Tuesday, November 30, 2010

It's been a long time....and my workout playlist

WEll, hello there!! Yes I know it has been way too long. No good excuses, just been lazy. We had a great Thanksgiving. My dad, brother, and I ran the Boulevard Bolt on Thanksgiving morning with about 8500+ people! It was great. After not running in some time, I did not too shabby. So I am now back being motivated to get in gear. My ultimate goal will be the Counrty Music 1/2 marathon in April. So I have some work ahead of me, but I really want to do it!! I thought I might post my running/workout playlist. Any of your ideas would be appreciated- I am always looking for great music to run to!

In no particular order:
Glee:
Marry You
Forget You
Gives You Hell
Somebody to Love
Don't Go Breaking my heart
Halo/Walking on sunshine
Start ME UP/Living on a prayer
Gold Digger
Don't Stop Believing
Any Way you want it

Evacuate the Dance floor- Cascada
Bulletproof- La Roux
Rockafeller Skank- Fatboy Slim
Umbrella- Rhianna
SOS- Rhianna
Breaking Dishes- Rhianna
Let's Get it started- Black Eye Peas
I Gotta Feeling- BEP
Rock that Body- BEP
Tik Tok- Ke$ha
Blah Blah Blah- Ke$ha
Girlfriend- Avril Lavigne
Break your Heart- Taio Cruz
Nothin but a good time- POison
Bad Romance- Lady Gaga
Just Dance- Lady Gaga
Choose Life- Trainspotting Soundtrack
California Gurls- Katy Perry
Hot & Cold- Katy Perry
It Takes Two- Rob Base
Tainted Love- Soft Cell
Footloose- Kenny Loggins

Monday, May 10, 2010

This week's wrap-up

Hi All!
This past week has been crazy. Nashville experienced a horrible flood, I have never seen anything like it at all. We were so lucky to have had no damage (other than a small roof leak). But so many have lost everything. Yesterday the girls and I took baskets of food and cleaning supplies, along with cases of water to random houses in our area. It was really good for the girls to get to do that. Mackenzie really understood what was happening, and she really wanted to help. She even said she would give away some of her stuffed animals to kids that lost theirs. I was so proud of her. It made for a great Mother's Day. My sweet husband spent several hours on Saturday trying to find me the Garmin Forerunner 305. But everywhere he went had sold out of it. It made me feel so good that he tried so hard to do that for me, so hopefully in a few more weeks I can get one.

Throughout the week we had beautiful weather, so every day I took the girls out in the double stroller and we went for a 4 mile walk/run. I intended it to always be a run, but pushing 60 pounds of kids then whatever the stroller weighs gets a little tiring. And my stroller is not a jogging stroller, so it doesn't handle the best. And then there are at least 2 MAJOR hills to climb, so I get pretty worn out. But all in all I did pretty good. I am hoping to get a jogging stroller soon.

I have a 5k to run on Saturday, so I am hoping to improve my time on that. I also have a goal of running 100 miles in May.

I have not been so great at my eating this week. I tend to splurge after weigh-in on Saturday. It is now Monday afternoon, and I haven't really stopped! Yikes! I have done Weight Watchers so much that I feel like I know how to cheat. I need some more strict guidelines right now. I am still going to meetings and will finish out my pre-paid sessions through June, but maybe will try calorie counting for a while. I am working out like crazy but only losing about a pound a week. I am not complaining, but I know I can do better. Any thoughts?

I'll leave you with a picture of me and the girls before one of our runs this week

Wednesday, April 21, 2010

Weight Loss Update.. For those of you who care!

Well, it is now my 3rd week on Weight Watchers. And I have lost 2.8 pounds! But I actually lost 2 pounds before officially starting, so my grand total is 4.8!! YEAH! So , that makes my goal somewhere between 25-30 pounds left. (I haven't decided where I want to end up). However, I was a little bummed out this week at weigh in beacuase I just maintained, so no gain or loss. But that's good, I guess. I am pretty sure I know why I didn't lose- I ate out alot!! I stayed within my points, but i really did not make the best choices for my eating. Even thoug I can eat Chicken McNuggets, I probably shouldn't have had them 3 times in the week, nor ate a pound of chips and cheese dip at the Mexican restarauant! But, lesson learned, so gonna do better this week.

