Thursday, January 4, 2018

New habits for the New Year!

I love the week between Christmas and New Year's Day. It is a time to review the past year and take note of what I accomplished as well as things I didn't finish (or even start!). It is also a time of introspection as I look forward to the next 365 days and decide what my goals are and how I want to spend my days. I have high hopes for myself in 2018. I am going to have to set aside some of my crochet time in order to meet some other goals.

My youngest son will graduate from college in December 2018 and he has asked me to finish his scrapbooks. I have 10 years of pictures to work through, so my plan is to tackle a year's worth each month and hand him his scrapbooks at Christmas. I'm not sure if I can meet this goal as I have to figure out which pictures to print, but I'm going to do my best!

Another goal that I began working on January 2nd is changing my diet over to a ketogenic eating plan. There is lots of info about this way of eating online and the results for people with medical issues that I have (hypothyroidism, insulin resistance, high cholesterol) are amazing. So many people healing themselves by eating very low carb. To start the year off right, my husband and I had a Cardiac Calcium CT done at a nearby imaging center. I was surprised to learn that my score was a perfect ZERO! This indicates that there is currently no calcifications in my arteries. Based on my genetic history, it is a miracle - LOL! I've had my bloodwork done and most of it is good. My cholesterol is high, but that is due in part to eating lower carb the last quarter of the year which raised my good cholesterol result.

Eating keto takes a lot of planning and a bit of extra cooking. Thankfully, I am home for now and have the time to tackle this. I cook for 5 adults and every person has food they don't like, so it can be a bit of a challenge to come up with a weekly menu that satisfies everyone! I do my best and everyone is appreciative of my efforts and that is a good thing! The biggest task taking my time is counting my macros for each meal (calories, fat, etc.), but that will ease up with time as I get everything written down and can refer back more easily. I think that is why a lot of people give up on eating healthier - it takes a lot of time to track everything.

I still haven't returned to the gym. I will be 3 months post-op in another week or so and intend to begin walking next week. I hope to begin lifting weights again in February. I am pretty much back to normal. I gave up wearing compression garments about 3 weeks ago and no longer experience swelling in my belly. I can tell that it is still healing because I will feel a twinge or pull here and there based on my movement, but I am so happy with the results!

Here is the little stash of books that I will be reading, studying, and enjoying for 2018.

I can't wait to dive into them and let them help me make 2018 the best year yet! I've already started decluttering the house as I am following the minimalist movement to clear out 2,018 things in 2018. So far, we have removed 250 items from our house! I will use the Spark Joy and Tidying Up books to help me declutter the entire house by spring. Then we will have one huge yard sale and take anything not sold to Goodwill. I'm studying the Scandinavian books (How to HyggeHygge, Lykke and Lagom) in order to take a different approach to how I view life and am enjoying what I have read so far. The Year of Cozy and Scandinavian Gatherings books will help me enjoy each month a little more as I make some new recipes and try some new crafts. Making Winter is an exquisite book and I can't wait to dive right in. I will be reviewing these books over the coming weeks, so stay tuned for more details!

I also want to return to the simple and frugal ways that I used to have. You know the old adage, "You spend what you make." Well, that isn't totally true as we do very well with regards to retirement planning, but it is true that we do spend more now than we used to. 2018 is the year of savings - no extra spending, eat out less, make my own cleaners, etc.

I just received these books yesterday and will probably spend the rest of the week looking through them and choosing several tasks to work on. I will be reviewing both books soon. Little House Living is full of 130 simple, DIY recipes for making beauty products, cleaners, edible goodies. The Hands-On Home is a seasonal guide with information regarding lots of DIY for preserving foods, making home and personal care products, as well as recipes to enjoy each season. It's gonna be a fun year learning so many new things!

Unfortunately, we have to start off the new year with a bit of surgery for one of my four dogs. Gizmo, aka Gizzy, has developed glaucoma in his left eye. You can see the ulcer as it was a few years ago (he came to us this way when we adopted him) and if you look closer at the bottom picture, you can see that the ulcer now covers all of his eye. This is due to the glaucoma and he has now lost all vision in that eye. So, next week the eye will be removed in the hopes of eliminating any pain he is experiencing at this time. I hope he will recover quickly and feel better soon!

Well, I guess that is all for the first post of the year. I have plans to blog at least once weekly in 2018, so I hope you will follow along this year and maybe even be inspired to join me in my adventures towards a simpler, more enjoyable and frugal way of living. Until next time .....

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