Monday, January 28, 2013

Weekly Weigh In - Week 4

That 10 pound mark is being elusive!

240.4 this morning. It's 1.9 less than last week and 9.3 pounds total.

I thought for sure I'd hit the 10 pound mark this past week. I was sooooo good with my points!

I honestly think it's the lack of activity. I only got 3 activity points last week.

Today starts a week on the road, again. Thankfully, I'm local (sort of) so I can do breakfast and dinner at home.

I know healthy weight loss is no more than 2 pounds a week, but I still feel like I should be plowing off the weight. But that's just the mindset I have about my weight. It was so easy to put on, why can't it be easy to take off? I think we all feel that way...we work almost 3-4 times more to take off the 5 pounds we put on so easily.

I'm keeping this short as I need to finish getting ready and head out soon. But here are my goals for the week:
2.  Good decisions for food while on the road!

Thanks for keeping up with me.

Happy Monday, all!

Friday, January 25, 2013

Nail Files - Week 56

I may have gone a little picture crazy with this week's nails. Just wanted to get that out there. If you don't want to deal with all of them, that's ok...I take no offense! Just skip on down to the bottom of this post to see the final product.

I found this about a month ago about DIY Nail Stickers (my words) and wanted to give it a try. I did some more research and discovered you could do the lovely marble look with it too. So that is what I went for using these:

Here's the finished product on the ziploc baggie:
The arrow is pointing to the tiny little dot of Riviting that I added for a bit of sparkle

I did this about two weeks ago just to see how it would work on the plastic bag. I liked what I saw so I kept it around for later use.

Sunday (or Monday) I decided to see if I could make it all work. After the polish dries (normally about 2-4 hours, from what I read, or a little longer. A day is recommended if you have time time), it should peel off easily. Mine did. Mine is also a little thicker than it should be as it was my first attempt and I kept having issues with the swirl so I kept adding colors. I don't recommend that!

Once you peel it off, cut it down to the shape of your nail. Since I was only using this as an accent, I only needed two. Obviously if you want more you have to do more. Another recommendation from me on that is do multiple swirls.

Then, paint your nails the color you want to be your base or whatever. I, for some reason, decided to use the white in the above picture. While the nail you want to use is still a little wet, apply your cut form like you would a nail sticker. The slightly wet nail allows it to attach better. I have no pictures for this part, sorry! Then, carefully, trip the edges. I then used some polish remover on an angled eyeliner brush to clean the edges more (as I didn't have anything to cut that close and I wasn't about to lob off a finger tip in the name of fashion). Top with a top coat and TAA-DAAA!!

Here's the finished look for the accent nail (again, the arrow is pointing to the little shimmer of Riviting at the end):

Here's the full look with Pure Ice Super Star on the other nails (not a fan).

Since I wasn't digging the shocking contrast of four white nails and one red/pink nail, I changed it up yesterday:

Much better, to me, with the Sinful Colors Gogo Girl on the other nails.

FYI...I did the white and marble on Sunday or Monday (I can't remember) and the marble "sticker" has kept longer than regular polish on my nail. With the new red on for the weekend, this will be great for family pictures on Sunday.

As always, linking up with:

Happy Friday, y'all!!


Wednesday, January 23, 2013

Birchbox Brag - January 2013

I tend to be a bit of a bandwagon-er. I jumped on the Julep Maven bandwagon last year and have been pleasantly surprised.

I thought I'd give another one a try for 2013. Birchbox! I've seen so many people talk about what they get every month for just $10! So I figured I'd give it a shot. I'm always looking for new beauty products, and I hate spending $$$ only to find out what I got doesn't work for me. This way, I get a trial version of some really cool stuff. And if I like it, I have a place to go to buy it.

FYI - I have not tried any of the products below as I just dug my box out of the mail box today (I really think our postman hates us for the lack of frequency with which we check our mail).

And, I'll be linking up each month to show you what I got:

Here's what I got: 
(all descriptions taken from card insert in box)

 Just a little note from the newbie...I was a little surprised at how small the box actually is. I mean, I know they're samples and all, but for some reason I was picturing a larger box!

 A little feature letter talking about 2013 is going to be the best year ever! It also has product descriptions and prices for full size items on the back.

