Changing Life one Step at a Time

After I saw my regular doctor last week I made an appointment with my psychiatrist to discuss my med dosages. We both agreed that now that I’ve lost about 140 pounds that my meds may actually be too strong. She lowered one med from the highest dose to the lowest dose while keeping everything else the same. She said I should know in a few days if the change in the medicine is helping. If not, there may be a more pressing problem related to an auto-immune attack on my body in 2012. Fingers crossed that things start improving.

The side hustling begins…

After staring at a picture of this rocking chair I had taken at a variety store on Sunday, Monday I decided to buy the piece and have a go at this whole flipping furniture business.

So I bought this puppy for about $50. The “pillow” on the back is just something that another owner had fashioned to create a softer back rest. I loved the detail on the wood. I know it’s an antique, but I don’t know exactly how old. I will show pictures of the progress as I go along. I took the first layer off and found this fabric. Very interesting. I’ll update more on that tomorrow.

In other news I won the eBay auction for a Cricut Explorer Air 2 in a denim blue color. I can’t wait to get it and start learning things about it. I’m hoping to find some good deals on supplies online. As soon as the season starts, I’ll be hitting up the yard sales like a mad woman.


Looking Into My Options

I have not been working officially for almost 6 years now. There are many factors for that (mostly health). I really want to be able to find things that I can to help bring in some income to our household. I have been reading thrifty topics for years online, but I’m sometimes not that great at applying the things I’ve learned about thrifty living. So in comes my idea…


I have several ideas for side hustles that I can do. All involve some sort of artistic aspect.

My first side hustle idea is to flip furniture. I’m really excited about the idea of turning something old into something new and useful again. Friday BJ and I went to some variety stores that sell these type of items. I took a ton of pictures with my phone to see what kinds of things were being sold. I really got some great ideas. One store was more of the flipped furniture while the other had more handmade art pieces. The items in both stores intrigued me. I feel really positive that I can do this. I’m slowly going to be buying as many supplies and pieces to refurbish as I can. I was absolutely shocked that there were all these painted mason jars that were selling for such high prices. I literally have over 100 mason jars that I bought a couple years ago when I was going to learn to can. I do still plan on learning to can at some point, but I’ve got to pick one thing at a time.  I tend to jump around all over the place with my projects which is a personality trait I inherited from my grandfather.

My second side hustle idea is to buy a vinyl cutter machine and to make as many different and cool things as I can. They aren’t cheap, but I think I could end up making my money back fairly easily. There are just so many options for what you can do with these machines. I would like to do things like make shopping bags, shirts, decals of all kinds, things to add to my flipped furniture pieces. I am planning on getting one soon. We’ll see how that all turns out.

Now for the non-hustle things going on with me right now.

I’m gathering magazines and cutting out pictures to decoupage things like envelopes I send to my pen pals, art pieces, and perhaps even furniture. I’ve put some ads out online to see if I can get free magazines to cut pictures out of. My mom gave me a few, and I’m getting a good collection. The best full-page pictures I’m going to try to make envelopes out of. I have something called an envelope punch that I’m going to use to make them with.

I’ve been doing a little thrift store shopping. I’m mostly looking at items that can be used for decorating my pen pal letters and my art. I was lucky enough to find some nice clothes at a store that was having a 50% off everything in the store. I found some great yarn to practice my crochet too. Thrift stores are the absolute best!

I have been getting some super deals off of Amazon from deal groups on Facebook. It’s rather addicting, but I made a special group just for myself where I can share my favorite items. I am currently waiting on an Amazon Echo Dot that I ordered off of eBay, and I can’t wait to see how it works. My cousin who is employed by Amazon said that I wouldn’t be disappointed.

I have a lot of ideas for things to do over the next few days. We’ll see if they all get done. I’m experiencing some extreme fatigue. I had bloodwork, and it all came back normal. My doctor said some of my meds might be dosed too high since I’ve lost so much weight.

I will end for now, but I will be updating again later today.

Lucy isn’t especially concerned with anything right now.


The Changes I’ve Been Making

As my mother always says to me “life marches on”, and so it does. I have continued my weight loss. I’m now at around 145 pounds lost overall. I don’t really recognize myself in the mirror, or in pictures for that matter. It’s a joy to be able to fit into clothes that I’ve never dreamed of wearing in my adult life.

BJ and I went to our first hockey game a few weeks ago. It was in an arena where we had been to a concert several years ago. At the time I was around 300, and I didn’t fit comfortably in the seat. As I sat down in my seat to watch the game I literally asked BJ, “are these the same chairs that were here when we went to the concert?” Indeed they were, and I had plenty of room on each side of me. It was a comfortable fit.

This is a never-ending journey. I still have a lot of work to do. I need to be working on my exercise and eating habits.

I went to a plastic surgeon a few weeks ago to inquire about getting the excess skin on my abdomen removed. Some of the surgery may be covered by insurance, but the part of my abdomen that bothers me the worst is not going to be covered. I am not sure when I will be able to get this surgery done, but I am going to do my dead-level best to make it happen. I already have so much more self-confidence that I’ve ever had in my whole life.




Let’s Start…

Comparison Shot

This comparison shot doesn’t show where I really began. I’ve been obese most of my life, and in 2008 I decided to get a gastric bypass at the weight of 290 after losing weight from 330. It could’ve been the worst possible time in my life to get such a life-changing surgery. I was diagnosed shortly after with bipolar disorder. I did of course at the time lose weight. There’s no way I couldn’t with my insides rearranged. I quickly lost weight, and in early 2009 I had lost 91 pounds. I wasn’t eating the way I was supposed to, and then I slowly started gaining weight. Before I knew what was going on, I was back to 335 pounds. I had suffered thru several significant life problems including my inability to keep working due to the bipolar, struggles with the side effects of medication, not taking care of myself at all, and self-punishment for the things I felt I was a failure at. My husband, BJ and I decided to become vegan in 2012 and eventually settled on becoming vegetarians in the end. We continue to be vegetarians to this day. I must say it has drastically improved our bloodwork levels especially our cholesterol numbers. I did try to start exercising in 2014. I joined the local hospital’s health center. I jumped in full force by exercising with excessive vigor. I ended up injuring my foot, which eventually required a foot surgery with a long recovery. I finally had decided I had to get to where I needed to be health and weightwise in early January 2015. I joined the online version of Weight Watchers. I slowly started losing weight, and after losing quite a bit of weight I decided in the middle of 2016 to stop paying for monitoring weight loss and downloaded the MyFitnessPal app for my iPhone. It worked just fine. It wasn’t until early 2017 that I knew things weren’t going to work for me unless I decided to start exercising. I started out by walking in my neighborhood. As the weather heated up I started walking on a treadmill I had purchased back in 2010 and had rarely used. I have now gotten up to walking at least 2.5 miles each day with an occasional 3.1-mile walk to show myself that I can walk a 5k if I wanted to. I also have started doing gentle Hatha yoga. I enjoy it and have plans on doing more as well as getting stronger in my practice. I’m currently at 206 pounds, and I am dreaming of the day I can get to underneath 200 pounds. I know it will come. This is just the first way I’m rewriting myself. I’ll get into other ways in other posts.