Thursday, March 22, 2012

Thin Me Down Thursday: Week 4

This is my 4th posting for Thin Me Down Thursday.  This past week has been filled with lots of things but workout and keeping track of food wasn't part of it.  I managed to maintain my weight loss but really can see the difference that tracking consumption and working out makes.  

Let's start with when you live on a farm, have a family, work an off farm job and volunteer your time is limited and sometimes it feels like like is closing down on you.  I have felt a little overwhelmed and isolated this week.  It started last week with shin splints that made me want to chop my legs off...
I thought oh my muscles are just sore and out of shape it will get better...
I continued to walk...giving Jillian a break.  Then the shin splints go worse and 
I stopped walking to alleviate some pain.  

On Monday I planned to kick things back off with Jillian...
that didn't happen either...
my back was KILLING me...
I know right now I sound like a big whiny baby...but seriously I thought the muscles and bones in my back 
were going to stop working all together...
after 2 days of intense pain from my back and about 5 from my shins 
I went to the chiropractor to get some relief.

Oh how I love that man...
he gave my back instant relief and explained my leg trouble..
(FYI: I have had a standing appointment with the doc on and off for about 4 years due to back pain) 

My shin splints are caused by walking up hill...
the road I walk on is hilly and curving which is causing the muscle in my shins to swell and get stuck in the sheath surrounding them...when the muscle gets stuck the pain starts

So according to him I can walk all I want...just not up in and not in flip flops 
I go back tomorrow for xrays and another round of treatment on my back...
and honestly...I can't wait!!

So below is the current chart:


After reviewing this chart and my notes I realized two things:

1) I have to track what I eat and how much each day...otherwise I am not accountable
2) I must schedule exercise into my day..using my calender and reminder notifications or I put it off

So what do I plan to do to get back on track for next week
1. Track my consumption
2. Schedule my workouts with reminders (and sync all my calenders)
3. Spend 20 minutes with Jillian each day
4. Play outside with lil man daily for at least 30 minutes

That's that for this week...
until next time...

Caci

Wednesday, March 21, 2012

Wrangler Wednesday: Welcome Spring

So how do you know it's spring around the farm...in South Carolina?




Little boys beg to go fishing...and actually catch fish
and more fish...shorts become part of a cowboy's attire...even if only temporarily.  



Grass is growing...currently this field has grass as high as the grill on the bad boy.


Fields are full of sunshine

cowdogs run through pastures and fields hoping to chase something


At lunch time you can find ewes with new babies

the new babies already act like they want to knock you down and they are only a few hours old

The bond between mother and child is universal...the ewe is made to bear and protect your young just like I bear and protect my lil man

some mama are more in your face type of parents



Blueberry bushes put on new leaves

and tomato plants sprout on my kitchen counter...waiting on the last fear of frost to past


Those are our tell-tell signs that spring has arrived and the time has come to celebrate new life...
For our family we the new life of spring reminds us of the new life we are given when we come to accept Jesus Christ as our Lord and Savior.  It is in the spring that we celebrate and remember that Jesus was crucified to save us from our sin.  John 3:16 "For God so loved the world, that he gave his only Son, that whoever believes in him should not perish but have eternal life."  

Until Next time-

Caci

Tuesday, March 20, 2012

Teach Me Tuesday: Mommy School & Pink Slime

Last night the hubby and I had a conversation about Pink Slime.  We were talking about how cattle prices had dropped slightly and I asked was it a correlation.  He said he wasn't sure but asked "What the crap is pink slime, anyways? I heard some guys at the barn talking about it but I was too busy to focus."  So I did my best...which was terrible...to explain what pink slime was.  

Basically this is what I know...it is beef, that is left over after you get steaks and roast out of cuts...then the meat is separated from the fat kinda like you separate cream from milk.  Then its all mixed together and added to ground beef.  It is beef, it looks like beef but people are scared of it because of the spin the news media puts on it...no news flash there!

Then this morning on Facebook I saw a post from the Center for Food Integrity about what other than... PINK SLIME!!!  They of course do a much better job of explaining it and Dr. Dickson is an expert...I am not.  Here is a Q & A with Dr. Dickson.  So then I began to wonder this stuff has been around for YEARS & YEARS...why just now are we worried about this...I discovered this blog posting on this Discovery News that explained a little.  Check it out too.  

