Spring/summer garden update – week 4

It’s been 3 weeks since I sowed my cucumbers, tomatoes, chilli and capsicum into the individual containers. This is an update on how they are going.

Cucumbers - 1 week later
Cucumbers – 1 week later

On 24th of August, only a week after sowing, was the first sign my cucumbers where growing. The picture below was taken on the 24th. I became very excited to see that I would have cucumbers this summer.

Only 2 weeks since sowing I thought I better get the veggie patch ready. From experience, I know the cucumbers will grow very quickly so I weeded the patch, turned over the soiled, put some compost and blood n’ bone in the soil and gave it a good water. It is important to put the blood n’ bone in the soil at least 2 weeks before planting. Otherwise the blood n’ bone will be too harsh on the plants and they could die. Excitingly I found 2 carrot stouts in the patch when I was weeding. I’ve kept them in the ground and will sow some more carrots with them.

Carrots - 7 Sep 15
Carrots
Carrots - 7 Sep 15
Carrots

One of the tomato plant had germinated and a little sprout appeared at 2 weeks. The cucumbers are continuing to grow well too. I make an effort to bring all the containers into shelter at night and put a towel over the top of them to protect them from the nights cold. This method seems to be working so far. In the mornings I put them out in the sun and put some more water over them if they look like they’re getting dry. There were a couple of rainy/windy days where I bought them into the shelter but as soon as the sun was out I took them out again.

Tomato - 2 weeks later

                                                          Tomato – 2 weeks after sow

Cucumbers - 2 weeks later

                                                    Cucumbers – 2 weeks after sow

On the 4th of September, almost 3 weeks after sowing, I noticed one of the chilli plants had germinated. Lets just say I got very excited then. You can see it, very tiny, on the top right of the picture.

Chilli germiated - almost 3 weeks later
Chilli germination – almost 3 weeks after sow

I also notice the tomato had another sprout next to it. I find having 2 sprouts next to each other is harder to maintain when they are fully grown so I decided to pull out the second sprout and put it in one of the other tomato containers. Hopefully it continues to grow.

Tomatoes - 3 weeks later
2 tomato sprouts

In addition, my parsley and tomato plant (bigger one) are still doing well. The tomato plant, which I found started growing on it’s own in a random pile of dirt next to my veggie patch, didn’t continue to grow when I transplanted it into a pot a couple of months ago but it didn’t die either. I think now the weather is warming up it is shooting up the steak.

Parsley - 7 Sep 15
Parsley – 7 Sep 15
Tomato (germinated in dirt next to patch) - 7 Sep 15
Tomato – 7 Sep 15

 

In summary, I have 3 cucumber seedlings, 2 tomato seedlings and a bigger tomato plant, 1 chilli seedling, 2 carrot sprouts and a fully grown parsley plant.

Cucumbers - 3 weeks later
Cucumbers – 3 weeks after sowing
Chilli plant - 3 weeks later
Chilli – 3 weeks after sowing

I’ll keep you posted on their growth.

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I MADE IT MONDAY – 24 August 15

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So I made it to Monday again. One of my best achievements is number 1. I hope to continue to move forward and have more achievements.

  1. I managed to figure out what I want to do in life and made a life changing decision. I’m going to leave my current job of 12 years and starting a fitness course soon to become a personal trainer. I’m very excited!
  2. I am looking after my seeds by making sure they have plenty of water, sunshine and bring them in from the cold each night. Hopefully I see them germinate soon.
  3. This week I increased my steps to 12,000 on my fitbit and strived to come first in my challenge this week. I didn’t win but I did claim second place getting 61,712 step in 5 days. That’s averagely over 12,000 steps each day.
  4. On Wednesday I had to write a document for work. It took me most of the day to write it needing to proof read it again and again. My boss complimented me on how well it was written. I am very proud of myself.
  5. My daughter is having her birthday party next weekend. I have managed to plan ahead and stayed under budget so far. I’m especially proud that I have not bought any lollies and instead I am making healthy snacks to feed everyone. I hope it is a success.

I hope to achieve more next week and looking forward to starting my course soon.

Happy reading. And I want to say thank you for following me (if you are). Your support helps a lot.

