Monday, January 31, 2011

Bunny's Dinner Stateside Style

Bunny at Weightloss expedition provided us with the recipe and pictures from her dinner. Well it just so happened that I had those ingredients sitting right in my refrigerator. I also had no plans for dinner so viola...I reran Bunny's dinner for mine. Well..really David cooked it. He came in and asked, "so what are you making me for dinner?" yupp..very cheeky given my normal women's lib attitude towards cooking for my man. Instead of my usual..bite me response I said...well I haven't started it yet cause I'm working but I know what we are having...and then directed him to Bunny's post.

He did a little fiddling with the recipe. We didn't have as much spinach as her recipe called for and we happened to have some herb butter in the fridge and a shallot laying around. We also had half a block of cream cheese. so...our dinner was:

10 slices of American style Pepper bacon cooked crispy.
4oz of cream cheese
6 cups or so of cooked rotini pasta (what we had laying in the cupboard)
one shallot
150 grams fresh spinach
1 1/2 small onions both the shallot were chopped and cooked until translucent in 2 T of herb butter (just salted butter with garlic, sage, parsley, basil, oregano and chives whipped into it and left in the fridge to be used as we like).
grated parm. cheese when served.

so melt the butter, cook the onions while waiting for water to boil. Broiled the bacon at the same time in the oven. dumped in the pasta to the boiling water. Chopped the spinach, threw it in with the onions and cheese just as the pasta was almost done. Dumped the pasta in quickly and added a bit more oregano. served on lunch or small sized plates followed by a quick grating of parm. cheese.

David's Serving size
My Serving Size

On a side note-yesterday a bought a pair of size SMALL yoga pants while we were shopping. They are a touch tight and I would have purchased the medium but they didn't have them in that size with a rolled waistband (I love yoga pants with tall waists). The beige long sleeved shirt is also a find from yesterday. It was an extra large from the Junior's department. the pants cost 12 bucks and the shirt 6.99.

How Do You Set Boundaries?

I miss the long hot days I had last summer. Much of this is my own fault because I fail to say No-but I have yet to figure out how to fit doctor/dentist appointments, babysitting, work, home life and volunteer stuff in a satisfactory way.

Today-babysitting Grandson (we do have a good time), trading off with Cinda to carry on and pick up Grace from school while I go to a dentist appointment and go pick up some papers from work. Then home to do even more work in preparation for a meeting tomorrow.

The week stretching ahead of me is daunting. I would much rather garden or knit at this point. Perhaps I am having a case of post-weekend-itis.

How do you balance your day and commitments?


Sunday, January 30, 2011

Back at Goal-Shopping Weekend

I got on the scale this morning and phew...all is well with my goal weight again. I am back int he fold of 164. 164.2 to be exact. We had a lovely lie in then launched out of bed to get the house clean for our weekly real-estate open house. Everyone was in a much more pleasant mood (or was that me?) and we all pitched in like a fine oiled machine to get the job done. I seems to always get the toilets (not so much fun). David took on the kitchen, living room and family room. And Grace did her room with minimal complaints followed by dusting and a general pick up around the rest of the house. Our agent said 14 people came through today (fingers crossed one of them provides us with an offer finally). My newly painted walls are already beginning to show marks (I hate flat paint for that reason) and the clutter is beginning to swell again.

At noon we left to go shopping. Grace had a growth spurt and exited the childrens department in size for womens. She is fast approaching my size now and that worries me a bit for two reasons. She is 9 and I would prefer that she stay in the childrens department as adult sized clothes are difficult sometimes to keep the child-like style that a 9 year old should wear and I don't want my child to crack into my new wardrobe (yup selfish reason on that one). We found quite a few clothes for her at Marshalls. We also went to the Pendleton outlet store yesterday for a few more choices. Grace found a skirt at Pendleton and I found three skirts and another dress for my upcoming dance (I will wait to decide which one as it gets closer). I still need to sort out what shoes I want to wear and get some black hose. At Marshalls I found a pair of denim trouser slacks and a tshirt while grace found several tshirts, some yoga pants, two pairs of leggings and a great liz Claiborne jacket for 10.00. Oh the bargains we found...I will provide some pictures when I can shift my carcass off the couch. :)

Food is still back on target-not hungry and just eating meals wahooooo 163 here I come. I am working really hard at making sure I drink plenty of fluids between meals as I still worry about the water pills.


Saturday, January 29, 2011

Wow!! One pound from Goal in One Day!

Well I am sitting as a happy camper today! It is amazing the effect that a little (well ok maybe a lot) of water floating around in your cells can do. I am down to 165 this morning (yup after all of that one diuretic and whammo the weight comes off). More importantly I feel like myself again. It is weird how feeling out of sorts creeps up on you. It is also weird how impactful this water seems to have been on my band. Ok...first things first.

I have been peeing like crazy-I am also thirsty. I have not been thirsty or peeing for at least a couple of weeks now but with a band on board I just chalked it up to being tight...yada yada. Well This is a message to me that I am not just a girl with a band but there are other physcial ailments I can have that have nothing to do with the band. This hormone thing is a pain in the arse but apparently completely expected as a 46 year old person and there is really nothing to be done about it.

