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Your 2018 Holiday Movie and TV Guides!

So it’s mid-November — who needs to just escape into the holiday spirit? No? Just me?

DON’T LIE! As the year wraps up, I’m starting to look forward to heading home to Mom and Dad for the holidays and just escaping the realities of the world because not to be dramatic, but it’s been a TOUGH year. So, if you’re anything like me, you may enjoy indulging in some escapism via warm and fuzzy television programs and classic movies.

But you know, a girl can get overwhelmed with the amount of holiday programs on tv, Netflix, Hallmark, Lifetime, oh boy, oh boy…

Well, to help you not go entirely crazy and make catching the most fabulous airings of the holiday season just a little easier, I’ve created some fun, little guides to follow this holiday season!

Print ’em off, check ’em off, and check it twice 😉

2018 Holiday Movie Guide

This, by no means, is all encompassing, BUT here is a list of classic holiday movies, Hallmark’s 2018 holiday releases, and Netflix original holiday movies!

2018 Holiday TV Guide

Again, this is by no means an all encompassing list, but here are some of the holiday TV options available to you, including some of my all time favorite TV show holiday episodes. Check your local listings, folks!

AND IF THIS JUST ISN’T ENOUGH FOR YOU…

THIS IS BY FAR the most detailed TV holiday schedule I have found on the world wide web. Crack open your planners, friends, because you’re going to need to schedule your viewing times accordingly.

AND IF YOU READ THIS WHOLE POST… guess what…

Those of you who complete the guides in their entirety (or the person who completes the most) will be up for a fun little holiday gift from Santa’s little helper, aka me!

CONTEST RULES:
  • Share your completed checklist by December 25th but sharing on instagram (story or post) and tagging me, @happilyhaleigh so I can see it!
  • If there are multiple completions, a winner will be chosen at random.
  • Winner will be chosen December 26th 🙂

HAVE FUN, HAPPY HOLIDAYS, AND DON’T BE A GRINCH!

xx

happily haleigh

Easy Budget Template!

Raise your hand if finances stress you the heck out?! *Stands on chair to raise her hand as high as possible*

A few weeks ago, I asked on instagram if anyone would be interested in having me share a budget template that I use to track how much I’ve spent each month and on what, and the response was overwhelming! So, I’m finally sharing and just in time for holiday spending!

Honestly, money stresses me out SO much. LIFE IS SO DANG EXPENSIVE AM I RIGHT?! But I find that when I actually sit down and look at where I’m spending my money, I have a better understanding and therefore game plan of where I can cut back, or where I have money to spare.

At the bottom of this post, you’ll find the link to the google sheet that you can make a copy of for personal use, but first I’m going to quickly walk you through how to you use it! Feel free to skip to the bottom if you already feel like a google sheets whiz!

Your Budget Template:

This is what your google sheets budget will look like. There will be two tabs — the budget tab and the transactions tab. Each month, you can change the headings to reflect the month you are budgeting for.

Your Budget Tab:

This is what your budget tab will look like. This is the tab that you will project what you will be spending, where you will see what you have ACTUALLY spent (more on this in a bit), and the difference between those two values.

Let’s go through some of the different cells and values you see in the budget.

  • Project and Actual Income: These are both manual entries. Typically they stay the same, but of course if you have less traditional means of income, that may change more frequently. Just check your direct deposits to see how much you’ve actually brought in each month! *Note* I base my budgets off of what is actually deposited and available to me – NOT a salary. Then you would have to worry about entering taxes and such and ain’t nobody got time for that.
  • Projected, Actual and Difference Balance cells: These are all formulas that will update based on what you enter in your budget sheet!
  • Projected Cost columns: Each month, you will want to manually enter your projected expenses. Often times these will be the same for fixed expenses, but some areas of spending will change! Take time each month to reflect on the past month and adjust for the upcoming month if necessary.
  • Actual Cost columns: This is probably the most important column to look at when tracking your spending. If you click the cells, you’ll see that these cells actually have formulas – these formulas will pull transactions or expenses you track in your transactions tab to the appropriate budget cell. MAGIC.
  • Budget areas/headers: The budgets in pink and the titles going down the first column within each budget are TOTALLY up to you. These are what I use, but you can alter and change them to fit your needs and spending! If you do change them or add lines, just be aware that you will have to make some changes to both the budget page and the transactions page (more on this in a bit).
  • Projected, Actual and Difference Total Cost cells: These are all formulas that will update based on what you enter in your budget sheet!

