Monday, February 28, 2011

Monday Mix it Up

Hello everyone! Hope you had a good weekend! Mine was up and down but it was okay. First things first, I wanted to announce the giveaway of Chocolate Sprinkles The winner is Susie at Chabby Chic Mom Congrats Susie! I have some more giveaways planned so stay tuned for that.

I used my crock pot to make our dinner meals this weekend. On Saturday, I made a roast and slow cooked it all day. It was super yummy and moist. I am not a big fan of cooked carrots with potatoes so I just cut myself some meat and enjoyed it like that.


On Sunday, I made homemade chicken soup. Man, did it smell good while it was cooking. It turned out good too (according to Dave) but I had issues with it (parts) so I just made myself a grilled cheese. It really was a grazy, lazy weekend. Too much eating and not enough moving. The good news is that I went to bed around 8:30 p.m. last night and woke up rested this morning.

This is a tap light that I got at Dollar Tree.  Do you guys have Dollar Tree where you are? I had never been to one and they are fairly new to our area. Holy cow is it a cool store!!! I kept walking around asking my friend "Is it really only $1?" I have been trying to come up with a solution to the dark, coat closet in our hallway. I have tried other tap lights and other adhesives but they did not stick but this seemed to work. I just hung them up with a nail and they seem to work great. 



I am looking forward to it being a new month tomorrow. This has been a pretty funkified month if you ask me. Good thing it was a short month! LOL! Until next time...

Sunday, February 27, 2011

Kate's Kreations

In 2003, I started selling my custom painted ceramic pieces.  I miss doing it and plan on starting it up again. If you would like to see some of my work you can check them out on my other blog Kate's Kreations.

Here is one of my best sellers.



I have added a link to Kate's Kreations at the top of my blog as well and I will let you know when I add something new!  Hope you have a great day!

Saturday, February 26, 2011

Friday, February 25, 2011

Snowy Saturday?

Happy Friday Everybody! What a week this has been! Definitely going down in the history books of my life for sure.  I managed to make it through the day yesterday without falling asleep at my desk lol! For dinner, I made some white cheddar shells and threw some leftover chicken and sauteed spinach in with it.  It was tasty and easy. I ended up going to bed around 9:00 p.m. but before I went to bed I wanted to organize some earrings that my mom gave me. so I put them in this acrylic box. It is used for bead storage but I find its a great way to store my earrings so I can see which one will coordinate with my outfit for the day. 

Top of box
Back of box
It is supposed to snow here this weekend! The last time it snowed here it was 1976 (I was 10 years old) So it is pretty exciting for us! As for the weekend I would like to see Gnomeo and Juliet and I want to go to Zumba tomorrow at 11:00 a.m. but otherwise that's about it. I would like to go through our storage unit but we will see. Until next time...



P.S. Have you entered the giveaway? If not there is still time! Go here for the details.

Thursday, February 24, 2011

Moving Forward

It went well yesterday. Better then I expected really. I appreciate all your comments and virtual hugs. It means more then I can say. 

I wanted to share the pictures of the niche because this is something I have never seen before.  They have glass fronts and the urn is placed inside but mementos can be added as desired. In one of the nearby niches, a young man had been killed in combat so it had his dog tags, pictures of him in his high school football uniform and other keepsakes. It was a beautiful tribute to his young life.



Niche location
 Peter Wong, the public administrator picked out everything. (I picked the cemetery) and I think he did a fine job. He is really good at his job and I do plan on writing the county to commend him on his assistance with all these arrangements. He even brought me flowers.
Peter gave me these

I cut these inside our courtyard
I was supposed to get together with Michael (bio brother) on Tuesday night. Well, I sat around waiting for him to call and never got a call or text. I do admit that my feelings were hurt but he was down here getting surgery on his hand/wrist so I tried to put myself in his shoes. I would have been stressing out at that point!

I ended up playing Wii for almost 2 hours with my friend Tony. We had a blast but I kept beating him at everything and he wasn't digging it LOL! He said "Katie, let's play something I can beat you at!" Classic!

