Sunday, 4 November 2012

Life challenge - weeks 33-34 - exercise and food

Move your body
 I enjoy exercise, when I do it. Before kids I was at the gym 4-6 times per week. I would go before work and on the weekends. Since having kids (my son is now 6), my gym membership comes and goes. I'm currently not a member as I've prioritised spending time with the kids. I get home from work at 6pm and I want to spend time with them. At the gym I prefer the classes - and the last one is 7.30pm - so I just can't fit it in as well as spending time with the kids. I have a treadmill at home, along with Jillian Michael's exercise DVDs and the wii with wii fit and wii active. I was a

I ran the city to bay (12km) in September in 1 hour and 5 minutes! I was so proud. But since then my exercise has been lacking. This week I decided it was time to get back on the bike (or treadmill as the case may be). I aimed to do 3 sessions, with the plan to increase it back to 4 as I was doing before the city to bay in a few weeks. I felt like I failed....but if I really think about it, I think I did okay in the end. I ran on the treadmill on Monday.  Then nothing, nothing, nothing until Saturday. On Saturday I did the wii. I started a 30 day challenge on the wii fit. So I did day 1 (only was 15 minutes), followed by 20 minutes or so of wii fit - yoga and hoola hoops and balance exercises. Then today I did another 30 minutes on the wii (day 2 of the 30 day challenge - tomorrow is rest day for the challenge). It is quite different to a full  on work out at the gym - and even different to running on the treadmill. But I need to get a more rounded workout, rather than just running. So even though I didn't feel I had worked that much, today I was sore in the muscles - I certainly felt it.

I'm planning to get more even with my exercise this week. I've planned a work out for Monday (treadmill), Wednesday and Friday. I'm going to mix up treadmill, Wii and the exercise DVDs.

Eating habits
I want to lose a few kilos, so decided I was also going to start watching what I eat better this week. We meal plan already, have done for years. It's too stressful without it!  I have a thermomix so can cook things from scratch.  I thought I had done quite well with the eating, but did have a naughty lunch on Saturday with my sister in law (pizza and pasta at Caffe Primo). But when I weighted today I had put on 400g. Hmm so something isn't working. My hubby wants to lose weight too - so this week I'm going to monitor what I eat again. Less snacking and more healthy options.

Life Challenge week 43 - Holidays - visions and expectations

Our Christmases have changed over the years from being very busy and full on to quite quiet. To be honest I prefer the livelier gatherings. As I kid we used to drive from our house around 3 hours to my Dad's families and have a big lunch get together. Then we would rush off to dinner with my Mum's family. This was busy, tiring but fun! When hubby and I first got together we would have big Christmases with his extended family - but along the line we lost those too. One of Hubby's brothers decided they didn't want to travel on Christmas Day to see both families - so now we do Christmas Day one year with Hubby's family, but the alternate year we catch up with them sometime before Christmas Day. These years are always quiet for us as my parents/sister's family are busy at lunch so we are often on our own at lunch. I want to catch up with my family each year - so we do dinner with my family each year. 

When thinking about what I enjoy and don't enjoy about Christmases of the past I get the following:

Don’t enjoy

  • Christmas cards – writing them/sending them/feeling guilty at receiving them
  • Eating a big lunch and a big dinner
  • The stress of buying presents, what to buy and so on
  • Last minute shopping – can’t get a park at the shopping centre
  • Being rushed


  • Putting up the Christmas tree as a family, listening to Christmas Carols, decorating the house
  • Spending time with family
  • Giving presents to the kids
  • Seeing the excitement from the kids
  • Advent calendars
  • Giving World Vision gifts as the Cards for school/childcare teachers/staff
  • Sharing with those in need - giving food for hampers etc, discussing this with the kids
  • Christmas pageants

This year I want to start the Elf on a Shelf tradition. I thought about it last year but wasn’t organised in time. This year I’m following My Elf on a Shelf series and have just purchased my girl elf and book.  I hope this will be a great tradition!

Sunday, 28 October 2012

Life challenge - week 36 - beauty

Given I'm a bit behind I'm choosing which challenges I want to do as I go...last week I decided to tackle the beauty, rituals, routines, indulgences. I'm very low maintenance when it comes to beauty. I get my hair cut every 6 months or so - colour at home inbetween (this is a necessity, as unfortunately I have had grey hair since 15). Then I tie it up in a pony tail flipped under style (hard to explain but same every single day - I may do something different once a week). Make-up....hmm what's that again? Well actually I know what make up is - I have some good stuff. Had a clean out not too long ago and purchased some nice new stuff. But don't wear it much. Only if I'm going out for the night (which lets face it, isn't often). Clothes and shoes etc, I've just started to get some nice new dresses. I was never a dress person but am starting to like them - so my wardrobe is doing okay (not great - but okay).

