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Won Round 4 Dietbet! etc

May 20th, 2017 at 06:37 pm

Well the one bright spot right now is that I have one 4 of 4 rounds of Dietbet - winnings are about $90 so far. I just need $25 more to recoup my initial bet, then the rest is gravy. Smile I have lost about 26lbs from my initial weigh in. Nobody seems to have noticed yet, but I can tell a difference in how my clothes fit.

For larger people like me, it seems like it takes a loss of more like 50 lbs or more for anyone to venture to guess ... are you losing weight?

Work ... ugh. Ugh ugh ugh. I don't know if interviewing is really a good thing or not ... it gives me hope of getting out of there for something better .. so I start getting irritated even more by stupid things.

I thought I was to hear back about the job by yesterday. The fact that I haven't makes me feel like its probably a no. Frown I hope I at least get the courtesy of an email.

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DH found a leaf blower he wanted on the Sears website Thursday. So on our way to dinner we stopped by. The in store price was more. I couldn't pull up the online price on my phone. DH was really irritated and didn't want to bother talking to anyone.

Friday I found the offer he'd found and took screenshots and printed them out. Then after work and making the bank deposit I stopped at Sears. I told a sales person what I was looking for and asked him if he could honor the online price. He cheerfully said he could - then thanked me for being pleasant. He'd apparently had a lot of unhappy people to deal with that day.

I told him I could relate ...

So .. the leaf blower in store price was $59.95. Online price was $47.95. I had $7.03 in Shop Your Way points - walked out with it for just under $43.

My DH was quite happy when he came out to the kitchen on his way to work to see I'd gotten it. Smile

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I did call my mom for Mother's Day. It went fairly well. I bit my tongue hard when she told me she and paramour had both sold their cars and bought one new one. I badly wanted to ask if her name was on the title ... If she does ever decide to leave this guy *for real* she's kind of painted herself into a corner. Sigh. She's an adult.

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I started a new money making website - Earnably. Pretty good so far.

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Almost forgot! On Wednesday DH and I bought a ladder from Menards. DH started cleaning our gutters by standing on the third rung of the ladder and moving the ladder constantly. After about twenty minutes of me watching him do this, I offered to get up on the roof and finish the job.

Ii have no fear of heights, while DH does. It was my first time on a roof - and it was a little nerve wracking. But I got used to it quickly. Smile It was actually quite fun ... until I had to get OFF the roof.

DH held the ladder tightly for me and talked me down. Whew! Now our gutters are clean!

Long Day - Conversation at Work

May 2nd, 2017 at 02:08 am

So.... today I had a talk with my supervisor - after asking for the 11th pm off.

Long and short - I told her I am looking for another job. That it has nothing to do with her - but mostly my getting stressed out by the cash aspect. I also told her I was worried about the longevity of my position for a number of reasons.

In a nutshell, she reassured me that the cash aspect is not something to be so stressed about (be careful, but not fearful), and that my position isn't going anywhere.

I'm still going to interview for the job, but mainly for the experience (and I don't know who to contact to cancel.) If I get offered the job, I will think about it, but I'm leaning towards staying put.

I'm glad I told her, even if it was really hard.

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I got a $25 AGC from Perk today. I also did a Schwan's offer for 4000 SBs which instantly credited (spent $27.40 after 30% coupon.)

I stopped at Dollar Tree and stocked up on frozen fruit, etc. Then got some bananas from HyVee. About $10 altogether.

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Are there really people who don't know Hitler killed 6 million Jews in WW2??? A co-worker today made a comment expressing shock at that number (reading something in the newspaper.) I kind of thought that was basic high school history ...

New Computer and YouGov

April 2nd, 2017 at 05:34 pm

My new computer arrived on Wednesday, but I didn't set it up until Saturday night. Windows 10 definitely takes some getting used to (at least its not Windows 8!)

My old computer is still working, so I'm using it to run videos on while surfing on my new computer. Smile It can connect via WiFi to my modem, but I think I'll be getting another Ethernet cord to connect directly.

I upgraded my monitor and keyboard - already can tell the new keyboard is loads better than the old one. Smile My monitor is a 23" - watched The Secret Life of Pets on it last night. Sweet!

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Last night I used one of the two $25 gift certificates I got for transferring two prescriptions to a local grocery store. Spent an additional $14.

I also went to Aldi. I was a little frustrated because two of the four main things I went there for, they were out of - Almond Milk and the frozen 85% beef patties (for DH.)

We overspent on Groceries in March by $17. In January and February we came in ~$80 under both months, so maybe our overage was due to some restocking.

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We are in full planning mode for our road trip! We plan on stopping in Colorado Springs for Pike's Peak, Denver for some Pizza place, Las Vegas for a buffet, and some forest in Utah. Then finally arrive to the Los Angeles area to celebrate our one year anniversary with my grandma, aunt, uncle and brother!

I am SO looking forward to the time off! If I could find another job here with comparable salary and benefits ... I'd jump so fast... something that had NO cash dealing.

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I *think* I may make it for Round 3 of Dietbet. I'm about two pounds off and 13 days away.

I'm kind of enjoying my break from Stepbet, but will definitely join one again after the trip. It really is a good motivator to get the steps in!

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I received my $40 check from Inbox Dollars yesterday. I'm already closing in on $7 towards my next check. Smile

This morning I did the last survey I needed to do for YouGov to cash out for a $100 Amazon card. I also have enough to cash out for a $25 Perk AGC.

Too bad I didn't wait a few weeks for these to put towards my computer. Smile I'm sure the $ will come in handy for something else. Wish I could order thru Amazon from Apple - then could use it for my phone.

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I forgot to mention this - but I paid off the last of DH's medical debt in February!

Snowflakes and Shocking Death

March 25th, 2017 at 02:10 am

I thought I'd mention a few of the things I'm doing for my spending money. Some are things most of you do already, but some may be new.

Swagbucks - cashed out for a $25 AGC today, have 1800 left

Inbox Dollars - cashed out for $40.xx today (mostly running video app)

Mypoints - I have enough for a $25 paypal, plus close to a second one

Perktv - 13k points (need 24,400 to get $25 AC)

Survey Sites that don't disqualify you:
Pinecone - cashed out $23 a week ago

YouGov - within two surveys of cashing out for my 2nd $100 AGC (referral link in sidebar)

Passive computer video sites:
Earnhoney - earned $23 in last 3 weeks
---kind of a frustrating site -might be better with a newer computer

Koinme - for next 6 days as $5 signup bonus - earned $16 in less than two weeks (if interested, I can give some pointers, my referral code is: http://koinme.com/af-MUiZwD6Ssh We both get $5.)

Passive mobile only video apps:
Youlotto - earned $5.38 in two weeks

Checkpoints - almost enough for a $10 AGC

Just remembered two more!

IQ - an app that sends you questions to answer and pays immo. Mad 2.25 so far.

Oops, forgot the other one. Smile
Hmmm.. I think thats it other than health apps/bets

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DH found out on Tuesday that a coworker - 40 yo father of two - had died that morning. I'd met this person once - he was one of the few DH got along with/liked to talk to. There'll be a service tomorrow afternoon.

He either died of a stroke, heart attack or diabetic coma. He didn't take very good care of himself.

He was so young - such a preventable death. Frown

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We got our renewal papers for home insurance -$718.I think that' close to what we paid before. It's not due til May - so maybe I could chance signing up for another rewards card ... put this and property tax on it .... Hmmm...

I should be getting my car insurance renewal soon too I think.

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I read a really good Nicholas Sparks book this week - Two by Two. Highly recommend it.

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My diet isn't going so well.. At least I have a few weeks before the next weigh in. (I won $24 in round 2.)

I'm thinking of joining something Stepbet has started called Membership. It's $25 for one year, but it makes the game a bit easier and varied. Plus it eliminates their take of the winnings.

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Hmm not much else I can think of right now. I have decided to NOT build a computer, but am still debating what I'm going to get. I also am planning on getting the 64 GB iPhone SE. That'll save me from having to buy a new protective case. Not sure when I'll get it - but it'll be after the computer for sure!

Doctor Visits, etc

February 22nd, 2017 at 03:35 am

Most of my Monday afternoon was taken up by doctor visits.

I thought my appointment was at 1:30, but it was at two. I showed up at 1:15... Thankfully they have wifi.

