Putting It All Out There. Maybe.

Hello again.

Since the last time I wrote, to my own shock, I actually DID start working out again. I will admit that I gave up after a few days the first week because I was so damn sore from my leg day workout. Weak. The following week I was just trying to get through that horrible time that most ladies get. Y’all know what I’m sayin’. So I pretty much was deadddd. But I’m back at it this week! It’s Wednesday and I worked out both Monday AND Tuesday. Today is a cold and rainy day here in the DFW area and I’m spending it indoors cuddled up with my dogs. No worries though. My workouts are home workouts that don’t require fancy gym equipment – just bodyweight or light dumbbells.

I went to my primary care physician this week for my annual physical and because they wouldn’t refill my medicine without checking in again. I still need to go back to get my blood drawn for labs because I was in a rush on Monday, so I should have results back early next week. My blood pressure was good (to my surprise) but my weight has obviously gone up since I saw him last year though. I had gone down some around May but I gained it back and more. Here’s to me being brave… *breathe* My highest weight is now roughly 289 (with clothes – that makes a difference right???) UGH! I don’t think I’ve ever told anyone my weight except my husband. This is really hard to admit. However, I think it’s an important step in my journey. By putting it out there I have given myself some sort of accountability as I don’t want to come back and say I’ve gained even more weight. I’m telling y’all, I really want to try this time. I want to lose the weight. I NEED to lose the weight and get healthier. There are a couple of reasons for this besides the fact that I’m tired of walking around feeling like Violet from Willy Wonka.

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I feel so round.

My mom has been dealing with several health issues for a while now. She was diagnosed with stomach ulcers, attributed to stress, many years ago. Most recently she was diagnosed with gout, arthritis (not sure which kind), and the scariest is Diabetes Type 2. It’s scary to hear because she’s had issues with her sugar before and doesn’t like to take medicine and she’s stubborn in her eating habits. She doesn’t live in the safest of neighborhoods so I’m glad she owns a treadmill but I’m not sure how often she uses it. My point is that Diabetes is a real threat to my health, not only due to my PCOS and insulin resistance but now it’s most likely always been in my genetics.

(NOTE: to my IRL friends and family, please don’t bring up what I’m about to say because it’s a difficult subject for me to talk about seriously…I know I joke about it and have been known to say I just want dogs but that’s just a front so I don’t have to delve deeper into the subject.)

The other biggest reason I really need to get my stuff together is that my husband and I want to get started on our family. It’s a touchy subject for me with my health and the possibilities. The what-ifs scare me. I might post about it another day, maybe.

But there you have it. This is more for myself, as usual, just to get my thoughts out and try and work through stuff. I’m working on getting my eating habits on a healthy track. I’ll be starting Victoza again – just a sample for now – along with my regular meds. I’m hoping it will get me started in the right direction along with my exercise plan and diet. Low carb is what I’m aiming for or at least fewer carbs and take out/fast food, for now, so please share any recipes or Pinterest boards if you’d like.

 

 

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February Check In

Hi again! If you’re like me, February was the new official start of New Year’s resolutions. January was a trial month. Everyone knows that. Moving on. This month, I

This month, I reeeeeally wanted to follow through as I am so, so very terrible at it. I made a pretty little tracking chart in my bullet journal and used lots of pinks and reds. Tons of hearts – it is the month of love after all. For about half of the month, I stuck with my highest priority goals. I took my medicine and supplements and logged my meals. I stayed around my carbohydrate goal in general but due to my lack of dedicated exercise, my calorie intake has probably been too high to really lose any weight. However, we managed to decrease our fast food spending this month due to forcing myself to take leftovers to work. It also helps that I have an AMAZING husband who offered to make me breakfast every weekday along with his.

 

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Eggs and uncured bacon every day with the occasional toast. This day included salsa and queso fresco. Yum!

Today I went to get some labwork done ahead of next week’s endocrinologist appointment. Hopefully, my results move in the right direction. PCOS is not fun and is very defeating. I haven’t had as many breakdowns recently so that’s good. I’m trying to stay positive and keeping in mind why I want to lose weight and get healthy.

 

I also got a new computer today! So this may translate into more frequent blog posts. We’ll see. 😉

Oh, one final thing: Everyone needs to go check out April the Giraffe on YouTube. I’m obsessed and absolutely way too invested in this live giraffe birth for my own good, but I need people to discuss the adorableness of it all with. Tweet at me or find me on Instagram so we can have all sorts of giraffe-related convos. 🙂

New Year, Same Me

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Alrighty…it’s now 2017. Time for “new year, new me” right? Well, with my track record that’ll only last a short time. I’m on a never-ending cycle of motivated action, not seeing the results I want, feeling defeated and giving up, and repeat. Somehow there must be a way to break this cycle.

