Monday, August 29, 2016

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

July was another fantastic month here enjoying summer break!  As you can see I have been enjoying life so much I'm very late with this review.  I almost didn't do one for July, just skipped to Aug, but decided to go ahead and do 2 updates in 2 weeks.  We have done a ton of fun things this summer.  You can skim around the blog to read my recaps for the month if you're interested in reading more about that.  I didn't focus a whole lot on my goals though in July, but that's OK.  Part of this was just to challenge myself to do fun things that I wouldn't normally do in my day to day life and I have done that this summer.

Here's how I'm doing after 7 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 11 of the 40 lbs.  I was actually up at the end of July.  I'm not sure by how much since I was on vacation and didn't weigh in the last Weds on July.  But I know I was up.
2.  Read 12 books - I was so close last year! - Read 9 of the 12.  I finished 2 books this month, "Becoming Marta" and "Are You There God, It's Me Margaret?"  I started on this list of 50 books this month and am excited to read them all.  "Becoming Marta" was an OK book.  It was one I got for free from Amazon.  It was a quick read with a pretty good story, but it dragged in some parts.  It could have been a great short story.  "Are You There God, It's Me Margaret?" is one of my favorites!  I loved rereading this classic from my childhood!
3.  Go on 12 dates with Adrian - Went on 11 of the 12.  We had one date night in July while the boys were at VBS.  We went shopping for a few things we needed for our TN trip and started on back to school shopping for the boys, including their new sneakers.  We also treated ourselves to fruit smoothies from Dunkin' Donuts because it was SO hot!
4.  Get rid of 12 bags of stuff - I got rid of 1 bag of clothes this month.  Where are all of these clothes coming from??  9 of the 12 bags are gone.
5.  Take 1 picture every day for the year - Up to date on this 213 of 366.  You can see them here.
6.  Go on 2 special dates with AJ - Went on 1 out of 2.  I took AJ & Daniel to see Snoopy: The Musical at the local children's theater in April.  We had so much fun!  We stopped at Krispy Kreme for donuts on our way home too.  I'm counting this for both boys & may aim for 3 dates each, another together & one alone.
7.  Go on 2 special dates with Daniel -
Went on 1 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 - 83 days of 365 for take 2 at this streak.  So far I've exercised every day from May 10th through July 31st.
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 12 weeks out of 52.  I didn't get to any classes that I didn't teach in July.  I pretty much only taught my classes, went swimming or walking this month.  I was trying to minimize the time the kids were in childcare.
12.  Teach an average of 5 classes each week -
Did this 25 weeks out of 52.  I did it every week in July.  It was a busy month but I kept up with all of my classes.
13.  Menu plan and prep our dinners each week - Did this 24 weeks out of 52.  I planned every week this month.  Granted the last week was a lot of leftovers, but I also used up all of the veggies I needed to before we left for vacation.  I think this is the best planning of using up my food before vacation that I have ever done.
14.  Go to church every Sunday - Did this 21 weeks out of 52.  I missed 1 week in July because of vacation.  I have also started volunteering in childcare every other month.  July was my first full month in the classes.  I had a blast!
15.  Do one blog post each week - I did 15 posts in July, easily one per week.  I hope you're enjoying all of my posts! 
16.  Pay off our Best Buy card and not incur any new debt - The Best Buy card is payed off!!  We bought the new car so that counts as new debt and we invested in a costly (not insurance covered) therapy for AJ so that also created some new debt.  We have a plan for paying the therapy off and I feel good about where we are.
17.  Have a family board game night once per month - Did this 7 out of 12 months
18.  Have a family movie night once per month
- Did this 7 out of 12 months (Inside Out, Charlie Brown Valentine's special, Justice League Frost Fight, Big Hero 6, Star Wars, Avengers, Pokemon movie)
19.  Have a family video game night once per month - Did this 7 out of 12 months
20.  Go to 4 Zumba jams this year - Went to my 2 out of 4 and I loved every minute of it! 
21.  Make one homemade breakfast for us each month - I did not do this again in July.  I'm slacking on this goal, probably because we're so rarely home for breakfast.