After the service, I ended up at the bar for awhile. We had lunch and I had a few beers and a couple shots. I was pretty toasty when Dave came and got me and we went out to dinner. Needless to say I am belly aching this morning. I have not ate or drank like that in a long time. It used to be a regular occurrence. :-( I am a little tired today and plan on going home and getting jammies on right away. Until next time...

Wednesday, February 23, 2011

Rest In Peace Bruce


Bruce Loren Smith

September 15, 1943 - December 26, 2010


Dear Bruce,

I hope you had the time of your life!

May you Rest In Peace



**Today we are putting Bruce's Urn in the niche at Santa Clara Mission Cemetary at 12:15 p.m. This is the song I will be playing during the internment**


Tuesday, February 22, 2011

Two - Twenty Two - Eleven

Helllo! How are you guys this morning? Hope everyone had a good weekend! It was a good but soggy weekend for me.  It rained all day Saturday and Sunday. I was in organizational mode again. Cleaning out drawers and clearing clutter.  Last week, I hung up some cork board squares and they were not very sturdy. Dave found them on the floor a few mornings so I decided to go these. I got them at Target. They are made by a company called Board Dudes.  They are a lot sturdier and I like the lime green magnetic board. It is such a happy color!

Cork Boards -- Take Two

Speaking of Target, this is what it looked like when we were there. It was about 8:30 a.m. on Sunday morning. I think I will do ALL my Target shopping at this time of the day. SO much better then the usual chaos in the aisles. 

Not a soul in sight!
I was on and off with food over the weekend. It isn't that I am ingesting bad food like junk food or sweets just more then I should of the "normal" healthy foods. So, I am back on it this morning. I have my bugg on and I am rearing to go. I have a feeling the anxiety I am feeling will affect my appetite though but we will see.

Tonight, my bio brother Michael and I will be getting together for dinner. He is having some surgery done on his wrist tomorrow morning in San Francisco so he drove down from Eureka last night. I think it rather ironic that the day I will be interning Bruce is the same day that Michael is having surgery. 

View at the Grand Wailea
My friend that was staying in Maui at my favorite hotel took this sunset picture and sent it to me. I just wanted to share. It is my dream spot :-D

I was going to announce the winner of the Giveaway today but I have decided to extend the deadline since it was a holiday weekend. So, I will be choosing the winner on Monday, February 28th. I want everybody to have an opportunity to win so if you haven't entered, hop on over and leave a comment telling me what your favorite accessory is.  Until next time...

Saturday, February 19, 2011

Amos Lee- Violin




I love Amos Lee!




P.S. Have you entered my latest giveaway? Check it out here.

Friday, February 18, 2011

Chocolate Sprinkles & Stuff

Happy Friday everybody! I can’t tell you how happy I am that it’s Friday AND it’s a 3 day weekend. Can’t beat that right? Nothing too exciting planned for the weekend except organizing our storage unit and getting in some exercise. It will be raining most of the weekend so maybe a movie will be added to the agenda.

I really enjoyed the play last night! So cute and who doesn’t like the story of Beauty and the Beast? I brought Nikki a single long stem rose and she loved it. I wanted to give her a pink one but they were all out. Only white and red after Valentine's day - grrrrrr.  As for dinner, I pretty much failed. I brought a cereal bar and string cheese with me and ate those early on. When we were done (8:00 p.m.) we went to Taco Bell and I had a chicken burrito.  Note to self: Need better planning next time. Needs to be healthy and sustainable.  I logged everything in my bugg and uploaded the data this morning. This is my new routine. If I forget, I can bring my Netbook with me and upload it at work or wherever I am.

As for the weigh in, I am up 3 lbs. from my last weigh in a few weeks ago. Loose portion control and lack of activity the last couple of weeks has added up. So dusting myself off, straightening up my act and I am on my way again. I will tell you though that that is the difference between now and my previous attempts at losing weight. Something like this would throw me into a box of brownies before but not anymore!

