Tuesday, January 12, 2016

Lets Get Healthy - Meal Planning and Prep



For the last 10 weeks I have been meal planning, and to say its one of the biggest reasons I've been successful in my weight loss journey is an understatement.  Every Friday night or Saturday morning, I sit down and plan out the next 7 days worth of meals: Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner, and 2 snacks.  I make my grocery list, head to the store to pick up all the yummy foods for the week ahead, and then head home to prepare our food for the next day and off we go.


This has been working great, until the holidays hit.  I got to the point, that I felt every night I was spending 2-3 hours in the kitchen making dinner, cleaning up from dinner, and then preparing lunches for the next day.  By the time we had dinner and I prepped for the next day, it was time to go to bed.  LOL!

So this past weekend, I decided to do something different.  I decided to meal prep ALL my food for Monday - Friday.  This meant spending 2 hours in the kitchen cooking ALL my food at once, and can I say that my life has been changed.   I felt that a weight had been lifted off my shoulders when I got up on Monday morning and everything was done! 

Pic of all my meals for the week! 

Now all I have to do is get up in the morning, and all my food is ready to go.  It makes staying on this clean eating lifestyle plan sooooo much easier. 

So what is my advice at Meal Planning.  Here are 4 easy steps:

1) Get good containers.  
I am still in the process of getting 2 and 3 divider containers, but I do love my MealPrep containers. These cost a little more than Ziploc containers, but are sooo worth it.  Amazon has a great selection, and Santa put these fun containers in my stocking this Christmas. 

2) Make a good menu and keep it simple. 
Don't try to go too crazy and be too fancy.  Just keep it simple and maybe repeat breakfast and lunch on Mondays/Wednesdays AND on Tuesdays/Thursdays to keep the menu simple. Also, check out sites like Pinterest or event Instagram (searching hashtag #mealprep) to find ideas on what to fix.

3)  Buy only whats on your list.
When you go to the grocery store, only buy the food on your list.  Stay away from junk food that you know will trip you up.  And, if your like me, whose husband likes to have a snack or two around the house, just buy cookies and chips that you do not like.  That way you will not be tempted to eat it. 

4) Make a list
Make a list of ALL the fun things you can do now that you are not in the kitchen every night worried about planning and fixing your meals for the next day.  Once dinner is over, you can go and relax, because tomorrow is already planned. 

Woohoo!!  

And, here was my food on Monday.  I am participating in a 21 Day Healthy Eating Challenge so I took a pic of all the food I ate that day.  All this delicious, super healthy food is less than 1,500 calories and had me full all day.

How about you?  Do you meal plan or meal prep?

Would love to know your tips.  Or, if you have any questions about how to get started eating clean and healthy, let me know.

Be Blessed My Friends! 


post signature

Tuesday, January 5, 2016

My 36th Year.............



Wow, I simply cannot believe that I am on the other side of 35.  In four (4) years, I will be 40 and WOW, timing is flying by.  Each year, around my birthday I contemplate my goals for the next year, and below are 36 manifestos that would sum up my thoughts about living the best life at 36! This is the advice I would give my younger self.  :-) And, please note that I meant to post this last month, and just realized it was still in the drafts folder.  LOL!

1. First things first - Word In, Workout, Work Plan
To be successful at anything, I must start each day in The Word of God and praying and talking to the Lord.  Next, its essential that I workout 6-7 Days a Week.  Finally, I must plan out my meals in advance, and follow the plan.  It doesn't mean that I will never go off the plan (bc I am sure some days I will), but if I have a goal in mind, and a path of how to get there, then all I have to do is work the plan to succeed.

2. Do what I love, and love what I do.
I am so blessed to have a job that I simply love.  I am passionate always doing my best, and love being part of something in my hometown that helps promote tourism and growth.

3. Its the EVERYDAY, not just the every now and then.
Tackle all goals one day at a time.

4. What the heart knows, the heart knows.
Always trust my  gut and intuition. 
 
5. Quit Caffeine
I actually quit all caffeine a little over two months ago, and plan to continue.


6. Clean Space = Clean Head Space
I truly believe this motto, and its why I spend more time than most people organizing and keeping things in order.

7. Define what success is, and go after it.

8. Step on the snake before breakfast.
Each day, tackle the one thing that I am dreading the most first thing in the morning.  It could be a work task, or even  a workout, just do it.  My day will only get better from there.

9. Travel Often
Travel more with my hubby, friends, and family.

10. Remember only true PEACE can come from the Lord. 
Be still and wait and trust on the Lord, and He will lead me on an incredible journey. 

11. Everything I want and need is up to me (and the Lord) to make it happen.
Don't be lazy in pursuing my dreams. 

12. Always be perfectly clear and not beat around the bush.
My natural tenancies is to be an encourager and to make people feel good; however, its my goal to be more upfront with people and really communicate my concerns and opinions (in a kind and loving manner.)