One Time

22.  Go zip lining
23.  Go on a family hike in Hocking Hills
24.  Host an alcohol exchange with my girl friends
25.  Power wash and stain our play set
26.  Renovate our downstairs bathroom
27.  Conquer the Lynd's corn maze in the fall

28.  Renew our Zoombeezi Bay passes and go at least once every other week over the summer - I renewed our passes this summer and we went one time so far this summer.  There are about 12 weeks in our summer break so my goal is to go 6 times.


29.  Go to Dollywood - We will not be doing this one.  We decided between the heat, the cost and the fact that there was more than enough to do in TN we would not invest in this on our recent trip to TN.  It will stay on the bucket list for another year.   
30.  Go on a family trip to Tennessee - Done!!
31.  See 2 movies that aren't animated - Done!!  I've actually seen 3 - "Star Wars:  The Force Awakens," "Ant Man" & "Avengers:  Age of Ultron" 
32.  Go on family camping trip - Done!  NJ was a camping trip and we survived 8 nights in the tent.  Not sure if we'll get to do another one or not this fall, will have to see how our schedule pans out.
33.  Go on a family trip to NJ - Done!!  You can read part 1 and part 2 of the recap and part 3 should be up this week.  Spoiler Alert - It was an amazing week, we had a blast!! 
34.  Go to Six Flags Great Adventure - Done!  I rode El Toro & The Joker, I was a happy ride warrior. 
35.  Do something special to celebrate mine & Adrian's 10 year wedding anniversary - We bought a new car.  :)  We also had a very nice date night where we bought new dishes and went back to Carrabba's, the restaurant we went to for our first date.  We were hoping to do something a little bigger, but 3 vacations & a new car in the same year seems like enough.
36.  Go on a family trip to Dallas - Done!  You can read about it here, here, here and here.
37.  Get 1 fitness certification - Done!!  Got Silver Sneakers Classic & Silver Sneakers Circuit in March.  Also got 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

All in all July was a pretty good month.  I kept up with a lot of my on-going goals and finished a few of the one time ones as well.  I'm hoping to pick up some momentum when everyone goes back to school next month and finish out the year strong! 

Sunday, August 28, 2016

Keeping Up With...Food (Menu Plan 8/29 - 9/4)

It's been a busy weekend over here and I'm just popping in really quick to share my food plan for the week.  Some of the meals are carry overs from last week because I just didn't get to make them this week.  Thursday night I didn't plan well and didn't have time to make the pesto pasta dish I had planned.  So we had tortellini alfredo.  Then Saturday and Sunday I didn't feel like cooking so we used some coupons and grabbed dinner out both nights.  Yesterday I did great staying under my calorie goal for the day, today not so much.  But hopefully being way under every other day this week will help me still see a loss on Weds.

I'm still trying to use up tomatoes and zucchini from last week's CSA bag so you'll see a lot of that this week.  Our pick up day is changing to Friday so I won't know until that afternoon what I'll have for the next two weeks.  I'm assuming more tomatoes and squash.  I'm hoping no more basil as I have a ton of pesto sauce frozen.  I am not using it up quickly enough!

Here's what we're eating this week:
Monday - BBQ Chuck Roast with Celery Salad
Tuesday - Baked Pork Chops with Carrots & Cranberries
Wednesday - Baked Pesto Rigatoni with Salads
Thursday - Taco Thursday! (has to be pushed from Tues to use up what we should have eaten this weekend)
Friday - BLT's & Homemade Tomato Soup
Saturday - Pork Chops in Mushroom Soup & Pierogies
Sunday - Crispy Parmesan Chicken & Zucchini

Water Flavor - Lemon & Apple

Food Prep - I have the celery salad made and the roast ready to throw in the crock pot in the morning.  I also have the pesto made for Wednesday.  And I have a bunch of fruit ready to go for snacks.  I also have reviewed the lunch menu from school with my boys and decided which days they will buy and which days they will pack their lunches.  This saves us from trying to decide each morning.

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!!

