Friday 31 January 2020

Farewell January and the EU!

Today is a sad day, today we leave the EU!

I never wanted to leave, I believe we were better staying in the EU but I guess now, 
I wait to be proved wrong, to see all this extra money and all the benefits that we've been promised, that will make Britain better on it's own!!!!

One thing I believe will now be better, is Sam and Physics! Not EU related at all but after a disastrous mock and equally awful result, I've been on the hunt for a Physics tutor. I'm not completely laying the blame at the school but one teacher in particular is shockingly bad. So rather than bury our heads in the sand and hope it all goes away, I've found someone to help Sam on a weekly basis in the run up to his exams. It's not cheap, in fact I have to work 4hrs + just to pay for it but if I can facilitate the opportunity to rebuild his confidence in the subject, ignite a little self belief, just help get him back on track, the it'll be worth every penny.

So it's farewell to the EU and farewell to the month of January, which has whizzed on by. It's not been a terrible month, a little grey, damp and miserable on more days than I would have liked but we have had the odd cold, crisp, blue sky day to fill us with hope that better weather is on it's way. As always my house is filled with flowers and I'm forever looking for signs of Spring when out and about. Looking back I've done very little this month, other than take Sophie back to Uni and visit my Granny in Cornwall. Once the weather improves and the days become lighter, which they are already becoming noticeably lighter in an evening, then I'm sure my diary will be busier and filled with plenty of things to look forward to.

I always think of January as a month to just get through. I try not to spend too much, eat too much (all the carbs) I just try and keep things steady and will it on it's way x

Monday 27 January 2020

Day Tripper's

So on Saturday, my sister, niece and I went to Cornwall and back... visit Granny!

She's not been great lately and although it's a trek, it brightens her day and lifts her mood, gives her something to look forward to. She doesn't get her 'Meals on Wheels' on the weekend, so I went down with everything required to make a delicious lunch, plus a few leftovers.

We are very lucky to still have Grandparents and the children a Great Grandparent, 
to spend time with. 

Anyway, we had a lovely day, popped in to see Mum and Dad too, before heading on home. I worked all day yesterday, I'm in even earlier now, as I've been tasked with counting and refilling all the tills! My 'turn up, do my time, go home, no responsibilities job' is becoming a little more, it seems!!

Friday 24 January 2020

Cold and frosty, at last!!

Finally! A proper blue sky, crisp, clear, cold and frosty morning.

In fact 3 days in a row......

....that the car had to be scraped before the school run!

We did suffer slightly with fog, the mists rose until the sun burnt through but boy, doesn't it make you feel good to see the sun shine!?!

I'm still looking for signs, signs of hope that better, lighter, brighter days are ahead. The weeks certainly are whizzing by, just one more week of January to navigate our way through.

I've had a busy morning before work, been a busy bee in the kitchen. My sister and I are off to Cornwall tomorrow, to go and see Granny. So I've made apple, pear and blackberry crumbles for pud and her freezer. Her favourite ginger cake, cookies for Jeff and Sam, as I'm not around tomorrow to bake them and when I get back from work, I'll prep lunch to take with us tomorrow.

It's all go!!

Friday 17 January 2020

A long overdue catch up!

Some of you will remember me posting about my weight loss journey over here on the blog but it's been a while, so you'll be forgiven if you have no clue what I'm on about! I post daily on my Instagram account, weigh in updates, meals, recipe ideas, nuggets of info about my hormone condition PCOS (Polycystic Ovarian Syndrome) I started it all in 2014 when I first joined Slimming World and have documented the battle to maintain my weight loss ever since reaching target, the summer of 2015. Over Christmas I got locked out of my account @beckypcosandsprouts Sam said it was a sign to stop posting. I did stop........ for two weeks but realised I needed to be accountable, even if it was to a few squares in my phone!

So yesterday I started up a new account @pcossproutsandme50
A new account for the new decade and the year I turn 50.

My weight loss story started back in June 2011/Jan 2012 when I was featured in Ideal Home magazine. Huge reality check seeing myself in print for all the world to see. There are next to no other photos of me prior to this because sensibly, I was the one always taking them. So seeing myself in print was a huge wake up call that things had to change. Don't get me wrong, I'd tried countless diets before but never really shifted any real weight, just progressively got bigger....... until I joined Slimming World and lost 4st 10lbs, 6st collectively from 'that' picture.

So 5 years on, where am I now? I currently wobble around in a 1.5 stone bubble. Ideally I like to sit at the lower end of 9 stone, realistically it's more 9st 7-10lbs then every year after the summer, between then and Christmas, my weight gradually goes up to the top 10's never 11st, that really is a mental cut off point for me. I then get to New Year, renewed focus, determination to get myself back on track. Start really focused, stall around Easter time, renewed energy and focus as the summer holiday approaches. Get to my preferred weight for my holiday. Enjoy my holiday, try hard to lose the weight I gained whilst on holiday, then it's October half term break, my birthday, then Christmas, the pounds go on and before you know it, its New Year again!!!
So I start 2020 4.5lbs heavier than I did in 2019 but I'm in the right head space, focused and ready to get back into the 9's!

