Final 2019 Resolutions Check-In

2019 Resolutions

With 2019 coming to a rapid close, it’s time for one last review of how my resolutions went throughout the year. Overall, I think I did fairly well and I am happy at how this blog held me accountable and helped me stick to my goals. It has also helped me shape new goals for 2020, which I will post in another couple days or so. And so, for 2019, here’s how things went…

Resolution #1: Keep Blogging. I kicked butt at this one. I posted more things, and tried more new things, than I think I ever have. Or maybe it just felt that way because I was documenting most of it haha. I continued to blog so much so that I actually still enjoy it… whaaaa. This makes me very excited for 2020 as I have some cool ideas in the works that I will be posting here, such as new tutorials, new recipes and a few other random thoughts that I will be putting into new sections here on Thistle + Rose Studios.

Resolution #2: Two Week Detox. Obviously, this was over a long, long time ago (the first two weeks of 2019), but has inspired me to complete a total month of sobriety (and no smoking) to begin 2020. I will be doing a Dry January and from that incorporating some fun projects and classes to keep myself occupied and motivated. Stay tuned for more posts on this, and let me know if you want to join in on the challenge!

Resolution #3: 2019 The Year of No New Things. I’ll admit, I was better at this one for the first six months of 2019 rather than the last half. But hey, I think I’ve still done pretty good. I think I can actually remember each new thing I’ve bought which means, to me anyway, that I haven’t bought that much. I also still pretty much feel like everything I bought was necessary to buy new, but maybe you can tell me if you agree. I bought a vacuum cleaner, a new hat from Nashville (which was actually a reward for making it 6 months without buying anything new), 2 pairs of shoes (one for casual and work needs the other for the gym – it can be really tough to find good shoes at the thrift store for specific purposes), a dining room table (which is probably my second favorite purchase next to my hat), and a couple of souvenirs while in Hawaii (I’ve never actually looked for thrift in Hawaii… might have to do that next time). Overall, I’d say I did pretty well. For 2020, I’d like to keep this idea alive, while also spending LESS time and money thrifting and allowing myself to buy things I need in the higher price ranges to get them at a higher level of quality. For example, new jeans are tough for me to find at the thrift store and I may need new jeans this year, so I might allow myself to spend $100+ on a nice new pair. All in all, I think this resolution is a good one to follow all year and every year. It’s further shown me the value of purchasing secondhand as well as showing me that I don’t need as much as I think I do.

Resolution #4: Sustainability Through Food. This resolution was another that was better at the first 6 months than the last. This is partly due to weather. I had a spring/summer garden but failed to put together a winter garden. Also, my spring summer garden did okay, but not great, I think mostly due to weird weather and late rains here in California. Overall though, I am proud of myself and I learned alot. I am looking forward to using this knowledge to start some seeds here within the next couple months. I am also proud of the progress I made with making food at home. Up until the holidays I was kicking butt at doing meal prep, making dinners at home and eating all of our leftovers. It saved us a ton of money but it also cut down on a TON of our food waste. I am also proud to say that I have learned many, many new things about preparing vegan food, and have posted many of my newfound recipes here. I was even able to create an entire vegan Thanksgiving meal from scratch. I hope to do an entire post on this in Fall 2020. I did not do as well as I had hoped at not having our groceries delivered, but I think I am ready to succumb to the convenience. Having a full-time job plus numerous side hustles and trying to cook all food at home while going to the gym and maintaining a social life is busy. So I think it’s okay that I have groceries delivered more often than not. It gives me time to worry about more important things and it’s only $5 which to me is worth the time I’m saving by not having to make a trip to the grocery store.

Resolution #5: Take Better Care of Your Body. This resolution overall has been challenging at times, but overall so good! I think the most difficult part is finding a balance between living a more healthy lifestyle versus trying to implement a completely new habit like going to the gym every day. I’ve learned that it’s okay to substitute a trip to the gym with a long walk outside, or to do a class at home on Youtube. As long as I am doing something active every day it doesn’t have to be the gym. I think this will come in especially handy in the first few months of January since the gym will most likely be jam-packed with new people trying to kickstart their resolutions. I am looking forward to finding more ways to be active outside versus inside and to involve my dogs more too since they love to be active with me. I’ve also started taking and selling supplements through Arbonne which have been making me feel great. The probiotics and dietary supplements have shown me the most results and have me feeling better than I have in a long time. I also enjoy using their protein shakes as a breakfast (and have been using them since November now) and find it a great alternative to not eating breakfast like I was doing before. I find myself with more energy throughout the day and I tend to sleep better too. If you’re interested in finding out more about these products, let me know or you can browse on shop on your own using this link here.

