Monday, January 30, 2012

Weight Loss - Week 2

*First, let me begin by stating that this is not going to become a blog solely about me trying to lose weight. Because really, who would want to read that. I have some more crafty posts to do this week.

I finished my second week on Weight Watchers today and begin my third. I found myself noticeably less hungry this week as opposed to last week, which just goes to show how much I was overeating. I used far less of my extra points for the week, primarily because I was choosing more fruit and low point snacks. This week I got into the rut of weighing myself every single day, and quickly realized this is NOT a good idea. While sticking to the plan, I was actually gaining a pound or two. This had me confused. I checked with others on Twitter and also did my research on Weight Watchers website and realized why this was the case. Since none of you want too much information about me, let's just say this may happen each month.

Overall, I am continuing to feel so much better. I have way more energy during the day and I am certainly feeling more productive. I continued to adapt many of our meals that we already eat. I began using Chobani as a substitute for many things after discovering this on Pinterest and I cannot tell the difference. I even used it in a tomato sauce instead of heavy cream. I also made quite a few more meals from Skinny Taste and they were all wonderful. Here are the ones I used this week

Crock Pot Chicken Taco Chili

Black and White Chocolate Chip Clouds

Pasta with Italian Chicken Sausage, Peppers and Escarole

Steak Sandwiches

My husband has also been thrilled with all of Gina's recipes so far and he finds the portions great. I have more plans to try some of her recipes this week. So, here is where I stand after finishing my second week

Began 1/15 - 156.5 pounds

Today 1/30 - 147.5 pounds

Lost - 2.5 pounds this past week for 9 pounds total

Pounds to reach goal of 113 - 34.5 pounds

Monday, January 23, 2012

Weight Loss - Week 1

Today officially completes my first week on Weight Watchers. As I mentioned previously, I love Weight Watchers because I can so easily adapt it to my lifestyle. I can easily take any recipe and calculate how many points it is simply by entering the ingredients, which also means I can lighten it up if necessary. Another aspect of Weight Watchers that I like is that I can take any item I bought at the store and enter the nutrition information to find out how many points it is...heck, the even have an app where I can scan the UPC code for point! This just makes it so easy for me!
Courtesy of Kristen and Pinterest, I found this fabulous blog SkinnyTaste . She has wonderful recipes that are healthy and she already had the nutrition information and Weight Watchers points figured out! I tried a couple of her recipes this week and absolutely loved all of them. I didn't take pictures of any of our meals, so I will just include the links.
Baked Eggplant Sticks
Baked Chicken Parmesan
Broiled Tilapia with Tomato Caper Sauce
And last but not least, her wonderful Chocolate Cupcakes , which are made from a store bought cupcake mix and are beyond delicious!

I have truly felt so much better this week, being aware of what I am eating makes me think before just grabbing anything. I find that I leave meals filled but not stuffed! Also, I have found that I have more energy and in reality have been drinking only 2-3 cups of coffee in the morning, as opposed to the pot I used to drink every morning. This has not actually been a planned, just something that happened. So, here is where I stand after my first week

Began 1/15 - 156.5 pounds
Today 1/23 - 150.0 pounds
Lost - 6.5 pounds
Pounds to reach goal of 113 - 37 pounds

