Sunday, January 3, 2016

#karaisonthemove

Kitchen Planning
Hi there.  I'm Kara - the woman who lives in this blog.  I've been gone way too much in the last year and I feel a huge need to blog again.  My commitment to myself is to tell my story - as authentically as I can - as a memory keeping activity - but also hopefully to inspire others.

I even have a giveaway planned for later this month so check back!

Today's post is all about the thing that is consuming most of my life right now - my upcoming move.  I've moved about six times in my life - the majority of which were tied to college - so I'm not a huge moving expert.  That said, I am pretty organized and I'm trying to kid myself into thinking I've got this move pretty well under control.  So, I'm going to share a few tips that have worked for me.

1. Ask for help!

I am so lucky to have an incredible support system - from my best friend, to my family, to a great church family, to work friends - I've got a great #squad.  To say that I couldn't have gotten packed and as ready as I am without my best friend Gayle would be an absolute understatement.  She's been a huge help every weekend since I sold my house - and just an emotional support all along (I may or may not have broken down in tears randomly a few hundred times during this process).  My family has been amazing.  Everyone knows how awful moving is and most people will help out in some way if asked - so ask for help.

2. Put a day between when you take possession and when you move.

My current house was "move in ready".  I moved in a few hours after I took possession.  That was a HUGE mistake.  I didn't get to do a really thorough cleaning of the house.  My new house is what I am classifying as a "move in ready fixer upper".  It must be cleaned.  I've scheduled my closing on a Friday and moving on a Saturday.  On that Friday, I've got cleaning and some light repairs being done along with installation of cable and security systems and delivery of a couple of new appliances.

3. Measure your new place and "test" your furniture.

This worked extremely well for me before I moved into my current house - so I decided to do it again.  Gayle and I went into my new house and took measurements of each room.  Then, we measured my existing furniture.  I made a graph paper diagram of the new house and little cut outs of the furniture.  Then I could move around the furniture 100's of times by literally only lifting a finger.
Make a paper plan of your new house and cut out little pieces of your furniture to move around.

Since I am moving into a smaller place I knew some things wouldn't fit in my new house.  This helped me realize just how much of my current furniture won't fit in my new place. I'm still probably moving one or two pieces that ultimately won't make the final cut - but making a paper space plann allowed me to a) tell the people helping with move day exactly where the furniture should go in the new place and b) give away/sell a LOT of pieces before I actually move.

I also know that for me to feel "settled" when I wake up in my new place on the first morning my kitchen needs to be set up - so I've asked my nieces to set up my kitchen for me on moving day.  For that, I made the plan pictured in the photo that opened this post. It's a simple line sketch that shows all the cabinets and drawers in my new kitchen and what goes in them.

4. Purge rigorously

For the last year or so, I've worked very hard to keep my home in order.  The items on this list from Gretchen Rubin are a lot of the tips I've used.  I read The Life-Changing Magic of Tidying Up: The Japanese Art of Decluttering and Organizing just as I put my house on the market to sell.  I am a classic overbuyer and I doubt I'm cured, but I have gotten rid of A LOT using the "does it spark joy" mantra.  I'm guessing I will get rid of even more on the other end of the move.

5. Figure out how to get rid of all the things you purged

I feel like I've gotten rid of a lot. That said, very little has gone in the trash.  I did three things with this move that have been really effective for me.

  • Set up a "give away" group.  
I created a Facebook event for my move and added my family and closest friends to it - people I asked to help me with the move.  I set it up long before I had moving day set in stone.  As I purged, I posted photos of items in the event.  Anyone who wanted something just posted a note and then we arranged transfer.
For one item - my piano - I went wider to Facebook proper.  The piano was literally snatched up in 5 minutes!  Two pictures and a post and I got rid of a piano! 

  • Try a local consignment store.
 I am very lucky to have a fabulous consignment store just a few miles from my house.  I've used them for a few items that I thought I could get a little money from.  Helping a local small business and getting a little cash in my pocket is a great thing.  There are consignment stores for both household goods and clothing. I've had better luck with the household goods but I've also consigned a few clothes.

  •  Identify local charities and donation centers.
A lot of what I'm getting rid of has just gone to donation.  In the end, it's faster than any other method of getting rid of things.  I've spread the donations I've made around between:

  • Goodwill - clothing and housewares
  • Teacher's Treasure (a local teacher shopping depot) - art, craft, and office supplies
  • Habitat ReStore - larger furniture (they pick up!!!)
  • The Library - books and DVDs 
While I haven't used it, other groups like Freecycle allow you to post items you're giving away and others can speak up for them and come and get them for free.  There is also always CraigsList for selling items. 




