My Goal Projects – repost

(Note: this post is actually one of the new pages on my site, My Goal Projects.  I thought you might miss it, so I wanted to go ahead and repost it on the regular blog as well.  Enjoy this recap of how I’ve learned to set goals through the years.)

Smiles Go - My Goal Projects

Over the years, I’ve gone through several goal setting projects on this blog.  This page recaps them, and takes a look at how my goal-setting process has changed over the years.  If you’re curious about the projects I’ve done on the blog over the years, this page is a great resource for you.

2009 – NEW YEAR’S RESOLUTIONS AND SHOPPING BAN

Back in 2009, I made a New Year’s resolution to spend less and focus on buying things that I really love.  However, I quickly found that my attempts at a broad budget goal weren’t working.  I learned some lessons along the way, but I wasn’t making much progress.  Midway through the year, I had to set new guidelines for myself to control my spending and spent some time trying to reflect on what went wrong.  That summer, I was still having trouble managing my spending.  Eventually I had to admit that my overarching goal of “getting on a budget” that year wasn’t working – by August, the only month I had stayed on task was January – so I began a Shopping Ban where I used an allowance and severely restricted my spending, mostly on clothes.  I found the added structure of the Shopping Ban beneficial, and it helped me stay on track.

2010 – THE GREAT SHOPPING PLAN OF 2010

After learning from my Shopping Ban, I decided to create a Shopping Plan for 2010– a planned method of how I would spend money on clothes as I was moving into a full-time job.  I created a Wardrobe Gaps list to help me focus my shopping on what I really needed.  I tracked my Shopping Plan purchases every week with blog posts.  All this structure helped me to focus on my goals, and it was fun to document what I was doing.  Goals were no longer drudgery – they were an interesting project to pursue.

2011 – 11 IN 2011

After benefiting from the structure of my previous projects, I decided to create a goal project in 2011: a set of 11 goals that I would work on throughout the year.  I tracked my 11 in 2011 project with blog posts all year.  This structure seemed pretty good, yet by the end of the year, I had only completed four of the goals and made progress on five of them.  I was beginning to realize that big, broad goals for the whole year might not be the best way to go.  However, I found that my Summer 11 in 2011 project was pretty successful – I made more progress on these short term goals than I did on my long term ones.

2012 – 12 IN 2012

January of 2012 brought categories to my yearly goal project, which helped me to organize what I wanted to achieve.  Once again, I began to realize that a year-long time frame was overwhelming, so in the summer, I created a Summer 12 project with more specific goals – this worked fabulously for me, and I managed to accomplish almost all my summer goals.

At this point, I finally got a clue and realized that I needed specific goals in specific time frames if I wanted to be successful.

I created my Fall 12 project, and I made great progress.

2013 –  THE SEASONAL 13 PROJECTS

2013 was the year I finally started getting the hang of setting goals.  I created a new goal project each season: WinterSpringSummer and Fall.  I was making much more progress – I completed 5 out of 13 in Winter (I did have to plan a wedding then too), 8 out of 13 in Spring, 8 out of 13 in Summer, and 11 out of 13 in the Fall!  At last, I found a goal process that worked for me.

2014 – THE SEASONAL 14 PROJECTS

From my post, The Winter 14:

“For the past several years, I’ve changed the way I look at setting goals.  I used to have one big resolution; an over-arching, yearlong goal that I would try to achieve.  And every year, I would either fail (too big of a goal, too unattainable), or complete my goal too early (too easy, too simple).  I’ve since learned that the best way to become the best version of myself is by focusing on several SMART goals (specific, measurable, attainable, realistic and time-limited) each season.  This gives me a shorter time span, and often these goals have a specific task or amount of time to complete them.  So rather than having a goal like: “Be less stressed out”  I have goals like: “Download and try out a meditation app” and “Go to yoga class five times”.  These little goals add up to the larger idea I had in mind, and pursuing them means I might actually get to the place I want to go.”