Taking it one day, one week, one month at a time is probably the best. Evaluate and modify. Try again.

So again for this year my goals include getting healthy and losing weight. This year that means having my knee surgery (it’s just two days away!! *freak out*) and taking the time to recover. As soon as I am able, I will start on a workout routine that I can stick to. What that will be is still to be determined. This month I’m also focusing on increasing my water intake.

Other resolutions for this year include date night once a month, reading at least six books, making a cookbook recipe at least twice a month, learning a new language (check out the Duolingo app), and paying off our car loan ahead of time.

Today I’m feeling unusually motivated and positive. Perhaps it’s the fact that I slept over 8 hours last night (according to my Fitbit…I’m suspicious of that number though). Or perhaps, it’s because the weather is nice out. Who knows? The fact is, if I can hold on to this feeling for a while I can probably be more productive and make some real changes.

Here’s to a new year, same me, but different… 🙂

Japan Day 3 – A Quick Flashback

As previously mentioned, day 3 in Japan was pretty chill. What wasn’t mentioned in my long rambling were two things I’d love to share with y’all. One: My husband and sister-in-law’s experience trying natto. Two: I found a pine cone!

Ok, so about the first one: Natto is basically fermented soybeans. Apparently my husband watched many videos on the plane ride to Japan that explored various topics about Japanese culture, including food information. This is where he learned about natto. He loves fermented and weird things like sauerkraut, so of course he wanted to try natto! He jumped on the opportunity when we went grocery shopping for the cookout. When we got back to the house, our friend’s wife cooked up some rice to go along with the natto. Our friend’s host dad said that most Japanese people don’t even really eat it. My husband was ready to dig in and somehow convinced his sister to try a good amount herself. Poor girl. We all watched in anticipation of their reaction. Now, this stuff is weird…they picked it up with the chopsticks and this slimy, gooeyness just dripped down. The smell alone was off-putting.

Dustin’s reaction: *chewing* Mmm, not bad. *keeps eating*

At the same time – his sister’s reaction: *chewing* *makes a disgusted face* *immediately looks for a place to spit it out*

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Before picture. I wish I had an after.

Everyone else: Shocked that Dustin liked it!

He made me try it to and luckily I’d already had enough whiskey shots in me to not taste or smell so well, or care for that matter. I was smart and only ate one individual bean though. It was not good! I was quick to wash it down with some delicious, fruity wine. Ugh!

I wish I had a close up photo of it to share but y’all have to settle for Googling that gooey mess.

Continuing the flashback: My pine cone!! 😀

Back in February, hubby and I went on our belated honeymoon to lovely Colorado. Looking back through my posts, I’ve realized I never really mentioned it or what we did. One day we went snowshoeing in Rocky Mountain National Park. We didn’t get far with my bum knee and it was a very cloudy day so we didn’t want to be stuck out there too long. However, on our way back to the car I saw a couple of pine cones. They were just the tiniest, cutest things ever! I brought one home as a souvenir, because I’m weird like that. So anyway! While we were in Japan at our friend’s house, we stepped outside and sis-in-law pointed out this perfect little pine cone in the middle of the street. I swear I didn’t see that there on our way in and it’s not like it was a street full of traffic. It was more of a dead end kind of street. So for this little pine cone to be sitting there so perfectly was fate! Right? I told you I’m weird. I guess I’m starting a vacation pine cone collection?!

 

Haha, well I hope you enjoyed the two random little stories. Wait for day 4. That’s when it get’s really interesting, maybe.

 

 

Japan Day 3 – A Relaxing Day

Who’s been waiting to read the next installment of our Japan trip? I’m really enjoying writing about our trip one day at a time. It helps me relive the moments and kind of extends the trip in my mind. I think I did a fairly good job of keeping a mental travel journal. The next trip we go on I plan on having an actual journal to write in.

Day 3 started out much like day 2. The three of us (hubby, sis-in-law, and myself) had breakfast at the hotel. We met up with our friend shortly after. His family was going shopping and we were going to be adventurous! He took us a few blocks down to an onsen, or public bath house/hot springs. This was definitely an experience that anyone visiting Japan should try out. Basically, you get naked, wash yourself, and relax in one of many hot baths. There are separate areas for men and women and there were indoor and outdoor baths. Hubby said there was a sauna as well, but SIL and I had no one to guide us through so we were lost little ducklings.

