Wednesday, October 30, 2013

Weight Loss Wednesday!

I'm sorry for the lack of photos - I'm having major issues with iPhoto.

My weight has always flip-flopped back and forth.
I blew up somewhere around second grade, but I've always been a little...plump.
When I was about 15-16, I lost  a LOT of weight - from about 220 to 152, so 68 pounds. 
From a size 20/22 to a 10/12. (HOW do I remember this?!)
Then I put on about 25 pounds after graduating in 2002, moved to England in2 005  & got married.
Let's just say, I left England and went back 3 months later  40 pounds heavier.
Once again, I lost it all (back down t o 152 - there's that magic number again) for a BIG weight loss.
Got pregnant, had a baby, miscarried twice, had another baby, and.....

You get the picture.

I had my bone marrow transplant in July, and ever since, I have been dropping weight.
At first it literally melted off. Once again, my highest was 220. 
(What IS it with these SAME numbers?!)
I dropped down to about 198 by my 6 week checkup around the first of September - 22 lbs. gone.
Now it's the end of October, and as of this morning, I've lost 17 more pounds. 181 pounds - I cannot TELL you the last time I was in the 180's! Probably while I was expecting Sara.

Food has never been a "vice" for me. I've heard other people say that lots of times, and I don't really understand because I didn't feel that way. I just ate because....I was bored, mostly. And I ate the WRONG things. That's even more important. Post transplant, I've pretty much became a vegetarian. I rarely eat meat, and that's okay with me. Not because I have any particular convictions about it, but because I can't handle it. It smells and tastes disgusting. Especially chicken. I can do it in very minimal amounts, but not often. I prefer fruits & vegetables, and pastas occasionally. I truly believe this is why my weight has just fell off. It's not because I'm doing anything spectacular, for sure!
(Unless you count receiving a bone marrow transplant spectacular....and, you know what? I kinda do.)
I have become a healthier person.

 However, I have noticed the weight loss slowing down. I still have about 40 pounds left that I want to shed, so I'm about to step up my game. Two weeks ago, I started walking to the bus stop to get the neighborhood kids off the bus int the afternoons. Not much, right? But when it painted me to take 10 steps before, it's no small feat to walk about quarter of a mile. My strength is still coming back.

SO - my goals for this week?

-  walk at least 30 minutes per day
- ride the (real) bike for 30 minutes outside with the kids
- work on toning my core area 15 minutes a day
- no snacks after supper for 7 days

Yes, I know these goals are not much. They may seem very easy to you. But for me, this is definitely a challenge. Not because I'm hugely out of shape, but because of that I've been through this year. It'll be interesting to see what next weeks weigh-in will look like - I'm pretty excited!

Tuesday, October 29, 2013

What's For Dinner & Meal Plan Monday 10.27-11.2

Hey ya'll! I meant for this to go up yesterday, BUT I was having major computer issues.
Actually, I still am. Sorry for no pictures - can't sync them from my phone to the computer. :/

I'm just going to go on and say right now that I pretty much had an epic fail at taking pictures of my food. Things get SO hectic with trying to get everybody's plates made or food on the table, getting the dogs outside so we can eat peacefully, and generally meeting the needs of three very hungry, sometimes cranky, always impatient-when-starving people without passing out from exhaustion.
Okay, so maaaybe that's an exaggeration....but you get the picture.

The one picture I got was the night I made pork chops with onions and carrots, seasoned & baked, roasted corn on the cob & italian green beans.  Man, I'm getting hungry!
Maybe I will do better this week. :)

Next up is our meal plan for this coming week, October 27 until November 2. 

Monday: pasta primavera, garlic bread, and leftover beans & weenies (yes, for real - don't judge!)
Tuesday: baked ham & swiss sandwiches, cheese puffs (again - don't judge!)
Wednesday: vegetable soup, cornbread, strawberry cake with cream cheese icing - it's Daddy's birthday!
Thursday: leftovers or grabbing something out 
Friday: bbq chicken, corn, brown rice
Saturday & Sunday we will be out of town.

Nothing fancy or spectacular this week. It's the end of the pay period so we're eating from the pantry and clearing out for a HUGE grocery shop coming up. I am dreading it. I hate grocery shopping!

I hope ya'll have a wonderful Tuesday!

Thursday, October 24, 2013

Instagram Picture Dump

I take a lot of pictures. Instagram is addicting.
Do you see where we're going here?

Because I don't want to forget them, here is an Instagram picture dump.
July until present - either I've taken them or I was tagged in them.
I may need a 12-step program, because these are just a FEW!

 I'm not sure if I've even shared a picture of myself lately. This is me, bald head & all!

The difference an hour makes! When she first woke up & when she was leaving for school.

Silly, sweet Junebug!

Yesterday morning, ready to leave for school. I LOVE this handmade boutique outfit - $.50 yar dsale find - it's the tunic/bloomers set. I couldn't believe it!