They saw me pretty close to 2. My doctor wanted me to do some more bloodwork - thankfully I had not eaten since 9 am - so I was able to do it right away. I also was able to get my first mammogram done. That was interesting.

I was glad to get all of that out of the way on my day off.

At my mammogram appointment I got to use the free valet service at the hospital. I tried to give the guy a tip, but he told me couldn't accept it. So it really was free! (DH laughed t me when I told him, but really, you never can know for sure, can you?)

Next, I rushed to where my DHs appointment was. We had a good discussion with his doctor, which I think helped us both rethink some ideas. We also got a replacement glucose meter - the one we had wasn't working. DH had fought mm on this visit, but said it was worth it. Smile

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as he was getting ready to leave for work, he noticed my two front tires are nearly bald! I'm not sure how I've missed this... I'll be getting new tires soon.

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My thyroid meds are being upped again. Here's hoping they'll help with the energy levels.

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We have magazines up on eBay, but no sales yet. He's starting them pretty high ...but we'll see.

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I'm thinking about doing the Citi checking offer. You earn a $300 bonus for doing things such as direct deposit and moving $15k into the account. I need to make sure I follow through on it though if I start it. I had started the same thing for Santender, but never got past the initial deposit - and lost $150 bonus. Frown It'd really stink to lose $300.

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I had changed my monthly deduction from my paycheck to go into my 457 RoTH instead of the 457 Traditional. This really cut my take home ... I'm wanting to do enough for the savers credit ($2k) but I'm not entirely sure if money put in a Traditional works for that or not. I need to do some more research on it - because it really is taking a bite.

The main thing I need to figure out is if it'd be better to put the money in the ROTH an get the $200 tax savers credit, or put it in the traditional and have my paycheck go back up.

---Gotta go - DH came home early. Smile

Dietbet Round 1 Over, Budget Changes, etc

February 19th, 2017 at 08:08 pm

Round 1 finalized today - $14.44 won. (out of a $115 bet - paid out in July.) Officially lost just over 10lbs.

DH didn't want to go upstairs to take my picture, and consequently I had to redo my weigh in (no carpet.) So still made it with 3+lbs to spare.

I kind of went backwards with diet this week - started on Tuesday. Am back on plan now.

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So on Wednesday DH got up earlier than usual, and I talked to him about my ideas for changing the budget so he'd get the same amount I am, including tithe/giving. He was ok with it, so I redid some of the categories and made two new sections.

I showed him what I did Thursday night and he liked it.

Friday morning I couldn't sleep, so we talked some more. He tells me he'd like to have his fun money in a separate checking account. This was right before I had to get up and ready. I told hm we should talk more Saturday am when he got home from work.

We did talk, and the end result is that he's going to have the separate account for his spending money - and anything I make from Swagbucks etc. will be for my spending money (in addition to what we budget.)

I'm not totally happy with this - but if i makes him motivated to actually start selling some stuff from the basement in order to fund his boat/tv/etc.... I'll live with it. He is going to add me as a death beneficiary to the account.

One of the things we decided was to lay off on the accelerated student loan payoff. The interest is less than what we earn on our checking, and we have several budget categories which could use some beefing up - which is what I did with the budgeted money for loan payoff (above the normal amount.)

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Thursday we were going to go eat at a local Mexican restaurant for a belated VD dinner. However, we got there to discover it was closed due to the Immigrant protest.

What was most interesting to me was that this was the first time I was directly affected by a protest.

We were dissapointed, but understood the reasoning behind it. We ate at a pizza place instead.

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Tomorrow we both have doctor appointments. Mine first (yearly), then DH's. I'm going with DH to his for a number of reasons- one being that I can make sure he brings up what needs to be brought up! Hoping we can get some answers/ideas about an issue and be shown how to use the BP cuff and blood glucose meter.

Frustrating Day - Avoided Temptation

January 31st, 2017 at 02:58 am

I won't go into it - but take TWO phone calls in a row of 15+ minutes at the end of a day where I had lots of sales which needed to be reconciled ... and with the 13 minutes I had left I could reconcile the total from just the amounts to the cash/checks/credit cards but NOT to the actual passes. If I'd had another five or six minutes I might have done it - but Union regs say I have to be done at 4:30, and I'd already pushed it 3 minutes.

That plus multiple annoying other phone calls, and I was not in a good place.

Driving home I really wanted to stop and get junk food. But I didn't.

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I got an email from Citi saying they had No Record of my redeeming points for a check. Ummm...

So I called and redeemed AGAIN - this time for $650. I also converted my card to the double cash back card. Hopefully in time to avoid the annual fee of the Thank You card.

I had ordered some things from Amazon on Sunday due to arrive Wednesday. When looking at the email today, I realized I'd somehow put my old name and address!!

So I contacted Amazon, and they're sending a replacement order! Sweet! (I then went into my address book and deleted the outdated info.)

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A budget meeting funny .... Last night DH and I had filled all the categories except the fun group. I saw there was still $552! Both DH and I were in disbelief because we'd put some large amounts in several categories. So we went through all of them again to be sure we hadn't skipped any.

We got to house maintenance and found out that I'd entered 30 instead of 300! That one little zero makes a big difference!

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I'm going to wait til Wednesday to do a monthly recap - but lets just say I'm happy with groceries. Smile

Dietbet Week 2

January 29th, 2017 at 02:39 am

So I'm still doing well with my eating plan. DH made pancakes on Thursday, plus I had A cookie I had been given Wednesday.

Friday I struggled a little with the temptation of free donuts my boss brought in. I even googled what was the best way to freeze them. In the end I just chose to forget they were there.

I'm still not sure if loosening my plans on Thursdays is for the best. Also, after watching this video, I'm considering just saying no to sugar completely. But .. baby steps.

https://youtu.be/dBnniua6-oM (Sugar: The Bitter Truth)

I'm not quite sure I believe my scale or not ... but I stepped on it this afternoon, and it showed 9lbs gone ... which is more than I need for the first round.

Cutting out soda wasn't enough - it was cutting out all my junkfood eating (and dairy and eggs.)


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I haven't done so well with the 15 minutes ... although I did actually open th steamer mop and USE it this week! My dining room floor at least looked better.
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I found a new app - it's called IQ. It sends you one question at a time to answer for researchers, and then pays you immediately through paypal. I've gotten one question so far, and was paid $.25 instantly. Not a huge moneymaker obviously, but so easy.

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I finished a Stepbet today. I'm going to wait for payout before joining the next one. After this next one though, I may have to take a break, depending on when we do our CA roadtrip. We're talking April, but time will tell.

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I got in touch with Amazon today and got things fixed. (I had siged up for prime, but didn't realize I'd been charged for Amazon cloud drive on a rarely used card. They're refunding that charge. -I'd had it free for a year after a purchase.)

I also contacted Citi about the rewards check I'd ordered for the student loan. They're forwarding my question to the right place.

I also cashed in for $207 in rewards from the Barclay card. This will be put towards the student loan.
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Before I go, I thought I'd share one of my common heat sources. DH took the picture a few days ago. Please excuse the messy desk.







"Barbeque" etc

January 24th, 2017 at 01:37 am

These ads are really annoying.



Last night I made "Barbeque" for dinner using soy curls. My DH, mostly a carnivore, gave it a thumbs up. We also had beans and Brussels sprouts - all made in the InstantPot.


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DH's car is having break issues, so I came home from work and walked outside instead of going to the gym so he could use my car. My phone didn't die until I got home and took it out of my pocket to end my walk. It was cold, but I got home before it was dark.

He has an appointment on Wednesday. That cheap car isn't so cheap - plus its annoying having to change my plans so often. Ugh!

__
I made whole wheat spaghetti tonight for dinner so I could use up the sauce. There's enough for dinner tomorrow, unless DH eats it not realizing its whole wheat. Smile

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It was so nice today not having to take pictures of my food for Pact. I may continue the workout and myfitnesspal pacts, but I think I'm done with the veggie pact. (Although that's the one that makes the most money ....)

Week 1 Dietbet, etc

January 22nd, 2017 at 10:14 pm

Tonight mark one week since my official first weigh in. I don't want to jinx myself, but it feels different this time. I was able to go into grocery stores this week and most totally ignore the chocolate aisles.