So now let's chat a moment about Mommy School.  This is my effort to home educate my now 4 year old.  It's takes a lot of effort working full time, helping on the farm, and trying to teach a preschooler.  But in our family it's important for me to do all of these things.  I wish I could stay at home and only focus on the farm and the family but right now that's not possible.  Anyways...these past few weeks we have had rounds of Mommy School daily for hours to I don't want to do school today.  Both of which are OK for us.  I refuse to force him to do school if he doesn't want to...many times I find he will still pick up a school activity to work on even though he says "NO SCHOOL MOMMY!".  

We have added a few new curriculum materials to our school!  I purchased a Geo board (like this one)a while back from our local teacher store.  He likes it OK but its not his favorite.  We are still working on incorporated this into our lessons.  Mainly as a way for him to create letter and shapes.  Well in his world we can only create pastures for cows using the Geo board.



Last week I ordered counting bears and pattern blocks with boards.
These items just arrived yesterday and lil man has already enjoyed playing with them!  He love the pattern blocks and despite the reviews I read online he had no problem with getting the blocks to stay on the board.  

He liked sorting the bears but really loved having his dinosaur counters gobble up the bears...only the T-Rex of course!  

We have added 2 VeggieTales books to our daily routine.  We use VeggiesTales: 365 Day Starter Devos for Boys in the mornings or during Mommy School and VeggieTales: 365 Bedtime Devos for Boys we use at bedtime.  Both books are focused on helping bring lil' man closer to God and understand that Jesus loves him and is his friend.  We were lucky enough to be able to purchase them at our local Christian bookstore, Footprints.  The girl who runs the place is super sweet and they have a good selection of items.  If you are ever in downtown York, SC be sure to stop in and say hi!  

Until next time...

Caci

    

Monday, March 19, 2012

Mommy Monday

Today is Monday- you know that awful day when you wake up and realize its back to work...ugh its always been funny to me how far Monday is from Friday but how close Friday is to Monday...but anyways...

So some of you may remember back in January I started Good Morning Girls study in Ephesians- now to be honest I have been terrible at keeping up with the reading and the SOAP (Scripture, Observation, Application, Prayer).  It's not that I don't want to but I forget continuously and if I don't forget, I put it off saying I'll do it later and well we all know...later never gets here.  This morning I was almost 2 full weeks behind but thankfully each week is only a few verses so I can easily catch up but when I don't read and focus on the small verses daily I feel that I am missing out on many of the important things God is trying to tell me.  I am happy to say as of now I am officially caught up and hope to finish out the next 2 weeks without forgetting or putting off.  I am going to schedule it on my calender...maybe that will help.

I took this weekend as a break, no obligations, official workouts, or big to-do list.  Saturday began with Wyatt and Mommy cuddle time and then we made semi-homemade doughnuts.




They were "licious" according to lil man.  We finally were able to sit down and watch some good Saturday morning cartoons together without having to rush out and run errands or go somewhere. 


 We got some playtime in with Joe-Joe, Mollie, & Millie (our cowdogs).  


As I was cleaning up I ran across my Granny's recipe binder.  I thought that the only recipes in there were ones that she cut out of magazines, flyers, etc  

I was shocked and delighted to discover that there were a good many handwritten recipes, including Red Velvet Cake, Bread & Butter Pickles, and many more! 

 I love the worn, stained recipes that bring back fond memories of my childhood growing up next door.    I can't wait to make these for my family.  




Saturday afternoon Wyatt & I went fishing.  The lil man caught a good sized brim within 5 minutes of his 1st cast...
Then a 2nd one just a short while later...

Once we fished the upper pond we took a ride to the lower pond and on the way we saw a nice flock of turkeys which Wyatt immediately wanted to hunt!

We also started working on our raised beds (pictures to come).  We have 4-5 beds depending on how we put them together.  Right now we only have 1 about halfway done...hopefully we can work on them some more tonight.  Ideally we will plant by the end of the week.  I have some great ideas for our garden and play area from Pinterest of course!

I also plan to break out the sewing machine again soon...especially since Brandy will soon be scheduling a photo shoot in which I will be supply custom made clothing for the kiddos.  I have lots of ideas on what these outfits will look like.  But first I want to make something for lil' man and myself, since it always seems like I sew for everyone but us.  My plan for me is either a new dress or skirt for spring from one of ICandy's tutorials.  For lil man it will be something fun...like an appliqued Easter shirt or new shorts for summer.  