Saturday, August 27, 2016

Keeping Up With...Family (Weekly Wrap 8/19 - 8/25)

Friday (8/19) Zak and I dropped the older boys off to school and then we had a date day!  We headed to Zoombeezi Bay for the last weekday that they are open for this season.  We spent about 3 hours there between Tiny Tides (the kids area), the Lazy River and the wave pool.  We had a lot of fun there together!!  Then we had to race home to pick the older boys up from school, get everyone dinner and head back out to baseball practice.  I was so tired after that (plus PiYo & Zumba at the gym) I was asleep by 10:30!

Saturday (8/20) we decided to head out to Utica to continue our family tradition of picking apples and peaches at Legend Hills Orchard.  We picked two pecks of peaches and one bag of Gala apples.  We also enjoyed a few in the field.  Then we headed up the road to Ye Old Mill Inn for some Velvet ice cream.  Daniel & Zak enjoyed chocolate while the rest of us got the Buckeye Classic.  It was SO good!  We played at their playground for a little bit before heading home.  Very fun family day in Utica!

Sunday (8/21) was a crazy busy day, not how we like to spend our Sundays.  We went to church in the morning then I stayed for second service to volunteer in childcare.  After that Adrian took the boys to start in their new session of swimming lessons at the Y.  They did a great job, and both of them jumped off the high board finally!  I skipped swimming to stay home and get a few things done before I headed to the Y for Dance Mania and then a group fitness meeting.  It was a crazy day, but thankfully we still managed to get some of our stuff done & get ready for a busy week.

Monday (8/22) was the start to a more structured schedule for us.  Zak and I dropped the big boys off at school and headed out for our usual Mon stops - Aldi & the gym.  We also had a fun play date in the afternoon for him and one of his friends.  Finally, in the evening Adrian took Zak to meet his preschool teacher for this year.  He is very excited to start school on Weds!!  I took AJ & Daniel with me to the gym & they enjoyed some (rare) video game time while I taught.

Tuesday (8/23) was Zak's last day off before starting preschool.  I was planning to go to the gym and run a few errands but he really wanted to stay home and watch video games so that is what we did.  I got a bunch of stuff done around the house while he watched TV.  AJ and Daniel also had dentist appointments in the afternoon.  They are both cavity free although Daniel had a lot of tartar build up.  They gave us "tooth timers" to make sure we are brushing long enough (we probably we not).

Wednesday (8/24) was Zak's first day of preschool!!  He was a little hesitant this morning, but he did great.  I successfully got everyone to school ontime and celebrated with a solo trip to Meijer!!  I also had an interview at a new gym teaching Silver Sneakers.  When I picked Zak up I could see he was exhausted.  So we mostly relaxed the rest of the day.  AJ and Daniel continue to have great days at school!  They are loving only having reading as nightly homework.  Tonight they had baseball practice which they just got in before it started raining.  They're excited to start games this weekend!
Thursday (8/25) started with a change in schedule when we got a call (well, text) that Zak's school was closed for the day due to the power being out at church.  There were bad storms over night (which I slept thru!) which knocked out the power.  Zak was bummed not to have school, as were the other boys who were bummed that their school didn't have a power outage.  So Zak enjoyed some extra time with me running errands and going to the gym.

Wednesday, August 24, 2016

Keeping Up With...Family (Weekly Wrap 8/26 - 9/1)

Friday (8/26) all three boys were back to school!  I once again got everyone to school ontime, it hasn't been as bad as I thought it would be.  I'm sure there will be days we struggle but for now I'm enjoying the ease we seem to be having.  Since I teach late on Fri mornings, my friend picks up Zak & her son and they have a short play date on Fridays (and she and I get to catch up!)  In the evening the boys had their last baseball practice before their first game which was crazy hot!  But they didn't complain at all, only us moms sitting, watching & sweating complained.