The creeping thing was odd. After Christmas I felt tired and blue but credited it to my poor eating, Winter blues and lack of exercise. Although I will not let any of those completely off the hook I think it was really this incroaching water retention. I felt a bit bloated in my tummy region but i said to myself..oh those 5 pounds are the result of your eating..that bloat is fat. I can tell you that as of this morning my clothes fit again so obviously only a little bit of it was cookie fat :) I have definitely learned that I need to evaluate how I feel a little more closely and quit falling back time and time again on the blame game we all play with ourselves. Again I was blaming myself for something physical (I think we girls get screwed with this hormone thing).

Ok..the water did something completely counter-intuitive with my band. I was actually hungry as heck and sometimes would be super tight while at others could sneak stuff past the band. I was even thinking about getting a fill. The problem with that thinking was I had wicked acid reflux at night because i was so hungry that I was compelled to eat at night (I did try in a not to successful way but the demons were really strong suckers). So i was worried i would completely mess things up with a fill. Well now that the water is gone my band is back to its expected behavior. I am perfectly restricted and my band is behaving as i have become accustomed. I can eat a reasonable amount and it stays in my pouch for a decent amount of time. I cannot fathom why being swelled up would loosen or make my band erratic and I wish some doctor could explain that one to me.

Perimenapause sucks...Did I say hormones enough in this post?

enough said.


Friday, January 28, 2011

Swelling Mystery not solved but treated

I saw the doctor today. She said that it is possible that my ankle swelling could come back (grrrrrrrr)...however after telling her all of the other issues (two period this month and other pre-period symptoms) she concluded that my ankle swelling was likely the result of evil estrogen. She fixed me up with a diuretic. I told her that I did not always get the quantity of water in that I should and did not want this diuretic to make the problem worse. She said that the particular drug she had chosen focused mainly on the badly located water not the water I would need (I don't know how but hey..if she says so) ;).

I got my pills at around 7. Took one and tadahh..I am a--peeing again. My ankle is still swollen a bit but better this evening from the last couple of days. In other related good scale read 167. If this water weighs enough I might actually recapture that goal weight that I popped away from over Christmas.

While in the office my doctor also checked my sore arm (poking the crap out of it actually) and wants me to go in for an xray. She thinks I might have damaged my radius in some way. I guess this will be a good excuse for my wimpiness over the last month but i am not sure that knowing that I broke it will be of much importance as It has already been a month and the healing I am sure has started.

My usual wonderful Friday was not to be today as Grace was home from school, I had the doctors appointment and then had to dash down to work for two meetings. The work meetings were on one hand good but on the other not so much. The first meeting was with my boss who talked about a bunch of stuff that I cannot put on here but he offered me extra hours for Spring term to teach an assessment and evaluation course (I do love to teach). This means that I will pop into full time benefit land and will get my medical and other benefits back (I sacrificed them when I quit my other job last Spring). The bad side is I have already committed to teach two classes at the community college. I believe this will pop me up to 1 and 1/2 full time (Probably not so wise). I will have to be super organized in order to keep sane I am sure. Thankfully the classes will be well timed, making the most of my time on either campus.

My second meeting followed. I got to work with my first advisee :) to help her get to work on her research project for her Master's degree. It was fun to dig into her data and help her figure out what she needed to do to analyze it for her final paper. It really highlights to me why i like to do my job..teaching and mentoring students. Tracking down data and sitting through meetings...not so much.

So..hopeful on the weightloss front., good and bad on the work front. and facing weekend...wahhooooooo :) Have a check at the previous post..I nominated a bunch of people with an award..


Wednesday, January 26, 2011

Award-but dont let that stop you from more shortbread recipes

I just received the wonderful stylish blogger award from Libby and Amber

I am supposed to list 7 obscure things about about myself and nominate 15 fellow bloggers that I love or have recently discovered.

1. I am compiling a list of shortbread recipes for a bake-off :) Keep the recipes coming. I don't even have to bake them as I am sure I can rope my husband into it.
2. I love fractions..they make me smile and are fun to teach.
3.prints scare me-I now own two dresses made from print-that is huge.
4. I haven't exercised seriously since I fell off my bike...Im skeered.
5. This is the longest I have ever kept up with a journal in any form (the longest other than this is about a week).
6. I get all excited about stuff and launch into it (like knitting, quilting, sewing, home-fix it, wood working,en garding and diets and exercise) but then tire easily and slack off when I either feel like I have mastered the skill or messed up the project I am working on. I think this personality trait is not good some of the time. The band has helped me not grow tired or give up when things got tough because I could always get a fill or change it up and make the pursuit new again.
7. I'm tongue tied. I cannot stick out my tongue or put it on the roof of my mouth. I discovered over Christmas break at the dentists that it can make getting a root canal much more painful.

The award now goes to:

1. Kellie-she is getting a fill today and needs the love.

2. Shannon-She is one of us proud over 300 club who is working her band (there are a bunch of us! and you can work it girl)

3. Cozy Coconut (what is your name?? it is driving me crazy to call you coconut give great restaurant recommendations and whats not to love about coconut!!

4. Amanda at Amanda's Waning-well She lives right down the freeway from me. She is wise and she rides her bike. These are all purely wonderful traits.

5. Caroline at Lonicera-The warmest hearted blogger who decorates her blog with
beautiful pictures. She is also part of my UK peeps!!

