Monday, March 31, 2008

Weight Loss Monday

Last Monday I weighed 135.2 and was relieved to step on the scale this morning to find 133.4 which means I lost 1.8 pounds for the week. Do you know on Saturday I reached a milestone and weighed 132.8? I was soo happy! I hadn't seen those numbers since KK was 1 years old and I was a breast feeding machine. Oh how I loved the calories I burned breast feeding. I didn't have to do anything to maintain my weight. Times are different now but I don't mind. I like the treadmill and feel like I am improving my cardiovascular health as well as building some muscle.

So my total calories burned for the week were 4529. So I am burning a pound of fat by treadmill workouts and a little bit by diet change. I am averaging on the whole a pound a week which I think is just fine. I am right where I wanted to be. I was 132 when I got married. I was also 132 when I got pregnant with both of the girls. When I met hubby though I was a slender 124 so I think since I am still having fun at this treadmill weight loss I will see if I can get down to that number. If not I don't mind the size I am now.

Saturday, March 29, 2008

Freeze your sweats!

I love baking, it is probably one of my favorite things to do. Unfortunately as you get older, your bodies metabolism can't handle it much anymore. So I have learned whenever I make a batch of cookies or brownies I let them cool, eat a couple, and then freeze them.

I usually either forget they are in the freezer or don't want to take the time to take one out and defrost it. So the best part is I am not eating them on a daily basis. You know what is even better? Whenever I have company over I can take a few out for us. Also, when I go to bunco I am usually in charge of bringing a dessert. Many times I can just go to my freezer and pick out an assortment. Here is what I brought to my last bunco game from the freezer:

Brownies and peanut butter cookies with milk chocolate chips!

Friday, March 28, 2008

Wow, I can't believe I got such a good deal!

Today was one of those days where I was really pleased with my thrifty abilities. I was in shock at how I was able to take a stove that was $899 from Sears and get in from Home Depot for $613. I am still grinning from ear to ear. I actually thought that I would be getting it for around $688 if Home Depot honored there policy of beating competitors prices by 10% because the stove was going to be on sale tomorrow at sears for $764. However, in the fine print it said on in stock purchases and I knew it was possible this could be classified as special order as I knew the store did not have one of these stoves on their floor.

So I went in hopeful and left absolutely pleased and ecstatic. I brought in all of my paper work from sears showing the sale they were running tomorrow and what the price would be. I also brought a printed copy of Home Depot's policy on beating competitors prices by 10%. (Bringing in this policy really saved me because the sales associate told the manager I brought it and read it to him) The manager o.k.'d meeting the price at $764 and then they were running a promotion to get a $75 gift card back for appliance purchases in that price range. They used that promotion to beat competitors price by 10%. Just as we were checking out she told me if I opened a Home Depot card they would give me an additional 10% off my stove which of course I said yes. We don't carry credit card debt and I will cancel this credit card anyway within a few months. No need to keep a card that won't continue to give me rewards. So once that 10% was taken off it was down to $688 and I will be receiving the $75 Home depot gift card in the mail for making the appliance purchase. So if you subtract the home depot gift card that makes my stove come out to $613. I am so happy that I saved almost $300 by shopping around and being patient! BTW I also got free delivery and haul away!!!!

I am extremely confindent that hubby will have the entire $75 giftcard spent on plants. So, everyone is happy!

Thursday, March 27, 2008

Look what we won!

Last night was the Family Pizza Night Fundraiser Raffle at Aly's preschool. Last year we bought 20 tickets to the event and went and had pizza. We didn't win anything and the place was so crowded it was hard for our personality type to stay. So this year I decided to buy thirty dollars worth of raffle tickets--what I would of spent on the pizza--and we skipped going to the event.

After the event was over my friend Cathy called me to give me the wonderful news. I won:

A $25 gift card to Safeway. This just seems so fitting for me since I have been so obsessed with bargain/coupon shopping lately and all of my great deals on groceries have been through Safeway.

We also won a $25 gift card to Bed Bath & Beyond. Don't quite have anything in mind to purchase there but I am sure I will find something eventually. Woo hoo, luck was on our side last night!

