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Wednesday, September 30, 2015

It's My Christmas Week!

This is it, I know some of you have been waiting for me to start, and I have been patiently waiting to start talking about Matt Minglewood. But I won't wait any more!

The next three nights are the best nights that I have in Fort McMurray. The nights that Matt comes to town and plays at the Boomtown Casino are my Christmas. I count down from the time that I hear that he is booked, and I start reminding people about 100 days out. And here we are, this time tomorrow night, I will be sitting at a table, waiting for Matt and band to take the stage.

So here's the plan. Tomorrow night is girl's night! Whoever wants to join us for supper, a few of us are heading to the new Town Hall on Fraser Avenue for around 6:45p.m. And then we are off to grab tables at the Casino to hear Matt.

If you don't like me, and you don't like Matt, then the next few days are not a good time to be following me on Facebook, here or Twitter. This is my time to have fun, dance, sing, and catch up with all my old and new friends. Every single year I get to meet some new people in town, or ones that are in from camp. And I get to sit and see friends that I went to school with, friends that I haven't seen in years, and best of all? I get to listen to a Canadian legend on the stage. How does it get any better? For me, the only things that could make it better would be more friends. I wish that some of my oldest, dearest friends and some family could be with me this weekend. I wish that my old friends that love Matt almost as much as I do could be here to share the nights with me.

And one extra bonus for me this weekend is that my oldest, Mitchell, is going to be going with us on one of the nights. Several other young people who come here all the time are also going, and that is so special to me. This marks the official weekend that a fourth generation in our family will go and listen and sing along to Matt's great songs! So if anyone has a younger, sensible daughter, bring her along to meet my son, lol! Good thing he doesn't read his old mom's writings!

We always have so much fun, and it's always way better than I even imagine. So if you have a friend or relative out here in Fort McMurray, tell them to head to the Boomtown Casino this weekend, and if I haven't met them before, tell them to go introduce themselves to me. I will be the redhead up front, dancing and laughing and having the time of her life. It all starts in less than 24 hours now!!

Monday, September 21, 2015

I need motivation!

I am still trying to figure out how to get my motivation going. I am down 5.4 pounds since I started about three weeks ago. Not a lot, but slow and steady, and better than any gains!

But I still haven't been adding in any exercise. And in talking to other women, I realize that I am not alone. The days that I get the house work, and a little writing, then there is no time for exercise. If I do some interviews and a meeting for work, I get nothing done at the house, so then I feel like I should clean up the next day instead of once again fitting the exercise in. See, no balance. My goal in the next few weeks is to start planning my days out better, and getting the exercise done.

So far the easiest part has been the healthier eating, as everyone is on board in the house. I will start posting more of the recipes that have been a hit so far. The first one is supper easy, and everyone loves lettuce boats.

I use romaine lettuce hearts. For the stuffing, I cut up boneless chicken breasts and fry them in some olive oil. I add about a tablespoon of red pepper flakes, and about a half a bottle of hoisin sauce(for about four chicken breasts). Then I add whatever the kids will eat, like red pepper, corn, chopped water chestnuts. and matchstick carrots.

I hope you all are working towards your own goals, and know that there are many of us going through the weight loss struggle.

Monday, September 7, 2015

I hope this is the beginning of a new trend!

I did it! I kicked off my first week of weight loss with a great start. I lost 3.2 pounds in a week, yeah me! But I didn't incorporate any exercise in the last week, so that is one thing that I plan to change this week.

I did try to add some extra steps to my fitbit, but it was really just better meals in the last week that made the difference. I had smaller portions, more veggies, and I also made things like stuffed peppers, and skipped fast food and desserts.

Now this week I am going to get back to Oranj for some classes and keep up with the healthier eating.

Of course life threw me another curveball this week, as Tim has been assigned to a new project at work, so he isn't going to be home after Christmas. For the next few months I am more or less going to be a single parent again. Tim will be gone before Shayleen and the boys get up, and Shayleen will be in bed before he gets home. And with the long hours, he will be in bed before the boys are.

The other wrench with this new plan is that I will have to make two suppers again each night. Hopefully I will restrain from eating with the kids and then with Tim.

