Tuesday, 9 September 2014

{DIY} - Fall Sign

Well the FALLification (is that a word?) of our entry continues. And once again I didn't spend a penny.

One thing you may not know about me is that I hoard wood remnants. I have all sorts of pieces of wood in our basement waiting to be dealt with. So when I got the itch to craft and I wenr downstairs and grabbed a random piece of wood.

So this project was FREE! I love Free, don't you?

It's a little rustic. The letters are not perfect. But, did I mention it was F-R-E-E?

I think it looks great beside the new door colour which I showed you yesterday with the Fall wreath and also with my old Front door rug (which has seen better days).

And... because I like to keep it real "rustic" I haven't painted the trim around the windows yet. I'm working on it. ;)

That cement egg was gifted from friends of ours who were moving out of the country this summer and didn't want to bring it with them.  I just love the blue colour.

Back to the sign... I was inspired by this Giant Distressed Fall sign that I had pinned from Love Grows Wild.  Which goes to show you that you can be inspired by someone else's project and then make it your own. I'll show you how I made mine soon.

Have you started Fall decorating yet?

Let's Connect!

Linking up at Monday Funday

Monday, 8 September 2014

DIY- Fall Wreath

Hey! How was your weekend? We had a wicked storm here on Friday night, and the weather really cooled off for the weekend. Kind of like a reminder that Fall is coming... although, here in Southwestern Ontario we've been reminded that Fall was coming all summer long. But enough about that.

With the cooler weather this weekend I decided it was time to accept it and start my Fall crafting.

Fall wreath using twine balls and hydrangeas

So I decided to start with my Front door.  Which, by the way I painted a while ago and forgot to tell you about cause I was too busy working out. And if you look closely you also can see how I dealt with privacy issue for now. It's just contact paper.

(ignore hockey net, someone was playing outside while I took pics)

This is what the door looked like at Christmas time.  The colour is Sherwin Williams Urbane Bronze and I first fell in love with the colour back in September, and knew it needed it in my life (or at least on my front door). It's the perfect brownish-grey and it looks great with our house brick.

But back to the wreath...

I decided not to spend a penny... since I don't really have a penny to spend after vacation. I grabbed a wreath that I had on hand and went through my bag of previously used and re-used flowers and pulled out some hydrangeas and some other fall flowers and pics.  I used some twine balls I had on hand and I used some Floral wire and attached everything to the wreath.

 At one point I had about 50 flowers on it and a bunch of other stuff, and I took everything off.  I think keeping it simple and only using a few items is better.  At least I think so.

So there you go... My first Fall decoration!

Have you started Fall decorating yet? Or you savouring every last second of your summer decor?

Let's Connect!

Linking up at Monday Funday

Tuesday, 2 September 2014

Summer 2014 - Seaside, Florida Vacation

Hi everyone!

It's been awhile since I posted on here.  After my Biggest Loser competition came to an end, I need to take a breather.  Honestly I felt kind of lost afterwards, not having something scheduled every single minute of my day! But I needed a break. And so I... actually "we" took one!

We drove down to Seaside, Florida (17 hours over 2 days) for a few days of fun and sun and a whole lot of relaxation.  I hope you don't mind but I took a couple of pictures to share with you all.  Fair warning there are alot of pictures.  Actually consider yourself lucky I only uploaded these because I took 550 pictures. Enjoy!

This is the house that we rented for the week.  Each kid had a bedroom, and we had a full kitchen to cook our meals in, although we did eat out a few times. 

We spent alot of time running in the waves. I tried running but my ankle has not healed enough since I hurt it a few months ago.

Some of us perfected our handstands...

Summer is not complete without a handstand from Haley.

Some of us looked for shells...

And found "pets"...

Haley had found a hermit crab and was showing it to Grannie and Sydney. She put it back in the water after a few minutes.

Anthony found a toad one day and named him "Howard". He looks like a Howard right? They took turns squishing holding him, until poor Howie broke free and hopped away for his life.

 Those eyes... Be still my heart!

And speaking of eyes...

 Sydney is growing into a beautiful young lady.

With a constant photobomber...

This cutie is growing up way too fast, too. I can't believe she started grade 9 today.

 When on vacation, hubby rarely shaves. We always worry about tan lines.

This was our last night on the beach watching the sunset.

We were able to check off a bunch of things off of our Summer Bucket List!

Kids are back in school as of today, and I think we are all looking forward to getting back into our daily routine.
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What fun things did you do this summer? Did you get away anywhere this summer?

Let's Connect!

Monday, 4 August 2014

Losing it and Winning - So did I win?

Hey all!

Sorry I've been MIA for the last couple of weeks, but it couldn't be helped.  First I was working my bootie off trying to finish off strong in the Biggest Loser challenge and then I needed to recover.

If you are new to this series, I wrote a little bit about my 12 week challenge in this post.  Here are the recaps for week 1week 2week 3week 4week 5week 6week 7week 8week 9 and week 10.