My final tip is to commemorate both the process and the day.  From putting the house on the market to moving day will be about three months.  There have been huge ups and downs in that whole process.  I've commemorated that process in my journal as well as using my Facebook group and finally through a hashtag - #karaisonthemove - on socialmedia.  I've invited my family and friends helping with moving day to use the hashtag too.

I can't wait to share all the upgrades and updates that are going to happen in my new home here on the blog.  I hope you'll enjoy the journey with me.

Tuesday, September 1, 2015

It Is Well With My Soul


I've missed writing here. I desperately want to write.

I had a plan for what I was going to write first. This wasn't it.  Yet this feels right.

So much has changed since I was regularly writing last.  Much of it wonderful...a little of it bad.



"The Fort" is now a regular part of my life - although one that will likely take a bit of a hiatus when the weather turns cold.  As I was walking tonight...thinking...clearing my head of all the stuff that gets shoved in there during the day and making room for all of the creativity, I kept coming back to the words from the hymn - It Is Well With My Soul.  In all honesty, while I was walking, that was all I could remember.  I had to look up the lyrics when I got home.


The title though has come to be how I've been thinking of my word for this year - Authentic.  To be authentic is to do things that are well with my soul.  It doesn't need a "faith" context when I think of it that way - it's a statement that for me seems easy to agree with - regardless of religion.  I happen to be fine with it in a Christian context.  If I'm acting in a way that is authentic I'm acting in a way that my soul can live with - it is well with my soul.


And, so I plan to return to this space.  Because this is a space where I am me and I can be well with my soul.  You won't find only posts of pictures - and weird ideas as tonight's may seem to you...I even have a little blog calendar and everything.  We'll see how it goes.  But, it's good to be back here - and I certainly hope it lasts.

Tuesday, April 7, 2015

On beginning


I'm starting a new project - it's call #The100DaysProject.  You can read more about it here.

My friend Beth turned me onto it. Thanks Beth!

As soon as I saw it, I knew I wanted my project to involve quotes.  I pretty quickly settled on using a title I used for a Postcard Swap a while back - #100DaysOfWordsOfInspiration.  You can check it out in my Instagram Feed.

All that was settled in my mind about three weeks ago.  As I thought about how to begin I started to look up quotes.  I can lose myself for hours reading quotes, cruising quote boards on Pinterest, and reading a good book looking for little nuggets of wisdom.  I quickly realized that where I would need inspiration in the messy middle of this project was on the art and display of the quote - not on finding the quotes.  So, I actually started writing down a list of all the different creative ways that I could showcase a quote.  That's the part I'll struggle with later on - when the newness wears off and the project loses its excitement for me.  Any effort of 100 days - any effort at all that's more than a simple little task can turn tedious quickly.

Starting with the hard part is a tactic I'm using a lot lately - get the most important things - the hardest things - the things I'm dreading the most done first.  I write that now, realizing today that's not even remotely what happened.  I ended up working on something I personally find quite easy today - not on the thing I planned to do which is the hard stuff.

As the quote says..."Keeping together is progress..."  I am a continuous work in progress.

Do you have a quote you'd like me to showcase during this project?  If so - leave it in the comments.  Feel free to leave more than one.

Sunday, April 5, 2015

Easter Weekend

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I had a wonderful, albeit busy, Easter weekend - although busy (maybe even crazy) pretty accurately describes the last month.  I've been missing in action from the blog far too much and have such an intense need to write at the present time - hopefully this is the first in a string of posts, but I make no promises.


I arrived at mom and dad's house on Friday evening with a lot on my mind - but the thing that mattered most right off the bat was seeing this sweet girl.  The entire saga with her foot has been a seven month long journey that I hope for both of our sakes is coming to a close now - and that entire journey really needs its own post.  The short version is she's doing really well right now and might even get her stitches out tomorrow!  My parents have had her for two weeks (while I've been traveling) and my dad has done multiple vet trips for me to our vet in Richmond - thank you so much dad!


I sent dad a text on Friday afternoon that I'd want to get in a walk that evening if it wasn't raining - about 2 miles - and he should come with me or just suggest a route.  We had dinner with mom as soon as I arrived on Friday and then headed out with Sammy, dad's dog, for that walk - which ended up being about 2.5 miles.  Mom and dad's place is technically in the city, but within that 2.5 mile walk we were standing at the edge of a field enjoying a pretty glorious sunset.


