New Year’s Resolutions

I Don’t Make New Year’s Resolutions

Personally, I feel resolutions are pretty ridiculous. Not only do you never stick to them, they are usually vague, meaningless platitudes we tell ourselves to make us feel better.

Resolutions

Do you know how much gym memberships soar in January? New memberships spike in January. Between 12-50% of all new gym memberships (depending on the gym) are created in January each year. Guess how many of those new memberships last past the first week in February. It’s dismal folks. Only 20% of those people have enough resolve to stick it out a whole month. This article in the Greeley Tribune says that number is actually as low as 8%. This is just an example of how easy it is to fail in your resolutions.

New Year, New Me?

Resolutions

I hate that phrase so much! Guess what? You don’t get to wake up tomorrow and be a whole new person. It doesn’t work that way. No matter how well-meaning your resolution is, you’re not going to change everything about yourself after one alcohol-soaked night.

No Goals?

Does that mean that you shouldn’t make goals for the new year if they are just destined for failure? Absolutely not! There is a HUGE difference between a New Year’s resolution and a goal. Let me illustrate:

Resolution: I’m going to quit smoking.

Goal: I’m going to quit smoking. First, I’m going to join a smoking cessation support forum tonight. On the 2nd, I’m going to call and make an appointment with my doctor to talk about different ways I can quit. My quit day is going to be February 1st.

Resolution: I’m going to start eating healthy.

Goal: This week I’m going to research some healthy recipes that are at my level of skill. Next week, I’m going to try out one of those recipes. The following week, I’m going to try out two of those recipes. Each week, I’ll add one more recipe or remake the ones I enjoy.

Resolution: I’m going to lose 100lbs!

Goal: I’m going to lose 5 lbs by February 1st. I will check my weight each week to make sure I’m on track. I will make it easier by making a MyFitnessPal account and tracking what I eat. I’ll add 1000 steps a week until I’m doing 15k a day.

See the difference?

Be Smart

Resolutions

Goals are specific, they form a plan, and they have a time frame. If you ever want to know how to form goals, just remember to make them SMART.  They are easy to track because they have steps. It’s really easy to say you’re going to lose 50 lbs this year, but if you don’t have a plan in place and a way to gauge your progress you will not succeed.

I have goals!

I have a lot of goals for this coming year. Some are big, some are small, but they all have a plan. Want to see my plan?

Yeah, that’s the planner for 2018. It’s a lot of meal plans, calendars (personal and blog), cleaning checklists, medical info, etc. You see, my biggest goal for this year is to get more organized. This binder is my lifeline to becoming more organized. I’ve been working on it for about a month, getting it ready for the coming year.

What about weight loss?

Yes, that is still a major priority for me this year. I’m halfway to my goal of 250lbs. No, that’s not the end weight I have in mind, but it’s a milestone. The ultimate goal is 140, but that’s at least two years away. So I break it down into 50lb increments. And then further into 25lb chunks. Right now, I’m 25 lbs away from that 250 mark. My goal is to hit it before we go on vacation for our anniversary in April.

So that’s why I choose to make goals, rather than resolutions. Remember, you don’t have to wait for a new year to start making goals. If you want to do something, it’s important to start right away, at least with the planning.

By The Way

Before I close today, I wanted to apologize for my recent disappearance! Right before my birthday, our desktop computer died. We had to take it in to get a new hard drive installed. We didn’t get it back until Friday night! I was a bit lost on my blog without my giant screen and fast graphics capabilities on here. This computer is my baby!  The holidays are always a little bit hectic anyway, so I decided to take a break until we got it back.

But don’t worry, I have a calendar full of post ideas for January ready to go! I also have a parting gift for you. Here is the new art challenge for January! Or should I say….Manuary? That’s right, January’s art challenge is all about drawing the male form!

31 Days of Manuary


Daily Dose of Music

Drawcember

The Gift of Art

It’s Week Two of Amazing Mimi’s 31 Days of Drawcember! There is nothing quite like drawing Christmas and winter things to get you in the holiday mood. Unless it’s listening to Sia’s Everyday is Christmas album (listen to it here, or buy it here). When you do them both at the same time? Christmas magic.

This week in art

This week was the first full week of holiday drawing, and I got such a kick out of it. It’s been pretty neat to draw objects instead of just people. Objects and scenes are something that I definitely struggle with. It was nice to get out of my comfort zone a bit.

