Here is a very easy and delicious slow cooker recipe. I made it a few weeks ago and will be making it again this week! Enjoy!
Slow Cooker Balsamic chicken and sausage!
I would like to share with you my goals for the next 9 months. If you read my “Summer Fun” blog you know that my boyfriend is being deployed and we are having a contest. The contest is to see if each of us can meet our own personal goals by the time he comes home which hopefully will be June, regardless that is my goal month.
I have written down all my goals on a piece of paper and taped them to my counter top so that I can see them every day. I went in much detail with my goals. This is how I set my goals up:
1- WHAT –I wrote down exactly WHAT I wanted to achieve. I am a Crossfitter so I have goals beside each skill such as gymnastics like ring muscle ups, pull-ups, bar muscle ups ect. I also have a weight goal next to each lift. (Side note, it is a REALLY good idea to write down and keep track of ALL your work outs, times and lifts. If I never did that, it would be very hard for me to know where to start with my goals. Now if you are just starting, no worries, make sure you write down EVERYTHING you do in your work out. Write down lifts, number of reps, amount, how long it took you ect. This is VERY important for many reason. Most importantly to see if your routine is working. Are you improving? If you are great, if you are not…then you can go back and see what you need to change. )
2. HOW— I was very detailed on how I was going to meet each of these goals. This I believe is one of the most important parts to achieving your goal. If you simply have a goal, it will be hard to achieve it because you don’t have any direction on where to go with those goals.
My biggest challenge for my “how” is going to be getting up in the morning to work out. For the last 5 years I have been working out after work. It got me through the day, and through out the day I was excited to go to the gym. However, the unfortunate part was that number one, I was pretty exhausted at the end of the day. Number two, I could easily talk myself out of going to the gym. Or number 3, I had appointments that took precedence. Work also would take over too at times. To be true to myself, and see how much I really did go to the gym (because of course in my head it was “everyday”). I marked on a calendar each day I went to the gym. I did this for about 3 months to get a good average. Well, my everyday, was more like 3 times a week. That is A LOT different from everyday! The funny part is, I wondered why I wasn’t increasing weights in my lifts or getting that muscle up…hmmm maybe it’s because I was only going to the gym 3 times a week. Now, don’t get me wrong, 3 times a week is great! Better than most people in this world who are sitting on the couch and don’t move at all. However, for me to reach my lofty goals I need to be at the gym way more than that!
So, my friends, being to the gym at 5 is going to be a HUGE challenge for me! HUGE!! But, I know in my heart that if I want to meet these goals I have to go in the morning. Going after school will just not cut it because with my schedule (and laziness) I will not make it more than 3 times a week.
The other part of my how is my nutrition. I am most comfortable with this how in my goals. Don’t get me wrong, it is going to be a challenge. But, the cool part is that I know exactly what to do and how to do it:) This summer I didn’t do horrible by any means…well for the most part…lol…but let’s just say that if I want to increase weights in my lifts I need to focus on my nutrition way better than I have this summer:)
I have found that preparing my meals for the week on the weekend is MUCH needed for me. My week is so crazy that I just want to come home be able to pull something out of the fridge and eat it. I basically found out that making 3 meals for the week works great. I usually make something in the crockpot, in the oven, and then on the stove top:) I also make sure to have lots of snacks ready for example, grapes, carrots, celery, almonds, Lara bars, apples and almond butter etc. I bought a big enough lunch box that fits all my week’s worth of lunches. It actually works pretty slick! Don’t forget about snacks during the day at work too:)
3- DATES– What is the magical date that I will have that 6 pack:) If you don’t have a deadline, you will never reach your goal. I know that by June I want to meet my goal lifts and body fat %. I also wrote down each month from now until June and where I would like to be at during those months. I only wrote down the rest of August and September for now, because I would like to re-evaluate in a month to see how I am doing and what my body is capable of doing. This way I will know more realistically what my body can achieve in a month’s time.
I also understand that this is a journey for me to be a better athlete. I know that I am already a healthy women and know that a certain body percent is NOT going to define me nor is a certain weight on a barbell. With that said, having goals to be a better athlete is also healthy! In 9 months, when I am a better athlete than I am now, I know I have hit my goals!
Feel free to read more about how to make goals and achieve them by clicking any or all of the links below:
Until next time…get those goals written down!
As I was thinking about my nutritional goals, I came across this awesome article from Crossfit Impulse. It basically says, make sure your nutrition is spot on before worrying about what to eat before and after your work outs or any supplements you may need. Meaning, are you eating whole foods, good fats, good carbs, lean meats, nuts, and lots of veggies with no sugar or grains! Once you have your nutrition spot on then work on the other important stuff such as supplementing with creatine and fish oil. This article will explain their reasoning. It will also give some really good advice on how to deal with other individuals in your household who may not agree with your choice to eat healthier. This is a good read!