Saturday was for errands.  Mom and I hit the grocery and then met up with Dad for lunch at Frisch's - for the express purpose of picking up a Red's baseball schedule - bring on opening day!  We all ran a few more errands and then dad and I got in another walk.  I made dinner and Susie stopped in for a visit.  Over the course of the afternoon I think there was a nap and then there was some prep for Easter lunch - dad grilled meat, while Susie, mom and I prepped some other stuff.  I can honestly say of all the family dinners we've done this one was, from my perspective, about the simplest I've done in a while which was good considering how busy these last few weeks have been.  Family is always there to fill in all the needed pieces!


Mom, Dad, and I started off this morning at their church.  The choir sounded wonderful and the bells were nice.  It's also always nice seeing my former church family - but I desperately missed my church in Indy.

After church, it was time for family time.  We had 19 people in for lunch - a pretty normal-sized family dinner for us - that often also includes friends and families of in-laws as today's lunch did. Without a doubt, the star of the show was Lucas, although Miss Lauren was a close second.  Lots of favorite memories from today...so I'm just going to capture a few...


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Mom asked to hold Lauren almost as soon as Amanda and Steve came in.  As soon as Amanda put Lauren in her hands, there were at least five different cameras shooting pictures - we're all making a huge effort to get pics of mom and the kids together now.



Even with 18 people there we were missing quite a few folks including Lucas's cousin "auntie" Ashley - so we shot a quick video for her.  His ad lib in the last second - priceless!  Grabbed a few other videos and lots of pictures to share with family who couldn't be there today which helped connect us all together.

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Lucas LOVED picking up Easter eggs - and even got pretty good at taking them and their contents (after opening them and dumping their contents into the grass) - back to Aunt Susie and placing them in the basket - which she was holding for him.  He told us what color each one was, and opened each and told us what was in them.  They included, in Lucas speak, monies (quarters and dollar bills), me-mes (M&Ms), gummies (self explanatory), and McQueen socks (Lightning McQueen socks).

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And the entire family had fun watching him. Everyone got in on calling out colors, reminding him to pick up the contents of the egg and put it in his basket, and even helping him hold all his loot when he didn't want to return it to his basket.  Good thing he's only 2 or he might realize he didn't quite get all the M&Ms or gummies back as some of those got eaten as refreshments while we watched him.

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Instagram Photo April 05, 2015 at 02:48PM

His Nana got him some McQueen bubbles so Great Aunt Susie blew bubbles for him while he and great grandpa ("Grandpa Frank" in Lucas speak) chased them around the yard.  Other people got in on the chasing too - but they were the main players. [Note: That second photo - the one with Lucas looking up at the bubbles - my fave - and I shot it with my cell phone no less!)

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You could tell it was a long, cold winter inside as this little man wanted NOTHING to do with going inside- and it was hard to blame him on such a gorgeous day.  We talked him into getting a drink under promise that I'd take him back outside.  We both got drinks and then headed back out.  Great Grandpa joined us shortly.  We took a brief break to go inside to find out where the yellow ball was (the photo that led off this post) but then back out and were probably out for about an hour in total.  I need to talk for a minute on the incredible increase in his vocabulary.  It's been six weeks since I saw him (entirely too long) and about a week since he and I video chatted (thank you Nana!).  I could tell in the video chat that both his vocabulary and his pronunciation had improved - today really showcased that.  I had no trouble understanding at least 80% and likely 90% of what he said - a number I'd say was around 60% just six weeks ago.  His naming of objects and his descriptions of both objects and events are much more detailed.  He's also naming people more specifically and more directly than ever before - I'm now solidly Aunt Nicki and Grandpa Frank is clear and perfectly understandable. He's also mimicking EVERYTHING...so we all have to now be very careful what we say.


Donna and Amanda also thought to set up a four generations shot which I was glad someone thought to do - thanks for sharing your pic Donna!  Note to everyone in the family who reads this...we're due for another full family photo at our next gathering so come prepared!

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I was personally a little disappointed in the pictures I got today.  I need to continue to work on shooting action shots - lots of blur, weird eye and hand positions, bad shadows, etc.  I need to just shoot more regularly (note to self).  The shot above though was another favorite - thanks to Steve for tossing Lucas up in the air several more times so I could get the shot as I didn't have the camera on the first time he did it!  But, with such a fun little boy and sweet beautiful little girl to serve as the stars of our show - there are still plenty of wonderful pictures - and even more amazing memories to go around.