6. LindaBecause we are both moms who
want better for our kids.

7. Bunny-cause shes back and not giving up no matter how long it takes!

8. Justine-cause she is banded, is a UK peep, inspired me to multi-blog and likes her crafts.

9. Lyla-cause we both do the higher ed thing.

10. Read-she is really funny and brave enough to say things (that are totally true) that I am too skeered to say. umm...OOk I typed something here and erased it because really it may seem like I pretty much tell all but nope..i do filter..and I wish that I was braver not to. I also know she already got this award but..i am seconding it.

11. Allison She has scale wars and I know them well!! and she is also a UK peep!

12. TessieRose-The 48 blog and pics are everything I hope my 46, 47 and 48 is compared to my 40.

13. Sandie Lee-I hate bra shopping too!!! and thanks for the short bread recipe.

14. JacquieThe short bread recipe you provided was a hit at work today! and I ate wayyy too many. I have read your Journey from pre-band to now and wow you are working it!

15. Last but not least-Cara at the Dash. You have worked the band girl!! and come on..whats not to like about fractions?? :)

Now I am sitting here hoping the acid reflux I am having from the OJ (I thought it would go through faster than food!) will go away before I go horizontal.

Everyone is Important and Shortbread Responses

The Tattoo

That tattoo is a bit of expanding art. I believe I wrote about it last summer but cannot remember for sure. My first tattoo was the oil lamp-I got it to celebrate my Ph.D. in 2006. Many universities use this symbol to stand for love of learning. In 2010 I added to my tattoo when I hit two milestones almost simultaneously. I had a turtle added floating in smoke that comes out of the oil lamp. That piece was in celebration of losing 100 pounds. I really had no idea at the time that I would manage to lose 50 more! The turtle is somewhat tribal in design (turtles are an important folk animal in Southestern tribal tales) but also matches the ticker symbol for slow and steady wins the race that I have always had on my weightloss ticker.

Finally in answer to your questions-the words are in the Cherokee language. In 2010 my father and siblings registered for and were accepted into the Cherokee tribe. I had wanted to do so for some years but it took ages to convince my dad and get our paperwork in order. The words are in the Cherokee language. They are pronounced-NeeGAHD UhlSGAYduh and they mean: Everyone is Important.

Amanda-yes do keep me up to date on any band get togethers and I would LOVE LOVE LOVE a good shortbread recipe. I am willing to keep trying until I find a good one.

Tuesday, January 25, 2011

Answer to Caroline's Question and the Big Blow Up

Since my marriage to a UK citizen I have come to appreciate British STUFF. Caroline asked me a couple of posts ago what I particularly missed when I was home and not visiting. The things I have come to enjoy from the UK are: Chocolate, Fruit, magazines, yogurt, cream products, shortbread and Tesco's Trifle. Now as far as cheese goes...Grommet...I prefer mine cheap and American :) My cheese tastes have expanded over the past two years but we stock two kinds of cheese in our drawer. I have good old orange American style mild cheddar. David has his own boring old white and sharp British imported Cheddar.

Chocolate:Cadbury's fruit and nut (click on the words to see the price I pay) is my favorite but I will take any chocolate as long as it is not dark. I can get this here for a price and I pay that price. One has to be careful in purchasing though. The U.S. made Cadbury's chocolate is crap--tastes just like the hershey's wax pile that American cheap chocolate is. British or Cadbury's from the middle east is smooth and creamy. My number one favorite find in the UK is this.

Fruit: In December the fruit one can buy in the U.S. is just a waste of space. wimpy tasteless grapes that are often shriveled up. Soft mealy apples, tasteless strawberries. In the UK even at Tescos you can by sweet, crisp, large grapes that taste like summer. You can buy small UK grown strawberries that taste like June fresh from field strawberries. The bananas are creamy, Bramley apples are wonderfully tart and crsip (we don't even have those here)...I do not know where or what the growers are doing but ours are coming out of cold storage and do not taste good at all. I can only get this fruit when I visit. :(

Magazines: The first thing I do when I travel to Wales is go to Tescos and gaze and the huge racks of magazines. Grace has several good magazines (with learning value not just Disney movie stars) to choose from. I have several gardening, knitting, home decorating or even just multi-mix good housekeeping like ones to choose from. Best of all they are 2 and 3 pounds to buy. In the U.S. we don't have this many magazines to choose from and even in the few places where there are several they cost considerably more (I have seen 10 dollar magazine at the check-stand here).

Yogurt-The yogurt tastes better in the UK. They also have really funky and cool flavors like gooseberry and rhubarb. On my Tesco run I always pick up a 6 pack of funky flavored yogurt to eat with big crisp grapes for breakfast.

Cream Products-creme fresh, clotted cream, double cream, whipping cream, light cream. The cream variety is impressive. Although this is a cholesterol nightmare I love the cream products on a Victoria Sponge with strawberry jam or scones. We can only get half and half or heavy whipping cream-the rest I have to wait for.

Shortbread-Walkers is damn good and I can get it at our local import shop. it costs quite a bit but like the chocolate is worth the expenditure. We can make it but it is not the same (well we haven't found the recipe yet anyway

Tesco's trifle...berries, berry jello, sponge cake, birds custard and whipping cream...heaven in a fluted bowl. I can make this at home but have yet to match the perfect storm of jelled sweetness. I buy this on my first Tesco run.

