Saturday, September 22, 2007

My yarn is here!!

Well, I was going to start this out with saying how happy I was my yarn is here and post pictures of my new stash and WIPs. Then I found out that blogger thinks it's really cool to have everyone's pictures on a scrolling thingamajig, if they've been uploaded to the site. So instead, I will upload my pictures at photobucket and then link to a slideshow of them instead. I'm just not sure how I feel about my pictures being flashed around, and there is no opt-out. I understand I'm putting them up on the WWW for the world to see, but there's a big difference between someone actively searching for my posts and pictures and a corporation deciding to flaunt them for us.'s my stash! :) $87.42 from :-)

I will start the 2 flannel-ghans today, and rotate projects. The baby hearts 'ghan should be done this week!


Thursday, September 20, 2007

Happy Thursday!!

I got my yarn today, I'm so excited!! I have to flannel-ghans to make for Christmas. One I won't be able to post pictures of until after Christmas, in case the friend I'm making it for decides to read my blog. :-) The other one I will be able to. It was sooo nice to see that big ol' package when I got home!! I bought enough yarn for the 2 flannel-ghans, a sweater, and what I thought would top off what I needed for a hoody pattern. Turns out the pattern was written for larger skeins, so I only have about 1/3 of what I need. Not good!! But I've already started one, so... :-)

I will be finishing the baby-ghan this weekend, so I can start the other 2 with a good conscience. :-) I still have the cross stitch sampler to work on and school starts next week!!!! Yipes!! :-) I have it all worked out work....crafting...bed. See? :-)

I just wanted to add my thoughts on Britney Spears. See, I'm a 33 year old who enjoys listening to her. When I saw clips of the VMA show, I felt so sorry for her. Yes, there are lots of celebrity kids who turned out fine. Have you noticed, though, that those are also the ones who are not hounded by the paparazzi? I really hope she pulls together, because she is really very talented. I think that people just need to back off and let her live her life. I'm not a perfect mom, and we shouldn't expect celebrities to be perfect, either. She's made some mistakes, but who hasn't?

OK...that came about because I heard part of one of her songs on a commercial for "Meerkat Manor"....I need a life!! lol


Wednesday, September 19, 2007

My Daemon

From the movie "The Golden Compass"....

What do you think? :-)


Tuesday, September 11, 2007

'Tis Tuesday

Not much new on this front. I did take the initiative to join this past Sunday. I am feeling it out, but so far I like the people there. It seems like everywhere I go I find more snippiness than friendliness. Maybe it's just me? :-)

I was pretty tired of thoughtless (aka brain dead!) people on the phones at work today. You simply can't call up a catalog company and ask them to send a product without paying for it, for the love of pete!! Or take 20 minutes asking the order entry rep to place an order and then say "Oh, I don't have my credit card!" and hang up!! Oy.

I am steadily working on my niece's blanket (at least we think it's a niece...unless baby's hiding something! lol) and it is so pretty. I can't wait to post pictures!!

DH was out of town last night, so I didn't sleep as well as usual. We've had reports of a peeping tom who also will walk on into houses in the area. So much for feeling secure. :-( But, miserable as I and DS are, not feeling safe anymore, DH doesn't want to move. So here we are. Such is life.

On a positive note - it was a beautiful fall day today!! :-)


Saturday, September 08, 2007

Happy Weekend

Yay! It's finally not hot hot hot!! It's actually rather chilly!! :-) It's my favorite time of year, though. One of them. Fall and Spring. And winter, when it's not horribly cold (like below zero cold!!).

Of course, this means that I have no excuse for not exercising. I finally got my beloved Yourself!Fitness, and I've used it all of once. :-( My dog practically BEGS to be taken for a walk or bike ride, and there I sit, making idle promises. I have not lost a pound in months, my knees hurt, I'm tired all the time, my cholesterol is still up. *sigh* And who do I have to blame for it? Me. :-)

I've come to the conclusion that I need some help in this venue. SparkPeople is nice, but I had some problems fitting in I think. TOPS doesn't have a meeting that I can attend within 40 miles. Same with Weight Watchers. No Jenny Craig nearby, nor an LA Weightloss. I'm really thinking again about Richard Simmons. Yes, THAT Richard Simmons. :-) Hard to believe he will be celebrating his 60th birthday next year!!!

So, if there is anyone reading this, please let me know your thoughts and/or opinions!!!


Saturday, September 01, 2007's me again... :-)

But don't tell anyone!! lol

I really need to get better about this whole blogging thing. Go figure. :-)

I have 1 quarter (out of 3, plus a test prep course) done in my medical transcription course. I passed...yay me!!

I quit the hospital and am now working at VanDyke's. I work in a call center, and enjoy it and the co-workers. One reminds me of a gal I worked with back in the Black Hills, and she's just as nice, so that's all good!! :-) It's also "steady" work, M-F 9:30AM-6PM, no weekends, no nights, no holidays. :-) It will also be easier for my course, as I can work on it for an hour in the mornings and a couple of hours in the evenings and then on weekends as well.

We transferred Ori up to the Huron High School. He has lots more friends up there, most from Bible Camp, and there is more that he can do up there. He is really happy, by the way things are looking, and I am really hoping that his grades will reflect that.

Scott is still at his job, and another chef has walked off. It sounds like they won't replace that one, but split the duties up between him and the head chef. As if they were not understaffed enough??? Oy.

Otherwise, we're pretty much status quo. I did get Yourself!Fitness for my laptop, and I love it!! Now I just need to get into the habit of USING it. LOL For some reason, I can't lose weight unless I DO something. Go figure. ;-

On the upside, I just found out that I CAN upload videos to Google and keep them private...too bad I had to go through a search engine then to to figure it out! Sometimes I wonder... :-) I love Google, though, so no complaints now that I've found it!!


Sunday, April 15, 2007

Interesting things of note, but probably only to me. :-)

I've spent the last couple of weeks not wanting to be near a computer, not wanting to work, read, crochet or really do much of anything. Want to know what I have to show for it?

WEIGHT GAIN. Yup. Weight gain. Here I am, trying to get healthier, and where has it gotten me? NOWHERE. Urgh.

