Monday, November 23, 2015

WWI #121 -Yo Yo

Back at the beginning of the year, I remember my weekly weigh-ins going back and forth ... 151 on week, 153 the next, and alternating week to week. I was frustrated that I was so close, but couldn't quite break into the 140s. Now, that weekly yoyo seems to be back, just 10 pounds up from earlier in the year. I'd LOVE to be back at 153! Alas ... I'll keep working. Numbers weren't great this week. Up 2.7 for the official Friday stat. The average did drop a bit (.8, to 162.4). Average intake was 2393. Average daily burn was 2829. I did end up with a small deficit for the week (-885).  Here's a quick week recap ...

  • Friday (1113): The elementary was out today, but I still had the middle school drop off. Hit the 10:00 Zumba class though, and got in some elliptical. Had a bridal shower in the evening for my niece.
  • Saturday (1114): Early basketball game, stopped off for donuts. Add in popcorn and Popeyes and only 40min on the elliptical ... not a great day for food and fitness.
  • Sunday (1115): Got in 40min on the elliptical, and also got in a nap. Big breakfast, and then soup at my MILs in the evening. 
  • Monday (1116): Back to the routine. Zumba, elliptical and bike. Should have done weights! Eating was a little high, but did keep it under 2000.
  • Tuesday (1117): Zumba, elliptical and bike ... and blog updates! That did mean a bit of sitting today. Snacking was a little high.
  • Wednesday (1118): Zumba, elliptical and bike. Bad food day, higher calories and all snack stuff. Had boy's basketball stuff all evening.
  • Thursday (1119): Zumba and elliptical ... didn't get to the bike, and didn't get in my evening Zumba (no one showed). Hubs birthday today, but he was off most of the evening doing a derby. I did make him a lemon jello cake, yummy!
Pictures From The Week
 #2 and his new personalized basketball shoes

 Back with my butt in the bleachers watching basketball.

 I ordered this artwork (image from Amazon) for Hub's birthday gift.

 Ask for a simple smile and I get this ... just blow!
Happy Birthday Hubby! I ♥ U!

Still some celebrations this weekend ... more birthday stuff for Hubs, and a wedding reception. Next week is of course Thanksgiving! The kids are only in school Mon and Tues, so the schedule will be a bit skewed. We'll see how it goes for weigh-in next Friday!

Tuesday, November 17, 2015

TV Tuesday - PlayOn and PrimeTime

Quite a while ago, I did a post about streaming shows vs watching them on DVD (I didn't even discuss watching anything "live" ... because I just don't do that!) I rarely watch DVDs anymore. Streaming is just so simple.

We have Netflix and Amazon Prime. Between the two, I have a "to watch" list a mile long. As I mentioned in my previous post, I also use the PlayOn service. 

PlayOn updated their program in October. It was a rather large change ... and I'm not very good with change. However I must say, after a couple hiccups, I am LOVING the updates, and it is really changing what I'm watching (keeping up with current shows rather than waiting for them to hit Netflix/Amazon or DVD). 

PlayOn works with your PC, and then can stream anything available on your computer to your television, via several different devices (we use a Roku box, that we have for Netflix/Amazon anyway). I love that I can watch downstairs in my gym while I workout. Most of the networks make their shows available online, and with my PlayOn service I just record them to my computer, and then stream them to my TV. The PlayOn service even skips the ads! I could always fast forward through them, but now it's automatic, and I love that! You can also subscribe to programs and they will record automatically. I even get my beloved captions on many of the networks and Hulu (the free version, I didn't want to pay for another streaming service!)

PlayOn is touted as a way to cut cable. Unfortunately ... we still have cable, as my boys MUST watch the NBA. The premium channels (HBOGO, AMC, USA, etc.) also require a cable login. But I still love PlayOn as it makes viewing shows on my timetable so much easier. 

So ... what am I watching?

I saw "Zoo" come up as a recently added program on Netflix, and I figured I'd give it a try. I guess it was a "summer show" on CBS. I'd just recently finished up Revolution (What I'm Watching October 2015) and so it was a bit hard to see the main swashbuckling hero from that show, now a stereotypical nerdy scientist. But I did like the show overall.