That said, not all of the drawings are great. In fact, some of them look like a third grader drew them. But that’s okay! Someday, I will be able to draw anything I want and make it look amazing. I’m not upset that today is not that day. It just means I have room to grow. Still, most of them are nice enough that if my son brought them home in third grade, I would have put them on the fridge.

Drawcember

So let’s take a look back at the drawing from this week!

Drawcember Day 7: Poinsettias

Drawcember

This was one of my favorites for the week. I enjoyed creating the different shapes. I know that poinsettias are rarely so symmetrical in real life, but I love the way this one came out. It was a lot of fun to color as well. The colors paired so well together!

Drawn on 75lb drawing paper with 4H pencil, Sharpie super fine marker, and Prismacolor pencils.

Drawcember Day 8: Stockings

Drawcember

The only drawing this week that was completed without color, due to the amount of time it took me to get it right. I even contemplated not inking it, but the mister suggested I take the time to do at least that and I’m glad I did. I wanted to do something other than just the object in the challenge, so I opted for a small scene and worked a bit with perspectives. It was very challenging!

Drawn on 75lb drawing paper with 4H pencil  and Sharpie super fine marker.

Drawcember Day 9: Cookies

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This one really channeled my inner child. I remember thinking, “how the heck do you draw cookies?” I decided not to go for a tutorial or anything and just jumped in with both feet, so to speak. I’m not completely disappointed with the look. The chocolate chip cookies even look pretty decent!

Drawn on 75lb drawing paper with 4H pencil, Sharpie super fine marker, and Prismacolor pencils.

Drawcember Day 10: Santa Hat

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This was the only person I drew this week, and I opted to make her a happy little chibi wearing the Santa Hat from the challenge. Yeah, her dress is short and low cut, but she is a bit of a ho, ho, ho. Aside from my terribly corny sense of humor, the hat was a little more difficult to draw than I anticipated. But still pretty cute all in all.

Drawn on 75lb drawing paper with 4H pencil, Sharpie super fine marker, and Prismacolor pencils.

Drawcember Day 11: Presents

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Another drawing using perspectives, I think this one came out a bit better. I misjudged the size and ended up going off the side of my paper, which makes it look a bit awkward, but the overall drawing isn’t bad. I enjoyed working on the bow quite a bit! There are a bunch of presents around the house with bows on them, but all of them are the foldy, sticky-back bows. I was looking to do more of a loopy ribbon bow and redrew this one probably five or six times before I was happy with it. Well worth the extra effort, the bow is easily my favorite part of this present!

Drawn on 75lb drawing paper with 4H pencil, Sharpie super fine marker, and Prismacolor pencils.

Drawcember Day 12: Ornaments

Drawcember

Another favorite from this week, I took inspiration from the graphic for my Drawcember pdf. The hanging ornaments look so elegant together, so I thought I’d give them a try. Personally, I think they came out quite nice. I like the shading on them and think they are pretty cute. The balls were easy to do with a couple of cylindrical or round objects that could be traced for their shape, but the one in the middle was a little more complicated to get just right.

Drawn on 75lb drawing paper with 4H pencil, Sharpie super fine marker, and Prismacolor pencils.

Drawcember Day 13: Snowmen

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It’s me and the mister! If we were snowmen, that is. See, the girl even has a floppy hat like the one I wear every summer. This little drawing was banged out in the thirty minutes I had free before work yesterday. I’m not taking my niece to school this week, so I’ve had a little extra time on my hands in the morning. Luckily, there wasn’t much to color on this one, so I was able to get it finished just in time. I suppose this one is channeling my inner child as well, but it’s super cute, so I don’t care.

Drawn on 75lb drawing paper with 4H pencil, Sharpie super fine marker, and Prismacolor pencils.

Next Week?

Next week, I have more festive drawings in store! Hot cocoa, a menorah, lights, reindeer, a dreidel, and mistletoe are on the list for the next week. I’m already thinking of what to do for January. I am going to go with an all-boy theme. But I’m also contemplating February, as a couples month. Double the drawing, so I’ll probably do that one as an every other day challenge! Be sure to let me know if you are joining in and share your drawings on Instagram, Facebook, or Twitter with #Drawcember.

Also, let me know which one was your favorite in the comments!


Daily Dose of Music

Recipe Review

As promised, here is my review of the Bacon Cheeseburger Cauliflower Casserole that I made last week. This odd, but delicious low-carb recipe comes from SugarFreeMom.com. I haven’t tried any of the other recipes from this site, but I’m glad I tried this one out. The rest of the family was glad too!