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The Winter 14

The Winter 14

**Every season, I post a set of goals that I set out to accomplish. I track my progress here on my blog. I like the challenge of setting goals – it helps me to accomplish so much more. This post features my Winter 14 goals**

For the past several years, I’ve changed the way I look at setting goals.  I used to have one big resolution; an over-arching, yearlong goal that I would try to achieve.  And every year, I would either fail (too big of a goal, too unattainable), or complete my goal too early (too easy, too simple).  I’ve since learned that the best way to become the best version of myself is by focusing on several SMART goals (specific, measurable, attainable, realistic and time-limited) each season.  This gives me a shorter time span, and often these goals have a specific task or amount of time to complete them.  So rather than having a goal like: “Be less stressed out”  I have goals like: “Download and try out a meditation app” and “Go to yoga class five times”.  These little goals add up to the larger idea I had in mind, and pursuing them means I might actually get to the place I want to go.

I’ve organized my fourteen goals for winter into categories that make sense for my life.  These are inspired by Sage Grayson and her categories.  Sage also has an awesome post on New Year’s Resolutions, if you’re needing some ideas.

Personal/ Home

  • Blog on Smiles Go With Everything at least 2x week – While I’d love to blog everyday, I know with my current schedule, it’s just not happening.  But I know that I can manage at least one a week.  Especially now that I have an iPhone and iPad.  I need to get back into the groove.
  • Frog an old project and knit something new – I really want to get back into the habit of knitting, but I can’t afford to buy new yarn while trying to deal with my credit card debt.  But I have a bunch of old projects that, while they came out nicely, never get worn.  So I’m going to frog (i.e. take apart) these old projects and reuse the yarn to make something new.
  • Do some serious mending and alterations – A lot of my clothes need minor fixes, but I’m trying to save money right now, so going to the tailor for all of them isn’t an option.  So I need to have a couple sewing sessions and fix up some of the stuff I have already.

Food

  • Plant 2nd veggie garden – My first veggie garden I planted in the fall has been a success, so now I want to plant a second one.  Saving money, increasing self-sufficency, and having awesome fresh veggies – it’s a win all around.
  • Try 4 new recipes and blog them – I just bought Make it Paleo a few months ago.  That book is huge, and there’s so many recipes I want to try.  And I still find myself falling into the old rut of  tacos, roast chicken, pot roast, burgers etc that I always make.  So I need to try out some more new recipes and blog them.

Health

  • Walk 10,000 steps each day – I got a Jawbone with my Christmas money (used on eBay, only $70!) because I’ve realized that I’m a person who loves numbers and data.  Just saying I’m going to walk ten minutes everyday doesn’t work for me.  Having a gadget that gives me numbers and a goal to reach – now I might be getting somewhere.  Maybe this will be the season where I finally develop the habit of walking.
  • Go to Yoga class five times during the season– I’ve really, really neglected my yoga practice.  And I’ve found that I’m most able to focus when I go to a class – practicing at home doesn’t work as well for me.  So I’m going to buy a five class package and make a commitment to use it up.  And then maybe in the spring I can increase it to ten.
  • Make or buy some blackout curtains for the bedroom – I use a Tempurpedic eye mask, and it has improved my sleep dramatically – it blocks out almost all light.  But I know I’ll never convince my husband to wear one, and when he has trouble sleeping, I have trouble sleeping.  So I’m going to add a blackout liner to our curtains, and hopefully it will help us both get some better sleep.

Financial

  • Use Mint to set a budget – I’ve been using Mint regularly for about a month now, and it’s revolutionized my budgeting process.  I no longer have to go back and forth between spreadsheets and bank statements – everything is all in one place.  I’ve mainly been letting it track what I spend for the last month, but now I want to start using it as a budget – making sure I don’t go over.  If I can be firm about it, maybe I can finally get control of my finances.
  • Pay off that credit card!!! – Annnnd this one.  I tried to pay off my credit card in the fall, but between medical necessities (prescription sunglasses, dental filling) and CostCo trips, my debt went up instead of down.  I should have about six paychecks during this season, so if I can make a $125 payment with each paycheck and NOT add more debt, I can pay this thing off by the spring.  THIS MUST HAPPEN.

