Tuesday, March 27, 2012

a little bit of healthy eating

As of this morning, I am down 19 lbs!  That has happened over almost 2 months.  It has taken some work on my part in order to shed those unwanted pounds.  And, I am going to give some credit to Pinterest.  You can always count on Pinterest.

I have turned to that site in order to find healthier choices when I am picking out food.  I have come across a few new recipes that seems pretty healthy and tasty.  A winning combo.  So, I wanted to share.

Yesterday I made a dip for fruit, mainly for the girls.  It just took a mixture of yogurt and nutella.  Pair that up with some strawberries, and that is a decent snack. In the Pinterest link, it calls for greek yogurt.  But, you know I am not going to find that.  I just used regular, plain yogurt.

I have been looking for things I can make for lunch.  I came across this unconventional avocado chicken salad recipe.  It was a major success!  Very tasty!

Working out everyday isn't the hard part of losing weight.  I think making smart choices in the foods I eat is the hardest part.  Having good food and making it seem like I am not missing out on anything is what I am focusing on.

Hope you like these as much as I did.  Oh, and last night I made baked chicken fajitas (no picture, sorry!) and they were really good.  Of course, I would have liked them even more with some sour cream, cheese, and lettuce.  But, I am cutting back.  Even without those extra toppings, they were pretty good.  And, pretty low in fat and calories!


Monday, March 26, 2012

a little gift to myself

What is wrong giving yourself a gift?  I can't think of anything wrong with it.  That is why, several months ago, I signed up for Joy the Baker's "ENJOY" subscription.  (This link takes you to the January sign-up.  I assume she will have another sign-up soon, since the gifts have been received for the most current sign-up.  And, you can see on this link what I got in my first package.)

I can tell you that I was more than thrilled to see that there was an International option!  You just don't see that often.  It was only $5 more than the normal one, for the States!  So, for a total of $30, every 3 months, I get a little gift in the mail.  Exciting!

The other day I got the package slip from my mail boy.  Jorge came home with a box from King Arthur Flour.  I could tell before I even opened it that it would be pretty awesome! 

I opened the box to find a box inside full of goodies! Yay! 

Included was a big bag of double-dutch dark cocoa, a bag of chocolate sprinkles, cupcake lines (cute ones!), espresso powder, a silicon bowl scrapper, and a $10 gift card to use at King Arthur Flour!

Check out all the goodies!

Also, a recipe card was included.  Here is the front of it.

 Here is the back.

In another 3 months I will be getting another surprise!  Can't wait!  I just love getting stuff in the mail.  And, the fact that they are surprises, even better!  I just signed up through Paypal and it automatically takes out $30 before the packages are sent.  You can always cancel at anytime.  But, I can't see myself doing that anytime soon!

Just thought I would share, in case any of you other friends want to get in on the action. And, all you "international" friends, you can join too!

Friday, March 23, 2012

time flies

Wow!  It has been a couple weeks since I last posted.  It really doesn't seem like that long ago.  Nothing spectacular has been going on.

We did go to a birthday party last weekend and the girls got a chance to ride some ponies.  And, there was plenty of really nice grass to run around in. 

I've been busy working out.  As of Monday, I have lost 15 lbs in a little over 6 weeks.  I got a bit carried away with weighing myself, so I am only weighing myself on Sundays now.  It is torture. I want to know each day, but there were a few days when my weight went back up and that made me mad!  So, only once a week now.

We are still doing the school thing.  We did relax and weren't doing it very regularly for a few weeks.  But, now we are back into the swing of things.  I guess that is another added benefit of homeschooling.  You can decided your own schedule.  I am leaning more towards a year long school year.  So, I will adjust my schedule accordingly for the next school year. 

But, here are some pictures of the girls doing some of their school work today.  Just more number recognition and practing writing the numbers.  We are still struggling with letters that look similar.  But, I guess that is to be expected.

Have a great weekend, everyone!

