Monthly Reviews & Blog Updates

2021 Turned Out Better Than Anticipated + Goals For My Best Year Yet! ๐Ÿฅณ

Ho-Ho-Ho Sexy wordpressers! How are you this mornin’? ๐Ÿ™‚

Right now I’m finishing my morning cuppa & I feel like sharing – I am already drafting my goals for 2022. I don’t know, the spirit’s in the air and all that jazz. You too? Tell me about it in the comments section!

Anyways, it is that time of the year (I usually do a huge purge of un-necessary physical stuff too but aside from that …) when goal-setting is appropriate.

But first, and since I went AWOL for so long, I would like to share the highlights of my 2021 especially since, I wasn’t expecting anything to come out of 2021 to begin with.

No. 1. I went plant based.

And I think I know enough to distinguish between the terms now, I could say I’m vegan but vegans do it for the environment. I’m doing it for my health primarily because … let’s just say there’s so much that’s considered “normal” out there for women in their mid-40’s (even much earlier!), that’s just not. That wonderfully disappear when you eat plants.

I even did an experiment on my 14 year old who, earlier this year, complained of irregular periods. They came back, in beautiful succession. And her face cleared up and she stopped experiencing stomach pains & her bowel movements became glorious.

But eventually I got tired of nagging. And the indomitable duo of Pizza Hut’s super mega cheesy soupy thingy with globs of pasta & meat (a.k.a. lasagne) & twice-stuffed-crust pizza ultimately won. And I had to return to wielding my power silently in the kitchen.

But I lost 16 pounds. Uh-huh! No, not from the nagging, silly! From eating plants only! So yes, jingle those bells! ๐Ÿ˜†๐Ÿฅณ ๐Ÿฅณ 

What else? Ah!

No. 2. Yoga.

Yoga never appealed to me before. It looked boring. Too uneventful. Passing gas inadvertently. Awkward! ๐Ÿ™„

But the toddler and I were at each other’s throats. I needed an excuse to get out of the house and into the presence of other adults. I could only do it once a week on Saturdays, and there’s Covid so no group classes … Ahh well, one-on-one yoga classes then. I was desperate!

And now I’m hooked ๐Ÿ˜Œ I don’t want to do any other type of exercise. What for? Yoga has everything I need and want – flexibility, mobility, balance, power, challenge. Ok maybe I’ll do a 30 minute Leslie Sansone here and there, but I now consider myself a yogi and look forward to prancing about in colorful & sexy yoga gear. (As opposed to, you know, those ratty tshirts & leggings because “this is just to get me out of the house anyways”).

Also, and I don’t know if this is a win but I think it’s worth mentioning ~

I stopped crocheting/knitting. I just burned out like that! I wish it happened before I invested in a closet-full of yarn because now I just don’t know what to do with it. I invested much more in yarn & knitting/crocheting paraphernalia in the past 2 years than in everything else combined, including clothes. And maybe that’s because of Covid too but, all that buying was becoming an addiction & it was getting out of hand. I think it’s also because I went on IG. A show-and-tell platform always makes life “more interesting” and the buying somehow felt justified. Does that even make sense?