Last night she brought home her FIRST school library book!

My little sissy & I on our way to Atlanta for a doctors appointment. :)

Pumpkins all decorated for Halloween...spoooky!

These next few pictures are all from when the girls stayed with my family in Mississippi during my bone marrow transplant. These are not even a tenth of the pictures April took. She honestly probably took 5-15 pictures per day and posted them online or texted them to me so I could see them. She will never know how much I appreciate that. Thank you, April!

June LOVED Miss Gracelyn, "the baby". LOL!

Three beatiful girls. 

 April's dad lives behind them and he has a small farm. 
The girls loved going out to check for the eggs.

Well, hot dog! We found one!

Three sweet girls all ready for church!

I hope ya'll have a wonderful Thursday! There isn't much going on around these parts today - staying home to clean and Sara cheers at her last football game tonight. Sounds like a perfect day to me!

Wednesday, October 23, 2013

What I'm Loving Wednesday

Well hey ya'll! Welcome back to Sweet Tea & Sunshine!
Today is What I'm Loving Wednesday.
If you're not familiar with it, What I'm Loving Wednesday is basically just an opportunity for bloggers to share what their current loves are. Sometimes it's beauty related, fashion related, but it can also be home related - a decoration, food, cleaning product, etc. 
It can also be someone or something that you're just appreciating more lately.

I rediscovered this in my stash and have been loving it lately.
When I first got it, I hated it. NOTHING could beat my Oil of Olay moisturizer (which I still do love). I don't know if the product just needed to sit a while or not, but now it's my night moisturizer and it's amazing. I don't have problematic skin, just very dry skin, and it works wonders. Seriously. 
And it's like $7 at Wal-Mart. Can't beat that with a stick!

I picked up this Dead Sea Spa eye cream at Marshalls about a month ago & have been using it ever since. It's really good. I've heard of the brand before but it's my first time using the product. I don't use it in the morning because I feel it's a bit too heavy, but it's perfect paired with the Neutrogena face moisturizer at night. I have honestly noticed a difference - and like I siad, I have dry skin with extremely dry undereyes, so that's saying something! I believe it was $5, but retailed for more.
Can I just say I LOOOOVE Marshalls?!

Sticking with beauty products, I've been a fan of this Mint Julep face mask for years.
I use it once a week. It hardens quickly, washes off easily, and leaves my skin feeling refreshed.

That's all, folks.What I've been loving over the past few weeks! Hope you enjoyed!

Tuesday, October 22, 2013

It's Fall, Ya'll!

I fiiiinally got my fall decorations out of the garage & put up inside.
Hold up. Let me rephrase that - Michael got them out for me. :)
I've gott everything all decorated (including new paint for the front door!) so I thought I'd share!
I love seeing other people decorate their houses for whatever season it is.

I just HAVE to say that my dogs have already scratched the stupid door
...and it just got painted yesterday.
And yes, there is STILL tape aorund the glass because I've got to touch up the white paint.
But let's keep it real, folks - if I wait to do that before I show ya'll, it'll be the new year. :/

When you first walk in our front door, to the left I have a little shelf. I had two leftover pumpkinst hat wouldn't fit anywhere else so I threw them up there.

That sign hanging from the bottom was given to us by our favorite NICU nurse, Carrie.
She gave it to us as we were leaving the NICU, headed home with our miracle.
It says, "And they lived happily ever after."
There's been a few mudholes and ditches along the way...
...but we're in our "happily ever after" now.

In our living room, we have a dark walnut bookcase.
 The area is not a large one, so I keep things to a minimum. 
Less stuff = more room to breathe. :)
The votive holders are Party Lite, circa 2004. They are a golden brown color & I LOVE them.
The little house was a wedding gift from my aunt and uncle.
It's probably my most favorite thing in our home right now!
The little white urn was a Goodwill find that I spray painted white.
I loooove me some spray paint!
I just stuck a leftover sunflower in the top.

Not a great picture, but here's a full picture oft he bookcase. 
One of my next projects is painting it white & applying pretty paper to the back of it.
Stars on the top are from Ross, circa 2010.
Random hurricane glass with old balls found in the garage - no idea where I got them from.
Candle holder from Dollar General, earlier this year.

Here's the bakers rack in my dining room.
Top urn (??) is from Hobby Lobby, 2011.
Canvas art I bought on in 2006 - first thing I bought for our house after marriage!
Green votive holder from Ross this year.
Rooster from Ross, I think 2011.

This ist he only "faii-ish" thing I have in the kitchen
....and I leave it out all year round!

Well, there you go - my house decorated for fall!
I  don't go all out like some people, but I'm still building my stash. 
I like to buy things on clearance after the holiday is over.
Next year my goal is to have some hay bales to decorate outside with!

