Wednesday, October 30, 2013

Breaking News!!!

I surprised myself this week and went jogging twice in two days.  I know that may not sound like a big deal to some but to me it's major.  My hip hasn't given out on me yet, and lets hope I didn't just jinx myself.  I've been heading over to the running track in the park these days rather than jog on the street Just for change of scenery at the moment.  I didn't realize I'd actually enjoy jogging around a track, over and over and over in the same ole circle but it's really no big deal and I find I can monitor my progress much better.  I always have my step/distance/calorie counter clipped to my sock and this way if I'm feeling full of energy I can run laps till I drop, or walk one and jog one (like I did today: I did 6 laps, walking one then jogging one and so on).  I felt really good but it was just after work and I was tired so I cut it short and only did a total of 3km.  I really want to do 5km daily but it all depends on how fragile my hip is.  When I got home, after cooling/warming and drinking lemon water, I took a hot shower and put good ole BenGay to work on my aching shin splints... I need new shoes or new insoles to absorb the shock.  I'll go with new insoles first because I'm cheap like that. 

As for the scale... I put that liar in punishment.  Locked it up in the closet for two weeks.  And yes I've been doing the mason jar meals this week... lentil soup, oatmeal and salad all prepared in mason jars.  Sure the jar is heavy and fragile but for me they're so convenient.  I just need to find new mason jar meals to make!   

Tuesday, October 29, 2013

Knitting Knostalgia

Remember I said I was feeling all nostalgic the other day? Well I've learned how to knit in the process of my nostalgia.  Seriously!  Last week a coworker gave me a book with step by step instructions on how to knit.... and I failed miserably trying to follow the instructions in that book.   I turned to YouTube and found a very simple and easy to follow tutorial on how to cast on and begin knitting.  So as you can see from my four rows, I sort of got the hang of it.  Ok sure I got a couple of mistakes in those four rows but nothing to go insane over so I'm happy.  Won't be long before I'm knitting mittens like my Granny used to make for me every winter.  

Sigh, you see now why I'm feeling nostalgic?  I'd be pulling out the note pad and writing my Granny about how I finally learned to knit and I know she'd be so happy.  She was thrilled when I made a granny-square afghan a long time ago when she taught me to crochet.  Believe it or not, I still have said afghan!   She's also the reason I cross stitch, when she insisted I purchase another kit and stitch for her because the first one was a major FAIL.  Every time I think of that I have to giggle to myself.  The card she sent me in the mail that time was so sweet, then it ended with "now go buy another one and read the directions make it again".  I still have that card tucked into the pages of my Bible.  Crazy but I kept pretty much everything my Granny ever sent me.  

Hey Gran, look, I can knit!!!  :'-)

When I finally do knit a pair of mittens, they'll be just for her.  

Saturday, October 26, 2013

Nostalgic October

I've been feeling very nostalgic this week, not sure if it's because of seeing how all the little kids are excited for Halloween, or the flurries we had the other night on my way to work.... just a combination of all I suppose.

I remember when we were kids, Mom always took us out on Halloween.  We would use old pillow cases as our goodie bags and we would head out right after dinner, usually as soon as it was getting dark.  Then we'd walk up one side of the street for a few blocks then cross over and come up the other side all the way home.  We'd be out for hours!  Mom was cool like that!   I'm not sure if it was because she knew we were having so much fun or if it was because she wanted to run into some of her friends and catch up on the neighbourhood gossip!  Probably a mix of everything really.  

I remember someone gave us a can of fruit cocktail in our Halloween sacks.  Crazy but true!  Never did like when folks gave out apples or raisins either.  I went into the dollar store today and saw quite a crowd getting costumes together... and then on the other side of the same aisle was the Christmas stuff!  I love when they do that (NOT!).

October....and nostalgia.... sigh.

Wednesday, October 23, 2013

Sewing Hoo-Ha

I borrowed my sisters sewing machine a couple of weeks ago.  Couldn't help but ask if she was in a hurry to get it back because guess who has no clue how to use a sewing machine?  Yup, you guessed correct if you said me!  I found this cute and real funny photo over at OPQuilt and it was right on the money when it comes to how I see a sewing machine.  Actually, I cracked up laughing when I spotted the "hoo-ha" because actually, I call everything on that machine a "hoo-ha".

Anyway, eventually I'll have to get with the program and learn how to use it because I have a head full of ideas of things I want to make.  My creative side has grown ten times as big... you know, like how the grinch's heart grew ten sizes, well, it's rather the same concept.

I do want to make a quilt one day.  I can envision a nice holiday Christmas type of quilt made with fabric squares of many different holiday patterns.  *dreamy sigh*.   But that will have to wait because I'm well over my head with crafts right now, still, I wanted to share! 

