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 stickK.com 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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Tuesday Thanksgivings #21

(Yes, I realize I’m late.  Get used to it. :) )

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: Being able to sleep in.  I don’t have children and forgive me, I’m truly thankful for that sometimes.

Thursday:  I had the whole week off, so I was able to go have lunch with my husband on Thursday and Friday, which I have never been able to do before because we both work M-F and I don’t get a lunch during my shift.  It was so. nice.  Oh, and I also was able to put my cake decorating skillz to good use today, teaching a few ladies at Cero’s Candy some basic cake decorating techniques so they could decorate panoramic eggs for Easter.  Truthfully, though, I was more thankful for the chocolate I was given as payment (oh yes, I will totally work for handcrafted chocolates), than the opportunity to help them out.  Just keepin’ it real.

Friday: Had time to make a cake and cupcakes (I’m still giving free cakes to the bride whose wedding cake I destroyed) during the day so that I didn’t have to do it when Dennis got home.  We covet our Friday nights as it’s the only night we don’t sit in front of our computers like zombies and instead, sit in front of the TV.  Snuggled up, of course. :)

Saturday: Eating real food.  At home.  It has become a rarity, which is one of the reasons for my recent weight gain.

Sunday: Sister Cynthia, who always tells me I look “so pretty,” and means it.  I haven’t been feeling pretty since I’ve regained 15 pounds but I knew she still thought I was and that felt really nice.

We got this cool black one!

Monday: Remember the tip I got from my last cake that I saved toward a Kitchenaid? Well, I had to spend some of it to take our trip to Texas, and ended up spending the rest on a Wii (my brother-in-law sold us his at a discount)!  Although I still would like a Kitchenaid stand mixer, I do believe the trip and the Wii were better choices.  I’m so thankful for the opportunity to own a Wii because I’ve longed for one ever since I heard about Wii Fit, which is next on my list of purchases.  I did boxing, bowling, archery, and played a Star Wars game with Dennis and I was so sore I didn’t recover for three days! I can only imagine how much of a workout I’ll get once my entire body is involved and not just  my arms!

Tuesday: That I was able to help raise money for Japan by donating vegan Cinnabon caramel corn to an online bake sale.  The bake sale was last week but I didn’t get the winner’s shipping address until today and it gave the crummy day a silver lining to prepare the caramel corn for her and be reminded that through doing something I love ( eating caramel corn making sweet treats), I was able to help.  The winning bidder paid $75 for that caramel corn, which isn’t as impressive as the $500 someone paid for raw macaroons, but still a pretty big deal!

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Fear & Self-Sabotage

For the past five weeks, I have paid $5 to charity every Friday after having to report a weight gain on stickK.com, the website I signed up with in hopes that having to pay if I didn’t lose weight might motivate me to stay on track.  Funny thing is, I’ve gone more off track since then than I have all year.

I think part of it has to with getting comfortable.  I lost some of the fear of reporting to my readers that I’d not succeeded.  In fact, I stopped reporting at all!!  I was also getting comfortable with my weight and not feeling as much inward pressure to lose more because I no longer repulsed myself, even if I was still technically overweight.  The other part was fear.  Fear of succeeding and actually meeting my weight loss goal.

Ever since I signed up with sticK.com, agreeing to lose 1 pound a week until I hit my goal weight in June, this strange fear has been nagging at me.  I just could not, and to some degree still can’t, figure out why this scares me.  In the past, fear that others would not love me any more, or in fact start to dislike me if I was at my ideal weight, has kept me from losing the amount of weight I need to.  It is irrational, but that fear exists even now, although to a lesser degree.  It is not insurmountable as I know there are very few who would react this way, and even so, I think my health is more important than people who like me only as long as I don’t succeed.

