The Money Challenge

Money Challenge

I’ve been keeping up with my challenges lately. I checked out a book from the library of personal picture hanging. I’ve been working my behind off at my new school trying to get ready. Wow! I’m exhausted just thinking about it. Who knew it would take 2 hours just to finish a bulletin board? Here’s a picture to show my handiwork. I did two more this size and one gigantic one across the back of my classroom.

Outside my classroom.

Outside my classroom.

As for reading the Bible, I’ve been a little lax on that count. I definitely need to be more faithful.

As I was going over my goals AGAIN, I came across this great pin on pinterest. It’s called the money challenge and what it amounts to is saving a dollar and then adding another dollar every week for 52 weeks (1 year). Basically day 1 is 1 dollar and week 52 is 52 dollars. At the end you end up with 1,378 dollars! This was very appealing to me because, well, who can’t use 1378 dollars? So I thought, “Why couldn’t I do this challenge, but challenge myself to beat it?” So I created myself a little spread sheet and plan to start August 1st. Here’s a copy if you’d like it. Just click on the picture.


So, anyway, I thought that I would try to save as much money as the new year, namely, 2,014 dollars.  I figure if I just add a little bit extra every time, it shouldn’t be that hard.  I know.  You’re wondering, “How much does that amount to extra per week?  Well, I did the math–about 12 dollars extra per week.  I may not make it, but I figure even if I don’t, I’ll be better off than I am now.  Wish me luck!  And here’s some luck for you if you decide to join me!

A Challenge Commences

As you know, I have made my goals for the summer to:

  • Fill a wall with family pictures
  • Lose 30 lbs with  20 lbs gone by the end of summer
  • Read through the Bible looking for those fruits of the spirit to apply to my life.

Have I started on the wall yet?  Well I decided on 2 pictures.  Does that count?  This week I’m going to have my grand children here, so I’d like to get some candid pictures to frame and put up along with the old ones I already have.  I’m looking for quality as well as quantity as they say. 🙂

My new challenge is from my daughter.  She says if I lose 20 lbs by the time school starts she’ll buy me 5 new outfits!  Now that’s some incentive, because I’ve been looking at my clothes lately and they’re rather outdated and raggedy.  I’ve already lost 2.5 lbs this week!  Hey, I’m 1/10 of the way there.  It counts. 🙂

As for reading through the Bible, I’m following along with the Bible study at church, but I don’t think that really counts.  It wasn’t my intent when I made the goal to let church be my guide, so it wouldn’t be honest to say that counts.  Let’s just say I need to work on this goal.

But…let me show you what I have done.  I made this really snazzy bag for the Fourth of July!

One Snazzy Bag!

  Pretty neat right? One Snazzy Bag!

Now I’m 1/10 of the way through with my goal for last summer.  Ha! Ha!

In the beginning, beginning, beginning

I titled this blog this way because I feel like I’m always beginning some self-improvement that never quite gets resolved.  This will be a short beginning post because my daughter and I have decided to work together this summer to lose 20 lbs each.  Now, believe me, she has no where near the pounds to lose that I do, but, like me, she also is on a self-improvement kick.

Tomorrow morning I go to sign papers for my new job.  I’m so excited because now instead of a 90 minute drive, I have a 6 minute drive.  But I digress.  Before I leave for that, I’m going to take a picture of myself in my underwear.  Don’t worry, I won’t gross you out with that picture. 😉.  I’m also going to weigh myself and record both of these things in a journal.  I already have the one set up from my last beginning, so I’ll just continue with that one.  I plan to glue the picture of myself in the journal along with my beginning weight and then take a picture with my weight every week until the summer is over.  I think I need to document and see progress for accountability and encouragement.

That ends my post for this week.  No picture–like I promised, but maybe next week I’ll take a picture of my notebook so you can see what it looks like.  And, I’ll post my progress on this blog weekly too.  If I get to the end and actually lose the 20 lbs, I’ll post a before and after picture then.  That is if I’m not too embarrassed. 🙂

Looking Toward Summer

As summer comes hustling in the door, I find my self looking to make new goals. I think it’s important, even if I don’t completely achieve them, to at least have something to aspire to. Last year’s inspirations, though not completely realized, allowed me to see newness in myself. This year I’ve decided to keep it simple. My goals will be for the next six months, June through December. I can do this. Yes I can!