I do like to treat myself to the odd massage now and then (I had one on Friday actually), and will get pedicures and manicures from time to time as an indulgance.

And I did have laser eye surgery a few months ago - so I guess that was beauty related. NO MORE GLASSES!!!

At the beginning of the week I set myself 2 mini-goals for the week:
1. Wear lipstick/lipgloss every day
2. Not to wear my hair the same 2 days in a row

Then I planned to write what I did each day, e.g. Monday I plaited my hair and wore Atzec bronze lipstick. Tuesday I put my hair in a bun and wore my light pink lipstick and so on. I was doing well, until I got to Thursday - and I didn't have enough time to work out how to do my hair. So my hair was the same from Thursday onwards. And then the weekend came and I forgot about lipstick. I did have a Mums group dinner and did a full face make up - but no lipstick. I think one reason was my daughter had her ballet concert and I was helping her get her costume on etc and didn't want to risk lipstick getting on her costume.

Anyway what I learned during this week was, really, I'm low maintenance. That doesn't bother me. I don't mind having my hair the same every day. It's quick, it's easy and it works for me. I did enjoy wearing lipstick to work - but I don't feel any worse not wearing it. I will try and put lipstick/lipgloss on most days, but I'm not going to beat myself up over it if I forget!

Thursday, 18 October 2012

Life challenge - week 41 - marriage

Hubby and I have been together FOREVER. We were childhood sweethearts. We started dating when I was only 15, have been together 19 years and married for 13. As time goes on we tend to take each other for granted and with our busy lives don't get much time together (and haven't made it a priority to spend time together). This is an area I want to work on. I put it in my goals to spend one night per week together - well it's now October and yep you guessed it - hasn't happened yet. So this week when Deb asked us to look at our marriages I thought now is a great time to focus again on this area.

This week I've tried to be a better partner - listen more, show and tell him I appreciate him and what he does, say yes more.

I was out buying a card just recently and came across one which I thought was perfect for hubby - just to say I love you and I'm thinking of you. So I got that one too. I decided to list the ways I love him and pop them into the card and send it to him.

To to my husband, whom I've tended to take for granted, I would not be who I am without you. I've written 13 reasons why I love you, for the 13 years we have been married (in no particular order):

1.  You are outgoing and can talk to anyone - a characteristic the introvert in me envies

2.  People warm to you/you make them feel listened to

3.  You cook dinner - and are creative in what you make!

4.  You know lots of "stuff" - some useful - some not so  -but you still know it

5.  You can fix things

6.  You are good with directions - where would I be without you (the other side to where I want to be)
7.  You care about our family, the kids look up to you and want to be with you

8.  You are reliable with the kids - I can leave them with you without worrying what will happen, they are  
      happy to be with you

9.   You look after the kids so I can have time for myself for movies, dinners, massages

10. You get on well with my family

11. You set a good example for the kids by working hard, even when you don't enjoy it

12. You are not afraid to ask for help when you need it

13. You love me despite all my faults

Life challenge - week - 40 - negative or toxic people

Wow this one has come at the right time for me (okay we seeing as I'm behind I just grabbed it as it was appropriate right now). Negative or toxic people take a lot of time.

I have (had) a friend who wants a lot of my time, lets call him Joe. We are at different stages in our lives – me with a young family, Joe’s kids are older and more independent. For me, my family comes first, they are young, they need me.

I wanted to be friends, I did like Joe. I would try and keep up to Joe’s messages but would respond when it suited me, not when I received them. But this just caused more issues with follow up messages as to why I hadn’t responded. In short, Joe liked me a lot, wanted to spend a lot of time with me/communicating with me and expected me to feel the same. Joe wasn’t my best friend, but to him I was.

We had been friends for over 7 years. A few times this year Joe decided he needed to get over me and we would stop talking/messaging. Joe knew his feelings were stronger than mine. It would last about a week until I would get another message. And all would be well again. When I would get the messages about “taking a break” I would always thing WOW – it’s all or nothing isn’t it. We have to text/chat etc daily, or we can’t be friends at all.

Can a friendship last where one person feels more strongly about the other? I thought so, I thought I was managing it seems I was wrong.