The other fear is one I’ve always worried about but never fully recognized as a potential source of self-sabotage until now.  I often think about what my “food life” will be like once I achieve my ideal weight, i.e. the weight that I’m healthiest and feel best at.  I love to eat (this might be a problem in and of itself, lol!) and I seriously can almost not bear to think that in order to attain the weight I’d like to achieve (130 pounds), I’d have to exist on 1,200 calories a day for the rest of my life.  I know Hungry Girl,  Lisa Lillian, does it, but her recipes are filled with so much of what I deem non-food (Fiber 1 cereal, fat-free everything, tofu shirataki noodles, etc.) that it slightly repulses me.  A co-worker that had to lose weight after having heart surgery got down to her ideal weight and I want to cry thinking that I’ll have to eat like her to stay thin.  She eats half a sandwich and a handful of grapes at lunch.  When she talks about eating a “huge” meal, it’s a baked potato topped with vegetables.  Diet food.  :(  Part of the reason I think I self-sabotage each time I get close to my ideal weight (4 times in the last ten years) is that I’d almost rather be fat than have to eat like these people for the rest of my life.

But really, if eating 1,200 calories a day for the rest of my life (which might not even be necessary) means I’ll live a longer, healthier, & happier life, I have to admit that it would be worth it.  I have been eating 3,000 calories a day for almost a month and I can tell you, the way I feel is no way to live.  I can’t enjoy things fully because the food I’m eating makes me feel too full and practically sick because it’s fattening and has little nutrition.  I’ve regained 15 pounds that I worked long and hard to lose and that is discouraging.

I also realize there is no point in worrying about what life will be like after achieving my goal when I’ve never gotten to the point where I’m living it.  I have no idea how much I’ll be eating when I’m at 130 pounds because I haven’t seen that weight in ten years.  And perhaps when I’m at my goal weight and do discover I have to keep my calories that low, it might not be as hard as my dramatic mind keeps imagining.

I think I’ve made a mistake by thinking too far into the future, at least in this particular area.  I need to take one step at a time and deal with whatever I find at each step as I come to it, because I don’t want to let fear rule my actions and keep me repeating this self-sabotaging behavior of regaining weight after I’ve worked hard to lose it.  Looking forward to five pounds lost at a time seems more approachable so I’m going to try to focus on that goal instead.

Perhaps I will discover that I feel healthiest and happiest at a weight higher or lower than 130 lbs.  Perhaps I will find that I can maintain my weight while eating 2,000 calories a day (my dream, lol) as long as I get a good workout in on most days.  Or perhaps I will find that I have to stick to 1,200 a day, but can do it without feeling deprived, and my little sandwich and handful of grapes makes me happy.  Who knows what will happen until it happens?  But I will never know if I don’t first make it happen.

So I’ve decided to join Weight Watchers again for the third time.  I’ve had good results in the past and feel I need something right now to help get myself back into the weight-loss mode.  I really hate to fork over $40 a month since I’m such a tight wad, but I’m paying half that right now through stickK.com just because I’m gaining weight.  I’d much rather pay to lose than pay to gain.  :)

Have you ever been afraid to succeed?

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Tuesday Thanksgivings #20

I made a thanksgiving resolution to find something to be thankful for every day until next Thanksgiving.  I have a lot to be thankful for this week!

Wednesday: I have job security for another six months! I know that sounds funny, but it is actually good news. I have been a transitional/temporary employee with the USPS REC for 7 years now, but they keep rehiring me at the end of my contracts with them.  It is very hard, and now impossible, to get a permanent position there since The REC was established to be a temporary fix until the scanners could read all the mail and human data entry was no longer necessary.  But it is a great job that I enjoy and I count my lucky stars each time I get another “tour” with them (they use military terms sometimes, and their time is semi-military too using 24 hours but doing the minutes in 100ths instead of diving the hours into 60.  Don’t know why!), as I did today.

Thursday: I sometimes dislike going into work so late (11:45 AM) because it means I get off quite late, but I got off early today and while driving in rush-hour traffic, was thankful that at least my late schedule keeps me from dealing with it on a daily basis!  I really hate driving in heavy traffic–stresses me out.

Friday: Our friend, Donna, who keeps Jessie for us when we’re out of town.  She came and picked up Jessie tonight on her way home from work, and we had peace of mind knowing she’d be well taken care of while we were out of town.

Donna with Jessie & Doc at his birthday party (Doc is Donna's dog and Jessie's best friend).