Man o man I am glad we will be over soon :) July!! We are buying tickets either tonight or later this week. The dates are: July 2-August 6. I will be in and out on side trips but if any of you UK peeps want to meet up I am more than willing and excited in fact to make it happen. Name the pub and I will be there with bells on. to the blow up part: What do you call the opposite of a NSV? I am having a non-scale regression. One of my co-morbidities was edema. At 304 my ankles, especially my left ankle would swell up after a day's work, a trip, a day at my name it and my poor ankles and feet blew up like crazy. Until today I thought my weight loss had pretty much licked this problem. Sure on a vacation where we walked all day, I sat on an airplane for 24 hours and I didn't get any sleep my ankles would swell a little but this...this is extreme swelling. So much so that I will have bruises on my ankles over the next week or so. See picture-

Ignore the hairy legs (It is Winter after all!).

I am not sure if I should go to my GP or my lapband surgeon...I am not sure if I should go in at all. In my own non-doctory opinion I think this is being caused by my hormone messed up body (remember the two periods in a month thing? Well I am guessing I am facing another one any day now). I think it might also be from one night when I stayed up past midnight and then got up at 7am (I have done this post weight-loss before though without a problem). Basically it is a pain in the rear and disappointing as it was one of the major reasons I was scared to keep carrying around the weight. I was afraid that eventually my circulation would get so bad I would lose a foot. Now the fear..have I still lost that circulation? I would prefer to keep my feet thank you very much.

Sunday, January 23, 2011

Sunday Sunday

Sunday is open house day. Our real estate agent holds one every Sunday unless we beg off. It gets tiring sometimes to have to clean Saturday night and then do a mad floor clean and bathroom clean Sunday morning. We do not have a single morning a week where we just sleep in and laze about. We did it again today and went...

To our habitual Vietnamese lunch. Grace had the beef noodle soup (I had two slurps of the broth). David had the Thai curry (I had two bites of the sauce). I ordered crab/cream cheese waontons for all of us. I ate two and about died of feeling full. Hence only the bites from the meals I had planned on sharing. I was a tad sad but also really happy that my band seemed to be back to normal in its firm tightness that I like.

Shopping to Ross (local discount store). I tried on 15 dresses for my upcoming valentines day dance. I found one to wear! This really looks better in real life (in the picture I look way more thick in the waist and matronly). I do think I still need a new push-up bra!

plus a suit on the off chance that the job I applied for this week calls me for an interview. Note the single shoe-I bought this gray very cool pair of shoes back when I bought my boots. I have not yet worn them and now have the perfect suit to wear with them only a little problem has developed. One has gone missing. I have looked and cannot find it. Very annoying.

We went over the Bed Bath and Beyond and got some steak knives. The steak last night was such a hit we decided that we needed steak knives to help Grace actually cut her own. We are planning on this dish once a week.

We did some other shopping and buying (big pot for my upcoming birthday party event) and some shoes for David, a sweater for Grace and some clogs too. Instead of eating out (totally what we would have done before) we came home to cook up the planned mizithra and browned butter linguine. It was divine and my lunch time tight band was quite pleasant allowing just short of a cup to slide through.

Tomorrow it is back to the work week slog...I love the weekend.



1. I think my 4th grade daughter is hitting puberty and if this i sign of things to come I am very afraid. That girl has a mouth...We are working on it. I am planning on contractual goal setting, rewards and consequences. I have never been very good with follow through. Wish me luck!!

2. Today was a pretty good food day (minus the 1/2 price British Cadbury's had at our local British grocery store). I skipped breakfast and coffee (when you punish your child sometimes you get punished too). We were supposed to get the coffee before her knitting class but we were late because she refused to get dressed. We were supposed to go after but miss lippy lip got lippy and I had to remove the reward. We had scrambled eggs for lunch at home instead. Those eggs held on in my stomach really well.
mid-afternoon brought the chocolate (Grace was gone and I could have a well-deserved treat to reward myself for my difficult morning). I had a coffee drink at Costco in the afternoon. and then dinner was medium cooked steak and a tablespoon each of cooked spinach and mushrooms. Tonight I did have a bit more chocolate and a British style cookie. This is all probably more than what I ate during my peak losing phase but better than what I have been eating since before Christmas. I still do think I might need a fill but I am going to tough it out for a while and see how much self-control I can exert and whether the tight loose thing stabilizes.

3. I looked at protein powder and bought some protein bars. Still not sure if that is the answer or not.

4. We did a crud-load of shopping. It took us four grocery stores to get all of what we needed. Now I ask is shopping different from when we had a green grocer, a butcher and a baker??? I still have to schlep around just now I have a car and miles in between them. Question though--David didn't know the answer to this one. When we just shopped from specialty store to specialty store..which one sold the toilet paper? hmmmmmmmmm :) Out here in the states I have always shopped at a supermarket. David grew up with the triple local specialty shopping. I pine for those days sometimes. While shopping we counted the amount of pre-packaged items our cart contained-we are now down to 3 (raisin bran-that I do not eat), protein bars (I do eat sometimes), bread (I do eat). We debated whether canned tomatoes and lunch meat counted. We also debated whether flavored yogurt did. Not bad really though considering our cart was filled with fruits and vegetables. We shunned the rest of the meat to get it organic.