I am also trying to amp up my workouts. I already have plannned 2 workouts a day- in case I miss one. I know this sounds a little crazy, but I need to do soemthing everyday. I have a treadmill that I pull out halfway between my garage and driveway and I run and the girls play. This looks a little crazy to the neigbors I am sure, but it is what works for me!! It is the best solution i have come up with to keep the girls happy and occupied but let me get in a workout. I typically strive for a 45-90 minute run on the treadmill, and I am trying out interval training now too! i also run sprints on my driveway ( I have a very Steep driveway). I am running backwards up the driveway too! HARD! I am training for a 5K, 10K, 15K, and 1/2 marathon in either September or November. So, I run outside 1-2 x wk.

In, addition I am doing some workout videos. I have come to realize that I need an intense, cardio based workout, so these have been working really well for me.

The Biggest Loser Last Chance Workout
Jillian Michaels 30 Day Shred
Jillian Michaels Banish Fat Boost Metabolism
Jillian Michaels No More Trouble Zones
Jillian Michaels Yoga Meltdown

So, for now that is my plan. I am just working each day and doing the best I can. I think that I finally have it in my head that I have to do this. I don't want to settle for being mediocre anymore. I have so much more potential than I have given myself credit for. I owe this to myself, my family, and to God because He gave me this life to live more abundantly.

Sunday, April 11, 2010

Here we go again...


Well, it has taken me a while to get to this point, but here I am. I am tired of being uncomfortable. I am tired of being a little "pudgy". I am tired of looking in the mirror and hating what I see. I am tired of being consumed by negative thoughts about myself. I am tired of not feeding my body what it needs. I have been here before ( many times). I am making some changes. First of all, I re-joined Weight Watchers. I think I have done it 4 times, but the most successful being the first time 9 yrs ago. I lost close to 40 pounds then. I felt great. I worked out and ate right. But, just like alot of things, I let that go. I have tried a couple of times since then, but with little success. Mainly because I wasn't willing to work hard enough to make it stick. So, here I am again. I have about 25-30 pounds to lose. I love weight Watchers because it is normal! You can be a normal person on it, you don't have to take your own salad dressing with you when you go out to eat! It is making me focus on healthy foods, portion control. I really have to think about what I eat, am I eating this because it is fuel for my body? This is only my first week back on, but I am excited about what I can do.

I want to be an example to my kids. I want them to make the right choices and not struggle the way I have.

I am also starting to run again. I really like to run. I enjoy it. I actually like to run on the treadmill too! I ran my first 5k on Saturday, the first one in over 2 yrs. I had back surgery almost 2 yrs ago and it has taken a long time to recover. I know that when I am active I feel so much better. So in addition to running I am also starting Jillian Michael's 30 Day Shred. I did this a few months ago, and let me tell you- it works! It is intense, but it will work you out. I also like Leslie Sansone's Walk Away the Pounds. It is super easy and very moderate as far as intensity. My plan right now is to schedule in 2 workouts a day, one am and one pm. One a light/moderate 20 minute or so and then a good 45-60 minute run. I have a treadmill, but also like to get out with the girls too.

Another thing I am trying to incorporate is more "clean living". I try to buy organic beef, chicken, and dairy. We do not drink cow's milk, we drink almond milk. I have switched all my kid's dishware to glass, stainless steel, or ceramic. I will get more in to this in a later post. I am not a total greenie, but I think there is merit to really knowing what you are eating. Don't get me wrong, I do enjoy my McDonald's quite a bit, you can't give up everything! Haha!!

So , here it goes, and I will keep you informed of our progress.

Monday, March 29, 2010

What are you gonna eat this week?

I generally try to plan menus for each week. I do this because I get to dinnertime and either don't feel like using my imagination at all, can't pry a certain 2 yr old off my leg, or I am just in a rut, or I really just don't care. So, here is a sample of what we're having for dinner this week. Please share your menus- I really need some help getting out of our usuals!!

Mon- Roast Beef Sandwiches with steamed broccoli and baked french fries. (we had this last week and it was great! Just take some deli roast beef, throw it in a saucepan with some seasoned beef broth and heat it for a few minutes. Heat your oven to 350, place the roast beef on some sub buns, top with provolone cheese and bake for about 5 minutes. Use the leftover broth as your "au jus" sauce). Yummy!!

