Wednesday, January 25, 2017

Week One Complete - #NSNation #Sponsored

Last Monday, I officially started Nutrisystem.  I was excited to start my new journey, however
I was also saddened by the loss of my mother, who passed away over the weekend.

I was initially worried about starting a new diet when my life had just been turned upside down,
not to mention all the stress from the viewings and services.

That being said, it was a bit difficult getting all the food in, when I didn't really feel like eating.
I was actually really glad that the first initial week was the "Turbo Takeoff" week, which
required a more restricted, limited diet, even still I struggled to hit my calorie goal daily.

Despite everything I had/have been going through,
I still managed to lose five pounds in a week.
Plus, two and a half inches.

that may not seem like a lot...but every victory, every loss is a win in my book!

Woooohoooo - Cheers to me!

So, what exactly is Turbo Takeoff?

Turbo Takeoff is basically a jumpstart to Nutrisystem's program. 
It's a first week of fast weight loss and everything you need is included.
*grocery staples i.e. vegetables are not included in the kit

You will receive a handy how-to guide book to get you started on the right track.
Every day you will enjoy a delicious breakfast, lunch, and dinner of specially chosen foods
that contain a combination of high protein and good carbs - fiber rich carbs.
Each entrée has been specifically chosen by Nutrisystem's nutrition experts
to help you lose weight fast.

You will also enjoy a refreshing turbo shake and a nutricrush bar, as well, as four servings of vegetables....and don't forget that water, at least 64 ounces (a must have when you are losing weight).

Please note, that it is recommended that you not exercise during the first week,
as you will be on a restricted diet.

What's in that bright red turbo takeoff box???

just take a look...

seven breakfasts, seven lunch items and seven dinners,
as well as turbo shakes and nutricrush bars.

Also included is a handy tracker booklet that you could use to check off all the meals,
water intake and vegetables as you eat them. 
The booklet also listed several tips and recipes to help you get started on the right track.

There are three expert guides which contained 21 tips for winning weight loss,
seven tips for overcoming obstacles, and six super vegetables
that will help you through your weight loss experience. 

Although these pictures (and my starting weight) are rather embarrassing due to the large amount of weight that I have gained (through steroids, meds, stress and such), I thought I would share them in the hopes to inspire others and to also hold myself accountable.

Kind of scary, am I right???

December 28, 2016 ~ 220 pounds

Jan. 16, 2017 ~ 207

I know the numbers don't match up with my five pound weight loss - I originally weighed 220 and lost eight pounds before I started the program....which means when I started NS - I weighed 212.  Therefore, starting weight 212-5 pounds=207.

Starting weight - Jan. 16, 2017 --- 212
                           Jan. 23, 2017 --- 207

**Disclosure ~ I will be receiving access to the website and food in exchange for reviewing the diet plan.  All opinions herein are my own and not influenced by Nutrisystem.   #ad #sponsored

Wednesday, January 18, 2017

Teaching Numbers through Art

You all know how much I love combining art and education and this idea fits that bill perfectly.

Make Number Rubbings Kids love using crayons for just about everything, even things we don't want them to be used on! Put this art streak to good use by introducing them to “rubbings.” They'll work the small muscles in their hands and improve eye-hand coordination, which are both key for writing! Plus, they'll experiment with different surfaces, while they build math skills by practicing their numbers.

What You Need:
  • 10 pieces of blank paper
  • pencil
  • black marker
  • at least 10 objects with lots of different textures (sandpaper, homemade paper, leaves, coins,…etc.)
  • crayons
What You Do:
  1. Draw the numbers 1-10 on blank pieces of paper, with one number per sheet. Make these numbers big, blocked, and outlined so that your child can color the numbers in.
  2. Show your child how she can make a cool design on paper, by “rubbing” a crayon across a piece of paper that’s on top of an unusual texture.
  3. Sit your child down at a table with the stack of numbers and a variety of textures to work with. Explain to her that for each page, she is going to match the number with the correct amount of textures. For example, for the “3” page, she’ll find three objects with different textures to rub under the paper, in order to form a design. She might use: one coin, one leaf, and one comb.
  4. Help your child with the first page. Show her how to lay an item on the table (for example, the sandpaper), and then lay the page with the block number on top of it. Using a bare crayon, turned on its side, show her how to press down while rubbing the crayon on the white paper to form the rubbing.
Easy? Yes. Fun? You bet. But also a great lesson in math. This activity helps preschool kids connect written numbers with the amount of objects they represent. And it has some pre-writing and science experimentation thrown in, too.