Overall, 2019 has been a great year of lessons and finding what’s important to me. With only one day of the year left, I am excited to build new goals and formulate new resolutions to further enrich and improve my life. I also look forward to continuing to maintain this blog and share my experiences. 2020 is only a day away, and the best is yet to come.

Half Way Through 2019 – Resolutions Check-In

2019 Resolutions, Ramble On

We are half way through 2019 already – can you believe it? It seems like the years go by faster and faster every year and this one is no exception. It’s been fun though having real attainable goals and trying to achieve them, and stick to them, throughout the last 6 months. I wanted to do a post today to tell you all about how my resolutions are going, what I’ve been able to do to stay on target and what my plans are for the remaining half of the year. Let’s get into it! If you want more details and specifics about my resolutions go check out my other posts here.

Resolution #1 – Keep Blogging – so far so good! I’ve had a couple lapses where I didn’t post for a while, but overall I think I’ve stayed fairly dedicated. I’ve had to switch my focus from time to time in order to keep myself excited and into blogging, but I think that’s also kept the site more interesting. I mean, does anyone really want to just read about the same thing all the time? I know I don’t want to write like that. I plan on continuing to use this blog as sort of a personal journal to include my resolution accountability, culinary experiments, pop-up camping adventures and overall life lessons. Stay tuned for travel posts about Nashville, some awesome vegan recipes I tried out this weekend for my Mom’s 60th birthday and many more pop-up camping posts!

Resolution #2 – Two Week Detox, January 2019 – okay, so this one has been completed, but I’ve been having some thoughts on it. I think I want to do another detox here fairly soon and this time for 3 weeks. I’m just trying to figure out the optimal date to do it which during the summer and wedding season can be tough, because hello, champagne toasts, camping trips, bbqs and every other excuse for a cold one. However, I really enjoyed the way my body felt after the detox and think it may be time for another. This is something I think I’d like to do more regularly just in general, this way it will get easier every time and hopefully have lasting effects on how often I drink and smoke regularly. So more on that to come…

Resolution #3 – 2019, The Year of No New Things – I have been killing it at this one! I have mentioned this in previous posts but now that we are at the 6 month mark I think it’s an incredibly important check-in. I have been able to go 6 whole months without really buying anything new. Okay so, some exception – first, I bought a vacuum cleaner. Our vacuum died and with having 5 animals in the house it’s not really something I can live without, nor is it something I want to buy used. Our vacuum has to be beastly when it comes to animal hair and I just don’t think a thrifted vacuum would cut it, so I bought it new. Second, I rewarded myself a little early. I had decided in January when I made this resolution that I would allow myself two slips – one at 6 months and one at the end of the year. Well, I went to Nashville in May, and really wanted to buy a new hat – like a nice hat, a really nice hat. I did just that. I bumped my reward up a couple months and bought myself a hat in Nashville. It’s super awesome and I’m in love with it and it’s really the only fun thing I’ve purchased new (unless you think lotions and toothpaste and stuff like that is fun, which hey, you do you.) Every other items I’ve purchased this year has been from the thrift store or somehow secondhand. I’ve also gotten lucky enough to receive some pretty sweet hand-me-down items (hello, new overalls) and I think have been distracted enough by my other resolutions that this goal has not been difficult to accomplish so far. I definitely think it’s something I will continue to do for years to come.

Resolution #4 – Sustainability Through Food – this resolution has been a little tougher, but hey I’m still here and doing it! Mostly this resolution started as a ploy to get myself to garden, but it’s also about cooking at home, meal-prepping and saving money along the way. The gardening has been going great. My garden is finally producing and the harvest is not only delicious but fun and rewarding. If you want to see my recent post on my Garden Check-In you can read it here. The other facets to this resolution have been tougher for sure and have started to slip even more now that we’re in the middle of the year. I’m cooking less and eating out more it feels like, but still not eating out as much as before. I’ve continued to actually pick my groceries up at the store versus having them delivered – Except the occasional Costco delivery, because let’s face it that place can be hell. I’ve been trying a couple different subscription boxes lately to see if that helps with the urge to be lazy. I’m not super duper disappointed in myself, but I know I need to get better. This week I have some meals from HelloFresh that I need to try out. I think it’s just been so busy these past few months that sometimes it’s just easier to grab a pizza or tacos from somewhere else. I’m determined to get back into the swing of meal prepping and making my own food though, so I’ll check back in a few weeks and let you know how that’s going.

