Wednesday, April 27, 2016

Keeping Up With...Workouts (Recap of 4/13 - 4/26)

About 10 days ago, I went to my second Zumba Jam session of this year.  I love jam sessions & would do on every weekend if I had the time...and the money.  I've explained them before but in a nut shell a group of Zumba Instructors get together and learn 4-5 routines from a Jammer who is licensed by Zumba to teach us the routines.  Such a great way to network, learn new steps and get fresh choreo for classes.  Seriously, I love them!!  The only downside is I'm exhausted after dancing for 3 hours (or 4 if I have teach that same day).

And this one was fantastic!!  Lynn was our jammer and this is the second jam of hers that I have gone to.  She has great choreo that is easy to follow and modify for either more intensity or less.  It's easy for me to learn and remember and it's easy for my students to learn as well while still challenging them.  We learned 5 songs on Saturday and I will probably use 4 of them.  One of them was an African rhythm and just wasn't really for me.  I'm already using the toning song (Confident by Demi Lovato) & the cumbia.  I'm really hoping to practice the tango (my first!) and get it into class in the next week or two.  Lynn comes to Columbus often and she said she hopes to be back in the fall.  I hope so too!!
Our confident pose
That's me in the red leading the other instructors in the cumbia

Since I missed last week, I'll be listing out the past 2 weeks of workouts.  I still had a rough time finding my groove and getting to classes that aren't mine.  Adrian was sick a bulk of the first week so all my free time was taking care of him.  And then last week I was just really tired and worn out from the past month.  I'm hoping to finally find my rhythm soon, although that will change once the boys are out of school for the summer.

Here's what I've been doing:
Wednesday 4/13 - Taught a 90 minute Zumba & Zumba Toning class, Taught half of a 1 hour Zumba class (before I had to run to baseball practice with my boys), Walked back & forth for school pick up
Thursday 4/14 - Rest Day!  Walked back & forth from school two different times
Friday 4/15 - Taught a 1 hour Zumba class, Walked back & forth for school pick up
Saturday 4/16 - Taught a 1 hour Zumba Toning class & did the 3 hour Jam session
Sunday 4/17 - Rest Day!  Practiced Zumba for about 15 minutes
Monday 4/18 - Taught a 1 hour Zumba Toning class, Taught a 1 hour Cardio Dance class, Walked back & forth from school for pick up
Tuesday 4/19 - Taught a 1 hour Silver Sneakers class
Wednesday 4/20 - Taught a 90 minute Zumba & Zumba Toning class, Taught a 1 hour Zumba class
Thursday 4/21 - Taught two 1 hour Zumba classes, Took 30 minutes of a Zumba class with a different instructor, Walked back & forth for school pick up
Friday 4/22 - Taught a 1 hour Zumba class, Took 30 minutes of a Zumba Toning class with a different instructor, Walked back & forth for school pick up
Saturday 4/23 - Taught a 1 hour Zumba Toning class
Sunday 4/24 - Rest Day!  Practiced Zumba & Silver Sneakers for about 20 minutes
Monday 4/25 - Taught a 1 hour Zumba Toning class, Taught a 1 hour Cardio Dance class, Walked back & forth from school for pick up
Tuesday 4/26 - Taught a 1 hour Silver Sneakers class, Walked back & forth for school pick up

All in all it's been a pretty good two weeks.  I've workout out a lot.  I didn't get to as many classes as I would have liked but at least I did some.  I didn't let it stop me that I could only do part of a class, I went anyway.  And it was fun...and hard!  I'm hoping to shake it up with something other than Zumba this weekend. 

Unfortunately the scale didn't show that much progress and I only lost 1 pound over these 2 weeks.  It was a little upsetting last week to see that I maintained and then again this week when I only lost 1 lb.  But I know some of it is fat turning to muscle.  I feel better, smaller & lighter.  Maybe one day I'll see it on the scale!