I read somewhere that your fat cells have something to do with storing hormones (I think it was estrogen, but don't quote me on that). And with these excess hormones, obese people are typically more lethargic, depressed, etc. etc. No wonder it's so hard to get up off my patootie and work out. BUT I also know that when I do work out, I feel better for a long time afterward.

I also think the weather has a lot to do with how we feel. Here in eastern South Dakota, we've had rain or snow non-stop for the last few months. We had a week of gorgeous (we're talking 70s here!) weather, then it snowed again, then rain rain and more rain. On Friday, I ran to Mitchell to get dog food (Chicken Soup for the Dog Lover's Soul, I highly recommend it!!) and run a couple of other errands (ShopKo had an awesome 2-day sale on bookshelves, for one!). On the way back, I stopped at a gas station for a drink and a snack (Jack's Links Jerky, gotta love it!!). The cashier mentioned how she had noticed that, even though the price of gas had just gone up 10 cents a gallon, no one that day complained about it. They ALL commented on the gorgeous weather. She said even regulars that came in and were known for being "grumpy" were not as grumpy as usual. As I drove home, I thought about what she had said, and thought back over my day. I had worked a 1/2 day at the hospital, walked the 4 blocks to where my DH works so I could get the van, ran my errands, parking farther away than usual at the stores, and I was in a great mood. The walk felt good, even carrying my bag of stuff. I enjoyed it, even though I was walking in public were lots of people could see me (pretty rare for me!!).

So, could SAD have been part of what's been wrong with me all these months? Do I just need, like everyone does, a little more sunshine in my life? :-) I know our dog is certainly enjoying the nicer days. She is still stuck on a tie-out in the back yard, but at least she's not cooped up in the house anymore!! We do plan on building her a kennel this summer, money permitting. :-) But the tie-out works for her, and will work even better when we get the tree limbs cleared up and I can move it so she has a full circle to run instead of just 2/3 of one. The cats have all found the sunny spots throughout the day, and you can just about set your sundial by them. :-)

One thing I am really looking forward to doing is sitting on my front porch and crocheting. The pink slouchy shrug didn't turn out well with the yarn choices I made, so I'm re-doing it using directions I found at the Crochetville forum. It's slow going, as I rushed to get the slouchy one done and now my wrist is a bit unhappy. Darn tendinitis. :-) Even sitting on the front porch and reading will be nice!! :-) I also plan on making a kerchief with some leftover yarns, but otherwise I don't have any new projects I plan on starting. Scratch that, yes I do. LOL Christmas gift for my sister-in-law. :-)

We still have the limbs of 10 trees in our yard. My town, in its infinite wisdom, gave the key to the area for yard waste to someone who does not have a phone. I'm just waiting for them to complain about the back yard!! I will send a note with this month's water/trash payment requesting that this person contact us so we can get this done finally. Hopefully before the grass dies beneath the limbs!!

This week we'll be taking a day trip to Sioux Falls for our neice's birthday. She'll be TWO already, I can hardly believe it. I have to pick up the rest of her gift and make the dress we decided on for her. Wal-Mart has this cute fabric that is pre-gathered at the top specifically for this, and because most of the work is done, it will be a quick project (that I hopefully won't botch! LOL).

Well, this is probably enough rambling for the day...thanks for checking in!!


Monday, April 02, 2007

Happy April!!!

I hope everyone had a safe April Fool's Day!! :-) I slept through mine, which is probably a good thing!! LOL

Just a quick update. My new WIP is not going to be the Lion Brand shrug, but rather this one. The Tutu yarn was too expensive, so instead I am using Caron Simply Soft in Rubine Red (I think, but it's a really BRIGHT pink! LOL) and for the ribbing on the sleeve cuffs and around the body I am using Bernat Boa in "Chick". It shouldn't take too long to do up, and I can't wait to wear it!! I'm picturing it with a black sleeveless polo I have, or white tees, or I have a floral shirt that it would be perfect with.

I weigh in tomorrow, but I am not thinking there will be much in the weight loss department. My perserverance has taken a vacation, unfortunately. I did get the book from the library, and photocopied the pages I wanted. I plan on modifying it a bit in that instead of using 3 pound dumbbells and isometric/dynamic tension, I will use a resistance tube. And somehow start Monday, even if I am coming off of night shift!! :-) I also plan on walking my dog most days this week (Thursday might be tricky since I work day shift) and hitting the gym at least twice.

On that note...I better go study some more. Thanks for checking in, sorry it was a rather dull post this time around. Until next time!!


Wednesday, March 28, 2007

Finished Project!!

I have a finished crochet project!! Now to see if I can figure out pictures here. I've heard rumors that it can be...finicky. :-) It's a shrug from a DIYNetwork pattern with a shell pattern at the bottom and scallops on the cuffs and collar. You can't see the collar, though. Most of my spring/summer shirts are sleeveless and that's not acceptable at work. So I'm hoping that I can get away with wearing shrugs over them, using yarn I have on hand (de-stashing to boot! LOL) rather than having to go spend money on new clothes. I hate clothes shopping anyway. we go...

I do like it, and I even like how I look in it, which is rare. :-) It's a very simple pattern, and now that I've done it once, I can also modify it in the future. BUT next on my list is one made from Lion Brand Homespun Yarn, the color is "Blueridge". Unfortunately it's a discontinues yarn, so here's hoping I have just enough to finish this project!! The pattern is here, and since I plan on making the sleeves a little shorter, I should be OK. I have 1 UFO (Un Finished Object) to get done this week (hopefully by tomorrow) then I will start this one. It seems odd making something for ME for a change!! LOL

As far as workouts, this week has been somewhat but not really slow. LOL Monday I raked leaves and bagged 'em for about an hour, then later on that evening took my dog for a 30 minute walk. She was happy, since she's been essentially stuck indoors all winter long. Yesterday...nada. :-( Well, lots of trips around the house with laundry, I suppose. :-) Today I had hoped to hit the gym, but I will take my dog for a walk again this afternoon. I have a meeting tonight at 5:15 and I don't pick up my DH until 8, so hopefully I can still squeeze some gym time in there! I plan on wearing my shrug (above) with one of my sleeveless tops to the meeting so I can get my supervisor's approval before I go too gung-ho. :-)

Thanks for checking in!!!