5. I did not check my computer all day! it was liberating. Instead I knitted, talked to humans face to face and did some more spinning. My Welsh Highland sheeps wool is now yarn. I still smells like the Newport train station.

6. I have eaten in the evening again (chocolate and the cookie..I am afraid about acid indigestion in bed tonight).

7. I love weekends..even when Grace is a poop. Honestly tonight was fine-I think our joint consistency and individualized attention for a day was effective. Long may it last.

Well I'm off to bed..Happy Sunday!


Friday, January 21, 2011

Friday is Thinking Day

Thanks for the comments yesterday! I do go back and forth wondering if my band is too tight. Here the problem though-it was not too tight when I was 163 and i made this 168 pound situation. I hate to get an unfill only to need a refill in a few short weeks. I have thought about going back to basics (basically similar to the 5 day pouch test). In the past when I have irritated my band I do a day of soups and liquids then hard core protein first, veg second and carb last (which means no carb because i do not have room). I also had a look at the protein supplements at the grocery store yesterday. This summer I threw out my protein powder (two years old!!) and stopped eating any protein bars. I had really stopped using them but I wonder if I don't need to re-institute some protein laden items to get back on track.

Today I am having soup for lunch followed by a crazy day of school pick up (Grace is back at school and lice free so far), horseback riding, an evening meeting for me and then bunco tonight. I am sure I will be late to at least two of the above events :)


Thursday, January 20, 2011

What I have been thinking-What I have been doing in pics.

The fingerless gloves before I threaded the hangy down ends to the inside. I know one pair arrived but have not heard whether the other two have made it to their destinations yet. I am working on a pattern for you.

David bought me a spinning wheel for Christmas. It is fun! I have already spun two tops (looks like unspun but clean and dyed wool). I then knitted the home-made yarn into a large chunky cowl.

On the topic of weight...I am having a bit of a crisis still. I have definitely developed a belly roll. My eating volume is way up. I am starving at night but tight during the day. I can only eat 1/2 cup of food but it goes through my band sometimes quickly sometimes not. I ate quite a bit at night over the weekend and after we got back. I have suffered from four nights of pretty bad reflux. My poor brain is getting mixed messages-I am too I am too loose. My desire to eat is way up..WAY WAy up...I don't know if I did not deal with my eating problems like I thought I did or if I am getting some sort of a rebound affect after hitting goal. I am doing lots of thinking...This winter rainy/cold weather just does not help any of it.


Tuesday, January 18, 2011

MAN o MAN I was on a Food Fest Weekend!

We are home and work and drudgery are back in full force. I am extra tight today (good thing) and back on track (finally) after this long run Christmas and beyond eating feast. I ate well over the weekend but got stuck twice. The first was in the car after eating lunch from the local grocery store and the second was after lunch and back in the car on our drive home from Seattle.

Hmm..did you notice a trend and long ago learned (whoops did I forget?) lesson. Do not eat while driving in the CAR!!! yup I didn't learn it and spend a considerable amount of time doubled over a bag unstickifying first a chicken dumpling and some kettle corn and then some lovely cheesy pasta from the Pink Door (yes we followed your recommendation Cozy Coconut and found the place).

So anyway...I just reread the last post and man o man was it all about the food. I did feel like we did a lot of thinking about and eating food this weekend. We did however walk a lot, shop a lot, and look around the Seattle Science Museum. My only purchase was a new coat. it is a ski jacket style sized XL boys! yes..i fit my gained-5-pounds-self into child's clothing. wahhooooo. This is especially sweet given that at my largest weight I wore a size xxl mens. I was greatful for it over the weekend as it had a nice hood when we hit windy and rainy streets along the farmers market.

On the lice front-I have been combing Grace two and three times a day and thought we were in the clear but tonight I found three tiny little suckers with the comb. The comb is so good in fact that David has spent the evening trolling British National Archives using some reference numbers off the comb and is asking them to send him an estimate to get copies of the documents. He is hoping for a set of plans so he can get more made. I am telling you they would be a gold mine in this country as Portland is rampant with lice and the combs available in Oregon are criminal setting up a permanent supply chain of living lice.

so...not my favorite start to a work week but restriction is back on track. Phew...perhaps I can have a visit down in the 160's again.


Sunday, January 16, 2011

Seattle Fun

We are having a great time...more fun than I remember having before in Seattle ever before. After getting the combing out of the way (all is clear for two comb through sessions) we drove up with a stop at Caballas (For those unfamiliar a huge outdoors/hunting store). Although in description it seems like a giant man store it is kind of cool with unusual items of interest.

We then drove to our hotel (the cedarbrook lodge). It was not too expensive as hotels go but it is very nice with free snacks, post and beam construction and modern designed rooms. After arriving I asked the desk clerk if it would be difficult to get dinner and he it would be fine. So we go off and drag our stuff to our room and moved the car. We then proceeded to go to dinner only to find out that they had no tables (apparently the desk clerk was clueless). The hostess was nice and set us up with two sofa's and a coffee-like table. We had to order off the bar menu but it was good. I had a mixture of local cheeses, a whole grain piece of bread and two berry chutneys. I had a bit of the cheeses and one of the small pieces of breat (about 1/4 of a piece) plus tastes of the chutney. The free snacks include small containers of Haagan Daz ice cream and malted milk balls. I had one ice cream and some of the candies way too late and paid the consequences with mild acid reflux all night.

