Tuesday, March 26, 2013

Determination

That's the word of the day. I am, however, determined to reach my goal size by the end of the year. I'm also determined to pay off this credit card bill by the end of the year. Once I do that, I'll be able to breathe a little easier. For the most part I've been on top of paying my bills so I'm on track. I'm also determined to get rid of some of these self destructive habits.

Thanks to my home girl Roxy for posting this.
For the month of April I can start with:

1 - Doubting Yourself. While I don't doubt myself often, there are the occasional times I do. So I'm going to eliminate that.

3 - Fear of Failure. This goes hand in hand with #1 I think. Again not something I do often. I would say my biggest fear of "failure" would be as a mother. I'm not even close to parenthood yet, but I don't want to turn out like my mother. It's always my biggest fear. But I intend to be nothing like her, and I'm going to work my damnedest not be a better parent than she was.

8 - Comfort Eating. I am guilty of this to the extreme. I never used to be, so I have no idea how/when/why I started. Nonetheless I have to break this nasty habit. Find other ways to deal with my stress and emotions. I'll definitely try to sub exercise for eating.

9. Laziness. See #11 & 13 below.

10 - Negative Self Talk. Goes hand in hand with #1. I don't loathe myself (most days) but I do criticize myself sometimes and when you're having conversations with yourself it's hard to stay positive. LOL especially when it's concerning other bad habits.

11 - Procrastination. Ugh this is a big one. Who doesn't procrastinate? Unless you have severe OCD (kidding!) But procrastination is the devil in disguise and I will beat it. I'm sure all these To Do lists I have all over the place can get dusted off and taken care of.

13 - Anything Excessive. It speaks for itself. I can cut out excessive eating, drinking, complaining, laziness.... The list goes on. You get the point.

While I should get rid of all of these habits, I'm human and it's not going to happen overnight. I can focus on a few that will help me towards my professional growth and my weight loss journey. The rest will come in time. There are also a few I don't really have to work on because I've already accomplished it, or never was an issue for me.

4 - Destructive Relationships. I learned to let that one go a long time ago. If you're not helping me grow and move forward, then you're holding me back. Don't need it.

12 - Fear of Success. Never had this fear. Some people do. I get it.

14. People Pleasing. See below #15.

15. Putting Others Needs Before Your Own. This goes with #14. There are times when you have to do it - work, children, spouse. But it's all to an extent. At the end of the day you have to think about yourself. (Children excluded.) For the most part I don't do this. I stopped awhile ago. I'm pretty selfish as a lot of people will tell you, the Mister knows this first hand. But I'm not a complete bitch. I have my moments too. It took me awhile to learn not to be a puppy trying to seek approval from everyone. I like the balance I have achieved and don't see the need to change it. Just find your balance. Whatever works for you, no one is the same.

I'm sure you can tell the ones I left off are going to be the hardest for me, but I'm going to do it. Need to rid myself of the negativity. Can't let anyone or anything bring me down. There are so many good things in the works right now. God willing, I can end this year on a much better note than I did last year.

Any bad habits you need to break?
-L


Thursday, March 21, 2013

Different Type of Giveaway?

Yes. Coming soon. I am thinking about doing another giveaway, but I may do it a little different. I know some people have issues taking clothes/shoes/etc from other people, regardless if its brand new or not. I personally have no shame. If its free and I like it, why not? I've gone to thrift stores before and don't mind it. Anyway.. I want to giveaway some of my shoes/accessories that I've had for a bit and don't wear. Since my barrage of ankle and foot injuries, I (sadly) can't wear any of my heels anymore ::cue violins:: Many of them are *BRAND* spanking new, just without the boxes. I feel weird about putting my club/freakum heels in the donation boxes, or dropping them off at Salvation Army. So this is where you guys come in. I want to do a shoe giveaway (only the new, never worn shoes of course) and in turn, I want to see the winners do an OOTD post via IG or Twitter, so I can see my babies in action. Not 100% sure how this is going to work out, but its an idea. Most of them will be size 8.5 - 9 and probably 3" and up.

Feedback?
-L

Sunday, March 17, 2013

Get to Stepping!

Since my last post, I am proud to say, I have gotten better at not buying anything else. Just the necessities! Yay me :) I have also 100% committed myself to Hot Yoga, even increasing from the 60 min class to the 90 min one. Whooooo it's a big difference. But so worth it! I feel amazing after. Stress free and fully worked out. I have to be careful not to counteract it with junk and laziness, but for the most part I've been pretty good about it. Just not today. Its a lazy Sunday and I'm finding myself a little peckish. The Mister was raising his eyebrows at me and told me to slow my roll. So I am. I'll be working out in a little bit, I promise! And the main thing that's also been helping me, and I'm sure my Instagram followers are tired of me posting about it (sorry guys!) is monitoring my steps.

