s the worse feeling. For me, I felt like a LOSER! It broke my heart when my boss, of almost 9 years, told me my position was being eliminated. Not only that but I was the only one on our team and there’s another team member that does less than I do, has less experience and less knowledge of the applications that we use. I’ve pretty much gotten over most of that at this point. I’ve been told it will get better and that things happen for a reason. Hopefully it’s a good reason.

The one thing that upsets me the most is leaving friends. I’ve worked at my current employer for 11 ½ years. I was 19 years old when I was hired (turned 20 years old 5 months later). It was a great feeling to have a full-time job making quite a bit of money without having the college degree that was required. Now that parts coming back to bite me (not having a college degree).

The bad part is I have to work until August 14th. It could have been worse though. It could have been my whole 60 day notice period.

So, what am I doing at work today?
I’m rebuilding a database for the secretary, building a database for a quarterly report for lead opportunities, and training my co-workers. I get to train the co-worker that I talk to on a semi-regular basis and that has my cell phone number. Don’t like to burn bridges but once I am done…I am DONE, don’t call me for help.

I’ll update this post today if anything exciting goes on; otherwise, stay tuned for tomorrow’s post.

Weighing In #21

It’s Wednesday - time to weigh in again. This week I didn’t lose or gain any weight. It surprises me that I didn’t gain anything. I had a REALLY rough week last week. If it could happen, it did. The week ended with the transformer being struck by lightening and we were without power for 28 hours! Good thing we had a generator!

I didn’t keep good track of my points last week. I’m going to try to keep better track this week. I’m also going to consider not following a point system. I’m thinking that once I am done with work and at home all day I’ll be too busy to keep track. We’ll see. I did notice one thing this past week. The breakfast cake I was eating was more points that I thought. I didn’t notice that it was 2 servings until yesterday! So, it was 12 points not 6…OOPS! No more of those for me! I have found that I am not eating as much at work or even in the evenings when I am at home. So, I’m going to do a test “Does your job make you fat?” My last day at work is supposed to be August 14th (hopefully it will be sooner). I’m going to put that quote to the test. I’m thinking it’s true – or at least MY job. I’m already noticing the decrease in my appetite.

Working out? I did get back into working out on Wednesday and Thursday a.m. I did swim a few laps in our pool, some exercises and “ran” and jumped in the pool while carrying my youngest son around, mowed the lawn (thought I sweat out a pound or two, and went for a bike rid Sunday evening. I’ve been working on some projects at home too so I’ve stayed busy. I need to get back into a routine and stick with it. I really want this weight to come off.

My plans – make better food choices and workout more. I’d really like to see at least a 2 pound weight loss next week!I hope everyone else is doing great at reaching their weight loss goals.

Dunkin' Donut Coupons

Click here to register for Dunkin' Donut coupons. Enter your email address and zip code. An email will be sent to you with lots of coupons. Well, the initial email had 8 coupons for a range of items.

Friday, July 11, 2008

A few updates...

I wanted to post a few updates...

I went to the dentist this week. I switched dentists so I was very nervous. I will admit it was the best dentist appointment I've had in YEARS! My teeth are all clean and feel great! They weren't rough with my mouth. My filling that I lost was in my wisdom tooth. The dentists suggests that I get it pulled - he won't fill it. Sign me up! I would rather not have to deal with it. When one of my other wisdom teeth was pulled a couple years ago my old dentist chipped the tooth in front of it and never did anything about it. Now I need a root canal in that tooth. Other than that, everything is fine and dandy!!