Photo by Pixabay on Pexels.com

Resolution #5 – Take Better Care of Your Body – this one has been great, but of course with up and downs. The downs are more due to just being busy and either not having time to hit the gym or not having the energy. I have gotten better about doing exercises at home even if I can’t get to the gym though, and that’s something I was never good with before. Today is a new day, and the beginning of a new month, so I plan on hitting the gym after work for some cycling. The big bummer about this resolution is that the gym was super clean and empty in the beginning since it was brand new. As it’s been open longer it’s gotten more and more crowded which in turn makes it more annoying for me to go. I’ve thought about maybe cancelling the membership and working out more at home instead, but I do enjoy the stationary bike and just can’t see myself purchasing one right now. Overall, I can see a difference in my body since working out more often which is what the goal was. I have definitely lost some weight as well and I am back on the intermittent fasting regiment. Basically what this means is I’m allowing myself to eat between the hours of noon and 8pm and fasting for a full 16 hours in between. Sometimes this time range fluctuates a bit but is always a 16 hour fasting period. I’ve seen big differences in my body and in my mental capacity by fasting this way. The hardest part is the weekends which I do sometimes cheat for. I love a good breakfast and sometimes it’s more fun to do breakfast earlier in the day on a Saturday then to wait for a brunch. I’m also looking forward to more walks in the fall as it’s too hot to take the doggies right now. I know they miss walking but don’t want to risk burning their paws on the asphalt. Luckily, I’m more active in the summertime in general so I think I’m doing fairly well on this resolution so far.

So there you have it – my half-way through the year check in. Overall, I’m pretty proud of myself and can’t wait to stick through it to the end of the year. I’ll continue to keep this blog updated. Let me know in the comments below how your resolutions are going. Are you still staying committed or have the months made you fall off the wagon?

Until next time,

MelissaRose

May 2, NY19 Resolutions Check-In

2019 Resolutions

Hi all! I’m here today with another accountability check-in on my New Year’s resolutions. I’m happy to say that I’m still doing fairly well on all of my goals that I set forth. Let’s get into them in order…

My first New Year’s resolution was to keep up with my blog. I’ll have to admit, lately I haven’t been posting as much as when I first started, but I am still posting. So that’s good. I’m posting almost once a week which was my minimum goal when I started. Unfortunately, the toughest part now is thinking of content to write about. I’ve blogged most of my favorite go-to recipes already and a few posts about thrifting. I think I will have to step up my at home cooking a bit more in order to give myself things to write about. I also need to get better at photographing things I’m up to so that I can post about them. I have already moved my seedlings to the garden and laid down my soaker hose irrigation, but unfortunately did not take any photos so it makes it difficult to illustrate my process in my posts. In order to try and keep up with this resolution, I’m going to try and be better at documenting certain processes and recipes that I can post here.

My third resolution (skipping number two because it was only a two week goal at the beginning of the year) was to not buy anything new. I am doing great with this one despite the occasional urge to splurge. No, really, I went to Target yesterday to get an eyebrow pencil (can’t buy these used), and ended up with an entire basket full of goodies. I looked at the basket and realized that I was getting ready to buy a bunch of stuff I didn’t really need and that would really just end up being a waste of money. I’m proud to say that I put all the items back and left with the items I had intended to buy originally. We all know how difficult this can be at Target, so I’m pretty proud of myself to say the least. I have continued to purchase clothing and other items secondhand when I need to. The only new items I’ve purchased so far are a vacuum cleaner, mascara, an eyebrow pencil and of course other toiletries and cleaning supplies you really can’t buy secondhand. Overall, this is a huge win because I used to frivolously spend pretty often. I am excited to keep this going throughout the rest of the year. Oh! However, I should mention, I will be going to Nashville in May, and I am thinking about rewarding myself at the half way of the year mark (close enough) with a new hat. We will see how that goes…

New Year’s resolution number four is sustainability through food. This one is also going great. I have all of my vegetable seedlings now transferred to the garden and have been watering them regularly to keep them alive and well. Some seem like the recent heat wave may have hit them a bit hard, but I’m hoping they will bounce back. I’ve also been fairly good at not ordering out for food (although this has happened a few times – damn you DoorDash!!). I’ve curbed waste in our home by purchasing dinners in the evenings at the store instead of doing large grocery trips each week. I’m finding that this cuts down on the possibility of menu plans being forgotten or skipped and food being wasted. I’ve also found that it helps keep me more accountable to actually make dinner instead of ordering something that may be less healthy and typically more expensive.

My final resolution was to take better care of my physical form – working out mostly. I’m proud to say that my gym opened a few months ago, and I am now on my 7th (or maybe it’s my 8th? I can’t remember) week of going to the gym at least 3 days a week (I may have had one busy week where I only went once or twice, but did work out at home instead). I’m really enjoying going to the gym, and feel like I’m finally starting to see real results when I look in the mirror. It feels great to put in the work and I find that I’m sleeping better, wanting to eat better, and also waking up feeling more energized than I have in months. This also helps with my evening grocery store trips. My grocery store is right next door to my gym, so swinging by after a workout makes it super convenient and quick to grab stuff for dinner.

