Friday, March 29, 2013

Brilliant Idea

I decided to create a readily available system with which to grab my mini-meals through the day.  Cheese sticks, carrot sticks, and celery sticks ... all within reach and ready to go!  YAY me!!

This was a COMPLETELY healthy grocery trip.  No junk food anywhere in that  haul.  

Struggling to Bloom

Whilst on my 1.88 mile walk this morning (how do you like that for some accuracy?), I was struck by the noise amid the silence.

What, you say?  

I know.  It's a delicate contradiction that I speak of, but it's true.  My neighborhood/subdivision was so quiet save for the constant noise of nature.  There were birds chirping.  There was a soft breeze playing against trees valiantly trying to bring bursting buds forth ... oh sure, there was the frequent traffic sounds ... a siren in the not-so-distant distance ... but I was overwhelmed by the sounds of the natural environment.

Looking around, I was amazed at the visuals provided by my natural environment.  Despite winter's stubborn streak this year (yes! Mother Nature is STILL planning a coup early next week ... sigh), I witnessed signs that Spring is attempting to overcome in this battle ... green grass ... showy daffodils ... Forsythia desperately attempting a yellow flourish.

With everything Winter has thrown at her, Spring is still struggling to bloom.

Isn't that like us? 

Women, that is.

Seems like it has never been more true for me these days.  No matter what the world throws at me, I am still struggling to bloom, and some days are a real struggle, lets be honest here.

I am not sure why it is, but some where along the lines of societal change, women shifted into these mean, jealous, catty/caddy (I'm always unsure of the appropriate spelling of that word) beings whose main focus it seems is to spread negative, hateful barbs where ever they are.  

I have been guilty.  I think we all have, but I wonder about the phenomenon.  

Why?  When so many of us are struggling to bloom, why add insult to injury?


I think that's what it is.  If we point out the flaws in others then we don't have to deal with our flaws ... and if we're being absolutely honest here, there isn't a one of us that are perfect.  Not one.  So, why is it that we spend so much time consumed with the negative?

 I walked 1.88 miles and was blown away by the positive ... the absolute beauty of this little area of the world, and believe you me, there was plenty of negative to take in ... the houses whose homeowners take absolutely no pride whatsoever in anything they own ... the ever-present litter every where ... dog owners that allow their dogs to live virtually without human contact in dog runs ... I mean, trust me.  Negative is out there. We live in a flawed universe, despite what science might claim otherwise. 

Working under a dirty film of negativity for the past few weeks ... probably months, if I want to be completely transparent ... has caused me to fall into the grasp of a very negative winter season, and that has stunted my blooming.  

As I type this, there are Cardinals and Chickadees just outside my window ... a window where the sunlight is pouring in ... just twittering away in a happy cacophony of noise.  And it's infectious ... 

And happy ...

And joyful ... 

And I can't help but be caught up in it.

Sometimes it takes being strong, and perhaps flying that freak flag, in order for you to step away from the ooze of the negative and determine that despite the desire to beat down, you will rise above and bloom.

I am going to bloom ... 

How about you?

Thursday, March 28, 2013

Weekly Accountability #1

I have been back and forth about the topic I am fixin' to undertake this evening.  

Why? you want the short version?  Or the long one?

My sister would ask for the short version.  She's the one that wants to know why you called her, but when you leave a message, she deletes it after she hears me speak my name because she knows "I'm going to ramble about nothing."

I am not sure how she knows this, but whatever.

You're getting the long version. 

To begin with, I am fat.  I wasn't always that way, but I am now.  I've discussed the reasons I became fat on other blog posts, so I won't spend endless amounts of time regurgitating the reasons or issues.  The fact remains, I am fat.  

At 39, I decided I didn't want to enter my 40s being fat.  So, I began weight watchers online, and I lost 15 pounds.  Then I gained them all back ... enter Megan ... 40, and still fat.  


It didn't take me very long to realize I needed more accountability, and so I made the decision to add Weight Watchers meetings to the mix.  That was in January 2012.  I did an okay job ... weight loss is a slow process for me, mainly because I love to eat, and I suppose I am still working through the "living to eat" versus "eating to live" mentality. 

I was sneaking up on 20 lbs lost going into the Christmas holiday, thanks to walking three miles daily, and then I was hit with plantar fasciitis. I stopped the exercise in an effort to stop the pain, and, well, the pounds came back.  So did my uncontrollable need to shove food in my mouth.

The past two weeks have been an exercise in gaining control of my life again ...

... In not making any more excuses ...