Now for the fun part of this post!!! One of my colleagues introduced me to a sweet young lady named Rachel from Thread Muse.  She makes lovely crocheted scarves. She sells them on Etsy which is a great place to shop for handmade items! She has provided this lovely scarf called "Chocolate Sprinkles" for me to Giveaway to one of my readers. All you need to do to enter the giveaway is to tell me in the what your favorite accessory is. I will announce the winner next Tuesday, February 22nd. If you are not the winner and interested in purchasing a scarf Rachel has authorized a 10% discount. Just use katiej for the coupon code when checking out. She also authorized Free shipping for US residents as well. Thanks Rachel!


Hope you have a great weekend! Until next time...

Thursday, February 17, 2011

Dancing and Drama

Had a good night last night. Dave made Chicken enchiladas from leftover chicken. The meal was mere pennies because I got the chicken from Costco. We had a Salsa salad to go with it. Super yummy! After dinner I decided to pop in the Just Dance 2 Wii game to check it out. You can set up programs to follow and I chose the "easy" one since I am a beginner.  It definitely gets your heart rate going and it was fun. On the first song, I was able to follow along pretty closely (It's Raining Men) but then the next song (Tik Tok) was harder but I still did okay. It looks like it is going to be a lot of fun especially when we can compete against each other. I will give you a more formal review when I have delved into it a little deeper.

Tonight, I am going to see a production of Beauty and the Beast. Nikki (neighbor) is in the play and I am looking forward to seeing it.  It is right after work so I will just go directly there and meet up with her folks. Not sure how I will fit dinner in. Might need to pack a snack to keep my blood sugar stable. Speaking of, I am due to get blood work done so I am going to go tomorrow morning at o'dark hundred.  The results are usually posted online within 24 hours so I am anxious to see the new numbers.

I am going to weigh come hell or high water tomorrow and I also will be announcing another Giveaway! I am excited as I am getting the items today!



P.S. I have my bodybugg on and will upload it tonight before bed <---- new routine

Wednesday, February 16, 2011

Steamer Love!

The winner of my Blogiversary Giveaway is 135 by 2012! Thank you ALL for the wonderful comments on my Blogiversary post. You guys really know how to make a girl feel loved! I have another giveaway in the works so stay tuned for that.
This one is on sale at Walgreen's for $9.99!
Have I ever told you that I BIG puffy heart my Rice Cooker/Steamer?  Years ago, I purchased a rice cooker for cooking rice. I never even thought of using it as a steamer even though it came with a steaming rack and instructions.  It wasn't until a couple of years ago that I started exploring the options of steaming and I was SOLD instantly. It is so easy and so much better then boiling or microwaving. All you do is add about an inch of water on the bottom of the steamer, add you veggies then click the "Cook" button and it will cook it and then it will switch to "Warm" when it is done. Well yesterday, I was reading someones blog post about preparing Steel Cut Oatmeal and that they prepped the night before and turned them on in the morning when they got up. I decided to try it so before I went to bed I put in the one cup of oats and two cups of water. When I got up this morning, I turned it on before hopping in the shower and within 10-15 mins. I had yummy, steaming hot oatmeal! I added some Truvia and fresh strawberries and I was good to go. I brought it with me to work and ate it when I got to my desk.  It was so easy and super yummy AND filling!  The next thing I want to try with it is dried cranberries and raisins. So many options!

I have been bad about wearing my bugg lately. I usually upload my bugg data at work but they upgraded the software recently and now I need to download it to my PC but need help from MIS. I was friends with all the previous people in that position (I have been here 7 years) but there is a new contractor and I am not feeling any warm fuzzies from him. I haven't mentioned it yet but in the meantime, I have my Netbook so I can update data on that. It is just a matter of logistics. I need to work on being less resistant to changes for sure. Until next time...

Tuesday, February 15, 2011

Tuesday Tidbits

I hope you had a good Valentine's day. Mine turned out quite nicely.  Dave got me a charm for my Pandora Bracelet that is sterling with a fresh water pearl. He also got me some red Gerbera Daises and a great card that made me cry. Seriously mushy card  - 'nuff said.