Your Transactions Tab:

This is what your transactions tab will look like. This is the tab that you will input transactions or expenses that have happened within that month. I list everything: rent, utilities, groceries, i.e. everything I have listed in the budget tab!

Typically, I’ll take some time on Sundays and just go through my spending from that previous week and enter it all in.

Now sure, there are apps that “track your budgets”, but the hard thing is when you go to a store like Target, and you buy groceries, beauty products and cleaning products, the apps will only attribute that total expense to what you have Target listed as. So if you have Target listed as a Grocery budget place, it will say you spent that entire total on groceries, which may not be accurate.

This is why manually tracking is helpful, especially when you are trying to stick to clear budgets. Keep your receipts, and go through them each week and track them manually!

When you enter an expense, you’ll enter the date, the venue (where you spent your dollars), the payment source (which credit card or debit card used or if it was cash), which budget it falls under (there is a drop down with all your budgets listed!), the cost, and any notes associated with the expense.

The magic part? Every expense listed here will AUTOMATICALLY be entered into the “Actual Cost” cell of the associated budget. YOU’RE WELCOME.

Adding/changing budgets and formulas:

  • Adding budgets:
    • If you want to add new budget areas, you can do that pretty easily! Insert a row where you want to add the budget, and format it as needed. Once it’s added, you’ll want to make sure the formula for the transactions tab is copied the the “Actual Cost” cell for your new budget. All you need to do is select a cell with the formula, hit copy, and paste it into the new budget “Actual Cost” cell. Easy! The formula will automatically adjust to be the correct version for the cell to which it is copied.
    • For your reference, this is what the formula is:
    • Once this step is complete, you’ll want to make sure that the transactions tab knows about the new budget. To do this, head to that tab and select the Column E drop down menu, and click “Data Validation” as pictured:
    • In the Data Validation box, you can add your new budget name to the list, separating it by a comma. This is also where you should delete any budget titles that you removed from the budget tab or change any that you altered.

How to get your google sheets budget template:

When you click the link below, it will take you to a view only version of the template. Simply go to the File menu, select “Make a Copy”, and that copy will save an editable version to your google drive!

Each month, I just make a copy of the the previous month’s budget and adjust. I keep all of my monthly budgets in their own folders for future reference.

Fun tip: You can OF COURSE change the colors to suit your personal style, but ya know your girl was gonna go with pink 🙂

GET MY Google Sheets Budget Template!

 

If you have ANY questions or need any help, please let me know! Also let me know if this was helpful and if there is similar content you’d love to see from me.

Happy Spending and Saving!

xx

happily haleigh

Week 4 Update

Four weeks already?! Whaaaaa….. Crazy.

Anyway, I actually shared the below vlog a week or so ago now, so we’re actually in week 5. BUT, if you’re interested, check out the following vlog for a few little updates on how my bulk and health journey are going.

DISCLAIMER: I am not a professional vlogger, so please excuse the lack of quality! This was uncut and unedited because it was just what I was feeling and dealing with in the moment.

UPDATE SINCE THIS VIDEO:

  • Continue to deal with weight fluctuations – went all the way back down to 116lbs but now I’m stable around 120lbs.
  • Eating around 1850 per day – I’ll probably stay here for a bit just because I know I have the holidays and work travel coming up, and I’ll probably inherently end up eating more in those coming weeks – natural bulking :p
  • Still dealing with hair loss (obvi) and IT IS THE MOST ANNOYING.
  • I have a doctor’s appointment with a new endo next week – I am PRAYING that this doctor takes all of my past and current medical struggles seriously. Curious if anyone has experience knowing what thyroid tests to ask for? I know that you have to be really proactive with the information going into one of these appointments. Comment below if you have any tips!