... In not allowing the negative that seems to seep into our very beings be the guiding principal in my life. 

In doing so, I I have come to realize that I needed to be really, truly transparent.  In being transparent, perhaps I will be able to inspire others to gain control in their lives as well. 

And so begins a series of Weekly Accountability posts ... 

Beginning weight (January 30, 2012): 229.2
Goal weight: 175
Goal Body fat: 22%
Current weight: 217.8
Current body fat: (unknown ... waiting for the caliper I ordered to arrive :) ...)
Loss to date: 11.4
Pounds to reach goal: 42.8

Weekly Photo Update:

My goal is to eat 6 mini-meals throughout the day, but I am still struggling with portion sizes for those meals.  Imagine that!  Portion size seems to be my nemesis these days.  It's all about the tweaking, and I plan to do some of that this weekend.

One of the tweaks that I will be making is keeping a canning jar in the fridge for cheese sticks (morning and afternoon) that can be paired with a piece of fruit or a veggie for my morning and afternoon mini meals.  Also, I will be creating items that I can put into containers for lunches through out the week as well as my weekly tossed salad allotment in my canning jars.  I think I will be putting my carrot sticks and celery sticks in canning jars for better storage as well.  They seem to store better that way.

I started out with a great food day, but I ended on a poor note.  That's okay. I have learned that I cannot beat myself up.  It does no good.  Each day is a new slate ... clean and fresh.  So, tomorrow, I will begin anew. 

So, there you have it.  My first accountability update ... with all the nitty-gritty business out there for everyone to see.  May I inspire my readers ... it's a journey not a marathon ... and despite where I am, I need to savor each day as each day is a gift! 

So savor I will!

Wednesday, March 27, 2013

Spring Break 2013 -- DeClutter or Bust ... Part 2

So, after my Weight Watcher's meeting and dinner, I tackled the linen closet, a place where hair products go to die.

My dad called right as I was getting ready to dive in, so I failed to get a BEFORE picture, but this after picture says it all ... nearly three-fourths of the stuff that resided in this closet is now out in my garbage can!  The garbage man is gonna love me tomorrow morning!

You can't see the top shelf, but it contains extra blankets.  I've thought of putting those in the guest bedroom closet, but that is a HOT MESS right now, and so I think I will keep them right there right now.

Second shelf down is where my hand towels (hidden in the depths of the left side of the closet), my bath towels (can you tell I've not done that load of laundry yet?), my spring/summer sheets (not folded very nicely ... I need to re-do those!), and my flannel sheets (hidden in the depths of the right side of my closet).

The third shelf down is where I keep those hard to contain items in baskets.  The first basket, just hidden from view to the left, is where I have extra soap, extra toothpaste, extra deodorant ... you know, all those things you find on sale at the grocery that you say to yourself, "DAG GONE IT!  This is a good deal!  I have to stock up!"

The next basket contains all my nail "stuff:" polishes, creams, removers, clippers and scissors, and stuff.  The third basket contains my first aid stuff.  Finally, just out of sight, is my "outdoor" container: bug sprays, After Bite (LOVE that stuff!!), sun screen, aloe, and the like.  There was just enough space left over to put my heating pad and ace bandages and stuff.

Below the shelves are my laundry baskets that I use to sort my dirty clothes.  A pretty convenient system for moi!

Last night, I was too exhausted (and JUSTIFIED was coming on!) to tackle my Master Bedroom Closet, so that was the first thing on the TO DO LIST this morning.

I'd just "organized" it back in the fall, but like a lot of organization projects, it needed tweaking.

Here is a BEFORE ...

As you can see, a hot mess!  Believe it or not, I've cleaned out my closet once already, and it probably could stand another go through.  However, I am waiting until I drop another size before I do more cleaning.  It needed an overhaul in the way I organize and search for clothes on a daily basis.

Here is how I ended up organizing things....

The top shelf, which you can't see, I left virtually as is.  It houses wool sweaters that I just love, but which I hardly ever wear down here.  I just hate parting with them because they are so classic.  So there they sit.

The top row of hanging clothes are all tanks, blouses, tees, and cardigans (I have a sickness when it comes to cardies).  I had organized them by color and not by type left to right.  It was hard to get to the stuff to the left.  Thus, I organized right to left. Tanks were first, by color.  Then tees by color ... finally, I organized printed blouses by dominate color, followed by cardies in color.

The bottom row of hanging clothes are all long sleeved tees, blouses, turtle necks, and jackets (I have a sickness where jackets are concerned).   Again, I organized them right to left by color.

