The end

That’s right, this is the end! Going Down is, well, going down.  I’ve made my food blog into a more all-encompassing blog and plan to share my weight loss adventures there from now on.  (Probably much less often, as it will continue to be mainly food-focused.)  If you care to follow me there, you can click here.

Thank you so much to all my readers who have encouraged me and given me the accountability I so needed.  You really were an inspiration to me and I thank  you from the bottom of my heart!  I hope to see you around Veronica’s Cornucopia soon.



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Wordless Weight Watchers Weigh-in Wednesday (or…WWWWW! bwahahahaha)

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Tuesday Thanksgivings #26

I made a thanksgiving resolution to find something to be thankful for every day until next Thanksgiving.  Here’s what I am thankful for this week!

Wednesday:  Thank you God, for helping me do a much better job teaching my toddler Bible class!  Still much room for improvement, but compared to the first week it was 100% better.  Now if you would please guide me in working with an adorable but increasingly stubborn toddler newly embarking on the terrible two’s without much pain on either end, I’d greatly appreciate it.

Thursday: non-dairy milk substitutes. I’m not allergic to dairy, but I like the substitutes a lot more than the real stuff, plus I feel better about my impact on the cows and the earth when I drink it.  My favorite right now is Silk’s original coconut milk beverage, and any brand of almond milk is my second pick.

Friday: That my hubby and I work close enough to one another that we can drive to a restaurant nearby to have dinner together if we so choose.  We prefer to meet at home and drive together, but N & J Cafe is so close to our work places that we like to meet there on Friday night once in a while.

Saturday: This strange new thing going on with me that is making me not want to overeat.  (Usually when I eat I have to try really hard not to–I have a weird compulsion to always eat too much.)  I’ve never had this feeling before but I hope it’s here to stay!  This is the first year I can ever recall the approaching summer having any effect on my appetite, but it’s diminished a lot.  When it’s been warmer, I feel like it’s too hot to eat and I don’t get very hungry.  Even on these cooler days we’ve been having, the longer brighter days seem to keep me from wanting to plow through pies and candy.  It’s strange for me, but I like it!

Sunday: Fellowship with Christian brethren. A gospel meeting started at our church today and Joe and Marissa hosted a potluck lunch at their house after the morning service.  It was a joyful day!

Monday: As I grow older, I become increasingly convinced that I would be happiest living in the country, but one thing that I’m thankful for while living in a moderately-sized city is the convenience of everything.  We didn’t have time to get our grocery shopping done on the weekend, but there is a grocery store just a minute’s drive away from our home, allowing us to pick up a few things after the gospel meeting tonight. I’m also thankful for those water refill stations where you can fill up your jugs on the cheap.  I’m so spoiled to purified water and I feel better buying it this way since we just reuse and reuse our 5-gallon jugs (still have the original two we bought 5 years ago!) instead of buying plastic gallons or small bottles that we throw away.

Tuesday: For NOT getting stuck in traffic due to an accident. Or being in an accident.  LOL, is it weird to be thankful that something didn’t happen to you?  Well, I had to take a detour on my way home because the ramp to Kellogg was closed due to an accident and as I passed it, I saw a long line of cars stuck because they were behind the accident.  I bet they were there for at least an hour!  I think I would have got out of my car and walked home–I have no patience for waiting in traffic, let alone being completely stuck!

I took these pics after I passed under the ramp and turned around to get back on from the other direction, so you can’t see how many cars were backed up.  Maybe not so wise to take pics while driving?  Perhaps that’s why there was an accident on the ramp! Doh!

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I got my first sticker!

I had two picnics on Mother’s Day, but I still thought I would have a good loss this week since I did well the other days.  I only lost .2 lbs, but it’s still something.  I got my first 5 lb. sticker today!  Here’s to many  more.

And just because I’m cuh-razy:

thems crazy eyes!

Who else do you know who can cross just one eye?! I didn't know I could until I saw this pic--it wigs me out! That's "uhmayzin,'" as my sister would say.

In other news, Dennis will be mowing the weeds soon but the upside down wheelbarrow is there to stay.  It kinda likes its spot.

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Tuesday Thanksgivings #25

I made a thanksgiving resolution to find something to be thankful for every day until next Thanksgiving.  Here’s what I am thankful for this week!

Wednesday: The opportunity to improve myself through teaching.  I am probably the world’s worst teacher (another reason it might be best we don’t have children) but I’m now working on my skillz with the poor guinea pigs in the toddler Bible class on Wednesday nights.  They are so cute!