13. Always remember, if its meant to be, it will happen. 

14. My Focus Determines My Faith 

15. Believe in Hard Stops for Prayer


16. Identify sources of stress and work a solution.

17. Get enough sleep.

18. Play Together, Stay Together
Begin planning our 10 Year Anniversary.

19. Integrity above all else.

20. Excellence in everything I do. 

21. Pray, laugh, play more.

22. Daily Stillness Appointments

23. Maintain a strong social circle outside of work, as life cannot always revolve around work.

24. Make a commitment to leave work on time or at least a little earlier than normal.

25. I am complete in Christ.

26. Get to work a little early to get a head start on the day.

27. Always have a hobby.

28. Be a good steward of what the Lord has given me.

29. Always choose encouragement over being critical.

30. True Love is a BIG Deal......Treasure It! 
And, I am thankful that I got to experience true love with my soul mate at the age of 16, and we are still in love 19 years later. 

31. Gratitude
Always remain thankful.

32. Study God's Word.
Know it, etch it on my heart and mind.

33. Know, believe, and claim  the promises of God over my life.

34. Family First

35. Give more than I receive.

36. Live a life of adventure, faith, and excellence.

Here is to an incredible 36th Year!! 
post signature

Monday, January 4, 2016

Pause


I absolutely love the week between Christmas Day and New Years Day!  I traditionally take the week off from work, and spend time cleaning up our home, organizing drawers and closets, and really preparing myself for the year ahead. And, that is exactly what I did last week.  I only worked one day between Christmas and New Years, and for the rest of the week I worked around the house.   I got to spend a lot of time at home, and I loved every minute of it.

I CLEANED, ORGANIZED, and knocked off several projects around the house. Plus I was lucky Matt was off a few extra days last week, so we could both tackle a few projects together. 

So what did we do - Check Out This List Below..........

#1 - All Christmas Decor Taken Down and Put Away

#2 - Organized our closets.

#3 - Caught up on the "Out-of-Ordinary" Laundry - things like Bathroom Rugs, Guest Bath Towels, Cat Rugs, etc.

#4 Picked Up and Organized our Garage

#5 - Help my hubby put together my two new rockers.

#6 - Ordered New Books to Kick off a Fun Year of Reading

#7 - Bought New Worship Music - I cannot wait to share my Winter Playlist with you soon.

#8 - And, finally I enjoyed being at HOME

I feel so ready to take on 2016 and see what all the Lord has in store for me and my family.

Have a blessed Monday!
post signature

Friday, January 1, 2016

The Best Is Yet to Come................



I simply LOVE LOVE LOVE New Years Day!!  It represents a new beginning and starting over, and who doesn't love that!  For a little fun, I thought it would be great to set 16 goals for 2016.

So here goes:

1.  Establish a CONSISTENT routine of spending 30 minutes to an hour every morning in quiet time with the Lord.

2. Continue to eat clean and healthy.

3. Continue to workout 4-6 times per week.

4. Stop the perfection battle.
The Lord has really put this on my heart this week, and its something that I haven't had to deal with in a while.  Its no surprise to those who know me well, that I like things a certain way and that I strive for excellence in everything I do in life. Lately, though, I have really been beating myself up when I do not perform "perfectly."  I know the Lord wants us to strive for excellence, but we will never reach perfection.  His grace will always help us do what we cannot do.  However, I have bought into the lies that my worth is based on my performance and not on who God says I am.  I feel so blessed that the Lord has given me the wisdom to see right through these lies I feel, and that with time, He will continue to teach me my true value in Christ.  My plan - PRESS IN to the Word of God, and strive for excellence not perfection. 

5. Be a good steward.
I truly believe to have a fulfilling life we must be good stewards of the things The Lord has blessed us with.  I work hard to be a good steward of the physical blessings like our home, cars, items, etc.  Matt and I work hard to keep our home clean and tidy, and we also maintain our cars and items we have around the house.  However, one thing that I have felt the Lord as begun to encourage me to do is being a good steward of our finances.  I typical loath the word "coupons" and often do not take the time to try and save our family money; however, going into the new year this will be an area that Matt and I see a lot of growth and change. 

6. Attend at least one (1) women's ministry conference.

7. Join a Church
We have put off this decision long enough.  Last year I had 1,001 excuses on not looking for a church.  However, we have run out of those excuses.  Please pray for Matt and I during this journey, and that the Lord will lead us to a church were we can serve. 

8. Go to a VOLS away game (and, maybe a couple of home games too)!

9. Get into fiction reading again.
It seems like I am always reading business books or spiritual growth books, but this year I would like to read 3-4 fiction books too. 

10. Finish Phase #2 of decorating our home.
This includes getting all the furniture we need for the house, build out the workout room, place lighting on our new back deck, finish decorating our home office, painting the main living area of our home, and finish the landscaping outside. 

11. Volunteer and Serve
Find a local organization to volunteer

12. Take up tennis (again), and try golf again too. 

13. Get more aggressive in our saving and retirement planning

14. Take 3 Long Weekend Trips with my hubby

15. See Jimmy Buffett and/or Kenny Chesney in Concert

16. Enjoy Life More
This may seem simply, but so often I find myself running from task to task that I don't take time to really enjoy life.  I believe its all about perspective, and focusing on whats really important in life. This year I want to truly enjoy the fun moments in life.  I want to laugh more and just enjoy life  more.