Yesterday, I found out that I lost my job. My position is being eliminated or so they say... There were quite a bit of people that got laid off yesterday. I wasn't alone. As a matter of fact, my boss and her boss were laid off in the morning then my boss had to turn around and lay 5 people off. Working in the mortgage business sucks sometimes. I'm not going to post anything in great detail here since I'd like to finish my time with good standing and get through my severance package (first...LOL). I will not be looking for a job right away. I've been working since I was 12-13 years old so I really would like a break. I didn't have the "college" break that most people did. While I am off, I am going to look into some work at home opportunities, getting my oldest son ready to go back to school, hanging out at the county fair while the kids show their pigs, and getting my youngest son to start pooping in the potty!! This isn't a sad time for me...I didn't like my job, the people I worked with and I was totally burned out! This will give me a chance to refresh my mind and think about what I want to be when I grow up (LOL).

Fitness On Friday - 7/11/2008

 Fitness on Friday

It's Fitness on Friday again! On Wednesday, I did report a 1 pound weight loss (read about it and my goals here). It was great to finally see the scale go lower. I don't really have much this week - it's been a rough week. Which leads to my tip for the week. Don't let stress and other life events steer you away from your diet (lifestyle change). I've always said that I was an emotional eater. Beside the chocolate cake that I've had, I have been staying focused. I've been through quite a bit this week - high school friend's funeral, co-worker's death/funeral this week, sick kid, dentist (ugh!), my oldest son's father got sentenced to prison (which means no child support) and losing my job. Pretty stressful!

Visit Bye Bye Fat Mom to see what others have to say.

Food and Exercise Log 7/11/2008

Daily Allowance Points: 27
Weekly Allowance Points: 0

Breakfast: Coffee (3 points), Breakfast Cake (6 points)

Lunch: 100 Calorie Chex Mix (2 points), Salad (2 points)

Daily Points Used: 13
Weekly Points Used:

Exercise: none yet...mowed the lawn and sweat out a pound or two (hopefully)

Food and Exercise Log - 7/10/2008

Daily Allowance Points: 27
Weekly Allowance Points: 0

Breakfast: Coffee (3 points), Breakfast Cake (6 points)

Lunch: Toasted Cheese Sandwich (3 points), Fiber One Strawberry yogurt (1 point), Strawberries (1 point)

Dinner: 2 tacos (7 points)

Dessert: Chocolate Cake (5 points)

Daily Points Used: 26
Weekly Points Used: 0

Exercise: Walking on treadmill (30 minutes, 1.856 miles, 245 calories)

Thursday, July 10, 2008

Bad News...

I'm a little behind on my posts but I wanted to let everyone know that I was laid off from work today. Bad news...and good news. I can stay at home with my kids now. Well, that is after I do my time. I have to finish out my 30 days to get my work transitioned.

Being a single mother, this absolutely scares me. How am I going to provide for my kids?!?! What about insurance? So many worries right now...

I'll be back as soon as I can pull myself together.

Free Cookie @ Cookies by Design

I found this on a website that I visit throughout the day. Click here to send your friend a cookie. You will get a coupon for a FREE Cookie-on-a-stick from Cookies by Design. Note: Limit one coupon per family.
Click here to find a location near you.

Wednesday, July 9, 2008

Save On Cooling Your Home

Monday was the first day this summer that we’ve had to turn on the air conditioner. We normally just open all the windows and turn on the ceiling fans. The breeze usually helps keep the house cool. Not when the temperature is near 90 and it’s humid. I found the issue by suggesting we get in the pool and cool off but didn’t win. The air conditioner was turned on Monday afternoon.

This got me thinking. If we have to run our air conditioner, how can we save money by doing it?

1. Raise the temperature a degree or two.
I changed ours from 75 to 78. We have attic fans and ceiling fans that can do most of the work…not the air conditioner. I’ll just say that I haven’t had any complaints about it being warm or hot in the house.

2. Program your thermostat. If you don’t have a programmable one, spend the couple bucks for one. Turn the thermostat up when nobody is home.
Ours is currently set for 82 or 83 degrees from the time we leave the house until a half an hour before we should arrive home. I don’t want to walk into a HOT house!

3. Make sure your air filter is clean.
My fiancé cleaned (maybe even changed) ours out in early June.

4. Close vents, doors and blinds in rooms that aren’t being used.
We haven’t had to deal with this yet. If we keep the air conditioner on this weekend, I will close off my older son’s room since he will be gone for the weekend.