Tuesday, October 22, 2013

Kick Start

You know, sometimes it really is a good idea to read real blogs by real people.  What I mean is, right now I'm on a mission to drop another 20 pounds.  I wouldn't say I'm unhealthy at the moment but I certainly could use a few pounds off my 5' 10" frame.   I've been at it for a while now and hit more than enough lengthy plateaus and that's when I really started scouring the blogosphere for real personal weightloss blogs to see how many other folks have experienced the same and what changes did they make to overcome the "dead-zone".   

I've gone back to jogging which I really enjoy and believe me it's really pulling in my belly!  I did read somewhere that jogging is the fastest way to lose belly fat.  Hey, it could have been a misleading article for all I know but I can honestly say that my belly is shrinking, so are my hips and thighs... but I'm not losing any weight!  Again!  I did experience close to a two pound drop recently but I thought, hey cool, finally the plateau has lifted.  Well, no, it's not lifted.  So I did what I did before....

I read more personal blogs and found this article written by Lyn over at Escape from Obesity (click the link, show some love) and she discusses increasing her calorie intake to kickstart her metabolism.  You know, until I read that article I never would have considered increasing my calories.  It is worth a try after all.  I'm down to consuming ... or ATTEMPTING to consume 1000 calories a day but breakfast on Saturday morning that consists of two fried eggs with a slice of cheese melted in it, fried turkey bacon, brown beans, a hashbrown and toast ... oh and a super size coffee... well, that pretty much uses up more than half of my daily count while the rest of the week I seem to be starving myself because I work nights, dinner time for my husband is breakfast time for me so I usually skip a meal so, ya, I need help not just with kickstarting my metabolism but getting some better eating habits.  Lyn's article was a good place to start, either way.

I've increased myself to 1200 (the recommended amount apparently according to the LoseIt app) and I'll stick to it for two weeks to see if I notice any changes in how I feel, ie: sluggish, stuffed, energized.  Of course this means I'm also going to prepare my breakfast and dinner meals in advance... break out the mason jars! 

I love mason jars!!   
  • Oatmeal in a jar for  breakfast,
  • salada in a jar for lunch,
  • lentil soup in a jar for dinner.  
Meanwhile, I'll continue with the jogging because I need to keep my mind focused on exercise too.


Saturday, October 19, 2013

We Heart It

I signed up for that WeHeartIt social media site.  I had only stumbled into it a couple of times but always found something interesting so figured why not sign up and add it to my list of sites.

I did just that.
Even installed the app on my minipad too.

Then went searching the site and it dawned on me. Remember how once upon a long long time ago most adult folk referred to MySpace as a teens haven?  Well that's the opinion I give to WeHeartIt.   No matter what word I searched, the resulting images were of teen males baring their abs or teen girls showing cleavage or pouting in a selfie photo.



See how quickly I deleted that account!  I'll stick with Pinterest to keep track of sites I want to revisit, and Flickr has a nice favourites section set up and it suits my needs however, it was an interesting experience if I must say so.  No harm in checking it out.  Now, on to StumbleUpon!

Re A Crochet

I learned how to crochet a rose yesterday! And the fun thing is it only took a whole twenty minutes if even.  See, this is why I love YouTube!  Sure it's a great social media to share home movie clips with friends and family but it's also my go-to place when I want to learn something new.  Not everyone on YouTube wants to show you how to jump off the shed roof on a skateboard and bust up your head.  Ya, I can't believe someone was THAT stupid!  Ha!

Ok so back to the learning process.  My first crochet rose came out pretty cute, but as per usual, the first one is always the one that encourages you to try again and improve on what you criticized the first one for.  So the first rose I didn't roll it up tight enough so it looked a bit lopsided and I used he wrong size crochet hook for the yarn I was using but other than that all went well.  I still need to follow the pattern a few more times before I have it committed to memory but I intend to make a couple to go on my winter hat! 

The video is HERE in case anyone is interested in learning the rose but remember it's in UK terms and not USA terms. 

Next..... Knitting!

Friday, October 18, 2013

Still At It

Surprisingly enough, I'm still jogging! My hip has been acting up a bit but I've been allowing it time to heal between runs and I've got a tiny bit of shin splints which tells me I need new insoles for my runners (or a whole new pair of runners, yikes!).

I have to give most of the credit to the Zombies Run app that inspired me to run faster on some occasions and on others, to just not talk myself out of going for the run in the first place.  But the app does get boring along the way and personally, it is beginning to distract me from the beautiful autumn scenery.... and from watching my surroundings!  I ditched the app and now am just running with a playlist like I was a while back.  And yet again, I have multiple playlists made so I just select which one that matches my mood.

I've been urging myself to run on rainy days for the sole purpose of getting accustomed to the cooler and more uncomfortable weather conditions.  It is my goal (as crazy as it may seem) to run throughout the winter season, at least 3 days a week - Monday, Wednesday & Fridays.  I'll leave Tuesday & Thursday as my in home workout using some of the exercise videos I've found on Youtube that involve a bit of handheld weights. 