I'd heard quite a bit of buzz about "How To Get Away With Murder" but hadn't seen any episodes or really knew anything about it. The first season appeared on Netflix, so I watched. It was one that kept the excitement and interest. I finished it up as the new season began to air ... and so I've added it to my list of shows I'm keeping current on.

I've mentioned my favorites before ... Grey's Anatomy is at the top of the list. Two seasons ago, I mentioned the unique use of background music; familiar songs, reworked. I didn't see it last season, but now it's back. I really pay attention to the background music! I wasn't sure I cared enough able my other regulars to follow them week to week ... but now that PlayOn has made it so easy ... I am. I have subscriptions to Nashville, Scandal, The Good Wife and The Walking Dead. I'm only an episode or so behind on most, but I haven't caught ANY TWD yet ... although I have heard about Glen.

I recorded "The Voice" and got the kids watching it... I just wanted them to watch something other than "Friends" or "One Tree Hill."  I couldn't quite get interested enough myself (too much talking, not enough excitement for working out). #3 and #4 are completely hooked on it this season.

Hubs and I have been watching "Homeland" ... one we watch together, while lounging in bed and eating popcorn. 

What are YOU watching?
How do you watch your favorite shows?

Saturday, November 14, 2015

WWI #120 - Ups and Downs

I wasn't expecting this week to be good weight-wise, as I started off the weekend SO BAD as far as food and fitness (it was a "birthday week"). I was a little surprised to get the drop from last week (still up a smidge from two weeks ago), as the numbers for the week really weren't very good. While technically the scale shows a 1.2 drop from last week, my average was up 1.61 (163.20). Intake was up, averaging 2457, and average daily burn dropped to 2872. Still, I ended up with a weekly deficit of -827. Here's a quick week recap ...

  • Friday (1106): Did pretty good during the day, getting in elliptical, Zumba, bike and even weights! Kept calories okay, but then we went to a dinner theater with my folks. Cheesy bread there pushed me way over.
  • Saturday (1107): Basketball game at 8:00 in the morning. Got in a little elliptical, raked leaves and mowed the lawn. Hubs was out for the evening, so I could have/should have gotten in some evening workouts, but alas. Overate as well, tons of treats and some bakery items Hubs had brought home during the day.
  • Sunday (1108): Slept in, and had a marathon "Homeland" watching session complete with Hubby's popcorn. High calorie intake day, very little burn (absolutely lazy day!)
  • Monday (1109): Back at it with elliptical, Zumba, bike and weights. I didn't make my evening Zumba class, as I had to pick up #3 from basketball at the same time, but still almost a 30k day. Kept calories in check.
  • Tuesday (1110): My birthday. The usual school stuff, elliptical, Zumba and bike. In the evening we went out to dinner, which pushed intake calories high for the day.
  • Wednesday (1111): An hour of elliptical, Zumba and bike. Had to check #3 out of school for an orthodontist appointment, and PT conferences with the little boys in the evening. Calories were a little high.
  • Thursday (1112): I did get in my double Zumba today, as well as elliptical and bike. Kept calories right at 2000. 
A couple pictures from the week ...

 Dinner theater with my folks and child #3

My boys, kitties and a birthday cake

Saturday, November 7, 2015

WWI #119 - Up, Up, Up

Well dang, I wasn't able to hang onto the loss from last week. Up a little over the weekend, a small drop after a good Monday, then up a little again. Eating was up this week. I really am not sure why I had been more successful in controlling calories the past few weeks. I was back to my "norm" this week, with an average up above 2000 ... I didn't have one day under. Just had the munchies, and there was Halloween candy around, and other tempting treats. I upped my exercise too, but it just doesn't seem to matter. If I eat over 2000, the scale shifts up, regardless of deficit or extra activity.  NUMBERS: Friday weight was up 1.3 pounds. Average was only up .1 (161.59). Average intake was 2350. Average daily burn was 3106. It resulted in a deficit of -2796. Alas. Exercise UP, Eating UP, Weight UP.  Here's a quick week recap ...