Tues- salad

Wed- Baked Potatoes, steamed veggies

Thurs- Cheese and chicken quesidillas with refried beans

Fri- Frozen Pizza (we like Red Baron),and veggies and dip and/or salad

Sat- grilled cheese and tomato soup

Sun- Baked chicken, marinated in hawaiian marinade, rice, grilled pineapple (on the George Foreman), and steamed veggies

(Yes, that's alot of steamed veggies, I know)

Look forward to hearing your menus.....

Tuesday, March 16, 2010

Tilly Bird Designs


Many of you may know that my mom and I have a little business called White Heather Creations. We have worked together on this for a few years now. As we have done this, we have branched out in several directions. We both have our own niche and felt that it was time to expnd our interests. So, I would like to introduce you to Tilly Bird Designs. Here I am concentrating on personalized embroidered items such as shirts (birthday, big sis/bro, names), appliqued name frames (for room decor), Hair Happies and bows, Tooth fairy pillows, and much more. In the coming weeks I will be getting a website going, but for now you can check us out on Tilly Bird Creations blog. I will be doing some give-a-ways there too. And I always welcome custom orders.

And, please visit White Heather Creations to find wonderfully scented room sprays, soaps, gift baskets, photos and cards of Scotland, perfumes, and more.

Also check out my dad's site for beautiful pictures at Day Star Photo.

Oh, and one more, while we're at it!! Here is Dewayne's site for our business, Quest Systems.

Wednesday, February 17, 2010

Just some randomness

Today am I am going to meet with a tax attorney. Not holding out much hope, but it's worth a shot... I guess... depending on how much he charges. Dewayne says if he costs $500 in order for us to save $500 on these stupid taxes, it is well worth it. As you can figure, that really doesn't save us any money. His theory, however, is that at least we can stick it to the IRS. I am not sure that will really hurt the IRS's feelings, but it might make us feel better. He announced to me the other day that his mission in life is to now stick it to the IRS every and any chance he gets. I agree! The girls are both suffering from colds. Unrelated, They have missed a million days of preschool, that only meets 2 times a week. Gotta love snow days! I have eaten way too many assorted chocolates in the past 3 days, really way too many. It is embarrassing. I am on the hunt for a good all-purpose all-natural cleaner. Any suggestions? Itried the half vinegar/ half water solution. Not a big fan. Works well, but I can't deal with the smell. Flashbacks of this summer when we had 3 billion fruit flies and we set out cups of vinegar to lure them to thier death. Oh, and this just makes me laugh....(Don't forget to scroll to the bottom of the page to pause the background music, so you can hear the video).
video

Monday, February 8, 2010

I need an umbrella

You have heard the saying, when it rains it pours... well I am in need of a giant umbrella right now. I have felt put through the ringer the last couple of weeks. Not only did we have to deal with this stupid IRS audit, but we had to have work done on our Jeep. Well, yesterday Dewayne got up to go to work and guess what?? His van won't start! I am frustrated beyond belief. If it's not one thing, it's another.

I know that God is in control though. That is the one constant in life- that God loves us and provides for us in a multitude of ways. My mom keeps telling me to hand on because things must be getting ready to break loose for us. I am not sure they can get too much worse- haha!! But beyond all this frustration and worry is some simple truths that I must hang on to- God loves me beyond anything I can understand. I have a roof over my head and food on my table. I have a wonderful husband that loves me and two of the greatest kids on the planet!! I have a wonderful family and great friends. God has never failed me and he won't start now. Maybe the provisions aren't how I expect them, but nonetheless they are provisions.

I have listened to this song over and over, and will continue to praise God for who he is.

Saturday, February 6, 2010

Hang on...I'm fired up today!

Ok, so let me just warn you, this post will be a bit lengthy. I have alot to say today. We just completed an IRS audit of 2 years (2007 & 2008). This took 2 days, 5 hrs the first day and 3 hrs the second day. This will be time lost forever to me, and I feel I got jipped! I do not know why we got audited, other than we are a small business owner/self employed. The official answer was it was random, according to my auditor "B" as I will refer to him, we just won the reverse lottery. (However I do have my own thoughts as to why we were chosen). Thanks B, not much comfort at this point. I will try to recap some of the highlights of our time together.