We ended the day with Adrian & I going downtown to see "Wicked" again.  The boys were thrilled to see their sitters again since it had been a while, possibly all summer!  And Adrian & I had a great night out.  We've seen the show before but it is worth seeing again (and again and again).  Live theater is such an amazing thing.  Even though I was exhausted & still sweaty from baseball practice, I was transported to their world for 3 magical hours.  I love Broadway shows & am so thankful we have so many come through Columbus!
Saturday (8/27) was AJ and Daniel's first baseball games of the season.  They will be playing double headers for the next four Saturdays.  It was a hot one today but they managed to win both games, 7-3 and 12-4.  AJ got a bunch of hits in both games and scored 2 runs.  Daniel made contact and fouled a bunch of balls off, now he just needs to work on straightening his swing out.   They went straight from baseball to their friends' house to play.  Since it was so hot, Zak enjoyed some extra time inside watching video games and playing board games.
Sunday (8/28) was another busier than we like Sunday.  I volunteered at church then had a volunteer meeting after that.  Adrian took the 3 boys to swimming lessons.  We all didn't get back until around 2:00.  The rest of the day we spent trying to get stuff done around the house and get ready for the week.  We all did sleep in this morning which was fantastic!  And we ordered Jets pizza to celebrate a good start to our school year.

Monday (8/29) was back to the grind.  I got everyone to school on time again, yay!  I know this may seem mundane, but I have to drop Zak off to preschool by 8:45 and then the older boys to school by 8:50.  I'm impressed I'm able to get them all there on time!  After school Zak and I headed over to his friend's house so he could play and I could help with some PTO stuff.  Then we picked up AJ & Daniel and headed to the chiropractor and for hair cuts.  It was a full day!!

Tuesday (8/30) started rough because Adrian stayed home to have our cable hooked back up.  Zak would not leave for school because he wanted to "be with Daddy."  It was a nightmare.  But I successfully got him to school (on time) and was free to go about my morning.  The funny part of the story is we still don't have cable.  Because Time Warner could not deliver what they said they could for the price they quoted us.  So we're still a no cable family.  The rest of the day I just felt off all day, probably because it was such a rough morning.  And I'm still struggling to find my groove since getting back from vacation nearly a month ago.

Wednesday (8/31) I was able to go into school to volunteer and help with picture day.  It was so cute to see all the kindergarteners taking their pictures.  The only downside was the fire drill, right before I needed to leave for preschool pickup!  Thankfully it all worked out I was able to get to pick up on time.  Daniel had his picture day today and said that even though it was after lunch and he had pizza sauce on his shorts, his picture will look nice because his shorts aren't in the picture.  Other than that, it was a typical day.  The boys were supposed to have baseball but it got rained out so we got some bonus relaxing time at home.
Thursday (9/1) was another typical day here at the Jones house.  It was AJ's picture day and he was ready to smile nice for the camera.  We also had a progress meeting at Brain Balance Centers for AJ and they said he is progressing along nicely.  He has made progress in all areas so we are supposed to keep doing what we are doing.

Keeping Up With...Workouts (Recap of 8/17 - 8/23)

Brace yourselves, I did other exercise that is NOT teaching my Zumba classes.  As a matter of fact, I took a class that wasn't Zumba.  Can you believe it??  It's amazing what I can do with a schedule and only one kid.  I have multiple classes that fit into my schedule now and I plan to go to all of them.  And I am SO excited to do it!!

The class I made it to this week is called PiYo.  It's a Beachbody class that is a combination of pilates and yoga.  But it's not just stretching and strengthening, it's also cardio.  They move from one pose to the next very quickly.  I really enjoyed it and definitely felt it this weekend.  The class I went to focused on legs and my legs were SORE Fri night and all day Sat!!  I plan to go back most weeks as I think it's a good compliment to the Zumba class I teach right after it.

In addition to going to another class, I also spent Sunday afternoon at Dance Mania at the Y dancing with all of the other super talented Zumba instructors who teach there.  We danced for over two hours.  It was a really fun party!  We had about 50 people come to dance with us.  I led two songs, my new favorite cumbia and the old class favorite "Country Girl."  I had a great time!!

Here's what I did this week:
Wednesday - Taught a one hour Zumba class and walked back & forth from school for pick up
Thursday - Taught a one hour Zumba class, a one hour Zumba Gold class and a one hour Zumba Toning class, plus I walked back & forth from school for pick up
Friday - Did 30 minutes of PiYo class, taught a one hour Zumba class, went to Zoombeezi Bay with Zak for 2 hours (we walked the lazy river 5-6 times!!)
Saturday - Taught 2 one hour Zumba classes and went fruit picking with the family
Sunday - Danced for two hours at Dance Mania
Monday - Taught a one hour Zumba Toning class and a 45 minute Zumba class
Tuesday - I planned to go to Muscle Conditioning but it was Zak's last day before school started and he wanted to stay home so I let him.  I walked around my kitchen/living room for 10 minutes to keep my streak alive.  I probably needed the rest day anyway.