I returned the non-working food processor to Aldi, and then stopped at Walgreen's and bought a Mini-bullet using my $5 rewards towards it and did not buy candy. (I would before use the $5 as an excuse to buy candy for "free")

It looks like I am down about 4lbs so far - though some of that is probably water weight.

I did have pizza Thursday night, but wrapped up one of the slices to freeze for Thursday lunch, and told DH he could have the other one.

Maybe I've finally flipped the switch like with soda.

Our grocery spending definitely shows the difference. We are at $182 for the month, and other than produce, I don't see any more til Friday.

_-
Using the mini-Magi Bullet today, I made hummus. DH was awake and taste tested it - thumbs up. I did use canned chick peas, but will get some dry ones to use once I'm out of canned.

In the Instapot I made a pot of Great Northern Beans, and then my sweet potatoes and farro for lunches.

In a bit, I'll be using it to make "pulled pork" with soy curls, and then brussel sprouts - for dinner.

I got YNAB up to date today, and got all my receipts into Receipt Hog and ReceiptPal. I'm 8 receipts away from a $100 gift card in ReceiptPal.

I cashed out for $25 PayPal from Swagbucks, and also for $10 from Achievemint.

I also got notice that $200 cash back reward has been credited on the recent credit card deal.

I ordered a meal delivery from HomeChef through Swagbucks. It cost $20, but I should receive $20 worth of Swagbucks in return. Making it free (obv.) That may be my lunches for a week in February (or Sunday dinner with DH, plus a few lunches.)

I need to get something to lay my sweaters out to dry - something away from the cats (and cat hair.) Wen I bought all those sweaters, I didn't realize most of them were hand wash. Oops.

Jan 18

January 19th, 2017 at 04:22 am

So far so good on my Dietbet gameplan. Essentially it consists of:
No white flour foods (except Thursdays)
No foods that are solely junk (except one small treat on Thursdays - unless this becomes a slippery slope)
When buying something with added sugar (like spaghetti sauce) look for the one with the least.
Track actual food eaten on Myfitnesspal - goal - between 1600 - 1800.
Increase veggies consumption.
No soda.
No dairy or eggs - exception Thursdays.
Strength train 2x a week.
Get at least 7k steps 4x and 9k steps 2 days.

Thursdays I'm allowing exceptions (and major holidays like July 4) within reason. Mainly so I can eat what DH fixes for dinner, but also to leave room for one thing I'm craving each week.

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Thank you everyone for your comments on the post I deleted. I felt it wasn't a post I wanted left up for too long.

On that note though - I took the advice a number of you gave, and came up with this plan:

When I get home this is my routine:
*Feed cats
*Put away items from day
*Put together gym bag
*Prepare lunch and breakfast for next day (unless Fri.)
*Clear out sink / empty dishwasher
*Clean litterboxes
*Set timer for 15 minutes and do something
*Get something to eat
*relax Smile

I think this is something I can actually stick to doing. (Of course, this doesn't include laundry, etc.)

I'm thinking of proposing something similar to DH - only he'd be exempt from the 15 minutes if he did something major that week like mowing the lawn or snowblowing.

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Ugh Pact. This is an app that I use to track veggies/food tracking/workouts. I usually make at least $10/month up to as much as $16.

A few weeks ago I missed my veggie pact by 1 item (I'd eaten the right amount, but didn't get the photo uploaded in time.)

So now I'm back and forth emailing them because they aren't going to pay me for last weeks Pact because my Paypal agreement expired. I wasn't told of a problem. My first inkling was when I couldn't edit my pacts for this week.

I'm thinking I'm going to get back to the $10 cashout, and then be done with it. I hate to lose the extra money, but it sure would b one less thing to worry about.





My Lunch, Won Two Drawings

January 4th, 2017 at 02:18 am

So yesterday I tried doing two things at the same time in my InstantPot - a method referred to as pot in pot. I put 4 sweet potatoes on the little rack that comes with it, and then a pyrex dish with a cup of brown rice,some seasonings, and water. I cooked it for 25 minutes, and then about two hours later, took it out.

Perfect. Smile

I had made beans on Sunday in the IP.

So, this week's lunches will look like this: sweet potato, beans/rice, frozen veggies, apple.

The smaller container holds Triscuits and hummus. I had been buying the little $1.19 box of hummus/crackers at Aldi's. But then last weekend I found container at Walmart.

So, less waste and less money! (I did buy hummus, though I plan on making my own - once I can figure out what's wrong with my food processor.)

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The gym was stereo-typically full of people today. Thankfully I was still able to get a treadmill. Smile
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My Fitbit wasn't syncing today. thankfully, resetting it worked. I'm almost to 10k steps - that would stink to lose that!

(I try to do my stretch days for Stepbet on Monday/Tuesday so I have them out of the way.)

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I won 1k points from PointsClub this weekend from liking a FB post and entering a sweepstakes code. I'm halfway to a $25 gift card.

I also won 20 coins from ReceiptHog for one of the receipts I added in December. I'm close to a $20 PayPal on it.

Not a whole lot, but I rarely win anything, so it felt kind of cool to win two drawings within a few days of each other.

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I managed to go to Dollar Tree 2 days in a row without buying a candy bar or slice of pie, etc. I wouldn't have gone the second time, but DH really wanted some of the spicy beef burritos. (Got frozen fruit the first trip.)

No more grocery shopping til Sunday!

Interview, Soy Curls, Concert!

November 17th, 2016 at 03:22 am

I had my interview on Tuesday afternoon. I ended up NOT changing clothes because by the time I found a parking spot, I only had time to put on makeup and skeedaddle.

There were two interviewers - my potential boss and a potential co-worker.

The job sounds so way up my alley! I *think* they liked me ... hopefully my many "you knows" and "ums" didn't turn them off. Frown

I'd have to learn a lot of new computer programs - one of the aspects of the job is being a Jill of All Trades - so I could take over any responsibility in the office if someone's sick or on vacation.

I sent both of them a thank you note today (handwritten) through Interoffice mail. Smile (Hoping that wasn't a faux paux - using IO mail to send a note ...)

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About two months ago I bought an 8 oz package of a product called soy curls. It sat in my cupboard till about three weeks ago when I finally decided to make something with it! I did a recipe called "Barbeque'd soy curls"

I made the mistake of telling my DH that they tasted nasty just plain and rehydrated. He wasn't willing to try them, even after I told him that the recipe was decent, when you added some mustard and cheese ... Smile

I ate 3 meals out of it, and then froze the rest. This past weekend I reheated it and ate a 4th meal of it. There was still a good bit left (plus some broccoli.) I'd planned on eating it tonight for dinner.

So tonight I came home, fed the cats, cleaned the litter boxes, put my lunch together for tomorrow, got the dry ingredients ready for my smoothie, emptied the trash in the bathroom and office, started a load of laundry ... and then opened the fridge to get my dinner.

Only it was missing!

My DH apparently saw it in the fridge and wondered what it was, and then ate a few bites ... and the rest was history. Smile So, I guess I will be getting some more Soy Curls. Smile (I had planned on not getting them again.)

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Tomorrow night is the Trans Siberian Orchestra Concert!!!!!! I'm just a *wee* bit excited. Big Grin

We're going to be in a hurry, so will be doing a quick stop at a Hardee's for dinner. It will still be a treat, because L town has no Hardee's. (I love their Mushroom Swiss burger w/o the burger. DH teases me he's going to contact them to find out what the sauce is made with - I told him NOT ON HIS LIFE to ruin it for me like he did with cornbread stuffing (uses chicken broth ...) For some things, I'd just rather not know. Smile

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I forgot to mention - I won $9.67 in my Stepbet, and just started a new one on Monday. It's amazing how motivating losing $40 of my limited spending money motivates me to get my steps in! Big Grin

A Few Days Left of Stepbet - Learned Something

November 5th, 2016 at 02:40 am

Just 3 days left of my Stepbet. It's looking like the earnings will be around $10. I'm planning on doing another one, but not until after DH and I get back from Chicago.

Yes, we are officially going to Chicago next Wednesday and Thursday. Driving. Partially to buy DH a car, and partially for a quick get away. I'm thankful Friday will be a holiday for me. Sleep!

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Something sad at work today. One of the new employees who I really liked was let go. She was within her 6 month probation period. Frown Not sure why.

