It’s All About That Cake!

Its all about that cakeYes, I was channeling Meghan Trainor when I thought of this blog post because birthday parties are all about that cake! It’s got to be sweet, decorated perfectly, and moist (I tried to think of different words because I know some people don’t like that word but I couldn’t so deal with it). There’s also ice cream to accompany the cake not to mention all of the other food on hand. Where am I going with this?

My youngest son turns 11 next week and we’re having his birthday party tomorrow afternoon. Tomorrow will be a day full of celebration, food, family, and friends. Oh, and, I can’t forget the gifts (just in case he reads this post one day). The day is all about him. We also have this tradition in our house where the birthday boy (or girl) gets to have whatever they want for dinner (within reason because no one eats junk food for dinner).

I’ve been worried all week about this party because his favorite cake is also my favorite. Chocolate cake with white frosting – I can taste it now. I’m not a big cake person (pun intended) except when it comes to chocolate cake with white frosting. It’s my weakness and I know it’s going to be very difficult for me to avoid.

This is going to be my first true test and I’m not sure how it’s going to go. But, I do know this – I’m not going to deny myself a piece of cake if I really want it. There’s absolutely nothing wrong with me having a small piece of cake to celebrate my son’s birthday as long as I limit myself to one small piece. I may even scrape off the frosting to save calories and prevent my blood sugar from spiking. We’ll see about that. 😉

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How to Shop for Healthy Foods with a Family

How to Shop for Healthy Foods with a FamilyIf you’re anything like me, grocery shopping is a huge pain on a normal day. Trying to eat healthy and manage weight loss makes grocery shopping even more difficult – especially when my family tags along. We have a limited amount of time together so we always grocery shop together, which makes it somewhat difficult for me. I’m a list maker and I tend to only go down the aisles that house the items on my list. My husband, however, is the total opposite. He goes down each and every aisle, whether we need anything or not, just to look, he says. Here’s how I shop for healthy foods with a family.

The first thing I do is make my plan of attack. I think of the supermarket as the battlefield because it’s chock full of temptations that can very easily sway me. My husband and I are strategic now when it comes to grocery shopping. We divide and conquer.

I’m a paper and pen list maker but I’ve adjusted to make things a bit easier for my husband, who, for whatever reason, despises writing things down. We use the Out of Milk app (Apple & Android) on our phones to make our grocery list because we can share it. He tackles the inner parts of the store and I handle the outer perimeter.

One thing that I always do before heading out to the grocery store is to make sure I’m not hungry. I grab a snack or make sure I have lunch before I walk through those doors. If I don’t have something on my stomach, I tend to buy more crap, which defeats the purpose of shopping for healthy foods. If I’m not the least bit hungry, I always throw a baggie of cashews or something in my bag before we go. There’s nothing wrong with noshing on a snack as you’re shopping. 🙂

I try to plan our meals for the week before heading to the store, too. This not only helps keep me on track with my food but it’s good for my budget, too! We only buy what’s absolutely necessary to get through the week and whatever spices or condiments we may need. I plan all 3 of my meals because it’s easier for me. I don’t like having to think too much about what’s for breakfast, lunch, and dinner. Of course, dinner is the only meal that my family participates in planning, which is okay. I can always make my portion of dinner healthy even if they don’t.

That’s how I shop for healthy foods with a family. It’s not always easy but it’s nowhere near as difficult as I thought it would be either. That was just another excuse I made for not shopping for healthy foods before, but that’s not the case now.

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Stop Apologizing for these 5 Things Now!

Stop Apologizing for these 5 Things Now!Apologizing is something that we’re taught to do when we’ve made a mistake or done something wrong. It’s important to apologize when it’s necessary but how do you know when it’s necessary? There are many things we currently apologize for that we shouldn’t and it’s time to stop – NOW! To help you get started, here are 5 things to stop apologizing for.

Saying No

You don’t need to apologize for saying no to anyone. It’s important for you to set and keep boundaries with everyone in order to keep your sanity. Trust me, saying yes to everything gets old – fast. Saying no says that you have respect for yourself and that you’re more interested in taking care of yourself than being everything for everyone.