All in all it was a great week.  I'm really proud that I did two things that weren't teaching.  I'm excited to do more in the next few weeks.  I'm also excited to report that after a disappointing week last week, I saw a huge loss this week on the scale - 5 pounds!!  That brings me back to my pre-vacation weight.  My goal was to maintain all summer and I'm going to call that a success!  Now on to losing a bit before I try to maintain thru the holidays.

Tuesday, August 23, 2016

Keeping Up With...Family (Weekly Wrap 7/29 - 8/4 - Part 2)

If you missed part one of our TN vacation, you can read it here.  The post got too long so I decided to split it up into two parts.  I also knew this one would have a lot of pictures.

Wednesday (8/3) all of us headed to Ober Gatlinburg.  We started by taking the aerial tramway up the mountain.  It was really crowded on the ride up so I didn't really get to see much.  I did enjoy hearing about some of the houses on the mountain, including the Barbie house which is the same layout as the Barbie Dream House.  Once we got to the top of the mountain, we bought wrist bands and we off to enjoy!

The boys, Adrian and I enjoyed the maze (3 times), the water slides (too many times to count), the mini golf, the swings and the play area.  It was nice to just have the wrist bands on and not have to worry about anything.  We also rode the ski lift about half way up the mountain (Zak didn't do this) and then did the alpine slide down.  It was super fun!  Daniel was nervous to go by himself but he did great.  My brother Jon and niece Luci also joined us.

It was a great day up on the mountain, but it was hot!!  So after some funnel cake and a pretzel we headed back down in the aerial tramway.  But not before Zak pitched a fit of epic proportions.  It wasn't pretty.  Somehow I got him on the tram and right up to a window.  He and I enjoyed the trip down looking at everything.  The other side of the tram got to see some black bears but we didn't see them.

After the mountain we were all pretty wiped out so we just had dinner together and then played some board games.  We also enjoyed sno cones!  Real ones for the kids, sangria ones for the adults - yummy.  It was a really fun day!!  Here is a photo dump of some of the highlights.

Thursday (8/4) we headed into Gatlinburg with my parents and Uncle Tom.  We decided to take the trolley in because Zak was really interested in riding on it.  We walked around the main street, went into a bunch of shops, tasted a bunch of things including wine and moonshine.  The moonshine tasting was really fun!!  Then the five of us split off from the others so we could go play some mini golf and check out the Hollywood Cars museum.  It was another really fun day that is probably better shown in pictures, so once again a photo dump.

That about wraps up this weekly wrap.  I was thinking about adding Friday on to this one, but I think this is long enough.  I'll do the next weekly wrap soon.  I'm a little behind but am working on catching up, hopefully this weekend.

Sunday, August 21, 2016

Keeping Up With...Food (Menu Plan 8/22 - 8/28)

I did pretty well following my meal plan from last week.  I had to switch a few things around and I forgot to buy sauerkraut so today is leftovers instead of rubens (which will be on this week's menu instead).  We got three days of school under our belts with minimal problems.  We were also helped by some rainy nights so baseball & golf were cancelled.  It was nice to have some extra time to breath.

I got an awesome bag of veggies from my CSA on Thursday so that is what most of my meals this week will center around.  We got a ton of tomatoes which I'll be using throughout the week and also making into sauce to freeze and use in the future.  I also got more basil so I'll be making more pesto.  And I got a bunch of squash which I know will keep so I'm not worrying about them too much this week.  I'm excited to use them all though!

We also spent yesterday picking peaches and apples from a local orchard so those will be my primary snacks for the next few weeks.  It's nice to have a stockpile of them since some of the summer fruits will be disappearing (or getting too expensive) soon.  We will pick apples again next month when more varieties are ready to pick.  And I may cook with the peaches in a few weeks as they start to ripen and then rot.