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At work I learned something else today - about copiers.
When you put paper into the drawer, you should do it "seam side" up. (the seam referring to the paper covering the ream of paper.) You also should do something called "fluffing" the paper (i.e. adding air pockets.)

All to avoid something like this:


(Kind of beautiful in its own way I think ...)
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Still going strong on the no soda ... though I had a real test a few days ago - the first day the bus routes changed. STRESSED OUT! But I persevered and bought some carbonated water from family dollar instead. (and ... chocolate.)

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Only 13 days till Trans Siberian Orchestra!!

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The other day we had a backpack come in to Lost and Found, and inside it was a Nevada Barr book - one I hadn't read!

I picked it up from the library today. Big Grin (on CD so I can load it on my phone to listen to while walking or in the car.)

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I bought some parsnips today. I plan on making them for dinner on Sunday. Smile I've never had them, so it should be interesting.

I also bought a bag of fresh cranberries last week. I put about 1/4 cup of them in my smoothie on Wednesday. Blegh! Yesterday and today I only put 3 or 4 ... much better. Smile

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DH emptied out the transmission fluid from his Honda (which he drove through high water last May?) in an attempt to get it working again. It didn't work.

So now he's on the hunt for a used transmission. He thinks he may have found one two hours away for $150. He just needs to find out if it's vtech or not?

If he can get the car going again for $500 or less, then it should be worth it. Otherwise, he may be ready to sell it. (It's a 2001 Honda with around 149k miles.)

Still Kicking

October 18th, 2016 at 01:17 am

So, it's been about 9 days since my last entry. It's been busy and tiring and stressful ...

But ... I'm still doing well with no soda, and fairly well with the DD. Almost finished with week 3 of Stepbet.

Last week I had several pizza indulgences which I think my system did not like at all. Hence being sicker than I have been in a long time this weekend. I'm only now really recovering.

I've told DH I want to lay off on any pizza for a good while. And cheese. Not sure if it was the cheese, the grease, the white flour, or bad pineapple topping ...

I hadn't really wanted pizza the last time, but DH *really* wanted it, so I gave in. Ugh.

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We were going to go to Denver on Sunday for a car, but DH didn't get enough sleep, so we scrapped the idea. I was so glad because I really didn't feel like driving there and back in one day. At all.

I just wish a car would magically appear within an hours or less drive that was PERFECT for what he wants.. So this car search would be over.

This coming Sunday DHs work is having a 2015 Christmas party ... catered by Outback Steakhouse. Yuck. DH actually wants to go (to the first part at least - second part is a party bus - double yuck.) So ... I'll eat something before we go and see if they have some kind of non-alcoholic non-soda drink ... dreaming, right? Smile (water of course ...)

The following Sunday I have 3 - 4 hours of overtime at work putting new schedules on the buses, and then I'm volunteering at a local church event celebrating world food cultures. That's going to be a long day.

Last week I went out to IHOP by myself, and then I went and saw Sully. I really needed an evening out.
(I liked Sully, although there were parts of it I was going ... come on already! Part of it may be that it was pretty late and I was tired though ...)

DH and I had a pretty frank health discussion. He told me that he pretty much has decided to not really make any changes in his habits yet ... because he has time. My insisting/nagging/conjoling him to at least try something different obviously would not work ...

He also told me he'd rather take a pill than do a diet change.

So ... I guess that's it then. I can't force him to do anything. Sigh.

--
So ... today I found a job possibility with the city ... pays $2.50/hour more. Same hours. Working at the public library - doing some of what I do now, but adding in a lot more MS Office type work. Not a librarian position (those all require weekends, which I can't do.)

So ... I'm applying.

I don't know how I'd get off for an interview if it came to that. The next two months both of the people who cover my responsibilities when I'm gone will one or the other be gone more than they're here.

I guess if it's meant to be, it'll work itself out. the money sure would come in handy.

DD 32/33 - This and That

October 8th, 2016 at 02:22 am

I think I'm getting into a pretty good routine now. Most days 70-80% of my food consumption is whole grain/fruit/veggie/nuts/low-processed. Now at over a month without soda.

I saw something on the YNAB forum today called a My Soda Pop (or something like that.) For $75 you could get this reusable kit to make your own carbonated water/juice/soda. Same idea as the soda stream machine, but more environmentally sound. I was interested in it til I saw the price ...

Step Bet - Week 1 (ends Tuesday)
1/2 stretch days, 2/4 active days

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I went and looked at my American Express card offers after seeing what CCF posted. I had the Boxed offer a cable/internet offer. These will help me get to the $25 cash out (currently sitting at $16.)

At boxed I bought toilet paper and Madras lentils.

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Our poor kitty Baby, the oldest of the brood, doesn't seem to be feeling too well. Thursday night he lost his lunch, and then wasn't interested in the wet food dinner. This never happens. He's a true chow hound.

I made a vet appointment for Saturday morning. I hope it doesn't take too long, because I'm supposed to be doing an announcement for my Sabbath School group at the beginning of service. (Not looking forward to ... but am not going to have to say a word - just be moral support to my teammate.)

I'm wondering if we are saving enough towards the vet category ...

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DH and I both had dentist appointments this week. DH didn't think he'd have any issues since he's not had a cavity in 50 years ..... So, when it came time to renew dental insurance this year, I dropped it for both of us.

Wishing I hadn't now.

I had a clean bill of teeth health. My DH on the other hand has a receding gum line. He'd mentioned this to me, but I hadn't realized that was the same as gingivitis.

So ... at his appointment they wanted to do what is called a "deep cleaning." Something which would take at least 2 2 hour appointments and cost $150 after insurance. And this is only AFTER he gets clearance from his family doctor (blood pressure) and his orthopedic doctor (shoulder replacement.)

He feels it would be way too stressful to accomplish this before October 31 (end of plan year.) So ... we are going to hold off on it til next plan year. Hopefully he'll have his blood pressure better under control by then too. Sigh.

---
DH and I had a long discussion Thursday night. It ended with me saying that IF he found a vehicle that just absolutely SINGS to him, then I would be willing to move a certain amount of money out of the fence fund. (Also, IF he'd commit to keeping the vehicle meticulous so good resale value later.) I did also make sure he realized that it *could* mean that the fence wouldn't happen right away next spring - unless he sells some of his electronics.

This coming week we are going to be going on a short excursion for car hunting / short get-away. Either to Chicago or Denver depending on which area has the most possible cars to look at.

It'll be nice to get away even if just for a short bit. (2 days) Hopefully we'll come back with two cars so the car search will be over for a few years... (This is why I prefer to buy newer models, so that I can buy once and not have to deal with the search again for a LONG time.)

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On Sunday we are going to be signing our wills! Also, our DNR statements. It will be good to have that all done. And for free too. Smile (My church's larger organization, called a Conference, has a trust and wills department that does this for church members - all they ask is that the church is remembered in some small way in the will.)

---
I've borrowed a bunch of books on DIY foods, "easy" vegan cooking, etc from the library. So far 3 books into it, and I'm not terribly impressed ... I am thinking of getting a nut milk bag to make my own milk and butter. DH may roll his eyes a bit ... we'll see though. Smile

I went shopping at HyVee tonight - picked up bananas, apples, brussel sprouts (at Dh's request!), chia seeds, and a couple other things I don't remember. $22.xx

---
Oh! DH gave me a nice surprise Thursday. When I got home, I found out that after his dentist appointment he had stopped at the local ABC (Adventist Book Center) to see if they had my fave Wham. Big Grin They didn't, but he brought home some other TVP product for us to try.

I was really surprised because I wasn't sure he'd really heard me when I'd asked him if he'd stop by there sometime if he was awake and out during their hours .. because I was really craving me some Wham. He heard and he remembered. Big Grin

DD 25/26/27 - September Spending, October Budget

October 1st, 2016 at 11:05 pm

Still doing pretty well getting my daily dozen in most days. (At least about 70 - 85% level.) Still holding strong on no soda.

I'm working on my meal plan for this week, and plan to get some Kale to try out Ceejay's kale chips, and try out Kashi's idea too.

I found a recipe for making baked apple slices in the oven (rather than the dehydrator) so might try that too.

My grocery budget for the first week at least is going to be helped somewhat by a generous gift from my church's ladies group - a belated housewarming/wedding gift. My walking buddy brought it over last night - two kinds of ravioli from Trader Joe's, organic marinara sauce, veggie meatballs, salad mix, can of black olives, two baguettes, a set of measuring spoons and cups, and a silicon spatula. All in a container which can be used as a serving dish.