Tuesday, March 25, 2008

JoJo's Circus costumes

Lately one of KK's favorite shows has been JoJo's Circus. So when I saw that the Disney store had a JoJo's Circus costume on clearance for $4.99 I just had to buy it! When it arrived I was so happy and had her try it on right away. Unfortunately I bought a size too large. The size I bought ended up fitting Aly. So instead of returning the costume---it would have cost me more in shipping charges alone, I decided to buy another one in a smaller size. That way they each can have one. Whether they want to wear them for Halloween or not doesn't really matter. They can at least have fun with them in the mean time.

Isn't the costume cute? Hard to believe it only cost $4.99 right? It is good quality too.

Monday, March 24, 2008

KK holds baby Travis

Today was the first time in KK's life that she ever got to hold a real baby. She was thrilled when Kristi asked her if she wanted to hold baby Travis. Immediately she perked up and followed the directions to sit up with her back next to the couch. She put her arms out and couldn't stop smiling. She was truly in heaven.

Yes, the baby is only 8 weeks old. He is a good size baby huh? Of course KK is little for her age but they sure look cute together!

I took four pictures of KK holding the baby and she just couldn't stop smiling. KK is usually very difficult to photograph so you know she was very happy to have this opportunity. No KK, mommy is not interested in having any more babies. You will have to get your baby thrill from other families. Maybe you can start babysitting in your teens. ;-)

Aly already has her gender role figured out!

Today we were lucky enough to have our friend Kristi and her two sons Nick and Travis over. Nick is 3 and Travis is 8 weeks old. Aly and Nick love to play together but as they get older it is becoming quite clear they are filling their gender roles and preferring gender based play.

I will say they did happen to play house today and it was quite interesting to see what they thought each person should do. Aly was the Mommy sheep and Nick was the Daddy sheep. Apparently, Aly decided that the Mommy sheep stays home to take care of the baby lamb and the Daddy sheep goes out hunting. Nick left to go hunting and brought his family back cherries. How cute are they deciding who has what role. I guess they really do model after us don't they?

So now that I am ready to go back to work, how will that change Aly's view of what the woman's responsibility is? It will be interesting to see!

Weight Loss Monday

I have been tracking my daily weight and workout routine for a week now. I have decided to go ahead and start posting the results from the week each Monday morning. Remember my previous post where I talked about my theory on women, weight loss and water retention? Well I think I am already showing it!

Last Monday I weighed 135.2. By Saturday morning I was down to 133.6. Guess what happened when I woke up this morning? I was back up to 135.2. Yeah, that's right! I also was crampy and should be starting my period anytime. So I personally feel like that was water retention due to my upcoming period.

For the week my total calories burned on my treadmill workouts was 4081.3. Now remember, it takes 3500 calories to burn a pound of fat. So in theory my workouts alone would have burnt 1.1 pounds of fat. By Saturday I was at 1.6 which means .5 pounds of weight loss came from diet/calorie restriction. So what happened from Saturday to Monday morning had to of been water retention. I continued working out both days burning an average of 550 calories each day. So it will be interesting to see when this week is over how many pounds I may be at next Monday.

Sunday, March 23, 2008

Happy Easter!

Aly was so excited for Easter! She woke up just after 7 excited to go downstairs to see what the Easter Bunny left for her. I told her she had to wait to go downstairs until everyone was awake. So she went in to wake up Daddy. In seconds she had that accomplished. Just as she was getting ready to go in and wake up KK, KK woke up. The girls rushed downstairs to see their Easter surprises!

Aly got her favorite toy--Littlest Pet Shops. KK got a carousal and was quite excited to play with it. She spent a large part of the morning twirling the carousal around and around.

They each got a chocolate egg in their basket and were allowed to eat them after we had breakfast. They both had a hard time in the beginning biting them but they were persistent and had them finished in no time!
Check back to this post in a day or two and I will have a video uploaded of their Easter egg hunt in our living room.

