Thursday, March 31, 2016

Hump Day recap

It's the last day of the heck did that happen?

Yesterday was a pretty good day.

The Mr was good enough to take care of some rental car stuff and we ended up getting $300 back on our pre-paid reservations.  The woman said the rates went down since we booked so if you pre-pay reservations, it might be worth giving them a ringy dingy before you go to see if you've got money coming back to you.  How often does that ever happen? 

I was trying to work ahead and be productive so I was glad to happen upon a stash of posts I apparently wrote then never hit publish on.  Derp!  I started using a product I'll be reviewing in a few weeks so we'll see how that pans out.  

I noticed that yesterday was going to likely be the only nice day the rest of the week and given I was feeling a little sore, I thought I'd switch around the exercise program.  So it was just me, the Mr and the turkeys in the park...

It was coincidence that it was actually Walk in the Park Day so I'll pretend I knew that before we went.  So today we'll do the upper body I had planned for yesterday.  We had tacos and roasted carrots for dinner.

We've been doing very well on eating slow this week.  The other thing I need to improve on is getting in my water way earlier.  I'm not getting my last bottle in until 9-10pm and you can imagine that doesn't make for a good night's sleep.  Is that why they call it the "wee hours?"

Have you ever gotten back unexpected money?  How many bathroom trips (if any) do you make a night?

Like this post? Don't miss another one...subscribe via email or RSS feed. (Or you can follow me on Facebook )

Wednesday, March 30, 2016

Even the plus size man gets the screws

When you're planning a trip to the islands, you need island attire.  I'm not talking a whole new wardrobe of loud aloha shirts and palm tree pants but a nice outfit for dinner is mandatory.  Island wear is a staple this time of year and the market gets flooded with the newest tropical inspired shirts from places like Tommy Bahama for Nordstrom to Walmart.

The Mr, like many of us, is one of those people that is one size up top and another size on the bottom and since most tropical shirts are button up, it can be irritating to find something that fits right.  More to the point, something that will fit right at the beginning and the end of a trip.  Because we go to the islands for multiple weeks...almost a month this time, our bodies are just riddled with bloat for all kinds of reasons.  Mostly sodium, also not drinking water as usual and just being off kilter from jet lag, weird wake and bed times.  By the time the body gets used to it, you're heading back home.  So clothes that are more fitted or button ups that fit at the beginning of a trip may throw up the white flag by the middle to end of it.

I got my dress for our anniversary dinner and because it's a maxi dress, it fits well because it's basically a drape ala Carol Burnett.  "I saw it in the winda and I just couldn't resist it."  When I got mine in and tried it on, it got the Mr wanting a new shirt too.  So I looked high and low for something that was appropriate for island fancy dinners but not so loud it screamed tourist.  After 14 trips there, you see what the noobs wear vs. the locals.  I found this really cool pattern at Macy's and sent the link to the Mr to see what he thought.  He loved the black and the grey so they'd be subtle but dressy.

We always like to order talls because when your stomach is the issue, they seem to like to make button ups shorter and it can ride up.  So we started with the grey 2XLT.  We knew XLT might be fine the first few days but Hawaiian food is all about salt whether it's loco moco or broiled fish and by week three he'd be without a nice shirt.  Well the pattern was nice but he was swimming in it!  It was ridiculous!  Because there was so much room, we wondered if we should've just gotten the XLT.  So I saw the black was available in that and ordered it to see what we were working with.

Well, here...

He's firmly between sizes.  My heart broke for him because neither of these is going to work and while I thought about having the bigger shirt altered, we both agreed that we shouldn't have to alter a brand new shirt.  So he sent them back and I ordered a plain ol' 2X to see if that fits.  I've got my fingers crossed it does because we both really like the shirt.  If it doesn't fit, I have no clue where we're going to find something that isn't $140 like Tommy Bahama or something like that and we both think that is ridiculous for a shirt.

Of course do you think they carry these shirts in their damn store so he could try them on???  Nope.  Just like Old Navy and plenty of other stores, they have no problem selling to you online and offering you free returns but don't come browse in our actual stores.  What's the matter, think we're going to eat your skinny patrons for a snack?

So see ladies...'plus size' men feel our pain too.

Do you have to play the "mail back the plus sized clothes that don't fit" game because the store won't carry plus sizes?  If so, call out the store in the comments.  Our money spends just the same as everyone else!

Like this post? Don't miss another one...subscribe via email or RSS feed. (Or you can follow me on Facebook )

Friday, March 25, 2016

What I'm Reading This Week 2016 #12

I've got no snazzy intro so let's just jump right in, shall we?

5 Proven Ways to Lower Your Cholesterol    (Good stuff)

Ask Ann: Why Am I Having Sharp Shoulder Pain?  (Yep, this is partly what I'm recovering from)

Overlooked and Underappreciated: How to Use the Rowing Machine  (Got some good tips from my chiro but these about cover them as well)

Which Type of Milk (or Nondairy Milk) Is Best? The PROs and CONs of 9 Different Kinds  (Good info)

10 Signs It's More Than Just Stress  (Oh...crap.)

Teddy the Timid Poop  (Hilarious!)

Dear Tracy Anderson: STOP  (Gotta say, this took some nads to write)

Five Health Benefits of Hot Chocolate  (Courtesy of the Mr.  I think he wants to make sure our Sunday night hot cocoa habit isn't going anywhere)

Keep Your Brain Sharp With the New MIND Diet  (Looks like I'm already following most of it!)

Hulk Hogan Exclusive: Wrestling Legend Overwhelmed by Victory in Gawker Lawsuit  (Overwhelmingly in support of this verdict.  Other people's sex lives are none of our business and disguising it as "news" is pathetic)

David Letterman Is Balding, Bearded and Looking as Happy as Ever in St. Barts  (That's great if you don't want to shave and all but for the love of God, stop chewing on whatever is turning your teeth that color!)

See How Daisy Ridley Smoothly Turned Down a Fan Who Asked Her to His Spring Formal  (Love this!)

These White Chocolate Strawberries Are the Cutest Easter Dessert  (Ahhh, so adorable!  I'm doing this next Easter!)

Donut Bunny Pops  (Double ahhh!  Doing these too, except with mini pretzel sticks instead of toothpicks, that's just asking for trouble with my people)

Seth Rogen's Newest Movie Trailer (NSFW.  In case you don't know what that means...not safe for work.  I'll repeat it one more time...not. safe. for. work!  If you're offended by strong language, don't even think of clicking on it!  Now that that's out of the way, if nothing else, it makes me want to go on a water diet for fear of killing all of the cute little food families and couples!)