So that’s the little update – enjoying bulking so far, taking it slow, trying not to freak out about all my health ailments and keep my stress in check which is virtually impossible because money sucks, life is hard, and health is silly LOL.

xx

happily haleigh

It’s bulking season… and *I guess* I’m here for it.

Hey hey hey!

If you keep up with me on instagram, you probably saw a recent story of mine chatting about how I plan to do a bulk this winter, starting now.

Now, I’ve attempted to do bulks before, but have always stopped because my goals of having visible ab lines and no cellulite have outweighed any other motive. At the first sign of fat gain and fading cut lines, I’d stop, lower my calories again, and up my cardio, just continuing a vicious cycle.

However, I had a somewhat frightening wake up call the other day. I realized my once thick, full, crazy-curly hair has suddenly become EXTREMELY thin. I’m talking you can see my scalp in certain areas thin – something no 26 year old should be worrying about! Aside from this most recent symptom, I have been dealing with health issues the past year and a half now, things that I truly need to get sorted, and things that I hope this bulk will help with. Let me take you through some Haleigh history.

Here’s a quick snapshot of my health journey the past few years:

  • High-school: I was a stick, danced 6 hours a day, didn’t get my cycle until my senior year.
  • College: Stopped pretty much all physical activity, put on a good amount of fat, started getting my cycle every 3 weeks (annoying!) so I went on BC.
  • Post college, started doing some workouts like BBG, super basic things, etc.
  • August 2016 (after switching to a new BC that caused me extreme water retention to the point of pain), went off of BC because I was sick of hormones. I lost my period then (normal after going off of BC), but end up getting it back in January 2017.
  • October 2016: I was sick of being “skinny fat” and wanted to be a fit instagram gal. I stumbled across this amazing online trainer who preached about reverse dieting (adding more food and getting leaner, heck yes!). I reached out to him and started working with him for 6 months. This is what kicked off my fitness journey and I fell in love with weight lifting.
  • January 2017 (got my period back)
  • March 2017: My leanest point ever.march2017
    I was feeling on top of the world. I was up to eating 1800 calories a day. I felt great. Except for the fact that this is the point I lost my period, and have not had it since.
  • Moving forward from March 2017: I’ve dealt with continuing digestive issues, no cycle, hormonal acne, water retention, fluctuating weight, lack of energy, frequent injuries, pain, hair loss, now having to eat less, just feeling blah about life, etc. FUN FUN FUN.
    • I have had multiple sets of tests done including food sensitivities, hormone testing, neurotransmitter testing, and in a nutshell, I had developed a bunch of food sensitivities (although I have avoided them and I still don’t feel much better), my cortisol was/is so low that I don’t follow the typical rise and fall pattern (it’s just always in the basement no matter what time of day!) AKA adrenal fatigue, and my estrogen and progesterone is low.
    • I have tried progesteral creams (starting this again), herbs, supplements, you name it, and I’m still dealing with all this crap!

So, reluctantly, I have challenged myself to put on weight. Now, strangely, I’m not NEARLY as lean as I was when I lost my period (as you’ll see below), and I’m actually eating less food (sadly, at about 1650/1700 calories a day) because I probably did some damage to my metabolism after becoming so lean. So in theory, I feel like I should have enough BF to have my cycle again , but alas, that is not the case and I’ve been without it for over a year and a half now. My thought process is maybe I’m actually under-eating for my activity level, so my body thinks I’m starving myself so it’s holding on to weight/water it doesn’t need truly? Not sure. I might just need more food and nutrients to heal than I’m thinking, and I may just have to be okay with gaining some fat.

