Monday, March 27, 2017

Weekly Review #191

I had high hopes for this week. I tried so hard. Thursday when the scale said 180.2 I thought maybe, just maybe, I could drop a bit more and get out of these awful 180s. I moved up my Fitbit friend list, taking the top two spots (as I have two trackers, two accounts). But alas ... the weekend. Eating and exercise were off. Intake was over burn both Saturday and Sunday and the scale jumped back up. When all my other numbers were good, I really hoped the scale would show it too :(

NUMBERS: Official weigh-in showed a gain. .3. At least there was a loss on the average (-2.26 to 181.14). Average intake was 1914. Average daily burn was 2834. I had a deficit for the week. -4583!
Total steps were way up. Average steps 20,671. Exercise miles came in at 93.77. Cardio minutes were 918/849/890. ACTIVITIES: I got my hour of elliptical in all seven days this week (I'm changing my goal to seven days instead of five so that all days will be reflected ... I THOUGHT it would show 7 out of 5 days, but I guess not). Four hours of Zumba, three classes and an hour on my own. I hit the bike four times, and four times on the treadmill too. Three sessions with weights. 

Life ala Life Cycle
Here's a look at the day to day ...

  • Monday (0320): Active day with 90minElliptical, 30minZumba (on my own), a session on the bike, a mile jog and a weights workout. Also kept calories in check. 24881 steps. 3140 burn. 1200 intake.
  • Tuesday (0321): Got in my hour of elliptical, Zumba with Marian, bike and a two mile treadmill walk.  Eating under control. 27331 steps. 3036 burn. 1800 intake.
  • Wednesday (0322): Similar to Monday, but only an hour elliptical, and two miles on the treadmill. Zumba, bike and weights ... calories in check. 23632 Steps. 3042 burn. 1500 intake.
  • Thursday (0323): Went over my 2000 on calories, but that's still under burn. Hour of elliptical, Zumba with MountainView, Bike and a one mile treadmill walk. Rainy day! 22742 steps. 2936 burn. 2100 intake.
  • Friday (0324): Elementary was still in, but the older kids were out of school. I was able to hit a Zumba class with MZL. Also got in my hour of elliptical and did weights. Out to dinner with friends in the evening. I tried to input my evening meal early to help with calorie control.  21234 steps. 2942 burn. 1900 intake. 
  • Saturday (0325): Spring basketball started up, a couple games for #5. Rainy day again! Got in my hour of elliptical, but eating went over. 13463 steps. 2451 burn. 2800 intake. 
  • Sunday (0326): Slow Sunday, but still got in three 20min sessions on the elliptical. Family was watching March Madness in the evening. 11410 steps. 2289 burn. 2400 intake.
Five Featured Photos ...

A taste test ... girl scout Samoas vs Keebler Coconut Dreams and the generic Great Value version. Seriously, the all tasted the same, although the official GS cookie had the edge ascetically.

 Friday night dinner with Friends

The boys went to see Power Rangers. Hubs and I elected for a DVD at home.

Blurry picture ... but that cement seat was so cold!
I end up standing with my video camera most of the game anyway.

Sunday March Madness ... my cutie and his kitty.

I'll try not to give and and get discouraged ... and see if I can be good over a weekend too!

Saturday, March 25, 2017

Newspapers and Magazines

While I've completely converted to digital when it comes to books ... I still like physical, paper copies when I'm reading newspapers and magazines.I'll read the occasional article online, but just enjoy sitting at the table and flipping the pages of the paper, reading the news of the day, laughing at the comics and scanning the ads for deals.

But ... it's the end of an era.
I cancelled my subscription to my local newspaper.

