May 31, 2013

Health | Update: Mini Biggest Loser 120.0lbs and Home Life

Okay, so I didn't win.

Don‘t judge me, I lost the 4.4 lbs I had intentionally gained and placed 8th out of 10. That’s a start.  The winner lost a whopping 18 lbs. After the final weigh-in we headed down to a smokehouse for some fried goodness. I order pulled pork with sweet potato fries. Yum.
I’m sitting here thinking, so what if I didn't win? Did I even try? Nope. One thing that I did take away is the importance of making my own lunch.

Now for me the definition of making my own lunch is simply this: Bring food from home.
But does making your own lunch really save you money? In short, it does if you know what you’re doing. If you’re like me you’ll spend way too much, not eat the food and produce will spoil. It’s been trial and error.

I still live with my family and buying my own groceries has been a little difficult. While on this challenge I tried to purchase items that were easy and tasted good because I was using the minimizing portions method. Unfortunately, my family also thought the items I bought were yummy so I was constantly going back to the store. Like I said before, Mr.B is financially savvy and so I base ‘some’ of my spending habits on what he spends. By the way he eats clean too. He doesn't eat fast food! So sad lol. So, Mr. B spends around $40-$50 weekly, not only on food but cleaning supplies and toiletries. I obviously can't include my toiletries because that budget wouldn't cover my 'Monthly' expenses. Wink Wink... Don't be scared but I use to spend $400-$500 a month on food. Crazy!

During the last two weeks I cracked down on my grocery shopping. I forced myself to buy proper health foods. Turns out that people don’t get cravings for spinach in my house.
Like I have said before, I don’t generally eat large meals at dinner unless I go out with Mr. B. Some weeks I go out 5 times for dinner after having eaten a big lunch. Honestly I’m not usually hungry but seeing him eat or having food infront of me makes me over-eat. In my household we weren't allowed to leave food on the plate. The urge to finish the meal sometimes takes over and I’m left with a tummy ache.

When I have bought groceries it has always been for breakfast and lunch. I have now started to eat lighter all day just in case we go out.

Current weekly grocery list in as follows:
Baby Spinach
Box of Mandarins
Fuji Apples
Activia Yogurt or YOP
Cheerios or Mini-Wheat’s
1 L box of Partially Skimmed Milk (Surprisingly no one touches this, they feel it taste like water)
Because some items last longer they are sporadically included on my grocery list:
Mousto Balsamic Vinegar

Some bad habits that I’m working on…  Every now and gain I buy coffee in the morning even though it’s provided at work. Also, I buy bottled water. I just can’t do it. I can’t drink tap water. I know bottled water is almost exactly the same as tap water (in most cases).I know that bottled water factories have the identical issue that all city water mains have. Build-up of deposits. Now if you've never seen how bad it can get here’s a picture.

Just to clarify minerals are not bad for you in small quantities and the water is treated with Cholrine so it disinfects the water just in case there might be a disease in the water. At least in Canada that’s how we do it.

Even before I went to college and found out that water mains can be quite gross I always hated the taste. The guys at work make fun of me but I swear tap water tastes metallic, dirty and can sometimes stink.

Anyway back to the point of the post, I fluctuate 5 lbs daily depending on hormones and the food I eat. I would like 110lbs to be my average. Currently I don’t feel motivated but I have forced myself to go on walks with Mr. B and swim. My body has changed and I can actually feel abs under my chubbiness.
For the people that say nothing tastes better than being skinny…. You don’t even know.
Maybe one day I will be like you but for now I will finish the pizza I’m eating.

May 21, 2013

Perfect Match | The Ring, The Ring, The Ring!

I’m a little scared.
I could be jinxing myself. There is always risk with putting information like this up on one’s blog. Risk? The possibility that it might not happen and the embarrassment to follow or to simply being misunderstood. I don’t feel there is anything wrong with having a wish list or talking about it with your partner... and anyone who will listen. I have a feeling that some bloggers hide the fact that their ring was planned or that they picked it out themselves.
 I just want to share my thoughts with you and I have the full support of Mr. B.

It has only been in recent years that I've developed an obsessive compulsive nature. Perhaps, I was always like this but it wasn't until I start working full-time that people started noticing. Of course it doesn't really mean much coming from the guys; if you clean off your desk they immediately label you a neat freak. What does that have to do with the Ring? Honestly, I’m a little OCD about the ring. If the Ring is going to be staring at me for the next 50, 60, 70 years I want it to be perfect.