Pretty neat. Smile

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Okay, September wrap up:
Mortgage - 526
Extra Principal - 25
Natural gas - 26
Electricity - 139
Phone - 52.27
Water/Sewer - 86.82 (bi-monthly)
Internet/Cable - 54.95
Netflix - 10.71
Groceries - 296.91
Car gas - 274.49 ($50 or so for MN trip)
Tithe - 130
Giving - 30
Car Maintenance - 129.48
Clothing - 23.45
Phone/Garmin replacement - 25.93 (new Garmin warranty, back-up phone DH)
Household - general - 46.95
Pets - cats - food/litter - 70.95
Pets -cats - medical - 24.39 (felliway dispenser)
Pets - non-cats - food - 13.49
Fitness - 41.85
Laura birthday/entertainment (trans siberian) 108
Date night / eating out - 63.85
Catifying - 15.87 (materials to attach cat tree to wall in living room)
Laura fun money - 19.39
Student loan - 51.38
Medical debt - 178

Money was set aside for multiple categories not shown above .. because nothing was spent in them for now. Smile

---
We had our October budget meeting on Thursday night. It was kind of fun due to my 3rd paycheck and overtime hours. Smile We put $200 into each of our spending money categories (been getting about $40 each), an extra $300 into repaying medical debt (actually have enough to pay half of it in full right now - just need to find a card DH would qualify for with a $1k spend and good sign up bonus, or even a $500 spend with good sign up bonus ...) We also allocated extra to some other categories.

DH agreed to do a $100 extra principal payment to the mortgage after I explained to him how making the little boost payments would save us huge amounts of interest / time in the long run.

---
DH made the commitment to only one 20 oz soda per work night, and I have made the commitment to not taking more than one servings worth of chocolate/junkfood into the office at a time. This will be helpful to both of us.

Ok, I need to get my walking clothes on and get out there before it's dark. Smile May go ahead and do some grocery shopping tonight too. (Since I did some cleaning last night before my walking buddy came over ...)

DD 23/24 - Thinking About a Dehydrator

September 29th, 2016 at 02:54 am

Still going strong on no soda. Smile

The light duty person has been diagnosed with per-diabetes and high cholesterol, so we have been doing a lot of talking about diet, etc. She's a big meat eater, so I suggested she may want to try cutting back on meat by using it as a condiment to her meals, as well as cutting out/back on dairy and eggs.

I've been doing fairly well with the DD. The one item I'm having trouble with is getting my greens.

That's partly why I'm thinking about getting a dehydrator - so I can make Kale Chips (maybe spinach ones too?) Then I can use them to dip in my homemade hummus. Taking care of greens and beans! Smile

I'd also like to do dried apples like my dad's friend Pete does. Every time I go out to CA, I come home with bags of died apples. So addictive. Smile

I found one on Amazon for $50 I like, but plan on checking Craig and FB first. DH thinks that's a good idea in case I end up not really using it. Smile

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I got an email from the Achievmint app today telling me how many points I'd earned. I've been ignoring them because I thought that I'd earned the max number of rewards. But today I decided to see why they kept sending me emails.

Well, I guess they restructured their program so that even people like me (who earned $200 from them) could continue to earn rewards in $10 increments. I'm halfway to the next $10! Guess I'll start tracking my water again. Smile

--
Also last night I decided to look at the Bounts store ... and was able to snag a $10 CVS card! I tried to get a second one, but it wouldn't let me add it to my cart.

---
I stopped at a Dollar Tree yesterday (Tuesday) and was disappointed to find that most of their frozen vegetarian selections weren't available anymore. Frown At least they had a good selection of frozen fruit.

I also bought 4 plastic canisters to put rice/beans/quinoa, etc. in. I need to buy some more, and also find my sharpie so I can label them. Smile

---
I got a reply back from N e l n e t. They didn't answer whether they accept 3rd party checks or not, but they told me here to send a payment ... So, I guess we can try and see?

DH needs to recertify for the IBR plan. If it's based on 2015 taxed income, he should be okay still. By next year when it'd be based on both of our incomes together, we'll already be in student loan repayment focus so it won't matter. Right now we are focusing on the medical debt.

(Citi gives the option of sending rewards money to either a student loan or a mortgage. Otherwise, I'd send it to the medical debt. The medical debt has no interest, but the interest on the student loans is negligible, and the mortgage isn't bad either. I just want the medical debt gone first. Even if it doesn't totally make financial sense. Smile )

DD 21.22 - Vegas Out, etc

September 27th, 2016 at 12:27 am

Now I am at 3 weeks of no soda!

I got home from grocery shopping on Sunday, and then went out for a walk. Just as I was getting to the house, DH calls me to find out where I was.

We ended up going to check out some more cars around town, and in Home Depot to check out week whackers, etc.

By the time we got back home, the majority of the time I'd planned for cleaning/cooking was gone.

So ... DH cleaned out the kitty boxes (bleach) while I got dinner on and did a few of the cleaning tasks I'd planned.

Dinner was eaten about 9 p.m. That's not late for DH, but is way late for me.

After dinner/cleanup/conversation, DH asked me to help him figure out the blood glucose meter. Yes, the thing I had gotten him nearly six weeks ago.

What a bizarre and un user friendly contraption that thing is! Finally about midnight DH had had enough and decided to try to find some youtube videos to figure it out. I was beyond exhausted.

Today I managed to get my lunch put together, and breakfast made, so that they were both within the DD guidelines.

--
Why is the Vegas contest idea out?

Well, on Sunday before I went grocery shopping, I stopped by the gym to do my initial weigh in and to ask some questions I had from the packet.

The guy who I talked to had no idea what was in the packet. For example, the packet stated that you could another facility, but would just need to have proof of that. He told me you could ONLY work out there.

So today I emailed the main contact person to clear up the confusion. He said the same thing! Even though the packet contradicts that.

This, plus a few other things, led the light duty person and I to agree to forget this whole thing.

I am thinking about joining Planet Fitness, which would only be a short distance out of my way on the way home from work. And only $10/month. DH thinks this would be a good idea as well.

DH also suggested that maybe I could go use the gym membership I already have (and have to pay til March) on the weekends when traffic wouldn't be such an issue. He's got a good point. Now, just to do it.

--
I'm probably going to go to bed not too long from now. I've a massive sinus? headache, probably partially triggered by the short night's sleep.

DD 17 - 19; Short Road Trip, Vegas Contest

September 24th, 2016 at 02:32 am

I'm still managing to stay away from soda. I'm finding out again, like other times I've managed to go more than two weeks avoiding it, that it gets to where I'm not sure why I wanted it in the first place. I'm at that point now - where a sip of DHs Cherry Coke doesn't even tempt me.

As far as the Daily Dozen - I'm still doing fairly well with it. I think I may modify it a bit ... such as making beans a 1/2 cup per day UP to 3 servings. Eventually I may work up to 3 servings daily, but most nights all I want is something simple like a bowl of cereal and maybe some fruit. When it gets colder, it'll be easier too ... soup or a sweet potato w/beans, etc.

DH didn't like the spaghetti squash too much. We have 3 mo I'm going to try making a spaghetti squash "pizza" and see if he'd go for that. I had lots of leftovers to eat this week because DH wasn't too keen on any of what I made on Sunday. I'm going to have to toss some of it, because I couldn't even eat it all.

One thing going to work on this weekend is coming up with a meal plan mainly using what we already have on hand, but using it in a different way (to make it more palatable to DH.) He was mentioning to me that he thought we shouldn't be buying more perishable items until we used up what we have. (I didn't say that if BOTH of us were eating them ....)

*Exercise - Fallen a bit short on this this week, due to 2 days of evening meetings and a road trip. Got in a 30 minute walk today though!

--
DH may have found his winter vehicle - just an hour away! Thursday when I got off work DH called me and asked me if I wanted to take a road trip to O city to see the car. Although I was pretty tired and really wanted to get a walk in, etc., I said yes.

It's a 98 Subuaru - not sure how many miles - $1400. Needs new tires and a driver's side mirror and the windshield replaced. DH was supposed to call the dealer today to talk to them - I forgot to ask him if he did or not.

I really hope this car is workable. A 1 hour road trip is much preferable to a 12 hour roundtrip!