Gaining fat. Ugh. I know this sounds so vain, but when I worked with my trainer, I worked SO hard for the body I achieved, and I honestly will be so, so sad to watch that fade. I know I shouldn’t be so concerned with my appearance, but my body image has always been something I struggled with (that could be a whole separate post). So, sticking to this bulk and seeing my body go through changes I don’t necessarily want (added fat, cellulite, saying by to my abs, being fluffier), is going to be so difficult. And, I’m struggling because I’m not currently as lean as I would want to be before starting a bulk, but I guess that’s the issue that landed me here in the first place… Logically I know that I need to do it, but emotionally it is stressful.

I realize that this post and journey actually comes at an interesting time as today is World Mental Health Day. I want to verbalize that I know that much of my struggles are as much mental health struggles as they are physical health struggles. I own that, and hope that if anyone else is going through something similar, that you know you’re not alone!

 

Recently, I found the KK Fit twins (@kk_fit_) on instagram. They are so open and honest about their fitness journey, how they put on a good amount of fat on their bulk, and how they came out the other side and added healthy muscle and are now basically beasts in the gym. Seeing their progress, I bit the bullet and got their 10-week bulking guide, and honestly, they have been so supportive and interactive so far, even though they aren’t technically coaching me!

So following that 10-week guide with very slooooowly upping my calories, I hope to start healing myself this fall/winter, and if you’re interested, I’m going to be very rawly and openly documenting my journey with weekly updates right here, and possibly some vlogs. I’ll be uploading progress pics, weigh-ins, nutrition information, bullets on how I’m feeling/what I’m experiencing, and any  tips and tricks I discover along the way.

So to start off, here’s me, week 1 of the KK-Fit bulking guide and the first week of increasing my calories slightly.

Side note 1: I’m stressed posting these photos because I’m not happy. I personally feel I’m far from where I’ve been before, so I’m bummed, and stressed that I’m going to have to get even more uncomfortable with my appearance before it gets better.
Side note 2: Not looking for pity comments or “Haleigh you look great though!” comments, because we all live in our OWN reality, so all we need to do is support each other in how we feel 🙂
Side note 3: I’m flexing so hard in these lol. The light is helping, but I left these unedited for that #reality.
Side note 4: You can see that I just look kinda puffy – a lot of inflammation, a little fat from celebrations, but I guess I’ll need to get used to that!
P.S. Looking back at these pics, I noticed my little card that I have displayed “You are one badass female” and I really feel that I just need to vibe with that more, ya know???

Week 1 Calories: 1,750 a day || P: 113g || C: 200g || F: 55g

Weight: 124.9 lbs (already 4 lbs up from where I was averaging… again probably water retention). I also took measurements, but I’ll share those at a later date.

How I’m feeling: hesitant, already fluffier, trying to resist the urge to go do cardio as we speak, slightly sad, honestly stressed, but hopeful.

Alright y’all, that’s all for now! I’ll be updating my journey weekly! If you are or have gone through something similar, I would love to connect with you!

xx

happilyhaleigh

 

 

At it again: GF/DF Banana Choco Chip Muffins!

After being so happy with how my GF/DF/refined sugar-free/low calorie delicious Zucchini Bread turned out, I had to try my hand at something else!

Luckily, I happened to have some persnickety bananas that decided to over-ripen far too quickly, and I, hating to be wasteful, had to find something to do with them!

Like the zucchini bread, I LOVE my mama’s banana bread, so I decided, hey, the substitution recipe can’t be that different than zucchini!

And lemme tell ya sis, I was right. Another spot on recipe, and this was super quick and easy! I made them early in the morning and they were mixed, out of the oven and in my mouth in about 45 minutes. These muffins are full of banana-y goodness, with a hint of naughty from chocolate chips without all the calories, gluten or dairy 🙂 My cousin even said they taste like Panera’s – I’ll take the compliment!

