Monica Wants It: A Lifestyle Blog

Tuesday, January 20, 2015

Week 2-3: Monica Wants Fit Check-In

Ugh. 2015 is KICKING MY BUTT.

In 2015, so far this is what’s happened:

  • We had to have our septic tank pumped again at the cost of $400 (second time in <6 months)
  • Pee Wee had a poop accident and the Roomba deployed. Crappy situation- literally.
  • The back-up camera in our vehicle went out, and then started working again (for now)
  • Got really bad news at work
  • We’ve had only 5 days of sunshine
  • I haven’t exercised since January 4
  • I have a terrible cold right now

And that’s not even the worst part. It is with a super heavy heart that I tell you all that my mom’s dog Elmo passed away last Monday. That’s why I didn’t post—it just felt wrong. My mom spent the 3-day weekend here with us in Beeville, and she’s hanging in there, but it’s always such a heartbreaking feeling to lose a pet. He was truly the center of her universe and had been with her through so much. I am happy he’s no longer suffering and going through seizures. I love you forever Elmo.

Screen Shot 2015-01-20 at 10.38.43 AM

My weight loss report is bleak. During week 2, I lost 1.4. Then during week 3, I gained 1.6.


I meticulously analyzed my calorie consumption from weeks 2 and 3. Week 3 I ate 400 more calories.

Week 2 I ate burgers, beer, and cookies galore while staying under my calories. Week 3 I ate salads, lots of lean protein, and no beer.

What gives? I know this is all just part of the game, and that sometimes this stuff can’t be explained. The last 3-days have been a free for all, so today I am getting back on track…while I’m super sick. I can’t taste much of anything, so perhaps my weekend indulgences will even out.

My challenge is that work is, well work, and I just can’t get the gusto to exercise after a mentally exhausting day. I think I’m going to just try walking a mile a day using my Leslie Sansone DVD. I highly recommend this DVD for those of you who are new to exercising or have a Fitbit and want to get some extra steps in. Each mile I walk earns me around 2K steps on my Fitbit Zip.

My water intake is also sporadic—I have to be very mindful in order to drink enough water. It doesn’t come naturally to me at all whatsoever. The #StopDropandChug hashtag on Instagram helps keep me motivated though. Water is just so boring. I love adding lemons to jazz it up, but I won’t lie…I’m such a Diet Pepsi and Diet Dr. Pepper lover. Oh it’s delicious and awful for me.

Enough of my rambling. With my loss and gain, I’m at a net loss of 4 pounds. My goal is to lose 6 pounds a month, and January isn’t over yet, so I’m going to stay positive and keep on moving forward towards my goal. So happy I didn’t join a DietBet after all. That would have been more stress that I totally don’t need.

This weekend looks like it’ll finally bring sunshine and decent weather so we can finish some of our home projects. Sorry for the lack of DIY lately, but life happens.

What’s happening with all of you? I’ll be back on Thursday with new details about our foyer update!

Monday, January 5, 2015

Week 1: Monica Wants Fit Check-In

Welcome to week 1 of Monica Wants Fit where I chronicle my journey to fit and healthy every Monday. The good, the bad, the ugly…and the occasional donut.

I feel like I’ve been catfishing you all. All my lovely headshot photos on social media are from 2009, which is consequently the last time I felt I looked good in a photo. (With the exception of a cute selfie or 2 from my Vegas trip in December 2013):


^^ Me 20 pounds ago!

I didn’t write about weight loss in 2014 for a good reason—there wasn’t any!

Here’s a rundown of 2014 in the life of Monica’s weight loss journey:

  • I gained about 24 pounds, putting me at my heaviest weight ever and up over 100 pounds since my wedding day in May 2009.
  • I flew 3 times and felt uncomfortable every. single. time.
  • I was/am afraid to go on vacation to a theme park because I’m afraid I won’t fit into the rides.
  • I went up a pant/dress size.
  • I was exhausted just literally standing on my feet for a few hours at a work event to the point of tears.
  • I had zero energy, felt introverted, depressed, angry, bitter.
  • I have INSANE new stretch marks on my upper arms, around my armpit area, and the sides of my stomach on top of all the OLD stretch marks. I will likely never be able to wear sleeveless tops or a bikini. This hurts my heart.
  • I couldn’t squat down without awful knee pain.
  • I drank almost no water daily.
  • I ate out 3-5 times a week, if not more.
  • I drank alcohol almost daily.
  • I vehemently avoided taking photos, giving presentations, shopping, and looking at myself in the mirror.