Overall, I am happy with my progress this year, and I really feel like this blog has been helping me to build good habits. Going to the gym and cooking every night may not seem like alot, but working a full time job plus managing several freelance opportunities and maintaining a home can be tough. Often it can be difficult to balance my time properly and encourage myself to do things other then sit and watch tv when the days feel so grueling. I’m happy to say that finding new things to keep me busy is not making me more tired but quite the opposite. I’m enjoying the fruits of my labor already and can’t wait to see what I can sow throughout the rest of the year. Thanks for reading!

MelissaRose

March 11, NY19 Resolutions Check-In

2019 Resolutions

It’s been a while since I checked in with how my New Year’s resolutions are going, so I thought I’d write up a quick post to keep myself accountable. If you’re reading this, I hope it helps you to stick to your resolutions as well or maybe to pick back up on them if you’ve fallen off the wagon.

My first resolution is to keep up on my blog, which I am happy to say I think I’ve been doing a fairly good job doing. I’ve been posting almost once a week, and I feel like it’s really helped me to take more pride in the things I’m cooking, the plants I’m planting and the steps I’m taking towards living a more sustainable life. If you want to see what I’ve been up to, go to my home page to scroll through my most recent posts, or use the menu above to browse by category.

My second resolution was a two week detox, which ended a while ago, so I’ll be skipping to resolution #3: No New Things. Resolution #3 is basically a rule I set for myself to not buy anything new in 2019 unless absolutely necessary. So far, I am doing great, as the only things I’ve purchased new are a vacuum cleaner and some hair clips. Both of these items I feel are completely justified as I would never buy either of these things used, and the vacuum cleaner is a huge necessity in our house because of all of our fur babies. Also, I didn’t just go out and purchase a new vacuum for the heck of it, our old one took a crap and so it was necessary to find a replacement. I got an amazing pet-focused vacuum from Kohl’s which I’ve been thrilled with (major #adulting), and the Kohl’s cash program gave me $30 back which I was able to use to purchase new pads for my steam mop. To be honest, sometimes I miss buying new things, but it’s made me even more resourceful and more determined to find things used. I even found a Kitchenaid can opener at the thrift store!

Resolution #4 is sustainability through food. This is a multi-faceted goal including more cooking, less eating out, as well as starting a larger garden. So far, the cooking has been mostly on point with the exception of a few unplanned cheat days. It’s been fun to try new recipes like bagels and lobster tails in lieu of purchasing these items premade at the store or in a restaurant. I’m also finding that the more recipes I try, the more my confidence builds in the kitchen. The more confidence I have the more fun it is for me to try new things and see how many things I can make that I never thought I would before. The lobster tails and bagels (not at the same time LOL) are definitely the most daunting things I’ve tried, but both turned out wonderfully and make me excited to see what I can do next. The gardening has been going pretty great too. I will be getting ready to harden off my seedlings this week to get them ready for the great outdoors. I have one more bed to prep in the backyard before they can move in which I’m hoping to get done either this week or next weekend. The longer days should now help with having more time to get things done. Also, the weather is looking excellent (finally!) so I’m definitely looking forward to spending some time in the yard.

My fifth resolution is a pretty standard goal for most people around New Years, and that is to take better care of my physical form. It’s been a rough go the last couple of months since we’ve been getting a TON of rain. Each weekend that is hasn’t rained though, my husband and I have been taking river walks with our German shepherd Nixie. It’s about a 3.5 mile walk/hike round trip and it’s always a nice little escape and a joy to be out in nature. Also, my new gym finally opened up last week! I’ve been once so far, but I am so excited to continue to go. The place is so clean and new and I love how the machines are set up. It’s been a while since I visited a gym regularly, but I just know that if I can keep myself going for the first couple of weeks I won’t want to stop.

So that’s pretty much it on how I’m doing so far this year. Overall I’m pretty proud of my consistency and progress. I definitely think having this blog and having a place to document everything I’m working on is super helpful.

What about you? How are your resolutions going?

Until next time!