Difficulty Level: Normal Mode

I want to say this recipe would be suitable for n00bs, but there are a few things that aren’t really explained very well, such as steaming the cauliflower or leaving the bacon and beef drippings in the pan. There is also a discrepancy in how much flour to use in the sauce. But I’ll get to that shortly. For now, let’s just say that if you are fairly confident and competent in the kitchen, you should do just fine.

Prep Work:

You remember that great prep picture I had from the Crockpot Beef Roast review? Yeah, it’s not happening with this one. See, I have at the very most, 45 minutes to devote to cooking in the morning if I’m taking my niece to school (which I usually do). While the recipe says it takes 30 minutes of prep, I can vouch that I used every bit of that 45 minutes. And that was the second time I attempted the recipe! The first time, I only got as far as steaming and pureeing the cauliflower and browning the bacon and beef. So make sure you have plenty of time when starting this recipe.

This is how I started off: Put the bacon in a cold pan (sorry, but I’m just using regular bacon. I’m not going searching for fancy uncured, reduced-sodium bacon), plopped the steamer basket in my big pot and filled it with water just below the steamer, got out my food processor, a few bowls, the cauliflower, etc.

Getting Started on the Bacon Cheesburger Cauliflower Casserole

I broke up the cauliflower and shoved it all in the pot, turned it on high and plunked on the lid while the bacon was already sizzling. I pulled the bacon out, and tossed the beef into the same pan with the bacon drippings. Instead of measuring out a ton of spices, I used my favorite seasoning for burgers: Weber Gourmet Hamburger Seasoning. A liberal sprinkle of that and then once the meat was just about done, I sliced up the bacon and added it to the beef so it could be incorporated into the meat, instead of sitting on top of the casserole.

It was at this point that I realized just how far behind I was running, and I put down the phone and neglected my picture taking in favor of finishing the casserole before I had to run out the door. Unfortunately, I didn’t get a picture of the cauliflower puree. It looked kind of like mashed potatoes though!

Major Substitution

I opted to use almond flour rather than coconut. There were two reasons for the substitute. One, I was severely pressed for time, and taking the time it would have taken to open and then properly store my coconut flour seemed to be just too much in the moment. Two, I like almond flour. I use it all the time these days and I’m familiar with it. I’ve never used coconut flour before, even though it’s been sitting in my cabinet for months.

Next time I make this, I think I’ll take the time to open the coconut flour. It’s not that the almond flour didn’t work. But I had to use a lot more of it in the sauce than was called for, and it was a bit gritty. It also didn’t want to thicken very well. So when the recipe says that you can use a flour of choice, don’t believe it! Use the coconut flour.

Into the Fridge

I managed to snap a few more pictures as I was getting the casserole put together to go into the fridge for the day!

Yes, that’s my empty food processor. I was hoping to capture a bit of the cauliflower. Unfortunately, I don’t think it does it justice. But by then, I had the cheese, sauce, and meat layered over it. Then even more cheese. Yum. The whole thing was topped with the sauce and then went into the refrigerator until I got home from work.

Major Omission

There was one ingredient that I just “ew” about and decided not to include. I didn’t put the mustard into the sauce. I thought it just didn’t sound right. Mustard in a cream sauce? Now, I like mustard, but it just didn’t sit right with me. I should have followed the recipe.

Out of the Oven

When I got home from work, I put the casserole straight from the fridge into the oven. A no-no, I know. At least the oven was cold at the time! So I preheated the oven with the casserole in the oven. I gave it an extra ten minutes since it was thoroughly chilled. And it came out just gorgeous.

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Oh yeah. Look at that. Beautiful.

 

But How Did it Taste?

When I first took a bite, we were still standing in the kitchen, I couldn’t wait any longer. It was…pretty good. But you know, I thought it could have used a little ketchup. And then I started to wonder. Would it be good with mustard on it? I mean, there has to be a reason that it’s in the sauce right?

So I drizzled a bit of ketchup and mustard on it. HOLY SHIT. No kidding, the adding of the mustard alone made this an entirely different and utterly delicious dish. I didn’t realize that one little ingredient like that could completely change the flavor. I could still taste the cauliflower a bit, but it’s been growing on me. Slowly. Like a fungus.

This got devoured.

Rating:

Three yums and a definitely will make again. Success!


Daily Dose of Music

Mimi’s Monday Menu

It’s always nice when things go to plan. And a weekly menu is no different. Last week didn’t go exactly according to plan, but we hit all the major points. Namely, I finally got to make the Bacon Cheeseburger Cauliflower Casserole. Yum. There is a review coming on that recipe! I’ll also be reviewing the Baked Keto Chicken Tenders in Buffalo Sauce. I made them, and they were great, but I didn’t get any pictures!