Happy New Year My Friends!

post signature

Thursday, December 31, 2015

2015............What an Incredible Year!!

WHAT A YEAR!!  2015 has definitely been one of my favorite years so far in life.  Matt and I experienced a lot of change this year, but with all the change has brought a lot of adventure, laughter, and most of all great memories.  

If I had to pick one word to describe 2015 it would HAPPY.  

I am just so happy with where the Lord has taken us this year, and I am very excited for all 2016 has in store.  Before we ring in the new year, I thought I would take a fun look back at all the excitement this year. 

 This time last year, we were packing up our Knoxville House. 
The Lord really blessed us with selling our house. 
It when on the market in January and we sold it in 5 hours!! God is so good. 

I could not have imaged this year with out these two ladies.  We make up the BCM Marketing Team, and we have worked so hard this past year to promote all that BCM is doing. 
I am so blessed to work alongside these two!! 


 I tried Ridgewood Bluechesse Dressing for the first time this year! 
And, yes it lived up to all the hype!
And, yes I grew up in Bluff City and never ate this stuff until recently.  LOL! 

Matt and I headed to Pigeon Forge in February to surprise Jamie for his birthday! 
It became a couples getaway, with Matt and I, Jamie and Kristy, and Chad and Ashley.  
Hope we can do it again this year!

 It was a little snowy, but we didn't mind.  It was nice to get away for the weekend! 

In  February we closed on our house and moved in with my In-Laws until we could find a new home. Living with the Davis Family was great, and they took such good care of us. 
So blessed with incredible In-Laws.

 Then the snow came.  Everywhere I went it snowed. 

 I headed to Galax and Wytheville, and woke up to snow. 

 I headed to Nashville and woke up to snow. 

 This was  one of my favorite FB messages this year!  Ha!

 Work also took me to Chicago for a few days, and I had the great opportunity to traveling with two of my favorite tourism ladies.  We had a great time visiting media in Lexington, Cincinnati, and Chicago.

 When I arrived in Chicago I got to reunite with our Bristol crew.
Love these folks, and love working with each of them to promote our hometown. 

 In April, my best friend Tiffany was able to come home and we headed to the Biltmore for the day. We had such a great time!!

 At the end of April, we headed back to Galax to promote OJ and BCM at Houston Fest 
After that weekend, I headed to beach with Matt and Jamie for a few days after their AirSoft tournament. It was nice to slow down for a few days and spend time with my hubby and bro-in-law!

 Another bucket list item was scratched off this year when I saw Garth Brookes in concert.  
WHAT A SHOW!!

 The best part was I got to go with some of my best friends!! 

In June, we headed to the Ryman to celebrate the release of OJ!  
This OJ Marketing team has been the best this year!!

Many nights this year were spent listening to amazing music at the museum.  I love this venue, and my love for great music has truly expanded this past year. 

 In May, Matt and I found the PERFECT HOUSE, and we closed in late-June! 
We have spent the summer and fall, really making this house our home.

 In August, I headed to Dahlonega, GA for our second year of Marketing College. 

I LOVE OUR CLASS!!

I kicked off the fall by being accepted into Lead Bristol!  
I simply LOVE this group, and we are having the best time! 

 In September, we kicked off the 15th Annual BRRR Music Festival. 

 The crowds were amazing!!

And, this team was amazing!! I love High Road! 

 Matt and I got to celebrate our sis-in-law's sister, Whitney, get married in September.  
This is a pic of Kristy and I at the reception. 

 In October, I headed to Raleigh for the IBMA conference! 
This is one of my new favorite bands - MIPSO recording a Radio Bristol Session!

 Oh I just LOVE this picture.  I won't go into why there is a sticker on my boss Leah's leg; however, it just reminds we of how much FUN we have had this year marketing and promoting BCM. There is never a dull moment.

 I just LOVE this picture too!  Meeting "Carol Norma" has been a highlight this year for sure. 

 In October, we got to relax and head to Florida with two of my favorite couples. 
This vacay was by far one of my favorites.
We spent over a week in a beach house that was a few steps from the ocean.
Simply the best! 

 After vacay, we headed to Tuscaloosa to watch the Vols take on the Tide!
It was my first UT away game, and definitely will not be my last.  

 In late-October I decided to start a journey that was LONG OVERDUE!
I completely changed my eating habits, started working out, and got a coach to help me. 
The 21 Day Fix has given me incredible results, and in just under 9-weeks I have dropped 25 pounds. I still have a long road ahead of me, but excited to continue this journey next year. 

 One of the best parts of moving home, has been the family get together, especially during football season.  Even the "Davis Boys" got into the action.  Check out my MIL holding Lil Man Davis! 
 In November, mom, Ryana, and I headed to Biltmore for a fun day of brunch and catching up. 

 In December, Matt and I headed to NYC to celebrate my B-Day!!  

 And, Christmas was great this year!  
We watched all kinds of Christmas movies, one a night for nearly 3 weeks!

 Christmas Eve Family Selfie!

Christmas Day Selfie! 

I hope you enjoyed my 2015 in Review!  Looking forward to all that 2016 has to offer.

post signature