I know, in this day and age we are supposed to support our local paper. There were three factors that came into play to cause me to cancel ...
  • I often wasn't reading. Sometimes the rolled up newspaper would sit for a few days just inside the front door, and then go directly into the recycling. Even the papers I did "read" it was usually just a quick skim of some sections.
  • News bias and negativity. Last year's elections have impacted everything. "Fake News" is now an everyday phrase. I don't have any extreme issues with our local paper. There was an obvious anti-Trump bias, but I could see the occasional attempt to show the other side as well. But just overall with ALL news now, I question every story and wonder about the "other side" of the issue. While I want to stay informed, it's exhausting to constantly question everything, and so much of the news is sad and bad and ... (I'd given up on watching TV news ages ago). 
  • Payment problems. Every time I would get a bill, it would frustrate me. Instead of offering a monthly rate, only 12, 26, or 52 week options were available. That just messes up my monthly finances! And there was no way to pay online! I have to write a check, or write down credit card information and find a stamp and mail it? More than the money itself, it's the inconvenience! If my paper had offered an easy online monthly payment, I probably would have continued.
It's just been a week or so without the newspaper. I must admit I miss it a little. I've turned back to magazines when I need something to flip through as I'm sitting in the kitchen.  A while back (2013) I did a blog post called Mucho Magazines where I discussed all the health/fitness ones I subscribed to. While I allowed those subscriptions to lapse long ago ... I still have a backlog! Without my newspaper, maybe I'll get through these magazines. Finally.

We have a few current magazine subscriptions. Nothing I paid out of pocket for, but I received a notice connected to an old credit card where we would convert some unused frequent flyer miles (Hubs DOES like frequent flyer miles but had switched cards/programs) for magazine subscriptions. After consulting with the Mr. that he wouldn't make use of those miles himself, I went ahead and ordered some subscriptions ...

Now I KNOW Time has some of the same issues I mentioned about (obvious bias/sad stories ... still sometimes doesn't get read) but without the payment problems, I figured I'd give it a go. Sports Illustrated for the boys to look through (although I may have confiscated the swimsuit issue) and People Magazine. When I'd be in waiting rooms I'd often flip through it, although I'd never subscribed myself.  When these pre-paid subscriptions run out, I won't be renewing.

Then I'll just have to see if I can switch to online for articles ... or just read my novels!

Wednesday, March 22, 2017

Jai Ho x 2

It's Workout Wednesday ...time for another Choreography Clash!
Did you see the movie Slumdog Millionaire? At the end, as the credits are running, the cast is dancing to a number poppified by the Pussycat Dolls. Jai Ho. I liked it then, and I liked it when we danced to it in one of my Zumba classes (not the same choreography as the movie) ... and even again, when another class did a completely different version! Usually I struggle a bit with the same song, different steps ... but I guess these two are different enough that my brain can handle it. 

This is first one I did (Marian's Class). Our class choreography is pretty much the same. It might not look it, but this is quite the arm workout. Even more so that some of the "arm workout" only songs! This does have a bit of that Indian flair to some of the moves.

Here ... they chat a bit at the start so you can just skip straight to the song starting at 1:14. My MZL class does this version. Instead of the flowing moves, this has core work, squats and punches and a little balancing section.

I really like both of these versions and have them both pretty solidly in my head (meaning I could probably do them even without an instructor showing me the moves). In a couple other classes (Debbie and Melanie) I've seen other versions too ... they are out there. I think I'll stick with these two though.

Tuesday, March 21, 2017

TV Tuesday - Awake

I keep a list on Netflix of shows that have caught my eye. As I finish one series, I skim my list and try out another. I'd had "Awake" on my list, even though I really didn't know what it was about (just that it had been on mainstream TV). I gave it a try and was immediately hooked. There is only one season ... 13 episodes. The series wrapped up with a conclusion rather than a cliffhanger. It didn't answer everything, but I was happy with it. 

Here's the trailer ...

A portion of this promo ran every episode as the intro. Usually I HATE introductions to series (just give me the title and start the show!) but for some reason this one didn't bother me. I had JUST seen Jason Issacs (who is the lead here) in The OA. He's much more likeable here. It was so interesting how they had the parallel worlds (I'd really enjoyed the movie "Sliding Doors" which has a similar theme, except that those worlds were completely separate, here Britton is consciously experiencing both realities). My oldest son is interesting in crime/police work and psychology, so I've recommended this series as one I think he would enjoy. 

I was impressed with how the producers had the slight red and green tint to the different worlds/realities. Just as Britton wears a red/green rubber band on his wrist to help him keep his realities straight, the tint helps the viewers (although both Britton and I got things confused a bit at times). 

