Archive for March 2012

Date Night: Sips ‘n Strokes

With a baby on the way (five and a half months to go and counting), we know that our Date Nights are going to be limited. Granted, we have parents who will jump at the chance to baby sit for us, but we know that, like every other couple since the beginning of time, baby equals less couple time.

As a result, Tina and I try to go on a date night every week, even if it something as simple as just packing up our dinner and going out for a picnic.

Our date nights sometimes just consist of going to a “nice” restaurant. (I should note that for us, a nice restaurant is typically just one that has cloth napkins. I’m not talking gourmet dining – think more Ruby Tuesday with a coupon. Hey, we’re trying to be frugal, too!)

But last night, we did something we’ve never done before.

We went to Sips ‘n Strokes.

Sips ‘n Strokes is basically a painting studio where everyone is painting the same thing, guided by an instructor. Oh, and the Sips refers to the fact that you can bring in your own alcohol and get plastered while you are painting.

I’m not much of a drinker. Tina is pregnant (but otherwise could drink me under the table). As a result, we were more into the painting than the drinking last night.

This was so much fun! The painting last night was a bit of a musical abstract, and after three hours, this is what Tina and I ended up with. We could not be more pleased!

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March Foodie Pen Pal Reveal

End of the month and another foodie pen pal post!

This month, I sent a package to Lindsay at You can read about what I sent here.

I received a package from Debbie at Accidently Delish.

Unfortunately, the USPS did not feel like being nice to me this month, and my package arrived a little more beat up than either Debbie or I was expecting. 🙁

Debbie sent me some homemade trail max and chocolate covered peanuts that, alas, did not survive the trip. *sigh* And I really like chocolate covered peanuts, too!

But oh well. No use crying over what didn’t make the trip. Let’s focus on what did survive!

I got a very lovely note… (stained orange from the rogue trail mix, I’m afraid)

Some very tasty bars (the Wolfberry was quite good), a package of chocolate peanut butter Justin’s nut butter (very good), and my favorite, hot salsa! Debbie very thoughtfully asked if I minded spicy, and my reply was the spicier the better. This stuff is hot – but awesome!

If you would like to participate in Foodie Pen Pals for April, read below and visit here to sign up!

-On the 5th of every month, you will receive your penpal pairing via email. It will be your responsibility to contact your penpal and get their mailing address and any other information you might need like allergies or dietary restrictions.
-You will have until the 15th of the month to put your box of goodies in the mail. On the last day of the month, you will post about the goodies you received from your penpal!
-The boxes are to be filled with fun foodie things, local food items or even homemade treats! The spending limit is $15. The box must also include something written. This can be anything from a note explaining what’s in the box, to a fun recipe…use your imagination!
-You are responsible for figuring out the best way to ship your items depending on their size and how fragile they are. (Don’t forget about flat rate boxes!)
-Foodie Penpals is open to blog readers as well as bloggers. If you’re a reader and you get paired with a blogger, you are to write a short guest post for your penpal to post on their blog about what you received. If two readers are paired together, neither needs to worry about writing a post for that month.
-Foodie Penplas is open to US & Canadian residents. Please note, Canadian Residents will be paired with other Canadians only. We’ve determined things might get too slow and backed up if we’re trying to send foods through customs across the border from US to Canada and vice versa.

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Good Rule #2 – Think Through the Workout

I have a match-up of videos to share about, but I’ll do that tomorrow. Instead, I had a burst of knowledge appear in my head today, and I have to share it. It helped me out immensely today; I hope it will help me out in the future, and if it helped me out, it might help someone else out, too.

The new rule I’ve found?

Think through the workout.

I came home from work exhausted. Not mentally but physically.

Mentally I was fine, but I was tired.

I came very close to just counting my calories for the day, sitting at my desk and working on my homework, and going to bed. No exercise.

But then I stopped and thought, “Imagine how good you will feel on Monday if you step on the scale and it shows another two pound loss.”

“Imagine how good you would feel if you just decided to put on your sneakers, strap on your heart rate monitor, and worked out for an hour.”

I thought through my workout.

By which I mean… I ignored the workout itself, and I focused on the good that would come from it.

The first five minutes were a little tough, but before I knew it, fifty minutes had passed, I completed one of my bracket’s videos, and my exercise for the day was finished.

Next time I am struggling to get the motivation to workout, I’m going to focus on the small immediate good that will come from my workout.

Picturing myself thin at 180 doesn’t always work. That’s too far away, and I’ve never been there, so I can’t visualize it.

But picturing myself standing on the scale Monday morning and seeing a 2 pound loss… that’s easy. I’ve done that before.

And with today’s workout done, I’m one step closer to doing it again.

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A Lentils Weigh-In

If you watched my vlog last night, then you’ll know that I said I forgot to weigh-in but I am trying to eat more calories in an attempt to lose weight.

Crazy, right?

Well, apparently, eating between 1500 and 2200 calories, for a guy of my size, weight, age, and exercise frequency, was not enough. An online BMR calculator revealed that I need to eat around 3,100 calories to lose weight. So that’s what I did, for the past week, even if it felt weird. Awkward. Wrong. Almost like I was cheating, even, as I ate more.

How did my body respond?

My body loved it.

I feel better. My skin is even better, my joints don’t ache nearly as much, and my hunger, as expected, has dropped. How did I do?

March 27, 2012
Weight: 370.2
Change from Last Week: -2.4 pounds
Change from All-Time Highest: -32.6 pounds

Woo hoo! That’s the best loss I’ve had in a while, AND that includes not doing actual cardio or weight lifting (just lots of physical activity) for three days.

There is one thing that I want to change, though, and that is the source of my calories. I’ll admit that a few of my calories were obtained in the form of Girl Scout Cookies. I still believe that the occasional splurge is fine, but when 160 of my calories were obtained, every day, from 4 Thin Mints, well… that’s not as okay.

I want to get my calories from good, healthy sources. And that is why this is a lentil weigh-in.

I’ve never been a fan of beans. I think they are gross, and at best, I tolerate them in dishes for their health benefits. I’ve recently discovered lentils, however, and I’m in love. They are tasty, healthy, and cheap (the latter is great for someone trying to save money). A cup of cooked lentils has 230 calories, so for someone trying to up his calorie intake while eating healthy foods, lentils are a great way to go.

Yay for extra calories! I never saw this one coming.

Watch out 360s. I’m coming for you next week.

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Night of the Living Vlog

I just bought a new webcam. I want to start vlogging again.

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12-31-13 - 412.0
1-3-14 - 407.0 (-5.0 pounds total)