- Posted using BlogPress from my iPad

Sunday, January 15, 2012

My Big Goal

Yesterday on Twitter Katherine, Carolyn and I were discussing cowboy boots. I have two basic pairs, one black and one brown. Katherine then showed a picture of her awesome Boots which I decided I had to have. I currently wear my boots with my jeans over them, however if I am going to spend money on boots this awesome I want to see them! The problem is, I am not a fan of my legs in skinny jeans or leggings. Add to it that I am only 4'11" and my short legs look so chunky if my pants are tucked into boots. As a result, I just figured I would never buy the boots. But, if you follow me on Pinterest you know that I found tons of boots I loved yesterday. So, I made the decision I am going to have these boots and wear them no matter what it takes!
Right after our wedding I went on Weight Watchers (odd AFTER the wedding, I know) and was able to go from a size 10 to a 2 in about a year. Of course, when I got pregnant I was to lazy to work out and admittedly ate poorly. Not much has changed...until tomorrow! I have the common sense to know tht I am older now and have also had a child, so I may never be a size 2 again and that is OK. In fact, the size is not that important. I just want to wear clothing I like and feel comfortable in them. Obviously I would like to also be healthy, but if we are keeping it real here...this all started with a purely vain/materialistic goal. And really, I am ok with that. So, when I reach my goal I will purchase my boots and a pair of skinny jeans or leggings. And by the time this happens. If the pants tucked into leggings look is no longer popular, then by golly I will wear them around my house!
So, I am back on Weight Watchers as of 5 minutes ago. Starting tomorrow I will be keeping track of what I eat and weighing myself every Monday (since weight loss fairies don't exist I will not be weighing myself tomorrow because there will be no change overnight). The other thing I love about Weight Watchers is they give you a healthy goal range. Per them, my healthy range is 102-128. I picked 113 as my goal because it is in the middle.
I plan to blog every Monday about where I am to keep me accountable. So, here we go
Today 1/13 weight - 156.5 pounds
Goal - 113 pounds
Pounds to lose - 43.5 pounds

- Posted using BlogPress from my iPad

Wednesday, January 11, 2012

Twirl Skirt and T-shirts

Late last night I finished a skirt for Eleanor that I started before Christmas.  Just like the 2 previous items I blogged about, I had cut all of this before Christmas, however I was just not able to finish in time.  This is the  second time I made this skirt, the first was for Christmas
I struggled with this pattern a bit the first time, primarily because of all the different layers and trying to follow the directions. There is no problem with the directions, it is just one of those patterns that you have to make at least once to fully grasp.  Eleanor loved this skirt so much and really wanted another one.  This is a great skirt because it takes a yard or less each of 4 different fabrics.  The only problem I have found is finding 4 different fabrics that match and are a small enough for each print to be seen.  I searched at JoAnn before Christmas and found this line of 3 and added the polka dot to give me the fourth.  
I think this fabric will get us through different seasons because of the colors, and I also did go a size bigger because Eleanor loves longer skirts.  I also used two of the fabrics to applique a t-shirt to match and let her pick the design.  Here is the finished project
 not sure what kind of pose this is

 Another project I worked on yesterday was personalizing some t-shirts.  I have wanted an embroidery machine for such a long time, however I am not sure I can justify the expense of a good one.  Actually, I am sure I cannot justify the expense.  While messing around on my Silhouette SD yesterday, a light went on in my head.  I can use their iron on vinyl and make personalized t-shirts.  I always buy lots of long sleeve or short sleeve t-shirts at WalMart and Target each season for applique and as basics for other clothing I make.  They are an inexpensive way to add something to the different skirts and pants I sew for Eleanor.  Here are the 3 I made yesterday, they were so very simple and I love the results.

Tuesday, January 10, 2012

Walt Disney World

*Disclaimer - picture heavy post, I mean lots of pictures. Really!*
Back in September we went to Walt Disney World for a week.  I know lots of people have the perfect way to see Disney and other Orlando attractions.  What we did worked great for us, however we only have one child and at 5, Eleanor did not fully know what to expect, so we just went with no plans.  I must also state that I am a die hard Disney fan.  It is my favorite place and I was so excited to take Eleanor there.  My husband can take it or leave it, so he was really a great trooper.  We went Labor Day weekend and stayed for the whole week after.  This worked perfectly for us because preschool was not back in session yet, however pretty much everyone else is.  While the weekend was a bit crowed (but not bad) the week was dead.  In fact, a very nice employee at the bus depot told me that the day after Labor Day is their biggest departure date of the year and that it begins their slowest week of the year.  Perfect!  And I kid you not, we never waited for more than 20 minutes for a ride - and that was at rides like Splash Mountain, Thunder Mountain Railroad, etc.  We did stay there at the Port Orleans Riverside which we loved and will stay at next time.  Also, we had friends that told us that in September the meal plan is always free if you stay there.  We had plenty of food in the meal plan and were never hungry.  We did get the park hopper passes so we could have the flexibility to go anywhere we wanted.  Also, we added the water parks to our tickets.  While there was not a great deal for Eleanor to do at Typhoon Lagoon, she did have a blast at Blizzard Beach.  We were able to spend time at every single park including 2.5 days at the Magic Kindgom, which was her favorite.  So, here is my picture heavy post.
This may be the only picture of me on my blog
Princess breakfast
watching the princesses arrive