Saturday: Having a rental car to make the 10 hour (which for us with small bladders & trouble with directions turned into 12 hours) drive to The Woodlands, TX.  My car is pretty crisp (my sister uses “crisp” as a generic derogatory term (“this music is crisp,” “I have crispy thighs.” LOL!) and it rubbed off on me over the weekend) and I know we would have been so miserable driving that far in the jalopy.

I made a short video of the things we (I) did to entertain ourselves (myself) during the drive.  See if you can hear Dani use the word “crisp” in the way I referenced.  She’s so funny!

Sunday & Monday: the opportunity to spend quality time with dear friends who moved away almost five years ago! I made a slideshow of pics I took during our visit.

On Sunday we worshiped in their home and Dennis gave a lesson on the proofs of the resurrection.  My memory ran out before he got to the bulk of the lesson, but I got a 20-minute chunk of it and you can click here to see his outline and notes.  It was his first “sermon” and I think he did really well!

While there I made apple pies, we dined at Wuensche Brothers in old town and did a little shopping in the area, went to the marsh by their house and fed turtles, visited Market Street (the closest thing I’ve ever seen to something like Rodeo Drive) and took a trolley ride around, ate amazing meals that Jax (Jaci) prepared for us, played Scategories after the kids were in bed both nights and had way too much fun with it, and went to the park and again had way too much fun (I don’t wanna grow up, I’m a Toys ‘R Us kid!).

Until this vacation, I would have said our stay at Kanopolis Lake was the best I’d ever taken.  And it still is, but this one is also the best in a completely different way.  Lake Kanopolis was isolated and peaceful and gorgeous and it was hugely relaxing to be out in nature with no schedule whatsoever.  This one was the best because I was with people I love and had the opportunity to socialize.  I keep forgetting how important this is as I have hermit tendencies and frequently convince myself that I’d prefer to spend day and night by myself without seeing or speaking to anyone else besides my dog (yes, I talk to my dog) and husband.  I’m perfectly content to do so, but when I force myself out I usually enjoy it.  In this case, I was astounded how much fun I had.  And we weren’t even doing super-exciting things.  The fun was in the banter and chit-chat.  The fun was in the time with friends and I’m so thankful we finally were able to visit them.  Although it does make me miss them more keenly now!

Tuesday: To be able to hold and pet my itty bitty sweetie, as I call her, once again.

If it weren’t for her, I don’t think I would be that happy to be home!  It’s hard leaving friends behind but I’m thankful for the time I had with them.

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Tuesday Thanksgivings #19

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: mechanical pencils.  I use them exclusively, except when I’m writing checks and signing cards.  I believe in the power of erasing (I make lots of mistakes), and the power of not needing a pencil sharpener.

Thursday: That my husband got his old position back where he sits at a desk that has a direct phone number so I can call him whenever I want just to say “hi.”  I don’t know if he’s thankful to have me bothering him every chance I get, but I adore it. I think it actually lowers my blood pressure to hear him answer, “Quality, this is Dennis.” *sigh*

Friday: to Bill Clinton for establishing the family medical leave act, which allows me to call into work when I can’t make it in or need to come in late due to diabetes complications (usually low blood sugar) without fear of reprisal.  With the way the REC operates (you can potentially lose your job just for skipping a break or taking breaks one minute late or early), I bet I’d have been fired by now if I wasn’t protected by it.

Saturday: Although I would prefer to be thankful to be the proud winner of the weight loss competition with my co-workers (I wasn’t), instead I had to find something else and it wasn’t hard to do since I had a bunch of friends over that I haven’t seen in a while.  And I really am happy for Erika, who lost 18 pounds and 12 inches to win the competition!  She earned that money!

Erika and her prize money. We also had a surprise mini-shower for a co-worker's wife, thus the baby gifts on the table.

Sunday: That my house is clean.  Wow. This is amazing.

Monday: No work! I got to DGT again. :)

Tuesday: My house is still clean.  This is a miracle.

Side note: I know I missed my last weigh-in (or two) but I will update what is going on in the weight loss (or gain) department soon. It isn’t pretty but I’m not a lost cause.  No matter how bad it gets, it’s never too late to turn around and make some changes!  I am headed to Texas on Saturday for four days to visit friends (so excited!), so I will be back next week to fill y’all in. XOXO

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