Saturday, March 22, 2008

Sticker Grandma comes for a visit

The girls were thrilled when they learned Sticker Grandma would be coming to stay with us over Easter weekend. They named her Sticker Grandma because she loves to send them stickers in the mail. She also buys sticker books for them to do when she comes and she helps them place the stickers where they go.

Since we won't be able to be with Sticker Grandma for her birthday next month we decided to surprise her and celebrate her birthday today! Aly loved helping to make her birthday cake.

We made Grandma's favorite cake, chocolate cake with homemade frosting. I have to admit I hadn't made homemade frosting since before the girls were born. It always seems easier to just buy a can!

It was so cute to watch the girls help Grandma blow out her candles. They sure couldn't get enough of Grandma. They followed her everywhere and played with her every moment that was possible.

KK's first picture for me

While I was cooking dinner the other night, Daddy took the girls outside to paint at the art easel. As I was getting the chicken off the grill, KK came up to me with a big smile on her face and said, "Look Mommy, I made this picture for you!" She melted my heart. This was the first time she had ever told me she made something for me. It was such a moment for me. I was so proud and felt so much love all at the same time.

The picture she made is a waterfall she said. I am so excited to see all the future pictures she will make for me.

Friday, March 21, 2008

Can't wait until Mega Saturday

For those of you that have been to our house you can pretty much agree that everything things to be replaced or remodeled. Well, we have lived in our house for 6 years and have only been able to afford to do a few things at a time. This years tax return has been dedicated to replacing the stove and hot water heater. Originally we were going to convert those two things over to gas but after getting quotes and finding out that it would take around 6K total to make the change we have decided to just stick with electric.

In an effort to cut our energy bill I have done research to find out what can help the most. For a range the best thing you can do if you can't afford a 2,000 dollar inductive stove top is to buy a ceramic stove top instead. The ceramic stove top has adjustable sizes to fit your pots and you won't loose heat between the drip pan and the coil. The second thing you can do is buy a true convection oven which has three heating elements and a fan. The third element is key which is located around the fan so that when the fan is working it is circulating heated air around the oven. This process allows you to cook/bake at 25 degrees lower and 20 minutes less on the hour. It is claimed that a convection oven can be 20% more efficient than a regular oven. So hopefully this will help a bit with our energy bill. Although I am sure the hot water heater will help the most. Ours is so old it has to be completely inefficient.

I can't wait until March 29th to buy my new stove! On Tuesday I went into Sears to pick out a new stove. The sale price wasn't quite what I wanted so I told the sales lady that I would just buy it online at another store since it is two hundred dollars cheaper. Well, she was kind enough to tell me that if I am willing to wait until Saturday the 29th, that I can get 15% off the price plus free delivery and haul away!

Wednesday, March 19, 2008

Weight loss and time periods during the month for women

A month ago I started working out daily on my treadmill. My goal was twice a day with some days being as ambitious as 3 times a day. The first two weeks were difficult because I went away for a four day weekend trip and the very next weekend I went away for two days. That meant I didn't get to work out on those days.

Over the past month I have managed to loose 6 pounds! I will say, at times it was discouraging. I had one week where I was loosing half pound a day, then another week where I was gaining 1.2 pound, not loosing anything, etc. Then the next week it was back to 1/2 pound or less a day. The last week it was back to gaining, not loosing, etc.

So here is my theory:
During the two weeks where I wasn't loosing this is what happened:
The 1st week I was ovulating. I believe during that week I had water retention.
The last week I was on my period and definitely had water retention.

I am going to test this theory out this month. I have started documenting daily how many calories I burned and what my weight was each morning. If I find the same pattern then I know it is true. This is important because during those two weeks I wasn't doing really well I found myself getting discouraged. This would at least explain it and the calendar can help me to see what my body does.

When you are doing great loosing weight it motivates you to keep working hard and stay away from eating the wrong things or too much of a good thing. However, on those stagnant weeks your motivation goes down. Hopefully the calendar will show me to still keep positive and move forth because the next week will get better after my water retention is gone.

For any of you currently on a weight loss program have you found this to be true?

