Meal Plan Monday

I decided to make some resolutions this year and I’ll keep adding to the list

Let’s add under number one:
Take my vitamins every day.
Make health appointments I’ve been putting off, dentist, doctor, optometrist.

It’s another short holiday week so I decided I’m going to try something different this week for Meal Plan Monday.

In an effort to save money I’m going to be digging through my cupboards, listing all the ingredients I have to work with then simply making meals from those ingredients.  I’m not going to plan any specific meal for a specific day and the only things I plan to buy this week are spinach, cauliflower, mozzarella cheese, and salad.

My hope for doing it this way is to be more creative with my menu and also to help me see I don’t need to grocery shop every other day.  Plus it’s fun to mix things up every so often 😀  Not having what I want to eat is different from not having anything to eat (If I repeat this enough it might finally get through my head).  If I want to get serious about saving money this is a big step.

Being close to so many stores makes it easy to walk over or stop on the way home from work to pick up a couple things.  The problem is I go over for two things and walk out with 7 things or 20 things so it’s time to stop the impulse grocery shopping.

whole wheat spaghetti
spring mix salad
green pepper
red pepper
can of chickpeas
tomato sauce
fresh green beans
frozen veggies
1/2 cup lentils
sweet potatoes
mozzarella cheese

This is my list of the main components of my menu for the week. I have sauces, flour, some basic pantry staples on hand. My fridge and cupboards are not overflowing with food but looking at this list already makes me realize I have plenty of food on hand to feed myself without making extra trips to the store.

I’m keeping track of what I’m eating so hopefully I’ll share what I come up with during the week. I made homemade pizza Saturday night so last night I finished up the last couple pieces. Tonight I’m hoping to get off work on time so I can run to the store for the items listed above and nothing more, then get in a workout (I’m taking my workout clothes with me so I can just go right when I get home), and make some dinner.

I’m a day late but hope everyone had a good start to another short work week! 🙂

The Resolutions

It’s easy to be lazy.

It’s easy to kick back on the couch, drink coffee, and watch Netflix all morning.

It’s easy to pretend like you’re doing everything you can to meet your goals when in reality you’re doing the bare minimum.

Last year I decided not to make any resolutions because I was already in the process of making serious changes in my life.  I shared what I wrote in a journal the year before so this year I will share a link to last year’s post, Resolutions.

This year I’m excited to celebrate the big changes in my life, new job, new city, new friends, new mindset but with all the celebration I recently realized I quit setting goals.  I didn’t stop thinking about things I wanted to do but I haven’t written anything down or taken any steps to actually accomplish the goals.

I was inspired by lists from a couple of different bloggers, 30 things when I’m 30 (prt 6) from Clean Cheater and  What are your dreams? from Juni Desireé.  Reading through their posts made me realize I didn’t have anything I was working toward, nothing tangible I wanted to accomplish, no dream I wanted to fulfill, so I realized that needs to change.

  1.  Continue to work on my health
    1. Work out at least 3 times a week
    2. Go for a hike or a walk that’s more than 2 miles at least one weekend a month
    3. Keep track of my eating for one month.  I hate tracking my food but I have an app and I think it will help me as I continue to refocus on what I’m eating.  I know it was a great kick start for me last time so I’m going to use it again starting tomorrow.
  2. Continue to promote my photography
    1. Set up a shop on Etsy or maybe Razzle to sell my photo cards and maybe some prints
    2. Post on my Facebook photography page at least once a week
    3. Post on my photo blog at least once a month
    4. Do at least 2 photo shoots each month
  3. Save money
    1. Revert back to the Plan.  The Plan was something my mom and I made up when I was having money problems in the past.  I’ll probably do a post on it but share some of the highlights as part of my goals.
    2. Work on paying off all credit cards.
    3. Create a budget, plan for all expenses.  I’ve lived here long enough to understand how much I’m spending on everything as well as a good idea of where I’m overspending so it’s time to get serious.
    4. Use more cash, less card.  Easier to overspend with a card.
  4. Continue to map my career path
    1. Learn everything possible in my current job
    2. Explore what opportunities are available
  5. Quit being a hermit
    1. Say yes more often.
    2. Don’t be afraid of new people or new experiences.