Career

  • Join a Twitter chat – I’ve been doing a lot of professional development online lately.  I’ve created a Twitter account I use for work, a library blog (still kind of in progress), and done other things to create an online presence professionally.  But I want to do even more networking with fellow librarians, and everyone keeps telling me that Twitter chats are the way to go.  So I want to participate in at least one Twitter chat this season.
  • Watch a TED talk– I’ve been learning a lot lately about how libraries and the Maker movement can go hand and hand.  And I want to incorporate Makerspace ideas into my media center.  I also know that there’s a lot of TED talks on Makers, and that lots of important people in the library industry watch these videos.  So I need to see what all the fuss is about.  Already got the app on my iPad, just need to pick a video.

Spiritual

  • Download a meditation app and try it out – I’ve had a lot of issues with stress lately, and I’ve been really wanting to try meditation.  But I also have ADD, and I find it hard to sit still and focus.  So I want to try downloading a meditation app on my phone and see if this can help me build this habit. Stress reduction is something I really need to work on.
  • Attend a local  meditation class – Ditto pretty much everything above.  There’s a lot of local meditation centers that offer free or cheap guided meditation classes.  Going to a physical location and having someone else guide me through meditation seems like it could be a good thing for me.

 

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2013: My Year in Review

2013 was a huge year for me.  I got married!  I started getting serious about my career!  And I had some pretty good goal-accomplishing.  So here’s my year in review, by seasons:

Photobooth picture

Winter was probably the most eventful part of the year for me.  My husband got promoted and started grad school.  We got married.  I kicked some butt with my Winter 13 goals.  I completed my first 21DSD.  I made sauerkraut from scratch for the first time.

Legend of Zelda ending

Spring helped me to get back into the groove after all the wedding craziness.  I really started to figure out how to balance fun and work with my goals.  I beat Legend of Zelda: A Link to the Past and read Volume 1 of The Complete Sherlock Holmes.  I went biking on the Pinellas trail and wrote a bento Q & A post.  I wrote some recipe posts and learned how to grow celery from scraps.

I love the river

I love the river

Summer is always a busy time of year for me, since I’m off of work (at least, my regular schedule).  I fixed up my recipe notebook and tried some new recipes.  I finally organized my mud room into a pantry.  I went no ‘poo.  I blogged some outfits and read a lot.  I also got in two beach trips (one to Reddington, and the other to Siesta Key for our honeymoon).

 

The 21 Day Sugar Detox Book

The 21 Day Sugar Detox Book

You’ve already seen my Fall goals recap, so you know a lot of what went on these last few months.  I also went through the 21 Day Sugar Detox again (see most of my November posts).  A lot of important stuff happened that I didn’t blog.  I was gifted an iPad, and bought an iPhone, which has taken my work productivity to another level.  I went to a work conference and have started seriously networking and developing myself professionally.

And I’ve been thinking and reflecting a lot about this blog and about life.  I know that I don’t post as much as I used to, and that this blog is very, very different from when I first started it.  I don’t post outfits very often anymore.  Bento posts come and go.  I think my blog is now at a point where, it’s kind of a journal of things I want to share with the world, and also a way to motivate myself to set goals and achieve them.  I’m still figuring out exactly what niche I fit into (if there is one).  But this blog isn’t going anywhere – even if I only find time to blog once a month, I still love doing it.  So here’s to more sharing my life with you in 2014.  Happy New Year!

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Fall 13 in 2013 Wrap Up

**Every season, I post a set of goals that I set out to accomplish. I track my progress here on my blog. I like the challenge of setting goals – it helps me to accomplish so much more. This post features the wrap up of my Fall 13 goals**

I’ll admit, this fall, I wasn’t terribly good at posting updates about my 13 in 2013 progress.  I plan to remedy that with my Winter 14 (coming soon).  While I had a posting frenzy during my 21 Day Sugar Detox, I’ve been pretty quiet on the blog otherwise.  Sometimes, you just have to choose between living life or documenting it, so I chose living.  But, now that I’m all teched out (iPad! iPhone!), I see my productivity coming back.