Saturday, March 10, 2012

this is why I started this blog

When I first started this blog, 3 1/2 years ago, I did it for a few reasons.  One, I wanted to have a place where friends and family could read about my experiences with living in Mexico.  And, two, I wanted to see if my views of life and my "situation" would change over time.

I never thought my opinions of living in Mexico would change.  And, I'm not a closed-minded person, but thought that my life was pretty much wrecked when I had to close up shop in Indy and move to some small town in the middle of Mexico.  As I have admitted, I didn't do it without my fair share of kicking and screaming.

I used to look at these pictures of the house we had just had built and get so upset.  Like a life was stolen from me.  But, now, I can look at them and it doesn't affect me at all.  I just remember them fondly.  And, I think one day, we can just do it all over again, if we choose.

So, sitting here today, after reading a friend's blog post, where she lists my blog and a description of it on her blog (She cracks me up!), I realized that my life has become "normal".  She wrote:

"http://bigvz.blogspot.com/ Valarie is the Martha Stewart of my blogging world. She homeschools, she remodels, she crafts, she cooks. And than she shares all of that with the rest of us. My husband still hasn't forgiven her for giving me the idea to paint our house. "

I have felt OK for quite some time, but I really don't think about it that much.  I guess with all my daily tasks, and all the other things that keep me busy, I just don't think about stuff like I used to.  I equated happiness, success, and a full life to living in the States.  And, while I do want to move back when we are allowed, I am totally fine living here in Mexico and I don't view the States as my only means of happiness.

I used to focus on what happened to us instead of getting past it.  Immigration has been a tornado for many people.  And, I think that being able to brush yourself off, and not dwelling on it is the only way to get your life back.  It might not be the life you were planning.  But, when does that ever happen?

When February 5th of this year came around, I didn't even remember that the day was sort of significant.  I just overlooked it.  February 5, 2008 was when Jorge was barred for 10 years from the US.  I used to dwell on that day as well as the day that I moved down here.  Sort of like an anniversary.  But, I don't anymore.  I don't think that should rule my life.  That is why I don't ever talk about immigration on this blog.  I have long moved on and started living again.

Basically, I just thought it was kind of neat, that in a list of blogs that Jennifer reads, when putting a description to mine, the words "Mexico" and "immigration" are not even a thought.  It is great.  And it loops back around to why I started this blog in the first place.  I have changed and it feels really good.

Now, of course, this is my journey. Jorge still feels the pangs when he sees the pictures of our house in Indy.  In a situation where I thought I would be the one most affected, he actually seems to have it much harder.  But, one of these days, I hope all that will turn around.  And, I try to make it as easy on him as possible.  As far as me, I am doing OK!

Tuesday, March 06, 2012

happy 4th birthday, Emily!

Today Emily turns 4 years old!  We had her party on Saturday.  Here are some pictures from the party.

Bella posing with the birthday girl!

As you can see, above Emily is wearing a yellow shirt.  Her Uncle Luis and Aunt Ariana gave Emily her present when they got here.  It was the Superman shirt and pants she is wearing in the below pictures.  Obviously, those were a big hit!

Here she is opening her Spiderman mask.

Looks like she is happy with it!

She got the game Operation.

Opening her present, Lotsa, from Toy Story 3.

I wasn't sure if she would like him.  But, as you see below, she was ecstatic!

Still loving on Lotsa.

Smiling for someone else's camera.

She got a little, blue purse from Mamaw and Papaw. Blue is Emily's favorite color.

Looks like she likes it!

And, a Toy Story 3 color book with markers.

And, I will personally thank Mamaw and Papaw for this gift.  Headphones!  When Emily plays with her LeapPad, she loves the volume to be as loud as possible.  Now she can enjoy the volume all to herself!

In her Spiderman mask.

I totally forgot to take a picture with candles on the cupcake.  Shame on me!  So, tonight I will get that shot.  Not too bad since today is actually her birthday.

Happy Birthday, Emily!