MelissaRose

January 14, NY19 Resolutions Check-In

2019 Resolutions

Today is technically the end of my first New Year’s resolution – a 2 week detox from alcohol, cigarettes and sweets. I’ll admit I didn’t do as great as I wanted, at least with the smoking, but everything else I’ve been fairly solid. I smoked on Wednesday of last week, and while it felt like a small failure, I’m not beating myself up too bad since my goal wasn’t to quit smoking completely. My goal was and is to cut back on smoking and treat it more like drinking I guess. I don’t drink every day, I don’t drink during the day (except on special occasions or mimosas at brunch) and I think I’d like to treat smoking that way as well. So, while I did have a cigarette Wednesday evening, I did not smoke during the day at work or at home at any point and have decided to only smoke socially or when I’m drinking, which I’m good with and completely capable of. Furthermore, I feel that not smoking cigarettes for over a week after smoking for 10+ years is pretty good, especially since I did it cold turkey and without the aid of any sort of supplement such as the patch or gum. I proved to myself that I can quit long enough to get the toxins out of my system, and that’s exactly what I did.

Drinking went almost the full two weeks. I put in a previous post that I had a fairly important birthday party to attend on Saturday and that I was contemplating taking a hiatus from my detox for the occasion. I decided to have that hiatus and so ended up drinking at said party. It was fun, however, I did not anticipate the change in tolerance from not having drank for almost two weeks straight. I may have gone a little overboard, and while I hope I didn’t make a complete fool of myself, I felt it the next day. But I think it was a good lesson learned. I hate the day after drinking. Saturday was such a productive weekend day and it felt so nice to wake up early, get things done and then have time to relax before having more things to attend to. This made Sunday feel so much worse, as I sat on my couch for hours on end, regretting the decisions I made the previous night. Overall, it made me realize that moderation is key, and that I don’t have to drink at every occasion just because other people are drinking. I’m capable of saying no, and capable of sticking to it.

The one thing I’ve stuck to my guns to the entire two weeks is no sweets. This isn’t too difficult for me as I don’t have much of a sweet tooth to begin with. Not that I don’t like the occasional cookie or bowl of ice cream now and then, but I didn’t feel any terrible cravings over the past two weeks. I think I’ll keep this one going too. I’m already seeing good changes in my body from the lack of drinking and lack of sweets. I’ve also started drinking an apple cider vinegar drink in the mornings which I hope will help to propel my progress. Overall, I still feel better during the day with more energy and am sleeping better at night. My biological clock has changed as well. I’m waking up each morning before my alarm at around 5:50am. The best part is actually getting up and ready for work in the morning with time to spare. This spare time is used to walk my dogs if weather permits, and I love having the extra time outside before being confined to an office all day.

I’m also still sticking to my meal prepping and planning. I did my shopping for the week on Saturday morning. I once again purchased the majority of my product from the Farmer’s Market which is great because part of my resolution is to stop with convenience and start supporting more local causes. I have some rather tasty meals planned for the week, a couple of which are new that I’m excited to try and hopefully blog about. I haven’t purchased anything new as part of my no buying anything new resolution for the entire year. And, like I said, I’ve continued to walk in the mornings as part of my resolution to take better care of my body (my gym is still not open… need to check on the progress of that).

I’m proud of my progress and the lessons I’ve learned along the way. I’m excited to get to tackling my other resolutions as well, mostly the gardening. I believe I’ll need to purchase my seeds soon for starting indoors. I’ve been pinning upcycled ideas for planters like crazy and can’t wait to see what other ones I can come up with. All in all, I’m excited and looking forward to the next steps.

How are your resolutions or goals going for the year? Is there anything you’ve learned about yourself so far?

MelissaRose

January 8, NY19 Resolutions Check-In

2019 Resolutions

Today marks the eighth day of the New Year and so the eighth day of working on my 2019 resolutions. So far, so good. I have reached the half-way point in my two week detox. I have not had a cigarette, a drink or a sweet since December 31, 2018. I can’t say that it’s been incredibly easy, although it hasn’t been terribly challenging either. Like I said in my previous check-in on January 3rd, the most difficult time was Wednesday night during band practice. This will come around again tomorrow. I do not think it will be as tough as the first week. Having other people over drinking and smoking does present temptation, however. The other part that was difficult at first was coming back to work. Smoke breaks at work were a good little stop in the day to sit on my phone and not think about anything. Without smoking, I don’t find myself taking the same breaks. Also, as I said in my previous check-in, I think that smoking is more of a habit for me than a physical addiction, and so not being able to follow through on that habit was a bit difficult the first couple of days back at work even though I had already gone six days without a cigarette.

