Theme Thursday – Memories

This theme is really fitting for today. I have sort of studied for my exam this morning. I’ve spent a lot of time reading and going over things but I have gone without my normal memorization of things. It seems like this section of my Nutrition and Disease course was all covered in past courses I took. This has flooded me with memories of more carefree times (As I try to sneak studying during nap time I wish I had known what my future would bring!), classmates long forgotten, assignments that I wish I had kept and just how much learning I have done in my lifetime. This morning I pulled out this baby.

photo (23)This pencil case was made for me in High School by my friend Connie. We exchanged gifts every year. We used the same bag to wrap the gifts in. I love this pencil case. I’m not even a big fan of animal print but it was made with love by her hands. I miss Connie. Connie if you’re out there say hi! This pencil case has seen me through honour roll in High School, a BSc.,  a brief stint studying for teaching assistant, Ecosystem Management Diploma and Teacher’s College. Not to mention a couple jobs and now a Nutrition course on my journey to become a Lactation Consultant. This is one smart pencil case! When I dug it out this morning I found a memory stick in it. Exploring it was a wealth of treasures as well. I’m pretty sure I stole it from my in laws (Hi guys! Sorry!). It has some old tax files on it but it also had a small collection of photos. We were just babies!

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Look at all the hair! (Don’t kill me for posting this J!)

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I don’t remember seeing this picture before. That’s my husband and I dancing our first dance. I love that dress! I loved that day! I still love that man!

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Wish me luck! Cross your fingers that my memories remain!

 

Theme Thursday – Lights

The midnight oil has been burning in this house. Not because I’m up sewing fantastic things. I so wish that was the cause. I’m a procrastinator by nature and I have a course to finish including two assignments. I need to be done by next Friday so I’ve had the lights on late and very early trying to get everything done and pass this course. Please remind me that I suck at independent learning courses if I try to sign up for a new course. I need more structure.  The other thing that sucks is that it is a nutrition course. Normally when I study I grab a bag of double stuffed oreos to reward myself for reaching goals. I can’t even go there. I’m reading about how everything we eat is going to kill me. So while you are sleeping soundly in your bed with no lights on think of me up late, all the lights on, nibbling on some celery.

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Theme Thursday – Flat

On here I don’t talk a lot about myself beyond my kids, my love of fabric and sometimes my love of food. So today is a special glimpse into me. I know most of my blog followers personally so some have already seen this but other’s have no clue about me. I’ve always struggled with my weight. Even when I was super skinny and should have not had to worry about anything I still saw myself as fat because my bone structure was bigger than most of my friends. If only I was as skinny as I was the first time I thought I was fat! What I would give to have a flat stomach again.

Shortly after my youngest was born I struggled with life. Things weren’t going well to say the least. I was overwhelmed with 2 kids, on my own a lot of the time, had one child who was sickly and I was suffering from postpartum depression. I was encouraged by my doctor and other’s in my life to get active again. I joined the gym around the corner and man has it changed my life. When I first started I was more than discouraged. I cried in the middle of classes because I couldn’t do the simplest things. Having 2 babies in a short amount of time ruined me. I had no abs, no core strength and no endurance. I wasn’t active during my pregnancies beyond daily life.  I think the only things that kept me going were the amazing encouraging ladies at the gym and my husband’s disbelief that I would keep going (he likes to play on my stubborn streak which takes on challenges). I kept plugging  away. I felt like I was making progress and I was. I was slowly gaining strength and endurance and feeling a bit more normal.

In September they announced a new program that would be run in small groups called Metabolic Training. I had no clue what it was or what it entail but I signed up. I asked the instructor (my kettle belle teacher) if she thought I could handle it and she said “Absolutely!”. So starting October 1st I met up with 3 other amazing ladies, our trainer 3 times a week for 4 weeks at a time and I have changed my life!  This is me on day one of our training.
IMG_6740 (1)I totally thought I was looking good there! And I probably did look amazing compared to where I started in April. I wish I had taken pictures back then. I took pictures every week or two to show me my results. I am so glad I did! So this is me after 2 months.