I’m also planning to branch into some restaurant reviews in the new year. Up first will be The Egg and I, our new favorite breakfast place for cheat day. I’ll also be doing one on Grillin’ Wings and Things. We went there last week instead of Chick-Fil-A. Their pig wings…omg. They are a bit of low-carb heaven for sure.

Monday Menu

Last Week’s Results

I had a strange week last week, and a lot of it blurred by. But I did manage to cook for four out of seven days. We ended up making the casserole on Thursday instead of Wednesday, and as I mentioned, we went to a different restaurant, but overall, it was a good week for our menu.

Everyone truly enjoyed the Bacon Cheeseburger Cauliflower Casserole, which surprised me. I didn’t think I would like it because of my volatile relationship with the vegetable. Apparently, it is growing on me. Don’t get me wrong, I could still taste it. It’s just that the flavor didn’t seem bad to me. My taste buds must be adjusting to eating gross things.

Monday Menu

Anything new?

The Baked Keto Chicken Tenders in Buffalo Sauce are going to be a favorite, I think. They were incredibly tasty. I just wish we had realized we were out of ranch dressing before we made them. They would have been amazing with a little ranch to dip them in. Oh well. Next time!

We don’t have anything new on the menu this week, but given how close we are to Christmas, most of our meals for the next few weeks are going to be quick and easy so I can work on finishing the final gift I’m working on for my niece.

What’s on the menu this week?

It’s going to be an Ultimate Keto Bun week! Last night I broke out the almond flour and eggs and made three batches of these delicious little babies. I changed up the recipe a little bit by changing the spices. Adding some dried, minced onion in two batches, I also put some Weber burger seasoning in all three batches.

I also experimented a bit with adding a quarter teaspoon of baking powder to each batch.  I don’t really see a difference in the height of the buns, so maybe I could have added more without ill effect. Next time I’ll double the amount to a half teaspoon per batch and see if that makes a difference. Still, I am looking forward to a low-effort sandwich week, which means I’ll probably get a bit more done in the evenings than I might have.

Now, without further ado, here is the menu for this week.

Mimi’s Monday Menu:

Monday: Oven-baked cheeseburgers on The Ultimate Keto Bun

Tuesday: Dickies (Where else?)

Wednesday: Breaded chicken patties on The Ultimate Keto Bun

Thursday: Grillin’ Wings and Things

Friday: Tuna salad on The Ultimate Keto Bun

Saturday: Mini-cheat day

Sunday: Cheat Day! It’s my birthday, I get two.

Planning Your Own Week?

If you’d like to put together a dinner menu for your week, I have a nice little printable here that might help you out. Not only can you plan out your meal for each weeknight, you can also make your grocery list on the same page!

Get it here: Menu of Amazing Meals


Daily Dose of Music

Weekend Weigh-In

Welcome to the weekend weigh-in! This week seriously just flew right by, and I’m not sure where it all went. I suppose as we get closer to Christmas, life just gets that way.

Weigh-in

Still, there were some definite ups and downs throughout the week. So let’s just jump into what went down this week.

The Good

Well, I went to the doctor this past Monday. That sounds like it could be bad, and the reason for going isn’t great, but the outcome was pretty great. I haven’t been on the scale at the doctor’s office since back in May. Had they not asked me to, I would have asked to get on it so they could record the change. It was a great feeling to step on there and see the nurse’s face when she looked at my last number.

Weigh-In

Even better when she calculated it and said I’d lost 10% of my body weight! Of course, I was there to talk about my blood pressure, which was going down slowly, but still elevated for me. We decided on the course of a low dose of blood pressure medication sans diuretic. I go back after the holiday to have my blood pressure checked in the office again, but so far, I’m seeing good results with my home meter.

The PA I saw said that she is confident that if we continue what we’re doing, then I should be off the medication in a few months, tops. That’s the goal.

The Bad

I’m still dealing a bit with the injury from the fall I took the week before last. Recovering from this hasn’t been pleasant, and definitely caused a set back for me in my exercise. I’m still experiencing an occasional bit of pain in my knee when I put pressure on it, but at this point, it is getting much better.

I kept my step count lower than usual but raised it back to 15k. I still wasn’t able to do a full workout, but we continued with the 5-minute beginner cardio from HasFit.com. I’m looking forward to getting started on the whole Beginner Workout program this coming week. I can’t wait to see what kind of results we might get from it.