So here’s how I did with my goals this fall:

 

French press coffee
French press coffee
  • Drink “slow” coffee on the weekends, and green tea on weekdays – Done and then some.  I’ve pretty much stopped drinking coffee from my coffee maker, and have switched to only French Press and cold-brewed coffee.  So much better.  Didn’t fully switch over to green tea, but I’m okay with that
  • Make 24 hour fermented yogurt – Done and blogged.
  • Add two new recipes to my regular repertoire – Done and blogged.
Before... After

Before… After

 

HOME

  • Organize outdoor shed – I cleaned out all the junk we don’t use and reorganized what we do use.  Much easier to find stuff now.
  • Start composting for real – Didn’t buy a compost tumbler, but I discovered that my vintage West Bend tins work great as compost keepers when you put a ziplock in them.  While I don’t like creating some extra garbage, I think it makes up for it in the fact that now I’m composting constantly.
My little veggie garden

My little veggie garden

 

  • Build a raised bed garden  – Success!  I’m growing romaine, tomatoes, a pumpkin (just for the heck of it) and some celery.  I’m already working on my second one.
DIY Toothpaste

DIY Toothpaste – tastes better than it looks

 

PERSONAL

  • Make vanilla extract for xmas gifts– Didn’t happen at all.
  • Try a natural oral care routine – Done.  I adapted Wellness Mama’s recipe to make my own toothpaste.  I’m using Orawellness’ Healthy Mouth Blend.  I’m also using a tongue cleaner, and sometimes I oil pull with coconut oil.  My mouth looks and feels good, and my breath isn’t too bad either.

FINANCIAL

  • Learn about retirement plans – Making some progress in this realm.  Still have to do more research about possibly moving from an investment to a pension plan.  Meanwhile, in January I’ll start setting aside money with every paycheck for a separate retirement account.
  • Finally sell all that stuff lying around on eBay – Still have more stuff to sell, but I made good progress on it.
  • Pay off my credit cards – Didn’t work out so good.  I actually have more debt now than I started with.  Mostly, there were several large purchases that had to happen.  I lost my prescription sunglasses, so I had to spend $200 on a new pair.  I needed a filling, so there was another $100 at the dentist.  Plus lots of little things came up, which kept adding onto the debt.  Even though I’ve been paying a bit on my credit cards with each paycheck, I haven’t gotten it down to zero yet.  Need to keep working on this one.
Chambray shirt - one of my newest work pieces

Chambray shirt – one of my newest work pieces

CAREER

  • Buy at least three new work wardrobe pieces – Done!  Didn’t document them all, but I did have a couple of consignment store trips to get new work pieces.  My work wardrobe still needs an overhaul, but this was a good start.
  • Read 10 YA books and one professional development book – Done and done.  I actually read way more than 10 YA books, and I read one professional book.
Some of the books I read

Some of the books I read

What personal goals did you accomplish in 2013?  

I’ll be posting a year-in-review soon, then it’s on to my Winter 14 goals!

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Chambray shirt and a brick wall

 

Chambray shirt

Sometimes it takes me a long time to warm up to trends.  When leggings first came back in the mid-2000s, I swore I’d never wear them.  Now I love them.  When skinny jeans became a trend, I clung to my boot-cut pairs.  Now I wear both.  And when chambray shirts started to be a thing, I couldn’t understand who would ever want to wear a denim shirt.  Now, I’ve been converted.

This shirt is light, comfortable, and a nice blend of casual and dressy.  Paired with black capris and some neutral accessories, it makes a fine outfit for a day of work.  BTW, I took these photos in my favorite breakfast spot at work.  Now that I have a place where I can easily take pictures in the morning (before I’m on the clock of course), I might actually be able to post outfits more than once every few months.  No promises though.Vivobarefoot Kalis

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21 DSD: After the detox

**I’m currently participating in the 21 Day Sugar Detox and I’m recording it here on my blog.  I’ll be posting pictures of the food I’m eating, as well as reflections about what I’m experiencing.  Enjoy**

The 21 Day Sugar Detox Book

The 21 Day Sugar Detox Book

I just wrapped up my second 21 day sugar detox on Sunday.  My first one was back in January. Overall, I would say that this one was easier as far as food preparation goes, and a lot of that is thanks to  The 21-Day Sugar Detox book.  Having a ton of delicious, new recipes to try out made all the difference in the world for this detox.  I didn’t really find myself missing any non-detox foods (except grapes.  God, I love grapes).  The treats kept me happy and satisfied – I haven’t even had a bite of a chocolate bar yet.  I’m breaking down my experience into separate sections, so this is part book review, part recap of my 21DSD experience.