Here's what we're eating this week:
Monday - BLT Eggs with English Muffins & Fruit
Tuesday - Turnip & Potato Soup with Caesar Salads
Wednesday - Turkey Rubens and Corn on the Cob
Thursday - Baked Pesto Rigatoni with Salads
Friday - Hummus Crusted Chicken with String Beans
Saturday - BBQ Chuck Roast with Veggies
Sunday - Baked Pork Chops with Carrots & Cranberries

Water Flavor - Apple & Orange - I found 2 sorry looking apples & 1 orange so I'm going to put them out of their misery in my water this week

Food Prep - Not doing much this weekend.  I'm going to be out most of the day Sunday so I'll just be winging it most of the week.  I will be making the homemade pesto & some homemade red sauce either Monday or Tuesday this week.  I will freeze most of it to use in the next few weeks.  We have two melons to cut up as well, one of us will do that later today.

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!!

Saturday, August 20, 2016

Keeping Up With...Family (Weekly Wrap 8/12 - 8/18)

Friday (8/12) started out very rough.  We were late leaving the house, forgot multiple things (including AJ's crocs) and no one wanted to do anything.  Compounding this rough start was the heat, it felt like over 100 degrees and was very humid!  We had planned to go to the pool with friends but decided to spend most of the day inside playing and catching up on some stuff.  In the evening we had another baseball practice which was hot!!  But the boys were troopers and they did great.  Their coach is really working with both of them on improving their hitting this season.  We're all excited to get back into baseball!
Saturday (8/13) & Sunday (8/14) were what I call a "work weekend."  We had a bunch of stuff to do to catch up on stuff from vacation, get ready for school and fall sports and just our normal weekly and monthly upkeep.  Adrian & I pretty much worked all weekend while the kids entertained themselves by watching the Olympics, playing with cars & playing video games.  We did have a family movie night on Saturday to watch "Back to the Future" together.  And Daniel also got to go to a birthday party for a friend.  Not the most fun weekend but definitely needed!

Monday (8/15) was our unofficial last day of summer vacation.  I had planned to do Zoombeezi Bay with the boys but the weather was not good.  We decided to run some fun errands instead.  We headed to Easton to get our free books from Barnes & Noble for their summer reading program.  Then we went to Sbarro for lunch (coupon from the library summer reading program) and Cheryl's cookies for dessert (another coupon).  Then we headed over to Half Price books to get more books from their summer reading program.  It wasn't the super fun day I had planned but we made the most of a rainy dreary day!

Tuesday (8/16) was the official last day of summer vacation for us and it was spent getting to appointments.  AJ had a GI doctor and a chiropractor appointment in the morning.  Then in the afternoon we headed to school to meet AJ's and Daniel's teachers for this school year.  I also volunteered for the PTO during the event.  And that evening AJ had another appointment at Brain Balance.  In between all of that, we got ready for our first day of school, enjoyed extra screen time and had tacos for dinner!

Wednesday (8/17) was the first day of school for AJ & Daniel!!  They were so excited to get up and out this morning.  They both have great teachers this year and I know it will be an awesome year.  They had a great first day including pizza for lunch, art for Daniel, gym for AJ and both have friends they know in their class.  Zak and I spent the day hanging around the house playing, watching TV and trying to get caught up and get a handle on things.  He also had a play date with a friend this morning so I could go into school to help out.

Thursday (8/18) Zak had another play date at his friend's house in the morning so I could help in the school again.  It was so cute to see the kindergarteners coming to school for their first day.  I only saw a few in tears, not too bad.  I'm so thankful I am able to help out and that I have friends who will help with Zak!  After that Zak and I were going to do something fun, but it was raining so we decided to just come home and try to get control of the crazy that is our house currently.  It didn't go great, but we're getting there!  Hopefully in the next 2 weeks we will find our routine and I will catch up and stay caught up...until the next disaster!

Wednesday, August 17, 2016

Keeping Up With...Workouts (Recap of 7/27 - 8/16)

It's been a while since I did a workout recap between vacation and school starting.  Things are kind of crazy over here but I wanted to get back in the habit of doing these recaps.  I also felt like I needed to do a post today because I hit 100 days of exercising!!  I'm very excited to hit this milestone (again)!  I'm very close to hitting my first goal of beating my last streak of 112 days and I think it's very much in my reach.  We are back to school now so I have the possibility of walking each day.  I am teaching almost every day and I have lots of flexibility on the days I'm not teaching to get to classes.  So hopefully in two weeks I'll be celebrating another milestone!