Looking Ahead

This coming week is going to be a bit hectic. We’re in the final stretch before Christmas, so I’m pushing to finish the one gift that I’m making and to get a few others mailed out. As I mentioned above, we are planning on restarting our workout program this week, and I’ll be bumping my steps back up to 20k a day. Given my results this week, I’m hoping to be under 275 when we weight next Saturday. That will be a happy birthday present for myself.

Yes, that’s right, my birthday is coming up next Sunday. I’m going to be 39. How the hell did that happen? Ugggghhhhh. I do not feel 39. Can I just roll the clock back about 10 years? That would feel more appropriate. Oh well, time marches on. At least it is not advancing across my face yet!

Weigh-In

I’m down.

My biggest goal for year 39? Get down to 200lbs. That means 1 ½ lbs a week for a year. Doable? Maybe. But that’s the goal, and I’m going to do my best to hit it. My ultimate goal is 140, and I’m hoping to be there by birthday number 41. But that’s way down the line. For now, I’m going to concentrate on making 39….Amazing.

Weigh-In Results:

Date: 12/09/17

Weight: 276.0 | -1.6

Body Fat %: 55.0 | +0.1

BMI: 47.4 | -0.3


Daily Dose of Music

The Gift of Art

It’s Week One of Amazing Mimi’s 31 Days of Drawcember! I’ve been having a lot of fun with this week’s drawings, though I did have to resort to a tutorial for one of them. And that’s okay! I realize that I’m just not going to be able to draw everything from either a reference or from my own head. But I am also really pleased that I’ve come so far that I no longer need a tutorial for everything I draw.

One Last Monster

Last Thursday was the final day of my Monster Girl Challenge so I didn’t get a chance to include the final drawing in my last art post. I really enjoyed that challenge. I also feel like I made some real progress with how I look at references and apply them to my drawings.

When I started Inktober, almost everything was coming from tutorials and by the time I finished out the Monster Girl Challenge, I was working entirely from reference and imagination. My techniques are improving too. I feel more confident when I sit down to draw! Instead of spending the majority of my time looking up what I should draw, I’m concentrating on improving the way I draw.

So let’s take a look back at the drawing from this week!

Monster Art Challenge Day 30: Nymph

Monster Girl Challenge

Due to my little accident last week, I was laid up quite a bit. Thursday evening, I was confined to sitting on the bed and so I resorted to an art medium that I am not fantastic at. I LOVE my tablet, don’t get me wrong. I’m just not great at digital art. Well, I’m not great at traditional art yet either, but I’m less not great at digital. Still, it was fun to break out my Surface and go to town drawing a water nymph. I wasn’t stoked over the results, but I was satisfied since I haven’t drawn anything on my tablet in months.

Drawn on my Surface Pro 4 using Adobe Photoshop CC 2017 and Lazy Izumi

Drawcember Day 1: Gingerbread Man

Drawcember

This was a super quick drawing. I was in a bit of a hurry, but I still like the way it came out. Such a simple shape and coloring. It looks a bit like something you’d find in a child’s coloring book!

Drawn on 75lb drawing paper with 4H pencil, Sharpie super fine marker, and Prismacolor pencils.

Drawcember Day 2: Yule Log

Drawcember

This is the one drawing from the past week that necessitated a tutorial. I think that it turned out pretty nice! Instead of drawing a traditional yule log, this is supposed to be one of those edible ones made of chocolate and cake. It made me hungry when I was drawing it. The tutorial for this came from the great Shoo Rayner on YouTube.

Drawn on 75lb drawing paper with 4H pencil, Sharpie super fine marker, and Prismacolor pencils.

Drawcember Day 3: Candle

Drawcember

I really liked the way this candle came out. I used the technique I learned from Shoo Rayner’s yule log tutorial for drawing the holly leaves and berries around the base. They are super easy to draw, and I’ll probably be including them in a few more drawings this month.

Drawn on 75lb drawing paper with 4H pencil, Sharpie super fine marker, and Prismacolor pencils.

Drawcember Day 4: Candy Canes

Drawcember

This one was a throw-back to last December for me. I followed a tutorial for candy canes last year. But, instead of looking up the tutorial and recreating what I’d done last year, I decided to try it from memory and make a candy cane heart. I love the way they turned out. Very festive!

Drawn on 75lb drawing paper with 4H pencil and Prismacolor pencils.