Saturday, March 24, 2007

New Goals I'm at work, and I've been thinking long and hard on some things. Like my job and it's frustrations. But it has a lot of positives, too. So I'm debating between keeping it or looking for another one. I'll let you know on that when I decide. :-)

The other thing I keep thinking about is my health. It's not the greatest, but thankfully it's not all that bad either. I have slightly elevated blood pressure and cholesterol at the moment. At my weight, it could be a LOT worse. I could have very high blood pressure, clogged arteries, diabetes and breathing issues. OK, so I have breathing issues when I'm done going up a flight of stairs, but they could be worse. ;-)

I'm setting a new goal of at least walking 1 mile per day and Monday when we go to the library again I'm going to check out a book on strength-training that I enjoyed a long time ago. I'm going to go to the Nordby Center as many days as possible, but on the days I can't go I'm going to either take my dog on a long walk or use a Walk Away The Pounds dvd. I will also go to the once-a-week yoga class at the Nordby Center. When I reach my first weight-loss goal of 14 pounds, I will purchase another dvd or book on fitness/health. That will be my reward. :-)

My poor husband, God bless him, tries to be supportive, and he IS! When we have pizza (the bane of my weight loss journey!) he always asks if I want 1 piece or 2. I always say 2. I should always say 1. Last night I "gave him permission" to trick me. When I say I want 2 pieces, to give me 1 piece and cut it in half!! LOL We cut (rather, HE cuts) pretty big pieces, a 16" pizza he cuts into 6 pieces, so you can see why 2 pieces is too much. :-) He found it amusing, and I have to give him credit, he WILL do it, too. One of the things I love about him!!

And for my birthday? (Which isn't until May, but it pays to plan ahead!) I want new tires for my bike. When we moved (over a year ago!!) I discovered that one of mine had rotted and since they're an odd size, I need to replace both. Then we see how well my dog does at staying nearby when I'm on a bike and not walking! I think she'll do well, though.

So what are your goals?


Friday, March 23, 2007

Yikes! A whole month??

No wonder Tanya was getting on my case!! I can't believe it's been a whole month since my last post!! (Thank you, Tanya, I need someone to get on my case!!)

I suppose it's because not much has been going on. I've made the decision to again work towards my goal of becoming a Medical Transcriptionist. It will be a few months until I can re-enroll in the course I had started, but I will continue to work on it in the interim with the materials I have. I've become increasingly frustrated with my job at the hospital. I love the people (generally) and I do like the position. But the switching back and forth from night shift to day shift is really taking its toll on not only myself and my health, but also on my family. I was also supposed to only be working every 3rd weekend, and so far I've been working 2-3 weekends a month instead. I don't mind filling in & helping out when needed, but I really feel like I've been taken advantage of. I did address this with the supervisor, and the reply was "well, we can't pull from the Business Office to cover, they have to get caught up on their work." Which I understand, I do, but this person should NOT be permitted to pull the stuff she has been (including changing the schedule without talking to me and changing other people's requests for time off that have been approved already!). I've arranged an interview with a local department store, we'll see if they can meet my needs. I want to stay part-time with benefits, and while working the occasional weekend is OK, I want most of them off. My son is only 14 once, and I've missed almost 1/2 this year already!! But also, I don't mind working more days per week for only a few hours a day during school hours. I really feel that I need to be more available to my son, and this job is just not cutting it like I thought it would.

BUT to keep this from totally becoming a rant post... :-) For crafting, I've almost completed a set of 6 placemats/coasters for a friend, I'm working on a shrug to wear to work (because I can't wear sleeveless tops, and all of my tops for summer are sleeveles!!), I've found my blue knifty knitter loom back so I can work on some projects on that again. Most cool: I got a candle making kit!! I haven't tried it yet, but I plan to next week. It came with wax, I also picked up a couple of scents to try, additional wax and colors. I can't wait to try it!! (Because I can never have too many hobbies!! LOL)

The kitties are all doing well, loving the new-to-us sectional sofa we got. It really opened up the house, giving them lots of room to run. The dog is loving the spring weather, as she gets to be outside again. She's probably really looking forward to walks too!! :-) My husband is doing great, he's been a non-smoker since Jan. 29th and I'm so proud of him!! My son is looking forward to summer so he can go swimming. We're lucky enough to have a pool across the street from our house, and it's free to residents. YAY!! :-)

Until next time...


Sunday, February 25, 2007

Things that make you go Hmmmm....

So I'm sitting here, after a wonderful supper of pork cutlets, mashed potatoes and peas, and realizing that I don't feel hungry. Odd only because before, I could eat almost an entire large pizza by myself. Tonight I had a serving of meat, 2 of starch and 2 of veggies. And I'm not hungry.

It reinforces what all people who need to lose weight are told: portion control and eating properly is the way to go. Yes, exercise is a big factor, but proper nutrition is also key.

Take that pizza, for example. I can eat pizza and keep eating it, even knowing that later on, I'm going to be nauseous. It doesn't matter that I KNOW I'm going to be nauseous later, I will still eat until there's no pizza left. It is not filling and it leaves no satisfaction. Mashed potatoes and peas are filling, and left me satisfied. The pork cutlets were divine (have I ever mentioned that I married a chef??) and yet after that single serving, I was good.

In thinking back, when I am eating healthy, I am rarely hungry, my complexion is good and I have more energy. When I start eating junk food, I eat MORE, I feel ill more, I have no energy and my complexion bites.

I wonder why it is that people don't always realize this? Is it because we're so focused on the short-term "feel goods" we wipe out the long term "feel bads" when we eat junk? And we wipe out the long term "feel goods" from eating properly? Does anyone out there have any insight for me on this one? In the meantime, I will work better on my long term "feel goods". :-)


Saturday, February 17, 2007

I have turned in my resignation!!

I have turned in my resignation. It read something like this:

Dear Boardmembers of the Clean Plate Club;

I am hereby resigning my position in your club. It has been a pleasure to have been a member for these past 32 years, however the Club is going down a path that I no longer believe in, and thus I do not feel I can fully contribute any longer.

I do not believe that the starving children in (insert country here) will care whether my plate is empty, and since I have no way of sending the food to them, it is a moot point.

I do not believe that I won't grow big and strong if I don't clean my plate. In point of fact, as a result of constantly cleaning my plate, I have grown far bigger than I needed to, and not nearly strong enough.