It's Easter weekend!  I've got a hollow Lindt dark chocolate bunny with mah name on it!  I've got 2 banana cream pies to make tomorrow night and then Sunday morning I'll make my homemade mac and cheese.  I got some good mixes of sharp cheddar and havarti and fun Easter pasta shapes to appeal to the kiddies.  (Who am I kidding, I want to eat them for mahself too!)

What are you guys doing this weekend?

Like this post? Don't miss another one...subscribe via email or RSS feed. (Or you can follow me on Facebook )

Thursday, March 24, 2016

Maui dreamin' and mind blown

Yesterday I talked to my friend on Maui about setting up a massage at our place.  She got certified since I saw her last and said she'd travel on the island if I didn't want to come to the homestead.  It's not that I don't want to go there but we've got an oceanfront condo and doing one out on the lanai 7 floors up as the ocean laps below sounds pretty friggin' good to me!

I also started looking through geocaches to do on vacation.  If you guys don't know what geocaching is, it's like a treasure hunt of sorts.  You're given coordinates to a place of interest anywhere in the world and it can take you to some fun off the beaten path places both locally and out of town.  (Go to to learn more if you're interested in a fun, family friendly activity!)

I think I found some fun ones on Maui to do including this one.  Kind of irritating to think 4 years ago I knew about that cache and was this close to it.

Oh well, we'll get it this time...I hope.

The Mr had a headache when he got home and he took some aspirin and fell asleep on the couch.  Then when he woke up, I was tired so I made him give me a glute massage to unkink the muscle tightness that was yesterday's leg day.  We did Turbo Fire and had jalapeno salmon burger and potato wedges for dinner.

We caught up on the DVR and that included the latest episode of The People vs. O.J. Simpson.  Y'all want a fun tidbit I discovered last night?  As I was admiring the behavior of the older black juror lady with the glasses, I couldn't help but think of what a lovely job they did casting her.  I don't know that they ever called her by name but she just had sweet eyes and looked so familiar to me.  I went on to see what else she was in.  Her name is Susan Beaubian and I was reading through her past jobs and then I got to one that made me yell "holy crap!" especially when I saw this picture...

That's her on the right...with O.J. Simpson.  She was his WIFE in The Naked Gun: From the Files of Police Squad! (affiliate link)  and now she's a star juror in the movie based on O.J.'s trial.  The Mr and I were like...


Then it got blown again when we found out Shemar Moore friggin' left Criminal Minds!  I had to just stop watching everything because I can't afford to lose that much more brain matter after those two things.

What fun activities do you like to do on vacation to keep things interesting?  Any TV shows blow your mind lately?

Like this post? Don't miss another one...subscribe via email or RSS feed. (Or you can follow me on Facebook )

Wednesday, March 23, 2016

Appreciating the pioneers

It's Hump Dayyyyyy!

It was a pretty low key day.

We came in late on this amazing series on NatGeo called Generation X.  The Mr and I were kids during this period and we learned so much because when you're a kid, you take certain things for granted or don't pay attention.  We binge watched the episodes we missed.  Honestly,  I didn't even know that Generation X is considered from 1961-1981, I thought it was like 1970-1984.  I didn't know that the ERA never passed.  I didn't know that in 1961, Estelle Griswold who helped married couples obtain birth control through Planned Parenthood was actually charged and went to trial.

The thought that I could've been married to the Mr and our decision not to have children would've meant sex would involve homemade condoms with saran wrap and a scrunchie or everything but intercourse is just mind blowing.  I didn't realize how dangerously close I was to still be seriously oppressed.  I know many still consider women oppressed but in comparison to any time before the 1970's in America...not so much.  I am super grateful for pioneers in the women's lib movement that allow me to make decisions that relate to my body and what I can do with it as a grown ass married woman!  I also respect those women who didn't want that change to come into their lives and were perfectly happy with the men being head of household and them playing a supporting role.  I think people should be able to live the lives they choose.  As far as we know, we only get one so live it in appreciation for those before you who paved the way for you to have choices...even if the person next to you doesn't like or make the same choice.  Sorry, I don't like to get all political or anything like that but man, if you get the chance, watch that series online.  It truly makes you appreciate so many aspects of life we take for granted.  I always like to learn more about a time I was alive but just not old enough to comprehend what was going on around me.


We did a killer lower body workout and man did I feel it pretty immediately.  Walking today should be "fun."  But at least it was Taco Tuesday...

Do you like to learn about modern history to better understand grown up issues of your childhood?

Like this post? Don't miss another one...subscribe via email or RSS feed. (Or you can follow me on Facebook )

Tuesday, March 22, 2016

Baby steps to recovery

Happy Tuesday everyone!

I went to the chiro yesterday.  It's been a week since my last treatment and I told him it was his lucky day because my legs were acting up too.  Thank God I shaved the forest with the John Deere the day before!  He looked at the legs first and felt around and hit a few knots and he's like "wow, this one is bruised a little" and I said "uh yeah, that's where I tried to exercise the demon with the roller, I failed."  He's like "yeah. I'd call that one a demon!"  When he was doing the knot release he was going a little light for my liking and when he got to "Bruiser", I said not to be afraid of digging or hurting me and he's like "I think you already did that...I'll laser it."  I don't care dude, just get rid of it.  I'm about to dress it, put a wig on it and qualify for the carpool lane.

He moved on to the shoulder, said I was right on schedule and then amended to say actually ahead of schedule.  He said the piano key affect is almost gone and only had one "key" left and pressed on the area.  I told him about how there was soreness in the back of the shoulder especially after the two upper body strength sessions.  I confessed I did flies Sunday night but with 8 pounds and when they felt too irritating, I went half range or dropped the weight altogether.  He smiled and asked how it felt.  I told him of all of the moves I did, that one was the most irritating but the next day I wasn't sore there but in the back.  He said all of that was good to hear and from what I said and the way it feels, it's progressing nicely.  I asked if there were any strength building exercises he recommended and he said everything I'm doing should help strengthen it so just continue on, go easy on flies weight wise and come back in a week.  I'm down with that!  Actually the Mr and I both go back the same day next week.  I'm a little concerned about his back and forth on progress.  The doc assured me that he's passing all of the range of motion tests he's doing and that's good.  But I think this TENS unit he got is actually doing more harm than good at this point.  When he gets really sore, he'll do it, it'll feel like he doesn't have a problem at all and then the following three days are sore almost to a detriment.  I think I'm going to hide it until he's totally healed.  I want him to be able to feel his true measure of soreness and not mask it.  He needs to ice and ultrasound and move forward with a true gauge of what he feels.