Now I will preface this with saying, I am very hard to impress and my blog is for you to get to know me. I am also the worst at hiding my reaction whether it is good or bad. I remember going shopping for my prom dress, everything looked ugly then my eyes landed on this beautiful gown. It was out of my budget but I guess my mom and grandma saw my face. They insisted on buying it for me. Believe me I felt supremely blessed and I am still very grateful.

It was the same way with Fluffy (Buick Verano... No one bought him for me).

My quest to find Fluffy took months of test driving, research and one bad experience. Everyone told me to get a close-to-death-beat-up car but you know me. I don’t do old, cheap or breaking down. One morning I was close to death (sinus infection) and was searching on AutoTrader for cars in my budget. Bam! There he was. I immediately revived, called my sister and went to test drive him. I knew he was for me.  I have never regretted my decision.

Now back to the ring and my OCD behavior:
Like I said before my intention when dating has always been to get married… and a result of that mentality is that I talk a lot about marriage. Poor Mr. B. It wasn't until recently that Mr. B starting feeling comfortable on the topic. Perhaps he has always been comfortable with it but not so comfortable with the frequency… I am now wondering if my non-stop talking wore him down.

Knowing the I’m an extremely picky I took it upon myself to find my perfect ring. I have no idea if Mr. B is not okay with letting go of the reins nor do I think I will ask. I shall tread on.

The ring.

Some girls dream of very specific ring, lucky for Mr. B, I'm pretty 'open' to different styles. Originally, I thought that the best option for my tastes and attempting to keep cost within a reasonable budget was to buy a loose diamond. I know that in person I love round diamonds but when buying loose I was open to the different styles.
Round Cut, Cushion Cut, Marquee Cut, Pear Cut

I was mainly looking on the James Allen site since they take pictures of every diamond in their collection. After spending considerable time educating myself on how to choose a diamond I gave up. What if I asked for a badly cut diamond and it didn't sparkle?! It would be no one’s fault but mine. After considering the pros and cons my thinking was, FYI this has been without permission... Mr. B could totally tell me to calm down, to go shopping with him. Which he has agreed to, but he has not invited me yet. 

I know that it’s becoming very common for women to go shopping with their future hubbies but I don't really love the idea. I have thought of two solutions:
1. Go shopping with him, with the mentality that we aren't to buy anything (by ‘we’ I mean him… affecting future we lol), and try on a bunch of rings letting him choose which one he likes.
2. Go shopping without him, make a list at the store, tell him where to go and let him choose the one.

Like always I get ahead of myself and sadly I have people that indulge my obsessive nature. A co-worker took me to a jewelry store last week and I choose a couple rings from their selection. At the time Mr. B didn't know… Bad Sam.

I chose 7… 7 different styles but have since then narrowed it down to 3.
Here they are:

Knife Edge Solitaire Engagement Ring

Three Stone Engagement Ring

Three Stone Channel Set Engagement Ring

A couple years ago I had my heart set on a Tacori 2561rd7. Tacori rings are so beautiful but I can’t justify making Mr. B spend $3000-$4000 on the setting alone. I also began thinking that it didn't make sense to have detailing on the sides because it would be cover by the wedding band... Assuming we making it through the engagement... kidding.

 Mr.B has already gone and checked out the rings. Apparently he really didn't like the Knife Edge Solitaire. I was a little upset he told me which one he didn't like. I had hope he would keep it a secret.
I also chose that ring as a 'safe choice'. When in doubt go with something simple.

I really thought the Knife Edge was going to be his favourite. 

A perfect example of what he generally likes is to tell you his favourite ice cream flavour: Vanilla.
Vanilla Bean to be exact. The more I get to know Mr.B the more he surprises me, in an odd but good way.

Although I still want something fabulous, and I’m sure if I asked I could get a freaking amazing ring, at the end of the day it’s not about a palladium-1.0ct and Up Center Stone-Ring, hehehe, it’s about what it represents and what he wants to give me. Mr. B is a very mature and responsible person in his finances I shan't corrupt him.

There are other topics I wanted to discuss with you, about the complexity of dating someone outside of your religion and culture, but that can wait.

Today, I feel happy.

May 13, 2013

Perfect Match | The Peacock

It seems the moment you think you can relax things pick up again. This has felt like a never-ending Monday.

I've been fairly busy the last couple weeks with work and family events. I even went on a mini-shopping trip so that I could do a new product write-up. Where might that post be? Unwritten and still in my head. Where are the products? On my counter! Agh, so frustrating not using them… Actually, I have been using one of the products. I'm sure you won’t mind.