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One of our local gyms is running a contest starting on Monday for a trip to Vegas. You enter as a team of 4, and earn points based on exercise, tracking food, weight loss, participation in nutrition events, etc. You get free access to their gym for the duration of the contest.

The winning team of 4 gets a 3 day/2 night trip to Vegas. Airfare and hotel only.

So ... I got the light duty lady to agree to partner up with me - we'll be assigned two more people.

Doubt we'll win, but it'll be fun anyway. Smile

(This contest is mainly a marketing gimmick to get people to join their gym - it's a new company taking over the locations a defunct gym.)

It's free. Smile (Although you can earn more points by buying stuff at some place, or also by scheduling a chiropractic consultation / visit (sponsors).) I may go ahead and do the chiropractic thing - check to see if a visit would be covered under insurance. Smile

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I ended up getting 6 hours of overtime this week! Two meetings from 5 - 7, and then a 3rd meeting I wasn't supposed to be at initially, from 3 - 5. Due to my union contract, that 30 minutes of OT HAS to be 2 hours. Big Grin

2 of the meetings had about 125 people each, and one had 49 .... lots of twiddle the thumb time at that one.

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I received my signup bonus for the AE Charge card - 25000 points plus another 1000 for my "purchase." (paid medical debt) Let's just say I'm underwhelmed at the choices.

Most likely we're going to go with using it as Amazon credit. 26,000 points translates into $182 at Amazon.

Or we may keep it around in case we do some traveling, and then we could use it on a more dollar for point basis at hotels com.

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I'm going to try contacting N e l n e t again tonight to see if they accept a 3rd party check. I've already sent them two emails through my husband's account (that I set up for him online ...) with no response. (student loans)

DH and I agreed that if we don't get a response within two weeks this time, that we'll send the $600 in rewards from Citi to the mortgage instead. That'd be more than a one-month payment. (The mortgage company responded to my inquiry within about 6 hours!)

Once that finally clears out the rewards points, then I'm going to check into having that card changed into the Double Cash back card (that doesn't have an annual fee.)

DD 16 - Houston, there's been a delay

September 21st, 2016 at 02:22 am

No Soda. About an 80% on the daily dozen. Chocolate bought and consumed.

--
The day didn't start well. I tossed and turned more than slept. Then when DH got home he tells me he's decided his car is "safe" for a 6 hour shift, so wouldn't be using mine. After a 2 hour "discussion" he promised to come straight home and change cars if he had the slightest hesitation about the wheel bearing. (DH got home about 3:20 a.m.)

As soon as I turned the lights on at work, I had a customer - one of the agencies. I later found out that I gave them the low income version instead of the full fare. I was blurry eyed and a bit foggy AND had two calls on hold before I'd even logged in. uGH.

After lunch I found out that the route changes are being postponed til November 1. Citing that the city budget has not been passed.

This is a mixed blessing. On one hand having more time to finalize prep will be very helpful. On the other hand, we have spent a massive amount of time advertising an Oct 3 start date. Now we get to explain that there's a new start date...

BTW - if anyone has an interest in bus driving, we are looking for drivers. ASAP.

---
I helped out the first open house about the new routes tonight. 120 people showed up! Less than 7% sounded disgruntled, and of those, most of them we were able satisfy them.

It was actually kind of fun. Tomorrow I get to do it all over again. 4 hours overtime, thanks much. Smile

DD 14 - Cooking disaster and other fun

September 18th, 2016 at 11:57 pm

I had my first real test today regarding soda... DH got a Mountain Dew from Runza while we were out looking at car lots. I was thirsty, but I had water with me. Not even a sip. Smile

So today is going to be difficult to assess.

This morning when I got back from my walk, I didn't want to just make a smoothie. I wanted something a little different. So I decided to make "ice cream" using my usual smoothie ingredients, except less liquid and more cacao powder.

Unfortunately. I way overdid the cacao powder and no matter what I added, I couldn't get rid of the bitter taste. I managed to eat maybe half of it, one painful spoonful at a time.

Like my husband likes to say - Laura, taste and add, taste and add. Ugh.

--
My great northern beans turned out pretty good I think. 25 minutes in te Instant Pot. Smile My hummus is ok, but I really need to find my food processor so I can make it smoother/creamier.

Another disaster - I put a spaghetti squash in the IP to cook for 6 minutes. When I cut it open, I realized it needed more time. But .... the outlet isn't working anymore! I tried resetting it, but did no good.

Hopefully when DH wakes, he can figure it out.

I have tofu "steaks" marinading right now, and probably should get the veggies in the oven for roasting.

I would have gotten more done today, but DH woke around 11 and wanted to go around the car lots. A ride with DH is much more appealing than cleaning. Smile

We found one vehicle he liked, but it didn't have a price tag. I'm betting it'll be way out of our price range. We'll see I guess.

Post 2 - DD 12 and 13- Legumes & Healthy $$$ Mortgage!

September 18th, 2016 at 01:43 am

Today makes 13 days sans soda. I don't really miss it that much.

I did buy and eat some chocolate on Friday, but much less than normal. I actually ate an apple instead of eating the chocolate right away .... Smile

I'd say Day 12 was about a 85% and Day 13 about a 65%. I had leftover pizza for lunch today (from Thursday Little Ceasar's) and it wasn't all that appetizing.

I was going to go on the Saturday afternoon hike with some fellow church members today, but after I finished my earlier post and started to get ready, I realized I just wasn't up to it.

Instead, I took a 90 minute nap.

Even after getting up from my nap (to see DH off to work) I still wasn't feeling very good. So, no walk today. Frown

I'm really hoping I'm feeling better by the morning because I'm way behind on cleaning, and I need to get food ready for the week. Tuesday and Wednesday will be late evenings for me (helping explain the new bus routes to people) and I don't want to derail my healthier eating.

I'd really like to hire someone to come in and assist/push me to get the cleaning done. Maybe some organizing too. Also have someone help me figure out how to make the house smell better ... Sigh.

----
I did some grocery shopping the last few days. DH agreed that if I made a big pot of Great Northern Beans, that he would eat them throughout the week. (This was after I read to him the section on how people were able to eat 1/2 cup of legumes daily on top of their regular intake, without it causing weight gain. In fact, it caused the opposite. Plus helped to regulate the blood sugar, etc.)

The beans and chickpeas have been soaking since Friday night. I am going to take them out of the water in a few minutes. Maybe use the Instant Pot for the GN beans so hubby can start eating them. Smile

I bought from our local "Farmer's Market" store - almond milk, spaghetti squash, eggplant, red onions, apples, oranges, 2 lbs of Great Northern beans, 1 lb of chickpeas (going to make hummus and roast some too), 1/2 lb of Brazil Nuts (eat 2 a day to help with thyroid, plus heart health), two Medjool Dates ($$$$$$) and some other things I can't remember. $26.xx

From HyVee, 3 candybars (3 for $1), red seedless grapes, ?? $13.xx

From Dollar Tree - multiple bags of frozen broccoli florets, frozen asparagus, a couple spices, etc.

$9.89

From another local grocery store (Russ) -
bananas, ten different spices/herbs (ground mustard, bay leaves, chopped basil, ground ginger (to keep at work), sesame seeds, ....

$14.40

I also looked at buying Chlorella and liquid B 12 ... but couldn't stomach the cost. I was thinking about buying some fresh kale too, because the fresh/non-bagged stuff was on a good sale, but I didn't know for sure what was the kale I wanted (3 varieties) - I wanted to try making Kale chips. So I didn't get any.

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I'm about halfway through How Not to Die taking notes. Some of the recommended stuff is SO expensive. I'm thinking I'll stick to the recommendations that are a reasonable cost, and then IF something happens to me, then I can go for the more expensive stuff (like Chlorella ...)

A part of me is really frustrated that I'm feeling so poorly even with having been eating much higher amounts of fruits and veggies for nearly two weeks, and little junky food.

I'm not giving up though. Something has to work to get me feeling energetic again. Maybe if DH sees it working for me, he'll be more willing to expand his choices as well...

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Redeemed a $25 Walmart gift card today from SBs.

Also used a $30 Petco gift card I earned last month by setting up "repeat delivery) to order some grain free cat food and more litter. Cost after rewards and gift card - $6.86

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Almost forgot! The mortgage FINALLY posted to my credit reports! I got a call from the fraud alert place my company uses that there were two alerts - one that the mortgage had been added, and one about the inquiry from Chase.