Baby steps, y'all.  So funny..when I typed that my shoulder twinged in pain.  Don't make me throw the ice pack back on, you little bastardo!

We did our workout of Fitness Blender HIIT and then had some orange fish over spinach polenta.

The Mr was really feeling the workout and I am a worried mama bear.  We both iced and hopefully he will feel better today or at least increasingly better as the week moves on.

He just put on O Tannenbaum from A Charlie Brown Christmas.  He knows how to make me schmile.

Do your injuries typically heal up on schedule or feel like two steps forward, one step back?

Like this post? Don't miss another one...subscribe via email or RSS feed. (Or you can follow me on Facebook )

Monday, March 21, 2016

Welcome Spring...hand me the winter coat

Happy Monday all!

The Mr worked basically two shifts Thursday so he took Friday off since he was up until 4am that morning.  It was the last day before a cold front set in so we wanted to take the opportunity to do our first three miler of the season.

The ducks were enjoying the mild weather...

We enjoyed some beautiful blooms on the trees.  Sadly they were already starting to fall so I'm hoping they stick around at least a week or two so we can enjoy them.

Saturday wasn't a great day for me and sadly, I took some of it out on the Mr.  I declared holding puppies was in order.

He did make me feel better.  He was a rescue runt but once they brought his brother in, that sweet little face morphed into a seething bastard that didn't like his brother playing with his toy.  The dog went Tyson and bit his brothers ear, clamped down and would not let go even after he sent an Earth shattering yelp that echoed through the store and had everyone looking at us like we dropped them or something.  Literally ten people from employees to patrons ran over and even though they could see the dog was being a shit, they gave us the side eye.  That was just icing on the cake to my day.  I can't even hold puppies without it going into the crapper.

Sunday the Mr and I talked, we had brunch and discussed our new Easter plans which now have us all going to Grandma's house because apparently she is so wobbly on her feet that her husband doesn't think he can handle shuttling her over anymore.  I was so furious because it is evident she needs to go in a facility.  I get you all want to honor her desire to not go into one but come on...he is 85, has bad knees that need surgery and in addition to everything else now he has to deal with her not being able to walk?!  Did I mention that a few months ago she plopped on the floor when my mom was watching her and refused to move and mom couldn't lift her?  Yeah, so I'm going to have to take some kind of sleeping aid to just be doped out of my mind because I don't know if I can hold my tongue...especially if I end up having spiky hormone issues.  Every time I've brought it up, I get how "when it gets worse" it'll happen.  How much worse does it need to get!?

Anyhoo...  the Mr finished rebuilding our desktop computer.  I'm thrilled because we were able to get a case that instead of being a beast that took up leg room where the chair went now fits under the desk drawers!

I know it was a major pain in the butt Saturday night but I'm so thankful the Mr put his superior techie skills to work to give up a totally updated system that will handle 4K video production now.  Thanks Mr!

How did you guys ring in Spring?

Like this post? Don't miss another one...subscribe via email or RSS feed. (Or you can follow me on Facebook )

Friday, March 18, 2016

What I'm Reading This Week 2016 #11

Wee ha, it's finally Friday!

Did you all imbibe in St. Patty's Day festivities yesterday?  The closest we got to celebrating was eating brussels sprouts.  But enough of my Erin Go Braughless lack of celebration and get to...

14 Beautiful Pantries That Will Give You Organization Goals  (Good ideas!)

Splenda is officially bad for you  (Well this is seriously unsettling on many levels)

6 Nighttime Steps That Keep Skin Wrinkle-Free  (Too late)

Maple syrup isn’t just delicious, it also could cure Alzheimer’s disease  (Bring on the flapjacks!  Oh wait, they didn't say flapjacks prevented Alz)

Which Is Better: Wild-Caught or Farmed Fish?  (I always go for wild but the farming people better clean up their acts)

10 Ways to Squeeze Furniture Into Small Spaces  (Absolutely LOVE the Skinny Console!  *looks around for a spare wall*)

Let Her Sleep In! Women Need More Sleep Than Men, Says Science  (Halle to the luyer!  I already knew this though)

We Tried 10 Chocolate Easter Bunnies So You Don't Have To  (I've got a Lindt hollow bunny this year.  I remember the disappointment one or two Easters opening that cheap bunny they mention.  When a fat kid refuses to eat a bunny, there's a problem)

Budget-Friendly Ways to Fill an Easter Basket  (Fun suggestions!)

7 Ways to Prepare for Spring Cleaning  (Still got more to do!)

This Sweet Husband Spent the Past 5 Years Illustrating How Much He Loves His Wife  (Aww, this is so sweet!  I love the monster one...that seems to be me this week with my hormonal week deciding to rearrange itself)

50 Powerful Photos From The O.J. Simpson Murder Trial  (For those who didn't actually watch it while it was going on in 1995, DO NOT take what the TV show is spewing as gospel.  It's a well done TV series but no one involved in the case was consulted and liberties are being taken for entertainment purposes.)

Gwen Stefani Climbs Back From the Abyss  (Her new album (affiliate link)  drops today!  WOO HOO!)

My final link comes with a picture.  I saw these super cute free printables and made some tags and signs for an Easter platter I'm putting together.  Couple it with some cute bakers twine and look how cute!

If you want to get in on the action, click here.

I don't think we have any real plans for the weekend.  It's supposed to be colder (seasonal) so hopefully that'll mean people aren't roaming around and we can enjoy some outside time.

What are you doing this weekend?

Like this post? Don't miss another one...subscribe via email or RSS feed. (Or you can follow me on Facebook )

Thursday, March 17, 2016

Trader Joe's Organic Black Bean Rotini

Every few weeks, Trader Joe's likes to introduce new products by putting them on an end cap.  That also makes me nervous because when they bring new stuff in is when they yank old favorites.  As I was perusing the latest adds, I saw this.

What really intrigued me was when I read the nutritional information.