Recipes:

Here’s a list of the recipes I tried from  The 21-Day Sugar Detox:

  • Pumpkin pancakes (p 98)
  • Tomato-basil quiche with bacon and spinach (p 104)
  • Chicken with tri-color peppers (p 108)
  • Hot & Sweet Ginger Garlic Chicken (p 116)
  • Jalapeno bacon burgers (p 120)
  • Italian style Stuffed Bell Peppers (p 124)
  • Greek tomato and cucumber salad (p 175)
  • Cocoa-chili roasted cauliflower (p 179)
  • Simple Beef Jerky (p 184)
  • Banana coconut ice cream (p 197)
  • Lemon vanilla meltaways (p 202)
  • Moo-less chocolate mousse (p 203)
  • Sweetener free ketchup (p 214)
  • Balsamic Vinaigrette dressing (p 218)

So, in 21 days, I tried fourteen different recipes, many of which were new-to-me.  Talk about variety!  And there’s still a lot of recipes that I plan on trying even after the detox.

I have to be honest, when I first heard about this book coming out, I thought “Do I really need to go spend money on this when I already have the eBook and Practical Paleo and listen to the Balanced Bites podcast every week?  Won’t this all be stuff I already know?”  I can tell you now, that after living with the book for the past three weeks, it was well worth the money. Yes, the text at the beginning was a review of a lot of things I had already read – but it’s good to be reminded of why I eat how I do.   While I don’t use Levels 1 or 2, there’s a lot of good support for these two programs, and they’re a fantastic transition for someone who’s completely new to eating like this, since neither plan is strictly “Paleo”.  And while I’m not a meal plan person so much, the provided meal plans are great for someone who needs more guidance.

For me personally, I would have bought the book for the recipes alone – they’re fabulous.  Beautiful pictures, clear directions, and lots of them.  As you saw if you followed my detox, they’re also very easy to modify.  Have chicken and kale on hand?  Throw that in your tomato basil quiche instead of bacon and spinach.  Have a nut allergy?  Stuff your chocolate cups with banana ice cream.  One of my favorite parts of this detox was getting to experiment with all these different recipes.  I even created a few of my own (detailed posts on 21DSD chocolate shake and coconut creamer coming soon).

The most important recipes for helping me through this detox: the ketchup and the moo-less mousse. I love ketchup on my eggs, and I really missed it during my first detox.  This time, I made a jar of ketchup before the detox, and I still have some left.  It made breakfast so much better.  Meanwhile, the moo-less mousse was super easy to make and kept my chocolate cravings at bay.  It allowed me to have a little treat with lunch while getting some healthy, filling fats in as well.  Win-win.

(During the sugar detox, I also made recipes from Well Fed,  Make it Paleo, and Practical Paleo.)

Products and Supplements

In addition to all the fabulous recipes, having certain products and supplements on hand (many of which were recommended by the book) made my detox go much smoother.

Reflections

While looking back over my 21DSD posts, I find that I learned about a lot more than just food and how it affects my body.

Here’s the main things I feel I learned during the detox:

  • Preparation is key: Have some lazy meals planned for days when you have no energy to cook.  Always have protein on hand.  Pack snacks and/or lunch if you’re going to be out for a few hours.
  • Good sleep is essentialSleep should be your main priority – it may even be more important than what you eat.  Getting plenty of good, quality sleep makes eating healthy so much easier.
  • Stress affects everything: I struggled with stress a lot during this detox.  It wasn’t because of the food limitations.  Work was extra crazy these last few weeks.  My husband was finishing up a paper for his grad school class.  And my cortisol levels were all over the place.  I’ve learned that I don’t currently handle stress well.  So I plan now to try out meditation, get in more relaxing walks, and generally just try to breathe more.
  • Eat mindfully: Before the detox, I had a bad habit of multi-tasking while eating.  I’d read a book or a magazine.  I’d browse Facebook on my iPad.  I’d watch television.  I’d work on my computer at work.  During the detox, I began cultivating the habit of mindful eating.  I just focus on eating.  I take small bites, put my fork down, and notice the flavors and textures of my food.  I take deep breaths while eating.  It really does make a difference,  and this is something that I will continue long after the detox.
  • Don’t make excuses:  During my detox, I went to a family dinner, my cousin’s wedding, and an out of town conference.  I worked full-time and stayed late for after work meetings some days.  And I was able to stay on the detox the entire time.  If you plan ahead and stay prepared, you can easily stay on the detox no matter where you go.  I could have easily slipped at any one of those events by making excuses, but I didn’t.