Basically I had to bring in a bazillion records for everything from gas receipts to client files. I was told that the IRS had every right to contact our bank and ask any question they wanted about of finances, and that they could turn over our information to any government agency if needed. Now, I am not worried that the FBI will be rifling through our gas receipts, but the concept does make me a little uneasy. I had to lay out what a typical day for our business was, what Dewayne does for the business, how he gets clients, how he does a job, how he bids jobs, what do I do for the business, how we keep records. I had to fill out a record of what our monthly/yearly expenses are- what we spend on groceries, entertainment, getting our hair cut. Yes I really did just say that, they wanted to know how much we spend on our hair!I had to justify so many things, it was just plain crazy. We got dinged on a few things, and the truth is that they were just honest mistakes. There was no shady behavior, we just did not know!! B said I did not have enough documentation on a couple of things, but I gave everything I had. I am not sure I could give any more. The second day, as I was going through the x-ray machine upon entering the building, the security guard asked me if I had mace in my bag!! It was a bottle of hand sanitizer. I asked him if he saw alot of mace coming through there, he didn't really answer me. I guess he must.

So, the outcome? I won't tell you the actual damages, because it is just ridiculous. Especially after we paid an arm and a leg already. I feel that if we made mistakes, then we should pay. I get that. Here's what burns me up. The IRS charged us back taxes, a 20% penalty fee on those taxes, interest ranging from 4-6%from April 15, 2007 and 2008, and the best of all, they charged AN ACCURACY FEE of almost $1100.00! What is an accuracy fee you ask, so did I. I asked B, "so you are charging me to do my audit?" He says, "well if that's what you want to call it." They charged us to audit us!!!!! I did not ask for this!! Trust me I have so many better ways to spend $1100.00 than on your stinkin Accuracy fee. So, the options for payment are to pay in full because the IRS really likes that according to B, to be on a payment plan with interest of course, or file for a 4 month extension to make your mind up, with interest again. Interest on top of the interest you are already hit with. And once again B says "well you owe the IRS interest and it is their right to collect it because you didn't pay the correct amount at the time you filed your taxes". Well B, I guess they do feel it's their right, I have other opinions about that. Oh, and I asked about settling for half, say I brought in cash next week half the payment? Well, I have to fill out a 45 page document to start the process, which according to B takes months to get through. And he said our chances are slim because we'd both have to be unemployed and our house in foreclosure to get a deal like that. Well, B, we may not be far from that,

How is a small business owner supposed to make it? We seriously would go under if we had employees. Oh yeah, we got dinged on claiming the payroll taxes we had to pay on our employee in 2007. You can only claim HALF of that. How about paying half of the payroll taxes? What a croc! President Obama runs around moaning about credit card companies and how it's highway robbery what interest they charge people. Um, can we talk about 20%, can we talk about accuracy fees? You can shove it . I was a Bush supporter, although he got pretty squirrley at the end. I voted for McCain because he was the lesser of two evils, and only because he had Palin on the ticket. You know what? They vast majority of them are crooks. I am sick and tired of being raped by the government. We work hard, we pay more than our fair share- we are somewhere in the 25% or so tax bracket. We cannot get ahead because we are forced to pay STUPID taxes and fees. We have to carry Workman's Comp insurance even though we have no employees and my husband cannot use it if he were hurt on a job. That runs us about $700 a year. It is high time the taxpayers of this country tell our government to stop it!! Stop stealing my money, and if you are gonna take it, spend it wisely.

Ok I will stop for now. I am sure you will hear more from me on this.

Tuesday, January 26, 2010

Frustrated

Today I am just frustrated. I have had 3+ days of girls screaming at each other, not listening to me, being totally rowdy. Yesterday they had a SMACKDOWN over play-doh Lock Ness monsters we made as we were talking about Scotland. Honestly I don't even know what started the whole melee, but it ended with Maggie ripping in two Mackenzie's Nessie. Let me tell you, there was a whole lot of drama over that! And today they have been banned from sitting on the couch because they can't seem to obey the rules such as no jumping, no running, etc!!

On top of that, there seems to be something wrong with our Jeep, again!!! Yes I know it is awesome to have no car payment, but the "curse of the Cherokee" as I call it is getting rather old. Every few months there is some kind of rinky dink problem with this stupid vehicle that ends up costing us. I am OVER IT!!!