That is 14g of protein  and 15g of fiber per serving!  This is a no grain pasta so I'm thinkin' you paleo peeps could use this?   The only thing that scared me was the email I got from TJ's the next day describing this as "a great tasting pasta with terrifically toothy texture."  Toothy eh?  That's like when people describe something as "earthy."  It gets my Spidey senses spiked to be suspicious.

So I cooked it for 9 minutes (they recommend 8-10 minutes) and put it in a bowl.

I didn't care for the gummy texture so I put it back in a strainer and ran it under cold water to rinse that off and it was acceptable.

Now I had to throw together some stuff that we had on hand that I thought would compliment it.  I rarely have this but was glad I did.

I boiled up 8 ounces of chicken and sprinkled with ground chipotle pepper.

In addition to that, I added 2 tablespoons of poblano salsa.

I gave it all a goodly toss and put it in a dish to warm up after our workout.

I warmed it up covered at 400 for about 20 minutes.  The Mr dug in and I thought he was going to rocket to the ceiling.  His eyes lit up and he started raving at how much he loved it.  Well, I guess I don't need to ask if he wants to buy it again!

It does taste exactly like black beans because well, it is black beans.  I think it really lends itself to Mexican cuisine.  They try to pair it up with marinara sauce but after having tried it, I think that would be kind of gross.  Just ask yourself if you'd pour pasta sauce over black beans because that's what it would taste like.  Anything that pairs well with black beans would do well with this pasta.

So let your creativity come forward and get some extra protein with a nice "toothy" pasta!

Have you tried TJ's black bean rotini?

Like this post? Don't miss another one...subscribe via email or RSS feed. (Or you can follow me on Facebook )

Wednesday, March 16, 2016

Planning is cramping my neck

Happy Hump Day!

I started doing a little vacation planning yesterday.  Well, I guess perusing Yelp wouldn't be considered vacation planning by most but I like to have options regardless of the parts of the islands we're going to be in.  It really sucks because Hawaii has a relatively high turnover on restaurants so our favorites either close or take a nosedive.  I'm super sad because one of the restaurants a friend of ours owns is getting really crappy reviews lately and I think unless he's with us, we're going to have to skip it.  We don't have 1-2 hours to waste sitting around waiting for food on vacay.  How do you tactfully ask "why aren't you doing anything about the crappy reviews for your restaurant?" without offending someone?

I think I spent like 3-4 hours going through different towns we'd be staying in, visiting websites, looking at menus and deciding whether or not to bookmark something for us to try.  I had to stop going through it all because the ringing in my ears (my newest stress signal) was getting loud.

We went down and started our Tae Bo workout.  I was looking forward to it until 20 minutes in, the tension in my neck and shoulders must've let loose because I had an insane flood of headache pain.  About 10 minutes later, I had to have the Mr get me some aspirin because I didn't trust I could walk up the stairs to get it.  By the end of the workout, it seemed like maybe it was letting up and honestly, I can't believe I made it through the whole thing.  I jumped in the shower thinking the heat on my shoulders would kick it to the curb.  It didn't.  I tried a new massage thingy I got and it didn't work long term because I need an elbow in the shoulders to release the hell.  Within 20 minutes it was back full force.  Sigh.  So my night was filled with head splitting pain.

I figured since aspirin didn't work, maybe a dumb comedy would help in the form of Sisters.  (affiliate link) 

I was about 25 minutes into it and almost ejected it but it thankfully picked up.  I was surprised to see the mom and dad from Life in Pieces were the parents in this movie.  (Dianne Weist and James Brolin)  I absolutely loved the character of James and when he deals with a ballerina issue, I laughed so hard my head throbbed and I didn't even care.  I'd say wait until it comes out on Redbox April 12th.  It was funny but I don't know if it was $3-5 rental funny.

Unfortunately it didn't do anything to calm my head so I went into the rest of the night and to bed with that bastard headache.  I'm hoping it doesn't follow me into today.

Would you mention reviews of someone's business to the owner when their reputation is suffering? (IE:  "So, do you ever Yelp your restaurant?" (knowing he doesn't) and hope he checks after your encounter.")

(This post contains an affiliate link)
Like this post? Don't miss another one...subscribe via email or RSS feed. (Or you can follow me on Facebook )

Tuesday, March 15, 2016

Lethal cookies and on the mend

Howdy do all!

I accidentally slept in yesterday.  I heard the Mr get up and the next thing I knew, I was selling Girl Scout cookies to Riggs and Murtaugh telling them I made six figures only working three months out of the year.  If only!

But I will take that dream over the one the day before anytime, thankyouverymuch!

I went to the chiro yesterday and he said while he still feels adhesions, the shoulder is beginning to heal.  I can add back in small amounts of upper body but absolutely no flies because it could set me back.  The Mr went later in the day and he was told he's pretty much cleared to his own comfort level.  That actually kind of surprised me because his range of motion is still pretty crappy.  I go back in a week and he goes back in two weeks.

We did lower body and HIIT last night and I threw in a few bicep curls to test the waters and I did okay.  I was still a bit on the tight side a few hours later but he said doing the cross friction massage he does on me will help break things up in there.  I was just glad to see I could do push ups off the knees because a few weeks ago that would've hurt.  I knew enough that when I saw walk downs as one of the exercises, I had to do something else in its place.  I must say, I'm really itching to get back into some good upper body but I'm not going to jeopardize my healing process so I'll have to bide my time.

Dinner was homemade Chinese food that I was so excited to eat I forgot to take a picture of it.  Oops!  After that we took care of some business stuff then had the battle rounds of The Voice on in the background.

Pretty low key on our end!

Have you imbibed in Girl Scout cookies this season like Riggs and Murtaugh?  If so, what are your faves?

Like this post? Don't miss another one...subscribe via email or RSS feed. (Or you can follow me on Facebook )

Friday, March 11, 2016

What I'm Reading This Week 2016 #10

It's been a long, achy week but it's finally Friday!!

I've been an icing, ultra sounding, chiro laser zapping fool to speed heal this sprain.  Apparently it doesn't like my choice of cardio this week (Turbo Fire and Power 90) but it's just gonna have to suck it because I can't just walk every day with the rain and the chiro said as long as it doesn't cause me pain as I'm doing it, I'm okay.  So I try to ice as soon as I get up and right after a workout, then I'll ultra sound before bed.  I just can't wait to sleep on my right side again.  I'm trying to stay off that side but as the Mr can attest, it is hard.  The problem is when he rolls on his right side, he rolls over me.