  • Friday (1030): The kids were out of school, so I was able to hit a free Zumba class. Also got in an hour of elliptical and 30min on the bike. Too many treats, but just barely over 2000. Not bad for a Friday.
  • Saturday (1031): The youngest had an 8:00 basketball game. They won.   I made cookie press cookies (pumpkin shaped) in the afternoon. Hubs took #3 to a friend's for a party, and the younger two kidlets went trick-or-treating. I only got in an hour of elliptical today, but #4 (12-years old) hit a new high, 40,000 steps!
  • Sunday (1101): Slept in, then started the day off with a session on the elliptical. Didn't get back down to the gym though. A little nap, then off to my folks for the monthly "Waffle and Welatives" party. We also celebrate birthdays. My mom's (and mine, and Hubs) are coming up, so I picked up a cake from Sam's Club. As we went to pose for a picture, I proceeded to dump the cake upside down on the counter. Oops. Over in calorie oops too.
  • Monday (1102): Nice active day! Up early for some elliptical, then Zumba and some quick shopping stops. Got in additional Zumba and bike, and then hit an evening Zumba class too. Big stepping day, over 38,000 steps. Kept calories right at 2000.
  • Tuesday (1103): Scale did a drop after yesterday. Ate too much today though, just grabbing some of the kids Halloween candy and other treats. Even with an hour of elliptical, Zumba, and track time (almost five miles) while waiting at basketball practice, still a deficit, but ...
  • Wednesday (1104): Scale shifted up again. Got in my elliptical, Zumba and bike. Still too much snacking, just can't seem to stop. Spaghetti dinner and cheesy bread didn't help ...
  • Thursday (1105): Got in early elliptical, then additional to add up to an hour. Zumba in the morning, and some bike. I've gone to my evening Zumba class the last couple weeks, but when no one showed we went home. There were a couple people there today, so we danced. ;) I did stop and grab some Crazy Bread from Little Caesars on the way home though ... had a couple pieces.
***Pictures from the Week***
 Do these count as "costumes"? Off to trick-or-treat.
#4 gave all his candy to #5.
Neither of them like anything with nuts ... so those go to me. 
Mmmmm, Reeses!

 "OOPS"-sidedown Cake!

November Bloom?
I was shocked to see my lilac blooming again!
Not the entire tree, just some buds here and there.
I thought it was only a spring thing!

I hope to have a better eating week coming up ... but it hasn't started off very well.

Saturday, October 31, 2015

WWI #118 - Busy Week, Good Week

I was a little worried about this week. Basketball games, doctor, dentist and helping out at the school ... all were on the docket this week, and I don't do as well without my usual routine. But the scale showed success, even though my deficit wasn't quite as good as the week's past (just -734). NUMBERS:  Down 2.2 pounds from last Friday, the average went down just over two pounds too (161.49). Average intake was 1857, average daily burn was 3006.  Here's a quick week recap:

  • Friday (1023): Wasn't feeling 100%, but ended up hitting a $5 Zumba class and felt quite a bit better after. Got in elliptical and bike and spent the evening watching #3 in a basketball game.
  • Saturday (1024): Hubs was off early for a bike ride, so I hit a Saturday Zumba class. Then, there were three basketball games (one for #5, and two for #3). I ended up walking around quite a bit while watching and waiting between games, so even with no elliptical or bike, I got in the steps! Over in calories though, as Hubs and I indulged in popcorn while watching a DVD.
  • Sunday (1025): Hit Costco with Hubs, then we went to Rodizio as a family (sans #2 who was working). Just barely pulled even with calories in vs out (with just 40min elliptical). 
  • Monday (1026): Zumba (and baby shower for Nina, Betty Crocker and I made some muffins to take), some elliptical and bike, then an additional Halloween Zumba in the evening, 90minute class no less! Big activity day, and just not very hungry (or just to busy to eat). 
  • Tuesday (1027): After Zumba I had a doctor's appointment. Just my annual exam. It was nice to be in and out in under an hour, even with lab work and a flu shot. Got in elliptical and bike too. #5 had practice in the evening, so I jogged the track while I waited. Another big activity day, and still kept calories in check.
  • Wednesday (1028): After Zumba, I had to check #4 out of school for a dentist appointment. Got in my hour of elliptical during the day, but didn't get to the bike.
  • Thursday (1029): Accidentally slept in until after 7:00, just barely getting #3 to school on time. After dropping off elementary I simply stayed at the school for the parade, Thriller, #4's class party and then #5's class party (helping out at both). Felt off missing my morning Zumba, and then evening Zumba didn't happen either (as I was the only one who showed up). Still got in an hour of elliptical, eating edged a little high.
 Pictures from the Week

At the doctors office.