I'm still not absolutely sure what I think of the ending ... the last couple episodes were weird. There have been some online articles discussing it too (Awake Finale Questions Answered). I really don't know where it would have gone, if there had been a season 2. While so many shows never make it into a second season, I'm glad they still make it onto Netflix. I don't catch things as they air ... I prefer to wait until I can stream and entire season. Get absolutely involved in ONE world as I watch one show. Here though ... I guess it was two worlds!

Monday, March 20, 2017

Weekly Review #190

Down from last week, but absolutely unhappy in the 180s. The first half of the week wasn't good, with some uber overeating and just half-hearted exercise. For the end of the week I snapped out of it and kept calories in control, even over the weekend. I'm attempting a new medication, and maybe (even just placebo effect) it's introduction can be enough to make me try a little harder on the food and fitness and see if I can't shift the scale.

NUMBERS: Official weigh-in down 1.4, but average was up 1.26 (183.4). Average intake was 2286, Average burn 2665. Crunching the numbers, over by 389 for the week. Total steps 114,236. Average daily steps 16319. Logged exercise miles 55.11.  Cardio minutes (depending on who is tracking) 550/595/534. Working out with Weights for 85 minutes. ACTIVITY: Got in my hour of elliptical six days. Two Zumba classes. One time on the bike. Two weight workouts.

Here's the Day by Day ...

  • Monday (0313): Hubs and the two boys made it home from their weekend trip. In the evening, Hubs and three boys went to a Jazz game. I got in my hour of elliptical, bike and weights. Over on calories in though. 16711 steps. 2697 burn. 2700 intake. 
  • Tuesday (0314): Got in my hour of elliptical and Zumba with Marian. Nice weather, should have walked! Uber over ... PB M&M eggs were the main culprit. Dominos for dinner (Pi day). 20150 steps. 2854 burn. 3200 intake. 
  • Wednesday (0315): Dragging today, just my hour of elliptical. Evening spent at the annual end of season awards dinner for the boy's basketball. 11434 steps. 2333 burn. 2900 intake. 
  • Thursday (0316): Good day today, stayed active and busy. A little over an hour of elliptical and Zumba with MountainView. Grabbed Dominos again and met my folks and MIL at the elementary school for Grandparent's Day (the pizza was for them). Early out at the elementary, then back again for PT Conferences. Kept calories in check today, even with making homemade oreos after dinner. 22402 steps. 3033 burn. 1700 intake.
  • Friday (0317): Dragging again! Just my hour of elliptical. #5 was out of school and had a friend over. #1 decided to clean out his closet, which resulted in me spending several hours going through closets and clothes as well. 16205 steps. 2746 burn. 1800 intake. 
  • Saturday (0318): Just one session on the elliptical, but did do WEIGHTS. Also some shopping steps and lawn mow. Had the folks over in the evening for Hub's smoked steaks.  13288 steps. 2458 burn. 1900 intake. 
  • Sunday (0319): Didn't take a rest day and got in my hour of elliptical. Still kept calories in check. 14046 steps. 2533 burn. 1900 intake. 
Five Featured Photos ...

 Monday night Jazz game for Hubs and a few of the boys. 

Basketball Awards Dinner ... Seven Silly Seniors (mine is #2)

Dressed for Dinner (Wed) ... my new shorter hair-do.

Grandparents Day at the elementary. #5 and Grandparents!

Boxes and Bags of Clothing to Go.

Thursday, March 16, 2017

Recent Reads - Watersong Quartet

I try to do a monthly Recent Reads post ... often combining several series (while attempting to stick with a theme) and still I'm reading many more books than I end up reviewing here. I'm up to date on my GoodReads reviews/rating though. I do that for me, but hope it might help others too.

A recent series I read was the Watersong Quartet. I'd put this off a bit, after experiencing the author's Hollowland (Zombie) book. It didn't click with me. This series was better, I enjoyed it, but still just in the 3/4 star range for me.