I have lots of plans to enjoy this upcoming weekend as well...because after it my life goes back to normal.  From the last weekend of March through the 1st weekend of May I have something on my calendar each weekend...from my bestfriend's wedding (Yay!!) to conferences, livestock shows, and 4-H events...not to mention work.  

So until next time--

Caci



Thursday, March 15, 2012

Thin Me Down Thursday: Week 3

So a couple of week's ago I began a journey to lose weight.  You can check out the post of week 1 and week 2 if you would like to catch up.  

This week has been a little challenging as we have had lots going on.  Last weekend we had 2 birthday parties to attend cake and weight loss don't go hand in hand typically.  

In addition I began walking every other day about 2.5 miles.  

#farm wife #fitness...nice morning to enjoy a walk on the #family #farm

The weather has been really nice however walking doesn't yield as much weight loss as Jillian's workout which amazes me.  I have pinned lots of ideas and inspiration for my journey on my Pinterest board.  This has helped to motivate me more.

This week I plan to try to walk and do Jillian's workout to help maximize my weight loss.  This week has really been slightly frustrating as I didn't lose as much weight as last week however the scale still went down.  I am still working on my diet...trying to control portion sizes and eat less calories while still enjoying food.  If you don't know it I really really enjoy food.  So here is this week's graph.  Check it out!


I think the bust difference is because I was wearing a different bra for this week's measurements(VS) and last week was a sports bra.  If you have any suggestion on how to deal with cravings please share.  Have a blessed weekend and enjoy the wonderful weather we are having!

Until next time-


Caci

Thursday, March 8, 2012

Thin Me Down Thursday: Week 2

So last week I began this journey (read it here).  It was a difficult one to start but has definitely been encouraged all week by amazing friends and family.  A few things I have learned in the last week.

1. My typical net calorie intake was anywhere from 2000-2500 calories per day with no exercise...I have started exercising daily and been able to reduce my net calories for the day to 1500 or less each day for the last 7 days.

2. I have read numerous fitness magazines, even subscribed to a few and found that there are lots of people who have faced the same challenge and overcame it.

3. Jillian Michaels can only kick your butt if you let her.  I have been doing the 30 day Shred workout and I have seen results but the biggest is in my endurance and stamina not only during the workouts but throughout the day...and night (wink wink)

One of the magazine I picked up was All You Health & Fitness.  In it was an article titled "Make small changes and see BIG results!"  The article talked about rethinking your current routine and committing to a new resolution every week for 12 weeks.  I was kinda amazed to see that I had already put a few of the 12 things in place.

Week 1 was focused on starting a journal and well that is what this is.  I write down things daily on sticky notes to track my successes and setbacks and then put them all together in a blog post.  In addition I also use My Fitness Pal to log all my food and exercise.  This has been great to help me see what days I consumed more food on and what days I exercised more.  It also keeps me accountable.

Week 2: Clear Clutter & Set Health Goals...just last week I cleaned up my entire kitchen and reorganized it to make it more family friendly while preparing meals.  And as you probably already know set a few major health goals.

Week 3: Practice Positive Thinking...well I have had a lot of practice on this thanks to my wonderful friend and family!  They have given me the courage to expect more from myself.

Week 4: Drink More Water...I have drank more cups of pure water in the last 7 days than I have in the last 7 months...prepares even the last 7 years!!!

Week 5: Make each day more active...I finally have gotten up off my butt each day and exercised.  I have been working out 20 minutes a day with Jillian Michael's 30 Day Shred program and finally I don't feel like I am going to die at the end of the workout.

Week 6: Plan meals ahead of time...that is my goal for the upcoming week!  So there is no more 6 p.m. crunch and everyone will be happier in our family!

Week 7: Cut back on Sugar...increasing my water consumption has meant I have decreased my diet coke habit.  In addition I have also not had a Reese's Peanut Butter cup in 7 days and in all honesty...I haven't missed them as much as I thought I would.

Week 8: Rethink Carbs...we will work on that one later

Week 9: Slow down on Fast Food....thanks to My Fitness Pal I am much more aware of what I am eating and the nutritional content.  Even though I have still eaten fast food in the last week I have changed what type of fast food I am eating.