So where do I start? The last I left you, my percentage weight loss was 13.87% and I was sitting at 148.4 lbs after binging nasty encounter with a bag Honey Teddy Graham cookies one night.  Up until that point my average weight loss per week was about 2.5 lbs. I was irritable and miserable and just plain irritated with the whole thing and ready to give up.  But I'm a fighter so I put on my big girl workout clothes and really kicked it up a notch.

This is what my last two weeks of workouts consisted of:

5:30 - 6:00 a.m. - Sprinting running on treadmill
6:15- 7:05 a.m.- Crossfit class (HIIT Class)
Stretch and go home have breakfast and feed kids
10:45/11:00-  a.m. - back to gym, ride bike for 90 minutes or run on treadmill for 5k
12:00- 1:00 p.m. - Crossfit class (HIIT Class)

A couple of times I went in for the 2:30 p.m. or  4 p.m. class or rode the stationary bike/ran treadmill while the class was going on.  It helped to pass the time watching people moving around in front of me.

Going into semi -final weight in I was sitting at 146.8lbs or 14.87%. Yes, I was really frustrated!  After all that I did that week, only a 2.5lb weight loss.  My closest competitors, semi-final weigh-ins landed them at 18% and 19%.

So I kicked it up one more notch. I had to or give up.
And then at the 6:15 a.m. class on Monday morning, I rolled my ankle and I thought it was all over.  I cried.  I tried no to, but I did. When I told my trainer Leija, all she said was "giving up is not an option!" I texted my two group ambassadors and I got the same response from them.  So I went to drug store and got a wrap for my ankle and wrapped it up tight and went back to gym! It hurt and I was careful on certain moves, but I got my sweat on and the motivation came back.

On one of the days where my schedule looked very similar to the one above, I also ran 8k that evening with Biggest Loser Tuesday class with a tired sore wrapped ankle.  Let's just say, the next morning, my body was ready for a break and I rested it... for a couple of hours, and then I headed back to the gym.

In the final week I also changed up my nutrition/meal plan and water intake.  I cut out oatmeal/bread that I was eating for breakfast and also cut out fruit. My diet consisted of eggs, chicken breast, and green vegetables and protein shakes for 4 days.  And the last 3 days I cut it even further. My water intake was reduced as well.

****I don't recommend this if you are trying to lose weight and not in a competition where every ounce counts. It is not healthy, and the water weight returned within a few days of normal eating and drinking again.****

I challenged myself!  I did it because I knew/suspected my competitors would be doing the same thing.

The water cutting was hard. I was tired and just wanted it to be over!  But I got it done.

So did I win?

No, I came in third.  My final weigh-in number was 131.3 lbs or 23.8%.

The second place winner was 23.9% and the first place winner was 26%.

But, I still feel like a winner!

I reached my goal, I challenged my body, and I've changed my lifestyle to be a healthier, more fit me.

I've motivated my family and my friends to start working out.

I've met every set-back head on and never gave up.

AND... I have my strong healthy body back! It took me 15 years but I did it.

I am a winner!

January 13, 2014 I weighed in at 188lbs and July 27, 2014 I weighed in at 131 lbs.  That is a 57lb weigh loss! I lost 30% in about 6 months.

I've been asked a few times about the gym that I've been working out at and I don't think I ever mentioned it by name.  It's called REV3K and they just launched a new website too.  Check it out!

Any locals, want to check it out, just let me know, and you can come in for a week of free classes. I will join you.

I've been asked a few times... "what's next?"

I'm not done with my body yet.  I want it stronger and I want it leaner.  I'm purchasing a membership at REV3K and I will be working out 4-5 times a week.  I will stick to my eating plan of high protein and low carbs, but I will have more options in my diet. I will allow myself a treat without guilt.

By the way, because I know you like to see the before afters.

And after...

Thanks for following along in my weight loss journey and for all of your encouraging comments.  I needed them!

Let's Connect!

linking up at TDC Before/After

Tuesday, 15 July 2014

{RECIPE} Easy Tin Foil Potato Packets

We love to camp in the summertime, at least once. We've been doing it since the girls were babies.  But before we head out I like to test out recipes at home to make sure they will work for us when were out there without my bare necessities (back-up food).

Recently I tasted tested these at home and they turned out amazing. Kids loved them too!

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Tin Foil Potato Packets

  • 6-8 medium potatoes, cut into thin slices
  • 1/2 cup sliced onion
  • 2-3 cloves of garlic, minced
  • 2 tbsp of canola or olive oil
  • 1 tsp of favourite steak seasoning
  1. slice onion and potatoes and place in large bowl, add garlic, seasoning and oil and mix together.
  2. Meanwhile rip a heavy duty tin foil into large squares. (I like to double mine too, just to make sure). Usually for 6-8 potatoes I make two packets that feeds my family of 5.
  3. To middle of each square add potato/onion mixture, leaving enough room to fold the tops and crimp the sides. 
  4. Grill over low - medium heat, with lid covered for 30-45 minutes. When I get close to end time I packet to check. ;) Open packets slowly to release steam. Enjoy!

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Are you like me? Do you taste test your recipes at home before going camping?

Let's Connect!