The past few weeks have been crazy personally so exercise has been do what I can when I can.  I've taught all of my classes, swam a lot with the boys and practiced Zumba on days I couldn't do anything else.  I'm proud to have kept up the streak over this most recent vacation.  We are done traveling now for a while, probably until next summer.  We may do a short camping trip this fall, but that is easy to keep this streak going during.

Anyway, this is kind of a data dump post to get all the info out and keep myself accountable.  So without further ado, here is what I've done the past 3 weeks:
Wednesday 7/27 - Taught 2 Zumba Toning classes
Thursday 7/28 - - Taught 1 Zumba class
Friday 7/29 - Went for a walk with AJ, also packed up everything for vacation
Saturday 7/30 - Taught 1 Zumba Toning class
Sunday 7/31 - Went swimming for about 90 minutes with the family
Monday 8/1 - Went swimming for about 90 minutes with the family
Tuesday 8/2 - Walked around Gatlinburg for about 20 minutes, also played mini golf
Wednesday 8/3 - Walked around Ober Gatlinburg for about 3 hours (it was very hilly!)
Thursday 8/4 - Walked around Gatlinburg for about 3 hours, also played mini golf
Friday 8/5 - Walked around Gatlinburg for about 3 hours
Saturday 8/6 - Packed up the chalet & did a few 5 minute walks at each stop we made while driving home
Sunday 8/7 - Practiced Zumba for about 15 minutes & unpacked everything
Monday 8/8 - Taught 2 Zumba Toning classes
Tuesday 8/9  - Took the boys to Zoombeezi Bay for about 3 hours
Wednesday 8/10 - Taught 1 Zumba class
Thursday 8/11 - Taught 1 Zumba and 1 Zumba Gold class
Friday 8/12 - Taught 1 Zumba class and played at the playground with Zak for about 30 minutes
Saturday 8/13 - Taught 1 Zumba Toning class
Sunday 8/14 - Rest Day, practiced a new Zumba song for about 15 minutes
Monday 8/15 - Taught 1 Zumba Toning and 1 Zumba Gold class
Tuesday 8/16 - Rest Day, practiced a new Zumba song for about 15 minutes

All in all I'm OK with what I've done over the past few weeks.  I walked a lot in TN.  I also ate and drank a lot!  I weighed in last week and I had gained 6 pounds since my last weigh in.  I was OK with that, pretty much what I expected.  I weighed in again today after an awesome week, including sticking to my calorie goal over the weekend (which never happens!) and I only lost 1 pound.  I'd be lying to say I wasn't disappointed.  I really expected to see 2-3 pounds gone.  But I kept right on trucking today with good eating choices and exercise.  I'm really hoping to see a big loss the last quarter of this year as I am determined to add in more strength training.  Stay tuned for my progress!

Sunday, August 14, 2016

Keeping Up With...Food (Menu Plan 8/15 - 8/21)

After a brief hiatus from menu planning, I am back!  We had a great vacation and now we are getting back into the groove.  I actually did plan out our meals last week, I just didn't have a minute to write up a blog post.  I started back to eating healthy on Monday and am feeling so much better!  I love eating the fatty, carb loaded junk food and drinking (lots) of alcohol but after almost 2 weeks I was starting to feel sluggish and just overall bad.

This week marks the return to school for the two older boys.  I have mixed feelings about them going back to school.  I've enjoyed every minute of this summer with them!  But we are starting to get on each other nerves, run out of things to do and bicker a lot more.  I think we are all ready for a set schedule.  I'm keeping things easy for most of this week since it's a busy one!

We will also get a CSA bag on Thursday this week so I'm not sure what kind of veggies we'll have from that.  I'm planning on buying what I need for these meals and then using whatever I get for next week's meals.  I also have some turnips that I still need to use so I'll either use them this week or next for sure.