Wrap-up

Overall, this experience was definitely a positive one for me.  I’m really looking forward to The 21-Day Sugar Detox Cookbook coming out, and I’ll probably participate in another detox in January using the new recipes.

Have you ever participated in the 21 Day Sugar Detox or a similar program?  What was the main thing you took away from that experience?

The 21-Day Sugar Detox

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21 DSD: Day 21

**I’m currently participating in the 21 Day Sugar Detox and I’m recording it here on my blog.  I’ll be posting pictures of the food I’m eating, as well as reflections about what I’m experiencing.  Enjoy**

21DSD- Day 21

Stats:

  • Breakfast: Tomato basil quiche (recipe in The 21-Day Sugar Detox) guacamole, sauerkraut, homebrew kombucha
  • Lunch: Shredded chicken, cauliflower, green beans, tomatoes
  • Snack: Ice cream cups (made from combining Almond butter cup and Banana coconut ice cream recipes from The 21-Day Sugar Detox)
  • Dinner: Chicken and spinach in bone broth
  • Other:  Green tea, herbal tea, water with lemon, coconut water, coffee
  • Supplements:  Lewis Labs Brewer’s Yeast, L-Glutamine, Natural Calm (magnesium)
  • Sleep time and quality: 8.5 hours, but took awhile to fall asleep, and didn’t sleep straight though.
  • Start and end time: 9:30pm – 6:00am
  • Exercise: Yard work 30 minutes, nine square (variation of 4 square) for 30 minutes
  • Mood & Energy: Good, decent amount of energy.

The last day of my detox went well.  I was feeling kind of lazy with my meals, so I mostly focused on reheating leftovers in different variations.  Now that I’ve successfully used up my leftovers, I’ll get back to cooking again.

Interestingly, I think that I may have a sensitivity to coconut, or at least coconut butter.  After eating my insanely delicious ice cream cups, my digestion was really wonky.  I’m really hoping I don’t have a sensitivity to FODMAPs, but I noticed something similar while eating Brussels sprouts.  I’m not ready to go completely FODMAP free yet, but I’m trying to avoid coconut and take note of when I get symptoms with other FODMAPs.  I’ve read that it might just be the high fiber content of the butter – I haven’t had this issue before with coconut milk or oil.  There’s always something new to figure out.

I’ll be writing up a reflection post on my DSD experience in the next couple of days.

My main reflection for today: Perfectly clean paleo isn’t always perfect for everyone.  You still have to pay attention to what you eat and how it affects your body.

The 21-Day Sugar Detox

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21 DSD: Day 20

**I’m currently participating in the 21 Day Sugar Detox and I’m recording it here on my blog.  I’ll be posting pictures of the food I’m eating, as well as reflections about what I’m experiencing.  Enjoy**

21DSD- Day 20

Stats:

  • Breakfast: Scrambled eggs, guacamole, sauerkrauthomebrew kombucha
  • Lunch: Shredded chicken, cauliflower, sauteed green beans, tomatoes, mayo (via Well Fed)
  • Snack: Banana coconut ice cream(recipe in The 21-Day Sugar Detox)
  • Dinner: Chopped burger over romaine, guacamole, tomatoes and olives with mayo (via Well Fed)
  • Other:  Green tea, herbal tea, water with lemon, coconut water, a lot of coffee
  • Supplements:  Lewis Labs Brewer’s Yeast, L-Glutamine, Natural Calm (magnesium), Fermented Cod Liver Oil/Butter Oil Blend
  • Sleep time and quality: 9 hours, woke up twice
  • Start and end time: 9:30pm – 6:30am
  • Exercise: None
  • Mood & Energy: Mood was great, but I needed a lot of coffee to get any energy