Goal 1. Lose 30 pounds. I lost 20 pounds last year and have kept it off. The funny thing is, I still am a very fat woman, so people say things like, “Boy you really look nice in plaid.” or “Did you get a new haircut?” What they don’t realize is that what they’re noticing is that I’ve lost 20 pounds. I think it’s kind of funny actually. Here’s my before picture for this year:

Me right now.

Me right now.

Walk following a program to get progressively better until I am beginning to get fit.
Follow the Emeals clean eating plan to eat at home nightly. (Here’s a link if you’d like to try it) Just click on this picture and you’re there. SAVE TIME AND MONEY WITH EMEALS MEAL PLANS
Weigh myself daily. I’ve been going back and forth on this one, but I’ve decided that I can live with the ups and downs if it helps me to see my eating patterns. I plan to track it in an excel sheet. That should give me a nice graph of my week.

Goal 2: Fill this wall with family pictures, old and new. Here’s a picture of the wall now:
blank wall I’ll post the process as I start arranging the photos.

Goal 3: Read through the Bible looking for these things to apply to my life: Love, Joy, Peace, Patience, Kindness, Goodness and Self Control. I think what I really need to do is devote myself to one or two of these things a week and discover what they mean in my life. I know what they mean, but what do I do and how do I show these things as belonging and constant in my personal dealings with people? Do I really show love, joy and peace? I know I’m not always patient or kind or even good. Do we even need to discuss self-control? I think not. lol

These are the goals I have made for myself. They may seem simple, but for me, they are rigorous. After all, what good would it be to attain a goal that wasn’t rigorous? Add a little rigor to your life. There’s no limit to what you can achieve!

Smiles and Sorrows

So much has happened since I last posted.  We left our house in Flower Mound and relocated to Cleburne where my husband’s coffee shop is located.  I love the old house we live in.  It has large rooms and a kitchen where you could set up a dance floor.  The guest room is all set up and is so comfy I think Bob wants to make it into a man cave–Not happening.  It has a nice sized pantry and laundry room.  My bedroom is long with built in shelves and dressers and closets at the end.  One of them is a shoe closet.  Not that I need one.  My 4 pairs of shoes are very lonely in there since it has shoe shelves floor to ceiling.  There is a sewing room at the back of the house that is all windows so that it is bright and sunny with a huge backyard for Bruno.  There is even a very large workshop in the back that is big enough to fit the boat if we wanted that.  All in all I think the house fits our needs very well and we are comfortable there.  Of course, there are some drawbacks.  One bathroom.  One bathroom?  Really?  It’s a big bathroom, but really?  One bathroom?  Enough said.  Everyone knows that this is a drawback–a drawback to the 50’s.  :)  Drawback number 2:  Window units and Dearborn heaters.  I actually kind of enjoy the Dearborn heaters.  They are really warm and Bruno will actually whine if they are off for too long.  But, window units are a pain.  We haven’t lived through a 106 degree summer yet, but I’m not looking forward to it.  The biggest drawback of all is that I work in McKinney–a town 76 miles away.  I leave the house every day at 5:45 and I don’t get home most nights until 7:30 or later.  It just makes me feel tired all the time.  I’m looking in this area, but haven’t found anything yet.  Keep your fingers crossed for me!

Our Dearborn heater which heats our living room.

Our Dearborn heater which heats our living room.

shoe closet

Lonely, lonely, shoes…

Moving has made me go through that old closet and believe me I am down to nubbins.  I need some new clothes!  Most of my t-shirts had holes in them.  I secretly still want to keep them, but am planning to buy a couple and then get rid of a couple a little at a time until they are all replaced.  No, really.  I’ve joined a fabric co-op so that I can get busy on those bags, and I’m holding down the weight I lost during my first challenge.