Tuesday, April 26, 2016

Keeping Up With...Family (Texas Trip Recap Part 1)

This past summer when I realized that my 40th birthday fell on Easter Sunday and was also during the boys' spring break, I decided we needed to go away.  We planned to go to Florida to visit my brother, sister-in-law, nieces & parents.  Then my SIL got transferred to Dallas and we decided to change our destination.  We were all so excited to go somewhere we've never been before!  We planned for months and finally got everything together and hit the road early Thursday before Easter heading Southwest to Dallas!!
We were on the road a lot earlier than we thought and got out ahead of the forecasted rain.  We made great time on Thursday even though we had multiple bathroom stops.  We only had one (kid) potty accident early Thursday and the rest of the trip was smooth sailing.  Our goal was Memphis and we hit that about 6pm so we decided to press on.  We made it all the way to Little Rock on our first day leaving only about 5 hours of driving for Friday.

We did have a funny stop on the road that first day.  AJ told us he needed to use the bathroom.  We found a truck stop using our in car navigation system and headed to it.  When we got there we saw this...
And lots of construction.  Apparently they had knocked down the truck stop and are in the process of building something else.  Thankfully AJ was able to go in this without incidence.  The funniest part was we had just told the boys we would be stopping for dinner soon.  Daniel had headphones on and looked up when we stopped and yells "We're eating dinner here?!?!?!"  It was pretty funny!!

Friday morning we were up and on the road early.  If I'm being honest, we didn't get much sleep that night because our hotel wasn't that great.  We took our chances on a Quality Inn south of Little Rock to save $75.  It wasn't worth it.  We should have stayed closer to downtown or the airport.  But we survived and it did help us get up and out in the morning.

We were heading to Arlington on Friday and got there around lunch time.  We stopped at our (first ever) Jack in the Box for lunch before checking into our amazing suite for the night.  Thanks to my Dad & his Hilton points for that!!  Adrian & I weren't really impressed with Jack in the Box, it was just OK.  The boys loved the clowns all over the place.

After we checked in and got settled for the night we headed to our first stop, Six Flags over Texas.  I think that is how we made such good time.  We kept telling the boys that the quicker we drove the more rides we could ride.  We were all ready to hit our first amusement park for the season!  We had a rocky start because we chose to get in line for "Battle of Metropolis" which is a new ride there.  It broke down several times while we waited and were in line for almost 2 hours.  At least the ride was awesome & the boys LOVED it!
Finally ready to ride!
We spent about seven hours in the park Friday night riding as many rides as we could.  My brother Jon and niece Luci met us there for most of the night.  We had a great time riding everything.  The boys were determined to ride "Aquaman Splashdown" even though it was cold.  We got soaked and were pretty cold but it didn't stop us.  The lines were a little long Friday night since there was a concert that night, but we made the best of it.

Saturday morning the 5 of us headed back to the park.  We did the rest of the rides we wanted to ride, everyone picked one & then we did whatever smaller rides we could on the way.  This included Daniel's first big roller coaster (he finally makes 48 inches).  He and I rode "The New Texas Giant" and he said it was awesome!  We probably would have rode again but the lines were just too long.  He said the best part was the giant drop at the beginning.
We did everything we wanted to do and finished up about 4:00 to head out to my brother's house for the rest of our week in TX.  Before leaving Arlington, we went and drove around Cowboys Stadium.  We had planned to do a tour while we were there but the stadium was closed to tours the entire month of March.  So we had to settle for driving around, taking a few pictures & browsing the Pro Shop.  Next time we go down we will be sure the stadium is open so we can go there!
After that we headed up to my brother's house, about 30 miles north of Dallas.  We had a delicious dinner and spent some time with the family.  We were all pretty tired and headed to bed early.  Plus we had to get ready for the Easter Bunny the next day!!  I think this is a good stopping point.  I'll be back later this week with part 2.

Sunday, April 24, 2016

Keeping Up With...Food (Menu Plan 4/25 - 5/1)

Life has been happening over here!  Everyday I want to do more than I have time for.  I really want to blog about our trip to Dallas but I truly haven't had a single spare minute since we've been home.  And our schedule is crazy right now with lots of extra (but fun) stuff going on.  I'm going to make it a priority to blog about at least one family related thing every week instead of only the menu plan & the workout summary (which I didn't even get to last week, oops!)