K

Spring gardening – sowing seeds

Tomato, cucumber, capsicum and chilli seeds - sowed 16 Aug 15

August is a great month. Not only is it the month of my daughters birthday, it is the month I start my spring/summer plants for my veggie patch and pots.

Last year I started growing from seed rather than buying seedlings from the nursery. I like the idea of growing organic plus I love watching seeds growing into seedlings then plants. I bought my seeds online from an organic seller.

A week ago I sowed my seeds into little containers recycling old seedling pots and fruit containers. I am using some of the containers like a greenhouse keeping the moisture in. Also bringing the seeds in at night and put them back out in the sun in the morning. I hope this action will increase the chance of my seeds germinating well.

The seeds I’ve sowed are tomatoes, cucumbers, capsicums (peppers) and chillies (chilli peppers).

I hope to see some germination (seeds growing into a seedling) in the next week. It usually takes about 10-14 days for germination to occur depending on what type of seed is growing.

I’ll post updates as they grow.

K

Made a life changing decision

Hi everyone,

I would like to tell you some great news!

I have finally figured out what I want to do in life. My current job of 12 years will be coming to an end and I’ll be changing careers.

I’m going to become a Personal Trainer!!! Yay!

The other day I signed on to complete a fitness course which I hope to do over the next 6 months. Depending on what I’m doing after the course I will most likely do a nutrition course under the same institute.

I am very excited to say that I’ll finally get to do what I’m passionate about…..helping people become as healthy as they can be. I want to educate others on how to take control of their lives, become healthy/healthier and live their lives to the fullest. I’m very passionate in the prevention on illnesses and diseases. Throughout my life I have noticed people eat bad food as part of their lifestyle and they don’t think about diabetes, heart disease etc until it’s too late and their having to take medications. I hope to change lives in the future through education and encouragement.

I am the happiest I have been in a long time. Wish I made this decision sooner.

My course starts in a week. Wish me luck.

K

I MADE IT MONDAY – 17 August 15

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Hi everyone,

I feel like I am on my way to improving. Lately I’ve found my goals running away from me…..or I might be running from them ha ha! Either way I’ve felt lost and I think I am finding my way again. My motivation is slowly coming back as I think of new ways to improve my health.

The following is what I’ve achieved this past week:

  1. Between Tuesday and Friday I managed to do over 10,000 steps each day. This included over 15,000 on Thursday and winning a fitbit challenge on Friday by doing 14,898 steps. This is the first win of a fitbit challenge.
  2. I made a great healthy chicken soup on the weekend. It was full of goodness and even better the whole family loved it.
  3. I spoke to my husband and expressed my feelings towards sugary foods. We’ve decided that once the sugary snacks are gone in our cupboard we won’t buy anymore and concentrate on natural foods such as fruit.
  4. I planted some seeds yesterday. Tomatoes, cucumbers, capsicums and chilies. I hope they’re successful this season.
  5. There was quite a bit of sunshine this past week. When I could I got outside and absorbed as much vitamin D as possible.

I hope to write more posts for the rest of the month as I’ve been a bit absent lately.

Thanks for reading.

K

I MADE IT MONDAY – 3 August 15

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This past week has been horrible. So many emotions and feelings of confusion. But I have promised to write a post each Monday on what I have achieved. So here it is.

1. Firstly, and this is a big achievement, I managed to challenge my negative thinking. I wont go into details but trust me when I say this accomplishment has not always been achieved in the past.

2. I have not stopped having my healthy oat breakfast. Best start of the day.

3. Communication, I have overcome my desire to keep things to myself and instead had the courage to speak up.

4. On the weekend, I woke up feeling horrible. It was my day to sleep in and I think I slept too much. But I didn’t let that get me down. I found motivation and used it to get going. Spent just over an hour to get all of the housework done, after lunch we took the kids to the pool and then went grocery shopping. Motivation is key to get started each day but finding it can be difficult at times.

5. On Saturday I went into the city via bus and train. On the way home the next bus that stops close to home wasn’t going to arrive for another 30 minutes so I decided to take a different bus which stopped near home but not as close as my usual bus. I walked the rest of the way which took about 20 minutes. I took the opportunity to not take the easy way and walked the extra distance.