I've always loved the story of The Little Mermaid ... these are NOT those kind of mermaids. These are sirens. Their song can kill. They can also transform into birds. There was quite a bit of mythological background here with the siren theme. There are three girls ... and they need a fourth.

  • Book 1 (Wake) introduces all the characters. The sirens ... Penn, Lexi, and Thea. The sisters ... Gemma and Harper. Their love interests ... Alex and Daniel. It sets up the story, the background of the sirens and Gemma's transformation. The story does wrap up, while staying open ended for the next installment.
  • Book 2 (Lullaby) starts off pretty much where the first left off. We have two separate stories as Gemma is off with the girls and Harper, Alex and Daniel are still at home.
  • Book 3 (Tidal) has all the characters reunited again. Here there were flashbacks to Thea's early memories which explained some details, but also made this book feel a bit jumpy.
  • Book 4 (Elegy) was quite long (500+ pages) but did wrap everything up. 
I experienced the first two books in audio format. I liked the narrator, she had distinct voices for the different people. Sing song voices for the sirens. As I read the last two installments myself (my library didn't have them in audio), I'd still "hear" those voices in my head.   Looking back on the series, it felt a little more like one long story than four distinct books. 

From a parental perspective ... the first book was completely clean as I recall. In the second book, an f-bomb was dropped (timing, I was in the car with  my 11-year old when the autoplay started and oops! There hadn't been any proFanity to that point!) The language increased in the third and fourth books, as did the violence and sexual content.   

I've read a couple other "siren" books, and some "mermaid" books ... I'll need to gather up my reviews/ratings and do another book review featuring these other sea stories.

Wednesday, March 15, 2017

Girl Scout Cookies

Time for another edition of ... "What We're Eating" Wednesday 

It's THAT time of year. 
Girl Scout cookie time! 

We never had anyone come knock on our door this year, but a couple friends/neighbors posted on Facebook that their daughters were selling. Tagalongs are a favorite for me and the three oldest boys. I also love the Samoas and like the Thin Mints, but I've found acceptable substitutions (Keebler and Great Value brand) so they aren't quite as "once a year" as the Tagalongs. I ordered FIVE boxes of those, and one each of the other two. Perhaps I should have tried the Smores ones ... I've heard good things.

Of the five boxes of Tagalongs, two were gone almost instantly (thus the picture up top). I gave one box each to each of the three older boys to keep or eat on their own. I'm fairly certain they are gone too (I may have glanced in their rooms in a moment of craving ...). 

Mmmm ... Tagalongs!

My two littles don't like peanut butter (#5 is allergic). They are also unimpressed with the Samoas and Thin Mints ... but they like the plain, shortbread Trefoils. I bought one box of Smores ... I don't know that anyone has tried them yet. I've heard no feedback.

There are copycat cookies out there too. The other day, I picked up the Keebler Coconut Dreams and the generic Great Value (Walmart) ones and we had a taste test, comparing them to the official GS Samoas. Truthfully ... couldn't tell/taste much of a difference. Samoas had the edge aesthetically.

There is a cookie close to the Tagalongs ... Great Value Peanut Butter Filled Fudge cookies. But the cookie is chocolate, whereas the true Tagalong cookie is white. There is something about the Tagalongs that just keep me coming back. Dangerous. I ended up ordering three more boxes. I hit them ... or thought I did. I didn't end up getting any, but I DID have this conversation with #2 ...

Me: I can't believe you ate all my Tagalongs! Three boxes! I had them hidden!
#2: Not very well (evil laugh) ... and I think you can believe it!

Do you buy and eat Girl Scout Cookies?
Which ones are your favorites?

... and here's a funny I found on Facebook.

Tuesday, March 14, 2017

Netflix Originals - Supernatural Shows

 Time for TV Tuesday
It was last September when Hubs and I binged on the Netflix Original Stranger Things. Although I didn't get any comments on my blog post, when I mentioned it on Facebook, quite a few friends and family jumped on the thread to say that they had loved the show. I'm not sure what turned my boys onto the series, but they have just started watching it ... as brothers. An episode each night. All five boys together.

Stranger Things may have been the "original" Netflix Original when it comes to supernatural shows, but its success and spawned several others. In the last little bit, I've watched three of these paranormal, sci-fi series while I've worked out.