OK, on to my food plan for the week.  We got our first CSA veggie bag this past week and I'm so excited to use the veggies.  We got cilantro, red Russian kale, spinach, fennel leaves, swiss chard & green onions.  We currently have a ton of spinach so there will be a lot of that on the menu the next 2 weeks.  First I do have some older produce to use, so you'll see that on the menu as well.  We will get a bag every other week so I'm hoping to use most of this before our next bag.
I also didn't get to make everything I planned last week.  We had a fridge full of leftovers so on Weds I opted not to cook.  Then yesterday Daniel & I had to run to Aldi for garbage bags & he saw that they had pizza & Oreo ice cream cake on sale so he wanted to buy that and "Have a party!"  How could I say no?  Today we are overwhelmed trying to get stuff done so we'll either have leftovers or go out to grab something.  So the first three meals this week are carry overs from last week. 

On the plus side, everyone was healthy ALL week for the first time in probably a month, yay!!  We didn't miss anything during the week or this weekend.  And Adrian is finally hydrated and has his appetite back after almost 10 days of struggling with the stomach bug.  I've had the windows open everyday and hopefully we've killed all the germs and will have a nice long healthy stretch!

Here's what we're eating this week:
Monday - Roasted Chicken with Asian Coleslaw & Corn on the Cob (using the fennel leaves to put inside the chicken & make stock the next day)
Tuesday - Santa Fe Chicken Pasta with Spinach Salad

Wednesday - Slow Cooker Chicken Burritos in tortillas with corn on the cob
Thursday - Tuna Pesto Salad (using our kale for pesto sauce) on Italian bread with corn on the cob
Friday - Kale Soup with a Caesar Salad
Saturday - BBQ with my brother & his family.  I'm making broccoli salad and potato salad to go with hamburgers, hot dogs & brats.  Plus ice cream cake for dessert.
Sunday - Thai Chicken Zoodles

Water Flavor - Strawberry and lemon - One of my favorite combinations.

Food Prep - I am hoping to make the coleslaw for tomorrow night.  And I have my water set up and some fruit cut up for snacks.  Other than that I probably won't do much.  I have the shopping done for Monday - Wednesday and a plan to get to the store for the rest so I'm feeling pretty good.

As always, I'm linking up with Laura at Mommy, Run Fast.  Go check out the other blogs on the link up for some more yummy recipes!  Have a great week!!

Sunday, April 17, 2016

Keeping Up With...Food (Menu Plan 4/18 - 4/24)

This past week pretty much sucked.  It started rough Monday with a puking kid, overnight poop accident with another kid, running super late & not nearly enough prep over the weekend for the week.  I survived Monday and hoped it was just one off day, put that night Adrian started puking and hasn't really stopped since.  He has had a horrible stomach bug and has finally gone about 24 hours keeping something (crackers) down.  He's trying to rest today and refuel his very depleted body so we can get back to normal tomorrow.

Since Adrian didn't eat this week, I wasn't nearly as motivated to cook.  Plus since he couldn't help, I was running all over the place trying to make sure everyone got where they needed to go.  I did cook the 2 slow cooker meals I had planned on last week and those were most of my meals for the week.  And we still have leftovers from that.  Now I'm trying to use up veggies before they go bad.  My meal plan this week is mostly the same as last week with a few additions.

Next week our plan will be a little different.  We joined a local CSA with the YMCA and we get our first bag of vegetables this Thursday.  I'm SO excited to get locally grown veggies, some of which will be new to us.  We will get a bag of veggies every other Thursday thru October so I'll get and then plan meals around using up those veggies.  Pinterest here I come!!

Here's what we're eating this week:
Monday - Farfalle with Zucchini
Tuesday - Taco Tuesday!
Wednesday - Chicken and Peppers over Rice
Thursday - Slow Cooker Chicken Burritos - we'll serve these either in tortillas or over lettuce
Friday - Skillet Spaghetti & Meatballs - I'll cheat on this & use frozen meatballs
Saturday - Roasted Chicken with whatever veggies we still have leftover
Sunday - Santa Fe Chicken Pasta

Water flavor - I honestly hadn't even thought about this until just now.  I will have to go see what I have.  I know I have 1 or 2 grapefruits left from before vacation.  I have gotten out of the habit of eating 1/2 each morning.  I will either use these for water or eat them this week.  If not grapefruit, I may do strawberries & apples.