#5 as a basketball star on a Wheaties box

The kitties decided to get in on the action when he took it off ...

... a little video of #4 dancing to "Thriller"

A video posted by JenB (@jenblackham) on

Sunday, October 25, 2015

WWI #117 - Weekly Down, Identical Average

Last week, my official Friday weigh-in didn't change much from the week before, but my average dropped over two pounds. This week was the opposite. My official weigh-in was down, but my average stayed exactly the same. Like last week, my official Friday weigh-in was not my low for the week. Still working hard to back into the 150s (my happy-weight) and then into the 140s (goal).   NUMBERS: Down 1.6 for the official. Average was 163.3, identical to last Friday. Average intake was 2036. Average burn was 3202 ... that equated to a weekly deficit of -6079.

Weekly Recap ...
  • Friday: Hubs out of town and the kids out of school. I was able to hit a Zumba class though! The little boys wanted to go to the gym to play basketball, so I walked the track and rode a stationary bike while I kept an eye on them. My folks came over in the evening and we did pizza and games.
  • Saturday: No basketball today (Fall Break). I got in several sessions on the elliptical, and some bike. Pretty low-key day.
  • Sunday: An hour of elliptical and the reading/riding on the bike. My 12-year has started reading/riding on the bike too. Another low-key day. Did get in a Sunday nap. One of the higher calorie days.
  • Monday:  A "purple party" at Zumba, with a larger crowd than usual. Several sessions on the elliptical, and time on the bike. 
  • Tuesday: Busy day with Zumba, elliptical, bike and WEIGHTS. Walked the track in the evening during basketball practice. Also made homemade soup and breadsticks (and cinnamon rolls) for the family ... so calories were a bit higher today.
  • Wednesday: Zumba, elliptical and bike - and kept calories in check.
  • Thursday: Only morning Zumba today, as I was the only one there for the evening class. Still a 31k day with elliptical, bike and mowing the lawn. Kept calories in check too.

 Me on the track. The little boys goofing off on the court below. 

Hubs and his brother ... 
the Fall Food Tour in Seattle, Washington over the weekend.

I tried the "water and vinegar" trick to clean the microwave.
It worked. SO much better!

So that was my week. Encouraged that the scale is moving in the right direction ... it's just so SLOW. Weight fluctuates so much. Gotta just keep going. This next week will be a bit of a challenge as there are doctor/dentist appointments to interrupt my routine, and class parties at the school, and then another day off for the kidlets ... and then of course Halloween! 

Saturday, October 17, 2015

WWI #116 - Gain After Golden Corral

I had another pretty good weekend, and weight was going down. I expected a drop for the official weigh-in Friday morning ... but alas, it bopped up. I blame Golden Corral. You know, the all-you-can-eat buffet. We went on Thursday. I  didn't overeat,  had "dinner" very early in the day (around 5:00),  still had a deficit for the day ... so I really didn't think it would be that bad. But like last week, the scale shifted up from Thursday to Friday morning. 

My overall numbers for the week were good though ... only the .1 down for the official weekly check-in, but my average dropped 2.37 pounds (to 163.63) so I was happy about that. I did keep calories in check most of week, the average was 1864. I stayed active, and average daily burn was 3008.  Here's a quick recap of the week ...