5. Move objects (toys, furniture, clothes, rugs…whatever it might be) off the vent. Allow the air to come through the vents.
I had to pull our love seat away from the wall. We have a vent that’s under there. Last night, I had to move my youngest son off the vent. He was cold so he decided to sleep on it to block the air from blowing on him (LOL).

6. Make sure your doors and windows are sealed with weather stripping, sealants or trim.
I found a door that needed to be sealed. The trim had come off. We need to get this fixed this week before our air conditioner goes on overdrive trying to cool off the outside.

7. Purchase window film. This will help with heating and cooling.
I found this product during the winter (February) but when we went to the store they didn’t have any in stock. I’ll be purchasing some as soon as I have the “extra” money.

Food and Exercise Log - 7/9/2008

Daily Allowance Points: 27
Weekly Allowance Points: 35

Breakfast: Coffee (3 points), Breakfast Cake (6 points)
*Not off to a good start. I need to ditch the breakfast cake and move on to something a little more healthy like my Special K with fruit.

Lunch: Progresso Light Southwestern Style Vegetable Soup (0 points), Toasted Cheese Sandwich (3 points)

Dinner: Homemade Mac & Cheese (7 points)

Dessert: Chocolate cake (5 points)

Daily Points Used: 24
Weekly Points Used: 0

Exercise: Walking/Jogging (Couch to 5K) - 20 minutes, 1.42 miles, 235 Calories

Weighing In #20

Is it really Wednesday already?!?! Time flies!! Well, Wednesday means it’s time to weigh in again. This week I lost 1 pound!! It’s not much but I’m glad to see that the scale has finally moved and in the direction I wanted. I’d like to see another 7-9 pounds come off in the next 3 ½ weeks. I was pretty motivated when my fiancé came home from his business trip and looked like he had lost 10-15 pounds (he was only gone a week). My thought – I can’t let him beat me at this weight loss thing! The competition is on now!

I really didn’t go over my points this week with the exception of Taco Bell on Saturday. No more Taco Bell for me. I know I can find food there that’s in a reasonable point range but I think it’s safer to avoid the place all together! I think my little dental mishap is still keeping me from eating some of things I love and keeping from eating too much of anything. I go to the dentist today so we’ll see what comes of that (those that know me know that I HATE going to the dentist – I’m worse than a kid…LOL)

Last week I said that I WOULD get back to exercising this week. I did but really didn’t do it. I did go to Fitworks (got my certificate for a free $25 gas card) and had plans on going Monday and Tuesday. I had to cancel on Monday and the trainer cancelled yesterday. So, hopefully I can get back there tomorrow. I got some walking in over the weekend when we took the kids 4-wheeling. On Monday, I worked out in the pool. I swam a couple laps, carried my son around the pool while jogging and jumping, and then did a few aerobic moves. But that’s where it ends…I didn’t do anything else. I still need to check out the two fitness tapes at home that I borrower from the library – Jillian Michael’s Shape Up – Backside and Yoga Booty Ballet Live. I put the Jillian Michael’s one in last night and only saw a couple minutes of it…it looks good but I’ll let you know for sure in the next couple of days.What’s my plan? The same as I said last week and the week before “Get my bottom in gear!” I need to get back to my Couch to 5K program. I need to get up in the morning to walk on the treadmill (no matter how tired I am and lately I’ve been pretty tired). Then I need to workout after work, take a bike ride with the kids or go on a walk with the kids. I also need to make sure I stay within in my point range and write down every little crumb or bite of food that goes into my mouth. I’m also looking at following Kim Lyon’s 12 week program…after reading her book, I think it’s right up my alley!

That’s all I have this week.

ULTA Coupon - $3.50 off $10 purchase

Ok, this may not seem that good to everyone but I thought I would post it. It works for me! ULTA has a $3.50 off $10 or more purchase coupon that is good until July 26th.