For now, I'm happy with my loss this week, and I feel like I am still on track for this week. Thanks to the ones who have joined me, keep checking in and we will do this together. I wish I could figure out how to link my fitbit or my fitness pal onto the blog. I will do some research this week to see if I can do something like that so that I can be more accountable with my exercise on here. I will let you all know what I find out. And I will start posting some of the healthy recipes I am using.

Wednesday, September 2, 2015

Wine Wednesday!

Okay, before you start emailing me, I realize that it is diabolical that the first blog I do after saying that I am going to lose weight is one about wine. But lighten up.

For months now I have been watching Matt Bellassai do his Wine Wednesday posts, and every week I get tempted to do my own version, Fort McMurray/Cape Breton style. And then every week, I chicken out. I can't think of anything I hate worse than getting my picture taken, except maybe making a video of myself. The other night a loved one "Face timed" me on my phone. It's a good thing I love him, because otherwise, I wouldn't have answered. All I could see was my huge red nose up in the corner distracting me the whole time. And yes, I'm working on finding a fix to that stupid thing.

So instead I thought I would offer some of my favourite wines every week, because, you know, everyone loves wine. And everyone loves trying new wines and talking about a great find.

It's funny, I don't think people believe me, but I didn't really start drinking wine until a few years ago. I would have the occasional glass at a wedding in Cape Breton, but I didn't really start enjoying the different wines until I moved out to Fort McMurray. And yes, I realize the irony. And it has turned into a huge signature for me, I love wine jokes, I love nice wine accessories, and I love a good wine, especially with good friends. So on Wednesdays I will share some finds.

To kick off the series, I am going to offer some Canadian, Australian and another from the States. Which is kind of funny, because anyone who knows me would say that my favourites lean more to the Shiraz and Cabernet picks.  I have two from Canada, one from the States,  and one from Australia Regretfully, they are all a bit more pricey, but the Canadian ones are not too bad.

If anyone ever asks me what my absolute favourite wine of all time is, I will quickly answer, it comes from the Larkmead Winery in California. And my favourite so far is the Cabernet Sauvignon. Hands down, best wine ever, ever. Friends and relatives have gone in on a case with me a few times now, because it is becoming harder and harder to find at a liquor store up here. And while we all say that we only drink it for special occasions like birthdays and anniversaries, we have been together and looked at each other and said, "Why not?" and cracked a bottle. It's a bit more pricey, since it usually comes in at around $55-$60 a bottle. But it's cheaper to order a case with friends.
And when I can't find a Larkmeand, my next best find is a little cheaper, since it usually costs around $47 a bottle, but it is Kilikanoon. It is an Australian Shiraz, so I guess it would be my favourite Shiraz, but it's not one that I would buy on a regular basis. Instead it's another one of those "treat" wines that I get for special get togethers.

My two favourite Canadian wines came to me through friends. My first pick was given to me as a gift from my bestie, Brooke. It was so good that after she gave it to me, and then I went to Toronto, we drove down to the Jackson Triggs Winery in Niagara just to buy some more. It is the Sparkling Merlot by Jackson Triggs. And again, sadly, it's a hard one to find. I just went to see if I could order it, and it's sold out. And I have never seen it in any liquor store out here, we and Brooke and Kevin have only found it at the actually winery. But if you ever get the chance, it's one of the best wines you will ever try.

And finally, my last pick for favourites has a local connection. Bob Campbell is a lawyer from Fort McMurray who invested in  Dirty Laundry a few years back. Get your heads out of the gutter, lawyers are not always associated with everyone's dirty laundry. This time around, Campbell did us all a favour, the buzz around town was that several local people had invested in this company, so of course, everyone was curious to try it to see if it was any good. In the last year this wine has become one of my favourites. It's one that I would give to a good friend as a Birthday gift, and it's one that I would buy myself at the end of a particularly hard week. It is usually $38 in the local stores, and my particular favourite is the Kay -Syrah, but I want to try the Dangerous Liasons, which always seems to sell out before it even hits the stores. Wineries alway have wonderful stories behind how they came up with their names, and Dirty Laundry is no exception. Go to to read about their history, their wines, and the fun things they do at their winery.

As you can tell, I definitely favour my red wines, but I will also share my favourite white wines in the weeks to come. I hope that you will all share your picks with me, and cheers!