I no longer follow Slimming World, to be honest, I've not followed the plan properly for the past 2/3 yrs, as I tweaked and fine tuned my diet to focus on my PCOS. I still went to group up until September, to be accountable to the scales but wasn't following the plan. Instead I follow the principles laid out in The Obesity Code by Dr Jason Fung and the Fast800 plan by Dr Michael Moseley. I've also introduced fasting and TRE (Time Restricted Eating) in a bid to manage my weight.
Basically a hardcore PCOS diet is gluten, dairy and soya free, low/no carbs, low/no sugar. The fast800/Obesity Code principles are low/no carbs/sugar but protein and good fats. The main contradiction is dairy, as it's advised against on a PCOS diet but encouraged on Fast800/Obesity Code. So I still have dairy - full fat butter, cream, cheese, Greek yogurt but sparingly.
Not only is 'what' you eat important but also 'when' you eat. I try and fast from my evening meal at 6pm until I first eat the following day which can be anything from 16-20 hours. It also is very much focused on not snacking, something I struggle with. I could easily go without a meal and graze my way through the day. So this is an area I'm very aware I need to improve on. 2/3 good meals, NO SNACKING!!!

Regardless, I know I feel better, healthier and happier, when I'm a few pounds lighter. I still get to eat really good, delicious food, just not everything I'd like!
So if you are interested in seeing it all in more detail, go follow my Instagram account @pcossproutsandme50 if not, pop by for the usual blog post here next week x

Saturday 11 January 2020

Signs of spring...

...are there, if you look hard enough!

Not only do I fill my house with spring flowers from New Year until Easter,
 I also continuously look for signs of Spring outside.

We've planted lots of extra bulbs this year, so hoping they'll provide that splash of colour and provide that much needed nudge to sunnier, warmer times ahead.

I've also been filling the house with plants. 
My new IKEA purchase, bought when taking Sophie back to Reading.

Jeff and Sam are now back at work/school and so the school run resumes. Early alarms, still dark, no motivation to go out in the cold but I'm still giving Sam one journey a day, to or from school, to get in some driving practice. One extra bonus has been witnessing the most incredible starling murmurations on our morning runs. 8am on a dull, grey January morning is seemingly when they fly out from the reed beds and give me something to smile about, as I sit passenger in a cold car.

Wednesday was the last night sharing the sofa with this one.....

...... before performing a mini miracle, getting all this stuff packed in to the boot of the Micra!
 It amazes me what one girl needs for 3 weeks!!

Last night's Wolf Moon!

Life will now begin to slot back into a steady routine, now Sophie is back in Reading and we start the 5 week countdown to her coming back for a few days during reading week. Sam has Mocks next week, we're already calling them out to be a good baseline/starting point for some serious focus now in the weeks ahead. I'm just trying to gently drip the idea of passing, rather than re-sitting into his mind. We've already agreed to him taking a gap year next year, regardless of his grades. He's not applied to any Uni's but I want him to enjoy that year, rather than having to re-sit his exams, so now is the time to start applying a little bit of effort. Like actually start doing something, anything, beyond the bare minimum requirement!!!!

I'm also trying to get back into a healthier routine. Trying to get back to making good PCOS friendly food choices too and will try to walk daily, even if it is just once around the block!

I will look for signs of Spring as I walk.....
First snowdrops spotted on my walk today x

Saturday 4 January 2020

Always a colourful welcome..

I've always....

....liked to welcome in the new year with flowers.

Spring bulbs to be precise.

A nod to Springs arrival, adding a little hope and promise.....

...of warmer, lighter, brighter, sunshiny days ahead

My sister brought me over these beautiful tulips on Thursday...

...and they been filling the table with colour ever since.

I also spotted my first daffs coming through the checkouts in Sainsbury's,
so treated myself to a couple of bunches.

You can never have too many!

Wednesday 1 January 2020

Pinch and a punch......

Pinch and a punch.....

..... hello January.....

.....hello 2020.....

.....hello new decade!!!

My word for the next decade is ADVENTURE!

And I've a few adventures already planned for 2020! Florence with my sister, Majorca en famille, Prague with Sam for his 18th, Barcelona with Jeff for my 50th and somewhere to celebrate Sophie's 21st, which is still to be decided due to her placement year commitments. 
Although no surprise to some, we're already planning an adventure for December 2021!!

Obviously with a new decade, we take stock of the last 10 years. Our pics for the #10yearchallenge Harder than it looked, as all photos from 2009 are on a memory stick 'somewhere'. There are little or no pics on my computer, facebook or blog! Will be easier to complete the next challenge in 10 years time, as we now take 1000's of pics!

So all that is left to do, is to wish you all a very happy and healthy 2020.
Here's to making many memories and good times in the new decade x