I usually feel guilty when I have to tell someone no but that feeling, eventually, goes away. It’s not a good feeling but I’d rather feel that bit of unnecessary guilt than resentment because I agreed to do something I really didn’t want to do or have the time to do.

If you can’t give 100%, why say yes? If you don’t have time, why say yes? If you don’t want to do it, why say yes? These are the questions you should ask yourself when someone asks you to do something.

Your Imperfections

By nature, humans are not perfect beings so stop apologizing for not being perfect. Always be true to yourself and embrace your imperfections because they make you who you are. Being imperfect allows room for growth and improvement and that makes us better versions of ourselves.

No matter what your imperfections are, we all have them. No matter what anyone says, no one is perfect and that’s a fact. Just in case you need a reminder, here ya go.

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Taking Time for Yourself

We all need time to refresh and recharge and that’s exactly what time alone does. I generally spend every Saturday alone and I relish every minute of it. Even though I’m usually catching up on housework, I’m still alone – not having to listen to anyone fight and argue.

Being alone with your thoughts and emotions provides you an opportunity to get to know yourself on a deeper level. Spend this time doing something you enjoy. For me, I get my chores out of the way first and then I spend the rest of the day reading, swimming (weather permitting) or whatever else I enjoy.

Another Person

Despite what you may think or believe, you’re only responsible for your behavior. If you do something that isn’t right, by all means apologize, but don’t apologize for another person. It’s not your place to take responsibility for anyone else’s behavior.

There have been times when I’ve apologized for my children but they’re the only ones I will apologize for – up to a point. I refuse to ever apologize for another grown person; they know how to behave. If they don’t, they’re never too old to learn.

Being Honest

It’s true – sometimes the truth hurts but there’s no reason to apologize for being honest. There’s a big difference between honest and being rude so be sure you’re aware of that. There’s no need to be rude so always be tactful. Being honest shows just how strong you truly are and that should be celebrated.

The Point

It’s time to stop apologizing for everything – especially those things that are out of your control. Furthermore, never, ever compromise your integrity for anyone else because it’s just not worth it. If you’re always true to yourself everything else will fall into place.

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How to Increase Productivity with Meal Planning

How to Increase Productivity with Meal PlanningIncreasing productivity isn’t just a solo sport – get your entire family involved with meal planning! Many people associate meal planning with weight loss, but it’s not just helpful for that. At the end of each week, my husband and I sit down and plan out our dinners for the next week and then we head out to the grocery store. So, how does this increase productivity?

With a meal plan, I know exactly what we’re having for dinner every night. There’s no thinking about it, no guessing, and no wasting time trying to find something to defrost. When it’s left up to me to figure it out, I inevitably take out something that no one else wants to eat. Meal planning eliminates all of that crap, which saves me a TON of time and energy.

I take it one step further for myself and plan out my breakfast and lunch each day, too. I’m trying to eat healthy and planning my meals helps keep me on track with my goals. There have been many times where I have cooked ahead and frozen foods so all I have to do during the week is defrost something. I usually do this during the weeks when we’re really busy in the evenings because it saves a lot of time.

When we’re planning the meals for the week, I have my Filofax on-hand so I know what nights are busier than others. Knowing what’s ahead for the week really helps us plan our meals better because, if we’re really busy one evening, I’ll cook something big the night before. Leftovers are a great way to still have a home-cooked meal without actually cooking. We try to cook 2 large meals a week so that we can have leftovers so there’s not as much stress associated with dinner.

Meal planning is also very beneficial to your budget because you’re only buying what you need from the market. I loathe grocery shopping and avoid it at all costs. By planning our meals, I’m able to head into the grocery store with a mission and I always accomplish my missions! Depending on which grocery store I go in, I have my list written down by aisle, so that I can save more time. I also group things together so I’m not walking all over the place – back and forth – spending more time than absolutely necessary inside.

If you use an A5 Filofax, here’s a free jotter download for you! I printed this on card stock and laminated it so that I can write on it with a dry erase marker. I also cut slits in the holes so I can move the jotter as I change pages. I always know what’s for dinner!

Download this FREE meal planner jotter insert for Filofax A5

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