Thursday, February 28, 2013

October Muskoka Trip

As a birthday treat, Ian and I went to Lake Rosseau in late October last year. Yes, this post is a little late... but the trip was so wonderful. We had a fantastic time and can't wait to go back. I can't imagine what it would be like in the middle of fall.

Wednesday, February 27, 2013

Ian Gets His Shovel On

Puerto Rrrrrrrrico! (Mug #52)

Be sure to roll the Rs appropriately. I get a lot of the mugs gifted to me or purchased through others. This was mug was one that I could purchase myself! Before the flight home from my work meeting in Puerto Rico, I gingerly walked through the airport terminals to a Starbucks that had the mugs. I say gingerly because on my last day in the sun (of course!) I unknowingly burnt the hell out of my back and had to carry bags over my shoulders. Fun! 

Another Snow Day!

Tuesday, February 26, 2013

A Little Late (Mugs #50 & 51)

I've been meaning to post this for awhile... Even Ian was surprised. As I searched the mug cabinet for the one's that Judi got us, he was wanting to know what took me so long! Yeah yeah yeah... Better late than never... Ian's Aunt Judi travels a lot for her work and managed to get us Hong Kong and Frankfurt. The Hong Kong mug marks another milestone. It has overtaken the Dubai mug for the farthest distance from Kitchener. (7809 miles)

Monday, February 25, 2013


Last Thursday, I went to the lab and had blood work done. I also did a Glucose Tolerance Test. DISGUSTING. I haven't heard the details... but I got a call from my doctor's office that the numbers look better than they have before and I need to come in to discuss my anemia - shocking. I've never had to worry about results from blood work. My numbers were usually the same every time - slightly high white cell counts, pretty anemic. December's blood test was a little different and there was cause for concern on my doctor's part. This resulted in the gross glucose tolerance test and more blood work. I'm over the moon just to hear "numbers look better...". That's all I want. 

Brittany Upgraded By The Numbers 
Starting Weight: 308.2 
Starting BMI: 48.3
Current Weight: 288.6
Current BMI: 45.2
Goal Weight: 160

Best Invention Ever

I think any girl who has eyesight issues would agree - putting on makeup kind of sucks when you can't really see what you're doing. I got tired of bending over the sink to get close to the mirror. I also got tired of holding up a crappy mirror while using the other hand to put on mascara - I usually ended up jabbing myself in the eye. I saw this on a house decor site and fell in love. For $10 (in Canada... $5 in the US), you can get this lovely pull out mirror from IKEA that swivels and has a magnified side. It's a little stiff to pull out but feels pretty sturdy. Ian put it up and I'm terrified that one day I'm just going to rip it out of the wall... but so far so good.

Friday, February 22, 2013

Hard Evidence

...that Cooper loves his Aunt B! :P Oh and I think we already knew that Max was awesome 24/7.

Thursday, February 21, 2013

Anna Mae's

Last weekend we went with Ian's family to Anna Mae's in Millbank, ON. It's only about an hour away but feels out in the middle of the country. The Mennonite-run restaurant has simple but delicious food and the best cheesecake I've ever had (yes, I worked out the calories for it....). Some of us had little complaints about our meal - didn't get the usual rolls with soup, my caesar salad wrap had cheese on it when I said to leave it off, not enough gravy on the hot beef sandwiches that everyone else ordered, etc. Conveniently we are using this as an excuse to go back in a couple weekends. :P (This picture was from google. It was most definitely NOT 15 degrees Celsius... the parking lot is also not covered in snow and it happened to be snowing when we were there.) 

I had heard on the radio about a place close to the restaurant called The Orange Barn. I've been on a little bit of an orange kick lately. This place gets monthly shipments of citrus fruit and it's first come, first served until they sell out. The store is just a cold concrete building with people taking orders and then checking the box they give you. They have samples of the different oranges and grapefruit. A 20lb box of large navel oranges (direct from CALIFORNIA) was $15.50 - pretty sweet. :) I've had a couple already and they are fantastic. I gave some to my mother in law but the rest are down in the fruit cellar. Finally able to use that room for it's actual purpose - move over soda, canned goods and rice. (They don't look great in the photo but they are soooo good.)

We saw a lot of snowmobiles out and about... but it was difficult to get a picture of them as most were FLYING. We passed a few horse and buggies along the way as well. Hopefully we make it back there in a couple weekends - they are on a "meat schedule" and Ian wants to have their turkey dinner - shocking.. I know.


20 Down

I hit 20lbs lost yesterday and confirmed it today. Pretty cool. :)

Brittany Upgraded By The Numbers 
Starting Weight: 308.2 
Starting BMI: 48.3
Current Weight: 288.6
Current BMI: 45.2
Goal Weight: 160

Wednesday, February 20, 2013

Meet Camo and Oatmeal

The boys built bears last week. Cooper named his Camo and inexplicably Max named his Oatmeal. :P 

Tuesday, February 19, 2013

Happy Post Valentine's Day

Ian and I had a simple Valentine's Day since we just celebrated our anniversary. We had a "fancy" dinner - steak with a red wine reduction sauce, sautéed mushrooms, zucchini, red pepper, and onion and garlic mashed potatoes with green onion. It was fantastic!