Thursday: that my husband is stronger than I thought.  He competed in the King of the Blues contest tonight and I was so stressed out because, while he’s a pretty good guitarist, he’s just not a “king” at it, and I was soooo worried that this competition would rob him of his confidence and kill his motivation and joy.  Thank God I was wrong!  He’s so cute, he had to go first and he messed his solo up pretty bad but it didn’t get him down at all.  He wasn’t dispirited after the only other guy competing totally whipped his butt with his solo.  Didn’t bother him in the slightest!  What I usually take for an incredible ego in him is actually just confidence and an indifference to comparing himself with others.  He doesn’t care that he’s not the best, he just wanted to try and it doesn’t matter to him that he sucked in comparison to the other dude.  Especially since there are two finalists from each night so he won by default!  He made his goal.  If Dennis had a theme song, I think it would be that little ditty at the end of The Life of Brian, “Always Look On The Bright Side of Life.”

Friday: Actors. Thank you for entertaining us!

Saturday: Sliders.  I love those mini burgers! How can you beat two for the price (calories) of one? :)

Sunday: Family.  You can’t pick them, so I’m glad I got stuck with mine. Most of the time. :)  And that includes my mothers, of course.  There are always exceptions to every rule, but in general I see mothers as one of the most amazing things on Earth.  If I ever feel overwhelmed, all I have to do is think of mothers and all they do every day to remind myself that I have it pretty easy.  You guys are incredible.

Monday: Checkmarks.  I was able to put a lot of them on my to-do list, which doesn’t happen often!

Tuesday: Henna.  Chemical-free, plant derived hair dye that conditions your hair and adds natural shine? Love.

Before henna. Ew to the grays, ew to the face.

After light brown Rocky Mountain Naturals henna. Much better--but I'm needing another haircut!

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Wordless Weigh-In Wednesday (WWW!) :)

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Tuesday Thanksgivings #24

I made a thanksgiving resolution to find something to be thankful for every day until next Thanksgiving.  Here’s what I am thankful for this week!

Wednesday: That I feel so much better!  My fever broke in the night and my sore throat disappeared as well.  AND we gained ANOTHER member in our church!

Thursday: I overcame the square cake! Oh, I hate frosting square cakes.  Whoever invented the idea of a square cake should be shot!  But I managed to get the corners pretty straight and the tops pretty flat after hours of hard frosting labor.  Take that, evil square cake!

That heart topper is a sparkler!

Friday:  that my cousin found himself a good woman.  I seriously feel closer to Racine than most of my blood relatives!  I’m so thankful that my cousin has her, and that she has him, and I happily celebrated their 5th anniversary with them today.  I was also thankful to have the chance to see some of my family at the party and just chit chat.  I don’t do that enough.

Since their anniversary was the same day as the royal wedding, we were supposed to wear tiaras. All I had was a Little Mermaid one! lol

Saturday: I met a friend for lunch, despite nearly talking myself into canceling many times.  I’m so glad I overcame my hermit tendencies to spend time with her, because we had a wonderful time and feel my love for Stacey renewed and our bond deepened.  Funny how a little face time does that. LOL!

Sunday: Rotisserie chicken, hot from the supermarket.  Easiest meal ever!

Monday: 5 words: “I’m on my way home.” I love getting that call every evening! :)

Tuesday: an easier way to make cake pops! I started making cupcake bites (54 tonight, more over the weekend), which is just cake balls made in Reese’s candy molds (pour chocolate in mold, drop in balls, pop out and dip tops–that easy!).  Cake pops are yumtastic, but cupcake bites are the best because not only are they cute, they are easier to make!

Aren't these just adorable??

I always use whatever frosting I have on hand to make the cake balls, this time it was ganache. The centers are a perfect combination of cake and truffle!

I made the above cupcake bites with the extra cake (I cut the tops off my cakes to level them) from the anniversary cake and served them at the party–they went like lightning.  The ones I made tonight are for Mother’s Day.  We’re going to Salina for the annual backyard potluck with Den’s extended family and then we’re going to have a barbecue with my family later in the day when we return.  I’m going to give baggies of the cupcake bites to the mothers.  Do you have any Mother’s Day plans?

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Weigh-In Wednesday

It’s about time I gave a report on the goings-on in the weight-loss/weight gain department!

Like I mentioned in previous blogs, I recently re-started Weight Watchers.  Third time’s a charm, right? I hope so!  I’d love to make my goal weight this time to become a lifetime member, and attend weekly meetings for FREE!