My other resolutions have been going well also. I’m continuing to follow my meal prep plan with prepared lunches and planned out dinners. I am not stick to my original meal schedule so to speak, but I’m not going out to eat or grabbing fast food for lunch. I’ve been cooking dinner every night and preparing lunches and breakfasts in the morning for my husband and I. It’s been nice actually. I always feel better when I eat food from home. Fast food just makes me feel so sluggish. I really don’t know why I ever go back when cooking can be so easy. Speaking of, I don’t want to do a full post highlighting this since it isn’t really a recipe, but the easiest and most delicious cheap lunch idea came to me last week – homemade frozen bean burritos. Seriously, it sounds crazy, but I made some frozen burritos at home this weekend. I used one can of vegetarian refried beans, a can of Rotel, some shredded Mexican cheese and tortillas. I wrapped it all up together into a burrito (all together it made four decent sized burritos) then wrapped the burrito in parchment paper and placed in a ziploc bag for freezing. The next day, I put the burritos in little containers for us to take to work. It only took about a minute and a half to heat them up and they were delicious! This was a great discovery for me because it’s so cheap and easy to prep. I will be saving this idea and using it in the future.

My last resolution is to take better care of my physical form. I’m happy to report that I’ve been successful with this also. I’ve been waking up at 6am every morning with enough time to have a cup of coffee, get ready for work and take our dogs on a walk. The pups really love the extra attention and I’m finding that I really enjoy the extra jump-start to my morning. I haven’t officially started working out yet since the gym I joined hasn’t opened yet, but I’m hoping they will soon so that I can get back into some light weightlifting as well. All in all, the lack of toxins, the light exercise and the healthy sleep pattern have made me feel amazing! I have more energy throughout the day, I fall asleep faster and sleep better and I find myself looking forward to getting home and making dinner.

This weekend may be more tough than the last, however, to stick to my resolution guns. My husband and I are supposed to attend a pirate themed 30th birthday party on Saturday. This is only three days away from the end of my two week detox. I’m struggling with the thought of cheating for the one day so I can enjoy myself versus sucking it up and finishing out the detox. A part of me thinks it would be fine to do it for one day, and then to maybe extend the detox afterwards to the following weekend, thus giving myself almost another entire week of detox. But another part of me says I need to stick it out. It’s a difficult decision too because it’s a family member’s birthday party, and I don’t want them to think I’m not having fun or being a party pooper. Decisions, decisions. I guess I will have to get through the week to see what I end up wanting to do. I’m still so torn at this point. Gah – what would you do?

Anyway, I hope everyone is having a great start to their year. It feels like it’s flying by already doesn’t it? Until next time…

MelissaRose

January 3, NY19 Resolutions: Detox, Walking, Meal-Planning

2019 Resolutions

Today is officially day 3 of working on my New Year’s resolutions. So far, the main challenges have been resolution #1 (keeping up with my blog) and resolution #2 (two week detox). I should also mention that I didn’t make a dedicated description blog for resolution #5 because I felt it was pretty self explanatory (working out, better physical care). I am proud to say that it is day 3, and I have not had any alcohol, cigarettes, or sweets, and I’ve walked every day except the first (because hello New Year’s Eve regrets). So far it hasn’t been too tough other than band practice on the second day. Band practice is the evening where the band gets together, plays and writes music, and drinks beer (and some of us smoke). I think this night was especially difficult because smoking for me is such a habit based addiction. I don’t feel that I crave it physically in my body so much as I just feel like I’m supposed to be doing it because I’ve done it in this time and place so many times before… a bad habit. Not drinking isn’t as difficult for me, plus I know if I were to slip up and have a drink I’d just want a cigarette even more – thank you alcohol for keeping me honest. Anywho, it’s going pretty good so far, and I think I am already seeing some of the benefits.


Taking walks has been so nice! I really love being outside with my dogs, even if it does feel freezing cold outside. Today we visited a local coffee shop that has amazing breakfast burritos. We got coffee and sat with our burritos in the park. It’s so nice to be able to enjoy the clean, fresh air without wanting a cigarette. I think another benefit I’m feeling already is my sleep. I feel as if I’ve slept far more soundly than usual and feel like it’s easier to initially fall asleep as well. I don’t know if this is an actual side effect of detoxing from nicotine, but I’ll take what I can get. Today was supposed to be the most difficult day for cravings. I read online in several places that once you’ve quit for 72 hours that the nicotine is 100% out of your system. I find it incredible that the changes can happen this fast. Again, I don’t feel like I’ve really had too many physical cravings, and being at home (I took the week off work) I think makes the habit part of it easier to ignore since I don’t typically smoke much when I’m at home anyhow.