Drawcember Day 5: Bells

Drawcember

With these, I wanted to give the impression that they were hanging and ringing. I think it worked pretty well. Looking at them later on, I had a few ideas on improving them, so next time I draw something like this, I will have a better grasp of their movement and suspension.

Drawn on 75lb drawing paper with 4H pencil, Sharpie super fine marker, and Prismacolor pencils.

Drawcember Day 6: Ugly Sweater

Drawcember

This is by far my favorite of the week. Actually, it’s one of my favorites ever. I loved drawing this one. I was a little stuck for what to draw when I started, and so I went pose hunting. When I found this pose, I could just see it being a kid that was not happy. Man, I just adore the expression. I was giggling the whole time I was erasing the lines after I inked it. I couldn’t help but think this is the face my (not so little) boy would make if I made him wear a sweater like that. Unfortunately, I didn’t have time to color it but I think it’s just about perfect the way it is.

Drawn on 75lb drawing paper with 4H pencil and Sharpie super fine marker.

Next Week?

Next week, I have more festive drawings in store! Poinsettias, stockings, cookies, Santa hats, presents, ornaments, and snowmen are on the list for the next week. I can’t wait to get started on them and see where my pencil takes me. Also, I think I’ll begin working on my challenge for January. Since November was all girls, I think January will be an all-boys month! Please let me know if you are joining in and share your drawings on Instagram, Facebook, or Twitter with #Drawcember.

Also, let me know which one was your favorite in the comments!


Daily Dose of Music

Monday Menu

Mimi’s Monday Menu

Some weeks go off without a hitch. Some weeks go off the rails completely. As far as my Monday menu, last week was somewhere in between. And that’s okay! There will be days and weeks when you’re not going to be able to stick to your schedule of meals. It’s important to know when it’s okay to let it go and allow yourself some wiggle room.

Monday Menu

Last Week’s Results

I had high hopes for last week’s menu, and it started off well. The mister and I had plans to try a new recipe on Wednesday, and a few favorites throughout the week. Unfortunately, life (and my clumsiness) had other thoughts on that. On Wednesday morning, I got the cauliflower and the ground beef ready for the casserole that I planned to put together when I got home that evening, but it ended up sitting in the fridge.

After taking that tumble on Wednesday morning, there was no way I was going to stand in the kitchen and make food. So we decided to switch our meals from Wednesday and Thursday, and we went out. However, on Thursday I was not feeling anymore like cooking. So we went out again. Friday, thankfully, we got back on track.

Monday Menu

Unfortunately, the beef and cauliflower didn’t fare very well in the fridge, and I really didn’t feel like trying to salvage it, so we made the soft taco bake that was on the menu for Friday. I’m okay with that decision. It was delicious.

Anything new?

That doesn’t mean there won’t be any recipe reviews this week! On the contrary, I am trying out a new recipe tonight, and I’ll be documenting it for review tomorrow. The bacon cheeseburger cauliflower casserole will be reviewed either later in the week, or next week, since it is back on the menu this week for Wednesday.

The mister has strictly forbidden me from falling over anything else, so we shouldn’t have to worry about that.

Monday Menu

Speaking of new, I found a new work out program that we started to try last week. We only got two workouts in before I was forced into rest mode, but we restarted last night, and I’m looking forward to giving it a shot. If you’re interested, all of the workouts can be found on HasFit.com. Best of all…they are all FREE. Yes, free. All of them. I’ll be reviewing the Beginner’s workout once we try a few more of them.

What’s on the menu this week?

As I mentioned, I’ll be making two new recipes this week. The Bacon Cheeseburger Cauliflower Casserole will be on Wednesday. Tonight, I’m trying out a new keto buffalo chicken tender recipe that the mister found for us. I love it when he picks out a new recipe. I’m always worried that when I try a new one, it’s going to be something he hates. So when he has input into my experiments, it alleviates some of that pressure for me.

We also have our favorite places and some jambalaya for the end of the week. It will be nice to have some hot meals, especially since this week is supposed to be so chilly.

Without further ado, here is the menu for this week.

Mimi’s Monday Menu:

Monday: Baked Keto Chicken Tenders in Buffalo Sauce

Tuesday: Dickies (My stamp card is almost full!)

Wednesday: Bacon Cheeseburger Cauliflower Casserole

Thursday: Chick-Fil-A

Friday: Low-Carb Slow-Cooker Jambalaya

Saturday: Cheat Day!

Sunday: Nathan’s Hot Dogs with Chili

Planning Your Own Week?

If you’d like to put together a dinner menu for your week, I have a nice little printable here that might help you out. Not only can you plan out your meal for each weeknight, you can also make your grocery list on the same page!