IMG_0300 (1)HUGE CHANGES! But here is the kicker. I had lost like 12″ overall but I hadn’t lost any weight. Not one pound. I cried often about this. I had cleaned up my eating a bit but didn’t deprive myself. Then I went 2 more months and this is how I looked.

IMG_1076Even more changes! AND I was down 4 lbs. 4 lbs! Only 4lbs! I lost 17″ overall and my scale hasn’t budged much at all. So I wanted to make this post to encourage other women (and men) that our scales lie or at least don’t tell the whole story. If I hadn’t been taking these photos I would have quit long ago. I let that scale determine my worth for far too long. I have made huge changes and I will continue my journey at my gym but I refuse to let my scale tell me anything any more. I can’t give it up completely but I no longer let that number tell me that I’m fat or skinny or anything.  Muscle weighs way more than fat. I’ve lost a lot of fat and gained a lot of muscle and I am stronger than I have ever been in my life. See those numbers on those photos? It’s just a number. I don’t care who knows it any more. That number does not define me.

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Here is another amazing part of my journey. When I signed up for the training I didn’t really think I could do it. I thought that I would be doing half of what everyone else was doing. I had significant back issues that I thought would limit me. My trainer admitted that even though she said I could absolutely do this she had her doubts. I have been able to work through it all and exceed all expectations that I had for myself and what my trainer had for me. This has taught me not to put limits on myself. Sometimes you just have to jump in and see where life takes you. I’m well on my way to my flat stomach again. Once I get there this time I’m going to enjoy it. I’m going to remember that my flat tummy housed, nurtured and expanded to grow two beautiful babies.  I’m going to remember that I worked my ass off to get it back. I’m going to remember that I’m so lucky to have so many encouraging and amazing women in my life at my gym The Social Club. I’m going to remember that even though she had her doubts that my trainer Paula Reid chose to encourage me to keep going to see where my limits were and that she believed in me enough to keep pushing me when I said I couldn’t do any more.

So whoever you are, wherever you are on your fitness journey stop letting your scale define you. I’m so unathletic, so uncoordinated and so lazy it has always been a joke. If I can do this any one can.

 

 

12 in 12 – January

Better late than never right? Sooo I finished 3 quilts in January. Quilt simple quilts. I only have pictures of one so far. I’m not sure any quilts will be done in February. I suck at this! hahaha. I have 2 assignments and an exam to write. I may have procrastinated a little too long this time. Anyway here is the elk quilt. I love it. It’s organic cotton front and back with a bamboo batting. LuxuriousIMG_8842 IMG_8844 IMG_8843 IMG_8840 IMG_8839

What did you get done in January?

 

Block Tuesday – Catching up!

I’m totally behind on posting my blocks. I’ve been doing them but somehow forget to post them. So here is week 4, 5 &6.

Week 4:

I had a larger piece of some of my favourite fabric so I wanted to showcase it. I love the fabric on the outsides of this block.

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Since I still had extra I did the inversion of the block too.

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Week 5:

This week I went a bit crazy. I had no plan. I just started sewing and cutting and sewing and cutting and I love it.

IMG_8819It is very wonky. A wee bit like me.

IMG_8824This week (6):

Very simple. The middle fabric is leftovers from my youngests crib sheet and change pad I made for her.

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Theme Thursday – Snow

There has been no shortage of snow all across North America. I have friends all over the USA and it has been fun hearing the stories of snow in areas that normally don’t get any snow. It is hard for us up here in Canada to understand how 2″ of snow can bring a city to a stop (unless you live in Toronto, hahaha). The reality is that most areas that don’t get snow don’t have the infrastructure, machines and know how to deal with it. It is no fault of their own. Just like I have no clue what to do in a tornado except run to the basement and hope I pick the right wall to hide behind.  There is one amazing thing that seems to occur all across North America in extreme weather and that is Community.