Eating .... oh my oh my... the eating habits are out of this world!  I indulge in a big breakfast on Saturdays and Sundays... these are the only days of the week (aside from holidays) that my husband and I can get to sit down to breakfast together so we enjoy every second of it, loitering at the table talking over toast, milk, eggs, beans, turkey bacon.... sigh.  Dinners on Friday, Saturday & Sunday nights are also the only time I really get to sit and have dinner with him as well so those are big well cooked meals where as throughout the rest of the week it's usually left overs or something I can throw together quickly.  Being as it was the Canadian Thanksgiving on Monday past, you know I ate more than one individual should eat.  I'm not guilty one bit either!!  I just know I need to get with more oatmeal (oatmeal in a jar sounds nice about now).  I need to get my lentil soup brewing and bottle that up.  I need to get some carrots and apples for snacks.  Basically I need an overhaul of my current menu so that's in the works.. .you know how everyone like to "start fresh on Monday"... so Monday it is!!  :-)

The main thing is, I'm still encouraged to keeping fit.  By exercising regularly... and I also acknowledge that I need to improve my eating habits so at least I confess to that guilty pleasure of chocolate bars, cookies, and captain crunch cereal. 

Not giving up is important. 

Staying positive is important.

I can do it!!! 

Wednesday, October 9, 2013

It's Shoe Box Time!

Like any other year at around this time, our church starts to put up posters advertising the upcoming Operation Christmas Child shoe box donation.  

And like any other year, we set out to shop for kids who would otherwise not have any gifts this Christmas season. 

Though it's not completely about the giving of a gift to the child, but giving them a bit of hope and a bit of joy.  Letting them know that there are people in the world who can give just a little bit of their time and make the effort of packing a small shoe box full of toys, school supplies, hygiene products and even some hard candies.

Seriously, it's just a small shoe box.  

You know the physical size of a shoe box so imagine how much it can hold.  That's right, not much!  At least not much by the standards of most children today who would expect to receive ipods, iphones, playstation3, nike shoes, and other expensive brand name items for Christmas.   What fits in the shoe box that brings smiles to these childrens' faces are bars of soap, lollipops, small packs of beads or hear bows, rubber balls, marbles, whistles and small stuffed teddies and hotwheels cars.  

What might be considered a small trinket to "fortunate" children, is a treasure beyond compare to the recipients of these shoe box gifts.  I hope, as with every other year, that those who may have never heard of this charity will decide to participate this year.  If you are unable to physically pack a box and take it to a drop off location then please do go an pack one online using the donation button.  Just think of all the joy you'll bring to one small child with one box.  Twice the joy for two children by packing two boxes....  Spread the word.  Spread the joy. 

Collection of the boxes will be November 18-24, 2013.  

Take the time this year to fill a shoe box for a child in need at Samaritan's Purse International.  Click the link for more information.   

Tuesday, October 8, 2013

World War Z

I got to see that film World War Z this past weekend and I must say it left me on the edge of my seat!  It was pretty good for a zombie movie.  I sort of expected it to be similar to those "night of the living dead" or 'Sean of the dead" type of films where the zombies are slow and creepy looking but in this film they were still creepy looking but the dudes were fast!  I mean olympic athlete fast!!  Now you know there is no way I'll be able to continue running in the early morning hours with the Zombies Run app.  Obviously that's just not going to happen.

Wednesday, October 2, 2013

October Love

I love October. 
I love everything about October. 

The mild weather while the leaves turn shades of yellow, brown and red. 

Thanksgiving... yes in Canada Thanksgiving is in October.  This year it lands on Monday, October 14th to be exact. 

And Halloween... no kids ever come to collect candy from our home though but that's ok, I still buy the big bag of tootsie rolls and full size chocolate bars and yes I confess it is simply because I KNOW that no children in cute and scary costumes will pass by looking for a freebie handout. 

October.... I love October!

I love that the farmers market will be loaded with fresh vegetables and lined with pumkins of all sizes. 


Rain... I do enjoy the rain more this time of year than in April.  Usuall by the time April arrives I've had it up to here with precipitation that I just want hot dry weather! 

October... what can I say about October.

The painting above is "October Rain by Arlon Rosenoff"

Tuesday, October 1, 2013

A Minute In Susan's Mind

I forgot to renew subscriptions to some magazines I enjoy reading.  First I was going to renew them but in the digital version on Zinio the other day but when they wouldn't accept the $5 coupon they emailed me then I decided against it since these particular magazines are better in the paper format anyway so no harm done.

I'm trying to delete some magazines from my ipad that are taking up space but the lovely glitch in the Zinio app only lets you delete the entire collection of same magazines at the same time.  Should you have one lone magazine, that trusty edit button doesn't appear.... holding your finger on the magazine hoping the X will appear only works sometimes...  I'm beginning to like paper magazines even more.

And will someone please tell me why I purchased SELF magazine?  I must have been over tired or just plain stupid.

I really don't have anything real to blog about today in case you haven't noticed.  I was just sitting here cleaning some old books and magazines off the ipad and got annoyed by that one issue of SELF that won't go away!  *giggles*