Food Prep - I also haven't thought about this.  I have a melon to cut up and rice krispy treats to make for snack for my kids.  Other than that I just want to get our house back in order and hope this week is smoother than last.  I also have all of my grocery shopping done so that frees up some time this week as well.
I made this last week for AJ's birthday celebration in school.  They all keep asking for more.

As always, I'm linking up with Laura at Mommy, Run Fast.  Go check out the other blogs on the link up for some more yummy recipes!  Have a great week!!

Thursday, April 14, 2016

Keeping Up With...Workouts (Recap of 4/6 - 4/12)

I'm a day late on this recap.  We have been hit with sickness, no sleep and real life over here.  But I have managed to keep my workout streak going.  I really wanted to try to get to a different class last week but it just didn't happen.  I was exhausted most of the week and had multiple extra things to deal with. 

We're still dealing with sickness, I can't shake this head cold & Adrian has a stomach bug, so even this week I've been unable to do anything other than teach my classes.  Actually I'm not even teaching all of those, but I'll save that for next week.  I'm also going to my second Zumba jam of this year this Saturday, just got the play list and I'm so excited!!

I'm keeping this very short this week because there hasn't been a lot going on.  Plus I need to get the boys started on homework so they can finish up before we head up to Daniel's school for a special family event with Pete the Cat.

Here's what I did this past week:
Wednesday - Taught a Zumba class.  I had to get a sub for my morning class because AJ was home sick with a horrible head cold (that he passed to me)
Thursday - Taught a Zumba class
Friday - Taught a Zumba class
Saturday - Taught a Zumba Toning class
Sunday - I had planned to do Body Pump but got no sleep so I decided to sleep in and just practice Zumba for about 20 minutes instead
Monday - Taught 2 Zumba classes, Toning in the morning & Zumba at night
Tuesday - Taught Silver Sneakers for one hour (it went awesome!!) & walked back and forth from school

I weighed in yesterday for the first time since vacation and I lost 3 lbs from then, yay!!  I'm up to 8 lbs lost for the year, a little behind where I should be but hopefully I'll still hit my goal of 40 lbs for the year.  I'm determined to lose right now so I'm holding on to that for dear life!!

Sunday, April 10, 2016

Keeping Up With...Food (Menu Plan 4/11 - 4/17)

After a three week break I'm back to meal planning.  I actually did plan our meals for last week but I didn't get a chance to do a blog post about them.  We got back very late last Saturday night and have spent the past week in a vacation hangover/head cold fog.  Since it's freezing here (literally!) all practices have been cancelled so we're spending the day catching up, relaxing and prepping for the week ahead.  I'm really hoping to be back to our regular schedule this week!

Even though I didn't share our menu last week, I have to share a few of our meals because we had a pretty great week of eats.  I'm trying to focus on variety and healthy eating right now, as well as simple meals since we are very busy.  I made these awesome pork chops and we had them over couscous one night (and a few lunches).  We also really enjoyed these buffalo chicken & broccoli bowls, although I think next time I wouldn't use a whole head of cauliflower.  It kind of overwhelmed the buffalo flavor.s
This week we have something every night and a busy weekend.  I'll be buying stuff to make pasta and/or Reubens as a stand by if (read: when) things don't go according to plan.  Here's what we're planning on eating:
Monday - Slow Cooker Fish Chowder
Tuesday - Santa Fe Chicken Pasta
Wednesday - Pulled Pork Tostadas with Lime Cumin Slaw
Thursday - Farfalle with Zucchini
Friday - Skillet Spaghetti & Meatballs - I'll cheat on this & use frozen meatballs
Saturday - Slow Cooker Chicken Burritos - we'll serve these either in tortillas or over lettuce
Sunday - BBQ with my brother, sister in law & niece.  We're going to attempt to BBQ since it's supposed to be nice.  We'll do hamburgers, hot dogs, brats & some sides.

Water flavor - Apple/Orange.  I went to an event at the Y on Friday & they had these in 2 separate infusers.  I tried them both & loved them, then mixed them together - yum!