I figured I’d be real with you all. That up there is a list that would land me an early death.

I’ve been spending a lot of time on Instagram lately and have come across some of the most inspirational before and after weight loss accounts, as well as the accounts of other people in the midst of their journey. That’s when a light bulb went off for me—I don’t have to watch other people accomplish things…I can do it, too. I’ve started and stopped this journey a hundred times before, but I just feel like this might be the time it sticks. I’ve reached a point where I have to do something. It’s bad when you start googling to learn about weight loss surgery. I do not judge anyone who has had weight loss surgery, but I don’t want that for me.

When I’ve done this before, I go CRAZY hardcore for about a month, lose steam, quit. This time, I’m not putting myself on a super low cal diet, I’m not forbidding anything (although I am cutting down on bread/processed sugar a lot), and I’m aiming to workout 5 days a week for at least 40 minutes. My workouts are 3 days of lifting heavy + 2 days of cardio. I’m tracking everything on My Fitness Pal (friend me by clicking here) and chronicling my journey/DIY adventures over on Instagram.

Week 1 for me ended on Friday, January 2, and I lost 4.2 pounds! Yay! I know that sort of weight loss won’t happen each week since it’s a lot of water weight, but I’ll take it for now. My weigh-ins are every Friday morning. I’m also trying to mentally tell myself that the scale isn’t THAT important, so I’ll take measurements at the first of every month.

My challenges this week:

  • Going back to work after 18 days off.
  • Drinking enough water. I’ll do great one day and then slack the next. Consistency is key!
  • Hitting my macros—my carbs are high, so I need to add in more lean protein.

If you have any tips or suggestions or questions, please leave them in the comments section. And if you believe in prayer or good juju, please pray that I have the strength to finish this journey for once and for all.

Sunday, January 4, 2015

The Future of Monica Wants It

Tomorrow is my first day back at work after 18 GLORIOUS days off. Somehow I am always naive and think I’ll be able to knock out like 10 DIY projects in between holiday family gatherings and travel… and then mother nature comes into play and grants us 3 days of sunshine and 15 days of dreary cold.

I took a lot of time to reflect on my blog over the break and thought about what I want it to be. I’ve thought about this on and off for months, and then I get on Pinterest or Instagram and I immediately feel less than. I don’t have as large a following as the mega bloggers in the DIY/home decor niche, but I have a full time 40+ hour a week job. I feel like in blog land there are groups of friends that support and promote one another’s blogs, but I kind of just feel alone. I don’t have a posse, I don’t really have a set group of blogging friends I can go to for help on the regular other than Facebook blog groups. I get jealous about opportunities I don’t get, I feel insecure, and I second guess myself about my blogging.

Is this all worth it? Is anyone reading? Will anyone care if I stop?

I’ve been at this for SIX years in April, and I just don’t feel I’ve gotten anywhere because I don’t give this blog my all. I LOVE Monica Wants It, and I deeply wish for this to be my career and livelihood. I don’t know or think that’s realistic right this second, but I would love to build my own brand. I have ideas, and I don’t know how to make it happen. I sort of had my “own” brand when I had my Etsy store from 2008-2012, and I shut it down when I moved into my PR job. I gave up my dream to work on someone else’s.

But through all this back and forth in my mind, I’ve learned ONE thing that has made a profound difference.

Comparison is the thief of joy.

The more and more I compare myself to other bloggers, the more bitter I become. When I compare myself to myself, I get better. I can see where my photography has improved, I can see that people DO enjoy and use my tutorials, and I love it even more than when I first started.

So, that’s my focus. A better blog that is hopefully better for all my readers.

2014 was hard. I let my career dominate, and I mean that quite literally, my life. I used it as an excuse for everything from a bad mood, to the cause of my weight gain, to a reason to drink margaritas twice a week. I have to do my job well in order to keep it, but I want to make more time for me.

