Friday, December 27, 2013

Whole30 Results, The Day After, and Two Months Later

I'm finally getting around to posting my Whole30 Results. Yes, it was two months ago, but I figure better late than never. I may eventually post our Halloween costumes from this year too, who knows. :)

So, Whole30 results. The last day was a little rough. I didn't have much food in the house, nothing prepared. I could taste victory and it was really hard not to run out and get a pizza. I ended up just not eating much that day. 

I was extremely happy with my weigh in that morning, however. Overall, from start to finish I lost a grand total of.... 15 lbs! I was so excited and I felt amazing.

Now, the Whole30 program has a 4 day plan to reintroduce foods slowly into your diet, mostly so you can see how these foods affect you. I definitely did not do this. I probably should have, but I didn't. 

The first day after I completed Whole30 was Halloween. I did a lot of last minute sewing all day, we had Costco pizza for lunch, and Halloween candy for dinner. I drank soda, ate tons of sugar, and a huge amount of carbs. None of it tasted that great, not even the Costco pizza which is my favorite, but I ate it anyway. 

That was Day 1 off Whole30. Day 2 was what I can only describe as a FOOD HANGOVER. It was terrible. And horrible. It was horrible and terrible. I felt disgusting, sluggish, bloated, and achy. I had a headache the likes of which I'd never had. My whole body rebelled. 

If you're planning on doing a Whole30, or are currently doing one, my advice to you is: Be smart, continue to eat well and follow the reintroduction plan after the 30 days are up, or you'll regret it!

Am I glad I did Whole30?

Yes! I learned so much about food and how it affects me everyday. I know what it feels like to be satiated and full. When I start to feel crappy or have a headache, my immediate thought is "What did I eat today or yesterday? How much water have I had in the last 24 hours?" and then begin to counteract with healthier foods and water. 

Follow Up Two Months Later

It's been almost a full two months since I finished my first Whole30. I've gained back about half of what I lost. Am I disappointed with that? Nope! If I'm going to gain weight over the holidays then I'd rather have lost weight first to begin with. Imagine if I hadn't done Whole30 in October, then instead of being 7 and a half pounds below what I was October 1st, I could be 7 and a half pounds heavier! Yikes! I'm thinking October is a fantastic time to do a Whole30 and I'll do it again next year too. 

Speaking of which, I think it's time to do it again! What better way to bring in the New Year? I want to set the tone for the rest of the year. 2014 is going to be busy and stressful for my family and I, so I'd like to get a head start on creating healthy habits, so when the hard days hit later in the year, I'll be ready.

I'd love if some of my readers would join me in doing Whole30 in January. I'll have a post up soon inviting everyone to participate! 

If you have any questions please leave them below! You can find the rest of my Whole30 experience here, or by clicking the tab at the top of the page labeled Whole30. 

Monday, December 23, 2013

Ornament Exchange Spotlight - Crocheted Snowflakes!

I had a great time hosting my first Facebook Ornament Exchange this year. It was so much fun to see my crafty and non-crafty friends alike bust out some sweet ornaments! I can't wait to do it again next year, I definitely see this becoming an annual tradition ;) 

Looking for an idea for a handmade ornament? If you know your way around a crochet hook this may be perfect for you! 

These beauties were made by my mom. There are tons of free snowflake patterns on the internet, just do a Google search. Or start here at for 11 free patterns!
Tip from my mom: When you spray the stiffener on to the snowflake, sprinkle some iridescent glitter over them to make them sparkle. Makes a huge difference in the finished product! 

I'll be posting more ornaments from this years exchange, so stay tuned!

Follow my Ornament Exchange board on Pinterest for more ideas!

Thursday, December 19, 2013

Holiday Fun - Facebook Ornament Exchange!

This year, to get in the holiday spirit, I decided to host an Ornament Exchange on Facebook! The idea was everyone would be assigned one person to make an ornament for, Secret Santa style, so you didn't know who was making you your ornament until you received it. I started a Facebook Event back in November, making it easy to contact everyone involved all at once. As ornaments were received, my friends posted pictures of them and said thanks. 

Top two reasons to host an Ornament Exchange on Facebook? 

1. Get involved with friends and family far away that you may not normally interact with (other than liking their photos and posts). 

2. See you non-crafty friends realize just how crafty they can be! I didn't see any ugly ornaments, no matter how many of my friends complained they didn't have a crafty bone in their body :) 

Tips for hosting a Facebook Ornament Exchange! 

1. Advertise early, let your friends know before Thanksgiving that you're hosting an exchange. Invite everyone, even people you haven't talked to in a while, or are not sure would like to be involved. 

2. Start a Facebook Event. This is an easy way to contact everyone all at once, give updates, send out reminders, and share photos and thanks with later on!

3. Use to set up your Exchange. Post a link to the Exchange on your Facebook event so people can join up. Elfster will match up people, and email them to let them know who they'll be making an ornament for. The website will share shipping info, as well as send email updates to remind folks when the deadline is approaching! As the host you'll be able to manage the exchange and will be able to see who has drawn what name. 

4. Make the deadline earlier than necessary. I made my Exchange deadline December 10th, this was the date ornaments were to be mailed on. Did I really expect everyone to have their ornaments in the mail by that day? No. I had friends with finals, friends who are procrastinators, friends who experienced a death in their family, all kinds of reasons why their ornaments didn't get mailed on time. Making an early deadline encourages everyone to have their ornaments made, but plenty of time to mail them. 

5. Update often. Check in on your event and see how people are doing and ask how their ornaments are coming along. The whole point of the Exchange is to bring people together, so make sure you're interacting with them! 

6. Make a Pinterest board and invite your friends to pin to it. Sharing a board on Pinterest is a great way to share ideas with each other. In November, Pinterest is littered with handmade ornament ideas. Everything from super duper Martha Stewart ornaments to preschool style  (like those adorable clothes pin reindeer). This is especially important for your non crafty friends. Most of these pins feature step by step instructions and who doesn't need that every now and then? 

I'll be posting pictures of ornaments my friends made this week, so check back for some easy handmade ornaments made by real people!