  • Friday (1009): An hour of elliptical and 30min on the bike. I didn't have the energy to do Zumba on my own, and I haven't found a class that works with the middle-school's late start. Not a productive day. Hubs had a derby in the evening. Kept calories under 2000, but just barely.
  • Saturday (1010): Very productive day! Watched #5 in his  basketball game in the morning. For exercise, an hour of elliptical and 30min bike. Cleaning the house, vacuuming, organizing cupboards, laundry, dishes, bathrooms and mowing the lawn too. Helped #4 with some a school project. Hubs took the ducks to a farm. He brought home Krispy Creme doughnuts. I'd really limited calories for the day and wasn't sure I wanted to break that ... but I did have one. #4 resisted completely.
  • Sunday (1011): I had to hit church a little earlier than my usual, but I walked to/from. Also got in an hour of elliptical (three 20min sessions). We had a Texas Roadhouse dinner. I did limit myself to just one roll, and didn't overdo, but still one of the higher calorie days in a while. Intake and burn about even for the day.
  •  Monday (1012): Back to my early starts. Elliptical, Zumba, bike and some treadmill today. A bit on the WiiFit too. Hubs was gone all evening with #4 at a basketball game downtown. I stayed out of the candy corn completely and kept calories in check today.
  • Tuesday (1013): The kids went to school early enough that I came home and walked to Zumba. Also got in an hour of elliptical, bike, and 15min weights. Wimpy weight workout, but better than nothing, right? #5 had basketball practice in the evening. I wasn't up for jogging, but I still walked ... my ChargeHR was wonky giving me high readings. Not sure what was up, but my heart rate wasn't even though it said it was. Too many treats today.
  • Wednesday (1014): We were to wear purple to Zumba today. They took a big group picture. Early out at the elementary, as the kids have a long weekend for Fall Break. Still got in my bike, and 100min on the elliptical. I started a new show (Zoo) and I think it has me interested enough that I wanted to get in some extra sessions. 
  • Thursday (1015): The kids were out of school, so I slept in. Barely made it to 9:00 Zumba. I'd promised the little boys a trip to Golden Corral. Probably our last though, they were not impressed. #4 didn't eat much, didn't even have any dessert (usually that is his favorite part). Zumba in the evening too.
 I didn't take many pictures this week ...

The 6th grader is studying medieval times at school. 
Over the weekend we made a hennin (woman's hat) and a shield. 

 Kitten asleep IN my plant ... my poor, poor plant!

Tuesday, October 13, 2015

TV Tuesday - What I'm Watching

I didn't get a "What I'm Watching" post up in September ... but I have been watching, while working out of course! I finished the second season of Extant (Amazon Prime), and then watched both seasons of Revolution (Netflix). Both shows were exciting and action packed, perfect to keep my adrenaline pumping while exercising, and making me WANT to get back down to the gym to see what would happen next. 

I like Halle Berry. I really like Jeffrey Dean Morgan, who was a welcome addition to this second season. There were other familiar faces (Peyton, from OneTreeHill, The Governor from TheWalkingDead) and favorites from season 1. I like Sci-Fi, and I liked this summer series

Back when Revolution originally aired, my boys were interested and watched it week to week. I didn't. I always figured I would watch it at some point, and luckily I didn't see enough to spoil it for me (Series I've "Seen" But Never Watched). They never got around to watching the second season. It has been on Netflix for a while, but I just started watching. I'm a fan of post-apocalyptic stuff (tv/movies/books ... not real life though! Let's keep that stuff fiction!) so this was right up my alley. Lots of action. It kept my interest. I went into it knowing it would end at the second season (ratings dropped and it wasn't renewed) ... and while one storyline wrapped up, it was definitely left open-ended.  One little thing that made me laugh, one of the main characters, Charlie ... her pretty, long hair was down all the time. Never back in a braid or pony-tail. As a girl with long hair, it gets in the way, and I sure wouldn't want it flying around when I was fighting for my life. I can't even stand it down while I dance at Zumba.

When I finish a series, there is always that moment as I wonder what to watch next. It can be hard to make a commitment. Sometimes, I'll start a series and it just doesn't click. This time of year, the current shows are  starting back up too. I always wonder if I should watch my favorites week to week ... or just wait until the season is done.  So far, I've watched the first two episodes of Nashville (it doesn't come to Netflix or Amazon anyway). Grey's Anatomy is a favorite of mine ... I was thinking maybe I'd wait, but then I went ahead and watched the first episode. So far, I think I'll wait on Scandal and The Good Wife. I'm undecided on TWD. I'll probably catch the battle rounds of "The Voice" as well ...

What are YOU watching?