That was easier to do than I thought it would. I encourage everyone to write down their achievements each week or even each day. You don’t need to be on a health journey like me. Everyone can benefit from it.

Thanks for reading.

K

July – end of month summary

It’s that time of the month again. So we have reached August already and honestly the past month has been a lot of ups and downs.

Since the last month summary I have mentioned about my garden. My parsley was growing well and apart from being smaller because I’ve used a bit in my cooking the parsley is still growing well. A follower asked me to talk more about my gardening so I put up a post on what I have learnt and grown in the last few years. The growing my own fruit, vegetable and herbs post has lots of picture of past and present successes. I’ve not always succeeded in growing all my vegetables, especially those I have grown from seed. But I do love growing from seed, it’s so much fun seeing them growing from nothing to a massive plant.

I’m happy to say that I put up my very first recipe in July. It is chow mein mince and the great thing about this recipe is it has heaps of veggies in it. If you love chow mein and lots of veggies go have a look.

A friend of mine asked me what I eat on an average day. At that time I was having oats with chia seeds, linseeds, cinnamon and blueberries for breakfast. I still eat this as I find it has everything I need and it keeps we full for longer. For lunch I was eating premade soups that I would freeze and defrost each day. At the moment I am still eating soups or dinner leftovers that I have frozen in single serves. For dinner I was aiming for meals with a little meat and heaps of vege; however, I’ve not kept at that over the month. Tough times have caused me to loose my motivation and either hubby has cooked or I have not filled the plate with the good vegetables we all should get. I’m hoping to get my motivation back soon.

In my temptations post I spoke of how easy it is to give into temptations when trying to change bad eating habits. Specifically when having a work gathering with lots of chocolates, chips, processed food and cake. Just over a week later I wrote a post on refocusing. The temptations post inspired me to refocus and write about it. I mentioned 6 goals I wanted to achieve: drink more water, exercise, eat fruit for snacks and a handful of raw nuts and seeds each day, focus on better posture and decrease my sugar intake. It’s been a fortnight since that post and I still aim for these goals but yet to achieve.

In July I started a weekly post called “I made it Monday.” This post is to look at the achievements rather than failures of the week. I have promised to write down 5 achievements each week. The “I made it Monday” post started on 29 June where I started taking omega 3 and 6. On the week prior to 6 July I got up early each morning and prepared a slow cooked meal full of goodness for that evenings dinner. On post 13 July I mentioned that I ate my healthy oat breakfast each morning and achieve great amount of steps the week prior of 20 July. Then the last post of the month on 27 July I achieved the most with both getting second place in my fitbit challenge and doing my 7 minute workout most mornings of the week. These achievements mentioned were only a few of the many accomplished over the month.

Don’t hesitate to have a look at any posts that take your interest. I am hoping, as always, to keep achieving more, learning and implementing changes each month throughout my journey to great health.

Thanks for reading.

K

I MADE IT MONDAY – 27 July 15

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I’m happy to say that I did so much better then past week. Very happy after not going so well the two weeks before.

So what have I achieved this past week:

1. Five days of the seven I started the day with a 7 minute work out. This doesn’t sound like much, but with little time in the mornings getting up and doing some sort of exercise is better than none. I noticed I woke up quicker and had more energy without the sluggish feeling.

2. I’m very proud of this next accomplishment. The following are the amount of steps I took each day:

Monday: 16,223

Tuesday: 15,118

Wednesday: 11,387

Thursday: 11,677

Friday: 10,126

Saturday: 5,380

Sunday: 2,769

On an average work day, I might get just over 10,000 steps. Not only did I achieve this each work day, I managed to get over 15,000 steps on Monday and Tuesday. This resulted in me achieving second place in my fitbit challenge with my friends!!!

3. I continued to eat my healthy oat breakfast EACH morning. I didn’t cheat on the weekends. Even made it for the kids a couple of times. They love it. WIN WIN!

4. I increased my knowledge this week. Currently doing a bioscience short course and learning 300 medical terms. It’s hard but I buckled down and learnt. Glad to say that I am remembering the information. I am getting good scores in the quizzes. Great achievement.