The hanging clothes to the right are dresses, slacks, trousers jeans, skirts, and regular jeans.  Regular jeans, you say?  Yes!  I hung those on one of those multi-hanger deals.  They are awfully heavy, but it does give more room in my closet for the other casual and dressy pants/slacks I have.  I decided to do that to free up room in my dresser for school tees and shorts.

I put all of my bras in a white wicker basket on the shelf under the top row of hanging clothes, and all of my camis went into a bin that resides on the left side of that shelf.

My scarves all went into a bin on the shelf above the hanging unit on the right.  Tights were put into a smaller bin and are now stored on the floor of my closet next to my shoes.  I also have a small basket full of rolled up belts, which currently, is on the floor of the closet for lack of a better place right now.

I also have a hook on the right hand side of the closet where I plan to hang the next day's outfit.  That was a great tip I read on a blog (sorry! I can't remember which one!) as I've combed the Internet for organizing tips.  Doesn't matter if it's a work day or not.  Hang the next day's outfit there, and it's one less thing you have to do the next day.

I suppose it is time to work out and then plot and plan my next organizational coup.  I think it's going to be my guest bedroom closet, which, again, I've cleaned out before, but it ALWAYS seems to be a dumping ground for "stuff no one knows what to do with."

Stay tuned!

Tuesday, March 26, 2013

Spring Break 2013 -- Declutter or Bust

Some people go on exotic vacations for their Spring Break.

Ha!  Not this woman. Oh no!  I organize stuff.

Okay, given the choice, I'd probably like to go on exotic vacations, but since my pocket book doesn't allow for such radical spending, I will have to make my own fun.

It is my goal to systematically go room to room in my house, and clean and organize whatever I can get my hands on.

Well, that or at least until I grow bored of that line of thinking/activity.

I just realized, a few weeks back, as I was anticipating yet another stay-cation, that I have lived in this house for two and a half years, and I have managed to make it a disaster on every single floor/level.  I mean, surface-wise, no one would be the wiser.  However, go to the places that no one can see, and BOY HOWDY!  You will see a complete and total disaster!

Today's goal:  Basement Reorganization/DeClutter and Linen Closet Reorganization and DeClutter.

Both of these areas have become a dumping ground of odds and ends.  It's beyond pitiful, and I just decided that rather than keep all the crap, it was time to get rid of it.

I have FILLED to overflowing my recycling bin.  So much so that I have recycling waiting in the wings for NEXT week because I can't fit another thing in the bin.  That's pitiful, ladies and gentlemen.  In fact, now that I think about it, there might not even be a word to fully describe the pitiful nature of my basement and linen closet.  Hmmm...I will think on it.

The basement is DONE!  Here. I have proof.  See below!

This was the BEFORE.  Yes, before you even point it out, I need to be honest and tell you that I do, in fact, have a ridiculous amount of Christmas tubs. It's true.

I had help.  And by help, I mean, a certain someone that was CONSTANTLY in the way.  

The AFTER ... a corner full of tubs.  

My exercise space.  I can not wait to work without fear of tripping over stuff.  

Monday, March 25, 2013

I Didn't Recognize You With Your Shirt On

While sitting with Erin last night at her grandmother-in-law's visitation, a man walked in, and I was immediately struck with the thought, "Hmmm...he seems familiar to me."

You know how it is.  You see someone.  They look familiar.  You can't quite place them.  You know you've seen them somewhere.  It just won't come to you.

I watched him as he made his way to my Erin's in-laws, paid his respects, and chatted.  The whole time, I couldn't shake this nagging feeling that I'd some how been introduced to him before ... yet, I couldn't figure out where ... or even when.

He eventually found himself in front of Erin and I, chatting about kids and jobs, and suddenly, it hit me!  "I think that is their old neighbor!"

I still wasn't completely sure, though.

You see, whenever I saw their old neighbor, he was always shirtless.  With out shirt.  Always. With a capital A.

Cutting grass? Yep.  No shirt.

Conducting maintenance his boat?  No shirt.

Dead of winter?  Yep, he'd be out on his porch, brushing snow off his steps sans shirt.

When Erin had her first baby, I was over visiting one day, and there was a knock on their door.  When her husband opened the door, there was their neighbor, over to see the baby, and guess what?

If you guessed he was without his shirt, you are right!

So, as soon as he'd taken his leave from the funeral home, I leaned over to Erin and asked the one, true, burning question of the evening.  "Hey, was that your old neighbor?  The one that never wore a shirt?"