I also no longer believe that I am required to completely fill my plate at buffets and return for more several times.

Also, I have noticed that the size of your plates have increased over the years. You told me that since I was a big girl, I could eat off an adult-sized plate now, but I realize now that that is just a ploy used to help me eat more. I am definitely a big girl now, thanks.

In fact, over the past few months, I have realized that being a member of the Clean Plate Club has been detrimental to my health and well-being. I don't think you meant to be, but it just sort of happened. In fact, it happened around the time "portions" and "veggies" and "you are what you eat" were banned from the Club. You may want to re-think that rule.

Again, I want to thank you for the last 32 years. The last few months have taught me what not to do, and as such, again, I no longer feel I can be a contributing member of your Club. If you have any questions, feel free to contact me. Following is my new mailing address:

c/o Healthy Living Club

Monday, February 12, 2007

What leaps of faith are you going to take?

The following is a quote from SparkPeople that I really liked:

Trying new things can give you a real zest for life. Pushing beyond your comfort zone in a responsible way helps you grow confidence and creativity that you can apply to your everyday life. Do not let fear control what you do (or don't) do? While taking risks can be scary, doing nothing is a big mistake, as it produces nothing fruitful within you. There is a direct relationship between the things that we achieve and the effort we put forth to obtain them. To reach the fruit, you have to climb the tree first!

How many times, in looking back, do you wish you had tried something new when it came your way? For me, a few stick out. Learning to make artificial flowers from my godmother because for some reason I didn't want to learn from my mother (my brother and I , I guess). And now, I wish I had learned to knit from Mom. I want to knit, I know I can do it, but it would have been a lot easier to learn from her. For those who don't know, she passed away unexpectedly in November, and so naturally I have a lot of regrets/lost chances. (She was only 54.)

I'm a newlywed (little over 1 year!) and I'm also trying to lose weight/get healthier. I'm very self-conscious, and so even the thought of telling my DH "I'm going upstairs to use the treadmill" is scary for me. Not because he's not supportive (he's VERY supportive!) but because I just know he's picturing me on the treadmill and the thought of that is almost as scary to me as getting up on stage would be. Generally, I'm home alone, and so I do it whenever. But on his days off, it's trickier for me. I don't want to take time away from him, but we both want me to be healthier. So I've been trying to be a lot better about just doing it. Climbing the stairs to get to where the treadmill is certainly feels like climbing a tree to get the fruit!

So...which trees will you climb today?


Friday, February 09, 2007

A funny thing about diet/self-help books

**Disclaimer** I'm just surmising what I've read, I'm not a doctor, nurse or any other type of health care provider. Take what I am typing with a grain of salt, but do not hold me responsible if you didn't consult with a medical provider and hurt yourself in some way shape or form. Thanks!!

OK, so after my Mother's death, I decided that I needed to get healthier. In the process, I've been doing a lot of reading. I've read most of "You on a Diet", most of Bob Green/Oprah Winfrey's book, the Curves book, Leslie Sansone's 6 week book, 2 of Jorge Cruise's books. You get the idea. I've noticed a very prevalent theme to these books. If I could sum them all up, this is how I would do it.

Really, this should have been #1, but I'm letting it stand alone: Talk to your doctor. Get yourself tested for thyroid issues, iron levels, vitamin levels, gluten-intolerance or other food allergies, diabetes, cholesterol, the whole gamut. If you don't have insurance, then look for an income-based health care provider. Over the years, I've found that the staff at the income-based clinics treat me far better than the ones at the "power" clinics. They take the time to listen and make sure I understand what it is I need to know.

1. Eat better. If that means eating less, fine. If it means changing what you eat to a healthier version, fine.

2. Move more. Walk daily. Even just for 15 minutes a day, it's better than nothing.

3. Drink your water. Yup, all 8 glasses of it. It helps flush the fat out of your system, as well as any other impurities/toxins/not-good-for-you things.

4. Take the time to determine WHY you are eating the foods and amounts that you are eating. Did you eat that entire cake because you were really really hungry or did you eat it because your significant other just dumped you for the annoying next-door neighbor? Are you starving yourself because it's what you saw your parent do growing up? The same parent who is still overweight because they've blown their metabolism?

It's interesting that I've paid for 5-8 books on weight loss, quite a few little "booklets", checked out dozens more, and they all essentially say the same thing.

Get up and move. Eat healthier. Work through your issues instead of eating through them, and drink your water. What's on your plan for today?


Tuesday, February 06, 2007

The next installment of The Trouble with Fat

She woke up that morning not wanting to get out of the warm bed into the cold air. That was a problem with the big farmhouse they had bought, but it was one she was willing to contend with. She loved the house, even though she hated how she felt after climbing the stairs. Winded, and definitely not sexy. Her husband still calls her "One Hot Mama" though, and she feels confident she will become what he calls her. It's a far cry from being called "chappa" by her ex. He later broke it to her that it was Cherokee for "fat". Whether that was true or not, at a size 12 her "love of her life" should not have called her a nickname he understood to mean fat. She was glad to be rid of him, that's for sure. And hopefully she will be that size 12 again. But a 14 or 16 would work too!

She made her way downstairs, to see her husband making coffee. She made herself a smoothie, making sure she added the flax seed. It kept her appetite stemmed and was a good source of fiber. Inside, her fat cells were crying. They wanted peanut butter, and lots of it. "Sorry guys," she murmured, "not until I decide that's what I really want."

As she curled up under the blanket on the couch, her fat cells began their daily banter. "You know, with more of us, you're better insulated for the cold. Have you ever seen a SKINNY Eskimo?" "Hmph. I've never seen an Eskimo period, and it's not going to work, guys." She told her husband she would do her 15 minute walk at 4PM, so that he wouldn't be surprised when she got up and did it. Also, in the hopes that he would help hold her accountable.

She went to SparkPeople and logged her foods for the day, after breakfast and lunch. Then she had a peanut butter and jelly sandwich for a snack, on 2 slices of small gluten-free bread. The fat cells were sending up complaints, not enough peanut butter. "Ah, but that's an advantage to small bread...less peanut butter will fit, guys." YIKES! She cringed when she finally entered the snack. GF bread has twice as many calories as regular bread! The fat cells rejoiced at her slip-up.