So right now there’s this whole space that used to be occupied by crochet/knitting that’s just waiting for something new to come in (oooh, that’s such a nice way of saying it ๐Ÿ˜„).

~~~ oOo ~~~

And next year?

Well, next year has more yoga, more WFPB (whole foods, plant-based) eating, I am finally (finally!) going to learn how to use make-up, I will find a way to grow luscious hair, I will initiate parties, blog again, seek out online communities & go out more.

These things might seem mundane, minute even, to most of you but these are things I’ve just never been interested in or never had the chance to explore because of being an expat SAHM. Or just plain laziness and/or cockiness ๐Ÿ˜€

And you know what, I’m not even going to wait till next year! See you in my next post, yes? Love you too! ๐Ÿ˜Š

Blogging, Fitness & Vanities

Weekly Challenge Update!


“You don’t need a New Year to make a change.

All you need is a Monday” ๐Ÿ˜€

Hey everyone! IssanotherMonday as you might have noticed already and here on OSB&V I usually dedicate Mondays to positive changes and fitness. For April I had the hilarious idea of taking on weekly challenges and so here we are, with week 3 begging for its ration XD

But first, a quick update on the 2 weekly challenges I took on for last week:

Challenge #1:

Improve my wheel pose by investing time in practicing it, preferably on a daily basis.

The pros:

I did get to improve my wheel pose in the sense that it is much easier for me to heave myself off of the mat than ever before, as well as being able to stay longer in the pose enough to make a full mental review of my form.ย  My wrists are getting on with the program as well, perhaps sensing the solemnity of my intention ๐Ÿ˜€ And, I was able to practice for 4 days, thank you very much!

The cons:

I found out my lower body is ready and willing to cooperate, but my upper body is not – in particular, my arms and upper back.

I realized I need to invest more time in exercises for opening my back and shoulders. I did this video on some days for warming up:

And it would be a HAPPY day indeed if I can do this โค โค โค (see video below):

Can I possibly get any crazier?! XD

BTW I hope you guys aren’t expecting a before/after picture because then I’ll have to disappoint you – I’m just not there yet LOL! XD XD

Challenge #2:

Finish an online work-from-home course.

I picked this challenge for 2 reasons.

A) It must not conflict with challenge #1 and

B) to broaden my horizons instead of working off of what I already have.

The course I took is Work From Home – 5 Ways To Work From Home and is a free and introductory course on Udemy. It provides an overview ofย  5 legitimate ways (or business models) to earn income from home and walks you through the personality types suited to each business model, the key elements related to each, and ends with showing the potential income range for each.

But The Mind Does Wander

During the course however, I found myself straying several times to other sites looking for crochet patterns XD XD

That is NOT to say the course is boring! As a matter of fact, I find the instructor very affable and the course easy to follow. At some points during the course a sliver of inspiration would cross my mind that I could earn enough money from home to cover my yarn-sprees ๐Ÿ˜‡ ๐Ÿ˜‡ ๐Ÿ˜‡

And There Was This Promise

But I would immediately recall the promise I made to myself that if ever I should work again it will be for fun, something that will not come with me to my home at the end of the day, cause me to put too much salt in my Bolognese sauce, nor haunt me in my sleep.

Now for those of you who don’t know it yet, I used to have a corporate job in Marketing in my previous life. Here’s why I left. And I’ve never been happier ๐Ÿ˜€ ๐Ÿ˜€

I heard a loud clap of thunder and that was that ๐Ÿ™

What I learned:

Home is a sacred space I do not want to associate with ‘work’ just yet, or maybe ever.ย  As well, I’m still “detoxifying” – unwinding from the stresses of my previous life, having a ball rediscovering my crazy-playful side, enjoying each day emancipated from time and deadlines, immensely appreciative that my dreams are filled with colorful yarn, gracefully effortless backbends, and copious amounts of heavenly brewed coffee โค โค โค

We shall thus move on …

Challenge # 3:

Eliminate mindless snacking on unhealthy food.

Join me back next Monday for updates ๐Ÿ‘ ๐Ÿ™‚


Wrist Love For Crocheters


cat-691175_960_720I’ve been crocheting a cardigan which has significantly increased the number of ‘swirling’ motions I do with my right wrist through the copious use of treble stitches.

Add this bag to that.

Plus my quest to improve my wheel pose (which challenges my wrists, among other body parts).

And I’m feeling something just a tad bit off in my right wrist o_O