I did great the first week but relapsed during the Easter holiday, eating way too much and not tracking.   Here’s the scoop:

So it’s back to tracking for this old girl!  That has always been my most successful action and I have to keep it in.  That is my goal for the week!  Track everything!!

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Tuesday Thanksgivings #23

I’m kicking butt with this being on time thing.  Not only am I doing my Thanksgivings blog on the right day this week, I’ve been on time every day to work and was even one hour early today…albeit accidentally. :)

I made a thanksgiving resolution to find something to be thankful for every day until next Thanksgiving.  Here’s what I am thankful for this week!

Wednesday:  I lost 4.4 pounds my first week on Weight Watchers!

Thursday: I was able to use up the rest of my lemon curd before it went bad. (I made these for Easter.) Supposedly homemade lemon curd only lasts a few weeks in the fridge…but mine was still good after five months!

Friday: I’m always thankful for the same thing every Friday: that it’s FRIDAY! LOL!

Saturday: That my husband doesn’t mind being the designated driver when we travel.  I dislike driving, but love being a passenger so that I can write in my journal.  It’s the only time I ever do it because there’s always other things to do when I’m at home.  I’ve also started reading out loud to Dennis in the car when we’re driving for more than 15 minutes at a time, and we were able to finish Moon Over Manifest together (wow, I really highly recommend this one.  It’s a tween book but a really excellent read–it got the Newberry Medal for children’s literature) during our trip to Abilene to spend the holiday with his family.

Sunday:  Although the origins of Easter have nothing to do with Christ rising from the grave, and it seems arbitrary to acknowledge it on this day above all others when there is no Biblical precedent for it, it is also impossible to ignore the world’s focus on Christ’s resurrection on Easter and not be affected by it as well.  His sacrifice is what I remember most and try to keep in mind every day, but without His resurrection, that sacrifice would have meant nothing and my faith would not have a grounds for basis.  So today, as with most days, I’m thankful for Christ’s sacrifice and resurrection because it gives me hope of a life after this one.  I can’t wait to meet Him…but I’m also not going to rush things. LOL!  AND of course I was also so thankful to spend Easter with Dennis’ family.  I am blessed in the in-laws department, that’s for sure!

Monday: My good health!  I got a sore throat today and it reminded me how seldom I get sick.

Tuesday: My sore throat turned into a bigger sore throat, accompanied by a runny nose, fever, backache, and a general feeling of  “just kill me now.”  No, I’m not exactly thankful for that.  What I’m thankful for is that I don’t have vertigo!  I’m making an anniversary cake for my cousin and I’d much rather be sick than have vertigo, which I went through while making my first paid-for cake.  (I am so crazy I took a video during that time, which you can see here–it is the most pathetic thing you’ve ever seen and I feel even more thankful for this cold or whatever it is after watching that again.) Although I don’t feel like getting out of bed to do anything, at least my ability to make and decorate cake isn’t compromised by the feeling that I’m constantly falling.  I’d jump and give a “wahoo!” but I hope you forgive me for passing this time. :)

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Tuesday Thanksgivings #22

Late again.  I may as well start calling these Thursday Thanksgivings.

I made a thanksgiving resolution to find something to be thankful for every day until next Thanksgiving.  Here’s what I’m thankful for this week!

Wednesday: to start the Weight Watchers program again (third time’s a charm, right?)! In some sort of weird rebellious move, I wore one of my “real girls eat cake” t-shirts to the meeting.  The leader read it out loud, then added “and count the points!”  I love Marsha–she was my leader the first time and I’m glad to have her again.

Thursday: That I didn’t throw away all my fat pants!  I got rid of the biggest sizes but kept a few size 12’s, which have come in handy after regaining 15 lbs.  I hope I never have a relapse this bad again because I’m not going to keep them around after I shrink out of them this time.

Friday: I was able to report a loss on after 5 weeks of reporting weight gains. Hallelujah! I’m running behind on my weight report but should have it posted tomorrow before I leave town for the weekend.