Friday, March 14, 2008

Dr Suess: Horton Hears a Who

Tonight hubby and I took the girls to see the movie Dr Suess: Horton Hears a Who. It was a very last minute decision as we decided it at 5:30 and the movie was at 6:45.

Aly absolutely loved the movie! This was the first time that she hasn't asked when it would be over. I thought it was absolutely adorable and can't wait for it to come out on DVD. That will definately be a movie we will be buying. All of the language was clean, the storyline was mellow--no major scare factor in it. The scariest part was a brief second when the kangaroo was looking for the vulture. He was hiding and popped out. That was it. Any child could handle that. We have had difficulty in the past with movies having scary parts in them to attract an older crowd of kids. All disney movies have pretty scary scenes in it. So this was refreshing that it didn't.

KK our two year old is still not ready for the movie theatre. What a bummer. Hubby and I had to trade taking her out. Lucky for me hubby took her out the majority of the time. I did miss the end though and can't wait to see it. Maybe I should just take Aly on a Mommy and Aly night out. Then we can see it again and I can see the parts I missed!

Thursday, March 13, 2008

Great deals on clothes for the adults!

KMART has such great deals when you wait until they have their final clearance sale. Sears does too and I was amazed to find take an additional 80% off already clearanced merchandise!

The black dress was only $2.36 can you believe it? I think I will add a colorful ribbon to the black dress just so the whole thing isn't all one color. The jeans in the picture were only $2.50. I couldn't believe it when I saw the tag. I like the jeans too, they fit well. Now the shirt was $3.23. Aly really wanted me to buy it because she liked it soo much. So I need you to help me out. Is it too obnoxious? Too colorful? I don't want everyone staring at me if I wear it. So please comment and let me know if I should just hide it in my closet or wear it around the house for her.

I know the picture isn't very good but hubby got a navy blue fleece hooded sweatshirt for $3.00. I was so shocked that it was so cheap! I couldn't make it myself for that much money. The jeans were $6.00 which is a great deal as well.

Wednesday, March 12, 2008

New Bedding for the girls!

A year ago we bought the girls matching beds so they could share a room. Well, I never got around to buying them bedding. I just used old comforters from my full size bed that I already had. Today, I came across bedding that I had been eyeing at Walmart for awhile. Lucky me the bedding was on clearance and I got each one for $19 a piece! Now the girls have matching bedding!

Isn't it cute and so feminie? The girls both loved it and I think I made the beds like 20 times before I was able to get these pics! Now if I had my way I would paint there room pink and green with green on the bottom half of all the walls and pink on the top half. However, they both love the glow in the dark stars and planets so I doubt I will be able to change that for awhile.

Now I am eyeing some frog sheets at Target for Aly. I asked her if she would rather have frog sheets or Littlest Pet Shop sheets and she wanted frog sheets. The great part about the frog sheets is they would actually go with this bedding quite well. I will probably pick them up next Tuesday. I have some yellow sheets that I can use for KK's bed for now. She doesn't really care much what her sheets look like so I think I will wait until she gets a little older.

Friday, March 7, 2008

Dennis the Menace Park

Perhaps the children's most favorite part of the trip to Monterey was Dennis the Menace Park. It was a very large park with multiple play structures, a real train locomotive, long slides, and even a bridge to run across. KK was so busy I couldn't even get her to take a picture!

One of their favorite things to do was to run across the bridge. I had to actually ask Aly to go down the slide so I could take a picture!

Look at Aly posing like she is on the ship from Titanic--and she hasn't even seen the movie! Hee, Hee.

KK just loved running all over the park. Click on the picture to enlarge and check her out. So cute! This was such a great park, too bad we don't have one like it where we live!

Thursday, March 6, 2008

Whale Watching in Monterey

Last weekend we were lucky enough to have a nice 4 day family getaway. My cousin Sarah was having a baby shower so originally we were going for the shower. When hubby's project at work got cancelled it turned into the perfect opportunity for him to take a few days off.