Now for a few sorrows.  My husband had a heart attack in February and had a quadruple bi-pass on Valentine’s Day.  I never knew this was such a long recovery.  The doctor said 6 months to a year!  He’s doing very well and every day is a little better, but I can’t stand to see him suffering.  The difficult thing about heart surgery is that it creates a change in your body, your emotions and your spirit.  It’s like a metamorphosis  where you’re hoping for a butterfly, but you could get a beetle.  Let me just say, it’s mostly butterfly, but the occasional beetle does crawl out from time to time.  :)  All in all we are walking this walk together and once school is out, I’m going to make new goals.  I believe that the one thing I learned too late was that everything–and I mean everything–needs a plan.  My current plan is to walk through all of these changes in  hope and faith that the path I’m on is the right one.  More specifics to come.

Slow and Steady Wins the Race

Slow and Steady Wins the Race

Ok, so I’ve been kind of a tortoise about this whole closet goal.  But, today, I have begun a slow and steady pace toward, well, beginning it.  :)  Here’s what I did:

  • Washed everything
  • Dried everything (hey, this takes time and is important.)
  • Sorted things into categories
  • Dealt with each category

Here’s how the sorting went:

  1. Clothes that I like and still wear–These included some things I should probably move to another category, but will have to wait until I’m stronger.  I actually shifted back and forth over an old t-shirt that was faded and oh so comfy cozy.  Needless to say, it’s in my drawer now. 🙂
  2. Goodwill–This pile is a pile only a rummage sale junkie could love.  These included anything that doesn’t fit (large or small) and is still in enough good shape that someone might want to wear it (as long as they’re 80 lbs overweight of course.) Looking around, I don’t think I’m alone on that count.  I also included some things my husband and son will never miss but are still hanging onto.  (Don’t tell them)
  3. Trash galore–For this, I actually dragged the big trash can next to my laundry room door and tossed as I went.  It’s trash day today.  There were clothes with holes, shirts with buttons missing or anything with stains that have been there for longer than I can remember.  For some reason, this was the hardest category.  I labored over those holey shirts as if they were really holy.  I told myself, “I can use these when I’m gardening”–yeah right.  And, “I need some old shirts for when I’m cleaning the house.”  Right, like I’m going to search and find an old holey t-shirt to clean the house.  Isn’t that what plain old t-shirts are for?

Anyway, through it all–tortoise or no tortoise–I feel better about the whole thing.  I actually think I can do this again and finish the job by December.  I’ve got 2 months right?  It was kind of freeing actually.  Some of those things I threw away were truly junk–well, all of them were truly junk, I finally have to admit.

So, now that I’m free of all my trash, or treasure for someone else, I can think about losing weight again.  I have hit a wall in that area, but getting rid of all these clothes has renewed my interest in becoming slimmer by Christmas.  It means a whole new wardrobe!  Now that’s incentive!  Besides, slow and steady wins the race, right?

Go ahead, tackle that closet.  You can do it!  You need some new things anyway. 🙂


The Good, the Bad, and the Ugly

Ok, it’s been two weeks and I haven’t posted.  I’m a little off my game, but I have committed to this through the good, the bad and the ugly.  I told my husband last week that I lost weight.  Ok, it was .2 lbs, but hey, I figure it’s still going down.  He didn’t quite see it that way.  He said, “Take off your shorts, you’ll lose another .2 lbs.”  He may be right, but I’m still seeing this as part of the good.  I can zip my jeans without having to monitor the zipper all day, so that .2 lbs means something!  lol

Car and countertop?  check!  I’m doing well with this except when my husband puts his stuff on my side of the countertop or leaves his coffee cup and napkin on the car floor.  We got some talking to do.  So far, I’ve been just pushing his stuff back on his side and taking the trash out myself, but before I become Monster Wife, I better get a handle on it.

Now for the Bad.  I didn’t do my August act of kindness.  :(  I’m planning to change this by doing 2 in September, but I doesn’t change that I missed my August deadline.  I really do want to keep up with my goals and if I let them slip by, how can I say I’m committed.  Well, I AM committed and my report next week will show that.  I also haven’t done my New Testament study for the past month and I need to get back to that.  I miss it.  It’s funny how you can read the New Testament time and time again and it still speaks to you in a different way.  Lastly for the bad, I haven’t started the couch to 5k program yet.  I do walk my dog morning and night, but it’s definitely NOT a 5k.  I feel like I’ve just misstepped on these goals and will be back on track soon, but…

Now for the UGLY.  Still no painting.  Still no bags.  Still no closet work.  Still no excuses.  What more is there to say?  Not much.  Happy Goal Tending!