Please say a little prayer for me toady! :)

Wednesday, January 13, 2010

Caterpillars and Butterflies

Today we did a lesson on The Very Hungry Caterpillar. We watched an animated book on YouTube (found the link on Confessions of a Homeschooler). The girls and I re-enacted the story with cut-outs from the story. Then we learned about the life cycle of a butterfly. We rolled up like an egg, crawled around like a caterpillar, wrapped up in a cocoon, and then popped out as a butterfly!! They had a blast!


Mackenzie and I also worked from Piano for Preschoolers. She is working on Twinkle Twinkle Little Star. It is recognizable!!

Monday, January 11, 2010

School Day #1



So, we accomplished school today with relatively few problems. YEAH!!! I did plan everything and prepare it last night so I was ready to go this morning. We started at about 9:45, after chores around the house were done. The biggest problem we had was Mags! Bless her, she just couldn't stay still and wanted to do the opposite of everything I was doing, so after about 10 minutes she was moved to the TV to watch The Letter Factory dvd, which she loves. So it worked out well, Mackenzie and I finished up. So, here is a breakdown of our lessons for today.

1. Prayer and devotion: We had a quick prayer to ask the Lord to be with us today, to help our hearts and minds be ready to learn. I also read a quick devotion from The Princess In Me Devotional Bible by Sheila Walsh. We are at the beginning so we discussed creation.
2. Pledge of Allegiance: I really need to get a flad, but for today we had a cutout of the flag. It was so cute to hear the girls recite after me, plus we worked on right/left too!
3. BINGO: We played a game of BINGO with letters, shapes, and numbers. It came out of a book that my mom got me for preschoolers. It was great because Mackenzie really got the concept and she was helping Maggie with her card. Maggie on the other hand did great the first round, she really matched her images well. But, after that, everything I called she kept saying "I WIN!!!"
4. Bible Story: I read from a book that I had as a child, The Bible in Pictures for Little Eyes by Kenneth Taylor. Then I read more out of Instant Bible Lessons for Toddlers: Jesus is My Friend . The lesson we are focusing on this week is My Friend Jesus calls helpers. I read the story and then asked Mack questions about what I read. We also started to memorize the scripture, "Follow ME, " Jesus said. (Mark 1:17). There was a counting chart with the disciples and also a coloring page.
5. Daily Binder: This consists of several pages that we will review every day: calendar, abc/sounds, numbers, clock, map of the US, currency, sight words, cursive letters.


6. Lunch: I made a lunch following the idea from Muffin Tin Monday, although I did not follow their theme, I went with a fish theme. We had goldfish, fish shaped pb&j sandwich, fish shaped cheese, and Nemo gummies. And, I forgot to take a picture!! :( But this went along with our bible story and we talked about it over lunch.
7. Snowman: We made a snowman out of 2 paper plates


8. Scotland: We started a lesson on Scotland Robert Burns. Mackenzie drew a thistle and made her own kilt. We will be doing lots more on this over the next couple of weeks leading up to Burns Day on January 25.

All in all we had a great day! Here are some pictures of how I set up our school space. We don't have lot of room, but it works for now- until we can finish out the basement.
The Girl's area- holds supplies and the daily items we use



My are- my supplies, books, etc.

Saturday, January 9, 2010

Schooling 101

Well, I have finally made the decision!! I have struggled with this for MONTHS!!! I am going to begin officially homeschooling Mackenzie next week. The plan is to continue what we've already been doing, but just more regularly. She attends preschool 2 days a week, so on the other 3 days, we will be schooling. I am in the process of setting up the school room in our bonus room- pics to come. The challenge is going to be in occupying Mags and keeping the two of them from harming each other over a box of crayons!! Wish me luck!!

Sunday, January 3, 2010

Happy 2010!

Well, here we are, another year!! I spent today cleaning out my closet (yet again) and parting with sweaters that I have not worn in at least 3 years. I hope I don't regret that! HAHA! I also went on my first run of the new year yesterday. It was only 3 miles, but it was also 24 degrees!!! I honsetly could not feel alot of my body by the time I got back! And in addition, I chose a course that made me feel like I was climbing Mt. Everest. Dewayne tried to warn me that it was "pretty hilly", but I, in my infinite wisdom, knew better!! Not so much. But, I got through it. I am hoping to do a 5k in a couple of weeks, and ultimately do the Country Music half marathon in April.