Food prep - I set up my water already & am thawing everything for tomorrow's dinner.  I'm hoping to prep some of the stuff for tomorrow's dinner later tonight.

As always, I'm linking up with Laura at Mommy, Run Fast.  Go check out the other blogs on the link up for some more yummy recipes!  Have a great week!!

Thursday, April 7, 2016

Keeping Up With...My Fab 40! - March review

March was a pretty good month and saw a few of the one time things getting moved into the (new) done category.  It was also an exhausting month between vacation and more colds (seriously - how many germs can we get???)  I'm hoping for calm for the next few weeks before our busy May and then 3 months of summer vacation with the boys.

Here's how I'm doing after 3 months.  I have broken them down into three categories (on-going, one time and finished) so it's easier for me to update.  The goals are in black and my current month comments are in red.

1.  Lose 40 pounds - one for each year - Lost 6 of the 40 lbs.  I stayed stalled this month.  I had a really hard time getting back on the healthy eating bandwagon.  I'm behind where I should be since the year is 1/4 over.  I'm hoping for a big loss in April to make up for it!
2.  Read 12 books - I was so close last year! - Read 4 of the 12.  I finished 2 books this month, Shopaholic to the Stars & The Tale of Despereaux.  I put Little Women on hold, it was just not capturing my attention.  I'm also about 1/4 of the way through a new book.
3.  Go on 12 dates with Adrian - Went on 6 of the 12 - We got 3 dates in March!  We went to see Beauty & the Beast here in Columbus, then went out to lunch and dinner in Texas.  Fun month!
4.  Get rid of 12 bags of stuff - Donated 1 bag this month from our closets.  4 of the 12 are gone.
5.  Take 1 picture every day for the year - Up to date on this 97 of 366
6.  Go on 2 special dates with AJ - Went on 0 out of 2.  I'm taking him and Daniel to Snoopy this weekend.  Not sure whose date that will count for, maybe both.  Still thinking about Kung Fu Panda 3.
7.  Go on 2 special dates with Daniel -
Went on 0 out of 2.  See above
8.  Go on 2 special dates with Zak - Went on 0 out of 2, I'll be saving these for the 2nd half of the year when he's in preschool everyday.
 9.  Do a 365 day exercise streak - 88 days of 365, every day from Jan 11-April 6!!  This was really tough a few days over vacation.  I started doing a recap each week so check in on Weds for more info on this.
10.  Finish the 30 Day Shred - Did 0 days of 30 - I need to get started on this one!
11.  Attend one class each week that isn't mine - Did this 9 weeks out of 52.  I missed the last two weeks of March because of a sick Zak and vacation.  I'm back to this in April, hoping to do more than one class each week. 
12.  Teach an average of 5 classes each week -
Did this 10 weeks out of 52.  I only taught 1 class in the last 2 weeks of March between Zak being sick for 3 days and us being on vacation.  I'm OK with this, I knew it would be impossible to teach the weeks we are out of town.
13.  Menu plan and prep our dinners each week - Did this 10 weeks out of 52.  I took off the past 3 weeks since we were eating leftovers, on vacation and recovering from vacation.  I will be back to it this weekend.
14.  Go to church every Sunday - Did this 11 weeks out of 52.  I missed 2 weeks in March, one because of sick kids and one because of vacation.  Getting back into this habit this week.
15.  Do one blog post each week - I did 8 posts in March, easily one per week. 
16.  See 2 movies that aren't animated - Saw 0 out of 2
17.  Pay off our Best Buy card and not incur any new debt - I just set up for the final payment on our Best Buy card to be sent in April!!  Still on the path of not incurring any new debt.
18.  Have a family board game night once per month - Did this 3 out of 12 months, although March was a little different.  We didn't play together, but I played multiple board games with each kid.
19.  Have a family movie night once per month
- Did this 3 out of 12 months (Inside Out, Charlie Brown Valentine's special, Justice League Frost Fight)
20.  Have a family video game night once per month - Did this 3 out of 12 months and technically already did April's because we played my new WiiU Mario game this past weekend
21.  Go to 4 Zumba jams this year - Went to my 1 out of 4 and I loved every minute of it!  I'm signed up for jam #2 next weekend - can't wait!
22.  Make one homemade breakfast for us each month - I made 1 (breakfast casserole pie
) in March which we ate for both breakfast & leftovers for lunch