Get it here: Menu of Amazing Meals


Daily Dose of Music

Weekend Weigh-In

Welcome back to the weekend weigh-in! I hope you all had a wonderful holiday and took the time to enjoy some good food and good family fun. As I mentioned in my Holiday Survival Guide, the mister and I do not weigh on holiday weekends. Why torture ourselves like that?  Of course, that doesn’t mean we just throw the scale out the window.

The Good

We had a wonderful holiday. We celebrated with just ourselves and my mom, and it was lovely. The food was delicious, and we ate way too much of it. I also ate far too many Hershey’s kisses over the course of two weeks. But considering that we ate so much, and the fact that I was unable to exercise for the better part of this week, I was very much okay with a tiny gain when I stepped on the scale yesterday morning.

It probably also helped that I peeked at the number on Monday morning. I was curious! I used the scale that doesn’t automatically send my stats to my phone so I knew it wouldn’t be recorded. Just wanted to get an idea of how hard my battle was going to be. I expected a larger gain, and I also didn’t expect that I would lose all of it in a single week, even if we were starting a new exercise program. If I had been able to keep at it, I think I might have lost all of it, and maybe even more.

The Bad

The week started out just peachy keen. We both liked the new exercises, we had some great recipes on our menu for the week, work was low-key, I even got all of our Christmas presents wrapped! And then Wednesday came. It all went downhill so fast. How fast? As fast as it took me to trip and fall over the canopy from our Starlighting trip.

Weekend Weigh-in

It was my own fault, of course. I wasn’t paying attention to what I was doing, talking to my mom, and turned around to go get my coffee, and my foot snagged it just right. While I’m sitting on the floor alternating between saying “ow,” laughing, and reassuring my mom that I’m okay, my uncle walks into the shop and, looking quite confused, asks if we’re doing some new exercises. My mom and I both lost it. It took me another minute or two after we stopped laughing and I stopped waving my arms like I was doing jumping jacks on the concrete floor, I finally made it back to my feet and went to retrieve my coffee. At that point, I could feel that something was not quite right with my hip. Shake it off. Shake it off.

I Couldn’t Shake it Off

Around 10 I was starting to get pretty sore, so I called my aunt to make an appointment to see her for a QE session (Quantum Energetics) for the next day, and continued on about my morning.

By 11am, when I got up to use the restroom, I could tell that this was not going to be good, and on my way back to my desk, I had to catch myself on said desk, when my whole leg went weak after pain shot through my hip.

While I’m saying, “Okay, I’m going up to urgent care,” my mom is telling me to go get looked at. So I grabbed my keys, picked up the mister, and headed up to the Kaiser medical center.

It Gets Worse

Thankfully, my x-rays came back with no broken bones, despite the amount of pain I was in. But they found another problem. They took my blood pressure around 6 times between my arrival and my leaving. Now, my bp usually hovers around 130/80ish. It was absurdly high for me. It never dipped below the 140’s over 110’s. And it got as high as 155/115. They even ordered an EKG. Luckily, that came back normal as well.

So along with the Tylenol and tramadol they sent me home with, I also had a recommendation to pick up a blood pressure cuff (which I did) and to make an appointment to see my PCP (which I also did).

There was to be no strenuous exercise for the rest of the week, but I was at least able to return to work. Unfortunately, despite my pain being greatly alleviated after my visit with my aunt (who is amazing), my blood pressure still has not dropped down into my normal range. So I have an appointment with my doctor tomorrow morning, and another appointment with my aunt on Tuesday.

Weekend Weigh-In

 

So, Now What?

I am so thankful to have the opportunity to see a QE practitioner, as I truly believe I would not be near as recovered as I am at this time, had I not been to see her. While my range of motion is still a bit limited I have been able to mostly return to normal functionality, and I haven’t needed the tramadol or the Tylenol in two days. Today, I was even able to get back to my exercises, though I took it slow and easy.

I was disappointed that I didn’t get to make the cheeseburger cauliflower casserole last week. Have no fear, I will be getting to it this week, along with another recipe that I hope to review. Stay tuned for the menu tomorrow!

And just as a PSA, always watch where you’re going!

Measurements

Date: 12/02/17

Weight: 277.6 | +0.6

Body Fat %: 54.9 | -0.0

BMI: 47.7 | -0.2

 


Daily Dose of Music

Friday Favorites

It’s the most wonderful time of the year. That’s right, the holidays are upon us! In just a few short weeks, we’ll be tearing into presents, lamenting the fact that we have to spend time with people who love us, judge us, and drive us insane, and eating far too many cookies for our own good. So what does that have to do with my Friday Favorites? I thought today, I might make a list of my all-time favorite holiday music.

holiday music

Holiday music huh?