 All my pretty products lined up in a row!

theBalm® cosmetics Hot Mama Shadow & Blush All-in-One: The universally flattering pigment is laced with gold shimmer to warm up your complexion.
*personally - looks a little too peachy/pale orange for me...but I have yet to try it*

Harvey Prince Skinny Chic - 50ml:  Get a glass-half-full disposition with the optimistic blend of jicy Meyer lemon, white grapefruit, and pink plumeria
*personally - smells pretty fresh and springy. Also, the card it comes on has a "slightly" different description:  "Sexy, zesty, and burstin with energy. Skinny Chic is your daily cure fot he common bore. A sprtiz a day keeps you feeling young, slim, and beautiful. Crisp Green Apple, Sweet Mint, and Warm Amber." I am no connoisseur of perfume, but those are two different style smells...and I can't really place which one this is. But so far, I like it. Once it's actually on my skin, that will be the true test for this.

My™ Multi-Purpose Mattifying Moisturizer:  Rich with pili and morninga oils, this healthy moisturizer gives skin a velvety matte finish that lasts all day
*personally - I've never heard of a matte moistuizer. I'm kind of looking forward to trying this. Downside - no SPF*
amika Color pHerfection Shampoo:  This gentle shampoo contains fortifying omega acids and healing sea buckthorn berry oil to keep your hair color bright and shiny.
*personally - this is another product I'm looking forward to trying as someone without natural hair color*

Deborah Lippmann the Stripper to go:  These sweetly scented nail polish remover mitts make changing lacquer a breeze
*personally - these will be coming in handy in a couple days when I decide to switch things up!*

This was just a cute little extra. Unfold it for list of 25 things to do to make 2013 better (or awesome, as the poster implies). Just some fun, and some serious, things to do to help make a bit of a difference in your life. For example: 1 - Don't swear off carbs; 5 - Eat breakfast; 11 - Get social (aka, twitter and/or FaceBook); 15 - leave your desk; 25 - Smile.

There you have first, ever, Birchbox!

If you'd like to look around, and maybe sign up, use this link. Just a quick note, if you decide to do Birchbox, your email will be put on a wait list. I did my request in December and got my approval in time for this months box. The website says wait time is 3-4 weeks, which was right on for me. It is also like Julep in I can cancel any time with no penalties. That is what made me most happy about trying this out!

Once you're "in", you'll fill out a survey about who you are style wise and what you're looking for. I'm already looking forward to next month! 

Wednesday just got a little brighter. 

So What Wednesday

I'm just going to get right into this! 

So What If:

* I woke up annoyed at the world today. I was wide awake at 6:37 AM...I usually don't have to get up til 7:30 AM.

* The morning training session from work, the reason I was up so early, was 47 minutes of my life I will never get back! Seriously, why are you telling us things that are in the new-hire packet of information? We all know this stuff! Not to mention the audio issues so those of us logging in remotely could hardly hear a word said the entire time.

* My name was left of the powerpoint list of employees in my department for said meeting this morning. I've only been there a year and 4 months. Not to mention the 9 years 9 months I've been with the company overall.

* I seek "acceptance" by recognition of how long I've been at my job. Lame, I know. But it's the mindset I'm in today. Besides, I hate when people who have been here less time than me treat me like I'm the new kid.

* I get SUPER annoyed when I've worked so hard and no one seems to care.

* I think I worked more muscles last night playing Disneyland Adventures on the Xbox Kinect than, well, it's been a while since those muscles were worked. Who knew sledding and snowball fights against Abominable Snowmen would be such a workout?

* I had to Google how to spell Abominable.

So What Wednesday

What are you saying so what to this week? Come share/vent with the rest of us!

Happy Hump Day! I'm going for more coffee....

Tuesday, January 22, 2013

Buffalo Chicken Cupcakes

First, I am so very sorry that three weeks after saying I'd post this I am finally posting.

Second, I cannot take credit for this recipe. It is the work of this site. (see the button at the end of the blog)

Third, the pictures here ARE mine as this is my attempt/version of the recipe.

Here we go!!

What you need:
2 C boneless, skinless chicken breast - cooked and chopped small
3 T Buffalo Wing Sauce (I used Franks brand)
1/2 a celery stalk - chopped small (I used my Ninja Prep Master)
1 C reduced fat 2% shredded cheddar cheese
16 Wonton Wrappers (varies where you'll find them at the store, but try the produce section or where the cold "ethnic" foods are)

Here's what you do:

Cook your chicken. I boiled mine as there were no specific instructions given for cooking it and this was the fastest way I could think of.

(When it's done, remove it from the water and let it cool down some before chopping.)