Yep, I'm walking around and counting my footsteps. Just not with a pedometer. I've been using this app on my iPhone called Moves. I like it because its so simple and it shows where I've been throughout the day. There are no extra features or buttons taking up screen space. It's simplicity at its best, without sacrificing function. It can also tell the difference between walking, running, and cycling, though I have yet to test that out. I will in the near future and I will let you know. I love it though, and it   doesn't force you into doing anything extra. Personally though, I look back at the amount of steps each day and compete with myself. LOL I know it sounds silly, but I do! I'm like "dag why didn't I walk as much as yesterday? What was I doing? I gotta do better tomorrow." It motivates me to be a little more active and walk around instead of taking the shortcuts. 

All in all I know there's more that I can do, but it's about the baby steps. I have to schedule my time better and be more mindful of what I eat. Less carbs, more veggies (especially greens) and be more focused. The fact that some of my coworkers are also on the health kick helps me because I feel guilty sneaking snacks or eating a less than amazing healthy lunch. Slowly, but surely, I will get there. I'm proud of myself to dropping a few lbs and keeping them off. It won't happen overnight, no matter how much I wish it did...

Stay healthy!
-L

Wednesday, March 13, 2013

No Will Power

I broke my No Buy already. Yea I'm weak, I know it. In my defense, the sales were too good to pass up. I shoulda known better than to go to Target during my No Buy. LOL I will try to refrain from shopping for the rest of the month and try again in April. Realistically April 1st is the date to look forward to where things should fall into place for me. *fingers crossed* Not that I should have any excuses. But to be fair, I still put money in savings, paid more than my share on my bills and still had quite a bit of breathing room. I didn't go broke splurging it all on one check like I do sometimes. It's all about balancing.

And while I need to save a little more, I'm still content with what I bought. It wasn't anything super unnecessary. It was stuff I needed and some that I wanted that I will use and not toss to the side. One pair of sneakers because I have no casual footwear besides my gym sneakers. I kept meaning to buy them I just didn't want to pay jacked up prices. I saw them on sale, took it as a sign and bought them. With my luck if I would have waited, I would have never gotten them. That's always the story. The stuff in Target? That was a little unnecessary, but again the sale prices were really REALLY too good to say no to. I know for next time to stay away from Target during a No Buy session.

All in all I'm not feeling too guilty or bad about it. I could have done worse. I owned up to it and didn't try to hide it. So now you all know I cheated, 'cause I fessed up. On the plus side, some of the stuff I got at Target will make for good future posts. So it's more of an investment ;-)

BUT I'm still going well with my fitness and diet. Loving the Hot Yoga and the way it makes me feel. Working on my core, and general well being. Summer is around the corner!

Stay tuned!
-L

Sunday, March 10, 2013

Garnier Fructis Triple Nutrition Miracle Dry Oil



I got this from BzzAgent and was excited to try it out. It boasts:
  • Combines three weightless oils – olive, avocado and shea – to transform dry hair and skin
  • Made for everyday use on your hair, body and face
  • Instantly absorbs in a touch with no oily residue
  • Can be used on damp or dry hair

I can attest to a few, but not all of these claims. Upon reading the back of the bottle, I was a little disappointed to see that it was not all natural, nor were shea, olive, and avocado the most prominent ingredients, or the only oils. Still I was ready to give it a try. It was still pretty light weight, and as mentioned in their claims, it did absorb pretty quickly with little residue on my hands. (I found the spray to be too uncontrollable and concentrated the oil in some areas. It was also not as easy to spread once sprayed. It was way easier to spray on my hands and then rub in my hair.) I used it both on wet/damp hair and dry hair. I did notice it did a better job of lasting on my wet/damp hair than on dry hair. I guess my hair was just really thirsty when it was dry!

I did not use this on my skin, as I am sensitive and a little wary of the things I use on my skin, my face especially. That being said, I did do a trial run on my legs and it was alright. A little greasy, maybe because I put too much. I didn't break out or have any adverse reactions to it, but I more prefer lotion to oil for my skin. There is a scent to this that was a little too much for me, but after rubbing on my legs, the scent faded out pretty quickly. It is less noticeable when I use it in my hair. I have to say after reading Swa-Rai's post about this, I had to give it another try on my skin. I started using it sparingly on my face and I admit - I like it. It really is great to travel with as well. It sure got the job done on my Easter weekend. Hair, skin, and face - I was covered thanks to this bad boy. Just shows that you can't always shoot things down on the first try.

I didn't change anything in my hair routine except for this oil. I switched out my jojoba/coconut oil mix for this Garnier Miracle Dry Oil and it worked really well. My hair was really shiny and smooth, even after 3 days (I only applied once during that time.) Normally with my jojoba/coconut mix I have to apply again (to the ends) after the second day, and it tends to get a little stiff if I over do it. I was impressed with the way the Garnier made my hair softer and more manageable after a few uses. I will add this to my rotation. As for it being multipurpose... I suppose for when I'm traveling and can't bring too many products with me, this would work. (See the edit above. I loved it for traveling. Less products to carry and worry about.) I'm still really iffy about using it on my face. But we'll see, maybe a light application with a cotton ball may be alright. I'll have to get back to you on that one. Quick spray on my hands, rub it in and light pat down on my face is just perfect. No greasy mess and no dry spots. Just be careful around the eye area. I used it on my lids and that was a no-no. They were super greasy before the day was out.

