Sunday, November 29, 2015


Good evening!!

Or night?  I dunno, it's nearly midnight.  I figured it's been awhile since I have been on here and updated about how my life was going.  We will start with the diet and exercise bit and get that out of the way.

I have not been exercising.  I know "I don't have the time" is an excuse, but to be honest, I spend all my time writing and researching.  For now, with no job, it's hard to keep up and I am constantly looking for ways to make a little extra here and there.  For now, that's writing.  I do alright with it.

As far as eating is concerned.  I don't really do much of that either.  I know, that's bad, but I'm not hungry.  I'll grab a snack or something, usually popcorn or some chicken or tuna salad and a slice of bread, but for the most part, I eat maybe on meal a day.  I tend to get up to late to eat breakfast, because I stay up late writing or researching.  I usually don't eat lunch because I know I'm going to be starting dinner almost as soon as the boys are home from school.  So, I use that time to write.

I am also looking at a few other ways to make some income.  I'm not particularly crafty and I haven't come up with a unique item that would probably sell, so I'm a little stuck there.  Still not overly worried about it.

Now, on to the good stuff.

Everyone tries to be thankful for what they've got when Thanksgiving comes around.  They do their best to look around and appreciate the wonderful people and things they have in their lives.  I am no different.  Being without a job is hard, having no money is hard, catching up is hard.  You know what?  I don't feel any hardship.  I have looked around, taken stock and come to terms with what I've got.

I have a wonderful family.  My husband and my kids are the light of my life.  My man takes care of us and, even though he tends to be a worry wart, he takes the time to hear out my next zany idea.  He is supportive of me.  What more could a girl want?  My kids.  Oh man, my kids are something else. As infuriating as they can be at time, I love the little buggers more than my life.  They have so much to offer and see the world in such interesting ways!

Over Thanksgiving break (from Thursday to Sunday) I also had many opportunities to spend time with some of my extended family.  My mom came to visit from Kansas and I spend pretty much all of Thursday through Saturday with her, either at my home or at my aunts house.  On Thanksgiving we had an awesome meal with turkey and ham and all the ooey gooey goodness that gets set on the table.  For the first time in my life I wasn't completely miserable when I finished eating, which means I did good in stopping when I was finished and didn't overeat.  It's a small accomplishment but there it is.

There was some drinking, some football, some bunko.  Oh man is bunko ever fun!  I admit we were a loud raucous group that night! My brother came over, as well as my uncles brother and sister in law. It was a relatively small gathering but still incredibly fun.

We were there again on Saturday and played some cards.  I do love cards.  Russian Rummy or some such mess is what we played, and I whooped their butts!!  I am the queen!!  My cousin came home from her trip to Kansas about then so we went ahead and played some more cards.  Lots of laughing and memories were made.

Sunday, we got an unexpected surprise.  My husbands brother, his girlfriend, her daughter and mom all came by on their way through.  They are on their way to Disney World, but made a stop so they could stretch their legs and spend some time.  It was a nice surprise and a chance to see old friends and make a new one.

In short (haha) I haven't slept much, I'm so tired and my house has been trashed, my kitchen is a total wreck, my kids are exhausted, but I am also so happy.  I am grateful to have been able to enjoy this entire time with my family, have fun, and make memories.  Weekends like this are the ones that stick with you.  They may seem like simple little things to most people, but to a few of us, these little things are the world!

I hope you did as well on your Thanksgiving as I did on mine.

Sunday, November 22, 2015

Approaching Holidays

Man this has been a crazy week.  I find myself writing so many articles that I forget to update my own blog!
To be honest I really don't have much to update.  I have a crazy sleep pattern and having been getting up early enough to exercise.  I've been focusing on my food intake, so that's helpful.  My main focus at this point is to make money, not only to cover our bills, but also because Christmas is coming up.

I'm not really nervous about the holidays.  Before when I was in weight loss mode, I would get all super stressed out about what I was gonna eat.  I'm done with all that.  This year I'm going to focus on other things besides the food. I'm going to enjoy time with my family, my mom is coming.  I'm gonna play some card games and generally have a good time.  That's what it's all about afterall.

I do need to work on getting my sleep pattern under control.  It's crazy how when I was working I never had time for anything, but now that I'm not, I still have time for nothing.  How does that work out?

I have been doing a lot of research lately and I think I came up with some great homemade gift ideas that I can also turn onto things to sell throughout the year.  I'm pretty stoked about that.  With a little investment I can make a lot and hopefully sell quite a bit.

Monday, November 16, 2015

Inches Matter or a Matter of Inches

Guys!  I can not begin to tell y'all how important it is to ditch that scale and find other ways of measuring your success.  And I say success because that is what you will get.  A slight up fluctuation can send you into a tailspin and make you feel like a failure, that is the problem with weighing daily or weakly.  I can honestly say that I have NO IDEA how much I weigh right now.  While I'm not altogether comfortable with the shape of my body, I'm learning new ways to use it, to change it, alter it to be the body I want it to be.  I don't care much about society standars, I want to be fit, healthy and strong for me.  Ok, mostly for my poor knees, which actually means I will have to weigh less, but that's kind of like an added benefit to this whole thing.