Their celebration didn't last long. The battle had started to go downhill for them when she made it to the treadmill at 4, and felt so good that she did 30 minutes instead of only 15! They tried to retaliate by jiggling madly, but she had worn jiggle there! That night at work she researched GF tortillas and lefse. Low-calorie and perfect for the peanut butter and honey sandwiches she craved. Slowly, the fat cells began to wither. They began to plan for the next day. And soon, as midnight hit, they defeated her walls for a little while: 7 peanut butter cups. 613 of her precious calories down the drain.

She chuckled and reminded them that it would be a low-calorie day anyway, since she would sleep through most of it. A smoothie when she woke up, and then a small supper. Cursing at her, the fat cells crawled away in defeat and to plan another line of attack.

Wednesday, January 31, 2007

The trouble with fat

Shush...I know it's been 10 days since my last post. No excuses. I was sick for part of that, and the rest of that is becoming a short story for your entertainment.

Actually, it's to get it out of my system and hopefully get myself motivated again. :-)

Here it was, Thursday afternoon, and she's sitting in the doctor's office. If there's anything she dislikes more, she's hard-pressed to think of it right now. The annual poking, prodding and questions. Especially the questions, since it's a new doctor. At least she's nice, and not judgemental, like the last one was.

"Well, your sinuses are definitely swollen, so we'll put you on some antibiotics to help with that a little bit. Otherwise, it's just a cold, it will have to run its course. Not what you wanted to hear, right?" Dr. Lorves chuckles.

And with that, she went home to sleep. Again. It seemed like that was all she had been doing. She called in to work Tuesday for the first time, and would have to again for Friday night, since she can't get the antibiotics until Friday and needs to be on them for 24 hours before she can work.

Over the weekend, as the antibiotics took effect, she started to feel better. She worked Saturday and Sunday night, and then by Monday afternoon when she woke up, she felt a lot better. So she took the dog for a walk, after bundling up for the weather.

Tuesday morning she walked to the bus stop and back, and then added 2 blocks to make it an even mile. And then slept again for another couple of hours. Unusual, but perhaps still playing catch up from working nights.

Wednesday morning. Another walk. And then back to sleep for 4 hours this time. What on earth is going on?!

Thursday morning, another walk, another sleep for 4 hours. 12 hours of sleep?? What is going on??

She posts at her forum, and gets plenty of feedback: overdoing it after being ill, overdoing it period for just starting an exercise program again, need more vitamins, need less vitamins, drink more water, sleep at night etc etc. Some of which makes sense. Overdoing it after being ill and just plain overdoing it for a beginner, especially.

But, in her heart of hearts, she knows what it is. It's her body fat. She's been hearing it for the last few days. Complaints of not enough food, and too much exercise. Her fat is rebelling. And it's doing it the best way possible: fatiguing her. Making her sleep the day away so she doesn't exercise. So she wakes up craving high calorie food.

Sure enough, that's about all she's been eating. Of course, with the lack of funds, it is more difficult to eat healthy, and they're living off what they have in the house. But come payday, what happens?? She has her son pick up pizza burgers with a side of mozzarella sticks. Her fat cells laugh as they sense the imminent return of her bad habits.

The next night she walks to the restuarant with her son. A good start!! Surely she'll be able to order something reasonably healthy. Alas, the fat cells win again: all-meat pizza and she splits a side of mozzarella sticks and a side of cheeseballs with her son.

Working the weekend. Breakfast at Burger King. Breakfast from McDonalds and supper from McDonalds. Lunch from the cafeteria both days. Creamy pasta, rich desserts. Oh sure, she got the fruit cup and chocolate milk, but does that outweight the others? Oh no. And again, the fat begins to celebrate.

Monday, she's slept in again. She didn't walk her son to the bus stop. The fat cells rejoice. Tuesday, it's too cold by far, and she drives him to the bus stop. She wakes up a few hours later to find she missed part of the show she wanted to see, and then she gets mad.

"These fat cells have been sabatoging me!! I KNOW the effects they can have on my hormones and emotions, and dadgummit I WILL NOT LET THEM WIN!!" At that, the fat cells ears' perk up. Surely she doesn't mean it?

She walks to the computer and modifies her exercise goal. She cuts it in half, knowing that's for more attainable for her right now. She pulls up the healthy recipes her family loves, and makes a grocery list for the upcoming weekend. The fat cells begin to cringe. And then, she makes the final blows: she journals about what's been going on and what she plans to do about it. She re-connects with her accountability partner and puts it in writing there, too.

She goes to work feeling better. Yes, it's another night shift, so she has plenty of time to get her game plan squared away. She will sleep most of Wednesday, which is to be expected. But she knows that when she wakes up, her treadmill will be waiting. And she will begin a new relationship with it. She will take it slow and easy, so she doesn't push the new feelings away with feelings of guilt and failure from not meeting that unattainable goal. She will write down how she feels at the end of the workouts.

Most of all, she will NOT give up the war against the fat cells. She WILL prevail!!

The fat cells are laughing, thinking that it won't happen again. The fat cells have been down this road before, and have always won before.

Stay tuned.....

Sunday, January 21, 2007

I'm back!!

I do apologize, Constant Reader, for not posting lately. Monday night my nose started to tingle, and by Tuesday morning I had a full-blown sinus infection. Got to the doctor Thursday who put me on antibiotics and allergy meds for the sinus pressure. I'm back again, though!! :-)

I'm going to borrow today's post from SparkPeople, it's about imitation. Word of caution, there are 2 "cuss" words in my musings well after this quote.

Be worthy of imitation.

They say imitation is the greatest compliment, but are your actions worthy of imitation? We are all in some setting of leadership. Whether it be as a parent, boss, or friend we should constantly examine the example we are setting for those around us. Are you being a positive role model? Are you treating others in a dignified way? Be a cheerful and diligent worker, parent and boss to those around you. Children, especially, are like sponges taking in your every action and word -- they naturally want to be just like you. So be mindful of your word and deed, you never know who might be watching and silently learning what you are demonstrating.