Happy Easter to everyone!

Monday, March 9, 2015

Miss Lauren Olivia


I am three weeks late in getting this post up.  How in the world is this beautiful little angel already three weeks old?  Please meet my beautiful and amazing great niece - Lauren Olivia Stout.  She was born February 16 and she is absolutely perfect.

On Saturday I went over and spent a couple of hours with Lauren and her mommy (Daddy and Lucas were out having some fun times together).  This is my third visit with Miss Lauren - and every one has been precious.  I sat and held her while she slept and Amanda and I visited.  She fussed a little bit a couple of times but not too much.  She just barely fits into the afghan I made her as she's really starting to grow now.  She did open her eyes for a few minutes at the end of the visit - I can already tell she's taking all of her world in and trying to figure it out.

Lucas is doing great as a big brother.  I can't wait to see him in a few months when she's alert and looking around and learning how to laugh - he's going to love making her laugh because he loves making all of us laugh.

And watching Amanda and Steve be new parents again is another joy.  Those two just make my heart so happy.

Miss Lauren - you are so loved and I'm so glad you're in our lives.  

Saturday, December 27, 2014

Merry Christmas!

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I'm sitting here at the computer today working through a software upgrade for work.  If you've never done a major software upgrade it's a lot of sitting and waiting and then spending five minutes testing something until you find the next thing that didn't work like it was supposed to and you then wait until that's fixed and start the cycle all over again.  Boring drudgery is what we call that.  Luckily, I'm not the poor person who has to fix all the stuff that's not quite working as anticipated so I'm getting to clean my desk, now I'm working on cleaning up my office area and I got my Christmas pictures processed! So, I'm sharing them with all of you.

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Let's start with the story of these first two pictures - which won't be nearly as funny as it was to me in real life.  Dinner was over so we all headed to the living room for Lucas to unwrap his gifts and everyone else to get their gift cards (we're not much of a present family unless you are under about the age of six.)  He opened his gifts - which I'll show you in a second and then his Nana and I wanted to get a picture of him in front of the tree.  We told him to stand by the tree and he backed his little tush right up and just posed bigger than life...big cheesy cheese and all.  The first photo was from the first time he did it - at which point I laughed so hard because this boy is just so cute - that I wasn't sure when I looked at the picture if I actually got a good shot so we had him do it again - which he did.  I tried not to shake too hard while I laughed and snapped and ended up getting a good shot from each round!  I love that he enjoys making us laugh.


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This is the other photo I'm most excited about - I've been trying to get a good picture of Lucas with his Great Grandma for - well nearly two years now.  Mom doesn't love having her picture taken and since Great Grandma is typically sitting still and Lucas is usually moving, getting the two in the same frame can be a challenge.  But, luckily, I went in the living room and grabbed a spot in the corner right after dinner.  As everyone came in mom took Lucas's hand to walk over to the Christmas tree and show him the Snoopy motorcycle toy that was in the tree for him.  I clicked off about 10 frames and got three good shots.  I'll keep trying for some great ones but happy to have at least a few with them in the same frame!


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Lucas got snatched up by Auntie Ashley and snuggled for about 10 seconds before he was back off and running again.  Love the big smiles on all their faces. Ash and Matt got him a set of bib overalls which I can't wait to see him in.  

Lucas did great opening everything - from gift bags to presents.  I got him the toys to go with his train mat.  Great Grandma and Great Grandpa hit the kid pleasing jackpot though because they got him a tractor which definitely got the most love and attention.


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Lucas has definitely mastered present unwrapping.  He had no hesitation with it at all.  He even helped me open my gift - a Lynn and Friends CD featuring Mrs. J! (Thanks for grabbing the shot Donna!)

As all the present unwrapping was winding up and everyone else went back to the kitchen to clean up dinner, Lucas and I grabbed a few more minutes to get some shots of him just being a silly almost two year old.  


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Our whole Christmas Day was a wonderful day of family and friends so even though I didn't catch pictures of more than these few minutes, the whole day was joyful and a great opportunity to just relax and spend time together. I certainly hope you also had a Merry Christmas!

Tuesday, December 9, 2014

FitBit Charge HR - 24 Hour Review


Hi everybody!  I got my new FitBit Charge HR yesterday morning and couldn't wait to get it out of the box and see how it looked and how it worked.  I thought I'd share my first impressions with you.