Day 20!  I’m almost there!  Today was a day of mentally relaxing and recovering from all of the focus and energy I had at the conference I was at the past two and a half days.  I slept in, did some cooking experiments (ice cream!!  and wait til you see the ice cream cups I made!).  I went garage sale shopping.   I went to a consignment store to get clothes for work.  I did laundry.  I watched some Doctor Who (trying to watch the last few episodes of Season 7 before I go to the Day of the Doctor showing on Monday night).  Basically, I spent the day doing whatever I felt like.  And it felt good, even though I fueled my day with coffee more than I should have.

My main reflection for today: Rest and recovery isn’t just physical – sometimes we need mental rest and recovery as well.

The 21-Day Sugar Detox

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21 DSD: Days 17, 18, 19

**I’m currently participating in the 21 Day Sugar Detox and I’m recording it here on my blog.  I’ll be posting pictures of the food I’m eating, as well as reflections about what I’m experiencing.  Enjoy**

This post consists of three days where I went out of town for a work conference.  I knew ahead of time that being out of town while on the detox wouldn’t be easy, but with preparation, it was a breeze.

21DSD- Day 17

Day 17 Stats:

  • Supplements:  Lewis Labs Brewer’s Yeast, L-Glutamine, Natural Calm (magnesium)
  • Sleep time and quality: 7 hours, didn’t sleep well
  • Start and end time: 10:20pm – 5:20am
  • Exercise: None
  • Mood & Energy: Excited for conference, but tired too

Day 17 was a crazy day. I worked a half day, then drove an hour and a half to Orlando for a work conference. I’m staying, to my chagrin, in a fancy hotel since that’s where the conference is. Apparently, fancy people don’t use microwaves. There is however, a mini-fridge, which I packed with all four of my bento boxes, kombucha and snacks (beef jerky, green apple slices, lemon vanilla meltaways) for the next two days.  I also brought my own coconut milk to add to the coffee I buy at the coffee lounge, and tea bags (you can get hot water for free if you ask nicely).

Tonight, I made a trip out to Whole Foods for dinner. Even at $15, it was still cheaper than the restaurants here. The only questionable thing was that two of the items I bought had some canola oil in them, but I wasn’t too freaked out because there would have been canola in whatever I got at a restaurant here too.

On my way back from Whole Foods, I managed to get lost in the maze that is the Disney complex. Seriously, I literally drove in circles for half an hour before finally finding my way back to my hotel.

My main reflection for today: When you’re traveling, plan everything out ahead of time.  Bring tea bags.  Know where the local Whole Foods is.

21DSD- Day 18

Day 18 Stats:

  • Breakfast: Tomato basil quiche (recipe in The 21-Day Sugar Detox) guacamole, homebrew kombucha
  • Lunch: Hot and sweet chicken (recipe in The 21-Day Sugar Detox), green beans and tomatoes, celery and carrots with mayo (via Well Fed), moo-less mousse (recipe in The 21-Day Sugar Detox) and coconut butter
  • Snack: Jerky and green apples
  • Dinner: Pork chop with sauteed spinach and tomato and olives
  • Other:  Green tea, herbal tea, water with lemon, coconut water, coffee with coconut creamer
  • Supplements:  Lewis Labs Brewer’s Yeast, L-GlutamineNatural Calm (magnesium)
  • Sleep time and quality: 9 hours, but pretty intermittent
  • Start and end time: 9:00pm to 6:00am
  • Exercise: Lots of walking
  • Mood & Energy: Excited, good energy

First full day of the conference, I was excited and ready to go.  I used strategies to save money and eat healthy – I brought my own coconut milk and added it to the $3 coffee the hotel had.  I brought tea bags and my tea tumbler and got free hot water.  There was a lot of tea drinking.  And since I had my breakfast and lunch in bentos, the only thing I had to buy was dinner.  I read the menu beforehand and made sure to let the waiter know that I couldn’t have gluten, dairy or soy.  The food was delicious, though way too expensive.