My goal setting just happens to coincide with the new year, although I’m planning to kick things off a little early by starting tomorrow.  I think if you’re inspired and motivated, why wait?  It doesn’t have to be a Monday or a new year or a new month.  It can be the middle of March on a Tuesday if that’s when you feel inspired to start making changes.

Technically I am starting today with number 5.  I’m supposed to go watch the football game with my cousins but I’m not really feeling like going out.  I don’t want to say I’m forcing myself but I told myself I needed to go for at least an hour to visit then I really want to I can leave.  It’s the getting out of the house thing that’s most challenging for me but I’m going to do it and it’ll probably be fun.

These are the big goals I want to focus on as we get ready to start a new year.  Nothing overly complicated just five goals with a few steps to help me reach each one.  I’ll be writing out a list with more specific details for my own personal use but this list is the foundation.

Feel free to share your goals or tips for staying on track and accomplishing goals.

Surviving Christmas

I was worried about my Christmas weekend on the west side of the mountains.  I had a couple cries about not being home for Christmas but kept reminding myself I was still going to be with family.  It’s just family I haven’t spent as much time with over the last 10+ years so I tend to feel like an outsider.

I know some part of it is my self-doubt.  I have a constant fear of being not interesting enough or of saying something embarrassing.  Even though they’re family because I haven’t spent as much time with them I worry about letting my guard down completely; however, I had fun this weekend.

The clothes I wore were fine.  I went with leggings and an oversized sweater, comfy but looks dressy.  I should’ve taken another pic before I left because I ditched the scarf, put my hair back, and put on some sparkly earrings.

1 Sweater

The food I brought was eaten.  I made green beans with garlic and lemon.  It’s going to sound silly but it looked like a legitimate grown up dish.  I was really proud of myself for actually cooking something instead of just buying something. 1 Green Beans

The present was fine.  It wasn’t the best, wasn’t the worst.  I ended up with this awesome ceramic Starbucks mug in the gift exchange.  IMG_0927.JPGI love it but it’s a little heavy for toting back and forth to work.  The lid is also ceramic and doesn’t close very well so it’s more decorative than functional but I love it and I’ll use it at home.

When I was at my Aunt’s house on Christmas Eve I mentioned not having a tree so she gave me a little tree she wasn’t using.  I loved having my little Charlie Brown Christmas tree.  The smallest things can help improve the festive spirit.  I was feeling a bit down when I came home that night and was alone but setting up the tree with the presents really helped.

Tomorrow I’ll be meeting my cousins to watch the football game at a local bar. I’m a bit nervous but also looking forward to it.  Before it was more challenging because I was on the other side of the mountains and didn’t get over here as often but now I can hopefully start building better relationships with this side of the family.

It fits into one of my goals of being more social but I’ll be going into that in another post 😉

It’s always funny getting older when your exciting presents are sheets and a handheld blender (can’t wait to use it!!!).  Last night I was so excited for my soft flannel sheets I put them on the bed, turned down the bed, and went to brush my teeth.  I came back to this… 🐱


It wasn’t easy but I finally got him moved so we could both get some sleep last night.

I was flipping through channels and started watching season one of Game of Thrones then couldn’t stop.  It’s not very Christmasy, although it is about winter coming XD

I decided to end with a meme andthis wasted at least half an hour.  If you’re a fan, google “Game of Thrones meme”  This was my favorite tonight.

ef2205c9ecccef6fb26e57fef98accb3Okay and a second favorite…64af61a123ca4f9547a8e3bb3a8db8f6Now I’m really done. Have a good night!  And Merry Christmas!!