If you purchase $17.50 in ULTA cosmetics, minerals or formative skincare, you will receive a FREE 13-piece gift ($65 value!). Could make for an awesome deal!

While you are there, make sure you join their rewards club "the club at ULTA". Each quarter you will receive a Rewards Certificate (based on your spending) for FREE beauty products or salon services.

Click here to find a location near you!

Note: Check the events calendar here before you head out as well. You might want to wait a day or two before going so you can pick up some free samples!

Wordless Wednesday - Air Show

The Dayton Vectron Air Show is almost upon us again....

Tuesday, July 8, 2008

Food and Exercise Logs - 7/4/2008-7/8/2008

I'm a little behind so I am going to combine my Food and Exercise logs into one post.

Daily Allowance Points: 27
Weekly Allowance Points: 28

Breakfast: Coffee (6 points), Egg Sandwich (6 points)
Lunch: Cheeseburger (8 points)
Snack: Strawberries (1 point), Fiber One Strawberry Yogurt (1 point)

Daily Points Used:22
Weekly Points Used: 0

Daily Allowance Points: 27
Weekly Allowance Points: 28

Breakfast: Coffee (6 points)
Lunch:Queso Crunchwrap (12 points), Burrito (10 points)
Note - Taco Bell has permanently been removed from my restaurant/food choices!!
Dinner: 2 piece of toast w/peanut butter (8 points)
Dessert: 1/2 cup Fat Free Frozen Vanilla Yogurt (1 point)

Daily Points Used: 27
Weekly Points Used: 10

Daily Point Allowance: 27
Weekly Point Allowance: 18

Breakfast: Coffee (6 points), Breakfast Cake (6 points)
Dinner: Brat, sauerkraut, onion, mushrooms (5 points), Pasta Salad (6 points)

Exercise: Walking/Jogging @ property while kids rode 4-wheelers

Daily Points Used: 23
Weekly Points Used: 0

Daily Point Allowance: 27
Weekly Point Allowance: 18

Breakfast: Coffee (3 points), Breakfast Cake (6 points)
Lunch: Turkey Sandwich (4 points)
Dinner: Beef Patty w/A-1 Steak Sauce (6 points), 2 pcs of bacon (3 points)
Dessert: 1/2 cup Fat Free Frozen Vanilla Yogurt (1 point)

Exercise: Swimming, walked 1 mile, water exercises

Daily Points Used: 23
Weekly Points Used: 0

Daily Point Allowance: 27
Weekly Point Allowance: 18

Breakfast: Coffee (3 points), Breakfast Cake (6 points)
Lunch: Turkey Sandwich (4 points), Fat Free Sugar Free Banana Fudge Pudding (1 point)
Snack: Strawberries (1 point), Fiber One Strawberry Yogurt (1 point)
Dinner: Grilled Chicken, Whole wheat Chicken Alfredo Pasta, Baked Beans (10 points)

Daily Points Used: 26
Weekly Points Used: 0

Thursday, July 3, 2008

Reminder: Kid Workshops Home Depot and Lowe's

I wanted to post a reminder about the Home Deport Kids Workshop on Saturday, July 5th. Tomorrow will be a busy day for most of us. The workshops are offered between 9:00 a.m. and noon (while supplies last). You can read more about these workshops in this post.

This week’s project will be a birdhouse.

The next workshop is scheduled for Saturday, August 2nd. The kids will be making a flag holder.

While you’ve got your calendar out, Lowe’s dates for July Build and Grow Clinics are Saturday, July 12 and July 26. The projects are: July 12th – Dune Buggy and July 26th – Teatherball. You can read more about these workshops here and here.

Free Webinar featuring Kim Lyons

The People's Guide to Health Happiness and Longevity Featuring America's Favorite Personal Trainer, Kim Lyons on live webinar Tuesday, July 17th.