This place also serves a free breakfast (a bit better than the old Holiday Inn express type fare but not as good as German or Dutch places. I had Oatmeal with home-made granola and nuts. I only managed 1/4 of a cup and a bit of a not very nice pastry. After breakfast we took off downtown to pick up our Harry Potter tickets and then walked to the Pike Place Market to hang out for the day. We did really well (and did check out the Pink Door but they were closed for lunch). We had coffee at the first Starbucks and then lunch at the Pike Place Bistro (fish and chips for me, crab sand for David and Clam Chowder for Grace). After lunch we did a bit of touristy shopping when strangely a fire broke out in a restaurant at the market. We left (David had visions of tube fires and figured we should steer clear). We walked up to the monorail and went into the Seattle Science Center early, looked around a bit and then went into the Harry Potter exhibit.

The exhibit was quite good. The props were interesting to look at..and the clothes were so small! :). Hagrid's clothes were on the other hand quite big (they were mocked up to look like his 1/2 giant stature. The exhibit was good but not worth the 30 dollar per adult entrance fee. The gift shop was crazy expensive.

IN all we went in at 4:15 and were done by 5. It was not a good value for money. Dinner on the other hand was delicious. We went to a place near the Seattle Center called the Tillicum Place Cafe. I had home-made Pate with toasted baguette slices. Grace and David had duck with cabbage and spitzel. Dinner for both of us felt very German (Good German)..the music was Spanish and then we had a small sample of cookies for desert that were very Italian. It was quite the place and the international dinner tour.

AFter dinner we drove back to our hotel to chill for the rest of the evening. I was supposed to meet an old friend I grew up with but I think he is chickening out (too bad too because I looked good today..goodness knows if I can do that two days in a row :).

We don't have plans tomorrow...who knows :) more shopping probably.


Friday, January 14, 2011

Head Lice AGAIN!

After a very busy week I was looking forward to a nice leisurely weekend away. We are headed to Seattle tomorrow afternoon. Well-Grace was doing a bit more head scratching than normal. I gave her head a check (as any parent of a youngish child has to do these days)...for the umpteenth time the girl has headlice again. I have to be grateful that we have had a year and a half break from the evil beasts.

We don't have any trouble getting rid of them (lots of combing with the magical family heirloom comb from the early 1900's that David's mum gave it to us). I have probably written about this before but the combs they make today are ineffective and have teeth that are too far apart to get the eggs and small bugs properly. This English made hand cut comb works well and we will have to guard it carefully for generations to come (such a state of affairs that I have become a lice comb connoisseur).

We are still going to Seattle as we have booked a hotel that we would pay for regardless. We are attending the Harry Potter show that has gotten good reviews. Poor Grace will have to be combed within an inch of her life tomorrow before we go and then again repeatedly before and after going out in public. My plan is to get her an array of hats and her own pillow with several pillow cases along for the ride.

Hopefully I will get lots of walking in and get shove some of these pounds off.


Thursday, January 13, 2011

Is Fungry a Word?

Lets just say I am at this very moment--at 11pm at night--fungry. I will let you figure out what the f means and what it is replacing. Can ya guess? What is wrong here?

The scale read 168.6 this morning. This is down (insert here whatever entity you thank when good things happen).

I will not eat...I will not eat...I will not eat..I will not eat...I think I need a fill...I will not eat...I will not eat.

I uploaded and saw my I am back for a quick update.

An added bit of gloom to motivate me away from feeding the fungries. A check with MR Weight tracker informed me that the last time I weighed 168 was the end of AUGUST! Yes you are reading the blog of a girl who undid 4 months of work in 3 weeks. In August, weighing in at 168 I was just about to cycle (my husband says 32 miles and I remember 24-yes we did just have a little discussion about distance inflation) a bunch of miles. I think I can keep the fungries at a distance now and just go to bed.

Wednesday, January 12, 2011


I am a critical person-I am sure a read back in time will show this. I don't really think this means I am a negative or mean spirited. It does mean that I look at stuff with a critical detailed eye and try to figure out the effective areas and the room in which improvements can be made. This is probably why I do the job that I do.

All week you have seen the whining and the analyzing as I work through this life I am trying to figure out as 'goal' or above 'goal' or whatever. What follows are, I am sure, the beginning of a few ramblings about living goal.

1. A goal is something you hit..not necessarily someplace you stay. I have decided that my weight has never been stable. Expecting it to hit 264 or 263 and stick there forever is a tad unrealistic. Then the question that follows in my head is..what is realistic? My husband and kids and friends all say that if anything it looks like I have lost weight not gained the five pounds the scale tells me is hanging back on my carcass. Do I care...well I am critical so yes..yes I do care. I can feel a few difference in my clothes. I don't know what realistic is. I do know that going over 170 freaks the heck out of me (I stepped on the scale fully clothes last night and it read 171..I am about lost it. I quickly stripped and it dropped to 169..sigh). So 170 is an upper bound. I imagine 164 is a safe bound but heck...163 was a low point so I am not sure that is realistic.