Saturday: I was really a toot about it, but my sister talked me into opening her shop and running it until 2 PM because she had another commitment.  I usually refuse to work on my days off and I can’t say I was gracious about helping her out, but I was quite surprised by how much I enjoyed it.  I haven’t worked in her shop since she first opened it three years ago so I was awkward with the customers at first but after a while I began chatting them up and having a really good time.  I told Danielle I wasn’t going to make smoothies, only half-joking, but when a family ordered one for everyone, I did it and I didn’t hate it.  I actually had a lot of fun joking with the Dad while I made them.  When my replacement finally came nearly an hour late, I almost didn’t want to leave.  Once again, forcing myself to be social has proven to me how important it is not to live such a secluded life.  And yet that’s all I ever want! And if you’re wondering what exactly I was thankful for out of this whole thing (there is a difference between having a good time and being thankful), it was for the money.  Yes, I totally let my sister pay me for working for her.  Am I a great sister or what? >:) devil

I took this video tour while I was there so I could show everyone that doesn’t live close what her shop is like.  It’s much more impressive (and overwhelming b/c of the sheer amount of things) in real-life but you get a general idea.

Sunday: We gained another member at our Church, which has been happening a lot lately!  We have grown from a small group that used to join in a home to 40+ members with new visitors weekly.  We have almost outgrown the small building we are in (we are actually in a strip mall) and are looking for a larger one to purchase before we bust out the seams.  What a wonderful problem to have!  It is so encouraging to see that there are so many who are thirsting for the truth found in God’s word and wish to follow Jesus.  (If you are local and would like to visit, let me know!)  I was also thankful today to spend some time with my sisters, my nephew, and my brother-in-law.  We all met up at the Renaissance Festival and I was surprised at how much fun it was!

Another video!  I put this one together from footage and photos I took at the festival.

Before: Coco-nutty truffles. Pretty but way too dry (I messed up the recipe).

Monday: I was able to salvage a cookie dough ball fail and turn it into something gift-worthy for a co-worker.  He doesn’t have to know that his coconut, almond, and chocolate chip dough balls used to look much different and sat in our fridge for a week (don’t worry, they contained nothing that goes bad quickly, mostly nuts & dates) before I deconstructed them and ground them up again and added more dates & liquid.  I am the Queen of not wasting!  The original recipe can be found here.

After: Coconut-Almond Chocolate Chip Cookie Dough Balls that DH approved.

Tuesday: I’ve been praying to God for help with being a better employee and the help I got today was completely unexpected and caught me off guard.  My Dad’s stroke in 2008 changed something in me…the best way to describe it is that it took away some of my joy (but not my capacity to feel joy).  I stopped caring about my appearance, don’t shower every day any more, stopped decorating for the holidays or even buying gifts for my family, and started showing up late to work instead of 15 minutes early.  I’m working on recovering these things I lost because it’s ridiculous that I should still be hampered more than two years after the stroke.  (I just had a revelation, wondering if maybe I’m stunting myself because my Dad has been stunted by his stroke.  I wouldn’t put it past my weird self to do something like that unconsciously.  When he was in the hospital and the first weeks he was home, I didn’t eat sweets and cut back on my meals because it didn’t feel right to enjoy food, and I actually couldn’t enjoy it, when my Dad was suffering.)  But there’s no reason why I should still be like this since Dad is basically OK now and the care I give him is routine and I don’t consider it a hassle.

Anyway, my lateness is the one weakness I have as an employee, and it bothers me because although I’ve never gotten in trouble for being late, I don’t feel that showing up late accurately represents the way I feel about the job.  To me, it’s a sign of disrespect and gives the impression that I take the job for granted when in fact I feel incredibly lucky to have it.

So, like I was saying, the help God sent me was so not what I was expecting.  I was expecting Him to help my own urge to get to work on time grow strong enough to actually accomplish it.  Instead, a co-worker totally slapped my hands with a ruler!  Not literally, but that’s what it felt like.  I mentioned to her on Facebook that I’d been late the last two days, just after resolving to get to work on time, and instead of her giving me some sugar-coated encouragement, I got this response:

“If I can manage (daily) to drag my butt out of bed on 5-6 hours of sleep and arrive at work well before my shift starts at 7:30AM your 11:45 should be a breeze.  We’re all very lucky to have jobs, and too many people are slackers in that place on a minute-to-minute basis. Yes, I’m trying to make you feel guilty on purpose and you knoooow I’m right. Get yo act together, woman! Excuses are lame and you’re above that.”

Ouch.  And I totally deserved it because she’s right.  I’m not a slacker but just by mentioning I was late made her think I was and that is not how I want to represent myself.  I’m a good worker and I want to make sure I keep this job so I do need to make sure I’m on time every day.  Having her reply in such a non-coddling way really jolted me out of my comfort zone and I can tell you, I’ve been ON TIME Wednesday and Thursday and plan to never be late again!!

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