Being on vacation at home has been nice. It’s given me time to really reflect as well as research and keep up on some of my resolutions. I still have 3 days left in which I plan to meal plan, prep and shop for the coming week. I think what I want to do is a rice, hummus, vegetable bowl that I used to meal prep for lunches, and maybe some egg muffins for breakfast. I’ll post the recipes for them later one once I’m able to get some decent photos. I’m also looking forward to trying out some new bread recipes. I either want to make my own bread bowls for soup or some sandwich bread to cut down on grocery costs (the bread we buy now is over $5 a loaf). So far in the New Year, it’s been a lot of take out and fast food – which is fine to me right now since I haven’t been grocery shopping and since I haven’t been getting any of it delivered (ha, go me!). My favorite eat-out meal so far has been the new Beyond Famous Star burger from Carl’s JR. Seriously, if you’re a vegetarian, go try this thing, it’s bomb.

Well, I think that’s all for now. This has been my first accountability check for 2019 and so far so good.

Do you have any favorite bread or meal prep recipes you’d like to share? How are your New Year’s resolutions going?

MelissaRose

NY19 Resolution #4: Sustainability Through Food

2019 Resolutions

When I was about 10 years old, my parents decided to escape suburban life and move to the country. We lived on several acres, had loads of animals (eventually) and my mom always had a huge garden. She would plant gobs of tomatoes, zucchini, peppers, squash, berries, fruit trees and pretty much anything else you can think of. In the winter, she’d continue to garden by swapping out the beds with crops that could withstand the cold like lettuce, kale and garlic (to name a few). My siblings and I loved to sit in the garden and eat fruits and veggies right off the vine. The gardens were a great way for my parents to feed four kids and save a little bit of money, all while creating special memories.

Last year, armed with a shovel and a bit of nostalgia, I attempted a garden of my own. My backyard already had two decently sized raised planter beds that I filled with tomatoes, cherry tomatoes, squash, zucchini and a couple different types of peppers. The tomatoes went crazy as did the zucchini and the squash, the peppers didn’t do as good, but I was able to get a couple of items from each plant. It was so nice to be able to reach for organic homegrown vegetables and not have to pay outrageous prices. All it took was the starting money to buy the fertilizer and the plants plus a little elbow grease. This year, I want to make the garden even better and make the process cheaper too. I’m going to use the same two beds as last year, but this year I’m also going to dig up a planter bed on my side yard that I grew dahlias and daisies in last year. To save money, I am going to start my plants from seeds earlier in the year instead of buying plants. This will take a bit more work, but I think in the long run will be much more satisfying. Who knows, maybe I can grow extra plants and give them away!

This resolution is about becoming more sustainable overall when it comes to food in general. Not only do I hope to grow more of my own food, I hope to make more of it as well. I’ve already been learning to make my own breads, the next thing I’d like to start learning is sauces, pasta, and other items I can make ahead of time instead of purchasing from the store. I’d also like to get back into meal prepping lunches and breakfasts and being better at making dinners at home rather than ordering in. Lastly, I need to get better about physically going to the store to get my groceries instead of ordering online for pickup and delivery. Every once in a great while would be fine to use it, but the amount of money I waste on having things delivered is really adding up. This resolution shouldn’t be too challenging overall, and I’m excited to see what I can learn and accomplish while working through it.

Do you follow any of these rules regularly? How do you live a more sustainable life through your food?

MelissaRose

NY19 Resolution #3: Sustainability // No New Things

2019 Resolutions

We live in a world that is driven by hardcore consumerism. Every holiday and event presents its own opportunity to purchase something new, whether it be a gift, a card, an outfit, a pair of shoes – pretty much anything as long as you’re able to find justification. It seems a little crazy to me that we are all so ready to spend crazy amounts of money at any time on things we don’t need or on things that we give to others that they don’t really need. Now, don’t get me wrong, I love gift-giving as much as the next person and I guess what this epiphany is for me isn’t necessarily about not spending money but about being more thoughtful about what I’m spending my money on.

Throughout 2018 I made a conscious effort to quit spending money on fast-fashion, and can actually proudly say that I did not spend a single dime on clothing from Forever 21, H&M or Target. I did buy some jeans from Levi’s and a couple things from Nordstrom but that’s another story about my fashion needs altogether. But this year I am upping the ante – no purchasing anything brand new, and this is everything – no clothing, home items, kitchen accessories, bathroom decor, etc. Pretty much anything that isn’t a COMPLETE necessity, I am not going to purchase brand new. This does leave open a loop-hole – notice I say “I’m not purchasing anything brand new” not “I’m not purchasing anything at all”. The second-hand market is absolutely incredible. If you haven’t checked it out yet, I encourage you to check out my Videos tab and take a look at some of the things I’ve been able to score in 2018 alone.