Here's what we're eating this week:
Monday - Pork Chops Italiano and Tomatoes and Beans
Tuesday - Taco Tuesday!!
Wednesday - Chicken Taquitos and Roasted Zucchini
Thursday - Zoodles and Meatballs with Homemade Tomato Sauce
Friday - Baked Mushroom Thighs and Corn on the Cob
Saturday - Shrimp and Asparagus Pasta
Sunday - Turkey Ruebens and Salad or Leftovers (I will be gone all day and I'm sure I'll be hungry as soon as I get home!)

Water Flavor - Mango - my favorite!!

Meal Prep - I have the water set up and shopping done for meals thru Thursday.  I have fruit cut up for snacks.  I will make the filling for Weds on Tues.  I made the tomato sauce already this week so I just have to pull it out of the freezer for Thursday.  I will also be making this salad and adding roasted eggplant to it tomorrow and will be using it for lunches later this week.  And finally I have pasta & sauce on hand just in case things don't go as planned (and they usually do!)

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!!

Saturday, August 13, 2016

Keeping Up With...Family (Weekly Wrap 7/29 - 8/4 - Part 1)

Friday (7/29) was a crazy busy day!  AJ had two different appointments (chiropractor and GI Clinic) and Adrian also had a doctor's appointment.  We ran around like crazy all morning to get everyone where they needed to be and get a few last minute errands ran as well.  Then the rest of the day was spent packing so we're ready to leave in the morning.

Saturday (7/30) we finished up what we needed to do and hit the road to Tennessee.  We hit the road shortly after lunch and made great time getting down to Gatlinburg.  The boys were rock stars again in the car.  We made two very quick stops and got down to our chalet in about seven hours.  Zak talked the last 90 minutes because he didn't want to fall asleep which was both annoying and adorable.  We got there in time for dinner with everyone and just relaxed and spent some good quality family time.  We have 4 families here (my parents, my 2 brothers & their families and us) for the whole week to celebrate my parents' 40th anniversary.
Our view from the deck

Sunday (7/31) we got settled in a little more in the chalet and went and did some food shopping to start our week.  Then we went and spent some time at one of the 3 pools we have access to this week.  It was fun to swim with the boys and my nieces and fun to see them all playing together.

And then our big surprise for the week showed up.  My grandfather, uncle & 2 nieces flew in to surprise my parents.  They were delayed because of the weather in NJ (and getting a little lost here in TN) but they finally got here around 7:00 just in time for a huge Italian dinner.  My parents were shocked!!  They had no idea they were coming!  I'm shocked that we all kept it a secret, including my 3 boys.  We spent the night eating and talking and just being together.  It was fabulous!

Monday (8/1) we spent the morning hanging around the chalet and getting a few things done.  My mom made crumb cake with the kids, we cut up some fruit and veggies and we did some laundry.  Adrian, my father & my brothers went to play a round of golf.  When we were all done we headed to the pool for some fun and to cool off a little.  After that we went back home for dinner and more family time and to figure out what we would do the next day.  It was a relaxing and fun day.
Tuesday (8/2) morning we headed out to one of the most recommended places in Gatlinburg, Crockett's Breakfast Camp.  We enjoyed a delicious breakfast of pancakes, cinnamon rolls and waffles.  Delicious!  Thanks to all of our friends who recommended it!

Then we headed to play some "Hillbilly Mini Golf" with my brothers, sisters in law and nieces.  It was a pretty cool concept.  You rode up the hill in a little tram like car, played the course down about halfway and then rode the tram down the rest of the way.  The course was fun and we all enjoyed it.  I didn't win, but I got the most holes in one - three!!  I was wildly inconsistent though so I mostly got ones or fives.

After golfing most of the crew headed back to the chalet to cool off in the pool.  The five of us headed to Pigeon Forge to hit up an arcade.  The boys had seen them as we were driving around and really wanted to go to one.  We had a fun time playing a bunch of different games together and walked out with a few cars, some candy and an inflatable bat.  After that we headed to Kroger to stock up on some essentials (like Graeter's ice cream!) and headed back to the chalet for dinner and some board games.  Another fantastic day with family!

I think I will end this here and continue with the next two days of the week in part 2.  We did quite a bit those days and this is already a pretty long post.  Come back to hear what we did the rest of the week!