2. I know exercise is key but Winter is kicking my ass. I have been listening to my body and trying to convince it to exercise and eat better. I am sluggish and craving carbs like crazy...Is this a Winter problem? A fill problem? A lack of vitamin D problem? My body fighting to get fat again? Probably all of the above.

3. I have hooked myself back onto the coffee is time to get off and start drinking the tea set up I have ready to go at work. My little un fill episode over said tea has had the effect of causing me to avoid it (after all it is not really as tasty as the evil caloric coffee I drink).

4. This new phase is more about balancing than pushing to lose. in a way it is just as difficult as losing because although you get the really great aspects of feeling like you look good and buying new clothes all of that comes with change. I had the pushing down the scale game mostly figured out...but maintaining takes finesse and a changed strategy. I obviously don't know what that strategy is and I didn't plan ahead for this.

ON a side note I had a friend invite David and I to a Valentines weekend dance. It will be my first real opportunity to dress up post band. I need a dress! For the first time ever I am kind of looking forward to this shopping trip. I think my first stop will be some new skin holding spanx...After that...well I am not sure if I should go for color or black, long? short? swirly, figure hugging? eek :) I Will keep you posted

Tuesday, January 11, 2011


I am home early this evening because although I started class this evening the freezing rain started coming down. 3 minutes after I told my students to leave and go home (after giving out homework assignments) the school message system texted me stating that school was immediately closed. After a little bit tense ride home (not too bad but people really are stupid when they drive!!)I have arrived in time to see my sick husband and daughter moaning about how sick they feel.

they are man sick..and child sick. I of course had the very same illness last week but went to work, hauled kids around and functioned with only a little bit of whining :)

My band is still driving me nutty-I was hungry this morning. I was Starving hungry at lunch and then ended up pb-ing part of a coffee in the afternoon. I am now eating some leftover chicken and wine ala Julia Child (translate that French but i cannot spell it so avoided). I have managed about 1/4 cup and am feeling distinctly full. Who knows what is going on. Today's menu:

8:30 am Breakfast: one tall nonfat peppermint mocha no whip, four shortbread cookies (over the course of the morning). 12:30-Lunch: 1/2 turkey reuben and a pickle (I ate the pickle first and it went down fine). I believe I wrote an ode to this Reuben a few months ago). 4:00 midafternoon snack: 1/2 nonfat peppermint mocha and then a return of said peppermint mocha. 7:30 Dinner: 1/4 cup of leftover chicken and wine. I will try and eat more but it is not looking too promising-well that could be a good thing or a bad thing.


Monday, January 10, 2011

Fun and Games With the Band?

My band and my weight are really messed up. I hit a rebound weight of 170 last night. It was 169 in the morning and I am not one bit happy about it. My so called guilt free Christmas is no longer guilt free.

David and I talked about our whole family health goals for the year and this whole weight gain over Christmas thing. We both concluded that lack of activity over the vacation contributed as much as the food to our weight gain. Just the one day readout from the pedometer-1860 on a vacation day vs. 5000 on a work day and finally yesterday I wore it while we ran around town and I ended up at 3000. It is interesting the difference between the readings and to note how the lack of activity can add up over time. We discussed solving our problem but didn't really come up with any answers. It is flipping freezing outside (and seems like always inside too). We hesitate to join a gym as we always go for a short period and then waste our money plus the one we would join is super expensive and would do some damage to the money saving goals.

In addition to the exercise failings my band has been weird. tight in the morning (until today) and then loose in the evening. I have restriction OK while I am eating but the food moves on through pretty fast and I am soon seeking out more meals. Yesterday was a decent day at least because when I was hungry I ate least chose somewhat nutritious foody items when I snacked instead of crapity crap. Breakfast-2 inch square of left over fruit cake (I threw away the rest to end the temptation). 2pm-nonfat peppermint mocha and entire bowl of Starbucks Oatmeal (been more than a year since I could do this). raisin bread with cream cheese 3 goldfish, 1/2 cup rice and chicken curry, another 1/2 cup of rice with salt and pepper, 15 pretzel sticks dipped in fresh ground peanut butter.

Today-I was hungry when I got up at 7:30 and went straight for some apple cinnamon cheerios. Now I do occasionally have a yen for cereal (not usually in the morning) and when I do I usually try to eat it. The difference today is most of the time I get in about two bites and soon realize that cereal does not go down well and I have to stop. Today I ate the whole 1/2 cup serving of the things. I guess I am going to have to pay more attention to this thing and perhaps go back in for my fill back. You would think that with an extra 5 pounds on my carcass that I would get tighter not looser. Its a weird weird thing.

I hate Winter!!! I think the seasonal affective disorder is setting in . I am tired and all I want to do i eat or sleep. I definitely do not want to work or get up and move. sigh. I want some sun but right now if we get sun it comes with bone chilling cold. Can I just go back to sleep until Spring?


Friday, January 7, 2011

The goods and an evening of craftiness-

My husband bought me a spinning wheel for Christmas...tonight I took a lesson and now I am a spinning queen...two spools are filled and before bedtime I am going to fill a third.