when Daddy takes pictures

Every single day when we got back to the room the housekeeper had arranged Eleanor's stuffed animals in a different pattern.  It was adorable and so sweet.

Telling Vidia that our cat is blind

Monday, January 9, 2012

Finish 2 for 2012

I finished my second project for 2012 last week, another Leighanna.  This time I made the Leighanna into a top and used the Scientific Seamstress Easy Fit Pants.  I used this flannel that I found at JoAnn before Christmas for $2.49/yard.  I bought extra to make 4 doll outfits, which I still need to finish.
 Here is the finished outfit.  I usually like to do the contrasting cuff on the pants as a ruffle, however Eleanor has decided she no longer likes ruffle pants.  Go figure, but not worth my time to make something she will not want to wear.  I love the addition of the ball fringe to this pattern, I may start adding it to other things.  As is normal for Eleanor these days, I cannot really get her to stand and smile for a picture.  She insists on posing.

I am now ready to work on my third finish for the year.  I am going to make her the Bella Twirl skirt with a matching applique t-shirt.  This is already cut and started, so I should have it finished in a day or two at the most.  

Monday, January 2, 2012

My First Finish for 2012

I finished my first project of the year today.  In my previous post, I mentioned that my goal for this year was to finish all of my unfinished projects, beginning with the projects that were already cut.  The first project I decided to finish was to make the Sis Boom Leighanna with this fabric and trim.
This is a flannel fabric that I got on sale at JoAnn before Christmas (it was supposed to be a Christmas gift for Eleanor, but obviously a bit late).  I sometimes have people find my choice of flannel for clothing to be odd, however I love it.  For winters in Northeast Ohio, flannel is warm and cozy so I think it is perfect.  This was my second time making something with this pattern.  The first time was when I was testing the pattern so I went very slowly and took notes while I did it, just in case there was anything I wanted to share with Carla.  This time, knowing how easy it goes together, I was able to quickly put the dress together.  

I always like to make matching hairbows for each of Eleanor's outfits.  Lately,while wasting productively searching Pinterest, I have been playing with different ideas for hair accessories.  Here is what I made

There are many tutorials out there for these so this idea is NOT mine.  What I have done is mess with different aspects and put them together for one that works for me.  I used some of the leftover aqua flannel and also some leftover Bliss from last year. I used our lovely biscuit cutters to trace two different sizes of circles; I then cut a total of 12 circles from each fabric.  
I have seen many bloggers cut out a floral shape instead of a circle and I do actually have a stacked set of floral cutters that I could trace, however that is more time consuming that I am interested in.  I have seen other bloggers that then quarter the circle and trim, however mine never look nice when I do that.  So, this time I winged it and just left them as circles.  So, I folded each circle in half
 and then into thirds
 Now here is where my fabulous photography skills make this little tutorial just fabulous.  
Perhaps if I am going to post a tutorial on here ever again I will need to take better pictures!  Anyway, I cut a small circle of felt and began placing the petals side by side.  I tried sewing them on this time as opposed to hot gluing them, which I did before, and I have no opinion on one being better than other.  After completing the first row I added the second row of petals.  I picked up some fabric covered buttons at JoAnn, covered them with the Bliss, and sewed them onto the center.  I then glued a barrette on the back of one and a pin on the back of the other.  Since I am sure my instructions are not real clear, the best tutorial I have found out there is here Here is the finished product

Had to add this, not sure why she thought this was a great pose....
So here is my first completion for 2012!  My next plan is to tackle this set and complete the outfit for Eleanor and her 4 dolls.