But enough of the household shoulder woes, let's get to...

18 Science-Backed Ways to Lose More Weight  (Agree with many of these but I'm sorry this bod consistently burns 25% LESS calories during morning workouts.  Workout when you know you will, not when an article tells you to)

For Scott Kelly, being back on Earth isn’t all it’s cracked up to be  (The Mr and I wondered what effects he'd have after so long up there.  Some are really surprising!)

3 Exercises to Substitute for Burpees  (I typically do a sumo squat with a jump at the top but these are good too)

Glen Campbell in Final Stages of Alzheimer's Disease ("his family reports that music therapy has been particularly helpful"   Mr...I know you know I'm seething over the lack of this therapy I've suggested numerous times)

Researchers Say Eating Chocolate Every Day Can Have Serious Health Benefits  (Uh, I don't think they mean chocolate bunnies here.  For the record the one with the actual health benefits is 70% or higher.  We can highly recommend Trader Joe's Pound Plus bar which is 72%)

How to Recover After a Workout  (Good tips!)

Death by selfie  (I believe this could be another category in the Darwin Awards)

10 Photos That Perfectly Capture the Beauty of Growing Old Together  ("One way we stay unified is just by getting old. We have never been old before, and we are just trying to learn how to be old together.​"  So true!)

90-Year-Old Cancer Patient Quits Treatment to Travel the World  (She's in Savannah right now!  Love following this spunky lady!)

National Parks at 100  (Love our National Parks!)

Tourist ‘Kills Swan After Pulling It Out Of A Lake For A Selfie’  (Seriously, I am shaking in anger right now.  If I see anyone doing this to an animal, I will need bail money)

An open letter to the Whole Foods shoppers who consoled me when I learned of my dad’s suicide  (Good to know there are still good people out there willing to help a stranger in their darkest moment)

Here's When It's OK to Start Openly Farting in a Relationship  (Keep the mystery as long as possible people because once Pandora's box is opened, you can never go back.)

26 Things You Didn't Know About Grease  (Love this movie...after all, Grease is the word)

Literally the cutest video you will ever see

It's supposed to be a rainy weekend so I don't think any road trips are in our future.  We'll make a final decision tonight when we can see a potential destination's weather for next Saturday to see the lesser of two evils.  I want to get our bedroom cleaned up and some of that will take the Mr going through the rest of his dresser drawers so we can figure out what needs donated, what needs space bagged (totally a verb) for future wear and what can be put back.  I need to go through my closet too, I think I have a few items I can donate as well.  

What's on your agenda this weekend?

Like this post? Don't miss another one...subscribe via email or RSS feed. (Or you can follow me on Facebook )

Thursday, March 10, 2016

Things I'm Lovin' This Week

Slooooowly snaking our way to the weekend.

Man this week has been long or is it just me?  I know the Mr will be happy for the weekend as he's had to be in charge this week and every time he's the supervisor, it hits the fan.  I'm sure if he could throw a full punch, he'd hook the weight bag back up.

But let's not dwell on the poopy aspects of the week thus far and peep some things that are making things more bearable for me this week!

I like it when you sleep, for you are so beautiful yet so unaware of it by The 1975  (affiliate link) 

I literally learned some of the lyrics in my sleep because I cannot get this out of my head!  If you are remotely a fan of 80's new wave or bands like INXS, The Police and others of that ilk, you will love this album.  I'm sad to not be in on their initial success since this is their second album but for someone in desperate need of new music, this fits the bill in so many ways for me.  We were in Target and their song "Love Me" came on (try to get past the weird screechy sound in the beginning because the rest of the song is awesome) and we literally stopped in our tracks to see what it was.  Do you know how long it's been since a song has done that for me?  I don't remember, it's been that long.  The album is actually surprisingly mellow compared to the set they did on SNL of Love Me and The Sound.  There are several instrumentals which I LOVE.  (Tiger, Tiger was always one of my favorite Duran Duran songs.   Evan and Crockett's Theme were some of my faves as well as a kid...straight off the Miami Vice soundtrack.)  The song Please Be Naked turned me into a puddle of tears as well as Nana.  Click here to see some videos from this release and it looks like they'll be releasing Somebody Else soon...another great song.  Can't wait for the video.  Oh yeah and Matty and George (singer and drummer) are droolworthy enough to make me feel like a dirty middle aged lady.  Matty is a mix of Michael Hutchence and Colin Farrell.  Holy hell.

Back Buddy Trigger Point Massage Tool  (affiliate link) 

I saw this contraption at Bed, Bath and Beyond one time and laughed at it.  Then when all of my muscles were fighting to recover at once along with pain from bad sleeping positions, it was all I wanted.  I bought it and holy cow does it help every single area of mah bod!  The two little knobs there right behind where she's holding are used to help relieve the neck tension of weird sleep positions when I get up.  (Or before bed from a bad day)  The knobs at either end are good for digging in your lower back, glutes and those muscles that you just can't reach.  It's good for trigger release techniques and deep tissue massage.  It's especially helpful if you don't have someone to give you a deep back massage or if your partner has a wussy threshold for digging in.

TJ's Greek Mango Yogurt

Yep...if you can friggin' believe it, there is one flavor of yogurt that doesn't make me yarf into the sink if I lick the spoon.  NEVER discontinue this flavor Joe. I've jinxed myself.

Break Point  (affiliate link) 

I have this weird thing where if I really love a show, when it's over I must then support the actors in their next projects.  This means being a Six Feet Under fan, I had to follow Peter Krause to Parenthood...Michael C. Hall to Dexter (which then led me to have to follow Jennifer Carpenter to Limitless) ...Frances Conroy to American Horror Story and of course Jeremy Sisto to anything else he does.  (Though to be fair, I follow him to SFU because I was a Hideaway fan.)  Got all that?  Anyhoo, he was really hyping this movie on his Twitter and I wasn't sure about it but we rented it the other night and it was actually pretty frickin' funny.  Of course I like potty mouth Jeremy so it was right up my alley.  It was good seeing him in something funny again for a change and not having to be confined in by a prime time slot like Suburgatory.  It was well written and well cast.  I really wasn't feeling the kid until about the middle of the film but he grows on ya a little.  After checking his Twitter again and scrolling back, I see ABC has the rest of the Wicked City eppys they shot....binge watch of 4 episodes is in order!