Here is my bracelet Shelley. In order from left to right are moon and stars, heart, lots of hearts, new charm, ladybug, purse and flower with pink CZ.


Dave made me dinner as well. We had whole wheat pasta rotini with homemade sauce, salad and garlic bread. I am a weirdo and I don't like angel hair or vermicelli but all of the other shapes are okay. We had vitamuffins for dessert. I found them at Target grocery but they were $4.19 for 4 which seems kinda spendy. I will do a price comparison vs. ordering them online.

I was poking around blogs the other day and came across WomanFreebies.com. They have a daily email that comes out with discounts and free samples.  I also discovered Groupon.com that offers daily specials for vendors in your neighborhood. Check them out when you have a chance.

Tonight, Dave has a meeting so I will be on my own. He is going to cook dinner for us though before he take off. I think I will try the Just Dance DVD and see how it is. I also want to go to the library and check out a Hula DVD. I loved doing Hula 20+ years ago and thought it would be cool to check it out again. Until next time...



P.S. You still have time to enter the Giveaway!

Monday, February 14, 2011

Projects & Parties



How was your weekend? Good I hope. I was in project mode! I hung some cork board to help create my "mediation station"  Here are the boards by themselves

Here they are with items on them. I plan on filling the top right one with pictures that correspond to my dream board and the bottom one I will just pin notes and memos as needed.
This is on the wall by my kitchen table. I wanted to write notes to Dave and reminders for myself.

I recently got this framed picture so we hung it up. It is a picture of the Lone Cypress at Pebble Beach, Monterey, CA.

I put it here next the photograph of the Venetian Hotel in Capitola, CA. Capitola is my happy place.


This is a candle holder that I just love, it holds tea light candles in the shells. I tried to capture the picture with the candles lit but it did not work.


Dave has been wanting to frame some family pictures but waited until I could help him.  We had to do some enlarging etc. but the pictures turned out nicely. Doesn't that Febreeze flameless luminary look like a real candle? I swear there are STILL times I want to actually blow it out and I have had it for months. LOL!


I made these cookies with Nikki and Helen. They warn you right on the package in big letters "Do Not Eat Raw Cookie Dough" I was very tempted to do it though even though "they" warned me not to. How warped is that???


I brought a plate of them to work today. I did end up having three of them last night. I miss baking but know it is a trigger for overindulging for me. People at work loved them though :-D

My neighbor's son, Joey, is turning 13 this coming weekend and his parent's bought him Kinect. Oh-Emm-Geee it is fun fun fun! His folks bought him Dance Central for it and we played. Guess who is the champion of the day? ME!!! I did Lady Gaga's Poker Face. It was soooo fun and it really was a good workout. I bought the Just Dance 2 game but did not have a chance to play it.  It was on sale at Game Stop for $29.99 which was $10 off so I got it. I am anxious to try it and will definitely give you a review.

Dave is cooking me dinner tonight and is bringing me a surprise today so that will be nice.  My mom says Valentine's Day is just for lovers but I got her a card and little garden decor stone with a cardinal on it. I am sure she will dig it. I am going to go by her house at lunchtime and give it to her. Until next time...


P.S. If you haven't seen my blogiversary post you can check it out here. You still have time to enter the giveaway!

Sunday, February 13, 2011

Gratitude


Develop an attitude of gratitude, and give thanks for everything that happens to you, knowing that every step forward is a step toward achieving something bigger and better than your current situation

-- Brian Tracy



Friday, February 11, 2011

2 Year Blogiversary & Giveaway!!!


Happy Blogiversary to me!



Back Then...

When I first started this journey I weighed 315 lbs. I did not really have much quality of life. I was taking 7 different medications for various ailments including high blood pressure, high cholesterol, acid reflux and Type II Diabetes. I also was doing insulin twice a day and sleeping with a CPAP machine. My doctor had suggested WLS but I was very hesitant because of the risks associated with surgery. I told her that I would try to lose weight on my own and would do the surgery if I was unsuccessful. I was at my breaking point and knew I just HAD to do something or I was going to die. Literally. D-i-e. Everybody has a different bottom and that was mine. I had to make some lifestyle changes QUICK or ELSE! I was desperate and depressed. I had a pretty grim outlook on life.