Included in that was a second quote: You must be careful how you walk and where you go, for there are those following you who will set their feet where yours are set. ~~Robert E. Lee, Civil War General

I always chuckle when I remember a day I was doing some minor repairs on the front steps. This was at a mobile home we were renting, and my son was 7 at the time. I was pounding nails, and missed. Of course, I hit another nail, but the ones on your fingers aren't the ones you're supposed to hit!! LOL So I said "Oh shit!" My darling son said "No Mom, you mean shit on a shingle." Very serious he was, too. I never realized how often I had used that phrase until that day. It's one I still use now and then, but for the most part I try to watch my language. He's now 14, and still picks up on things. Much the same way I did when I was that age.

The nice thing is he's also picking up on "good" things. He's been watching me drinking/eating my strawberry smoothies, made with ground flax to help with feeling fuller longer. He has been hungry in school way before lunchtime, so at his request I ground flax for him, and he added it to his oatmeal. He was very happy with not being hungry again until lunchtime, and has even requested I show him how to make the smoothies.

We went through McDonalds this afternoon, and I suggested we both get a Happy Meal. I got a Hamburger Happy Meal, he got the Double Cheeseburger Big Kid's Meal (he is a growing teenager, after all!). Neither of us were hungry for about 3 hours afterwards, and we were both comfortably full after our Happy Meal. It makes it doubly happy, since we made a somewhat healthier choice by keeping the portions down. On the drive home, we discussed the nutritional information, and decided that next time, we will get the apple dippers and caramel sauce and chocolate milk instead of fries and soda. For me, that's about the same amount of calories, since I drink Diet Coke, but for him it's less. His main point: You get more food for the calories and it's healthier. Apples, fruit. OK, so the caramel sauce could be avoided, but I'm not that good!! :-) And the milk. Can't beat that.

He's watching me strength train and hit the treadmill or walk daily. As a result, he's requested to be able to strength train over the summer and he's waiting for it to warm up to ride bike again! (He already walks about 1/2 mile each morning, to the bus stop.) While he is in good shape, he's wanting to stay that way and improve his capabilities. Can't beat that. :-)

My husband is probably setting the best example of all, and the hardest. After 20 years (give or take) he is giving up smoking. I'm very proud of him, and while I know it will be a struggle, it will be a struggle that is well worth it!!

So, what example will you be setting for today?

Monday, January 15, 2007

Lacking motiviation/gumption today

Being defeated is often temporary, giving up makes it permanent.” ~~ Marilyn von Savant

Well, I'm not sure if it's because it's Monday, if it's still below zero out or what it is, but I have absolutely no motivation whatsoever. I was tempted to give up the ghost on today, but then I found the above quote at SparkPeople and so I'm going to run with it.

I woke up feeling OK, tired, but OK. My intent was to wake up at 5, do my 8MM, and then walk my son to the bus stop. Well, it was 12 below out, and so that killed the walk. (Thankfully, it died a quiet death, probably because it was frozen! LOL) I did do my 8MM later in the morning and then I rather crashed. What was tired became totally lethargic. I did do some laundry, and watched the workout videos I have, to see which ones I am currently capable of doing. (To see why, check out my SparkPage. Unfortunately, anything too strenuous is a little out of the question at the moment, but I'm working on that.)

About 2:00 PM, the Audrey Hepburn Story came on TV, and I began to watch that. Then I started some laundry, then I decided to look for some motivation. I found that quote, and here I am. Well, it's about 3 hours later. In that, I did the laundry, worked on a legwarmer I'm working on (hey, when it's 5 degrees out and you want to walk your dog, wool legwarmers are a GOOD thing!), and then about 4PM, on a commercial, I set my stopwatch and walked/boogied/shimmied/folded laundry/picked up trash during the commercial. I did that and then worked on my legwarmer again during the movie. For 3 commercials, I did that, and racked up 15 minutes of walking. I was able to talk, but not complete a sentence, so it was brisk walking, to boot.

I have a headache now, and I think the start of a sinus infection, but I no longer feel defeated. I feel very happy that I got up and moved, if only for 15 minutes. I'm going to keep it up for a little bit, even if it makes my husband laugh. He won't laugh a few weeks down the road when I need smaller clothes, and my BMI has gone down, and I've decreased my chances of a heart attack even by a little. And isn't that what this is all about? Getting healthier?


Sunday, January 14, 2007

Happy Sunday!!

I've been duly informed that I've been slacking on the blogger thing...yes, I have, and I'm sorry. Wednesday was just a day of "blah", Thursday I spent with my DH running errands, and Friday I worked. Yesterday I made it a movie day with my son (forgot he was grounded from TV, which made my DH mad, but oh well. :-) Life goes on.) So here I am today!!

My map is updated through yesterday, if you want to check it out.

I've done OK this week, better than I would have before, though. I typically walked at least once every day, except the day I worked. It's a 12 hour shift and I tend to just burn out and come home to recuperate. :-)

I did try something this week I want to share. I made a strawberry smoothie with 1 c. organic yogurt (Stoneyfield Farms, really good!!), 1/2 c. frozen whole strawberries and 1 tbsp. flax seed. It was really good, and kept me full for almost 4 hours, something virtually unheard of for me. Typically, flax seed needs to be ground, but blending everything in the blender took care of that. I'm going to try to add it to my oatmeal this week, but I have to get some ground, first! LOL

One of my "walks" was a Leslie Sansone Walk Away The Pounds, a basic 1-mile dvd. It came with her book, which I enjoyed reading. The nice thing is it's an easy "routine" to follow, unlike most aerobic workouts I'd tried in the past. I really do recommend the DVDs if you are beginning to exercise or just can't seem to go out in the cold to walk. (I'm currently making legwarmers for myself for that reason, I can keep everything but my lower legs warms, so that will take care of that AND make my dog happy!!)

I joined SparkPeople and have found it to be a wonderful support system, too. Today I'm going to pick a quote on Perception and reflect on it here.

“ Stop living life for what’s around the corner and start enjoying the walk down the street. ”
Grant L Miller, SP employee

How true that is, especially when losing weight or getting healthier or whatever it is you're trying to do. We as Americans are an "all or nothing" society in a lot of areas of life. Nowhere is this more true than weight loss. We tend to forget that this weight didn't just appear overnight, and so we assume we will lose it overnight. While I would be thrilled to bits to have an overnight loss, waking up a size 12 instead of 26, it just ain't gonna happen, folks!!