Sarah Paulson in The People vs. O.J. Simpson

The O.J. trial was a major part of the Mr and I's lives when we first got engaged.  We were working at a law firm and this was the first trial where this crap ass standard we've come to accept as a society of thriving on the gory details came from.  We'd gather with all of the people in our downtown office in the cafeteria with the O.J. trial on and I can't count how many times we were late getting back to the office.  Watching Sarah Paulson in this show is mind blowing.  We have to remind ourselves we're not watching the real thing.  I heard she went pretty method for it and it worked.  She'd better get an Emmy!!

What are you guys loving this week?

(This post contains affiliate links)
Like this post? Don't miss another one...subscribe via email or RSS feed. (Or you can follow me on Facebook )

Wednesday, March 9, 2016

Programmus Interruptus Before It Got Startedus

Well, I was all jazzed to start my program this week which included 3 strength training sessions but the overuse injury I got from last month put a damper on that.  (I want to note I'm not saying that program injured me per se but I should've listened to my body more and took a rest day or rearranged some days instead of being so strict about staying on schedule.)

Saturday I couldn't even reach the top shelf at the grocery store and the weight of my own arm was making me wince in pain.  Monday I made an appointment with the chiro since it had been a month of progress and backsliding with Saturday being the worst.  When I went in, he thought I was coming in for the usual leg stuff but I said "welp, I'm here for a similar injury as the Mr's!"  He laughed and asked if it was due to a skiing accident too and I said no and told him about the program.  He said the Mr told him a little about it but asked for more detail and it sounded like I might've injured it early on and then not having proper recovery time coupled with sleeping on it and even something as simple as reaching for a high item in the cupboard all likely contributed.

After doing an exam, I told him where all the pain was being felt, he felt the bicep tendon was overused and there is a "piano key" effect going on where it's been trying to heal on its own, would get re-injured and now scar tissue has formed from that process.  He said it's hard to pin down an actual diagnosis because the pain, while bad to me, is nowhere near as bad as he's seen but likely a mild sprain of the area.  It's an overuse injury that is compensating before going into a rotator cuff injury so he said my coming in at this stage was good because we can get in front of it.  He did some range of motion tests and the first time he touched the bicep tendon, I said "that's the spot that feels tight but it hurts with you pushing on it."  I told him about the pain in the "dent" of the top of the shoulder and he said that is where I feel the pain but not where the injury is.  (Much like the Mr's injury is in the same place but from bracing so he feels his pain in the bicep.)  So he did a massage on the bicep tendon that felt good at first but then began to ache.  I'm pretty sure it was to break up the scar tissue before he lasered it.

He lasered it for a good long time too.  I told him the Mr kept urging me to go so the shoe was on the other foot now but he's a believer and talked about how good he feels after the lasering.  The doc is very impressed with his progress using the combo of icing, ultra sounding and the tens unit.  For me, I have to ice it daily and while at first he said I could do upper body but nothing load bearing over the head or using the bicep this week, I told him it was scheduled for the next day and he smiled and said "let's skip that this week, I want to give it a chance to heal up."  So I go back tomorrow for another laser treatment and pin session.

I'm going to be a good girl and listen to him and rearrange my program to be cardio-centric.  Since we already have one lower body session down, I'll change the total body to another lower body session (where the weights are hanging and stepping down 5 lbs).  I won't lie, I'm super bummed especially since I took so much time in planning our program to be what I think our bodies will respond to but cardio is never a bad thing.  I just wish we were both 100% to be able to do what we want to do instead of what we have to do.  So I'm in the process of coming up with alternate schedules until I'm cleared.  The Mr is cleared for upper body as much as he can handle without pain and hopefully I'll be there soon too.

Last night we had upper body on the schedule but my shoulder hurt from an over zealous Turbo Fire session.  (Didn't hurt while I was doing it but next day soreness)  Since it was going to be the only day with no rain this week, we decided to hang out with the squirrels...

I thought we'd do two laps but my legs still weren't totally down with that after leg day Sunday so we settled for one trail lap and a quarter mile flat loop.  Funny how when you get out of the habit of walking regularly, you think you can pick right back up where you left off but your body says 'don't think so, babes.'  I'll also have to dial back the punches for a week or so.  I never thought I'd be so dang twitchy to get back to the old routine.  Sigh.

What's your favorite upper body exercise?  Let me live vicariously through you.

Like this post? Don't miss another one...subscribe via email or RSS feed. (Or you can follow me on Facebook )

Tuesday, March 8, 2016

A review of our first "formal" program

As someone who has lost over 200 lbs and the Mr having lost over 150 lbs without surgery, we've done all kinds of exercise over the years. You guys know our workouts have always varied.  We've done workouts as easy as Walk Away the Pounds and even Dance Dance Revolution to ones as hard as Power 90 and Turbo Fire. When the Mr was feeling bummed about holiday weight gain and lack of variety, I knew I had to do something to keep crazy fad ideas at bay as they tended to spring up in desperate times.  After losing that initial weight, we got comfortable...well, complacent.  We're able to do most things and go most places so the rush to get to a lower wait took a back seat to just enjoying life.  But we're 50-75 lbs from our happy weight and if we were ever going to just finish the last third of our journey, we needed to do something different.

If you've followed us for the past year or so, you know that we love Fitness  They are a fun husband and wife team made up of Daniel and Kelli with the occasional appearance by their adorable dog, Loki.  You can read a little more about them here.  Their workout videos are free... yes, FREE.  You can do a search to find the workout you want to do from cardio to strength training to yoga and pilates.  The lengths can vary from a quick 10 minute routine to a 90 minute 1000+ calorie burn fest so there's no excuse not to fit them into your day.  The thing I love most about them is they're human.  They lose count sometimes, mess up on occasion and laugh at themselves just like the rest of us.  Their approach is very encouraging and laid back.  No one is barking orders in your face telling you if you're not yakking or passing out that you're not giving enough effort.

One of the ways you can help support them to keep their videos free is to buy one of their structured plans.  I bought the FB Fit 8 week fat loss program about a year ago and I'll be honest, I had every intention of doing it but we just never pulled the trigger.  When I saw their round 2 of that program was coming out about the time the Mr was feeling bummed about the holiday pounds, I immediately bought it and put it on the calendar.  It was $14.99 and is 8 weeks long.  Every workout is pre-planned so you don't even have to think about it.  Honestly, that was a big problem for us because we would go down, not have a plan in place and just pick what we felt like doing instead of what we probably should've been doing to challenge ourselves.  So having someone tell me what to do for 2 months on the exercise front was going to be a refreshing change.