You'll learn:

• How to replace old unhealthy habits with new life-changing habits
• How to lose weight and achieve your fitness goals without dieting.
• How to avoid supermarket blunders and when it’s ok to give into your food weaknesses.
• How your relationships affect your ability to commit to a diet and exercise plan and what you can do about it.
• Simple exercises that you can do at home without purchasing home fitness equipment.

According to the ad on Kim’s website, ou will get 2 FREE gifts with registration. Hurry – don’t delay! This is a FREE webinar but space is limited. Click here to register.

If you can't make the webinar, you can find some helpful fitness and nutritional tips on Kim's website. Check 'em out.

Don't forget about her book "Your Body, Your Life" The 12 Week Program. You can purchase a copy here. I have a copy and started reading it last far, we'll worth the money! paid!

CVS Shopping Trip - Week of 6/30

The other night we needed some gummy worms for our Dirt Treats so we headed for CVS. I don't dare go to Super Wal-Mart for just one item - it's not worth the time and hassle! I forgot that it was the first of the month and didn't check out any of the deals online so I grabbed a book to see what they had for the month. Then off through the store I went...

Here's what I got...

2- CVS Pantiliners
2- CVS Tampons
2- CVS Cleaning & Makeup Remover Wipes

Gummy Worms
2- candy Baby Bottles (young son took one before I could take the picture)
2- candy bars (oldest son took one before I could take the picture)
50 ct CVS plastic Party Cups (for Dirt Treats and Pudding Pops)
Diego Garden Tools (75% Clearance - $.99!!)

I earned $10.96 in ECBs - teal items(tampon ECBs did not print correctly - note was left for manager and I emailed customer service).

Total OOP: $1.38 (not bad when it wasn't a "planned" trip and I had both kids with me)

Food and Exercise Log - 7/3/2008

Thank goodness this is the last work day for the week!! I have been swamped at work and have been staying busy at home trying to get things cleaned up and sorted to get rid of things.
I have an appointment @ Fitworks today to get my $25 in FREE Gas! Not only will I get FREE gas, I will also get a workout. A win-win situation!

Daily Allowance Points: 27
Weekly Allowance Points: 35

Iced Coffee (3 points)
Weight Watcher's Smart Ones Stuffed Breakfast Sandwich (5 points)

Combos (6 points) What was I thinking?!?! Eating because I'm tired and bored.

Smart One Italiano Calzone (6 points)
Fiber One strawberry yogurt (1 point)
Strawberries (1 point)

Pizza (12 points)

Daily Points Used: 27
Weekly Points Used: 7

No exercise.

Overall thought: Well, besides the Combos and pizza today was a pretty good day. I stopped by Fitworks for the certificate for a free gas card. They have a really nice facilities so I am going to go for my 14 day free trial. I think I'll check out the Cardio movie theater. I got lots of tips from the trainer and I plan to get many, many more tips and helpful information.

Wednesday, July 2, 2008

Family Fun: Dirt Treats

Last night, the boys and I made Dirt Treats. They loved the thought of “dirt” and worms.

Here’s the step by step…First, I gathered all the necessities from the cabinets – 3 (9 oz) Plastic cups, 3 plastic spoons, 3 Ziploc baggies, ice cream, Oreos, ice cream scoop and Gummy worms.
We started by putting 3 or 4 Oreo cookies in a baggie and crushing them to make “dirt”.
Then we filled our ¾ (or less) with ice cream. Placed our gummy worms in the cup.

Then dumped in our crushed Oreo cookies aka “dirt”

Then enjoyed!

Food and Exercise Log - 7/2/2008

This is the start of a new week and a new outlook on this diet thing.

Daily Allowance Points: 27
Weekly Allowance Points: 35

Iced Coffee (3 points)

Jell-o Sugar Free Fat Free 60 Calorie Banana Fudge pudding (1 point)

Smart One Pepperoni Pizza Smartwich (6 points)
Strawberries (1 point)
Fiber One Strawberry Yogurt (1 point)

Smart One Italiano Calzone (6 points)

2 - Mini Cheesecake (6 points)

Daily Points Used: 24
Weekly Points Used: 0

No exercise.