Erin started laughing.  "Yes!  I'd forgotten about that."

"Huh, I almost didn't recognize him with his shirt on ..."

Sunday, March 24, 2013

I Crashed a Funeral

Okay, it wasn't a funeral, per say.  It was the visitation, but I crashed it, nonetheless.

My good friend's husband had a death in his family.  His grandmother passed away.  

Since I will be taking care of their young sons tomorrow during the funeral, I felt it necessary to go to the visitation tonight to pay my respects.  It was at a local funeral home in town -- one that has more than one area for such things.  Now, I must insert something at this particular point in the story.  Chiefly, if you are going to run simultaneous visitations, it might be a good idea to ... I don't ... perhaps post the names of the parties in question on, say, a door, or something.

Why, you ask?

Well, I rounded the corner, having parked around the corner from the funeral home, and saw a few gentlemen that looked like they could be with the visitation crew, standing on the front porch of the annexed portion of the funeral home, and I quickly decided that was the place I needed to be.  I marched in, and made my way, almost to the front of the chapel, everybody and their brother standing around looking at me like, "Well who is she!?" before I realized I didn't know a soul in the room.  

Abort, abort, abort!

So, I turned on my heel and sought out a funeral concierge or whatever they are calling themselves.

"May I help you?"  Said the man in a slow, gentle tone.

"Yes.  I am looking for the Peach visitation."   It was only then I realized that I hadn't the first clue what my friend's grandmother's name was.  I mean, I couldn't really refer to her as Mamaw, now could I?

"Do you mean the so-and-so visitation in the next building?"  He was giving me The Eye.  I knew if I didn't tread lightly, I could be bounced right out of the whole joint.

"Umm...well, here's the thing.  I am not really sure what the lady's name was who died."

Again with The Eye.

"I just know her daughter's last name is Peach."

He cleared his throat, disapprovingly, and forced a smile. "Ahem, that visitation is next door."

As I was entering the next building, I happened to look down at my black slacks ...the same ones I'd lint-rollered BEFORE I left the house. They were covered in cat hair.

So, yeah.  I crashed a funeral.  And I did so in cat hair-covered slacks.  And I was wearing a jean jacket to boot.

I am nothing if not classy.

On Being a Dork

I borrowed a few DVDs from my local public library to get me through my WEEK OF THE SLUG, i.e., last week.  I took them back yesterday, and as I was raising my hand to drop them into the return bin, I had the forethought to check the container of the latest DVD I viewed.  Good thing I did.

It was devoid of the actual DVD.

It would seem that I left the DVD in my DVD player, because, really?  Who actually puts those things BACK in the DVD container upon finishing said DVD?  Clearly, not I!

I wasn't sure when it was due back to the library, and I certainly didn't want to incur any charges, so I had to explain my lack of planning on my part to the girl behind the counter.  She smiled knowingly, and after checking on the computer, assured me I still had a week left before it was due back.

Whew!  Dodged a bullet on that one!

My public library is part of a larger group of libraries in the Bluegrass Region taking part in the 1 Book 1 Bluegrass reading project.  It's been advertised quite heavily, and because the author wrote this book in Write a Novel in a Month thingy (something I've considered being a part of for a while now), I was super interested in reading it ... plus, it's gotten some buzz.

I sauntered up to the reference librarian and asked if she had any more of the reading project books left. Why yes she did, and she went about explaining to me all the cool events planned that would coordinate with the book reading event.  Because the events were, in fact, very cool, I didn't pay as much attention to the book, and so when she was done with her schpiel, I made my way up to the self-check out counter, plunked the book down on the desensitizing pad, and set about checking out the book.  Only, the book wouldn't show up in the self-check out computer.  I flagged one of the library staff down to question why it wouldn't, and the same girl that had heard me fuss about the fact that I'd left the DVD back in DVD player, now openly laughed as she explained that the library was GIVING away these books ... FREE.

"FREE?!"  I squawked.  I mean, my mamma told me there was no such thing as a free lunch.  So, you can imagine my surprise and, quite frankly, utter elation.

The girl laughed at me ... openly.

I get it.  I would have laughed at me too.

Out-Growing Stuff

I talked with my mom this afternoon.  It's been a while since I've been able to talk with my mom, and I just needed to unload on her.

I have been struggling with a lot of things, most of which I've kept to myself.  Chiefly, I've kept them to myself because I find myself the safe place for others to unload on me, and while I am flattered that people feel safe to do that with me, it's exhausting work because NO ONE wants to take the time to listen to me.  In fact, it's been a very long while since I've had someone that will listen to my issues without some snarky comment in return ... or a flippant "fix" to a problem.  It's isolating.  I've mentioned this a couple of times to people, and, you've guessed it, I've received snarky comments in reply, quick fixes, or, even worse, a change in subject all together.