My brain started to feel tired from all the things I was learning and all the networking and socializing I was doing, so by the time I finally got back to my room, I collapsed into bed.

My main reflection for today: When going out to eat, check out the menus ahead of time, and don’t be afraid to ask questions.

21DSD- Day 19

Day 19 Stats:

  • Breakfast:  Tomato basil quiche (recipe in The 21-Day Sugar Detox) guacamole, sauerkraut, homebrew kombucha
  • Lunch: Chicken salad with guacamole, tomatoes, balsamic dressing (recipe in The 21-Day Sugar Detox), carrots with mayo (via Well Fed), green apple with lemon vanilla meltaway (recipe in The 21-Day Sugar Detox)
  • Snack: Beef jerky, bone broth
  • Dinner: Rosemary broiled salmon (recipe in The 21-Day Sugar Detox) with green beans and tomatoes
  • Other:  Green tea, herbal tea, water with lemon, coconut water
  • Supplements:  Lewis Labs Brewer’s Yeast, L-GlutamineNatural Calm (magnesium)
  • Sleep time and quality: 8 hours, woke up twice
  • Start and end time: 10:00pm – 6:00am
  • Exercise: Lots of walking
  • Mood & Energy: Excited, started to feel mentally worn out

The last day of the conference was busy and beneficial. I was learning a lot.  I also found that it was really good for me to get away from the crowds for a bit.  I skipped one session to just walk around the grounds for twenty minutes, be by myself, and process things. I think this is essential for someone introverted like me.  Sometimes I just need to get away from the crowds and be alone.

After the long drive home, I was happy to make a simple dinner – I quickly defrosted some salmon and made rosemary broiled salmon.  The green beans were leftovers, and the tomatoes only took a minute.  Then I vegged out with my husband and watched The Wire – that show is really good.

My main reflection for today: Know your quick and easy recipes for days when your energy is low.

The 21-Day Sugar Detox

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21 DSD: Day 16

**I’m currently participating in the 21 Day Sugar Detox and I’m recording it here on my blog.  I’ll be posting pictures of the food I’m eating, as well as reflections about what I’m experiencing.  Enjoy**
21 DSD - Day 16 copy

Stats:

  • Breakfast: Pumpkin pancake (recipe in The 21-Day Sugar Detox) hard-boiled eggs, chicken, sauerkraut, homebrew kombucha
  • Lunch: Chicken salad with avocado, tomatoes, cucumbers, olives, balsamic dressing (recipe in The 21-Day Sugar Detox), carrots, celery and mayo (via Well Fed), moo-less mousse (recipe in The 21-Day Sugar Detox)
  • Snack: Bone broth and roasted marrow
  • Dinner: Tomato basil quiche made with chicken and kale, 21DSD ketchup (recipes in The 21-Day Sugar Detox)
  • Other:  Green tea, herbal tea, water with lemon, coconut water
  • Supplements:  Lewis Labs Brewer’s Yeast, L-Glutamine, Natural Calm (magnesium)
  • Sleep time and quality: 9 hours, woke up once
  • Start and end time: 8:30pm – 5:20am
  • Exercise: Walked 10 minutes
  • Mood & Energy: Okay, still dealing with aftermath of work stress

Today was a day of crazy food prep and packing.  I’m going to a work conference Thursday and Friday, so I want to make sure that I’m good for food the whole time.  I actually spent more time planning meals than planning my outfits.  I’ve got bento boxes together for breakfast and lunch both days, and plan on going out to dinner with friends both nights.  I’ve already checked the restaurant menus, so I know what I’ll be ordering.  And I’m even bringing my own coconut creamer to have with coffee from the hotel coffee bar.  Is this over the top?  Maybe, but I want food to be the least of my worries while I’m at this conference.  Knowing that I have tasty, well-prepared foods available to eat will help me to relax and focus instead on learning and growing in my profession.  I’ll still be posting on Instagram the next couple of days, but there won’t be another blog post until Saturday, where I’ll catch you up on how things went.

How do you prepare for trips out of town?  Do you bring food with you?  Shop once you get there?  Go out to eat everyday?

My main reflection for today: A little preparation today can prevent a lot of stress tomorrow.

The 21-Day Sugar Detox

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