Week 10: Add new exercise...check...I started exercising!  Somedays I walk and workout with Jillian in addition to cleaning house and dancing with the little man.

Week 11: Catch up on sleep...umm this sounds great...I will have to make time for this one in the near future

Week 12: Be more mindful...I am trying to keep things in perspective and reduce my stress level.

So all in all I think its been a pretty successful week.

But this week did have its challenges as little man was diagnosed with pneumonia and caring for him always comes first.  I had to travel for some volunteer work on Saturday which puts you eating catered food that was wonderful but also not the best for you.  And on Tuesday stress got to me and I ate lunch ate Zaxby's...and not a salad.  So did you decide to join up?

If so there is a button on my side bar and a linky at the end of this post!


So what everyone is really wondering is how did  I do this week...let's look at the numbers

THINMEDOWNCHARTWEEK2

My jean size hasn't really changed at all but I can tell they are looser in some areas than others.  So that is my journey for the week.  Hopefully I can keep this forward momentum...what do you do to stay fit?

Until next time--

Caci








Wednesday, March 7, 2012

Wrangler Wednesday

Caroline speaking for SC beef ambassador program

Caroline Hutton 2011 SC Beef  Ambassador addressing the SC Cattlemen's Annual Meeting



Wyatt going to Grandma & PawPaw's...part of our exercise together plan

Commissioner Weathers and his haul

SC Agriculture Commissioner Hugh Weathers with his haul in the Buggy Race in honor of Food-Checkout week.

Until next time-

Caci

Tuesday, March 6, 2012

Teach Me Tuesday: Farmers

A while back wall photos started popping up on my Facebook news feed.  They were beautiful photographs with ag facts or quotes on them.  Of course I shared many of them.  Some were liked and others were able to start a conversation between farmers and non-farmers.  All of the images where created by Erin Ehnle or as she is know on Facebook...Keeping it Real: Through the lens of a farm girl.  She is only 20 but has a wonderfully creative mind.  Here are a few of my favorites...I hope that these images help you to learn a little more about agriculture and farming in America.  Please take a moment and check Erin's work out on Facebook.


This one is my favorite because I do believe...
"Created by Erin Ehnle/Keeping it Real: Through the Lens of a Farm Girl





"Created by Erin Ehnle/Keeping it Real: Through the Lens of a Farm Girl

"Created by Erin Ehnle/Keeping it Real: Through the Lens of a Farm Girl

"Created by Erin Ehnle/Keeping it Real: Through the Lens of a Farm Girl

I can never forget where it all started as a 4 year old tag along to 4-H meetings...
"Created by Erin Ehnle/Keeping it Real: Through the Lens of a Farm Girl

"Created by Erin Ehnle/Keeping it Real: Through the Lens of a Farm Girl

"Created by Erin Ehnle/Keeping it Real: Through the Lens of a Farm Girl

"Created by Erin Ehnle/Keeping it Real: Through the Lens of a Farm Girl

Until next time-

Caci

Monday, March 5, 2012

Mommy Monday: I think we have a zoo

As a child I always wanted to take in every stray. My first dog, Blondie came from the pound...I had him for about 10 years. Then there was the bird dog, Mutt that my mom & sister found when I was 5. My mom swore Mutt could only stay the weekend until the vet opened on Monday...I had him for 12 years. Or my cat Snipper that I raised from a kitten...19 years he was my faithful friend. In addition there were rabbits, fish, birds, hamsters and a few other pets throughout the years. Obviously this caring trait passes on as Wyatt is quickly amassing his own group of giveaways and strays.

First he got a few cats from a co-worker...

Then there was Millie

Next was Thumper

And most recently came JoJo.


 He loves each animal unconditionally no matter what! He constantly wants to bring home another pet. Now at 4 he has learned that with pets come chores...feeding, cleaning cages and playing with them. So maybe a zoo isn't so bad...the lessons it teaches far outweigh the hassle...so I suppose we will continue to add to our collection, grow our responsibility, and learn about the animal world.