Overall thought: Not really too bad in the food department. I could have added some veggies to dinner but it was getting late. I don't normally like to eat after 8:00pm. My fiance comes home tomorrow so I wanted to get some stuff done. Nearly everything is done except mopping the kitchen floor. I can do that quickly after work tomorrow.

Weighing In #19

It’s weigh in day again! Weigh in days are sneaking up on me pretty quick these days. Well, again there was no weight change. This could be a good thing if I wasn’t planning on attending my fiancé’s 30 year class reunion in a month. Now I really need to get serious about staying in my point range and motivated to exercise. I have one month and it’s not looking too promising. I’m definitely not going to drop the other 53 pounds that I wanted to lose but I might be able to get another 8-10 pounds off.

My eating the past couple days has really improved. I’ve started to post my Food and Exercise logs again. I didn’t go over my points Monday or Tuesday so, I believe, I am back on track. I think my dental mishap helped me to keep from eating some of the foods I really wanted. Since I can’t get in the dentist for a week, maybe my bad habits will be broken by the time I get my tooth filled or pulled.

Workouts – what are those?!?! It has officially been over a month since I worked out. I’m not proud of that either. I WILL get back to exercising this week. As far as fitness classes, I will probably pass on those this week since the schedules have been revised for the holiday weekend. I do have two fitness tapes at home that I borrower from the library that I might give a try – Jillian Michael’s Shape Up – Backside and Yoga Booty Ballet Live.

What’s my plan? The same as I said last week “Get my bottom in gear!” I need to get back to my Couch to 5K program. I need to get up in the morning to walk on the treadmill (no matter how tired I am). Then I need to workout after work, take a bike ride with the kids or go on a walk with the kids. I also need to make sure I stay within in my point range and write down every little crumb bite of food or drink of beverage (other than water, I drink a whole lot of that!!) that goes into my mouth. I don’t know what else to do, do you?

Hopefully everyone else is on the right track towards their weight loss goals. Don’t give up like I did last week. Trust me – it won’t make you feel better.

Looking for a way to cut 100 calories? Click here to read through some suggestions.

WFMW: 5 Ingredients or Less Weight Watcher Recipes

Are you looking for some low calorie or Weight Watcher desserts for your 4th of July cookout? You came to the right place. Here are two crowd pleasers! Adults and kids will enjoy these so be sure to make plenty. Note: They do not have "diet" or fat free taste to them...promise!

Frozen Peanut Butter Cups

Yields: 12 servings 2 points per serving

1 8oz tub of Cool Whip Free Whipped Topping
1/3 cup Reduced Fat Peanut Butter **
Hershey's Lite Chocolate Syrup

Whisk 1 cup of the cool whip with the peanut butter and mix thoroughly. Fold in the remaining cool whip. Line a muffin tin with 12 paper/foil liners. Spoon about 1 1/2 tablespoon of the mixture into each of the 12 muffin liners. Top each with 1 teaspoon of the chocolate syrup - cover the cool whip/peanut butter mixture. Freeze! Once frozen, ENJOY!!

**If you can find Better 'n Peanut Butter, you can substitute for lower WW point value. I purchase mine at Trader Joe's.

Chips Ahoy Dessert
Yields: 9 servings 2 points per serving

1/2 cup fat free milk
18 reduced fat Chips Ahoy Cookies
2 cups fat free milk
1 8 oz. fat free Cool Whip
1 small box chocolate fat free, sugar free pudding mix (vanilla works too)

Pour 1/2 cup of the milk in a shallow bowl. Dip cookies in the milk very briefly and line 8 X 8 dish with them. Take 1/2 the Cool Whip and spread over cookies. Mix the chocolate pudding with 2 cups milk. Layer over top of Cool Whip. Dip next 9 cookies in the milk and lay on top of pudding. Top with remaining Cool Whip. Refrigerate at least 2 hours before serving.