I've been struggling with being single in my 40s NOT because I feel like my life would be more complete with a man in it, but because very few people are single in their 40s.  There are very few people that have the schedules to be spontaneous any more.  Most must find some place to stash a kid or two and then check with a spouse and so on and so forth.  I always complain that my social life was so much better in my 20s. Well!  That was because NONE of us had kids or spouses back then.  Those that are married tend to like to do things with other couples because of a perceived or actual awkwardness involved with the spouse.  So, that leaves me as the third wheel in many cases.

Please, please, please do not read this as me fishing for invitations. Nor is it me looking for anyone to feel sorry for me.  It's just that even now, in this day and age, there is such a stigma attached to being single, and those that disagree with me are the very ones perpetuating the stigma.  Shoot!  Most churches aren't even sure what to do with us single people, which, quite honestly, is amazing to me.  And I am using that word in the most sarcastic sort of way.  If our own churches can't even figure out how to handle those of us that are single, then I am sorta know??

Perhaps it boils down to me out-growing some things ...

I might need to be a little more concerned with sloughing off those things, places and maybe even people that are causing me to lose sight of the bigger picture.

Getting My Organization On!

I spent last week just mentally recuperating ... or vegetating ... or stewing.  You choose the word.  Whatever I was doing, I am not done and ready to get on with the business of getting back to life!

My first priority is getting my organization on!

For the most part, I've done an okay job of organizing things, but since moving into this place two and a half years ago, I've added crap very important household items, and I've shoved placed things very important items in places that perhaps are not the best places for said items.

I am going to attempt the impossible, people.  I am going to try to shove a 14-week program into a week.  I figure, I have the stamina, seeing as I am on Spring Break.  So, why not?  Right?  I just need to make sure that I utilize my time appropriately.  That would not include mindless TV and staying in one's pajamas until well past noon.  That was last week.  We're on to a new week.

Tomorrow, my plan is to tackle the kitchen.  It will get a huge overhaul that will include a good cleaning.  I figure that if I can start at a good time in the morning, I could have it done by early afternoon and still give myself enough time to perhaps tackle another part of the house ... perhaps.

Photos to come ... or at least an accounting of my lackluster performance should my organizational endeavors slip....

Friday, March 22, 2013

Celebrating the Little Things

I have been a gigantic black cloud as of late ... with a gigantic attitude to go with it.

I keep saying it is because of the season of life that I find myself stuck in, and, I suppose, that part of that rather lame excuse is true.  Don't we all get to to certain points in our lives where things just seem all sideways?

I mean...I've felt for a long time like I am surrounded by people but am truly all alone.  I know. It sounds whiny, and to a certain extent, it is.  You get to an age where no one has a lot of time for the single people roaming this Earth.  Again, it sounds whiny, but I get really tired of doing the searching out.  I would like someone else to take up that call.

But then, I suppose, that is asking a lot of people ... when we live in a society and era that asking stuff of people is just a plain, old inconvenience.

I don't know ... all the whining in the above paragraph(s) seems secondary to the the bigger portion of my funk.  I think a bigger part of my malaise, if you can call it that, is that I am too hard on myself ... I just don't give myself the credit I deserve.

Top on my GRUMPY, CRABBY, NO GOOD, HORRIBLE DAY list is my weight.  I have been so discouraged with the lack of progress I've made.

My foot is the bane of my existence these days, and the lack of exercise hasn't helped my mood.

Oh yes, ladies and gentlemen!  It is the truth.  Exercise, does, in fact, put in you a better frame of mind to deal with idiots individuals that don't see things your way and stresses and the lack of money and well, you name it.  The endorphin(s) released in exercise pursuits seem to make it all better.

Since it has been a while for an endorphin release in my system, I have managed crabby and grouchy quite nicely, thank you very much.

The point of this rambling stream of consciousness blog?