DD 11 / DHs Appt / Work etc

September 16th, 2016 at 12:01 am

Day 11 of no soda consumed.

Chocolate was consumed, but only one piece. (a Hershey Nugget - so very small piece - leftover from yesterday)

Was hungry waiting for DH to wake up (still waiting ...) and had an apple and some triscuits w/hummus.

Had Little Ceasar's for lunch ..($10). DH wanted it, and I felt like going for it since he hadn't eaten in more than 24 hours ... I have two slices left for either dinner or lunch tomorrow. Mushrooms and pineapple (my usual toppings)

Depending on what we end up doing for dinner, I'm at about 60% today. I'm okay with that since it wasn't a normal day. Smile

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DHs appointment - His colonoscopy went well. It was pretty quick overall once they took him back. The nurses were great - one of them was someone he went to high-school with! DH was a little embarrassed to have her see him in the procedure.

My appointment - For some reason the lady who usually sticks me in one shot, had to really dig around today. Ouch.

---
So between the two appointments, I went to work for about 2 1/2 hours.Busy busy busy. Wow.

Our new route maps came in, and I got to help move out the old boxes and move in the new ones ... in my dress work pants with my hair down.

So, even though I didn't go on an actual "walk" today, I think I probably burned as many calories. Sure sweated enough!

I really like the lady who is doing light duty. She's really trying. She used my computer a little bit today (I'd shown her the basics yesterday.) She told me that I need an assistant.. Big Grin

The phones are pretty busy due to the new routes. Complaints, people wanting to know when they can get the printed schedules, people wanting help figuring out their kids new routes, etc. etc. But lots of complaints. Plus the normal calls of course.

DD 10 / MN trip

September 15th, 2016 at 01:38 am

Today I scored 91% on the daily dozen.

Mainly lost points due to only walking 30 minutes.

I also ate chocolate. Mainly because I had some left from yesterday's purchase.

Must only buy single serving sizes. Must not keep extras in house...

I finished listening to the book this morning on the way to work. After work I stopped at the library and picked up the hard copy. I plan on taking notes on it tomorrow while I wait for DH's procedure to finish.

I tried a cup of water with ginger and a bit of honey tonight. Not too bad. I might buy some ginger to keep at work in case I feel one of my bad headaches coming on.

Someone told me that possibly they *could* be migraines, even though they don't last more than 6 or 7 hours (the worst part at least) and are helped by sleep, dark and a cold cloth.

---
I'm kind of looking forward tomorrow - most of the day I have off from work. In the morning accompanying DH to his appointment, then go to work for two hours, then go to my own doctor appointment (getting my iron retested.)

I'm really curious to see what the retest is going to show. I still am not a ball of engergy, but I do feel like I have a little more energy than I did before.

---
DH found a car he thought he wanted (winter delivery car) in Minneapolis. He decided since he was going to take Wednesday night off from work anyway (knowing he was going to need to be near a toilet ...) he decided to drive out there to check the car out.

So, this morning around 4 a.m. he headed out. He hadn't asked me to get cash out for it, and was bemoaning how frustrated he felt not having cash on hand to just go buy a car if he found one.

I told him I'd be okay with taking out a certain amount of cash that was already budgeted for car replacement to keep in the house. It wouldn't affect our interest earnings *that* much.

He seemed happy with that.

However, we still had to figure out how he was going to pay for the car.

I didn't want him to put it on our daily use card, because that would put us close to 60% utilization. So I tried to set up the new Chase card which actually has a higher limit than our Citi card. ???

The phone activation system didn't recognize the card number. The website activation didn't recognize the card number. Finally, I called the customer service number and got the car activated.

DH got on the road. He got back home about 6 p.m. and told me that he ended up NOT getting the car.

Sigh. (of relief partially ... wasn't looking forward to driving to Minneapolis and back on Sunday ...)

So, he's back on the hunt.

Friday I'll probably go ahead and take out the balance of the car fund to help alleviate DH's frustration.

It's a small thing to compromise on. Smile

DD 8 and 9 - Getting Ready for DH's Appt

September 14th, 2016 at 02:08 am

Going on 9 days of no soda! I almost gave in to temptation today, but told myself that no, I didn't need it. It was just habit - in CVS, get a couple of sodas ...

Day 8 I had about 79% of the Daily Dozen, and today I had about 98%.

I tried adding a 1/2 cup of oatmeal and 1/2 cup of black beans to my smoothie ... Hmm... interesting. I will have to experiment with how much liquid (was too thick.)

In listening to the book when I went on a 40 minute walk in the rain this afternoon, he was talking about the health benefits of ground ginger.

Headaches/Migraines, Menstrual cramps, PMS symptoms, etc., etc. I'm wondering if it would help me with my sinus headaches ... Doesn't hurt to try, right? Smile

---
I hadn't spent any money this week since Saturday (ok, did buy some stuff from Amazon yesterday - silicon baking mats, a cookbook for the InstantPot and Miso)

This afternoon though I had to stop at CVS to pick up my DH's prescription for preparing for his colonoscopy. $50. Ouch.

I'm really trying to keep myself out of there unless there is a *really* specefic reason to be in there (like picking up a prescription)

I managed to get out with just buying a *little* bit of chocolate (which, yes, I ate ...)

I'm almost finished with listening to How Not to Die and now am waiting for the hard copy from the library. There's so many things I want to take special note of, but he goes so fast sometimes, or my "person" who tells me how long I've walked, etc. cuts in for 20 seconds+ ...May end up buying a copy ... (if I can find it used)

Day 7 Daily Dozen / Actiivity

September 11th, 2016 at 08:03 pm

Although it is only 2:40, I already know what I'm eating the rest of the day, so I figured I'd go ahead and record it here. Smile


++No soda consumption
++No chocolate consumption (ate it all last night ...)

Beans (3 servings) ...........3/3
Berries (1 serving)...........1/1
Other fruit (3 servings).......2/3
Cruceferious Veg (1 serving)...1/1
Greens (2 servings)............2/1
Other Veg (2 servings).........2/2
Ground flax (1 serving)--------1/1
Nuts (1 serving)---------------1/1
Spices (1/2 tsp Turmeric)------1/1
Whole Grains (3 servings)------2/3
Water (5 servings)-------------5++/5
Exercise ......................65/45

I went for an approximately 65 minute walk/jog this morning - about 3.6 miles. When I got back I had my fruit smoothie -frozen mango/berries and a banana with flaxseed, chia, protein powder and my new additions of turmeric and cinnamon ... and an incident with the black pepper. OOOO Lesson ... do not remove the spice container lid, especially not black pepper.

Let's just say that even though I attempted to remove most of what went in, judging from the taste, I was not altogether successful. (Seeing as how I'm not a big fan of black pepper in the first place ... but am trying to like it more ... Yech.)

I'm going to snack on some broccoli and hummus here in a little bit to tide me over til we get back from the Wills and Trust meeting.

I marinated and then baked a bunch of tofu "steaks" for dinner, and am roasting a pan full of bell peppers/onions/broccoli/eggplant/butternut squash/spinach right now. I'm also baking some sweet potatoes for my lunches this week.

In a bit I'm going to cook some brown rice to also add to lunches this week.

I'm also soaking some cashews which I'm going to blend with some nutritional yeast flakes to make a "cheese" sauce for the roasted veggies/tofu steaks.

Hoping DH will like this .. trying to change it up a little. Smile

---
I finally figured out a good solution for my dust mop /bucket issue. A dishpan! I put a good dose of murphy's oil in the dishpan and some water and stirred. Then got mopping (and scrubbing ... of course by tonight there will be new cat chuck spots to take the place of the ones I scrubbed up ...) Worked perfectly. Smile

--
Got our bi-monthly water/sewage bill. It was nearly $24 more than the last one. Yelp. I had to massage a number of categories to fund it, but I found the money. I will probably just set aside $50/month for it from now on, rather than just $30. Then once I have the actual bill, I can reassign the money to other places. Smile

Day 6 - Daily 12 / Received Chase card / Katrina

September 11th, 2016 at 03:41 am

+++
No soda consumed
2? servings of fruit

Checked on Google to find out what Dr Greger's Daily 12 consists of - had heard him mention it in the book, etc., but I'm not there yet. Smile Only on Chapter 12.