What I want to focus on is that walk down the street. I had a struggle with the WATP dvd. I did it, I completed it, but it was a struggle. This week, I hope to get through it every day, even on the day I work (Tuesday). I also want to walk with my son in the mornings to his bus stop, and get on track with my strength training. Instead of looking months down the road at what I will be like, I'm going to focus on this week. One week of walking (or a WATP dvd) every day, one week of walking my son to the bus stop (except the day I work, I leave too early for that) and one week of my 8MM each day, not saving them up to do one day. Next Sunday morning, I'm going to prepare for my weekly phone call with a list of positives and yes, a list of "negatives". But they won't be negatives, they will be areas to work on, challenges. Heck, anyone can work on their health for a week, right? :-)


Tuesday, January 09, 2007

One Hot Mama!!

Yep, that's me! First, though, I want to apologise for not posting for 3 days. I was out of town, spending the weekend with my in-laws for our Christmas. We had a great time, and I was thoroughly spoiled!! (As was my husband and son, of course!)

Now, back to that One Hot Mama. Today's "Task" from 8MM is to give yourself a positive title, and refer to yourself with that title, also to have your buddies refer to you as that title (hmmm....I'm trying to picture anyone BUT my husband calling me that! LOL). But it's positive reinforcement, and reminds yourself that you are what you think, and the best way to becoming healthier is to love yourself.

Well, my DH & I were still dating when that song came out, and instantly it became his song for me. He even had it set as a ringtone on his cell phone for when I called. Silly husband. :-) But you know what, it works for me!

So when you see me walking down the street, or biking along the highway or (hopefully someday!) canoeing in the lake, just say "Hey there, hot mama!!" :-)

More later!


Thursday, January 04, 2007

One more thing for today....

One more thing for today. On , I am roughly calculating my steps on my pedometer per day into miles and logging them on this map. If you want, take a gander and see how far I've walked. This is as of January 1st. As you can see, if you've peeked, I've got a lot of steps to add to my daily walks!! (10,000 steps is the recommendation, which is roughly 5 miles.)


Happy Thursday!!

As you can see, I pretty much slept through yesterday. That's one of the few downsides to my job, is when I work the night shift, there is one day where I am fairly useless. :-)

So yesterday's "task" from my 8MM book was to look at a future dream vacation, after I've attained my goal. My best friend (one of them!) lives in Norway, so believe it or not, that is my future dream vacation. Here we go...

As we step off the plane, we are amazed at the chill in the air. I knew we wouldn't be doing any swimming this early in the year, but I sure didn't expect to be cold! Thankfully, I know there's a stash of sweaters at her apartment, hand-knit, the best of the best. I grab my husband's hand and tell my son to hurry UP we need to get going. The brisk air feels good, and I'm so glad that we had a comfortable flight. Imagine, just a year and a half ago, I couldn't fit into an airplane seat very well, and now I have wiggle room!

At her apartment, we sit on the back porch, looking into the woods. It is so beautiful here, and so quiet. I have never seen greener trees, not even in the Black Hills. It must be the ocean air, it is definitely doing me wonders. Tomorrow we'll go to the ocean, and take a long walk. We plan on taking a combination train/boat/bus trip this week, too. It should be wonderful. I'm so glad we came here, and I think she can see it on my face.

Since I've never actually been to Norway yet, I had to go with what I have seen in pictures, and my words cannot do those pictures justice!! :-) That was yesterday's. Today's is that I am coming home from this vacation, and I bump into a friend on the plane who has not seen me after I reached my goal weight. Now, I have to admit, I may not be perfectly nice in this one, and it won't be a friend necessarily, but someone who has as much weight to lose as I do and came up with as many excuses as I did to not do it. Ultimately, we broke off the friendship due to a difference in opinions. While I do miss her, I will do some gloating, maybe...

Oh gosh, what a good vacation. I'm sure going to miss her, though. Next year she'll be back to the States to visit again, though. I can't wait. Gosh, this delay to Minneapolis is sure taking a long time. Finally, we're boarding!

As I walk down the tunnel, I see a familiar face talking to her child. Melanie? Gosh, I haven't seen her in almost 3 years. "Melanie? Melanie ********?" I see she's not sure who I am by the look on her face. "Heather. We used to work together?" Oh wow, I cannot believe the shock I'm seeing on her face. I know we parted on less than pleasant terms, but still.

"Oh my GOSH you look GREAT!! How DID you lose all that weight? Gosh, I wish I could, but you know, my thyroid and the antidepressants and 3 kids and work...." Ah yes, the same old excuses. I remember them well, although at the time it was only 2 children. "So, how did you do it? Where are you sitting? Neil? Neil? I'm going to sit next to her, OK?" Poor Neil, she hasn't changed much. The lady next to me is nice enough to switch, and I quick send my husband a text: If I put both hands behind my head and wave one, come tell me there's a problem with our son. Good thing we could keep the phones on until it's almost time to take-off.

As we settle into our seats, I buckle in easily, grateful that I can now. Melanie calls for a seat belt extension. I smile at my aunt as she brings it. One of the best parts of our vacation was that my last flight has my aunt as one of the flight attendants, and so we'll get to drive home with her as a guest. "So, tell me how you did it."

I have to smile a little bit. "Well, I get up at 5:00 each morning, do my strength training and then shower quick. My son and I each have oatmeal for breakfast, I like mine with chocolate chips and a bit of sugar. Good start to the day, and it really sticks. At 6:45 I take I him the bus stop, then drive down to Mitchell." "WHAT? Why? Is it that hard to find a good job you have to drive what is it, an hour?" "Well, 45 minutes, but I'm going to school full time down there. On my breaks between classes I work for an website editing company and do my homework. I get home about the same time my son does, so we take the dogs for a 45 minute walk. Although," I chuckle, "last winter we did more snowshoeing than walking! Then, while supper is cooking, I get our snacks ready for the next day. I finish up my homework while my son does his, and then I hit the yoga mat. Either yoga or t'ai chi, depending on how I feel. On weekends I work Friday and Saturday overnights at the hospital, and I get some walking and stretching in then, too."