Ian surprised me with a little gift. This t-shirt.+5 Points to those who get the joke.  :)

Monday, February 18, 2013

Family Day Workout

I worked really hard to earn this sweat drenched photo. 62 minutes. 615 calories.

Brittany Upgraded By The Numbers 
Starting Weight: 308.2 
Starting BMI: 48.3
Current Weight: 289.6
Current BMI: 45.4
Goal Weight: 160

The Scale

I've decided that I am only going to weigh in on Wednesdays. I found that I am probably focusing too much on the numbers. The numbers are good... but I step on the scale too much.

Brittany Upgraded By The Numbers 
Starting Weight: 308.2 
Starting BMI: 48.3
Current Weight: 289.6
Current BMI: 45.4
Goal Weight: 160

Monday, February 11, 2013

Hard Day

I was tired. Achy. Annoyed. Had to rush to the gym. Had to rush back from the gym. I just wasn't feeling it. But I still went. Had a very good workout. I did 9 total minutes warm up/warm down and then it was an upper body day. A good hour of strength training and I'm just beat. It is nice to know that I am done for the day though.

I feel the need to rant a little. We all know them. We all hate them. The guys - sometimes girls, but mostly guys - who feel the need to let you know THEY ARE WORKING OUT. Shocking I know... but I am fully aware that he is working out. I don't need to hear the grunting, the slamming of equipment, the moans and groans of some old dude who looks like he is about to give birth. Either grow a uterus and ACTUALLY give birth... or shut the hell up. (Clearly, I was more annoyed today than usual...)

Brittany Upgraded By The Numbers 
Starting Weight: 308.2 
Starting BMI: 48.3
Current Weight: 291.2
Current BMI: 45.6
Goal Weight: 160

Sunday Art Project

Now that football is over, Ian and I are looking for projects to occupy our time. For me, I picked a small piece for the kitchen to work on. The open end to our kitchen cabinets has had "placeholder" items on it. I got a black frame with a white mat from Ikea a couple weekends ago. I created this graphic that I'll have printed soon. Just something quirky for the shelf. :)

Sunday, February 10, 2013

Beautiful Morning

(Picture heavy post...) We woke up to an awesome morning... Ice fog had settled in our area and the pictures I got were stunning. I just have a point and shoot so they aren't as detailed as they could be with a really nice camera. But there were quite a few cars and people on the road doing the same thing we were. This was the first thing I saw:

I scampered out front and took a bunch of pictures. This is a closeup of the light by the garage. It's covered not nearly as much as other things... but gives you an idea.. basically little snowflakes attached to everything.

This is the front tree and grasses.

The sideyard trees and wrought iron fence were pretty coated.

The downspout near the front porch had some icicles coming out of it. Those were covered as well.

Here is the front of the house.... what you can see over the snow banks and through the fog.

Thankfully Ian was game for a Starbucks run. Oh, who am I kidding? Ian is always up for a Starbucks run! We knew that our favorite road would be beautiful. It didn't disappoint. 

Ian was my chauffeur. 

This is the field just outside the favorite road - a fair amount of snowmobile tracks.

Back down the road again...

This was down by one of the ponds. 

And I think this is the best picture. Hopefully the resolution is good enough... I am thinking about having this printed on canvas. So pretty!

I did take a video... it was from the car so it's a little shaky. Ignore the sound... it's just loud with the wind.

Crazy beautiful, eh?

Friday, February 8, 2013

Snowmageddon Update

Ian and I barely survived the day. It was hellish. Covered in blankets. Working from home. Warm house. Pfft. Crazy!

Backyard Update - Owly is very buried... He might become unburied tonight because of the blowing snow.... but he is most certainly not  happy.

The bushes at the edge of the garden wall are almost covered!

For whatever reason.. we decided to LEAVE THE HOUSE. (Missing an onion for dinner = doing weekly shopping on snow day). It was certainly interesting... Ian shoveled again before we left... it was about another inch on the driveway. 

This is the good road. Same with all the pictures.. it doesn't do it justice. It was fairly deep and pretty scary when another car came from the opposite direction.

Most of the trees look like this:

And we saw a couple of these: 

View while driving up our street. It seemed to be snowing harder at this point. Pretty sure the snow in the air right now is just blowing snow.

Ian took the second shift for shoveling. This time he didn't have the help of the nice neighbors. He said there was about 6 inches of snow on the sidewalk. (Yes, he is wearing his Quatchi hat!)

Pretty sure we are getting a snowblower next winter... 

Oh Holy Snow

This has to be the worst storm we have gotten since I've lived in Canada. There might have been something similar when I lived at Ian's parent's house... but, due to my life changes, I was pretty much oblivious to everything during that time. I'll try to get more pictures... but I just went out to shovel the snow.

I will admit that I was pretty pissed when I saw our neighbor using his snowblower to clear our driveway. I didn't feel like dancing today or going to the gym. I was really looking forward to getting some exercise this way. It turned out to be okay because there was so much snow. There was at least a foot and a half of snow on our driveway. After our neighbor cleared it with the snowblower, I went behind him and cleaned it up. On one side of the driveway, the snow comes up to my waist. Here is before and after I cleared the stairs... the pictures don't do it justice. There is at least 3 feet of snow on the top step. The fun part shovel some snow and then trying to clear the snowbank without dragging more snow down. (It was really the best I could do half frozen.) 

I couldn't tell these 2 other neighbors that I really wanted to shovel the sidewalk to get a workout. I only got a quarter of the way down before the neighbor across the street came and then the neighbor behind us started. Nice guys though...

And this is me following the 30 minutes of shoveling. Everything is sore and my ears feel like they might fall off. As I write this... there is a lot of snow falling. Big fluffy flakes... We have to go out later... so there might be more pictures from that.

Painfully True

Typical George R. R. Martin
George R. R. Martin, the Killer

Wednesday, February 6, 2013

Where Did January Go?

This is post #1501. :P I've been MIA for the month of January on this site. Where have I been? The best answer is "working my butt off". At the end of November I quietly starting to look at where I want to be in the next 10 years. The last 10 has been an even mix of fantastic and awful. I started working. I did a u-turn across the United States. I got a very good job. I met a gnome online and moved to Canada to be with him. I lost a loved one. I married the gnome and we built a house together.

In that entire time I would say 90% of it I have felt uncomfortable. It's not a big secret that I am carrying far too much weight. I'm not the kind of girl to "embrace" it. I never accepted it. I was always uncomfortable, anxious, embarrassed.... every bad emotion - almost all of the time. Who wants to live like that? So in December - not really the best time to change habits.... - I quietly started looking at ways to change. For me, it comes down to technology. Sad that I needed something like technology to help my efforts... but having something that is tangible is the sole reason why I'm feeling better. The combination of my Polar H7 Heart Rate Monitor, Digifit to track the output from the H7, and MyFitnessPal to count calories and track stats has been an absolute gift.

Since I started tracking my weight on December 30th, I have lost 16lbs. 16.4 to be exact. It's been easy for the most part. There are days that I feel like I'm chipping away at a mountain but then there are days that I come in way under my calorie goal and I don't feel deprived. I haven't changed a whole lot. I track my calories.. if I put in that I will be eating a cup of something and find out it's a billion calories then I cut it in half. I dance - a lot. (Big thanks to my husband for putting up with bumping music in the evening... He probably doesn't like to hear Justin Bieber blaring from the living room... but he puts up with it.) I added an extra strength training day. Nothing that really disrupts the good life that I lead.

I haven't been posting on here since I've felt a little more busy.. or tired.. or sore... but I have been posting a little on another site - Brittany Upgraded. I've decided to upgrade to Brittany 2.0 - this version will faster and leaner. :P

Feeling Better

After a month of effort, I'm feeling better. I'm tired. I'm sore. But it's for all the right reasons. The last few days I've stepped on the scale just to confirm Puerto Rico was a little blip. I'm back on track and will stick to Wednesday and Sunday weigh-ins.

By far the weirdest thing is that I am really looking forward to spring. It's not really an option to go for a walk in the middle of winter. It's painful to be out in the cold air and it usually triggers my asthma... but the worst is the slippery pavement. 99% of the time I am barely stable. Adding ice, snow, slush into the mix means I'm probably about to break something. Spring is a couple months away but for the first time in my life I'm really looking forward to it.

Brittany Upgraded By The Numbers 
Starting Weight: 308.2 
Starting BMI: 48.3
Current Weight: 291.8
Current BMI: 45.7
Goal Weight: 160

Tuesday, February 5, 2013

I Like To Eat

It's a fact. I like to eat. I like good food. It's hard not to judge myself against what other people are doing. I read on MyFitnessPal people who are around my weight and trying to eat only 1200 calories - not even factoring in exercise. I couldn't do that. I don't want to feel like I'm on a diet. Honestly... I don't right now. I'm losing but still eating. My portions are smaller. I think twice about having a lot of bread or rice. Yesterday, I met someone at work that had lost of ton of weight since September. I didn't have a chance to ask how she was doing it... but then I saw her have a shake for breakfast and lunch. I couldn't do that! I'm sure I could lose a ton of weight too if I only had liquids for 2 meals a day. The weight would just come right back though.

Puerto Rico was wonderful. I went to the gym... but I also enjoyed myself. I ate - within some amount of reason - and drank a bit of alcohol... I did gain from the week. I didn't freak out. It's been 4 days and I'm a pound away from the weight I was before I left. I think that's worth it. I didn't use the vacation as an excuse to go crazy... but I didn't count every calorie... and that's okay.

I'm in a good place. It's been a month and I have something to show from my efforts. Here's a sweaty picture of me... I had just gotten down on the dance floor.

Brittany Upgraded By The Numbers 
Starting Weight: 308.2 
Starting BMI: 48.3
Current Weight: 293.2
Current BMI: 45.9
Goal Weight: 160