Now, before you get on my case about not saying Christmas songs, I don’t have any issue with saying Merry Christmas, but I also don’t have a problem with any other holiday that people celebrate this time of year.

Personally, I’m all for celebrating the winter solstice, but since my family celebrates Christmas, I spend time with them and give them gifts because I love them. Most of the songs on my list have to do with Christmas, but some of them are just about winter in general. I consider them holiday songs, so that’s what I call them.

Music is Life

I really love holiday music. To me, it’s all about being festive and nostalgic. It awakens warm fuzzy feelings from when my son was small and still believed in Santa. It reminds me of cold, snowy Christmas eve’s as a kid, having hot chocolate and waiting for Santa (aka my orthodontist) to stop by with candy canes and tell us to be good and get to bed before he came back with our presents.

I REFUSE to listen to a single note of holiday music before December 1st. However, as soon as December arrives, you bet I’m listening to it. A lot.

The following ten songs can be found on my holiday playlist to be listened to while I wrap presents, draw, work, take a shower, or anything else I might do while listening to music. I hope you enjoy them as much as I do!

10. White Christmas

Oh, the feels! I was a bizarre child. I had a thing for Bing Crosby. Despite the fact that most of his movies were older than my mom, I loved to watch them. And his voice, so wow, much swoon. I really love the Drifter’s version of this song as well, but this song just says childhood to me.

9. Winter Wonderland

While any version of this song is okay by me, Amy Grant’s rendition is my favorite. I can’t even tell you why. I don’t even like Amy Grant. But I love the way she sings this song. This one has been a favorite since I was a kid. I learned the words and tune when I was about 10 years old and I’ve been singing it throughout the winter ever since.

8. Silver Bells

Yes, another rendition by good ol’ Bing. I can’t resist that crooner. But it’s not just Mr. Crosby that makes this song so good. Carol Richards lends her voice to this one and makes it that much richer in harmony. This will always be one of my favorites.

7.  White Wine in the Sun

As the heathen I am, Tim Minchin is one of my favorite comedians. And this song, though not exactly a funny song, gets me right in the feels. This, to me, is exactly what Christmas is about. When you aren’t religious, it’s still a wonderful time to celebrate and enjoy those you love.

6.  Santa Baby

Eartha Kitt’s purr is just perfect for this song. I’ve never heard anyone quite match it. It’s such a sassy song, and I’m all about sassy. This song always lifts my spirits.

5. Carol of the Bells

The first time I heard this song was when I watched Home Alone. I immediately fell in love with it, and I’ve enjoyed listening to it ever since. I’ve never actually heard a bad version of it. But this one by Lindsey Stirling just blows me away. She’s amazing.

4. Baby, It’s Cold Outside

There is a lot of controversy these days over this song, and I just don’t get it. I hear this song and think winter romance. It has been and will remain toward the top of my list of favorite holiday songs. This version by Margaret Whiting and Johnny Mercer is the best I have found. I enjoy the classic sound.

3. Good King Wenceslas

This song is such an excellent reminder of why it is important to be charitable not just at this time of year, but always. This rendition by Blackmore’s Night suits the song so well, giving it a slightly medieval flare. So pretty!

2. The Christmas Song

Who doesn’t love this song? It’s so…Christmas! And the classic, smooth voice of Nat King Cole? I just have no words for how much I love this song. It’s everything a Christmas song should be. I actually didn’t like this song at all when I was younger. It wasn’t until I was in my 20’s that I found an appreciation for it, and now I can’t imagine having it missing from my holiday playlist.

1. Feliz Navidad

Surprised? I know, it seems a strange choice for my number one favorite holiday song of all-time. But I cannot listen to this song without getting happy and in a festive mood. It’s the Gangnam Style of holiday music. I have to dance along with it whenever I hear it. So, thank you to Jose’ Feliciano for such a fantastic number. It’s catchy, it’s easy to learn, and I challenge you to not tap your toes when you listen to it. Go on. I’ll wait.

goodluck

What is your favorite holiday/Christmas song? Share it in the comments! And remember, if you need help getting past all those Christmas cookies, you can check out my Holiday Survival Guide.


Daily Dose of Music

There’s more? Yep! From now until December 26th, you can expect a new holiday song in this section.