So, those of you that know me, know that I'm a gadget girl.  These last few months I've also been working super hard at healthy eating and getting plenty of exercise. One of the things I've realized I wanted was a heart rate monitor.  I've had a Fitbit Flex ever since they came out after killing not one, but two Fitbit One's with water/moisture damage.  I actually liked the One a little better than the Flex since the One recorded stairs climbed and in my opinion did a little better job tracking sleep.  That said, my Flex has been a durable power horse and using it has helped me hit my goal of 10,000 steps many days for the past couple of months.  However, when Fitbit announced they were adding a line of wearables that included Heart Rate monitoring I knew that would be my Christmas present to myself.

Officially, the Charge HR isn't available yet but I get on email on Sunday inviting me to order one early and get it really quickly.  Of course - I took them up on the offer and after a little weather induced delay for FedEx, the Charge HR arrived yesterday morning.  It came packaged as you see above and the "bit" itself is on a little plastic stand.


The first difference I noticed after taking it out of the box was the change in the format on the wristband.  The flex has two little plastic prongs that you push into holes on the band.  I always thought that looked a little stupid, but it was comfortable and the band didn't flop around.  The Charge HR has a much more traditional watch band style.  I have some more thoughts on the band and on sizing I'll share below.


Also in the box is the charging cable and the USB wireless sync gizmo (yes - that's the technical term) that you put in your computer to let it sync.


The charging cable is actually one of the things I am most excited about.  If the Charge is like my Flex, it will need to charge for a couple of hours once a week.  The way the Flex (my current fits in the charger has never been tight in any way and a couple of times I've put it on the charger before going to bed and come out the next morning to a dead Fitbit (womp, womp).  The Charge HR has a click in charger that actually locks tightly into the back of the Fitbit so - way to go Fitbit on fixing that design issue!

The charging cable plugs into that area with the two little dots close together on the back of the wristband.


Just like this. (I know - riveting product review - right!)


And you can see a little read out on the front showing you that it's charging!  Honestly - this is the very best part for me because charging my Flex has become far more stressful than recharging the battery on a device should be - hence my excitement.


If you have a Fitbit account already you have to set up this Fitbit with your account - or if you don't have a Fitbit yet you create your account.  It's simple and easy, but there was a note in the Fitbit Charge HR setup that I wish I would have known about before I ordered - and that's where you're supposed to wear the Fitbit - which is actually about a finger width back from your wrist bone (see the photo below for the diagram that comes up on the screen during setup).


My wrist is right at 6" at the wrist bone - which is in the sweet spot that is covered by both the small size band and the large size band.  If I'd known about where it was supposed to be worn (which is a little wider on me), I might have opted for the larger band.  That said, I've got more weight to lose so hopefully this will just get more comfortable and it's not uncomfortable to wear now - there just isn't much slack in it.

Okay, so we unpacked it, gave it a little go juice, set it up with our Fitbit account - now we get to use it.  I shot a quick little video to show you how it works - it's my first ever video product review.  I'll put some text below to tell you what the different features are in case you can't listen to the video at work and - of course - I'll give a little more detail about some of them.



There is just one little button on the side that you use to activate and toggle through the different views.  In order, they are:
  • Clock
  • Steps walked
  • Heart rate
  • Distance traveled
  • Calories burned
  • Stairs climbed
The Heart Rate takes about a half second to register each time that you activate it.  Once during my workout this morning (I'll talk about workout mode below) it actually didn't show my heart rate so I'll have to see if that trend continues.

The Fitbit family has always tracked sleep, although it's not one of those things I tend to stress about tracking too much.  That said, I wondered how this one would track that since I didn't know how to "activate" sleep mode - and it appears - you don't have to.  I woke up this morning to an IFTTT alert on my phone that it had logged three and a half hours of sleep! (Darn you NCIS:LA for keeping me up so late - but you were an excellent episode!)

Sleep also gets recorded in the app (or on the web site) just like normal.  This was my sleep graph from last night.

One last note on sleep - while I was sitting here writing this - my Fitbit was just laying on my desk (from post video filming) and it logged that time as sleep - so there are some bugs in that feature.  I'm guessing it's going to look like I take a nap every day about this time since I'll remove the Fitbit to shower.  So...perhaps more work to do there for their designers and engineers.

Personally, I'm so excited to have stairs climbed back again!  Seriously - I'm shooting for 20 flights today!  I heard today (at Jazzercise this morning since that's the only place I've been so early today) that you burn 15 calories every time you walk up a flight of stairs. Hi - my name is Kara - I will climb stairs for chocolate!  I didn't realize just how much I missed having that feature until I got it back.