First Year

I had to make a plan. I had to do something that would be sustainable for the long haul so I tracked the calories I was consuming and the exercise I was getting through my bodybugg.  I adjusted my portion sizes and aimed for more fresh fruits, whole grains and fresh vegetables.  I had a very warped idea of what an actual portion was. I managed to lose 60 lbs. the first year of my journey. I started walking, riding my bike and doing belly dancing and Zumba. I wanted it be fun! I maintained the 60 lb. loss but did replace 15 lbs. of fat with muscle.  To be honest, I did think the weight would come off much quicker but you get out of it what you put into right? Exercise is where I falter. I have not been consistent about it and would probably have lost more had I been but I won't make excuses. I will tell you that now at 250 it is a WHOLE lot easier moving around then it was at 315. I am making an effort to incorporate it into my daily life now and I am doing better but there is still a whole lot of improvement needed here.

Second Year

Last year was a whirlwind on the emotional front for sure.  I found out in July that I have biological siblings that I never knew existed and that my biological mother was deceased from an overdose. My niece Candace and I met 8 days later as she is the one who lives closest to me. Dave and I moved out of a chaotic living situation shortly thereafter to a quiet complex and I got to go on my second Alaskan Cruise with my mom. I managed not to gain any weight on the cruise this time either! :-D I met my biological Uncle Steve in August, met Tess and Michael my siblings in September and then found my biological father in October .We met once and communicated by phone and I sent him cards and a picture of me and but he died the day after Christmas due to complications from catching on fire while smoking. He will be interned on Feb. 23rd.  The entire year I maintained the 60 lb. loss and bounced up and down with the same 5 lbs. As much as that stinks, it also taught me that I could choose constructive ways of coping with my emotions other then food. I did a whole lot of deep soul searching and feel like I have come to terms with a lot of the emotional sources of my morbid obesity. It's all about progress not perfection right? It was a life changing year.

Today

I am feeling that I am on my way again even though I had the flu and then kidney stones over the last 5 weeks LOL! I really do feel like this really is my time to shine!  I am a third of the way to my goal.  I have lost 19% of my body weight and I have lost 29" as of today. I have reduced my insulin dosage by 80%. I am only taking one of the BP medications and hope to be off that by the end of this year. My doctor is very pleased with my current stats and looks forward to seeing my continued progress. I still have have a lot of weight to lose but I you can rest assured that I am going to reach my goals


My goals for this year are :
  • Go to BlogHer in San Diego on Aug. 5-6
  • To reach 100 lbs. loss by BlogHer
  • Zipline and hang out with my long time friend Kari
  • Turn 45 <--- Moi?
  • Get to Onderland by the end of the year (or sooner!)
  • Get to Goal of 150 lbs. lost
I do want to take this opportunity to THANK YOU for all your support and encouragement over the last 2 years.  I really don't believe that I would have gotten this far had it not been for my blog and for you all rooting me on or calling me on my crap as needed. Special thanks to Shelley and Helen for sticking by me even when I wanted to throw in the proverbial towel. You ladies are my heroes and I feel I am a better person for knowing you both!

Now the fun part! I decided to do a giveaway to celebrate my 2nd blogiversary. The giveaway is for:


Here is the product description from Amazon:

The Women's Health Big Book of Exercises is the essential workout guide for anyone who wants a better body. As the most comprehensive collection of exercises ever created, this makeover manual is a body-shaping power tool for both beginners and longtime fitness buffs alike. From start to finish, this 480-page makeover manual bulges with hundreds of useful tips, the latest findings in exercise science, and cutting-edge workouts from the world's top trainers.