I won't lie, their workouts can be hard.  Sometimes we had to modify, which they encourage as long as you're not doing it to cheat yourself.  In the time it takes Kelli to do 10 burpees, I can probably eek out three or four because when you're basically twice the size of the petite girl instructing you, that's just how it goes.  The first week, I lost 5 pounds and the Mr lost 3 pounds.  We were both very happy with that and couldn't wait to see what the coming weeks brought.  We were a special kind of sore the first few weeks, especially after leg days which felt like it took a week for me to recover from.  The next week I lost a pound.  I was kind of bummed but I know my body well and after a bigger loss, I'm always lucky if I see a pound loss or sometimes I'll stay the same or even gain a pound.  I took what I was given.  After 3 weeks, I could tell recovery from the strength training was getting less debilitating but I saw a 2 pound gain on the scale.  I remember that weigh in well.   I was excited to weigh in because I could see changes in my body and the Mr in his.  I wasn't going to let the weigh in get me down because I could see physical changes.  It was at that time, for some reason, it clicked that, duh...we should be measuring.  I made a measurement chart and we did our usual measurements we'd done over the years from neck to ankles and everything in between.  I didn't want the scale to be my only source of measurement.  The next week, I lost the 2 pounds I gained and was good with that.  The following week I was up a pound and a half again and I was ticked.  I wasn't ticked just because the scale was bouncing but because I stopped seeing physical changes in both of us and I was sore all. the. time.  I'm not talking "ooh, I just had a good workout" kind of sore, I'm talking "my body is broken with no time to recover" kind of sore and it was affecting my day to day functionality.  The Mr's progress was basically the same and he was very discouraged because with our old routine, the holiday weight would've been off or close to it 7 weeks later and he was still 11 pounds up!  The only time he lost any weight was when he had to do cardio workouts because he injured his shoulder skiing and couldn't do strength training as he rehabbed.  The other thing that seriously made me want to throw in the towel was my first measurements after a month.  Since the scale wasn't moving, I knew the measuring was my only hope for some positive results.  Well I was down 1/2" in the gut and one thigh but every other measurement went up!  I literally sat there with tears streaming down my face after writing in the fourth gain and they just kept mounting.  Even if I made muscle gains, this means I wasn't losing fat and that was our goal.  I knew our diet was on point because I am meticulous about planning it but we were going to need to dabble with calorie ranges but I knew my diet wasn't the reason for feeling broken.

As I tried to get to the source as to why I was so abnormally sore and stopped seeing physical changes, I reviewed the first month of the program we already did and saw that in addition to a few strengths per week, we were doing a lot more cardio.  When it went into the second month, it switched to almost all strength training and very little cardio.  Obviously super sets can count toward cardio and we were burning amounts of calories similar to cardio but our muscles were just not able to recover fully before being burned out again.  We made the decision to stick it out until the end of the program but we were not going to proceed with the round one I bought the previous year like we planned.  When the program was over, the Mr and I talked about how we felt about the two months we'd just put into it.  The Mr said he was so encouraged in the beginning because it felt like we were training like athletes.  At that point, we would've both been happy losing 10 pounds in that 2 month period as we didn't expect to lose what they claim most people lose.  We're about keeping expectations real.  At my final weigh in Saturday...with a one pound gain after being so broken that we were both hobbling even 3 days after we stopped the program, I could only just be glad it was over.  What I wasn't glad for was having only lost 3.4 pounds for me and 6 pounds for the Mr in 2 months.  I literally lose more when I'm not trying.  But the disappointment of how little weight we lost on it and how broken we consistently felt the second month was deflating.  We both agreed that we don't know if it is our age (early 40's) or weight (273 now and 284) or a combo of both but neither of us responded well to this program.

So would this be viewed as a failure of the program or the user?


This program is an amazing one and one we'll do again...when we have at least 50 more pounds off.  We have 100 lbs to go before we're at what is considered our medical 'healthy weight' and a program like this just isn't what our bodies need right now to reach our personal goals.  We both firmly believe we made great strength gains and the Mr has made some flexibility strides but the truth is, at our weights, we can't do something quite so strength heavy yet.  We've tried it before on our own and saw the same results.  I guess I wasn't paying attention enough to see the second month turned into a more strength based program.  I'd say if you're one of those lucky ones that only has 10-40 lbs to lose before your goal weight, this plan could be just the thing to kick your results into gear.

For us?  We're going to continue using Fitness Blender but in a way we tailor to our goals.  We've got a vacation coming up in the summer and time is no longer on our side.  So we'll continue to use their strength programs for our strength sessions and throw in a few of their HIIT's as well but we're also going to put in some of our old favorites on the cardio front like Turbo Fire, Tae Bo (yes, that 90's's how we lost our first 100 lbs), Powerstrike, Power 90 and even Walk Away the Pounds on the days we feel strength has given us a particular beating.  I've pre-planned the next 2 months of workouts for us and the Mr is very enthusiastic about it as he thinks they're more in line with what we need at this point and this weight.

Would I recommend the Fitness Blender plans?  In a heartbeat!  They're way cheaper than the gym, you can do it at home or traveling and Daniel and Kelli aren't annoying even after 8 weeks!  (Though I'll admit I was highly annoyed by the last week because I was just so constantly sore and it was "hormonal" week so there may have been some colorful words thrown around.)  If there's one thing I could change/suggest, it would be to reduce their use of the word "brutal" to describe many of their workouts.  When we first found them, we didn't even want to look at any of the ones listed as brutal. I know if it scared us away after years of doing different exercise regimes, it could do the same for others.  "Challenging" would be my preference because who doesn't want to be challenged?  I'm not going to split hairs, it's just an observation. ;-)   I just know after it switched to mostly strength training, I was feeling every letter of the word brutal in mah joints, yo!  They have 4 week programs if you want to focus on your booty or abs as well.  They say most people report losing between 16-24 pounds on the 8 week programs.  I'd love to say we were among them but we weren't and based on some comments on the program's page, we are in probably about a 25% range of people who had the same results as we did.  So I'd say a 75% success rate is still pretty good, right?