Let's talk about workout mode for a few minutes which is also quite awesome - and made me actually notice all the info hidden about exercise in the app.  I used it this morning in my Jazzercise class.  To activate workout mode on the Charge HR, just hold in the little button for three seconds until a little clock appears.  When you finish your workout just hold it in again for three seconds until the little finish line flag appears.  During the workout you only have to click once to get elapsed time and a second time to get Heart Rate.  I got really comfortable just double clicking the little button this morning to go right to heart rate.

At the end of the workout  I checked the Exercise area of the app.  Here's what you get.


The first screen is the calendar screen showing all your workouts.  You can see I've been recording my classes using the default Jazzercise in MyFitnessPal but today's workout recorded automatically from the Charge HR! (And never mind what happened to my workouts during Thanksgiving week - ugh!  I did work out last Friday though so I'll have to figure out why that's not appearing.

Notice the five little dots under the calendar - that means there are more screens so a quick swipe to the left gives you workout duration by day.



The next swipe over gives you distance by day - obviously doing Jazzercise I wasn't logging this and don't know that this one is particularly useful for me.  


This is a good place to point out the little stop watch icon in the upper right corner.  I'll be honest - I had never clicked over to the Exercise graphs before today so I don't know if this has always been there and I just didn't realize it or if the app has updated recently since they've come out with these new devices.  Anyway, in the exercise graphs there is another "hidden" feature of the app.  Tapping the stopwatch icon takes you into a route tracker!  Here's a quick screen grab of that. Notice that you can choose between run, walk, or hike.  There are also audio cues.  I've used RunKeeper before when I'm doing a 5K but may have to try this one out the next time to see how it works.

Going back to our exercise screens - because we've got two more (!!!) - and they saved the best for last (okay - really for fourth because this one is the one I'm most excited about).  This one shows you exercise by Heart Rate Zone and total minutes in each zone by day.  I've not dug into all the best rates for this and what's good and what's great, etc - but I know this is super useful and I'm excited to see this.  I also apparently need to push myself a little harder and get my heart rate into that peak zone a bit.



The last screen is calories burned by day.  I'll be interested to see what this pattern looks like after a consistent month of classes because I know the days I think I work harder in class (and the instructors that push you harder) but it will be interesting to see if that's really true.




So, there you have it - the Fitbit Charge HR!  There are also use and care tips that you get a link to when you do the set up. I did switch it to my other arm to sleep last night and will probably keep doing that.  It is quite an investment so do make sure you read these and take good care of your device if you choose to buy one.

There is one other feature which I didn't demo or grab a picture of but I have tested it once and it does work - and in fact all three of the new Fitbits - the Charge, the Charge HR (the one I got) and the Surge have this feature - and that's caller ID if you sync it with your phone.  I wasn't sure I cared about this feature but my phone is always on either vibrate or silent and if it's in my bag when I'm shopping or running errands this may come in handy as the wristband vibrates and displays the name of the caller.  I'll put this one in the heated seats category.  I didn't think I needed it until I got it - now that I have it I'll probably never be able to go back. Darn you Fitbit!

The Charge HR's aren't available to everyone yet but you can sign up on Fitbit's web site to get notified when they are available.  They have the Charge available now as well as the Flex, One, and Zip.  If you want Heart Rate monitoring though - wait for the Charge HR.

One last note - I'm doing Cathy Zielske's awesome class Move More, Eat Well Jumpstart over at Big Picture Classes again in January. This is my fourth time through one of Cathy's Move More, Eat Well classes and I can honestly tell you that for me - that has been the secret sauce to finally getting my act together with health and fitness (well that and accountability partners).  I have a post planned for later this month to talk about my progress, but I am amazed at how deflated people are when they ask me what I'm doing to get fit and I say moving more and eating well - that is the magic bullet - there isn't a pill or something else that will do it - and I think that depresses people.  Anyway...that's for another post...back to Cathy's class.  The class mixes a bit of scrapbooking with a huge dose of inspiration and encouragement from Cathy - and honestly - I've never completed the album projects but I always get more out of this class than any other I've taken at BPC so I highly recommend it.  There is an awesome private Facebook group as well that's already providing loads of encouragement to get through the holidays without giving up all these good habits.  

Do you use a Fitness tracker?  Which one?  Share in the comments what you think about these cool little gadgets - is it overkill or access to good data that helps you get even healthier?

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