The other day, I decided to be lazy, a term I've become quite familiar with as of late, and I went to a Chinese restaurant for take-out.  If that fact alone wasn't horrific enough, as I was sitting there waiting for my bag of cholesterol to be delivered to my greedy hands, a couple walked in.  This fact alone is not all together uncommon on its own.  However, it was the size of one half of the couple that was cause for a pause in my self-deprecating thought process.  The young female half of the couple was huge.  My guess is that she was in her early 20s, and yet she had difficulty walking due to her size.  I watched as other people watched her, allowing that typical stereotype that people have for those that are fat, play out among the patrons.  I was immediately clenched by guilt and then by pain.  Whether this girl liked to admit it or not, I know she can not be happy with herself.  I know the feelings of guilt when you binge, swearing you will do better the next time ... and the next time ... and the next time.  I know the loneliness that causes the binges in the first place ... and the guilt for feeling that way to begin with ... it's a vicious, ugly circle, and it's one that I've been fighting for a long time.

So as I sat and watched her struggle to sit comfortably in her chair, I felt a sense of sadness for her, and that's when it occurred to me:

I am not that person any more!  Okay, yes, I am not where I need to be, but I am not that person.  I am changing ... I have changed!  And rather than wallow in self-pity, I should be knee-deep in celebration!  I've managed to lose almost 20 lbs.  Yes, I did gain 7 of those pounds back, but 13 lbs is still pretty respectable in the whole grand scheme of things ... and here's the thing, I am still working on it!  I am still working on ways to tweak the system and make it work for me.  Have I had lulls in the journey?  Have I experienced bumps in the road? I have a missed the mark a time or two?  Absolutely.  But who doesn't?  Even the most disciplined among us misses the mark (probably more than they would like to admit).  We wouldn't be human if we didn't.

So, I am going to celebrate.

I am going to celebrate that I am healthy.
I am going to celebrate that I am working on being even healthier.
I am going to celebrate that I have the ability to make better choices.
I am going to celebrate when I do make a better choice.
I am going to celebrate in my ability to look at the positive rather than dwell on the negative.
I am going to celebrate that I, in fact, have the ability to pick out the positive, however minuscule it might be and focus on it.
I am going to celebrate the little things, which, really, in the whole grand scheme of things, are really quite big.

It's time to celebrate, people!!!  And celebrate I will!

Monday, March 11, 2013

On Being Committed OR Getting Committed to the Asylum

You might know that I have had a struggle with my weight ... and the fact that I have a lot of it ...  weight, that is ... packed not so conspicuously on my body.

Perhaps you didn't know this, though.

Perhaps you were blissfully unaware because I don't like to actually point out the fact that I have difficulty keeping my mouth shut when it comes to food.  More specifically, I can most certainly keep my mouth shut when it comes to good stuff like veggies and fruit.  Where the difficulty comes into play is when I am face to face with refined sugars covered in fluffy frosting and sprinkles on top.

When things are stressful ...

When I feel I can't deal ...

When I'm lonely ...

When things don't go my way ...

When the planets are out of alignment ...

When it's a pink sock day in a world of green sock days ...

You name it; I eat.

Perhaps you were aware though ... I mean, it's sort of hard to miss.  Things on my body are LARGE.

It became apparent, as parts of my body refused to work under the strain -- oh you know the parts ... knees, feet, backs ... all the important stuff -- that I had to do something to get all this weight off.

I began Weight Watchers, which, again, I don't like to admit, and I began exercising ... a lot ... and for someone who always said she hated sweating (could I come up with a more lame excuse, really???), this was practically unheard of ... really.

But I did!  Eating healthier and walking 3 miles every single day, and by September, I had come the closest I had ever come to dropping a significant amount of weight ... within 20 lbs!  I was over the moon excited!

I could fit into a size smaller.

People were starting to notice.

It was a wonderful feeling.

And then the holidays hit ...

And some of those old wounds were laid bare ...

And this little thing called "women" and "their forties" hit, and within a few months, I'd gained 7 pounds back.

Yes, I realize, in the whole grand scheme of things, 7 pounds isn't a lot, but it is when you are looking at TONS more to lose still.

I was angry and mad at myself and generally feeling just beyond discouraged, and I started reading this blog. What an inspiration, this girl is, and suddenly, I realized that I can do this.  I HAVE been doing this.  Since last January, I've been doing this.

Sometimes, committing to something means that you have to put in 110%

Sometimes, committing to something means that you can't give up even when everyone and everything around you points to that as your only option.

Sometimes, committing to something means that you just dig your heels in and do it.  JUST. DO. IT ... like Nike always said.

Sometimes, committing to something means that you might end up being committed yourself ... to an asylum ... for the weary and insane, but I suppose we can just call that a vacation, if and when that need ever rises.