Saturday, October 10, 2015

WWI #115 - Good Numbers

I've mentioned several times, that weekends are hard for me. I know I'm not alone in this. More eating, less exercising. This past weekend was an exception. Hubs planned a weekend getaway, but #2 couldn't get off work. I didn't feel comfortable leaving our 16-year old home alone, so it was just the two of us, while Hubs took the youngest three. While I was home alone (as #2 was rarely around) I got in quite a bit of activity, and kept the calories in check. Thus ... the best stats I've had in quite a while (if ever?) NUMBERS: Average intake was 1707, average daily burn was 3061. A deficit of -7628. According to the numbers, that should equate to a two pound loss for the week. My actual numbers were a one pound loss for my official Friday weigh-in, but a -2.5 change in my weekly average. I'll take it.

It wasn't just the weekend that was good, but it was nice to have that to jump start the week. I STILL had a gain of a couple pounds there on Monday morning, which was frustrating, as I'd had deficits Fri/Sat/Sun. In fact, I had a deficit every single day (which hasn't happened in forever). I was just able to control calories this week. I'll admit, a little was the "depression diet" continuing on. Not that I haven't been hungry ... but I haven't been eating as much. Treats are still a problem. Candy Corn is a problem. I'm a bit of an all-or-nothing girl with it. I can't just have one handful ... if I have one, I have several. So even with the lower intake, it hasn't been much good-for-me food.

Just a quick week recap ... I didn't really get out Fri-Sun. #2 and I were sharing a car, and he had it most of the time (home gym comes in handy!) Mon-Thurs I got in my daily Zumba, hour of elliptical and reading/riding on the stationary bike. I did weights, and jogged the track on Tuesday during #5's basketball practice (a 32k day for me! Whew). Hubs had three derbies this week, that kept him and #3 very busy. (More detail in my Day to Day Doings).

Pictures from the Week

Hubs and the three little boys. Enjoying the sun in St. George.

#2 - roses for his girlfriend

Cute Kitty Cuddling

I don't know if my lower calorie intake is sustainable. I know I still need to swap out the treats for more healthy fare too. We'll see if I can pull off another "good" weekend with the family around!

Tuesday, October 6, 2015

Recent Reads - Three Trilogies

It's been a bit since I did a RECENT READS post ... but I have been reading. A LOT! I've been hitting the stationary bike for 30min almost every day (where I read while I ride), and then I do get in a bit of reading before bed (or at night when I can't sleep, which has been happening a little too much of late). But I have been getting through the books! I thought I'd post today about three post-apocalyptic trilogies I've read recently.

I actually read book 1, Ashfall, quite a while ago (in 2012 according to my GoodReads list). In it, a super volcano erupts, and the ash effectively blocks out the sun, causing an endless winter. This is a story of survival. The main characters are a little too competent (I'd sure want Darla by my side in an apocalypse) but it was an exciting and interesting read. I'm not sure why I didn't feel compelled to continue as book 1 ended, but I finally put the two sequels on hold at my library and finished up the series and quite enjoyed it. It is quite violent and dark, and there is a little sexual content (although nothing too graphic). 

I picked up "The In-Betweener" as a free Kindle download, and noticed the entire series was part of the Kindle Unlimited Library (I don't pay for Kindle Unlimited, but I do get one free borrowed book a month with my Prime membership). Sometimes "you get what you pay for" on these free offerings, but this series was a very pleasant surprise. It is a zombie world (although I don't know that they ever use that word), but this is the first series that actually explained how it came about (and I'm no brain surgeon, but it seemed plausible). I love the consistency of the covers ... although the POV shifts from Emily to Veronica, from the first book to the final two (yet the cover showcases the same girl). There are a lot of time shifts in the books too (present day to flashbacks) but they are all clearly labeled in the chapter headings. I really enjoyed this series, and ended up buying one of the books (and reading the final on Prime) so I could read them back to back.

I picked up this series from my local library, and was happy to see the trilogy was complete before I even started the first book. I really liked book 1 "The Testing" as it set up the world and the characters. It definitely had a Hunger Games/Divergent feel to it, but was it's own story. I was ready to move onto book 2 as soon as I finished the first ... but I did get bogged down a bit in books 2 and 3. I got a little tired of the "is this another test?" mentality, but overall, a good series.

So if you are looking for some post-apocalyptic survival stories ... 
I enjoyed these three trilogies!
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