Voyager Walk – Help Me Make A Difference — The Worn Bookmark

Hey guys! I’ve made the decision today to join in on the Voyager Walk, a 100 hour virtual walk that symbolizes the time is might take a family to travel by foot and bus to reach medical attention in Ghana. Caitriona Balfe, who plays Claire Fraser on Outlander, has created this challenge to raise money […]

via Voyager Walk – Help Me Make A Difference — The Worn Bookmark

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North Shore 2015 Vacation

The Worn Bookmark

From June 11-14 Ethan and I had a mini vacation in one of our favorite locations: the north shore of Lake Superior in Minnesota.  I grew up going there a lot with my family and he also did with his family.  The air is so much more fresh and clean.  It’s more peaceful and relaxing.  From the moment you hit Duluth on the drive up, you feel the weight of your normal life lift off of your shoulders.  Take a deep breath of that fresh, lake air and you instantly feel refreshed.  Although the trip was shorter than we would have liked, it was definitely what we needed!  On Saturday we met up with my parents for dinner.  They have been looking at buying property up there so they were up with a realtor for the weekend.  All in all we had a great time and are already looking forward…

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Whole30: 30 days of clean and healthy eating

Check out my brother and his fiance’s new blog about their journey during Whole30! As soon as Ethan and I can rid our house of all the processed crap food we already have we will be joining them! Big thanks to Steph for loaning me her copy of the book! Such an eye opener!

Change the way you think about your Diet

Hello!

Steph and Jim here to jot down some of our opening thoughts as we start our journey through Whole30. We previously had written about, albeit very little, our diet and our prior relationship with food. After further reading, our relationship has transformed and we are going to be making a drastic change. Our goal for the next 30 days is to have a better relationship with the food that we eat and to be generally healthier people. We are going to try and achieve this goal through the plan that is laid out by the Hartwigs in the book It Starts With Food. This all stems from Steph ordering the book from Amazon a while ago after following the Whole30 instagram page, among countless other reading. After Steph read this book and seeing all the testimonials, she brought it to me and said “We have to do this!” So…

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2015 New Year’s Goals

Happy New Year!  I hope everyone had a great New Year’s Eve last night!  We had a couple of friends over to celebrate.  Our friend Bill made us a delicious dinner!  Melon with prosciutto for an appetizer and carbonara for dinner.  It was so so so good!  Now today is the day I usually come up with my resolutions but I had them done a few days ago.  Instead of calling them resolutions though I’m going to call them goals, only because resolutions always seem to fizzle out by February.  So here are my goals for this year.

  1. Ease up on buying books.  Remember the library is only 2 miles away and I have plenty of books that I haven’t read yet but own.
  2. Get better organized for blogging.  I started off pretty organized but lately I’ve been flying by the seat of my pants.
  3. Pay off credit card by end of March.  I’m so close!  And then keep the balance at zero… If I buy something with it, pay it off right away!
  4. Pay off smaller student loan by September.
  5. No pop except for “special” occasions.  This one looks familiar!  I seem to try this one every year.  Let’s hope it sticks this time.
  6. Eliminate processed foods as much as possible.
  7. Get at least 60,000 steps per week.  I’ve been really slacking with my Fitbit the last few months.  I want to try to get back up there!

What are your goals for the year?

Back In Action

I’ve been away for a little bit.  Unfortunately my laptop has pretty much crapped out on me.  Luckily my husband is a computer geek so he helped me pick out parts to build a desktop PC.  The last parts finally arrived on Friday night so we spent most of the day on Saturday building it.  I took lots of photos.  I’ll be doing a post about the build, complete with photos but  I haven’t gotten around to uploading the photos yet though so it will be posted sometime this week.  I’m still working on getting all of the computer settings the way I like them.

So check back for a post about my new computer!

New Blog!

I’ve decided to start a new blog.  It’s called The Worn Bookmark and it’s all about books!  I’ve been spending most of this blog talking about books so I decided to just make one for books only.  I just started it yesterday so there aren’t many posts yet.  But I’ll be posting book reviews, reading challenges, book hauls, and plenty of other things.  So head on over to The Worn Bookmark!

http://thewornbookmark.wordpress.com/

Current Nail Polish Fave

So all summer I’ve really been into the neon colors from China Glaze (one of my fave nail polish brands). But at the moment I’m feeling much more subtle, plain, and elegant. So I’ve chosen a very very VERY light pink shade from Butter London. I love this nail polish but wish it was less expensive!! I don’t remember exactly how much it cost but I want to say it was around $14. Anyway, the shade is called Pink Ribbon.
My nails are pretty weak and love to peel so I’ve recently started using Essie Millionails and Essie Grow Stronger nail treatments to help. I started off with a coat of Millionails, followed by a coat of Grow Stronger. I did that yesterday to give it plenty of time to fully dry. I always have problems with nails smudging.
Then today I put on one coat of Butter Pink Ribbon. I let that set for a few hours while I watched a few episodes of the second season of Game of Thrones. Then I put on a second coat. I read for about 45 hoping the last coat would dry on it’s own, but no such luck. The nails were still tacky so I used China Glaze’s Fast Dry Top Coat to finish the process. That last one smells horrible but does the trick. I am now left with pretty pink, shiny nails.