So this year I’m going full thrift, and there’s a couple of reasons why. #1: Money – you can save a TON of money by buying things second hand. Sure, you may not find it exactly when you need it, but if you keep a running list of items you need and check the stores each time you go, you’re bound to find it eventually. This can range from clothing items, dish ware, kitchen appliances, blankets, decor and more. I have found some of my favorite clothing items, my most treasured home decor items and some of the COOLEST things at my local thrift store. And thrift stores aren’t the only place open for business – there are garage sales, online second hand (such as Poshmark, Faceboook Marketplace and Craigslist), flea markets, closet swaps, estate sales and so many other unique opportunities to purchase other peoples no longer loved items. Reason #2: The planet – tons of items we no longer love make their way to our landfills every day. The garbage piles up higher and higher while we continue to purchase new things, only to end up adding those to the mountain of possessions we used to treasure. This kind of consumerism needs to stop. There is absolutely no reason or excuse for it, and with all of the items already circulating from purchase to dumping, it seems a waste to not pass on our used items to other people who might find great joy in them. Let’s end this cycle of buying cheap and tossing quickly to help save our planet from being swallowed up by waves and waves of garbage.

This challenge for me is very exciting. I love thrifting and find great joy in the hunt for things that I need. I’ve even purchased gifts from the thrift store that would have been better than anything I could have afforded brand new, and felt great pride in being able to give something that was not only useable and of great value but was not something that was going to fall apart in a month or end up in the garbage. Being sustainable in this aspect is something that is very important to me, and I anticipate this will be a large part of my blog as well as my YouTube channel simply because it is something that I am passionate about and would love to educate and inspire others to do the same.

Today is the last day of 2018, and I am looking forward to starting all of my resolutions tomorrow. We are having some people over for a fancy New Years Eve party with drinks, games and food which should be an excellent time. I am excited to ring in the New Year with close friends and celebrate all of the strides I am going to take in 2019 to better my life and the lives of others. If you’re enjoying what you’re seeing or know of someone who might enjoy it, please share this page with them. I’m always looking for like-minded people to connect with and to help keep myself encouraged as well as to inspire change in others. I hope you all have a safe and Happy New Year – Cheers to 2019!

MelissaRose

NY19 Resolution #2: Two Week Detox

2019 Resolutions

My first New Year’s resolution is fairly simple – post in my blog about my New Year’s resolution 2-3 times per week. My second resolution gets a little bit more challenging. This resolution is something that I think about and truly wonder “why I’m doing this to myself”. Let’s talk a little bit about detox. Official definition:

A process or period of time in which one abstains from or rids the body of toxic or unhealthy substances; detoxification.

Fairly straight forward, right? You would think so, but there are so many variations of detox. Detox diets, detox from alcohol, detox from drugs, 24 hour full-body detox, detox teas, colon cleanses, natural detox – seriously, just do a web search for “detox”. Are you seeing the pattern? So when I tell you that my New Year’s resolution is a two week detox, here is what I mean:

For two weeks I am going to abstain from alcohol, cigarettes and sugary foods. This is going to be tough. It’s going to suck, but in the end I know I will feel better. I should also mention that two weeks is a starting point. I would like to be able to continue to use less of these items moving forward, and my plan is to create some good habits within that two week period. I feel like I’m writing out a contract to myself on the internet (hello, accountability). This is why I’m posting, this is why I’m here. It’s written down and now I must do it. And I will do it because it’s going to be worth it. Okay, now that’s out of the way.

A two week detox like this is something I’ve been wanting to do for a while, but with my birthday in Las Vegas, and the holidays (which let’s face it, start with Halloween), life has been one big party lately. I am happy that the New Year is giving me a jumping off point and that New Year’s Eve will be a big celebration to ring it all in. After all, good health is something to celebrate.

The benefits of two weeks without alcohol are pretty crazy. (I found these results on PrioryGroup.com. Priory Group is a mental healthcare and rehabilitation services provider.) Your body becomes more hydrated, your REM cycles become more frequent and you have more energy. Not only that, you’re likely to lose weight because of all the calories in alcohol that you’re no longer consuming. Did you know, one glass of wine is equal to an entire ice cream cone? (Drinkaware.) Yikes. It’s benefits like this that make me excited to kick this resolutions butt. The benefits of quitting smoking for two weeks are even better – increased circulation in your teeth and gums, sense of smell and taste are returning to normal, decreased cravings and increased lung and heart functions. That is a whole lot of good in a short period of time. It’s almost unbelievable to me that your body can change so much in such a short amount of time simply by removing something unhealthy out of your life.

I’m not pursuing this resolution to lose weight, I want that out there. I think it’s a great benefit don’t get me wrong, but my motivation is mostly to prove to myself that I can do it and to rid myself of the toxins I’ve been pumping for the last two months. I can’t wait to see my progress and to document it along the way.

Now, time to find all those holiday cookies and eat them before January 1st…

MelissaRose