One Time
23.  Go on a family trip to NJ - Booked for June!!
24.  Go on a family trip to Tennessee - Planned for July
25.  Go zip lining
26.  Go on a family hike in Hocking Hills
27.  Go on family camping trip
28.  Host an alcohol exchange with my girl friends
29.  Power wash and stain our play set
30.  Renovate our downstairs bathroom
31.  Conquer the Lynd's corn maze in the fall
32.  Go to Dollywood - Planned for Aug
33.  Go to Six Flags Great Adventure - Planned for June
34.  Renew our Zoombeezi Bay passes and go at least once every other week over the summer
35.  Do something special to celebrate mine & Adrian's 10 year wedding anniversary

36.  Go on a family trip to Dallas - Done!  Will start recapping this weekend 
37.  Get 1 fitness certification - Done!!  Got Silver Sneakers Classic & Silver Sneakers Circuit in March.  Also signed up for Zumba Gold in May.  Going above & beyond on this goal.
38.  Go to the doctor for routine check up and tests - Done!  Did my physical, pap, blood work & mammogram in March.  Everything looks great, I'm supposed to keep doing what I'm doing!
39.  Tour Dallas Cowboys stadium - Done, sort of.  It was actually closed for the guided tours while we were there.  But we drove around it, took some pictures & went in the Pro Shop.  I'm considering it done.
40.  Go to Six Flags Over Texas - Done!  Also hit Six Flags St Louis, loved that park

What a great month March was!!  I moved 5 things to the done list, kept up with all of the ongoing goals and had a great time on vacation number one with my family.  I also could have checked off things like:  tour the Ross Perot Science & Nature Museum, ride a mechanical bull and see a cow parade.  I also officially turned 40 and it feels great!!  I don't feel old or over the hill, I feel ready to face this new decade!

Wednesday, April 6, 2016

Keeping Up With...Workouts (Recap of 3/30 - 4/5)

We are back from our vacation in Texas and struggling to find our groove to get back to normal life.  I'm hoping today is a little better than the past two days have been.  I have multiple blog posts to get up including an update on my 40 goals for the year & a full recap of our trip to Texas.  And I'll get back to menu planning this weekend as well.  But the rest of this week is pretty much survival mode, then I'll catch up and get to some of that fun stuff this weekend.

Last week I shared how I was fairing with keeping up my exercise streak while on vacation.  This week was more of the same.  I again struggled with getting exercise in on the day we drove all day (Friday) and then again on Sunday when we got home because I was exhausted.  I'm still exhausted but now I've got classes to teach so I don't have a choice.

Now that I'm back from vacation I have a 2 month stretch before we go away again so hopefully I'll have an easy time keeping up this streak.  I teach Mon-Sat so those days aren't a problem, I'll just have to figure out something for Sunday.  I also need to step up my game about going to other people's classes.  I have 2-4 really good opportunities each week so I need to do a better job of taking advantage of those.

Here's what I did last week:
Wednesday - Walked around the neighborhood with my Mom & niece for about 20 minutes
Thursday - Walked around Legoland Discovery Center & Grapevine Mall for about 2 hours & walked around the neighborhood with Adrian, my brother & sister in law for about 15 minutes
Friday - Did 10 minutes on the elliptical at our hotel after driving all day
Saturday - Walked around Six Flags for about 5 hours
Sunday - Practiced Zumba for about 15 minutes
Monday - Taught 2 classes - Zumba Toning & Cardio Dance
Tuesday - Taught my first Silver Sneakers class (more on that next week) & walked back and forth from school to pick up Daniel

I'm very proud of myself for sticking with this exercise challenge over vacation.  It was hard at some points to get motivated to do something but I know it was worth it.  I didn't weigh in this morning, I'm sure I'm up a few pounds with all of the delicious food I ate.  I got back on track with my eating on Monday even though it was hard because I had very little in the house.  I'm already feeling less blotted and like I have more energy after only 48 hours.  I'll wait until next week to check the scale.
My thrown together in the car, on the go salad for lunch on Monday