Until next time…be a leader and make good choices for you and your family!
Well hello my followers! I bet you thought I fell off the end of the earth…lol:) I had a crazy summer this year. As most of you know, I am a teacher and I have the summer’s off. Before you teacher haters say one thing about we teachers having the summers off…all I have to say to you is…The Univerisity of Northern Iowa has a great teacher program that you could enroll in and get your teaching degree and come and be in the trenches with us! I could go OFF on this matter, but that is not what this blog is about. So…I will continue my happy thoughts:)
Where was I, oh…my crazy summer. So school ended in June. EVERY intention of blogging more this summer. I ALWAYS have goals for myself not only for the summer, but also during the school year as well. My goals were to blog more, gym more, organize places in my apartment, and get my school things organized for the upcoming school year, go hiking and do more things outside, spend some time with my boyfriend, and family…oh and of course take some classes for continuing education.
Well, some of that did happen. For those of you who set goals for yourself, know that goals can change for good reasons to! This summer, mine did. But, in a good way I feel. So here is my summer…
•I spent a great deal with my boyfriend. Unfortunately, or as he would say fortunately, he is being deployed. I love this man with all my heart and pray he comes back safely to me:) God Bless America!
• Took some continue education classes….no pictures with this one…not that I didn’t enjoy them, just not enough to take a picture 😛
• Took a short vacation trip to Okoboji with my boyfriend and his family. He really enjoys his Hobie Cat:)
My boyfriend and his dad on the Hobie Cat:)
• Didn’t start the month off too great. It was a little scary actually. My dad has CLL – Chronic lymphocytes Leukemia. He was diagnosed with this years ago. Four years ago (I think it was), he went through his first round of chemo. It didn’t go too shabby considering. Then his lymph nodes started swelling again, and wasn’t feeling well. He was scheduled for chemo. Before his chemo, he was in the hospital for phenomena for a few weeks. Then that got better, so they thought, and he started his chemo. He went through 2 hospitals, the ICU with infection, he couldn’t breathe, multiple tests to figure out what was wrong, and to this day they really don’t know. Through prays he got better. He was in the hospital for 3 weeks, I think it was. So I went to the hospital as much as I could. It was very scary to see my dad in that situation. But he knew he was loved and prayed for and is full of faith:) We are all so thankful for our Savior Jesus Christ and his ability to heal my dad.
•Toward the middle of July my nieces came to visit. I have 2 beautiful nieces. The oldest is 16 and drove here, from 2 1/2 hours away for the first time to the big city of Des Moines, Iowa. She lives in a very small town of Brandon, Iowa. Look it up…you may just see pictures of the famous “Biggest Skillet in the World”. The youngest is 14 I believe:) I could be wrong, 13…IDK they grow up so dang fast. But, regardless of her age we had a blast. Shopping, eating junk food (yep I said it…off limits food and it was great), watching movies, laughing, Adventureland, and just chilling.
•More continue education classes. Again, no pictures here…must I say more:)
•My mom is an interior designer, and man she knows her stuff. She is so flipping creative it’s unbelievable. She can turn ANYTHING into ANYTHING. This year, I moved into a new room at school; into the Science Lab! Way more space and just awesomeness. Well, I wanted it to look really neat, comfortable and fun for my students to learn and for me to enjoy due to the fact I pretty much live there during the school year. So…it all began with just, “Mom, would you make some curtains for my new classroom”, of course she said yes. Then, ” Mom, would you make this shelf into a bench for my kids to sit on (Pinterest inspired), ” of course she and her husband did:) Then, it just went on from there. I pretty much told her what I was thinking and we put our heads together and viola got a really neat, comfortable, fun and amazing science lab for all of us to enjoy.
The BEFORE pictures….. ewww…
Now…the cool pictures…
As you walk into my room this is what the back wall looks like:
The LAB words are made out of aluminum and is backed with black and white cloth.
Above the cupboards are scientists and a quote from said scientist hanging from twine:)
Another place your eye may go to right away is this bulletin board. This is on the left wall of my room by my desk.
This says, “If you are not willing to learn no one can help you
if you are determined to learn no one can stop you.”
To the left of that bulletin board is my desk area.
The front is decorated with the word FOCUS. There is a small clock to represent the word “O” in focus. It is meant to be a little joke to my students. They should not be looking at the clock they should be focusing on the task at hand:) The bag hanging on the right of the focus says, “Don’t make me use my teacher voice”. The curtain in the back ground is made by me:) It was Pinterest inspired. Four different pieces of material torn and tied around twine. It’s pretty nifty:)
To to the left of my desk is my student’s seating area.