Chips Ahoy Dessert from Lorie at Honey, I Shrank Myself

For more 5 (or less) ingredient recipes, visit Rocks in My Dryer!

Tuesday, July 1, 2008

Meijer Deals - Week of 6/29

I wanted to share my Meijer trip with you. If you need cleaning supplies, grab your Lysol coupons and head to Meijer! They have select Lysol Products on sale for ½ off! They were out of the Lysol Cleaning Wipes. If they don't have them by the end of the week, I'll be picking up a rain check for them.

Here’s what I got…

5 – Chi Chi Salsa
2 – Hormel Chili
4 – Lysol Toilet Bowl Cleaner
3 – Lysol Pourable All Purpose Cleaner
1 – Lysol 4-in-1 Bathroom Cleaner
2 – Yoplait Yo Plus Yogurt

Total OOP = $6.25

I had a coupon for everything that I purchased. I had to break it down into two transactions. As I was scanning my coupons for the second transaction, the sales clerk came over (I was at the U-Scan) because my coupon didn’t scan right. She told me the same thing I figured out on Saturday. They only double two coupons for the same item. If I would have put all the Chi Chi’s Salsa and Lysol Toilet Bowl Cleaner on the same transaction, it would have only doubled two coupons for the salsa and two for the cleaner the others would have been face value. Kind of a pain but I don’t mind doing two or three transactions when I can get the stuff for free or cheap!!

To see other great Meijer deals, check out Mommy Snack's Meijer deals.

Food and Exercise Log - 7/1/2008

I’ve been pretty busy today! I’ve got a lot of work that needs to be done and my computer isn’t cooperating.

Daily Point Allowance: 27
Weekly Point Allowance: 0

Iced Coffee (3 points) – I’m lovin’ my $.79 gas station iced coffee!
Jell-o Sugar Free Rice Pudding (2 points)

Turkey Sandwich (4 points)
Progresso Light Southwestern Style Vegetable Soup (0 points)
Jell-o Sugar Free Fat Free Banana Pudding (1 point)

Smart Ones Pepperoni Pizza Smartwich (6 points)

Dirt Cup (7 points)

Daily Points Used: 23
Weekly Points Used: 0

Again, no exercise. I really need to get with the program but with my fiance gone I am able to get SOOOO much done.

Overall thought: I wish I could stay within my point range everyday! Pretty good day. I really didn't have the "hungry" feeling all day. I just ate because it was time!

Firework Crystals

Items you will need:
* White Construction Paper
* Large Jar Lid (or something similar)
* Food Coloring
* Craft Stick
* Epsom Salts
* Water
* Glue
* Scissors
* Measuring Cup
* Tablespoon


1. Cut a circle (or whatever shape your lid or container is) out of the white construction paper to fit inside the jar lid (or other container). Glue the circle to the inside of the lid. Let it dry before continuing.

2. Fill the measuring cup with water. Add four tablespoons of Epsom salts and mix well with the craft stick. Pour the mixture into the lid. Add a few drops of food coloring.

3. Place the lid in a safe spot where it will not be bumped or disturbed. Let it stand for one day. Once the crystals have set, you can examine them and observe the needle-shaped crystals that you created. They should resemble starburst fireworks.

Family Fun: S'Mores

Last night, the kids and I made S’mores. Yummy! We had so much fun. My youngest son ate the Hershey Kisses as quick as I got them unwrapped. While my oldest, kept eating the marshmallows. Good thing they don’t take too long to put together, our ingredients would have been gone!

Here’s the step by step…

First, I gathered all the necessities from the cabinets – baking sheet, spreader, peanut butter, Hershey Kisses, and Marshmallows.

We ended up putting peanut butter on all of them (even if it was just a little to hold the marshmallows on). Then we topped it with 2 big marshmallows.

Followed by 3 Hershey Kiss.

I baked them at 350 degrees for about 10 minutes. Removed them and enjoyed!!