Glitch was the first one I found after Stranger Things. Now, this wasn't created by Netflix, but originally aired on Australia (but was still listed under Netflix Originals). I love Australian accents! The setting was in Australia and all the actors were unknown to me. Sometimes I really like that. Completely fresh faces, no recalling other shows I've seen actors in. The premise ... several people who have died (some recently, some ages ago) are somehow BACK. They can't seem to leave the little town they are in. The local sheriff and doctor are trying to keep things under wraps until they can figure everything out, but there is an evil coming after those who have returned. There are other complications that really made the story compelling. I'm trying to recall the content from a parental perspective ... it is rated TVMA. I don't remember a lot of language. There was some nudity, although nothing gratuitous (as the returned literally dug themselves out of the ground sans clothing).  If there is a second season ... I'll be tuning in.  

Next up on Netflix? Travelers. Other than Eric McCormack (from the Will and Grace sitcom) almost all the other actors were new to me (this was created in Canada although it is set here in the US). They really grew on me too. I got quite attached to the characters and their quest ... this ended abruptly though. Cliffhanger. I hope there are more episodes to come.

As the title indicates ... there is traveling. Time travel. It reminded me a little of Continuum and 12 Monkeys (TV Tuesday Time Travel) in that a distant future is sending people back in time to try and change things, prevent what the future has become. This was an interesting twist, as technology has afforded the future to know when people have died ... they then send back souls to take over that body moments before the death. The "death" is prevented and the identity from the future takes over. There are multiple teams here in our time, each with five members. The one in charge, the muscle, the techie, the doctor and the historian (who has memorized all the dates/information from the era). Each team has different missions. Will they be able to change the future? If they are successful ... will that mean that they cease to exist? Anything dealing with time travel is always mind bending. I'm  looking forward to a second season. Parental Perspective ... rated TV-MA. This did have quite a bit of language.

After the resounding success of Stranger Things, there was talk that "The OA" was the next "Stranger Things". Whereas StrangerThings is rated TV-14, The OA is TV-MA for language and a couple sex scenes.

The first preview I saw didn't make it seem as supernatural as it turned out to be. It focused on a girl being found, seven years after she disappeared. Then she was blind ... now she is not.  Now that sounds like an interesting premise, but the show goes so far beyond that.

Prairie connects with five outcasts and the episodes are her telling them her story. Of her youth, her search, her abduction and her years in captivity. I really requires some suspension of disbelief, but I, as her audience in the show, was quite captivated. I'd find myself anxious to exercise to see what would happen next. 

I've read a few discussions about the show (which you should not read until you complete the series) and some love the ending while it frustrated others. It really grabbed me personally. I had to go back and rewatch portions of the final episode. Like Stranger Things ... I'm not really sure where a second season would go. While others are super excited about a second season ... it makes me nervous. I'm wondering if this and Stranger Things would be better left as a one season wonder.

There was a ton of talk about Winona Ryder's facial expressions during the SAG awards. Have you seen the video with the pizza imposed upon it? Hilarious! As my boys were rewatching part of an episode (as due to the "brother oath" no one is allowed to move onto the next episode until they are all together) and they mentioned that "Will's Mom" looked familiar but they couldn't place where they had seen her. I told them she was the one who kissed Rachel on Friends. Their faces when they put that together! Shock! (Ryder hasn't aged quite as well as Aniston, and especially in this production, she isn't shown in the best light ... of course even out of character, she's appearing very odd!)

While I think Stranger Things was the first supernatural Netflix Original to cause a big stir (Netflix Originals "House of Cards" and "Orange is the New Black" are more realistic dramas), it wasn't the first. I remember Sense8 hitting the scene back in 2015. There has been talk of a second season ... I did watch it (VERY TV-MA ... I won't be letting the kids watch that one). There was one other one I tried ... called "The 3%" ... the premise sounded right up my alley. Like Glitch and Travelers, it was originally produced outside of the United States, this time in Brazil. So unlike the former two, there was a language issue. Filmed originally in Portuguese, it had been dubbed into English ... but my brain could not accept the words and lips not lining up. Also, the captions and the spoken words didn't match. Like they had been translated separately. Technically, they would mean the same things, but the words spoken and coming across in the subtitles didn't match most of the time. The actors would say "that is really big" and the captions would read "wow, that's huge" ... even if I could have overcome these issues (perhaps watching it with the original Portuguese with subtitles) the acting and storyline were a little iffy. Something I'd probably enjoy as a book, but just wasn't cooperating on screen. 