"Wait a minute," she says. You work and go to school? I bet your husband does all the housework, then." I just have to smile. "No, I typically do a load or two of laundry a day, and vacuum just before I go to bed. My son does the dishes, my husband does the cooking. They sweep the hardwood floors upstairs and clean the bathroom once a week, also. We break it up as much as possible. We do a little everyday and maintain the house, rather than letting it build up. Sundays I sleep most of the day, but when I do wake up I get the bills ready to go out and work on the menu for the next week. I've found if it's done a week ahead of time, then on Thursday or Friday, depending on which one of us is getting paid, my husband and son will get the groceries and do the prep work. It's their thing, I guess, they seem to enjoy it."

I have to admit, I love her reaction. We used to commiserate together about not having time to workout or make healthy snacks. At the time, she was also in school, she wanted to be a nurse. I have no doubt she would make a good one, I wonder what happened? "Melanie, are you working as a nurse, now? Or do you have a year left, I can't remember?" The look on her face tells me all I need to know. "I couldn't finish. I couldn't study, especially after my third kid. I'll probably go back after they're in school. Then we can do our homework at the same time. At least, that's my current goal."

After that, the flight was quiet. I took a nap, I admit, dreaming of long summer walks. I'm not sure what happened to her after that, the original seatholder was back when I woke up, and when we got off the plane she didn't look at me once. I hope she makes it as a nurse, I really do.

Wednesday, January 03, 2007

Hello darlin', it's been a long time...

Isn't that an old Johnny Cash song...? Ah well. Not really apropros, since I just posted last night, but it's kind of how I'm feeling.

Today's daily task in the 8MM book was picturing myself on New Year's Eve after reaching my goal weight. What I wear, how I feel, what band is playing at a grand, Cinderella-type ball, what songs.

For a Cinderella-type ball, I would probably wear something similar to my wedding dress. Strapless, ivory, full skirt, very "Old World Princess" style, with ballet flats. Heck, if I'm going to dance into a New Year, my feet will be happier in flats than heels!! :-) The band I would hope would be something symphonic/classical orchestra. I've always wanted to dance like they do in the movies set in the 1600's. A ball in the Queen's court. :-) Hopefully I'll have a male friend who enjoys the same, I just can't quite picture my husband dancing like that!! :-) He might, though, if we took lessons. My hair is short, with flips on the ends, and so I will have minimal hair accessories. Perhaps just a headband, or some sparkly bobby-pins. Just enough to catch the eyes of the nay-sayers who can't believe it's actually me out there looking that good. (And modest too! LOL)

Another book I'm using is Leslie Sansone's Walk Away the Pounds. It even came with a walking DVD, and it's easy enough for me to follow. ;-) One of her daily journaling items is to name a beautiful thing. Well, riding home from work yesterday morning, I happened to look up and saw the prettiest sight. The entire sky was cloud-covered, the sun was just barely peeking up. In the north-west sky, it was a blue-grey, very pretty. And in this one spot there was an opening, sort of. It was like a hole in the clouds, with a wide band across it, and underneath or behind this band was this beautiful ivory/cream light. It was actually the moonlight, and I know that words will never do it the justice it deserves. It was so gorgeous.

I've started wearing a pedometer, and got a nice one from the hospital, as part of their Well One program ( I just found something out, though. If you accidentally touch the reset button, a light touch is all that's needed to reset it!! I was trying to see where I was at for the day, but....darnit!! LOL I have another one that I may switch to, so I don't do that again! :-)

I am a little disheartened. My mp4 player died last night. I will be sending it back for a refund, and look at getting a better one later on. It's nice, because it plays movies, so I can take T'ai Chi workouts with me, and walking playlists, and listen to podcasts. Ah well. I got spoiled, but I can live without for awhile. :-) Audiobooks on the treadmill again!! :-)

I hope all is well with you, Constant Readers!!


Tuesday, January 02, 2007

Happy New Years!!

OK, so I'm kind of a day late, but still. It's 4:30 AM on the 2nd, most people are still sleeping, so I should be able to squeak this in, yes? :-)

If you're one of my Constant Readers (thank you, Stephen King, for that phrase), you know that my goal is to get in better shape this year. Part of that goal will be achieved by using Jorge Cruise's 8 Minutes in the Morning for Real People book. In that book is daily tasks, and I think I will post those here, depending on the subject. So let's start with Week 1, Day 1. :-) This is a visualization, of my 1st birthday party (and it's a surprise party) after achieving my goal weight.

I walk into the house, wondering where my family is. Odd that they are not at home at 7PM on a weeknight. As I hang up my keys and put my purse away, I see a note on the table: Meet us at the Community Center when you get home. What on earth? Well, it is Tuesday night, and I usually walk laps there, so maybe they've decided to join me, what a treat! I can show off my new workout clothes to the neighbors, if they're walking, too. I picked up a very cute pair of capri pants, loose enough to be comfortable, but tight enough to look good enough for work. I matched the light blue with a tanktop that is off-white with light blue stripes, so I put on my walking shoes and headed over to the community center. Sure does look like a lot of people are walking today, I've never seen the parking lot so full. Hmm, and someone visiting from MN, by the looks of the license plates.

Wow, the lights are off. What on earth is going on here?? Well, the door is open, so I'll go in. I didn't notice the lights off at home, I wonder if there's a power outage? Well, someone will have flashlights, we can still walk for awhile. YIKES! The lights just came on and oh WOW! My Dad, brother, sister in law, nephew, my sister and brother in law and neice, my mother in law, my aunts and cousins and even a couple of uncles!! All here for a surprise party, how cool!! And I think they're just as surprised at me as I am at them. I hadn't told anyone I was losing weight, and the looks on their faces make it worth it! Look, there's Grandma, and she has this huge smile on her face as she tells me how wonderful I look. She's always one to compliment me on my complexion, and today is no different. But today, I'm glowing, she says. Who wouldn't be, with this wonderful show of support! After not seeing me for almost 18 months, they are seeing me now as I looked in high school, almost. I've shed an entire person's worth of weight since Christmas 2006, and I feel so much better. And by the looks of it, I look healthier and better, too. What a wonderful surprise party!! Looks like angel food cake with strawberries and low-cal/fat whipped cream, yummy!! My husband will get his just desserts later, for planning such a wonderful surprise. ;-)

You read that correctly, I have an entire person's worth of weight to lose. I literally weigh twice as much as my healthy weight, and it's time to shed that extra person. Here's to tomorrow's post, thanks for stopping by!