Preheat the oven to 375. Lightly mist 8 cups of a muffin tin with cooking spray and set aside.

Chop your celery stick (again, I used my Ninja Prep Master...because IT. IS. THE. BOMB!)
Put Buffalo Sauce and celery in a bowl and mix.

Chop up the cooked chicken small and add it to the celery and buffalo sauce. Mix well so that chicken pieces are coated nicely.

Layer the eight muffin cups with a single wanton wrapper.

Add a spoonful of the chicken mix.

Add a layer of the cheddar cheese (use your judgement on how much as you only have a cup to work with).

Layer another wonton wrapper.

Repeat the chicken and cheese layers.
Bake in oven for 18-20 minutes.

*I increased the recipe to use the last of the chicken I had on hand...not quite double, but more than the regular size. That is why there are more than 8 cupcakes here*

**the original recipe calls for four Laughing Cow Blue Cheese Wedges to be in the celery sauce mix. But Blue Cheese isn't a favorite in this house, and I couldn't find it, so I did without**

The original recipe has a serving as one cupcake with 4 points each. Without the blue cheese, however, the points value for my recipe is only 3.

These have husbands approval, which is a wonderful thing when you're trying to cook healthy! They are also great snack foods and would be perfect for game day, or something similar.

 Here's another link to the original website:


Monday, January 21, 2013

Weekly Weigh In - Week 3

I have lost a total of 7.4 pounds! I am down to 242.3!

It may seem crazy to count to the tenth. But when you see only a three tenths come off the scale from one day to the next, it give that motivation to work a little bit harder and be better at doing what need to be done to see more weight come off.

Last week was a horrific struggle for me! For those who don't know me IRL, I represent an online university. I have a home office in Southern California and I cover the majority of the Western United States as my territory for travel during the year. Last week was my first official week "on the road". In this past, travel time has been my down fall. It was my biggest issue the last time I did Weight Watchers. Yes, I can find foods that keep my at my points for the day. But I always found myself with no time to stop and eat properly. Part of it is poor planning on my part. Part of is keeping my busy schedule so I feel like I'm doing my job and not slacking off. All of it equaled to failed attempts at healthy eating on the road.

This past week was almost the same. I had a craving on Monday and gave in. Sonic. Bad mistake - it cost me the majority of my points before noon! But it also made me reevaluate how I do things. When I'm in my home territory, I can pack a lunch full of things that are good to eat and low in points.

I bought a collapsible and insulated lunch bag Tuesday. This will fit neatly in my suitcase for when I'm really out of town. Depending on the hotel, I can stock my fridge with stuff to do the same - pack my lunch for the day. And if I don't have a fridge in the room, I can just buy my lunches from the grocery store. A lot carry ready-made salads in the produce section. Then I don't have to worry about splitting my points between lunch and dinner.

I also need to do some research about restaurants in the areas I'm going to be in. Most of the places I go have decent to larger populations so there will be plenty of "chain" restaurants to choose from. I would love to branch out more, but between not everywhere accepting my work CC and wanting to stay on track, I am okay with keeping it "boring".

As I'm typing this, I realize that all the things I've listed above as things I'm going to do are things I should have been doing the last time I tried this. I think my biggest issue was I just didn't have the motivation to keep with it. I lost the 10 pounds I wanted for my wedding. My dress fit perfectly. I was comfortable. And that was all I cared about. Not this time. I not only want to lose the weight, I want to keep it off. And I want to start having a healthier lifestyle.

My goal for this week is activity points. This was another downfall to last week - I only had 2 activity points! I have two new work out "games" that I need to use. I would like to get 10 activity points this week.

I'm on the road again next week, locally. So I will also be trying to focus on things for next week's lunches.

Happy Monday!

Saturday, January 19, 2013

The Nail Files

This past week I was out and about locally for work. My hours were crazy and I just wasn't in the mood for blogging (gasp!). But I did do my nails, as they looked horrible going into Monday and I couldn't go out with un-professional looking nails.

So I kept it simple:

Glass Pink by Sinful Colors

It's a shimmery, PALE pink that is great for the subtle look. It's, honestly, not one of my favorites. But it's good for the weeks I have to deal with students and other professionals.

FYI, to those that wonder why I tone down the colors when I'm on the road for work...I had a colleague tell me he didn't think my navy blue nails were very professional looking once. And since he was kind of a manager, at the time, I figured I should listen. Anyway, it's just kind of stuck with me even though I know there are TONS of professional ladies out there that rock the dark colors or the mixed colors or the fun looks.