Monday, October 21, 2013

What's For Dinner 10/7-13 & Meal Plan Monday!

I hope ya'll have been having a great time!
Last week was busy for us. We had a house full of sickies, and now mama has caught the crud.
I'm not too worried - I have an appointment this week with a respiratory therapist for my monthly breathing treatment, so I will just have him double check me. I don't feel too bad. :)

A while back I said I was thinking about starting to share our weekly meal plans and what we had for dinner. We are a family of 4, enlisted military, with a mother who desires to feed her family healthy food but has a tight budget. We are still trying to get out of CC debt (almost there, praise the Lord!) and therefore do not have tons of money to spend on food. We wouldn't anyway. It's not necessary.

Well anyway, I pretty much failed at taking nightly pictures of my food. I'm just going to have to get in the swing of things. :) But I'm happy to report that after beginning the "challenge" of cooking every single night and not eating out for a week -- I DID IT! We even had a lot of company overnight during the weekend, and meals were eaten here. 
(Thanks mama for making breakfast - it was awesome!)
But as for the three pictures I did get, well - here you go!

Ravioli w/ parmesan, Casear salad, garlic toast

Sauteed cheddarwurst with onions and mushrooms, deviled eggs and green beans

Baked herb chicken, lima beans, brown rice

Other meals were:
- fish sticks with mac & cheese and peas (good quality fish sticks)
-spaghetti bake with salad and garlic bread

And then Sunday night we had a leftovers/clean out the fridge kinda night.
Sometimes you just need one of those. :)

This week our menu plan is as follows:

Monday: BBQ pork chops, homemade mashed potatoes and fresh roasted corn on the cob
Tuesday: shrimp, broccoli and sweet potato chowder with crescent rolls
Wednesday: Baked ham & cheese rolls, roasted parmesan zucchini
Thursday: pasta primavera, salad, garlic bread
Friday: sandwiches, chips & dip
Saturday & Sunday: GONE TO MAWMAWs HOUSE! 

The chowder calls for salmon instead of shrimp, but I have shrimp & I'm going to try it like that. We've had it several times before and it is AWESOME. I've had seafood haters love it, and I hate sweet potatoes but I love it! The baked ham & cheese rolls are to die for, too. If all turns out, I'll share recipes!

I hope ya'll have a great Monday!

Wednesday, October 9, 2013

Flower Urn Makeover

Hey ya'll! I hope ya'll have been having a great time! It's been pretty uneventful, which I love. :)
There's been lots of this:

Coffee is a must have. Some days I need it to breathe, you know?
Ok, not really. And that is not wine you see - it's Mountain Dew.
Yesssss, I had both of them with my Special K.
Don't judge!

The highlight of my day was getting this thing done.
It was my MawMaw's, and she passed away this time last year.
I'm honored to have it, and I love it on my front porch. :)
 I HAD a before picture, but it's on my iPad and I can't figure out how to get it onto Blogger.
It was old, dusty, and gray. Enough said.

I like taking old things like this and making them into something fresh and new.
They just don't make pieces with character anymore, I feel like.

I put some mums in it and tomorrow am painting the front door....
so be expecting a fall decoration post soon!

Monday, October 7, 2013

Happy 6th Birthday, Sara!

Somebody had a birthday!
Sara Faith turned six years old
on September 29!

I cannot believe she is 6.

11 months

Where did my little baby go?

We had a great day. That weekend, we had family come and stay with us. More family came up on Sunday and we had cupcakes, then headed out to Chuck E Cheese to eat some pizza & play! I'm not sure who had more fun -- Sara or me. I'm a sucker for CEC.
Skeeball anyone? :)

Sara started cheering a few weeksa go, and....she hates it.
She is going to stick it out through the end of thes eason, though.
It's too bad that she hates it, bu t she is super cute out there. ;)

Dear Sara,

My love for you has grown exponentially over this past year. 
We butt heads, I get frustrated when you want to wear those horrible knee-high lace-up Converse-type shoes instead of the sweet brown Mary Janes I picked out, but you have become so....wise this year. You astonish me (and your daddy) with your words and train of thought at times. 
You inspire me.
And I pray I inspire you.
You no longer want to kiss me, except for the occasional peck on the cheek or forehead, 
and only if I pretend I'm pouting and fake a few tears. 
But you give the BIGGEST hugs and I cherish each one.
 Last night you told me,
 "Mama, always remember this - even if you have no hair, you are STILL beautiful." 
Baby, you are beautiful too, outside AND inside.
You don't really play with baby dolls anymore.
"They're for babies, mama!" you say. "I want big girl things now! Like a Coach purse and an iPod!"
This year we gave you a hot pink digital camera, a REAL one - your first ever.
I can't wait to upload the footage tonight and see the world through your eyes.
.....I feel like it's going to be the most beautiful thing I've ever seen.

Love you, SareBear.