 

Bananabread

If you have some unruly bananas lying around and an itch for some muffin goodness, take notes:

Bananabread-8

Ingredients:

  • 2 cups mashed bananas (about 3-4 bananas)
  • 1/4 cup Truvia Nectar (or honey if you’re not trying to get the calories/sugar!)
  • 3 tablespoons egg whites (can sub for 1 large egg or flax egg if vegan)
  • 1/2 unsweetened applesauce (could use greek yogurt if not dairy free)
  • 1 tablespoon unsweetened nut milk of choice
  • 2 teaspoons vanilla extract (I don’t measure this)
  • 1 1/2 cups Bob’s Red Mill Gluten Free Flour (or whole wheat pastry flour or white whole wheat flour if you don’t mind gluten)
  • 1 teaspoon baking soda
  • ½ teaspoon salt
  • 1 1/2 teaspoons ground cinnamon
  • ¼ cup coconut oil, melted and cooled (can sub melted butter or vegan butter)
  • 1/2 cup chocolate chips! (I use Lily’s Dark Chocolate Chips to keep it dairy free and no sugar added!)

Instructions:

  1. Preheat oven to 350 degrees F. Grease a 12 cup muffin tin with nonstick cooking spray.
  2. Mix bananas, Truvia Nectar, eggs, nut milk, vanilla extract, coconut oil and applesauce until smooth. This an be done in a bowl with hand mixer or in a mixer if you own one!
  3. In a separate medium bowl, whisk together the flour, baking soda, salt, and cinnamon.
  4. Next, add the wet ingredients into the dry ingredients and mix until combined.
  5. Finally fold in the chocolate chips and mix again until well combined (leave a few to sprinkle on top later!)
  6. Pour into prepared muffin tin and bake for 25 minutes until tester comes out clean.
  7. Transfer to wire rack to cool and enjoy!

Nutritional Profile:

For 1 muffin:

Calories: 129 | Fat: 3.3g | Carbs: 25.9g | Fiber: 3.7g | Sugars: 9.1g | Protein: 2.6g

Nutritional Benefits:

Did you know that bananas pack some serious health benefits? Many people shy away from them because they are high in sugar and carbs, but they are HEALTHY sugars and carbs! Check out some main reasons of why I love bananas and you should too:

  1. Bananas provide so many vitamins! 
    • Potassium – supports blood pressure, cardiovascular health, bone strength and muscle strength
    • Vitamin B6 – helps maintain a healthy nervous system, helps boost mood, and helps create important antibodies
    • Vitamin C – helps fight against chronic disease, improves iron absorption and boosts immunity
    • Magnesium – ALL THE THINGS – energy creation, nervous system support, muscle movement, protein formulation, so important for woman issues!
    • FIBER – we all know why this is important 🙂
  2. They help moderate blood sugar levels
    • Anyone else deal with dizzy spells? Yeah, bananas are your friend, girl.
  3. Bananas can help with digestive health! (Hello dear friends ilysm)
    • Bananas contain pectin (although it decrease as they ripen), which is said to help prevent colon cancer.
    • Bananas contain resistant starch, which bypasses digesting and ends in the large intestine, feeding good gut bacteria.
  4. ANTIOXIDANTS!
    • Do I really need to talk about why we need these? (Let me know if we do, I’ll do a post!)

So, bake these yummy bad boys and feel no shame while devouring them!

Comment below if you try – would love to hear your thoughts!

xx

happily haleigh

Zucchini Bread – GF & DF & major success!

As many of you know, I have been dealing with some pretty annoying digestive issues for a little over a year now, and they’re still (frustratingly) not super in check!

But one thing I do know is that over-indulging in gluten and dairy always sets me off (hello, inflammation!), so in my typical diet when I’m not out with friends, those aren’t a party of my routine.

With Fall approaching though, my mind is lingering on yummy breads as we start to get prepped for the season. Breads are usually laden with gluten, dairy, refined sugar, ya know, you’re typical nasties (but things that we all enjoy from time to time!).

Recently, I’ve made it a goal of mine to start cooking and baking more than I already do and experimenting in the kitchen. While I was home with my parents last week, my mom had THE LARGEST zucchini I’ve ever seen from her garden, and she said she had planned to make zucchini bread – I jumped on the bandwagon and asked if I could try my hand at my own healthier version, and so, we had a little mommy daughter bake-off.