Overall this is worth trying out. If they switched the spray to a better one, or a pump that would make it all the better. As for being 100% natural, I'm sure they won't go that route, but if you really want something natural, you can just use the oils by themselves. I won't switch off my jojoba/coconut oil mix completely, but I will definitely throw this in the mix. The fact this is more readily available in major drug stores like CVS, Duane Reade, Walgreens, etc is a plus, and it's not terribly expensive. Target and Walmart also carry it, so you can get it almost anywhere you shop for your beauty needs. It's good for the budget conscious that don't want to sacrifice quality.

***I was not paid for the review. The product was sent to me for free to evaluate and provide feedback.***

Wednesday, March 6, 2013

Country Girl?

Ha it has finally happened. After all the years of me being so against it, I have embraced Country Music. And I love it. Now I'm not talking Taylor Swift (sorry hun!) But Blake Shelton, Miranda Lambert, Lady Antebellum, The Band Perry, Eli Young Band, Kenny Chesney and everyone else that's on the various Country Radio stations on Pandora. I can also attribute some of my Country music interest to ABC's TV Show Nashville. I didn't expect to like it as I'm not big on Hayden P, but it caught my interest and it's on my "Must Watch List." And because the Mister turned me onto Country music a few years ago and I didn't believe him til now. I'm sure there's plenty of die hard Country fans that dislike the show, but sue me! I found it interesting. It's a good drama and the music makes it better.

I actually like this song from Nashville and this one.

I'm far from becoming a die hard Country fan (no disrespect to those who are) but in widening my range of musical tastes, I embrace Country music and appreciate it. I do want to go to a Country concert sometime soon. I can only imagine in person its even better. There's just something so relate-able to these Country artists. Their songs have meaning, and substance. Something that can't be said about some of the upcoming artists over the years. It's what's made me turn off the radio and stick to the oldie but goodies. I can't stand some of the things out there they call "music" especially not within the Hip Hop genre. To me that needs a revival, revolution. Something to bring it back to what it was. For now, Country is soothing my soul and I'm enjoying my moment with it.



-L

Monday, March 4, 2013

Love Companies Like This!

Not too long ago I finally sat down and wrote to Quaker about their Blueberries and Cream Instant Oatmeal. It was a spoof almost, and I really didn't expect them to write back. No one person can be this dedicated to oatmeal. But I guess I was wrong, because they did humor me with a response!

Here's what I wrote, and their response:

"Is there anyway to get a box full of only blueberries and cream? It pains me to have to buy boxes and boxes of the fruit and cream variety pack, only to eat the 2 lonely packets of blueberries and cream, and then let the other flavors sit there before I reluctantly eat them. My mother for years has always given me peaches and cream, strawberries and cream, and maple brown sugar. I cringe when seeing these flavors, and for awhile swore of oatmeal. Blueberries and cream is refreshing for me, and has brought me back to the goodness of Quaker oatmeal. I would really love an all blueberry box. It's not the same without it. Please consider this! I would gladly buy a box, or two, or a whole case... Even if it was a specialty item, or limited edition. "

"Thanks for the inquiry regarding your interest in our Instant Quaker Oatmeal Blueberries & Cream, and how you really enjoy only that flavor in the Variety Pack. I'm sorry to say that we don't have the facility to process individual orders. I'll be glad to let the sales and marketing team know of your interest in buying the Blueberries & Cream in a separate package. 

I'd like you to know that many years ago our Blueberries & Cream flavor was available in a box by itself, but due to low sales, it was discontinued as a separate item. Choosing product packaging is a complex issue. Many factors such as safety, quality, shelf-life, package strength, and consumer preference determine which container is most suitable. From time to time, the packaging of our products is reevaluated. It is possible that this product might someday be available in the type and size package you have indicated.

Thank you for your business, Lori-Ann. I hope you’ll continue to select and enjoy our products for many years to come. After all, we know you have a choice of brands and always appreciate your choosing ours."

Hilton
Quaker Consumer Relations
A Division of PepsiCo
Ref# 028078168A

Oats consume less fertilizer from the soil in which they're grown. When less fertilizer is used, the risk of ground and surface water contamination due to run-off is greatly reduced.

=============================================


I think its absolutely wonderful that someone took the time out to respond to my inquiry. I thought it was a good response, not degrading or condescending. I honestly felt like they valued me as a customer. This makes me want to stay loyal to Quaker

I wish more companies were like this! Customer service is everything. But kudos to them.

-L