5. This past week I am not only getting my body healthy, I am getting my mind healthy too. In addition to learning my bioscience course, I am keeping my brain active with a brain training app. Each night I have spent 5-10 minutes on the app to increase my memory, numeracy, reasoning and perception. My achievement is that I haven’t skip a day. Even when I had a massive headache the other day, I made sure I did my training when I was up to it.

What have you achieved this past week?

K

I MADE IT MONDAY – 20 July 15

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Not the greatest of weeks last week, but that is not going to hold me back with figuring out my achievements. No matter what it is best to look at the positives rather than let the negatives take over. These are the five things I achieved over the past seven days:

1. One of my fitbit friends invited me to a challenge to see who can walk/run the most steps by the end of the week. There were about 7 people in the challenge. On the last day I realised I wasn’t far from the person in front of me so this gave me the motivation to walk more that day. There was an opportunity to walk quite some distance to pick up my new work jacket and so I went for a walk. Unfortunately I got wet from the rain but I did manage to get to 10,000 steps by lunch time. This is surprising as I don’t always get to 10,000 steps at the end of each day let alone by midday. Very proud.

2. Every morning including over the weekend I ate my healthy oat, blueberry, linseed, chia seed and cinnamon breakfast. Great start of each day.

3. I didn’t achieve the 2 litres of water each day but I was conscious of it. Throughout the week I started with a heap of water in the morning and had my water bottle close by. I intend to drink more in the future.

4. On Tuesday I woke up early and did my 7 minute workout. It doesn’t sound like much but I already wake up very early and getting enough sleep is just as important as exercise. I have learnt that exercise in the morning increases your metabolism for those seeking weight loss, increases energy level and mental alertness and it will most likely start your day in a good mood. These reasons are why I want to get some exercise, even as little as 7 minutes, each morning. Now I just need to get rid of this cold.

5. This week I’ve given into temptations and not eaten as well as I should. At the end of the week I have come to realise this and starting to refocus. This upcoming week I intend to not let my temptations get the better of me and instead I WILL take hold of my health. Refocusing, to me, is an achievement. Making a choice to learn from my weaknesses and find strength.

This upcoming week WILL have more successes.

Wish me luck!

K

Refocusing

So I need to make a confession….I’ve not been going too well in my discovery of health. I keep giving in to temptation, not keeping up my water and instead drinking more coffee, have had a huge sugar craving a lot of the time so I’ve eaten lots of lollies (candy) and chocolate and I’ve let excuses take over rather than exercise throughout the week.

I need to refocus. This weekend I’ve looked my short term goals. This is what I’ve come up with:

1. Drink 2 litre of water a day – it will keep me hydrated, reduce my dry skin and keep my headaches at bay.

2. Exercise: Tuesday and Thursday afternoons and do my 7 minute workout in the mornings – this will increase my energy, especially in the mornings, and keep up my mood and motivation.

3. Ensure I eat my fruit as a snack rather than leaving it in my lunch box and eating chocolate in its place – eating fruit will give me vitamins and minerals and I’ll get the sugary hit too.

4. Eat a handful of nuts each day. I’ve not had a problem doing this, but I have forgotten to eat – nuts have essential fats that are really good for us, plus fibre and vitamins and minerals.

5. Posture – I work at a desk and when I am not thinking of it or stressed I find I slouch. This causes my neck and back muscles to get sore, ache and by the end of the day I have a headache. Good posture is necessary for good health and important in the work that I do.

6. Sugar….ah the lovely word sugar. This is the hardest goal of all. My workplace has a lolly jar, a vender machine with chips, chocolates, lollies and cookies. Plus there is a mobile canteen with everything: coffee, cakes, chocolate, soft drink (soda), icecream, yoghurt with syrup not real fruit, meat pies/sausage rolls and the only healthy items are sandwiches/wraps. I find having all of this around me very difficult to reduce my sugar intake. If I eat one sugary item then I can’t stop. It’s the aftertaste. It keeps me and others wanting more and more. Sugar is addictive. Horrible stuff. I need to reduce.

There that you have it. It’s written down. I’m not going to try to do all of this at once as I am more likely to fail but I will try to achieve each goal as much as possible over the next few weeks.

Wish me luck….I’ll keep you posted.

K