Yesterday our town was hit with a pretty substantial storm. Lots of snow and lots of blowing. The schools were open and the busses were running much to many a student’s hopes. By midday things were a mess. I had to run out to pick up the oldest from daycare and I almost got stuck many times. This really cool thing happened though. Tales of community spirit started to spread across social media. People were pushing people out of snow banks, digging each other’s cars out of parking lots and clearing each other’s driveways. In a time where there seems to be so many who are just out there looking out for themselves it was really nice to see people stopping and helping each other. The girls and I set out to clear the driveway and our amazing neighbour came over and cleared our driveway with his snowblower. It would have taken me hours to clear it and he accomplished it in 10 mins. Then I looked up and down the street and my heart warmed a little more, there were people out all over the place, helping each other, laughing, sledding  and being good neighbours. Our neighbourhood came out of hibernation and came together to help each other.

Community makes me happy. I need more community in my life.

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THEY ARE LIVING MY DREAM!!!

Yesterday the weather was lovely. The sun was shining. The roads were dry. Basically the exact opposite of today. (Sidenote: I hear my neighbour snowblowing my sidewalk. I’ve never met him but he is my favourite neighbour. I shall bake him cookies some day!). I haven’t seen this much snow fall in awhile. I kind of like it. So on this lovely day yesterday I dropped the oldest at the daycare and buckled the youngest in for a road trip. We were just going down to the end the road an hour. It was a real road trip because we got lost, because the bridge was out. I was not prepared for unmarked detours.

We started off to visit Niagara Sewing Centre. My machines need love. I don’t trust the place close by as they took my serger for over 3 months!!! 3 months!! I wanted to check this place out and get a feel of the place. I am so glad I did. They are so helpful and friendly! They are moving to a new location at the end of the month and will be carrying Brother’s! I can’t wait! Momma needs a new embroidery machine! One HUGE plus was that they carry my favourite thread. I LOVE WonderFil Konfetti thread . It was my first quilting thread and I haven’t found another that I like as much. I moved away from my last supply location and have been trying to find another local distributor ever since. Yesterday I bought a box. There are 5 spools in a box. I use a lot of thread.

I like to do a lot localish. So since we were going out of town localish I decided to check out one fabric shop because why not? The first one that popped up was Bee Modern Fabrics &Yarn in Virgil ON. The website looked cute so I thought why not? It’s just outside of Niagara on the Lake and I had heard magical things about that place. After some extra turns and ill fated truck stop stop we made it to the shop. It looked cute from the outside but I was not prepared for the inside. No lie. I walked in and loved what I saw in the entry way and saw a room of yarn that some of my friends would poop their pants over but when I saw the fabric I died. It was like my fabric wish list in real life. I was stunned. I became useless. It was so beautiful and organized by colour. There was so much to see and I wanted it all. I was so overwhelmed that I couldn’t deal. I just couldn’t handle it. I walked around for 30 mins. Picked things up, put them down. I wanted to ask to move in or for a job or to be the shop mouse. I wanted to ask to take pictures but I was too scared. So I grabbed a bolt and asked for a 1/2 yard (they do yards and metres there!), paid, said I would be back and then left. It was just too much.

I picked this fabric.

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Happy Stripe in Blue part of the so Happy Together line by Deena Rutter for Riley Blake. It’s a cute fabric and will be useful but this shows how overwhelmed I was. This place was packed full of bright, beautiful and intense fabric and I got a muted stripe.

So I’m jealous of them. Like very jealous. They are living my dream. They have THE cutest shop full of happiness. I want that. I’m pretty sure I have a few friends who would want this dream with me. I want a shop. I want my dream fabrics in my hand. I want to close the shop at night and hug all the fabric (is that weird? I don’t care if it is weird).

Le Sigh.