There are a few important things to know when at an onsen:

First, you get nekkid! Everyone is nekkid, so you have to throw any body issues out the window. Embrace yo self! Believe me, I know it’s difficult. As if I wanted SIL and all the little old Asian ladies to see me in my big ol’ birthday suit. No. Not in America. That is not a part of our culture, but we weren’t in America so as I said before: when in Rome… Besides, we’ll never see those people again. I was not about to miss out on the experience over my personal insecurities. Going in, I knew hubby would have no qualms about it. He’s a free spirit and a guy so I figured he’d fit in (I was correct, he loved it.).

Second, no hair in the bath water! Oops. SIL and I didn’t know this little rule but there was a kind lady who quietly came over and informed us. So ladies (and gents with long hair) don’t forget to tie it up. Also, you have two towels: a regular towel to dry yourself off with after (leave that in your little locker with your clothes) and a smaller wash towel you use when cleaning yourself before getting in the bath. This second towel should not be in the bath either. You can leave it near you outside of the bath, or place it on top of your head. It also comes in handy if you want to cover your secret bits while walking around the bath area – as long as you’re small. Otherwise, you have to decide what you’re more comfortable exposing to the cold, cold air after getting out of the warm water.

Third, the baths have different temperatures and colors. That’s because different springs will have different temps and minerals. Us girls didn’t know so we only tried out two baths. One inside that seemed more like a hot tub and one outside. We were probably only in the water about 30 minutes or so before we got too warm and decided we were done. We probably should have cleaned and rinsed the minerals off us after but we didn’t.

The onsen pretty much set the mood for the day. It was a relaxing start to our Saturday. Sis and I waited for the guys at the eating area and found water to sip on. That’s another important tip: stay hydrated! Sitting in a hot bath for a while can make you really thirsty. When they were done we headed back to the hotel to grab our stuff since we were staying in another part of Tokyo for the rest of the trip. But not without a stop at our friend’s house! And a good ol’ cookout!

We all made the journey to the house and walked by a small bakery. I did not pass up the opportunity to try another pastry in Japan. I wasn’t sure what the etiquette was for buying items, so I just grabbed a bag of pre-wrapped donut holes? Yes, that’s a question mark because they looked like it but I dunno Japanese. There could be surprise banana for all I knew (or wished…)! Surprise banana – yea, that’s a thing now. Hmm. Maybe not. Before I get too off-topic…they were delicious! We continued onward and checked out the house.

Shortly after arriving we learned that a trip to the grocery store was called for. While I didn’t really want to go (so much walking), I tagged along because that meant more time spent with our friend. I mean, he was the reason we were there in the first place, so this little piggy sucked it up and went to market. The grocery store was cool. The meat section had ALL parts of the animals available. Maybe not all, but a lot more than you’d find at a typical American grocery store. Then there was the deli/freshly made food section…Oh my goodness. It smelled amazing and looked good! We knew it’d be a while before we got to eat so we gathered up some sushi and onigiri. After finishing up our shopping trip and getting back to the house we chowed down. Om nom nom.

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This is what I’m calling Japanese Mike’s Hard Lemonade. 7% lemony alcohol

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Here’s a flattering photo of my handsome hubby and adorable sister in law. Oh, and a not so flattering photo of me. Oh well, at least I look taller than I am.

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Grocery store sushi and onigiri (it was prettier but shifted in transit)

I’ve never been one to try sushi – California rolls are my only adventure into that world. The thought of eating raw fish just never sat well with me. In America. But (repeat after me) when in Rome… I tried several different things. And I liked them all for the most part. Gosh, I’m hungry just thinking of all that rice. I love rice. We watched Japanese TV for a little bit after and headed downstairs to rejoin the family while the food was grilling. Drinks were poured and stories were told. Lots of drinks. It was a blast getting to know our friend’s family better. We even met his Japanese host dad from the time he had studied in Japan a few years before. We also enjoyed some ice cream and smores before we headed out. We still had about an hour of travel to get to our hotel so we kind of left in a rush so we could catch the train.

It was a long day, kind of like this blog post. After getting settled into our room, we all kind of passed out again… Goodnight, Day 3.

 

First night in Japan!

Our first stop after landing was the bathroom! I avoid drinks on the plane due to tiny bathrooms, so once we get close to the airport I chug water like I’m about to be stranded on a desert island… Desert island? Surrounded by sea water? Do those really exist? Whatever… Hello weird toilets! So at the airport the choices were a traditional squat toilet or a Western-style toilet with buttons. Say what?! Obviously, I’m not about that life for the squat toilet. Shoot, I would’ve fallen on my butt into it probably. No thanks! Western-toilet it was. So in Japan, the toilets have bidets! Clean butts for everyone! Now that we’re back home I think we all have mentioned that we miss the Japanese toilets at least once or twice.

