Another weekend gone by

Hope you had a fabulous weekend! Mine was busy and productive. I ate well, slept well, got to exercise, had a date with my husband and did a lot of things around the house. Here’s a quick recap :

 

Fitness : We had nice weather and I wanted to be outside.

  • Saturday : boy, was I motivated ! I ran 8K then went to the gym and lifted some weights. Running behind Parisian firemen is motivating.
  • Sunday : 30 minute Jillian Michaels DVD + one hour power walk


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Food : my husband did most of the cooking

We had lamb with potatoes and broccoli, monkfish with broccoli and veggies, cheese.

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Date night : my husband is part of a scuba diving club and Saturday was their annual get together. We first went bowling. We like to bowl, but do not do it often and are not that good.  A guy we were playing with broke 200 ! Impressive.

We then went out to dinner at a Guingette, an “Open air Dance Hall”, along the Marne River in the Paris suburb. It was a really fun experience and I will write a full post on it.

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Van Gogh painted a picture back in 1886 titled  ”Guingette”.

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I got a lot done. Got my quilt up !

 

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And also went to Ikea because I wanted to replace the cushion on our chair. I found exactly what I wanted. I don’t go often because I go for one thing and come out with 10 additional items ! To go with my new white plates, I also bought bowls and mugs. I love the color. I also got some baskets and miscellaneous kitchen things.

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We also watched Pitch Perfect (again !) and Frozen. How was your weekend ? anything planned for the upcoming week ? I am on vacation as of next Friday, can’t wait ! Have a great week everyone !

 

Finding the time

I am usually not a procrastinator, but it all depends on how important the task is to me. I work long hours and my free time during the week is spent either exercising, cooking, at the PTA or with my family.  My free time on the weekend is spent doing the same, in addition to groceries, laundry, cleaning, and blogging.

 

But there are some things that I just don’t get around to doing… My mother recently made me a wonderful wall quilt and sent it to me from the US. It has been over the back of a chair, waiting to be put up, for probably almost two months, I am ashamed to say. She asked me recently, kindly, when I was going to put it up. So, mom, I promise to hang it before the end of the month!


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At the same time, I told her not to feel bad. Here is the list of things that have been on my to do list for several days, weeks, months…

 

Days :

  • I ordered a book from Amazon for my daughter. Only to realize that I had already bought it, for her sister. I have yet to sent it back.
  • ironing… my basket has been sitting in my living room for a while.

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A month or two

  • I bought some spring pyjamas back at the Gap in February. Top, pants, tshirt. As it was winter, I didn’t get them out until about beginning of March. That is when I realized that two of the three pieces had the theft device attached. UGH. Of course I do NOT have the receipt. The bag has been in my car for at least 6 weeks. Not sure they will take off the devices, but I will try to get to the store to see.
  • I re did my kitchen back in February.   I bought all new plugs and light switches., only for the electrician to tell me they were not the right ones. The bag of plugs and switches is still in my car. Waiting to be returned.

A little longer

  • My daughter needs to have her wisdom teeth out. She had X-rays back in June. I spoke to my dentist about it back in November. I have yet done nothing about it. Mental note to make an appointment for April vacation.

 

A lot longer

  • We got a new couch almost a year ago. I have not gotten rid of the old one.
  • I want to get 2 chairs upholstered, so the fabric goes with my new couch. I’ve been looking for fabric since August. Still no real luck. And I haven’t looked that much. I should say I looked at fabric in August, but not since. So here is the laundry on my chair that needs to be upholstered.

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However, there are other things that were on my list, that I got done over the past 6 months.

  • New curtains for my living room
  • Pruned my geraniums and cleaned my balcony
  • Bought new plates
  • Bought steak knives
  • Replaced the carpet in my kid’s bedrooms by hardwood floors

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So as I told my mom, please do not feel badly and take it personally. I do what I can as a busy, working mom… but I promise, I will do it this month as I have a staycation coming up. Overall, I did accomplish quite a bit so let’s look at the glass half full. And the rest, well I will get  around to it one day. These guys come first :

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What have you been wanting to do that you have not gotten around to ? Any weekend projects ? Are you a procrastinator ?

 

WIAW – the real thing

Hello everyone ! How is your week going ? I actually remember to take pictures of my food at each meal Wednesday, so I thought I would do a WIAW post. Thanks to Peas and Crayons for letting me jump on the bandwagon.

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Yesterday was what I would call “the real thing”…. totally transparent. Firstly, I got up REALLY early. This guy woke me up at 5 a.m. and so around 6, I got up, wide awake. In this picture he is cute. I didn’t think so at 5 a.m….

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So, I figured if I had some time, I might as well make a batch of pancakes, as my stash was getting low. I have two favorite go to resources for pancakes. Peanut Butter Fingers has an almond based recipe I love, as does Tina at Carrots n Cake. So I made a big batch.

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I had a busy work day, very little time to make it to the cafeteria, so I got a salad and had some yogurt for dessert. My salad had beets, carrots, lentils, tomatoes, lettuce, cukes + tuna and egg for protein.