I will be honest… there has been something else on my mind. Lucky for you and everyone around me, I am now coming off my obsessive high.
A ring.
Well in truth it’s not just the ring that I have been obsessing about…
I lost you didn't I?

Let’s start at the beginning….

For me dating has never been casual or without purpose. It has always meant the journey of selecting a permanent partner.  This is the way I was raise and frankly when people hear me talk about marriage (particularly men) they get nervous. I understand that for a lot of people the initial reasons for dating are not to get married and that’s great if that’s what you’re looking for.

My mother was never like Elizabeth Bennett’s (Pride and Prejudice) mom, but I kid you not when I say that at times she reminds me of her. Being raised in this environment I began picturing my perfect hubbie early on. As I got older I modified ‘that’ perfect husband to be an ideal.

I don’t remember what movie this is from but here it goes: If you made a list to describe your perfect man and honestly looked at the list, could you say that you deserve him? The honest answer would be no.

Unless you’re perfect, in that case… I dislike you. Kidding.
The perfect man or ideal man for us might be someone we don't expected.

I would describe myself as:
Confident, ambitious, sporadically generous (I’m usually not very but when I go give it’s too much), encouraging, easily angered, easy to make friends, generally not confrontational…, willing to let others take control but mess it up… I will show you how to run the show; I can be super sensitive, good intentioned, opinionated, and hasty, I like expensive things… and I’m not too keen on DIY projects.
So that’s me in a nutshell.

I was never the type of girl who knew exactly what I wanted for MY Bridezilla! I don’t think I would be and I hope I'm not. I strongly believe the day should be shared big day. It wasn't until I met Mr. B, who told me ‘I knew what I wanted’… therefore unknowingly challenged me to think about it, that I started to form structured thoughts on the matter.

Note: I am not engaged but after 3 (May 17 is 4) romantic… *cough* rational years of commitment and togetherness I thought it would be a good idea to put some thoughts on paper/webpage.

Before we get into my wish list I think it's beneficial to get to know us as a couple.
I will first share my boring love story with you:

A year before I started college I was in a relationship that ended badly. I wouldn't say that Mr. J and I had issues as a couple but both families clashed and it was his that were in the wrong. The arguments directly affect the relationship on many levels. Although many people don’t see the importance of their partner’s family, you are marrying/committing yourself to them through your partner.

I wasn't looking for a relationship and I didn't feel ready. According to my parents I wasn't allowed to date till I was 18... and of course I never attempted to date before that because teenagers always listen to their parents. Now that I had reached the ‘correct’ age with a severely messed up relationship at the back of my mind, my heart wasn't available to start anew.

I met Mr. B in college. I was in first year and he was in third year (last year). I would label Mr. B as a serious intellectual type, aka nerd but he doesn't like that title, and I am/was the fun loving crazy unpredictable (not is relationships but day-to-day decisions) type. Mr. B was a Teachers Aid and assisted the minor years in some subjects. He would hold an open class to discuss topics that were not clearly explained in class. This is where I met him. I will begin by pointing out that the purpose of the class was to ask questions and review material. The first class I attended was where I formed my first impression and dislike for Mr. B. It turned out that this ‘Nerd’ was a smart ass and wasn't very helpful. I asked a question, because I didn't know the answer, and he regurgitated the question back. I still can’t get over it. He firmly stands by the belief that I fell inlove with him at first sight…

Months after our first hiccup which apparently he didn't realize had annoyed me and to this day continues to not address the matter we ended up going to the gym together thanks to a mutual friend. I think by now you know that I hate the gym but I was a little chubby and I wanted to accompany my friend.

One day our mutual friend didn't show up and we decided to go together anyway. We walked around a track for 3 hours and my opinion of him changed. Looking back there was no need for us to walk so long and the next day my body was hurting but we apparently had some chemistry and didn't notice the time.

 As I said before Mr. B is a smart cookie he was given some pretty impressive awards. He was invited to receive one of those awards in Toronto, a couple hours away from home, and asked me to come with him. I understood that to be a date and said no.

Now, my parents were and still are very strict so after I said no I mentioned it my mom and grandma thinking they were going to applaud me. To my surprise they immediately said I should have gone and chastised me. Taking this as a sign I decided the next time, technically the 3rd time, he asked I was going to say yes.

We started dating in May we have no idea what the exact date was so we chose May 17, 2009 and overall my relationship has been smooth sailing… but there are things that have come up that test us daily.

I think I will reserve the ring talk for a little later!