Our next stop was the customs/immigration line. Since we had stopped for a potty break, we missed the long lines (plus I think we were the only international flight at that time). We were done in under 5 minutes. Wahoo! Now what? Gotta get some cash money, yo. After spending some time on the phone with our credit card company to get a PIN number we had some dinero. (It was a new credit card account and I didn’t realize I needed to set the PIN before getting a cash advance). Conveniently, just across the ATMs was a booth we could rent a portable Wi-Fi unit. This thing came in handy since not too many places offered free wifi. There are ways to get free wifi, especially as a visitor, by downloading a few apps sponsored by the government (I think it’s the government). I don’t remember what the apps were but there was a brochure at the airport with information. We picked up our wifi unit and off we went to the area we would catch our train from. After sis-in-law picked up her prepaid rail pass (she was going to be making a long day-trip visit to Mt. Fuji) we hopped on our train. A few stops later we were walking in rain to our hotel. On our way there we saw two Japanese men stumbling about. One was helping his obviously drunk friend get to the station. Oh don’t you know how to welcome people, Japan? 🙂

Since we didn’t really have much sleep on the plane and we were tired we almost fell asleep as soon as we got settled down. However, our stomachs grumbled and mumbled and we decided to wander around for food – not really though. Hello, we’re in a foreign country and don’t know the language. We were not about to get lost. We asked the front desk staff for help and suggestions. We chose a little ramen restaurant a few minutes away. Thank goodness for pictures on menus. Our food was out fairly quickly and it was also pretty inexpensive for the three of us. The food was beyond delicious and very filling. One thing about Japan: you do not tip and you still get superb service! We quietly said arigato (thank you) and were on our way. We stopped at 7-11 to get some snacks in case we had late-night munchies and to get more cash out. I bought a delicious looking chocolate mousse thing. I had no idea what surprises I’d encounter when I ate it.

True story (as all of this is): I forgot to get a utensil of some kind to eat the deliciousness mentioned above. What did I do? Well, hubby had fallen asleep and the lights were out so I sat in my bed (we had individual beds) and used my tongue like a puppy to eat the darn thing! There was chocolate mousse, surprise banana, and a little brownie-type thing at the bottom. The banana was seriously a surprise, especially in the dark, haha. The next day I learned how to use the Google translate app to read the ingredients and lo and behold the kanji for banana was on a very prominent sticker on the package. My bad. And that’s how I learned to write banana in Japanese kanji (バナナ).

With full bellies and tired bodies we slept great and were ready for the big wedding the next day!

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Delicious chocolate banana thing!

 

 

Friendsgiving 2015

This past weekend we celebrated Friendsgiving! We had a great time. Everyone brought amazing food. Soooo much food!

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Missing in photo: lots of turkey and our desserts

We had turkey, mashed potato casserole, green bean casserole, corn bread, rolls, salad with delicious dressing, rice & quinoa stuffing, mac and cheese, and an oh-so gooey pumpkin pecan cobbler with ice cream. My mouth is watering just thinking of it again.

The day started off with the hubby and I grocery shopping and hitting the liquor store. Hello, bourbon. When we got home we dashed to cleaning the living room, dining room, bathroom, and kitchen. I had to make as much countertop available as I could. Unfortunately, in the process of clearing out the dining room, our bedroom and closet got stuck with all the random stuff we had. Our room looked like a tornado hit it. It didn’t help that our dogs LOVE taking out the stuffing from anything that they can (mostly from their doggy bed), so there was green and white stuffing everywhere!

Our friend Steve was the first to arrive, hours ahead of time. All hail Steve, bringer of the great turkey (and extra plates/bowls/other stuff)! We got the turkey in the oven and then watched the Evil Dead movies along with Dean. Dessert and wine was next to arrive. I mean Leslie was. 😛 We downed a couple bottles of fruity wine down before the festivities even started. Oops. Everyone else arrived around the time we had originally set so our apartment was super lively!

Friendsgiving had its hiccups: I forgot about the bacon for the potatoes (I know, how dare I?!), we didn’t have enough appropriate utensils so Steve and I ended up with spoons, my timing for the sides I made was off so we started later than expected. But, I’m so thankful to have such wonderful friends. They pitched in to make it an overall success. It doesn’t matter that we had to cram 11 people into our tiny apartment because we were together and got to spend some quality time playing the world’s worst game ever. Cards Against Humanity. It’s always good fun.