Until next time~

Caci

Thursday, March 1, 2012

Thin Me Down Thursday

Today is the beginning of Thin Me Down Thursday.  This is where I will be sharing with you my weight loss/fitness journey (or struggle).  I'm a pretty open person- I don't mind sharing the details of family and farm life; however the idea of sharing my weight loss journey with all of you kinda freaks me OUT!  Mainly because I feel to be effective in sharing my story and passion for farming I have to be real, open and honest and those ideals carry over into all blogging topics- including this one.  And frankly I don't want to be honest about this- I want to daydream that I am 50 lbs lighter, tan with perfectly toned arms and legs not to mention a killer bootay to match but that's not me....

this is me...I am an obsese semi-active mom who spends 40 hours a week at a desk, helps on the family farm daily, cooks supper at 8 p.m. and caters my cooking to include traditional southern dishes like country fried steak, homemade mashed potatoes, pan gravy, biscuits, and fried squash (dang I'm hungry).  (**Please note that this does not mean I will no longer prepare these sinfully delicious dishes just with less frequency). 

But it isn't just supper expanding my waistline...lunch is a contributing factor as well.  Many days I grab a bite with co-workers or hit the drive through without even glancing at the calorie count (I have a deep love for Zaxby's buffalo chicken finger plates to the point the girls at the window know my order by heart). 

In addition I do very little in the way of exercise...maybe if you add up all of my farm work, cleaning, and chasing lil man you might get a few hours each week but obviously not enough to keep the scale from creeping its way up. 

How did I come to this realization??  Well it's simple last week I did a television interview and saw this picture afterwards


...needless to say I was in complete and utter disbelief...devastated that I had grown so large (in fact I now weigh more than I did when I had Wyatt).  So that's why I'm beginning this journey- I am tired (literally and figuratively) of my size...I want to be able to chase my lil man without getting winded, run a mile and not see my life flashing before my eyes, be proud of the body I have and enjoy shopping for clothes again.  But I also want to be healthier and set a good example for Wyatt.  Not to mention I think losing a few pounds might help with conciving baby #2.   Wyatt sees William work hard day in and day out eating what he wishes (William requires like 3,500 calories a day to maintain his weight with his activity level...which did I mention any extra weigh he gains during the winter sheds the moment May arrives) but he doesn't see me doing the same.  I want Wyatt to learn that it takes hardwork to get what you want in life no matter what it is...he sees us work hard for everything else but not our health and I want that to change.  Plus I NEVER EVER want another photo like that unless I am getting ready to deliver quads or something!!  So there you have it-my reasoning, my motivation...now for my POA (Plan of Action...I know FFA peeps its really Progarm of Activities but just go with it!)

1.  Excerise more...like 6 days a week for 20 minutes a day.  (I am starting off with Jillian Michael's 30 day shred program) and walking 30 minutes 3-4 times a week.

2. Change my eating habits; now I'm not going to force my family all onto some crazy diet but I am going to practice portion control and prehaps not deep fry the majority of our meals.  I might even cut out some starches-the main differences will come with my breakfast and lunch choices (yes that means limiting my consumption of Bojanle's ham biscuits and Zaxby's). 

3. Talk about it!  I'm pretty good at talking so this should be easy but I struggle with it...Talk with my family and my friend (including all of you) but mainly pray about it.  This isn't something I would typically discuss with God but with his guidance and support from the peeps in my life I can do this!

So what are my goals on this journey:
1. Excercise 6 days a week for the next 8 weeks
2. Make better food choices at each meal
3. lose 25 lbs by July 4th (that's 18 weeks or 1.4 lbs/week)
4. lose 50 lbs by Dec. 31st 2012.

There they are written down for all to see...so now I have to get to the part I have been dreading...I don't really want to share where I am starting from...but I can't be accountable without it...so here goes (please don't judge me)

Height...5' 2"
Weight... 209lbs
Waist.... 47 inches
Hips..... 49 inches
Bust....
pants size 16

This is my before picture...muffin top and all...well jumbo muffin top



Each week I will check in on Thursday and let you know how things are going...like did I meet my exercise goals that week or eat fried chicken daily or maybe just maybe lose 10 lbs overnight (happy thought) and measurements, weight and occasionally a new picture .  And I really don't want to do this alone so just in case you would like to join I will be developing a linky for next week's post  so you can take the steps to reaching your fitness goals.  If you don't blog don't worry just post your updates in the comments section each week.

So until next time-

Caci