Every time I finish a series ... I wonder, what do I watch next? Should I stick to the supernatural or switch to something a little more realistic (hospital, legal, police dramas ...). Still waiting for season 4 of Orphan Black to hit AmazonPrime.

Do you like supernatural shows?

Monday, March 13, 2017

Weekly Review #189

Blech. Highest weight in ... since before I lost the weight 12 years ago? I keep thinking "It can't go up anymore, can it?" I mean of COURSE it can, but back then when I hit that high (185), I wasn't exercising at all. I wasn't logging my food. While I'm not as active as I have been over the years, and my eating is atrocious (but I've never been able to get that under control so there's really no changes there) ... I HAVE still been exercising and tracking. According to the numbers, I really should have been maintaining ... and that's 20+ pounds ago. 

I'll admit. I'm quite discouraged. There was some obvious comfort food this weekend ... which of course doesn't help anything. I wish I could at least benefit from the depression diet rather than the "I want to eat everything" emotions.

NUMBERS: Up 1.9 pounds. Average up .94 (182.14). Average intake 2614. Average burn 2557. Yes, intake more than burn. Over by 3042 when crunching the numbers. Average steps 15249. 106,742 total steps for the week. 59.1 exercise miles. 560/528 cardio minutes. 60min weights.  ACTIVITY: I got in my hour of elliptical five days, two Zumba classes, two sessions on the bike, one time on the treadmill, and one workout with weights.

A look at my Life Cycle. 
I'm always a homebody, but even more so this week. No basketball to get me out of the house. #5 did have a tournament, but it was in Logan (2 hours away ... too far for me). I caught a little of it online, as one of the other moms streamed some on Facebook live. 

Basketball (or the lack of it) also affects driving time. Carpool time is also down, as #2 can bring #3 home from school now, and with the middle-school play finished up, one of the other moms has resumed her rotation in the school carpool. 

No "other" activities ... appointments or eating out or anything. Just some shopping to restock groceries. 

Here's a look at the day by day ...

  • Monday (0306): Bit of a draining day due to some basketball team drama and philosophical discussions. Made gingersnaps, but kept calories in check. Hour of elliptical and reading/riding on the bike. 17459 steps. 2693 burn. 1900 intake. 
  • Tuesday (0307):  Hour of elliptical and Zumba with Marian. Girl scout cookies delivered today ... mmm, Tagalongs! 18047 steps. 2681 burn. 2800 intake. 
  • Wednesday (0308): Same activity as Monday, hour of elliptical and a session on the bike. The guys had a dodge ball activity over at the church. #1 son had a 31+k day! 17430 steps. 3064 burn. 2200 intake. 
  • Thursday (0309): Hour of elliptical, Zumba with MountainView and a two mile walk on the treadmill. 24160 steps, 3064 burn, 2800 intake.
  • Friday (0310): #5 was out of school today. I got in my hour of elliptical and did weights. Made snickerdoodles. Hubs, #1 and #3 left on a weekend trip. 14334 steps. 2651 burn. 2200 intake.
  • Saturday (0311): Up early to get #5 off to his basketball tournament. Did get in 40min elliptical, but it was a pretty lazy day. Haircuts at home in the evening. Uber over on the eating (they guys bought travel treats then left the temptations!) 9497 steps. 2188 burn. 3200 intake.  
  • Sunday (0312): No exercise, rest day. 5815 steps. 1980 burn. 3200 intake (again!) :(

Five Featured Photos ...

 BOYS in my gym ... almost every day!

 A weekend getaway for these three. First time flying for #3.

Snapchat sons. Dog-gone cute!

Haircut housecall ... we didn't leave it like that!
He went from super shaggy to shorn!