I guess what I am trying to say is that I will finally, publicly admitting what everyone around me has seen for a while ... I am in the need of losing weight, and not because I am trying to be the next Runway Model or because I am trying to snag some Dr. McDreamy (although, let's be honest here, that would definitely be a perk!).  I am doing this because my body was designed to function in a healthy manner within a healthy weight and with healthy fuels, in the form of healthy foods, powering it.  I am doing this because I teach 4th grade girls ... little girls who are entirely too concerned with body image at 9 and 10 years old, and I want them to be surrounded with healthy role models. I need to be a healthy role model in their lives. I am doing this because life is lived so much more fully when you can fully embrace it.

And so I am committing.  I am in.  I am all the way in.

Friday, March 08, 2013

Finally Friday


This has been a week.

This has been a week.

This has been a week.

This has been a week.

Listen, it doesn't much matter where you put the emphasis, this has been a week.  It just has.  Period. End of story.

So, of course, in rare and timely form, my Stye in the Eye, (it gets capital letters and some personification for taking on a life of its own) has decided to whip up a full-blown eye infection.  Yes, that's right.  Complete with puss and ick and redness and itching and soreness and general miserableness. 

If we're using analogies here, then The Stye in the Eye's final number is the cherry on the top of my manure sundae.

What is a girl to do after such fun and merriment? 

Well, for starters, she's going to hang out in the doctor's office with others that are as miserable as she .... on a Friday night .... after hours .... and she's going to pay $20 to do it ... possibly $25.  I can't remember. 

Then, she will go home, to a cat demanding more food, and contemplate her utter lack of motivation to make anything remotely delish for dinner. 

So, pretty much another FUN and EVENTFUL Friday night.

I might not get out of my pajamas the entire weekend in protest to this week....

Thursday, March 07, 2013

A Cat's Life

It is days like today where I envy my cat's life. 

Were it only so simple to lay around and sleep as much as you cared too, not caring one iota about your weight or your lack of exercise or whether you were interesting to someone of the opposite sex or why youaren'tinteresting to the opposite sex or how you were going to possibly pay all the bills or if you'd ever be able to go out to dinner with friends again or why your friends are always talking about stuff that never pertains to you but you *still* have to sit and listen and why everyone feels the need to lay their troubles down at your feet, but then behaves as though *your* troubles/fears/annoyances/issues are nothing more than the mere whinings of someone who has it all ...

Yes, to be so carefree ... to be so unencumbered by the world around them.  Yep, on days like this, I really do envy my cat!

Wednesday, March 06, 2013

A Word About Road Salt

Road salt does not give you super human powers. 

I am not sure everyone here in Kentucky understands that concept.


It would seem that for most people that live in this area, once the salt hits the pavement, you figure you can go as fast as you want.

This is where that theory is flawed, cuz, well, the whole chemical reaction thing; ya know?  You see, salt merely melts snow and ice, it doesn't make it go away.  Nor does it make your tires stick more closely to the roadway.  And the freezing point, which is 32 degrees Fahrenheit, by the way.  Even with salt on the roads, wet stuff can still freeze. 

I am always amazed when I see someone zoom past me, going well over what the road conditions would allow, and then, in an equally stupid move, slam on their brakes when they realize, "Oops!  This road is slippery."

What is wrong with going slow?  When bad weather is imminent, you need to PLAN AHEAD.  That means, you need to leave your house a little earlier than originally planned.  Oh heavens!  And then you need to be prepared to go a little more slowly than you would normally go.

I know.  I know.  I am such a buzz-kill in the day of 0 to 80 in 4.5 seconds, but seriously.  Isn't it easier getting to work or home in one piece than say, taking a spin, quite literally, on a particularly crappy piece of roadway, risking life and limb?

And while we're on the topic of pushes and pulls and gravitational what-not, who, might I ask, thought it would be an exceptionally good idea to slam on one's brakes on icy, slick roads??  This really makes no sense.  No logical sense.

Northerners have been following these rules, for the most part (we have our share of dumbos too) for the better part of, well, the invention of the car??? 

Perhaps no one has shared these rules with you.  Allow me to serve as a public service announcement then. 

Tuesday, March 05, 2013

TMJ, Styes, Tornado Drills, and Leaky Sinks

Today, I am going for my final fitting of my newest TMJ bite plate. 

Yeah, most girls of a certain age are getting fitted for a lovely, flowy, white gown so they might marry their Prince Charming.

Me?  I'm getting a bite plate, because I have Temporomandibular Joint Disorder.  Allow me to be your cautionary tale, kids.  While I was never, ever allowed to chew gum that wasn't sugar free, I was allowed to chew gum.  And as long as I could afford to purchase it (through allowances and birthday money), then I could chew as much of it as I wanted. 