Inside The Women's Health Big Book of Exercises you'll find: 619 Exercises!  All expertly demonstrated with color photographs, with dozens of movements for every muscle in your body, including:


* More than 100 core exercises! You'll never run out of ways to sculpt your abs.
* 74 biceps, triceps, and forearm exercises: Tone your arms faster than ever before.
* 64 chest exercises, to burn more calories and even help give your bosom a lift.
* 103 back exercises, to make sure you turn heads in your backless dress.
* 40 shoulder exercises, so you can wear a tank top with confidence.
* 99 quadriceps and calves exercises, to help you look great in a pair of shorts.
* 62 glutes and hamstrings exercises, for the perfect backside.

All you have to do is leave a comment on this post telling me what your favorite form of exercise is. I will add an additional entry if mention the giveaway in one of your posts or if you Tweet or post on Facebook. An additional entry can be made for becoming a new follower if you aren't already.  This giveaway is open to ALL of you, even those of you who are International. I will do the drawing and announce the winner on Wednesday, February 16th. Good luck!!

Thursday, February 10, 2011

Blogiversary Eve

Had a decent day with food yesterday. I got a little snacky in the evening with crackers and therefore have a lower deficit then normal but every day with a deficit is a good day in my book.



I recently got this CD from a Starbuck's Giftcard that I had and it was a lovely way to wake up this morning. I have always loved John Legend and this CD does not dissappoint.  I have an alarm clock that plays CDs, radio or MP3s. It just put a smile on my face to wake up with that playing today :-)  I was wondering do you watch the videos or vlogs that people post? For me, it depends where I am reading the post. If I am at work, then I mark them for review later but if I'm home I watch them.

Do you have trouble swallowing vitamins or large pills? I do and have been searching for vitamins that I could palate and I found these.

They were a little more expensive then the other supplements but if I can be consistent with them then I think they are worth it. They are a little chewy but they soften up.
I just bought a box of Truvia yesterday for the first time. I am a Splenda user but was also intrigued by Truvia since it is natural vs. the chemicals in the other artificial sweeteners. I used it in my coffee this morning and I did notice there was no aftertaste at all. I am going to continue using it and I will let you know what I think.

As I mentioned earlier this week, I have been working on my 2 Year Blogiversary post. It sure has been eye opening to reflect back on 2010. It was a year that will go in the history books for sure! I am also planning on doing a Giveaway to celebrate so please stay tuned for that. Until next time...

Wednesday, February 9, 2011

Random Ramblings

How are you all doing today? I am doing pretty good. I thought it was Thursday when I woke up this morning. Does that ever happen to you? A bit disorienting to say the least. My weigh in will be on Friday no matter what. I think I may be up a few pounds but will lock it in regardless.

White at Night
 I was doing some organizing and purging last night and I walked around the building and saw this beautiful flower that had bloomed. It is a white camellia. Usually they come in pink so it was cool to see it with white blooms. They are known to bloom in late winter/early spring. I have added this photo to my Walk-It 52 page as well.
Speaking of flowers... Over the weekend I went to a garage sale and got myself this sparkly vase for $1 and then bought some carnations at Costco to put in it. I love having flowers in the house and don't necessarily want to wait for someone to buy them for me. Our local farmer's market has some of the best flowers ever!

This is a picture of my dream wedding location as if I will ever get married! It is the Chapel on the grounds of the Grand Wailea hotel in Maui, Hawaii. My friend Sonny is there on business this week and he took this picture for me since he knows I love it.  Pictures just don't do it real justice. Each wall contains an elaborate stained glass window. It is stunning to see with the sun shining through.  Simply amazing! The price for a room there is $369 per night. I have only visited the property but never stayed there. My folks stayed there in the past though and took me there to show me how spectacular it is!

Is it just me or are people getting more reckless with their driving. Seems like now more then ever I am seeing people texting and talking on their phones and speeding while doing so. In fact, just this morning I was going down a residential street on my way to work (7:35 a.m) and it is 25 miles per hour. This woman was on my arse until I lightly tapped the brakes and then she was all sorts of angry with me. All I did was flash a two then a five with my hand and then waved. She was flipping me off and all. Good morning to you too you biotch! LOL!