Daylight Savings ... LOST and hour on Sunday.

Friday, March 10, 2017

Fitbit Followup and Funny Phrases

I'm a Fitbit Fan. At one point, I got the whole family on board (Fitbit Family, A Fitbit Family Update) and we'd have friendly competitions and see where we stood on steps compared to each other. Then ... my family fell off the Fitbit wagon (Abandoned Bits). Even my #4, who was completely obsessed and beating me for a while, gave his up. I was the only one left at home wearing my Fitbit.

While #1 son was on his mission to Mexico, he was really good at sending me his steps every week ... until about a year and half in. But I wondered ... when he was back at home, could wear an actual Fitbit (he was just using a cheap pedometer) and sync to a phone or computer ... would he want one? He did! He picked the ChargeHR (which #4 had been using up until recently) and immediately passed me up on steps. Not that hard to do, as I've been a bit of a wimp lately. Several in my extended family still have their Fitbits, and my brother noticed the new addition, especially as he took over the #1 spot on the family lists (I can't believe he only beat me by 10 steps! I should have taken 11 more!) The impressive stats up there at the start of this post? They belong to #1 son (this past Wednesday ... worked framing all day then played dodgeball and basketball in the evening. Look at that calorie burn estimate! Even if I match the steps, my calories can't compete ... BOYS!)

This week ... #4 decided to start wearing again! Yea! As the ChargeHR was taken, he opted for the Flex, previously purchased for #1 ages ago, then worn by #3 for quite a while.  Which leads me into a transition into our family's funny Fitbit phrases ...

Two of my brothers and #3 (back in August 2015).
Funny because they are flexing while wearing a Flex. 
Ha ha ..... I'm hilarous. 

I'm often reminding the boys to keep their Fitbits charged. It sounds funny when I say "Charge your Charge" ... and I can even tell #1 son "you could charge your Charge in your Charger" (his new car). 

When the boys are wearing their Fitbits, and I'm comparing steps and stats ... I need the most recent info from everyone. As the boys aren't quite as fanatical about their Fitbit feedback as I am (syncing after each exercise session, multiple times during the day) I'll often call out "hey, sync yourself" and they dutifully do. I am the mommy ... gotta do what the mommy says!

Hopefully #4 will inch up again on the family Fitbit list ... he was quite competitive for a while there. He's slipped some, as have I. We'll see what happens to #1's step count when he moves from his active framing job to a desk job (coming up in a few weeks). We'll see if I can at least break 100K each week. Once it was easy, but it's been a challenge lately. Maybe I can even try for my own 30k Day.

Wednesday, March 8, 2017

Cuties vs Halos

Time for another "What We're Eating Wednesday" Post ...
Clementine Clash!

In a friendly fruity competition ... Clementines beat regular oranges hands down. Okay ... not for juice. I know there IS clementine juice, but we have simply stuck with OJ for now. When it comes to easy peeling, serving size and yummy taste? Clementines win. At least in my opinion, and my family agrees.

But what about the different BRANDS of clementines? There are Cuties, and Halos, and other no-name or lesser known ones out there. I know brand names are important to some people. I'm a generic (cheap) gal myself, but Hubs, and thus the boys, tend to like certain brands. I'm thinking it will be a repeating blog post on the future. Blackham Brand Battles. In our family? Cuties win!

I remember first discovering Cuties several years ago. We simply had never purchased them before. That first bag was devoured! Through the years I tended to think the early (end of year, November/December) fruits were the best. Maybe it was just having them after the summer hiatus. 

When Cuties weren't carried, I have picked up the other brands. #3 son is very picky. He ONLY wants Cuties. He says he can tell the difference ... and often I think I can to! Unfortunately, it's not quite important enough for me to drive to a different store if the one I'm at doesn't carry Cuties.

These little guys for lunches are perfect for lunches on the go. Such an easy, portable treat. Even though they are so easy to peel, I usually prep them at home when packing lunches. They make my fingers smell all citrus-y.  I don't think the peels in the disposal create quite the same smell as oranges or lemons though. 