I am reminded of an amazing crochet artist whose blog I regularly visit for inspiration. She’s been out of commission for quite some time now due to wrist issues.

So my dearest fellow hookers I thought I’d make this post all about wrist/hand care exercises because most of the time, we just take for granted how important our amazing and very hardworking hands/wrists are. And they hardly ever complain! Unless perhaps when it’s too late ๐Ÿ˜ฎ ๐Ÿ˜ฎ ๐Ÿ˜ฎ

I know it’s very hard to put down those hooks and needles but we can do this! XD Here are some helpful videos, most of which can be done where we are in whatever physical state we are, fancy leggings and sexy tank tops optional:

These are under 4 mins – so no excuses! Once you know the movements you don’t even have to watch the video while doing the exercises.

This is my favorite, it’s about 15 minutes and is more extensive.

And here’s an entire series specifically for crocheters and knitters – you gotta love that! ๐Ÿ˜€ If you want to give every body part involved in crocheting/knitting a good dose of TLC then I recommend doing the entire series ๐Ÿ˜€ โค

There! How do you like your hands/wrists now? ๐Ÿ˜€


Create happy! โค โค

Blogging, Fitness & Vanities

April’s Weekly Challenge Update + Challenge #2

Howdy my shiny, happy people! โค ๐Ÿ™‚

Last week was the first week of April and I felt like shaking things up, so I gave myself the task of doing a weekly challenge for the whole month. Read about it here.

This post will be a progress update + the unveiling of the next challenge ๐Ÿ™‚ Let’s get to it!

Challenge #1: improve my wheel pose

For the record, I can’t really do a wheel pose. I can do the second one in this picture and that’s about it. But for someone who’s only done basic YouTube yoga at home, I was pleasantly surprised when I first found out I could even lift myself off the mat like that ๐Ÿ˜€ I was quite impressed and quickly fell infatuated with the pose โค ๐Ÿ˜€

Fast forward to last week when I picked it as my first challenge – and this is how I’ve done thus far:

Monday and Tuesday

Okay so Monday and Tuesday I lost internet (and phone and cable TV) connection so it was like … “Helloooo Universe! I’ve just declared a challenge here!! Could you be more supportive?!!” XD XD


I was finally able to get to it with this video:

As usual, I was able to heave myself off the floor with relative ease and I tried to stay in the pose for as long as I could trying to correct my form as I made a mental review of how my body parts were positioned.

There was obviously a lot of room for improvement. One problem that immediately came up was that my wrists could only hold the pose for so long before becoming sore. I could try again for a second time, but a third? My wrists would be screaming bloody murder! o_O


I was feeling really sore and stiff from my strength training on previous days and backbending was the furthest thing on my mind XD


I was feeling under the weather for some reason so I didn’t push it.

Saturday & Sunday

Rest days.


Because I don’t have much to show for it (insert cheeky grin here) I am continuing this challenge for a second week.


But the show must go on and therefor I have taken on a second weekly challenge – as declared – which will be …. dan-dan-daaaaaaan! …

~ oOo ~

Challenge #2

Finish an online course about working from home ๐Ÿ™‚

~ oOo ~

So that’s me for today and I do hope you check back next Monday for more details and updates on not one, but TWO weekly challenges! ๐Ÿ˜€ ๐Ÿ˜€

Here’s to a strong, positive week, warriors โค โค


Minions image found here.

Blogging, Fitness & Vanities

April’s Weekly Challenge #1

redHi-ho sexy warriors! It’s Monday and are you wearing something that makes you look and feel good? Ok, great! Just checking ๐Ÿ˜‰

(P.S. Something red is always a good choice for Mondays especially).

It’s the first week of April and as I sat in front of the laptop pondering what to blog about it hit me – 1st Mondays of the month are always great for challenges. I mean, think about it. Mondays are great for starting something new, generally speaking, but 1st Mondays of the month are more … errr, what shall I say … like it begs/commands/entices you to take up something new for the month. Well that’s how I feel at least ๐Ÿ˜€

So without further ado, I’m declaring a weekly challenge for the whole month of April. Every week I’ll pick up something new to learn/improve (or maybe undo) so that by month-end I’ll have 4 shiny new feathers of sexiness to add to my bohemian-inspired cap.

Squeal! XD

This week’s challenge is to inch closer to being able to do a proper wheel pose.

I’ve always had a soft spot for the wheel pose. I can do an awkward beginner version of it (see second example in picture) but I want to improve because I want to keep my spine long and strong ๐Ÿ™‚

Okay so that is it for this week’s challenge. I’ll let you know how it turns out next Monday and by then I’ll also introduce the second weekly challenge of the month. Wish me luck! ๐Ÿ™‚