This year, you can expect to see DIY inspiration posts about what inspires me in my home, tutorials/plans, and chronicles about my weight loss journey and life. I kind of stopped those because I was in a dark place, but now that I’ve made it to the other side, I am ready to let people in again.

And that also means in real life. Truth be told, I am in the closet about being a blogger. If anyone asks me at work, I quickly divert attention: “Look, a squirrel!” I’ve worked hard on over 500 posts on this blog, so I’m going to come out of the closet and let my blogger flag shine. People may think it’s dumb, but in the words of my fave singer of the moment, “Haters gonna hate!”

Be back tomorrow with a week 1 weight loss update!

Thanks for sticking with me…I love ya’ll.

Monday, December 22, 2014

Holiday Entertaining: #SauzaSparkling

Anyone else in full on panic mode? This year I totally procrastinated on gift buying and grocery shopping, so I feel stressed. I am reminding myself that the holidays are about fun, family, friends, and tasty sparkling drinks. I am a total sparkling cocktails, wine, booze kind of gal. Sparkle, sparkle, sparkle! That’s why I was so stoked when Sauza sent me some goodies to add to my bar cart this holiday season.

Today I’m sharing a little bit about my go to drinks for holiday entertaining. A classic margarita is always good, but a good margarita is only as good as the tequila used to make it. I’ve been using Sauza for years and years. It’s readily found in most liquor stores, it’s affordable, and it’s amazing in a margarita.

My go-to margarita recipe is below—it’s inspired by the BEST margaritas I’ve ever had. My good friend’s hubby makes out of this world margaritas, and his secret is fresh, quality ingredients. It may seem a little overboard to fresh squeeze a ton of limes and make simple syrup, but it is so worth it. Make a large pitcher by multiplying the ingredients by the number of desired servings and enjoy! If you want other margarita recipes, Sauza has you covered with almost any flavor profile you can think of.

The Best Classic Margarita:

  • .5 oz Grand Marnier
  • 1.5 oz Sauza 100% Blue Agave 
  • .75 oz Fresh lime juice (don’t skimp on this part)
  • .5 oz Simple syrup (one part sugar, one part water)
  • Mix in a cocktail shaker and pour over ice. Garnish with salt, if desired.

    Sauza Sparkling Margaritas review and entertaining ideas over at

    If being a bartender is not your idea of a fun time, then I would recommend ditching the champagne and picking up some Sauza Sparkling Margaritas at your local liquor store. These take all the hard work out of stocking up on 6 different ingredients to make 1 cocktail. I was sent the mango peach flavor (which is my favorite and I had tried before) and the watermelon flavor which is super refreshing, and new to me. The other two flavors are classic margarita (just add some salt and enjoy!) and wild berry. These are under $10/bottle, and I like to serve them in champagne glasses. I am obsessed with these gorgeous flutes that Sauza included in my package:

    Sauza Sparkling Margaritas review and entertaining ideas over at

    So, since you’re saving so much time by NOT having to hand craft cocktails, some cute touches you can afford to do are to get a square cocktail napkin, fold it in half on the diagonal and insert into the flute. I also tossed in some chocolates. Arrange them on a tray, and guests can easily pick up a glass, serve themselves, and have a good time (responsibly, of course!)

    Holiday entertaining doesn’t have to be intimidating and it definitely doesn’t have to be expensive. Pick some of these up for Christmas game night with cocktails, New Year’s Eve parties, or a girls night in. Just make sure to enjoy responsibly, as always.

    Sauza Sparkling Margaritas review and entertaining ideas over at

    The kind folks over at Sauza also included some other things in my gift pack that meant the world to me and will help me “sweep” away all the negative juju from 2014. You’ll see what I mean soon-- I’ll be back in a few days with my 2015 blogging resolutions…I think I’m ready to really amp this up a bit. I hope you’ll stick around with me. xoxo!

    What are your favorite holiday cocktails?

    Disclosure: I was provided with samples for this blog post, but was not otherwise compensated for this post. All ideas and opinions are my own.

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