For one of my boys, I can throw the clementine pieces in with other assorted fruit. #3 son, Mr. Picky, has to have them separate in their own bag (being picky myself ... I think I actually agree with this, we really don't want our fruits and juices touching do we? Mixing flavors? Oh no!)

Mmmmm ... I just ate one while writing this post. It was a Halo though.

Tuesday, March 7, 2017

Weekly Review #188

Another week. It was the state playoffs for 5A basketball this week. Because the games were being streamed, and they were a bit further away, I watched on my Ipad rather than going in person (because I'm a homebody like that). There were three games (Mon/Wed/Fri) ... I worked out while I watched (helped burn off some of my anxious energy). Activity was up, travel time was down.

I didn't do any grocery shopping this week at all. 
Hubs stopped at the store!

NUMBERS: Weight down a bit. -1.1 to be exact. Average down a smidge (-.19 to 181.20). Average intake was 2314. Average burn was 2616. Crunching the numbers ... over by 111. Average steps 16,959. I did weights this week ... about 50min. Cardio minutes 800/647 and 115.71 exercise miles (any time on the stationary bike and that goes up a lot). FITNESS: Got in my hour of elliptical five times this week, Zumba class twice, hit the bike four times, a couple long sessions! Treadmill once and weights once (with a little on another day, but it wasn't a full session). 

Best day Friday? Usually that's a bad day for me. I was keeping myself occupied exercising while watching the semi-finals. One game while walking the treadmill, the other on the bike. I also got in my hour of elliptical in the morning that day, and did weights. I did manage to move up my Fitbit friend list a bit ... more on my One than my ChargeHR. Always a discrepancy between those two. If you look at a couple of the stats above (miles/active minutes) you may notice large differences there too. It's the bike (and there was a lot of bike this week). Bike miles don't transition into steps well, and don't come across the Fitbit as active minutes (at least not after I adjust its erroneous readings. Trying to be Truthful).

Here's a look at the day by day ...
  • Monday (0227): I got in my hour of elliptical early. Hit the bike for some reading and riding and did a walk on the treadmill. In the evening, the State 5A Boys Basketball playoffs were starting. Hubs and some of the boys went to the U to watch the game, but it was being streamed, so I watched at home. The second half I watched while biking, a good way to expend my excess anxious energy. 20640 steps. 2727 burn. 2300 intake. 
  • Tuesday (0228): Hour of elliptical, Zumba with Marian and a session on the bike. Chicken pillows for dinner. 21143 steps. 2949 burn. 1800 intake. 
  • Wednesday (0301): Got in my hour of elliptical. In the evening there was another streaming game, and I watched almost all of it on the bike (55min/15miles) but had to go grab #5 from school while attempting to listen to the audio. They won again! 15337 steps. 2477 burn. 2100 intake. 
  • Thursday (0302): Zumba with Mountain View and my hour of elliptical. Hubs had a derby and I made Snickerdoodles. 20161 steps. 2825 burn. 2300 intake. 
  • Friday (0303): I usually don't get in much activity on Fridays ... but today I got up and did my hour of elliptical early. After getting the kids off, I did weights. I watched the first semi-final game while walking on the treadmill, then watched our boys in the second semi-final while on the bike. 100minutes! Well, 99, the bike only has double digits and turned off! The boys didn't get the win though, so that ends #2's high school basketball career.  25657 steps. 2971 burn. 3200 intake (there might have been some nervous eating today). 
  • Saturday (0304): I got in a couple 20min sessions on the elliptical. Hubs hosted a pinewood derby workshop. Even though our boys were out, we watched the championship game ... well, #2 didn't, as it was prom and they went on their day date. Instead of giving it my full attention on the bike or treadmill, I stayed in the kitchen and watched while making lasagna. 10442 steps. 2296 burn. 1500 intake. 
  • Sunday (0305): Slow Sunday, day of rest. We had our Sunday Circles breakfast, then hosted a smoke fest for the extended family in the evening. 5336 steps. 2065 burn. 2800 intake. 

 Monday's game ...

Wednesday's game ...

Pinewood Derby Workshop

 Prom Pictures

Smoked Meat Anyone? Yummy!
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