Make it a great week, y’all! โค

Fitness & Vanities

September’s Fitness Goals Review


My last fitness update talked about being motivated to move with a lot of exercise options being considered. It all felt like one huge flurry of activity last month. But by now the dust has settled and a rhythm is emerging.

Movement Goals:

1. Group fitness classes –

I’m really not a big believer in steady-state cardio, preferring short bouts of HIIT and strength training instead. However, exercising on your own is just no fun, I’ll admit to that ๐Ÿ™‚

My group fitness classes get me out of the house, remind me to take care of my appearance (yes, this tends to be neglected when you become sorta hermit-ish), and is a means to socialize. So for this alone, it’s still a go, 3 times a week.

2. Fitness Blender Program –

I noticed I was skipping those workouts that were nearly an hour or more long, so I’ve since switched to a program geared for busy people with workouts that stay within the 30~40 min range.

3. 14-day power yoga class –

Went down the drain. I couldn’t access the online classes – thankfully, they’re free – and the perfectionist me just felt it was no use pursuing another program mid-month o_O

4. Walking and swimming –

I wasn’t able to do as much because of this annoying and dangerous haze that’s already lasted for perhaps 3 weeks or so. I don’t know what’s being done about it but an otherwise sunny late afternoon can look like this:


So I haven’t been enjoying my walks as frequently as I would’ve wanted to. I hope it clears up soon! ๐Ÿ˜ฅ
Diet Goals:

1. Plan for next day’s meals the day/night before.

I’m right on top of this especially where it matters most – on weekdays. I prep a lot of stuff the night before so I can just heat up a good meal after coming home from the gym. Whenever I have had a decent breakfast, my cravings throughout the day are almost completely arrested.

I think this one’s in the bag! ๐Ÿ™‚

2. Intermittent fasting. (6pm to 8am).

The 6pm cut-off is still a challenge.

Dinnertime is busy, as you can imagine, and it’s even more so if it’s also the ideal time to go for a walk o_O I’m still experimenting with earlier cooking times and mayhaps will have to move the cut-off to 6:30pm altogether. This is still a work in progress.

Breakfasts no earlier than 8am.

I’ve got this one. The only time I fail is when I forget! And this has happened only once in the past 2 weeks ๐Ÿ™‚


So to wrap up, I’m still gonna focus on these same goals for October. My energy and appetite should even out as well and, here’s to coming out stronger and fitter on the other side ๐Ÿ˜‰

Fitness & Vanities

Mondays Are For Recommitting to Fitness & Vanities ๐Ÿ˜—

hot pinknessI am convinced that no matter how challenging things may get, there’s never an excuse good enough to not take care of yourself. For me, this is usually in the form of exercise and proper grooming, or what I fondly term ‘vanities’.

Admittedly I have allowed my fitness to fall by the wayside ever since arriving in Indonesia. Diet has especially taken a big hit, so as sleep and exercise. Nevertheless, whenever Monday comes around it always reminds me not to let myself go just because.

The last time I talked about exercise was when I found solace in a huge oval for runners/walkers. I had vowed to make good use of that oval, even buying myself some fancy neon colored Nikes for added fun. However, a consistent schedule has been difficult to lay down. There’s the irregular rains as well as my new responsibilities as a homemaker.

So what’s a domestic diva to do? Yep, purchase a structured exercise program by trusted fitness experts to do indoors at any time of the day ๐Ÿ™‚

I’ve slid so much down the fitness ladder ever since my last program that I needed to start with something basic. I also do not have dumbbells yet. So I chose the 4-week Fitness Blender Reach program for flexibility and toning. The combination of pilates, yoga and stretching is perfect to serve as a warm up to a more strenuous program eventually. (I’m already excited about their 4-week bodyweight only program!).


The beginning is always the most difficult, it’s easy to postpone or skip an exercise, making sore muscles and/or a loose schedule an excuse. But therein lies the danger as we all know. I started the previous Monday and am happy to report that – with the help of my daughter whom I’ve designated as my coach – I haven’t missed a single day of the program yet ๐Ÿ™‚ We’ve also started to add a 5-10 min Zumba routine for some cardio.

On the vanities side, I bought myself a new toy. Ta-daaaah!

new toy

I’ve never been particular about curling & straightening before but I figured there’s always space for something new in your life so, might as well ๐Ÿ™‚ And it’s purple โค โค โค

How about you, how are you taking care of yourself lately?