We feel like the strength gains we've made in the past 2 months will be maintained with our new self arranged program since we'll be alternating between two strengths one week and three strengths the following then alternating back and forth.  It will give us a break from seeing the same people every day and while we love D&K, it's just nice to have a little variety.  We'll still be seeing them 3-4x week though...they can't shake us that easily!  But as with going into any program, like the fine print on anything...results may vary.  You could do the same program and have completely different (better) results than we did.

What did we learn?  Listen to your body!  Because this was our first program, we wanted to follow it to a tee and do the workouts exactly as they planned them for us otherwise we felt like we were cheating.  But given I came away with an overuse injury on my right shoulder because I was stupid and didn't stop when my body was asking me to, I shouldn't have been ashamed to alter it to what we needed instead of trying to keep up.

Ultimately, we are proud of ourselves for sticking with it for the full 8 weeks.  We're grateful for the gains made in strength, flexibility and the subtle reshaping of certain areas of our bodies.  We will do this program again at a future date and hope that you all give Fitness Blender a try whether it's a paid, structured program or any of their free videos!  They also have different videos about things like "fitspiration" to their grocery hauls that can be informative or inspirational.  Recipes are also available.  It really is a great resource that I'm thankful to have access to and look forward to doing this program again when it's appropriate for our personal goals.

If you want to give one of their free 5 day structured workout plans a try, this is one they released at the beginning of the year:






As with this and all new fitness programs you may be considering, consult with your doctor before starting them.

Have you done Fitness Blender workouts?  Which ones are your favorites?

Like this post? Don't miss another one...subscribe via email or RSS feed. (Or you can follow me on Facebook )

Monday, March 7, 2016

A random weekend

Is it really Monday again?  

Friday was a triumphant day.  I got the office 100% done.  I don't ever remember it looking that good since we transformed it from a guest room to an office.  I thought everything just levitated, there's apparently a floor under there.  The Mr almost pooped himself.  We just kept occasionally looking in there and smiling or sitting in the chair.  I know, sad.  

Saturday I had to make a test batch of the mac and cheese I'm making for Easter.  It's Hominy Grill in Charleston's recipe.  For our batch, I used whole wheat pasta, used 2% milk and cut the salt in half to see how it would taste.  See, my family likes everything from chain restaurants and therefore full of salt.  Our tastebuds can't quite handle that anymore.  It turned out good...

I used mild and sharp cheddar and havarti.  I think for Easter, I'll do all sharp and either stick with havarti or use fontina and I'll have to use all of the salt because while it's good for our tastes, my family would leave that shizz in the bowl.  Sigh.  So I'll just have a little bit.  I'm making it because otherwise I'd be having a ham slice and a cheeseball and cracker.  My aunt makes these cheesy potatoes that everyone loves but I don't because she uses a buttload of sour cream.  (Remember, I hate tang...hence no yogurt straight up or sour cream)  I suspect I will have wished I just made the Velveeta Shells and cheese and be done with it.

I rarely have to try the latest holiday fad but being a life long Cadbury Egg fan (though I feel I'm about done with them...they don't taste quite right), we grabbed some of these Creme Egg Cookies.

It does taste like a crunchy creme egg.  It might be something fun to bring to Easter and let everyone try.  There's 6 per package and Walmart had the best price for them if anyone is interested.  (But for the record, nothing I'd need to buy again.)

I did not fall for this crap.

I guess the egg nog people are trying to figure out how to market it for other holidays.  Though I sense had it been the light version, the Mr would've been all over it.

This was the best thing I've seen in a long time.

I thought it was funny as I was looking for a stainless steel funnel to replace my plastic one, Amazon showed me this...

Sunday we had our usual jazzy brunch, chilled a bit, went into the office and laid on the floor...because we can now.  Then after a peek on Old, I saw some shirts that might be good for summer vacay so we headed to the store so I could try them on.  I got a nice little haul for $50.

The Mr tried on some shirts in the store and the ones we liked we bought online so we could buy them in the tall section since they don't sell those in store.

We stopped by the grocery and when we got home we got to our lower body workout.  It was later than we'd hoped and we still had a lot of crap ahead of us.  I made dinner and got this together while the Mr made his lunch, switched out dishes and cut my veggies for the week.

Whew!  Now I'm ready to collapse!

What did you guys do this weekend?

Like this post? Don't miss another one...subscribe via email or RSS feed. (Or you can follow me on Facebook )

Friday, March 4, 2016

What I'm Reading This Week 2016 #9

Finally the weekend!

When the Mr got home yesterday, he came home to find me in the office that is about 89% clean, dropped a few expletives and marveled at the fact we have a desktop again.  I want to finish it up today so I can finally breathe where that room is concerned.  It's been a heap far too long and if we're going to get business done for other stuff, it needed done.

But enough about my sudden burst of cleaning that got done and get to...

The 20 Best Body-Weight Exercises   (Feel the burn)

12 Financial Moves to Make When a Loved One Dies  (Morbid but should read it)

An Open Letter to Anyone Who Thinks They're Fat (From Someone Who Is)  (I agree with most of this but some

8 of the Most Toxic Items You Have in Your Home  (Some may surprise you)

Why Fat Shaming Doesn’t Promote Health And What You Can Do Instead  (Good read)

I got hacked mid-air while writing an Apple-FBI story  (Something ALL of you should read if you fly)

The Foods That Can Really Reduce Inflammation  (Yay, I eat most of these!)

19 Exercises to Help You Say Bye-Bye to Boring Crunches  (Buh bye)

The Miracle of Make Up  (Courtesy of The Mr)

Chewie Proves It: Han Shot First  (For the Mr)

Making Sense Of Science: The Truth About Carbs – Part 1

Making Sense Of Science: The Truth About Carbs – Part 2 

Perimenopause Symptoms, Explained  (Gee...can't wait)

'Robin Williams' tunnel gets its signs  (So happy and so glad to have been a part of the petition to help get it renamed)

HomeAway tweaks its rental commissions, adds traveler fee  (Seriously!?  We use them all the time and now I'm going to have to look elsewhere first.  I'll be damned if I'm paying a 9% effin' fee!!!)

Bruce Springsteen wows ladies of all ages at Leap Day show  (Aww, so sweet!)

Going into the weekend without a plan again.  Last weekend we were walking a line so I hope we come up with something.

Whatchu guys into this weekend?

Like this post? Don't miss another one...subscribe via email or RSS feed. (Or you can follow me on Facebook )