My mom used her traditional recipe – buttermilk Bisquick, eggs, sugar, cinnamon, nutmeg, vegetable oil, baking soda. DELICIOUS! But, there are a few things in there that would set me off!

My version? I followed some guidelines from Ambitious Kitchen, and made a few adjustments of my own. I subbed the whole wheat baking flour for gluten free, the honey for Truvia nectar and omitted the nuts.

zucchinibread-9.jpg

The verdict?

SIMPLY WONDERFUL. (If you don’t trust me, my dad, mom and friend Elizabeth can attest!)

It was flavorful, moist, didn’t taste like any “healthy” adjustments were made, and best of all, sensitivity friendly!

This is a must try, so get ready to get your bake on!

Ingredients:

  • 2 cups shredded zucchini
  • 1/2 cup Truvia Nectar (or honey if you’re not trying to get the calories/sugar!)
  • 2 large eggs
  • ⅓ cup unsweetened vanilla almond milk
  • 2 teaspoons vanilla extract
  • 2 cups Bob’s Red Mill Gluten Free Flour (or whole wheat pastry flour or white whole wheat flour if you don’t mind gluten)
  • 1 teaspoon baking soda
  • ½ teaspoon salt
  • 1 1/2 teaspoons ground cinnamon
  • ¼ teaspoon nutmeg
  • ¼ cup coconut oil, melted and cooled (can sub melted butter or vegan butter)

Instructions:

  1. Preheat oven to 325 degrees F. Grease a 8×4 inch loaf pan (I think glass works best!) with nonstick cooking spray.
  2. Mix zucchini, Truvia Nectar, eggs, almond milk, vanilla extract until smooth. This an be done in a bowl with hand mixer or in a mixer if you own one!
  3. In a separate medium bowl, whisk together the flour, baking soda, salt, cinnamon and nutmeg.
  4. Next, add the dry ingredients into the wet ingredients and mix until combined.
  5. Finally add in coconut oil and mix again until well combined.
  6. Pour into prepared glass loaf pan and bake for 55-65 minutes until tester comes out clean.
  7. Transfer to wire rack to cool and serve into 12 slices.

Nutritional Profile:

For 1 slice of 12:

Calories: 162 | Fat: 6.1g | Carbs: 23.4g | Fiber: 2.2g | Sugars: 9.2g | Protein: 3.3g

Comment below if you try – would love to hear your thoughts!

xx

happily haleigh

 

Here we go again…

Hello, hello!

I’ve done this before, but I’m restarting my blog. Actually, I’m starting fresh on a lot of things.

For some of my close friends, they already know I’ve been dealing with these feelings, but I have continued to feel lost and unfocused, continued to struggle with health problems, and have just generally not felt like “Haleigh”.

You may not be able to see this from my instagram, but it’s true. I can remember days when I was full of energy, a brighter (and slightly weirder and crazier) version of myself — and I want her back. I’m sure it’s a combination of societal pressures and my imbalanced hormones, but I’m struggling to feel energized and passionate, and I know that’s just not me!

So I’m restarting this blog not to promote it, not to be a blogger, not to be anything to anyone except myself. I’m keeping this as a space where I can be happily Haleigh, talking about my health struggles, the things I love, making it look how I want, and not worrying about the feedback I either receive or do not receive on it.

While this is my space, I’m happy to share with you. I hope that if you do stick around and follow along, that something resonates with you! Always feel free to drop a hello – friends are fun 🙂

As I post more, I’ll share more in depth about the future content of this site, but I wanted to keep it short and sweet. Briefly, things I’ll be posting about:

  • Hormone imbalances and the quest to get my period back (sorry if that’s TMI but not really that sorry LOL).
  • Food intolerances – living with them and alternative recipes!
  • Fitness routines
  • Fashion/Beauty
  • Pop culture things I love
  • General commentary/venting pieces

xx

happily haleigh