Apparently there's an app to help you track it too ...
The Daily 12 is a list of things he feels important to get in ... daily. Smile (Dr Gregers Daily Dozen)

Beans (3 servings) ...........0/3
Berries (1 serving)...........0/1
Other fruit (3 servings).......2/3
Cruceferious Veg (1 serving)...0/1
Greens (2 servings)............0/1
Other Veg (2 servings).........0/2
Ground flax (1 serving)--------0/1
Nuts (1 serving)---------------1/1
Spices (1/2 tsp Turmeric)------0/1
Whole Grains (3 servings)------1/3
Water (5 servings)-------------3/5
Exercise ......................10/45

Saturday Score: 17/67 ~39%

Not my best day to start scoring ... wasn't feeling very good and didn't eat terribly good for me stuff, other than at my first meal (cereal w/banana, watermellon, whole wheat toast w/pb)

We won't talk about my "dinner" .. except to say that chocolate and pizza ...

---
I went to a local grocery store tonight (partly to get a Totino's ...) but also picked up some more hummus, snap peas, oranges and ground ginger. Spent about $15

--
Sunday we are *finally* meeting with my church's wills and trusts guy. This is our third appointment - both of the previous ones were missed because of me ... (spaced the first one, was during house buying process ... had to cancel the second one due to coming home from work early sick)

I'm realy curious to see how this works. DH and I spent some time discussing who we'd want our executor to be, and who'd be an alternative, etc. We both alreaady know what we want done if we die (cremated and ashes spread to the wind) but probably need those wishes written down somewhere in case we both go at the same time.

I'd like to set up a trust of some sort for animals, maybe have it go to the local no-kill cat shelter or something. DH probably would like that too (this is if we both go at the same time.)

----
I got my Chase Rewards Unlimited card in the mail today. Just need to activate it now, and send a $500 payment to DHs medical debt. Then probably by next statement will have the $150 cash back. Smile Which will then be put towards the medical debt as well.

Anyone know how long it should take for a mortgage to show up on your credit report? My credit scores all still say "No recent installment info" ...

I've had the mortgage since June...

I'm also looking for a good sign up bonus for a card DH could qualify for. He has some dings on his report in the last few years (before we got back together)

I probably need to wait awhile before opening another card (looking at the Citi Double Cash back card ... though I wonder if they'd switch my current Citi card (with an annual fee) to the Double Cash card (with no annual fee) ... Hmmm.... with no credit pull.

----
I was reading something on the MMM forum on Friday that got me intrigued about some of the aftermath of Hurricane Katrina. I checked a few books out from the library, and have put a few more on hold. None of them though seemed to deal with what happened in the stadium those few days - the rumors I heard about that seemed the most horrific ... so was kind of curious to see if anyone had written about the reality of it. Will have to see though.

Day 4 and 5; Job ? Update

September 10th, 2016 at 03:58 am

+++
Day 4
No soda bought or consumed
Got in 4 servings of veggies/fruits

Day 5
No soda bought or consumed
Got in about 8 servings of fruits/veggies
Tumeric/Cinnamon/black pepper in smoothie

- - -
Day 4 and 5
Too much chocolate bought and consumed. Frown

Am thinking that I am going to keep the focus just on eating lots of fruits and veggies and no soda. Not worry about the chocolate intake for now.

--------------------
Thursday when I got to work boss pulled me aside and basically told me what I'd planned on saying to her .. Wink That it made the most sense to put the extra person at the extra desk/table rather than me.

The phone didn't start working properly til today - after a bit of magic by the phone/IT guy.

Extra person I think hadn't caught that the plan had NOT been for us to be sharing desk/phone space. At first she was wondering if I'd had an issue with her invading my space, or if my boss had a problem with her.

I told her that no, it had been the plan from the beginning to have her at a separate phone/space, but that we hadn't figured on "retired" person being here doing training and using that extra desk/space.

She seemed to accept that ...

So, essentially I guess this isn't that big of a deal. Maybe more of a miscommunication between my boss and I.

I can deal with the situation as it is now for the next 4 or 5 weeks. Hopefully with less chocolate intake then the last few days ...

Thank you everyone for your thoughts/comments/suggestions. They all are greatly appreciated.

Day 3, Work Question (What Would You Do?)

September 8th, 2016 at 12:17 am

++++
30+ minute walk
Smoothie with cinnamon/tumeric
Got in about 7 servings of fruits/veggies
Didn't buy or drink soda

--
Ate chocolate (bought yesterday)

----------------

So ... I like most things about my supervisor. There is just one thing that has slightly irritated me over the past two years. Almost every time I come back from taking a vacation of more than I few days, I find my office space / work supplies rearranged.

I get told that this is done because the way I have things arranged don't make sense to my supervisor and she can't find anything.

(When I am gone, she basically does my job as well as her own. Just she isn't logged on to the information line, so there are somewhat less calls to answer.)

So ... I sort of get this. I get used to the changes, put some things back where I prefer, and move on.

Only to have it happen again the next time.

Oh well. Not a big enough issue to bring up.

But ... a month ago or so I'm told that one of the bus drivers is going to come in and do "light duty" by answering the phone. She would wear my earpiece and I would still sell passes, etc. I was also told that I would "get" to sit at the extra desk.

Um... ok. I didn't like this idea very much (other than not having to answer the phone constantly) but I decided that if it was only for a few days, then I would just deal with it.

It turns out, that it didn't happen.

Until yesterday.

I had a lot of mail in orders that came in over the holiday weekend, needed to enter the work order reports for August, and a few other things - which I needed my computer for. Also, with just a few hours of listening to the light duty person answer the phone, I realized I needed to be there..

Plus, the extra desk is presently occupied by our "retired" accountant who is training our new accountant.

My boss was gone yesterday. So, I stayed put at my desk in my office space. There were multiple times where both lines lit up, and I tried to explain to her how to hear that, and how to deal with that ... but she for some reason couldn't hear the beeps ...

So today my boss comes back and is wondering why I'm sitting at my desk with her. I explain why and she's fine with it.

Then a little while later she comes in and tells me that the others in the back were complaining about the phone not being answered. Um ... not much I can do about that!

So the IT guy attempts to install a second phone line towards the back of my office space, by the lost and found cabinets. I'm told that this phone will be for me. That they'll set up a table or something for me there to work on. Um .. okay.

So .. the person who has no computer skills and is doing what comprises 50% of my work most days, will be sitting by MY computer and using my earpiece. While I will be sitting in the back of my office space with just a phone and a table.

No. Sorry, that just isn't going to work. Not only would I be bored to tears, but there are multiple things I do as part of my job where I NEED my computer.

The phone isn't working yet, so I'm still at my computer. But ... this person is talking like she's going to be here for at least the month of September.

If it was just for a few days .. I could deal with it. But for an entire month? NO WAY JOSE!

I already feel like I get the short end of the stick with absolutely no privacy in my office space. People are constantly walking back and forth in the back of my office space (to the conference room area, lunchroom, bathrooms, etc.) I don't mind this, really. But because just by virtue of being at my desk, anyone walking into the lobby assumes I'm available to help them, I can't make personal phone calls at my desk, eat lunch at my desk, etc. I HAVE to do that in the lunchroom.

I feel kind of ... maybe, disrespected? Like they think I shouldn't care about giving up my space for someone else. Like they can make changes to my space without asking me if I'm okay with it - it's more important for the space to make sense to them - people who spend less than five hours a week in my space.

I'm seriously, seriously irritated right now. I want t approach my boss tomorrow about this, but I'm not sure how best to do it.

We have a pretty good relationship overall, but still, I want to be careful.

I thought about asking her how she'd feel if she was told that she was going to be given an assistant, who was going to do half of her work, and be given her desk space, while she would be relocated somewhere else without all the tools to do her other 50% of the work. Or, how would she feel if she came back from vacation to find that someone had decided to redesign her office for her - to make that space work better for the person redesigning the office.

I'd really like to ask her if they're trying to get me to quit. But I don't really think that's the case. I think she's just not getting how this is sounding/feeling to me. (There's very little that makes this job tolerable. Putting me at a table with just a phone and no computer will drive me beyond bonkers with boredom.)

Please SA, your words of wisdom would be greatly appreciated.


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