So today, after my kettlebell workout (which totally kicked my butt today,) I went for my usual 3 mile walk.  It rained a bit so I got a little wet.  I mean, that's what happens when you walk out in the rain!  Anyway, when I got home, I noticed my shirt seemed a little longer than usual.  I figured maybe cuz it was wet?  No matter the case I went ahead and did some chores, showered, etc.  The next shirt I put.....also seemingly really long to me.  Maybe I just never noticed they were that long, but I'm pretty sure when I wore these and put my hands over my head, my belly would hang out. "Hello world, look at me, the grotesque underbelly, behold my pale and flabby fabulousness!"  So I did an experiment.

Bet you can't guess what I did....

That's right, I put my arms up.  Simple test right.  Guess what, no mondo  (thanks for that  name Jessica. I'll never forget it.) So what happened?  My shirt did not come up past the button on my jeans!

For some of you, this may be no big deal, but let me tell you the secret of my extrodinarily long torso.  Finding a shirt to fit is nearly impossible,  so I tend to wear men's t shirts....when those ride up over my gut, it makes me sad.  When my favorite t shirts no longer ride high, I feel amazing. 

I decided to unofficially take my measurements.  I'm down at least 1/4 to a half inch in most of the areas, and something like almost 8 inches in my waist.  I swear I must have measured wrong before because I don't feel like I've burned that much fat away, and I'm still really big, but the changes are happening. 

So don't be discouraged by the scale. Remember there are other ways to measure your changes, even if they aren't so concrete.  Remember, the more inches you move, the more inches you lose.  Am I right? 

Wednesday, November 11, 2015

Veterans and Physical Therapy

So, today, I went to my first physical therapy appointment.  I met with the therapist, talked over my case a bit, told her what I'm doing at home and did a few strength tests on my knee.  The only place of weakness was when attempting to come down stairs.  I always feel like it's going to give on me when descending.  I can go up just fine, but all my weight on that one knee is a beast.  Essentiall, she told me I was doing great, keep it up. Then she gave me a sheet of exercises to do daily with my other routine. 
And that was the story of my last day of physical therapy.  I just have to be cleared by my surgeon and do my exercises and I should be done with this whole mess!

Today is also Veterans day.  I wore my old school shirt with the military star and stripes and my old unit cap (which I wear every Veterans Day when I can).  It is nice to see all the support for those who have served and are serving today.  It is a voluntary choice for most of us who do join.  I come from a long line of military, and many of my extended family and friends are or were military, or police, or firefighters, or first responders.  All of those people and their families deserve our thanks today.  I have never been a military spouse, but I can imagine the hardship of trying to keep things together on your own while your other half is out their putting their lives in danger.  Same for police persons and firemen.  These people go to work every day without the guarantee that they will come home safely.  You just never know what's going to happen out there.

So each and every one of the people who have served, are serving, or are considering it, you are my hero.  Thank you for keeping Americans free so that they can be outraged by a cup. 

I kid on that last bit, but I'm serious about thanking you and will continue to thank each person I see in uniform out and about, be they service persons, police, fire, or first responder.  Heroes, each and every one of you.

Monday, November 9, 2015

My New Life....So Far

You guys, I have sooooo much time on my hands.  It's freaking awesome.  Last week I cleaned one room every day.  My house is so clean now.  Then I worked out.  Literally every day I did a work out. I even went for hour long walks.  Why? Because I have time to!!

Basically, I'm liking this stay at home thing.  I have found a few legitimate jobs online as a freelance writer, so I'm testing my chops there.  Maybe I can make a full-time go of it.  Who knows?

I feel like I am much more involved in life now.  I get to actually see my husband daily since I don't work while he is home now.  That is such a nice thing.  When I take the kids to school, I am up early, and able to actually get things accomplished.  I check in at "work" see if there's any thing that interests me and then I work out, clean, work on projects, you know, whatever the hell I want.

I feel as though I'm repeating myself, sorry, I'm excited.

Last week we decided to try to grocery shop more frugally, buy things that we can make last longer so we spend less per month at the store.  I don't think we've mastered it quite yet, but we will get there.  I think our first trip was rather successful (Hubs may think otherwise, he is such a downer sometimes).

I am not sure if I want to look for part-time work locally to fill the hours/help out with the bills or focus on doing what makes me happy.  It's a fine line and it's hard to know where the tipping point is.  I reckon I'll keep on keeping on where I'm at for now and see how it pans out.  I am loathe to make plans because, to be perfectly honest, NOTHING EVER WORKS OUT AS PLANNED!  Ever!

I have physical therapy this week.  Gee, that will be fun.  At least I'll get a good workout in that day, right?  Is that the bright side?  Maybe they have a scale.  I'm not sure if I want to get on it though, because what if I haven't lost any weight?  Despite working my ass off and trying to eat moderately, what if I'm stuck before I ever got going?  Stuff of nightmares, that is.