Some items used in the above pic includes: foam stickers, sand paper, craft ric rack, and a bath sponge.

*this post was provided by

Wednesday, January 11, 2017

#NSNation #sponsored post

tabula rasa

I'm wiping the slate clean and starting fresh this year.
These last few years have been rough, I feel like I've been doing 20 rounds in a boxing ring,
and like I've been beaten to a bloody pulp.

Within the last few years, I have undergone so much stress - it was labeled chronic.
I felt (well, still feel to some degree) like the weight of the world is on my shoulders.
Despite meditation, relaxation, therapy, exercise, medicine...the works, nothing seemed to help.
The more I tried, the more wound up I became.

All this stress really lowered my immunity, putting me at risk for numerous health issues.
chest pain
major clinical depression
generalized anxiety disorder
panic attacks

you name it, I probably dealt with it to some degree.

It all started when Rich had to have another back surgery a few years ago, I was just starting
school.  The stress from his injuries and surgery, plus the pressure of school did a number on me.

I started praying for peace and also for understanding to gain some insight into how much
my husband was going through with his emotions.  I literally asked God to help me understand...
not that that was a mistake, but I was not prepared for what God had in store.

Initially, it started with chest pain, unexplained.
The doctors said it was most likely due to stress and diagnosed me with costochondritis.
I jokingly laughed and said it was basically a made up name to keep me from thinking I was a nut, especially since many people have never heard of it before.

After about a year of dealing with the constant pain in my chest and doing all the tests to be sure it wasn't something more serious, the pain started to subside to some degree. 
I do still have issues with this now and then, mostly when I start having panic attacks
or experience some other issue with anxiety.

Due to all the stress and mental angst, I still had a low immune level,
this put me at risk for bronchitis and in Dec. '14  I ended up being hospitalized from it.

I was given steroids and antibiotics and eventually released from the hospital, sent home with oxygen tanks, a concentrator, and enough tubing and hoses to wrap around my house three times.

In Nov. '15 - if you remember - was the start of a whole 'nother round and round of bronchitis,
pneumonia, and hospital stays....if you've been a long time reader, than you may remember
that whole scenario from that year.  Over six months of steroids off and on and antibiotics, etc.
and of course, the stress and other issues

I managed to make it through December this past year ('16), without incident
Thank God!

However, January got me.

Ended up getting sick again, I could feel myself getting weaker,
my lungs were hurting.

So I went to the doctor and they said I was literally one step away from the hospital - again.

They prescribed the strongest antibiotics and steroids that they could give me
and urged me to strongly take it easy, and go directly to the hospital if I felt worse.
The next step, would be IV antibiotics and steroids, plus bed rest.

There have been many other numerous issues that have come up through the last few years
too many to mention here.

But the bottom line is...

all the steroids, stress and general junk
has caused me to gain some major weight.

especially belly fat....which is a major issue with those who deal with stress.
All those commercials that talk about belly weight gain and stress
producing the hormone cortisol....yep, they are true.
and it's super hard to lose weight - believe me, I've tried.
I've exercised, I dieted, etc...nothing works.

This all lead me to think about reaching out to Nutrisystem.

Nutrisystem really worked for me - I lost about 40 pounds when I did before.
I had super energy and felt fantastic.

Nutrisystem graciously agreed to sponsor my weight loss program again.
I'm hoping this will be the jump start I need to get back in the game and make some
lifestyle changes - healthy changes that will help me lose the weight and win this battle that I'm fighting.

I will be embarking on this new journey within a week or so and I seriously cannot wait to get started.

If you would like to join me in my journey and cheer me on once again...I would appreciate it
to the depths of my being.

So be prepared to follow along and rediscover Nutrisystem with me.

Here we go.....

**Disclosure ~ I will be receiving access to the website and food in exchange for reviewing the diet plan.  All opinions herein are my own and not influenced by Nutrisystem.   #ad #sponsored