The curtains are made by my mom:) The bench is Pinterest inspired. It is a Target shelf made into a bench. The seating part is padded and wrapped in hefty duty material:) There are four pillows sitting on top. Two of the pillows are science inspired. One says “Be Nice” the other says “Keep Calm Do Science”. The cool part about those pillows is they are made with the elements from the periodic table!
This is my front table…
There are little funny science quotes each glued to a black and white flag that is strung across the front of my front table.
A closer view of a few of the sayings. One says, ” If you think your teacher is bad, wait until you get a boss.” The other ones says, “Somewhere, something, incredible is waiting to be known.”
This is by the door.
My step dad (AKA Joe) made this awesome cart. It even has handles and wheels! These are crates for each of my classes. .
This is a bulletin board to the left of the door.
Really neat cartoon type characters that display an element from the periodic table.
This is to the right as you walk into my room.
Each is hand-built by my mom and Joe. They are picture frames with something to represent science.
From left to right…
A light bulb to represent electricity.
Test tubes with colorful beads in each.
These are signs made by my mom as well. To show my students where their glue, scissors and items are at.
So…that’s my science room!
• The end of July I went to Okoboji with my boyfriend’s parents with out my boyfriend. But, I still enjoyed my time with his awesome family:)
This one says it all. I was having a ton of fun, and almost fell! Well, maybe I did….lol:)
So that was my July….
• First week in August I went to Estes Park Colorado camping with a friend of mine. We then hiked in the Rocky Mountains on the Twin Owl’s Loop. It was amazing and a good work out!
So much fun!
Well there ya have it my friends, my summer of 2016 in a nut shell:)
Going back to my goals for the summer:
My goals were to blog more, gym more, organize places in my apartment, and get my school things organized for the upcoming school year, go hiking and do more outside, spend some time with my boyfriend, and family…oh and of course take some classes for continuing education.
Did I accomplish those things…let’s see:
•More blogging- failed..but for good reason:)
•Gym more- failed…BUT was very active outdoors…swimming, skiing, biking, hiking…I was in the outdoor gym and loved every minute of it!!
•Apartment organized- I actually did do some. I just didn’t share any pictures. Too boring..lol
•School things organized Yes, I did get that done too, but again too boring to share.
•Hiking- That I most certainly did!
•Do more stuff outside -Yes I did!
•Spend more time with my boyfriend -Yep sure did !
•Spend more time with my family- Yes, with both my dad, mom, nieces, and grandparents! Even though it was with my dad in the hospital, I have learned that life is too short and call him almost every day to see how he is doing. I spent a lot of time with my mom working and doing classroom things. It was so much fun!
•Take classes to continue my learning in education- Yes, that I did!
The reason why I shared this blog with you is to show you that being healthy is not only just going to the gym, eating right, and staying fit. It is also appreciating what God has given us. The beautiful country he has made for us, the animals that are just amazing to watch, the family he has chosen for us, the strengths that each of us have to share with others to brighten their day, all the blessings that we tend to take for granted.
You may not achieve each and every goal you make for yourself, but those goals may just go in a different direction. I really wanted to get to the gym more this summer. However, the way my summer altered for me worked out great. My gym was the outdoors and it kicked my butt! Especially in the mountains! This just goes to show that you don’t have to be in the gym to stay healthy. Get outside and use the beautiful scenery and take a walk, run, skiing, swimming, canoeing, kayaking to stay in shape.
Revisit your goals every month. See what needs to be changed and what you want to keep doing. Once I go back to school, I wont’ be able to go outside as much. Therefore, the gym will be my place to be. Let some one know about your goals. Have a challenge with someone who you know you will answer to. My boyfriend and I are actually having a challenge. We each shared our goals with each other. Our goal is to meet those health goals by the time he gets back from deployment. I will share those goals with you in my next blog. He is one that I can’t let down and makes me be a better person.
Here is to new goals and new challenges and a new school year!!
Until next time…create those goals and let someone know about them!
I thought I would share my snacks for the week with you:
Until next time…eat the good stuff when you are hungry!
I have blogged about this wrap before, but I want to blog about it again because it is just so simple but yet delicious. I got it from the recipe Paleo Slow cooker chicken enchilada recipe (which is also amazing!). However, I fell in love with this wrap . I make a double batch which makes about 5 wraps. The following is what I use them for:
*** I basically use this wrap for anything that I would have normally have used bread***
Note- I like to make my food up in advance. I use the wraps for my lunches a lot, and about the 4th and 5th day they are not as fresh. I would recommend to make the wraps up right before you eat them, but they are pretty fresh for about 3 days!
Until next time…keep calm and make a wrap!
Sugar is in a lot of foods. To avoid it, we pretty much have to make our own food. Here is a good article that explains why sugar in moderation may not be the best idea either. Click here to read!
Until next time…avoid the sugar!