Since I have so much time, I may try my hand at crochet again.  My brother is making me look bad with his mastery of the art.  Can't have that now, can we?

I promise to try to update more often, but really what you've just read is my life.  I have no real wisdom to impart, just popping in to say that if you follow me, thank you.  Don't give up on me, I'm not giving up on myself.  You should follow suit.  You are a rock star in your own right.


Thursday, November 5, 2015

Absolute Do-Nothing

I've accomplished nothing today.  Not a damn thing.

That's not true, I finished my unemployment enrollment, I guess I've done something.

I had every intention of getting up early today, taking the kids to school, knocking out my workout, running a few errands and cleaning the upstairs bathroom.

I failed.  Hubby took the kids to school, I slept until 11.  Ok, I TRIED to sleep until 11.  It's hard when you can't sleep.  Even my prescribed temazepam didn't do me any good.  I just kept waking up.

It's now 4:30 and I've eaten for the first time today. Don't judge me, I've been super busy doing nothing, remember.  In all actuality, I did start with the errand for unemployment, then I made an attempt to help someone fix their car.  That took hours and proved futile as we got nowhere.  Best of luck to then on their next attempt.  After retrieving the children from the school that I neglected to drop them at, I'm not home, and I sat down.  Why did I sit down?

I really have so much to do.  I need to clean the upstairs bathroom, it must be done, it's part of my home upkeep plan.  If I'm not going to be working I will have a clean house, dammit! 

I also need to write my article.  I'm super interested in the content but I'm having trouble making it sound as though it may be interesting to others.  I mean, I'm a super nerd, soooo.....

I start physical therapy on Wednesday.  From what I hear it's supposed to be brutal.  Not sure I'm ready for that. But if it helps get my knees back where I can use them I'm all for it.  Besides, lots of squats equals a nice ass, right?  And I could stand to lose a little (lottle probably) weight

So this is basically a long boring post just to let yall know I'm still alive and kicking. I really have nothing interesting to write about today.  Sorry, folks, I can't be witty and fun everyday

Sunday, November 1, 2015

Budget, scrimp, save, repeat

Excuse me while I play with my blog setting and such.  I'm having a pretty good time checking out features I didn't know where there.

Anywho, I have spent the last few days trying to figure out if it is at all possible for me to live as a "stay at home mom".  You know, the hardest job in the world!  Ok, but really, I think it may be possible.

I went to the library (hello, free books of all sorts, yes!) and found a book on managing finances, digging out of debt and living a frugal, but fulfilling, life.  Now, you may thing that this book would be EXTREMELY boring, but, you would be wrong.  Surprisingly, it is quite a fun book to read and there are a lot of cool things in it.  It is a little old (2007) but I believe the ideas in there are adaptable.
For those interested, it is called America's Cheapest Family Gets You Right on the Money. It is written by the parents of 5 (yes 5) children who are debt free, living frugally off of cash on a fairly small income, but not missing out on life.  Their name is Economides.  How is that for irony. 

As I was saying, its useful, and I enjoy the read.  It is also written so that you can read from front to back, or only use it as reference for the things that apply to you.  There is a very good chapter about reducing debt.   Let me tell you what, I wrote down all we owed and we have a LOT more debt than I thought.  Then I did a budget (using both of our "current" incomes, in case I am able to return to work; it could happen).   When I budgeted out everything, I found out that we have enough money left over to be able to put almost 200 dollars a month towards eliminating debt. TWO HUNDRED DOLLARS A MONTH.   So why are we so deep in debt?

Well, because we don't pay attention.  We don't.  We fall behind on bills because we simply do not pay much attention.  We should be ahead of the game but we are lagging because we were not paying any attention to our spending trends.   Let me tell you, if you want to know why you are struggling paycheck to paycheck, sit down and evaluate where all you money goes.  It's eye opening.

I don't know if we will be able to carry on with just his income yet, but I know that in time we will get there and I fully believe that in 5 years we can be completely debt free (with the exception of our mortgage, maybe)  Basically, by the time our oldest son is a teenager, 13 years old, we will be out of debt and on our way to being financially free. 

In the process we are afforded a chance to teach our very young children (8 and 6) the value of money and how to save it.  We can show them from an early age how to spend and save properly so that they never end up in this situation.   We can get ahead of them going to college and actually have some money build up for that.  Essentially, we can get them ahead of the game.  That is something I look forward to.  Maybe, just maybe, we actually will be able to retire at some point and take a driving trip around the states.  Wouldn't that be fun.

I have amassed many tips and hints, and I would definitely not mind sharing my ideas and being the recipient of others.  If you are interested in being free and digging yourself out of debt, maybe we can work together to get all of us where we need to be.  I am not going to tell you it will be easy, I expect for the first few months, and around big events like birthdays, it will get a little tight and stressful.  At least at first.  I figure by this time next year we will be well on our way and things will be getting easier each week. 

If you are game, let me know, I'm all over helping everyone out and getting it so that they can actually enjoy their lives and money instead of just throwing it at bills for stuff you bought 3 years ago!!