What are your thoughts on "professional" looking nails?

Come join up with the rest of us who want to brag about our manicures:

Happy weekend!

Monday, January 14, 2013

Weekly Weigh In - Week 2

I am so excited! I have hit the 5 pounds lost mark!  WOOT WOOT!!

Today's weigh in was exactly 244. That is 5.7 pounds down from when I started. It also means my daily points allotment has decreased.

On to what worked and what didn't work this week.

Most of the days, I had points left over. Four out of 7 days, that is. Tuesday, Saturday, and Sunday I went over my points. Tuesday because I cooked some of the bacon Mr S received in his first shipment of his Bacon Of The Month Club (Christmas gift from his dad & step-mom). That stuff is NOT diet friendly! And then the weekends are always hard for me. We aren't that great at meal planning for weekends. We're both off and we both kind of see it as two "come what may" days. Again, NOT a diet friendly attitude to have.

I did, kind of, meet my goal of last week for more activity points. I managed to get 6. Unfortunately, I only did two work outs last week. I need to do more than that if I'm going to really do this properly.

Creating my own activity will be helpful. We purchased an XBox 360 with Kinect just before Christmas. I am really enjoying Dance Central. I also just purchased Dance Central 2 and a work out "game". I kind of like using the Xbox to work out with. So far it doesn't really feel like I'm working out.

When an activity, like Dance Central, is not listed on the activity list, there is a guide for creating your own based on intensity and time performed. Low intensity means you don't break a sweat, you can talk/sing, and your breathing is regular. Moderate intensity means you can talk but not sing, your breathing is often and deep, and you begin to sweat after 10 minutes of the activity. And high intensity means you can talk briefly but not sing, your breathing is rapid and deep, and you begin sweating after 3 to 5 minutes. Depending on the songs I choose, Dance Central is a Low to Moderately Intense work out for me.

What I really need to do is get on the treadmill in the fitness room for the complex we live in. I just hate going alone. And I get SO BORED just walking and listening to music. I have TV shows I've downloaded to work out with, that's how bored I get. I've tried audiobooks, random music (fast and slow), and podcasts. Nothing really holds my attention. The TV Shows aren't that great, but they give me something to focus on rather than looking out the window.

Goal for the week:  Figure out how to travel and be "good". Today was a bad day. I decided to do Sonic for lunch...and that took all but 4 of my points! So I'm trying to figure out how I'm doing dinner tonight. I'm leaning towards a large, green salad and/or a lot of fruit for me. Mr S will just have to fend for himself. But I need to figure out how to do this, especially when I'm not local like I am this week. Because being out on the road is what's done me in last time, and I don't want that to be my downfall this time.


(I have to remind myself of this when I only do 20 minutes of work out)

Well, that's all for today. Tomorrow I'll be posting a recipe (the one I was going to post last week and forgot to do). It's a healthy, good to eat, husband approved recipe. And, with the Super Bowl coming up, it's a great one for game day.

Happy Monday!

Friday, January 11, 2013

The Nail Files

Well, as promised, here is what I got in my Julep Maven box:

 I love the little quote cards the put each month. I have them on a picture board by my bed.  

These are the latest hair-tie craze. They, supposedly, don't kink your hair when in a ponytail. I've not really noticed, either way. But I have noticed a definite lack of hair wrapped around it when I pull it out of my hair. That is an accomplishment for me!

 The theme this month is Neon colors.

 I opted to stay with my "Classic with a Twist" box as I am not a huge fan of neon. These were much more subdued for me. The coral, aka Madison, will be great in the summer, especially on the toes!

 And this shot includes my add-ons...the white in the middle, aka Eileen, and some extra swatch stickers (to help with polish organization/selection). Oh, and the pink box is a Hand & Cuticle Stick. Honestly, I'm not sure what it really does other than make my fingers greasy.

 So here's what I did - Eileen as a base. Then a Madison flower with a little Grace and Eileen center

Here are all three colors. The far left is Grace and she's a sheer pink. I have way to many colors like this and probably won't get much use from her. 

I didn't go all crazy this week with my nails. However, I've had success with how long they've last this round. I did my nails on Monday and I've only had a little chipping on three finger tips. That makes me very happy, cause I can't keep a manicure very long unless it's gel polish or professionally done fakes.

Anyway, come show off your nails with the rest of us: