Thursday, May 26, 2016

The Struggle

It's a constant struggle not to put back on all the weight I lost last year.  I would like to be making progress, but I find myself spending my energy just trying to maintain.  In the last few months I have been using the house buying as an excuse to eat whatever I want.  I don't know if I thought I was going to get away with it or what, but the scale clearly says I have gained.  It's not a huge amount, but it's summer and not at all what I want or need.

What to do?  There really is only one option, and that's to start putting all my food in My Fitness Pal app, hit that 10,000 step goal most days and add the weights back at least twice a week.  It's boring, but it's realistic.

I really love eating on my new patio, but sometimes I still just want to get out and see people and not cook or cleanup.  The nice thing is I'm cooking at home more, and the best part is I'm enjoying it more.

Two Weeks later...

I just couldn't gather any enthusiasm last time I was trying to write.  This week I finally got a chance to pause and get my life together.  I had several days all to myself to unpack and organize and actually think about the house and some upcoming social functions.  I even got my hair done and did my nails.  I am feeling so much better!

The only thing that isn't clicking along as well as I'd like is losing the couple pounds I put on during the move.  I have gotten so many steps this week, but I was also hungry.  Ugh!!  Sometimes I just don't know what to do.  I did turn down an invitation to happy hour this week.  I felt guilty about saying no to my friend, but I really wanted to keep working on the projects I was doing and have time to myself.  I also did not want to drink, I felt like it would disrupt my whole vibe that I had going and I was really enjoying myself.  In the end I feel like it was the right decision for me.  I am really starting to settle in and I love it here.

Monday, April 11, 2016

House Hunting In Portland: The Final Countdown

It looks like after 4 and a half months of waiting we may actually be a week away from getting the keys to our new condo.  We first saw it Thanksgiving weekend and have had our fingers crossed ever since.  I have to admit that in the last month or so the waiting has become challenging.  We both seem to be feeling very restless which has not translated into saving money or losing weight.

I know this is the same problem I always seem to have, but now it' supposed to be temporary.  After we move we keep talking about how we'll cook at home and hang out on the deck etc.  What it we're just as restless as always?  What if we get bored cooking in and hanging out right away?  I admit I'm starting to feel nervous.  This is a big life change so I guess it's actually normal to be having all kinds of feelings and emotions.  Frankly I'm tired of it and also just plain tired.  I can't wait to stop thinking about everything and start doing things!

On HGTV people always say cliche things about buying a home like "start living our lives" or "put down roots" I always roll my eyes, but the fact is living in limbo is annoying.  This whole year has been about getting a place and we are so close.  This will all be so worth it if I can just make it to the finish line.

Thursday, April 7, 2016

Stress Eating Stresses Me Out

Basically I have tried everything to save money and lose weight the last two months, except diet and exercise and staying in.  I can't roll my eyes enough at myself!  I have a list of reasons that are really just excuses for why I "should" treat myself.  Bottom line is I have put on two pounds.

Most people are probably thinking that isn't much, and in the grand scheme it isn't.  However, my goal was to lose two pounds on the way to my larger goal of losing 7+ pounds.  Plus my face is all broken out and I feel crappy.  Now to add to the whole mess I have stress at work.  Ugh!

I can't quite figure out why this house buying thing is so stressful.  Yes there is a lot of money involved, but we signed on for that in the beginning.  If I had to name one thing it would have to be the uncertainty of whether or not it will happen at all or get called off completely. At some point we had to go all in and give notice at our apartment all without any guarantee that we will have somewhere to live after all of this.  When you rent an apartment they are able to tell you exactly when you will move in a month ahead of time and you're able to plan accordingly.  This is not like that at all, and it makes me question everything I do.

I feel restless and anxious and all I want to do is either move into my new place or run away. Everything and everyone is on my nerves and I would just like to have some quiet time.  Not going to happen, so instead I'm going to pull myself together and carry on.

Friday, March 18, 2016

Turn Around

Friday is usually my favorite day of the week, but today I'm just not feeling it.  We're supposed to be saving money, but we've already been out twice this week.  Now it's the weekend and it's sunny but we really shouldn't go out.  Also, things just aren't going as well as I'd hoped for my four days off. We're both stressed out about this house stuff and this apartment is really starting to get on my nerves.  I know this is just a bunch of complaining, but I was hoping I would feel better if I got it all out and got some perspective.

I really need to remember that this is not the last Friday that will be sunny.  I have had plenty of fun already this week and there is no reason I can't enjoy a little down time.  I would like to save money and lose some weight and going out will not help me accomplish either of those things.  It's not even that warm out and it's supposed to be windy.  We had a little tiff this morning and I think that's probably what's really bothering me.  We made up, but it's just not the same for a while after a disagreement.  Now it's the weekend that I was looking forward to and I don't seem to be enjoying myself which makes me feel sad and guilty and then it's just a big circle of crap.

So, what to do now?  Be excited for what's coming next in life.  I can think of it that way or pout about it.  The grown up thing to do is accept that you have to make some sacrifices to get what you want.  Also, it's time to let things go and move on.  Not everyone holds a grudge and I bet they have less wrinkles and sleep better at night.  I am going to give that a try and I bet you this weekend turns around in a hurry.

Thursday, March 10, 2016

March On

Things are still going pretty well with Miserly March.  I haven't kept up with tracking my spending, but I know I'm spending less.  My diet, however, is on life support.  My husband has been sick for almost two weeks and he cheers himself up with pizza.  This has put us back to our old habits and the future is clear, if we don't stop it right now we will gain all the weight back.  Another perfect excuse to go out and be bad is moving.  We just found out after three and a half months of waiting that we will be moving in 35 days.

One problem we've had this year is that our apartment is less inviting than almost any other place we've lived.  I know we've had places we liked less, but this apartment is tiny and faces a wall.  I find myself using that as an excuse to go out to dinner.  We keep telling ourselves that our new place will be so great that we'll want to spend more time at home cooking and hanging out.  I'm worried that we'll still want to go out, but we won't be able to.  When we talked about budget last night I felt a little concerned that we're headed for a lifestyle change.  I just have to keep focusing on what I'm getting, not what I'm giving up.

I haven't been having trouble not buying other things, it's just going out that's a problem.  This is the same issue I've had for years, and things will have to change.  We are going to need to be on a very strict budget for at least the next six months.  This is the cost of buying a house that's perfect for the foreseeable future instead of one that we know we'll only like for a couple years. While it's a smart move for the future it's going to be a tough adjustment for the present.  I really do think it's going to be worth it.

Thursday, March 3, 2016

Miserly March

It's time to buckle down.  We heard back from the bank and it's going to require quite a bit more cash at closing than we were expecting, so we really have no choice.  I was online looking for pictures to post around the house to inspire me to save money and I found several references to 30 day No Spending challenges.

Everyone knows there's nothing I love more than a gimmicky challenge with rules and rewards.  Add to that it's the beginning of the month, which is a siren song to me for starting something new,  and we have a full blown game on.  I have posted No Spending pictures around the house with one of the vacation we have planned for this summer and the sofa we need for additional motivation.  I read one post where they tracked what they spent on what and where each day so I posted a calendar on the front door.

I found several additional philosophies associated with the no spend concept.  Some people feel that you not only stop bringing things into the house, but take the time to purge things you don't need as well so that at the end of the month you have spent less and have less stuff as well.  Another comment that I loved was the idea that you use up all your pantry reserves even if that means eating the multiple cans of beans you got on sale.  The idea being that you use what you have and get an opportunity to think about maybe not gathering up 20 cans of beans in the future.

Everything seems to point to one common theme and that is mindful consumption.  One blogger even tracked what she wanted to spend money on but didn't.  I found it very interesting because it was the same kind of stuff I would like to buy.  She also kept it realistic by including a dinner out once per week in her allowed spending, it's supposed to be sustainable for a month after all.

The Rules For My No Spend March

  1. Groceries and Pharmacy are allowed but not additional buying and use pantry
  2. One dinner and one lunch out per week 
  3. No spending on stuff or entertainment
  4. Track spending
It took me a few days to finish this post, so in the mean time I have been putting all the no spending challenge tips to use.  I have already noticed that I shave a few dollars off of every outing because I'm conscious of my goals.  The other thing that sticks out immediately is that we both spend money on lunch at work.  To be realistic we both agreed to try to spend less rather than stop having lunch out on work days.  It makes the day nicer, and we aren't here to torture ourselves.  I'm encouraged to keep going.

Friday, February 26, 2016

Party Train Stops Here

Waiting for this short sale to come through combined with late February sunshine has made me act like I'm on vacation all week.  I went out Sunday, Tuesday and Thursday and I already have plans to go out Saturday plus my in laws want to BBQ on Sunday.  I have to get off the party train!!!
Not only am I sabotaging my diet just when I should be working extra hard, but same goes for spending money when I should be pinching every penny! I am so frustrated with myself and yet I'm really happy and having fun.  It's a slippery slope when you want to have a life and spend time with friends, but your specific goals are to lose weight and save money.  That practically screams stay home and isolate, but that's not very realistic.  I also currently live in a tiny apartment that looks out onto a wall so it's not very inviting for spending time and talking.  I may have to skip the last minute BBQ and then buckle down next week and focus.  We'll see, either way I'm going to make the best of it.