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Clean House Part II – Bookshelf Re-Arrange

So like I said in my last post, part of my clean house project would be to re-arrange my bookshelves.  I went through all of my books, movies, and tv shows and picked out some to sell so I had some open space.  I decided that I wanted to re-arrange some of the shelves so that certain things would be more accessible downstairs, such as video games and dvds.  I decided that I wanted most if not all of our books to be upstairs because that’s where I usually read.  So I took some before photos of all the shelves.  Here they are…

Blu-rays

Blu-rays

DVD tv seasons

DVD tv seasons

Books

Books

Books

Books

Landing

Landing

Office

Office

Office

Office

Office

Office

Bedroom Shelves

Bedroom Shelves

So it took almost all night but I got it all done!  There are even some free spaces left.  So without further ado, here are the after photos…

Bookshelf from the landing moved into the office and filled with different books

Bookshelf from the landing moved into the office and filled with different books

Sookie Stackhouse books and Gone With The Wind collection

Sookie Stackhouse books and Gone With The Wind collection

Bedroom shelf

Bedroom shelf

Blu-rays

Blu-rays

Blu-rays

Blu-rays

Blu-rays

Blu-rays

Hubby's dvds

Hubby’s dvds

Hubby's video games

Hubby’s video games

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The Wheel of Time series by Robert Jordan

The Wheel of Time series by Robert Jordan

Harry Potter and Nicholas Sparks

Harry Potter and Nicholas Sparks

Tudors collection

Tudors collection

My Ireland collection

My Ireland collection

Stephenie Meyer, Hunger Games, Girl with the Dragon Tattoo trilogy and Jane Austen

Stephenie Meyer, Hunger Games, Girl with the Dragon Tattoo trilogy and Jane Austen

Office - filled with some of my favorite collections

Office – filled with some of my favorite collections

Office

Office

TV Seasons

TV Seasons

And a few of the kitties, because they’re just so darn cute!

Enzo!

Enzo!

Nika

Nika

 

Quick Update

I am happy to report that my lifestyle changes this time around are working! I have been going to the gym more regularly and going on walks outside if I am unable to go to the gym. I’ve cut back on the majority of the unhealthy foods I used to eat. I did not have any soda for 3.5 weeks! Since then I have had a few sodas every once in awhile but not very often. My weight has been slow coming off but I believe that is because I have been regaining muscle that I have lost over the years. I am currently down 5.6 pounds and it is continuing to drop. Normally I would have lost my focus and motivation a couple of weeks ago but I am feeling great! I’ve been using MyFitnessPal to track calories, sugar, sodium, fat, etc. It’s been a great help to me in realizing what foods are horrible for me.

One thing that has really helped me this time around is not getting overwhelmed by looking at how much total weight I want to lose. I’ve just been concentrating on one pound at a time. Another thing is that I am doing this so that I will feel better about myself and feel healthier. I am doing it for me and no one else. I want to live a long, healthy life.

I am very excited about all of this. Looking to the future of a healthy, happy life. 🙂

My Current Obsession

Within the last two weeks or so I have developed a huge thing for Downton Abbey.  I had purchased season 1&2 on dvd on “Black Friday” (which should not even be called Black Friday anymore since all of the stores are opening on Thursday night) but I had not watched them yet.  I bought them because I heard that it was a really good show and I’ve always had an interest in British history and what not.  In college I majored in history, but that’s a different story.  So two weeks ago, I felt a need to start watching it finally.  I enjoyed it so much that I ended up watching seasons 1 AND 2 by the end of the weekend.  I couldn’t wait to watch 3rd season so I immediately ordered it from Amazon.com along with the two books: The World of Downton Abbey and The Chronicles of Downton Abbey.

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I got free shipping so it took forever to get the package.  I finally got it in the mail on Monday.  I started watching 3rd season last night and started reading The World of Downton Abbey before bed.  I’ve already said how much I love the show but now I am going to talk about the book.

I love this book!  The book connects the show to actual historical events and people from the same time period.  It is very interesting to read about how the show compares to what was actually going on at that time.  There was so much detail put into the making of this show.  It’s great to see that kind of thing happening in a time when most people like taking short cuts for everything.  I haven’t gotten through the whole book yet but I can’t seem to put it down!  For those who prefer reading books with lots of photos, step right up!  There are many photos of the cast AND photos from the past. 

The book is divided into chapters, like most other books.

Family life, society, change, life in service, style, house & estate, romance, war and behind the scenes.  Then they have a cast list, a section on further reading, picture credits and acknowledgements.

For anyone who loves Downton Abbey and this time in history, I would definitely recommend reading this book! 

Side note, for all you Downton lovers… who are your favorite characters?

Mine are Anna, Mr. Bates and Sybil.