And I did.

All through grade school.

And high school ... oh Lord, have mercy, ALL. THROUGH. HIGH. SCHOOL.

Then I hit college.  And I was still chewing gum.  But then I was introduced to stress.  At the ripe old age of 20, I had the jaw of an 80 year old.

I suppose it is never good when your dentist asks you to open your mouth, and your jaw pops so badly that he actually cringes.  Yeah, poor Dr. Renshaw, I just make him cringe ever single time I open my mouth, and he always looks at his hygienist and says, "Oh my!  Did you just hear that?"

And I'm thinking to myself, "Who didn't hear it?"  That's what I want to know.

So, today, I am going to get that fitting. 

The stye is still there ... mocking me ... daring me to do something to make it go away. 

I'm told I shouldn't wear makeup, but let's be honest here, people.  Me without makeup is just plain scary.  It is.  Not lying about it.  So, I wear makeup ... and I will probably infect the other eye, and then that stupid stye will have the last word.

We have a tornado drill today.  Since this is part of tornado alley and all, I suppose it's a practical drill to do. 

Remind me again ... why did I, the tornado-phobe, decided it would be a good idea to move to a state that has them ... ALL. THE. TIME.? 

Oh, that's right.  A job.  Yep.  That was it.

My kitchen sink is leaky again.  I just changed a something-or-another in that dang-blasted sink last year!  It must be protesting.  It's worked hard for all these past 12 months.  It's done.  It doesn't want me to run it any longer.

I mean the excitement of my life, folks.  It's a wonder I have any time to ponder life with all this excitement.

Monday, March 04, 2013

A List

  1. I have a stye ... on my eye lid.  I've never, ever had a stye on my eye.  I fear it's because of an old mascara tube, which I am usually very, very anal about changing.  However, I wasn't so anal this time around and, well, the day I got the new tube, the sty appeared.  I am currently trying to figure out how to get rid of it.  I do not like it taking up residence on my eyelid.
  2. I need to dust my house.  I do not like dusting my house.  Thus, the reason why it is dusty.
  3. I need to finish laundry.  I cannot seem to get that done in a day's time like I use to.  I think I am getting lazy.
  4. I spent part of my weekend changing nick-knacks around in my house.  I have to do that every so often because otherwise, I get bored, and then the house begins to look messy and then I have to clean it and cleaning it is a bummer, except when I am on a manic cleaning binge, and then it's a good thing.  I feel a good, manic, cleaning binge on the horizon.
  5. I need to remember that SPRING FORWARD is this coming weekend.  I will likely forget.  It won't be pretty if I forget.  I'll show up to church late ... or early ... I can never remember which one.
  6. I need to come up with some more interesting recipes for dinner.  I am in a BIG TIME rut.  Like, years and years of the same thing, rut.  I'm bored with myself as a chef. 
  7. I need to find a lovely spot to go and rest.  If only I had the money, I'd take a quick trip to Jamaica ... or a Caribbean Cruise ... eh, nix the cruise.  I'd rather not get stuck on a boat for a week with no functioning toilets and no food.  That sounds too much like my own house ... well, minus the toilets.  They work.
  8. I am dying to get out and weed and work in my flower beds.  I was dying to do that last year, and then that desire died.  I think it was the hot, hot, hot weather. 
  9. I need to get my foot better ... soon!  Research on foot exercises commences ASAP.  I need to get back into my exercise routine.  I am feeling flabby and crabby and not at all fabby.  Did you like my little poetic ditty there?  It's okay.  You can say it.  You're impressed, aren't you?

On Being Crabby

I am crabby.

I make no excuses.  I just am.

It's that time of year again ... the time where I get closer and closer to needing a break.  So, yes.  I am crabby.

That may cause me to be a bit of a Negative Nellie.  So be it.

When one is crabby, one needs a bit of Negative Nellie in their lives.  They just do.

Sally Sunshine can just go take a leap off the nearest bridge.  Sorry, Sally.

I *might* try to rectify the situation by suggesting meeting for coffee ... or dinner ... or just hanging out.  Take me up on the offer, but only if *I* offer.  Remember, I am crabby.  Sometimes, it just has to be on my terms.  I do not have to rationalize it.  It just is.

I both crave being around people and abhor it at the same time.  My crabbiness is a study in extreme dichotomies.

I should come with a warning label.

I suppose this should serve as the warning label:  Handle with extreme caution.  Contents under extreme pressure.  Highly flammable.  Highly volatile.