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A quick snack in the afternoon….

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…and I got home really late from work. I was starving. I probably should have eaten a bigger lunch or more almonds. My husband did the cooking. We love TopChef and he was inspired :

 

 

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But he was inspired only by the presentation because the chicken came out of a bag, and that is a piece of chocolate crunch, turned over. He did make carrots…. Not my choice of dinner but beggars can not be choosers. So I actually ate several pieces of chicken, carrots and several pieces of chocolate ! I didn’t want to complain that it wasn’t “healthy” enough… he had make the effort to put together dinner, and made us laugh in the process with his presentation. And he is a great cook, but not very motivated during the week.

Have a good Friday everyone !

 

Paris Marathon weekend

Hello everyone ! How was your weekend ? How has your week started off ? It was the Paris marathon this weekend.  It goes through the Bois de Vincennes, three minutes from my house. Its quite a serious marathon, so few people are dressed up. I always wonder how someone can run 42.195 km dressed as a banana ! I can not help thinking the costume must be very bulky, uncomfortable and cause major chafing.

 

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I have never run a marathon, my longest distance is a 20K. I am so impressed with people who do, who have tried, who have trained, who have survived…what a fabulous accomplishment.

My brother in law spent the past four months training for his first marathon. 50,000 signed up, 42,000 participants this year, and it was open to pretty much anyone. Next year they are putting into place a lottery system, like in most of the other big marathons. So my brother in law was lucky to have a spot.

In the goodie bag there was candy and pistachios… an odd combination. There was also a head lamp. Not really sure why, as the marathon is during the day…

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With my sister in law and our kids we went and watched for an hour and cheered on the participants. The women, the international participants and those dressed up got special attention. The weather was perfect.

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My brother in law did not want his picture on my blog, so I respect that. Too bad ! He finished in the 50% percentile. Not bad for a first marathon !

 

So even if the weekend was busy, I got my exercise in and had time to cook :

  • Friday evening : water aerobics
  • Saturday : 9 km run
  • Sunday : 45” weights + ab work

 

Two quiches, pork roast, roasted veggies, butternut squash with chicken and lentils :

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But most of all, family !My girls and their cousin, me & my sister in law.

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A great weekend overall and congrats to all of those who ran the race !

 

Would you run a long distance race in a costume ?  What would you choose as a costume ? Are pistachios AND candy a weird goody bag ?

Have a great week !

Finding your motivation

Ever wonder why we stick with healthy living ? what keeps us motivated to regularly choose veggies over French fries or a more often run rather than sitting on the couch ?

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I don’t talk much about my job but I am in an industry that I love, and have loved since day one. I am still motivated when I get up in the morning to work and have been for almost 18 years. Motivation keeps us striving to be better, seek solutions and challenge ourselves, even if things get tough.

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I recently made a list of why I like my job  : variety, its challenging, my colleagues, international environnement, everyday is different, it has offered me opportunities, I can take initiatives. When I looked back at it, I immediately saw the parallel with the reasons that have kept me motivated to maintain a healthy life style over the past 15 years.

  • Variety : important so that boredom does not set in. The gym, running on a treadmill, step aerobics, DVDs, workouts from blogs, low impact aerobics, weights, biking, running outside, swimming, water aerobics, yoga…building my exercise routine around different activities not only prevents boredom but also works muscles differently. Muscles like variety also.

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  • It challenges me and pushes me out of my comfort zone : I started water aerobics two years ago. My husband goes to the pool every week and has for years. He always encouraged me to go and try. I hate(d) the pool and always had. After much encouragement (5 years or so) I finally signed up for a water aerobics class. And I LOVE it. It’s a different kind of workout, gentler but tough and it makes my body feel different than the gym. So glad that I tried it. Same thing with push ups :

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  • My colleagues / the people I work with : Healthy living and exercise has allowed me to meet people that I normally would not have, people who share the same love and interests as I do. At work there are 50 of us who run the Parisienne, a woman’s road race every September. People that I don’t usually work with or see that I have connected with due to running.

 

  • International : I am inspired by everything that goes on in the US and France, and feel I am influenced by the best of both worlds.

 

  • Every day is different : every workout is different, every meal and how it makes me feel is different. I have learned to listen to my body, and give it what it needs on a given day. Even if its ice-cream !

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  • It has offered me opportunities :  having a healthy lifestyle has given me the opportunity to take care of my mind, body and I am sure I will live longer for it.

 

  • I can take initiatives : I find that exercise and clean eating are more often a guideline and you can adapt them to your own personality. There is not one rule that really needs to be followed. Healthy eating, but with a little bit of wine and chocolate thrown in !

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And overall, whether it is work or healthy living, both should make you feel good about yourself.

 

Motivation comes from within. Circumstances can be motivating or not motivating, but finally, its you and only you who fuels your motivation. Find what motivates you in your job, in your volunteering, with your kids, in your relationships and draw the parallel to healthy living and lifestyle…. You might be surprised how similar they can be.

 

Have a great day !