This friendship has recently (just this week) ended. I’ve been un-friended from FB and have been told I won’t hear from Joe again....I’m not sure how I feel. It was my fault it ended – I know that. I think I feel it’s for the best. I didn’t have the time Joe wanted from me. I constantly felt smothered and Joe felt ignored or neglected. Now Joe feels hurt and resentful. Joe had an unhealthy obsession for me. So I’ve got to come to terms with the fact the friendship was probably toxic for both of us. Time to move on and try and foster my positive friendships.

Monday, 15 October 2012

Life challenge - week 32 - balance

This week Deb has us reflecting on our wheel of life we devise in week 4. Hmmm, I haven't looked at this in a LONG time so I'm curious to see where things are at.
The ones I was most happiest in week 4 were work, environment and relaxation and recreation. These each scored a 4. Work and environment are still 4s. My  job is flexible, interesting work where I'm valued and great company. I'm happy what we are doing for the environment - saving on electricity where we can, recycling, solar electricity etc.  Relaxation and recreation has shifted down from 4 to 3.5. A few of my regular activities (scrap booking workshop, weekly walk with colleague, fortnightly coffee) have stopped due to reasons out of my control. I still have a monthly lunch with one friend, and try to get to the movies with my sister or sister in law when I can. And I still squeeze in as much reading as I can.
I scored 3s for home environment, health, family and finances.
Home environment (which I said includes organisation, cleanliness, tidiness and smooth running of the household) is still a 3. The house is still messy and it still frustrates me. It's tidy fortnightly Sunday nights before our cleaner comes on Mondays, then on Mondays after she has cleaned, and the lasts about 1/2 hour. This relates to the habits and motivation task, where I really want to set aside 15 minutes each day for a quick tidy/declutter. 
Health is a funny one. If I did this back at week 32 I would have put health at 4.5. I was running on the treadmill 4 times per week (I let my gym membership lapse as I wasn't using it enough but running on treadmill instead). I did the city to bay fun run - 12km - in 1 hour and 5 minutes! I was so proud of myself...but then we went to New Zealand 4 days after the run - I was too busy holidaying so didn't get a chance (motivation) to exercise, then no motivation when we got home and then I got sick. So basically that leads to my running motivation gone and hard to get back into it. Hunter's bedtimes have improved (we got some help) - we are still struggling to get him to sleep by 8.30pm - but it's much better than it was. And we still aren't eating as well as we could (not too bad but not great either). I'm therefore going to score it at this particular time as 3.5. So improved from 3 - but I need to get back to where I was prior to the city to bay.
Family has moved from 3 to 3.5. I have scheduled in monthly family days - it's a bit tricky with hubby working most weekends now but we are trying to spend some time together. We were doing Friday night family movies - but channel 99 have changed the program on me and no kids movie Friday night now - will try and record shows though at other times to watch Friday night. I've been spending less time on the computer when home with the kids and more time with the kids. 
Finances I think may need to stay a 3, maybe moved to 3.5. We did manage to have a nice holiday to New Zealand - but I never did get to finishing that budget and our impulse buys are still high. We did sort out spending money for hubby and I so we have our own money to spend on "stuff' which has helped a little. But still room for improvement.
My final area of friendship was scored a 2. I was going to call people more - which I did for a few weeks, and then it seemed to slide. But I'm now scoring this at a 3. We have been trying to catch up with friends more often - and I'm starting to make some more friends close to home through childcare in particular - and Mums I chat to at school - not necessarily friends yet - but we are happy to hang out and have a coffee at a birthday party!

Overall I've had small upward movements. My plan for the next little bit is to get back into my exercise/running.

Life challenge - week 29 - paper and information management real time the Simplify your life challenges are up to week 42. I seem to have slipped and am up to week 29.  I had decided to give it up and stop the tasks because - lets face it - we are all so busy. But then I've decided they are designed to make life simpler and I really want to get back into it - so here I am...13 weeks behind!

Week 29 is paper and information management. I think I have this one mostly under control. I have a storage container on top of my microwave that has 5 trays. They are labelled miscellaneous, junk mail, Bec's mail, Nigel's mail and pens/stationary. Next to the microwave I have 2 magazine files - 1 for Hunter and 1 for Savannah. In her go important school/childcare/activity notes.
Bills get stuck to the pin board after I have checked the due date and put this on the calendar highlighted.

My emails are a little out of control. I'm subscribed to WAY too many blogs - the majority of which I don't read. I'm also subscribed to many useless newsletters etc. I've set up folders and rules and from now on I'm going to check each email as it comes in and decide if I want to stay on the subscription list. I've already unsubscribed to all the daily deal emails - I was getting so many I couldn't read any of them!