It was a cold weekend in Monterey. In fact, I think it was actually warmer back at home in the Sierras. We thought it would be fun to take the girls on a whale watching trip. The current migration through that area are grey whales. Of course before you book the trip they don't really tell you that the whales are in between migrating up and down the coast. They told us once we were on the boat.
It was a blistery cold and windy day at sea. At first we took cover inside with the girls. Of course hubby wanted to be outside rather quick so he took KK out with him. Aly wanted to stay inside. Within minutes I was feeling sea sick due to the choppy waters. I had to go sit outside and held KK tight to me as hubby took Aly. KK fell asleep within minutes.
Shortly after we began spotting whale spouts. Since KK was asleep on me I could only see what was in view on the right back half on the boat. So I only saw one spout. Hubby and Aly on the other hand saw a few and were even lucky enough to see a mommy and baby spout. They never saw any tails and only saw the top part of their body.
Apparently, that was the first day the whales were migrating back up the coast to Alaska. So we were lucky enough to see some of those spouts. In previous days other boat trips weren't as lucky.
Hubby and I were spoiled though from a trip to Hawaii early in our relationship. We saw so many whales right next to the boat in clear water. We could see their whole bodies and saw their tales flip in the water as well. So for us being so spoiled the Monterey trip was pretty boring. KK never saw anything but birds and otters. although she was so funny because when she was awake she kept pointing and shouting, "Look, I saw a whale!" It was too cute.

Wednesday, March 5, 2008

Free cereal and more great prices!

Check out everything I got for $4.00! Yes that is right, only $4. I got:
3 boxes of Cinnamon Life Cereal
1 box of Total Cranberry Crunch
1 box of Total Raisin Bran
2 bags of flat earth veggie chips
4 boxes of my most favorite Fiber One granola bars.

Safeway had a promotion for 5 boxes of cereal for $5.00. I then printed out $1 off coupons for each box of cereal making all of the cereal free. I had two coupons for free flat earth veggie crisps thanks to MIL printing one out for me as I had already reached my quota. I actually had coupons for .60 cents off of each box of Fiber One Granola bars but for some reason they didn't work. If they would have worked I would have gotten the entire lot of $1.20. Instead I spent $1 a box on the granola bars which is still a great deal as they range from $2.50-3.99 a box.

If you would like to learn more about this promotion click here:
Be Thrifty Like Us

Monday, March 3, 2008

My day has not started off right

This morning I woke up around 6:30 and was looking forward to my normal routine. Hubby has recently started going back to normal hours at work which means he is still home at this time. I had just gotten on the computer to look through my emails and hubby comes in and needs to use the computer before going to work. Bummer, my routine has already been changed. I go downstairs to get the living room ready to be vacuumed. Just as I am about to get on the treadmill to do my morning workout, little KK wakes up. Oh man! There goes that idea--and routine--hee, hee.

So now I am getting KK ready for the day and vacuuming the living room. I get Aly up and ready for preschool. Today was my volunteer day at school which means KK has a babysitter. Wouldn't you know it, 8:30 came and went and the babysitter didn't show up. So now I can't volunteer at Aly's preschool because you can't bring siblings along. Now someone was counting on me to help and I couldn't be there to do it. This is really hard for my personality as I am extremely reliable and it was so difficult for me not to see my commitment through. It is even more difficult when I have no control over it.

Oh yeah, BTW my hubby used all of the hot water this morning so I didn't even get a hot shower. I can't wait to get that propane line to the house so we can get a new hot water heater! I am the only one that ends up suffering from our poor supply of hot water.

The rest of the day hasn't been as bad. I was lucky enough to stumble upon KMART's take an additional 40% off of already clearanced items. I got hubby 3 fleece sweatshirts for $3 a piece. Can you believe it? I also got Aly some flannel two piece pj's for $3.60 a piece. Rumor has it that Sears is doing their big take an additional 50% off already clearanced items so if you have a KMART of Sears near you I suggest you go and check it out. Stock up on your children's clothes for next year, buy those needed items for winter that you are low on, etc....This is the best prices you will find.

Well, I am going to see if my lovely girls will allow me a workout on the treadmill. Wish me luck!