I finished up the second black fingerless glove tonight so tomorrow is mailing day!! pics to follow:

Thursday, January 6, 2011

Hormone Hell

Apparently my body forgot that I already had my period this month. Instead of ovulation I am apparently having another. Goodness knows what is going on but on one hand the 5 pounds I gained over Christmas are quickly dropping again with some of the water. On the other hand...I am tired because I rolled into horrible sleep patterns while on vacation. I did not eat properly and am worn down and am now full on back to the crazy work schedule an don't have time to deal with the added fatigue, grouchiness, band tightening, and pre-planning a period brings. ....I cannot decide if a series of cuss marks or self-pity is more appropriate here.

On a good note I had a bit of a NSV today..only I am not sure if it is related to my weightloss or if it is related to my continuing maturity or if it is related to the shot of testosterone that i am sure is hitting my system (given the wacky period thing). I have been working on conference presentation proposals for one of the grants I work on at the university. My science counterpart wrote a third one. We spent all day today finalizing the work and doing the always required cutting to make it exactly the right length to fit in the proposal formats. I have put forth at least two full days work on these things. Right before we went to upload them to the system we found out we needed to register for the conference first.

My colleague called our boss to tell him that we would need to register and to make sure that was OK. Said boss told her that there would only be room for one of us to go to the conference because he and the other lead organizer for the grant would need to go and one of our other (pain in my side irritating colleagues who rarely does her job) colleagues had already (without permission) registered herself to go to this conference. Well..the two of us were the only two flipping people who had done any work to earn a trip to this conference and we wrote the proposals with quite some effort. Needless to say we were fuming mad.

OK now here is the NSV part-instead of being upset and crumbling into a crying mess or avoiding the whole confront the boss scenario I got mad too!! like really mad..not mad crying or mad sad..really angry mad. My colleague and I marched over to our boss's office and pulled him out of a meeting (I did that part) and I forced him to made a decision. He sent the offending colleague over to check the budget and I responded by saying I could not wait around for that to happen and needed to go off to my other job but if I was not registering to go I would not be uploading the proposals I had written..(like all firm and clearly in one of those I am in control and mad as hell at this ridiculous situation)...

I am sure that many of you will think this is a perfectly appropriate and normal way to handle this situation....but this...was huge for me. I do not and have never confronted well or been able to handle any feelings of anger well. I have ALWAYS cried when I was mad....Whatever the reason...whatever the cause I have been wishing to be able to do this my whole life and hated the old crying thing. 47 has been a very good year for me....:).

wow it just occurred to me that this huge event even happened while having my period and super tired and was the perfect storm of danger and I did not crack. It has to be testosterone don't you think? Maybe I am growing man bits down there even :)hehe



Wednesday, January 5, 2011

Sometimes Super Low-tech Is Better

Last night my mother-in-law checked on her return flight to the UK only to find that they had somehow in the last month messed up her reservation. The airlines story is that they emailed us in november..oh wait no they didn't they called us yesterday..nope we did not receive either message and thankfully we figured it out before showing up at the airport an hour after the changed flight was scheduled to go out. I am especially annoyed because I found and purchased her flights so that she could have a break in Chicago, had an easy trek to the international connection and was the shortest possible total trip time. I paid 200 dollars more for these tickets. What we ended up with was a connection in San Francisco, leaving an hour earlier and arriving three hours later than the other flight. My poor mother in law had to walk at least a mile across the San Francisco airport and go out and then back through security.

We of course found all of this out from a guy on the phone after finally calling him when the computer did not provide any information and it appeared that she had no flight at all to go home on. I think I miss the days when you called a person and received a paper ticket.

Moan two-

I was wearing my freebie pedometer to work again today to see what my half day steps count up to when it went flying off of my belt loop. the battery went one way and the pedometer went another. I wish there was a mechanical one I could get that would not fall apart....some days I love my technology and some days it is just a pain in the rear.


Tuesday, January 4, 2011

Cool Thing You Might Want to Try

I have heard about pedometers in the past and have even put one on a time or two but during Christmas break I tried a little experiment that revealed some information that makes this math nerd's heart go pitter patter...and might even pique your interest a touch.

On one day during vacation I walked 1860 steps. Today on a working day and being mindful that I could add a step or two while I walked around campus and in the classroom while I was teaching I walked 4935 steps. If the pedometer is correct (and as it was a freebie from a Greek yogurt company it might not be). I walked from my car across campus and to the departments other offices twice then went and taught my first class of the term at the community college. They moved my class and it is now a smallish trek away from my office. That is more than twice as much exercise as when I have a day off.

In other news (but related I think) I have now officially gained just under 5 pounds over vacation. Yup I ate and drank well...and I am paying the price for my indulgences. I am going to keep on with the pedometer experiment. It is kind of a low tech way of increasing my activity..not bad for free :)

note---I am lame...the goal prize drawings have not been mailed yet. I am working on the second (and last) black fingerless glove and as I am a batch kind of girl they will all go to the post office together.

the glove making has been fun!! :) I hope you don't look too closely as I can see all of the mistakes and they bug the crap out of me.


Sunday, January 2, 2011

Filling My Blank Sheet of Paper Part 2

I went back to January 1, 2010 (I love blogging for this reason!-I actually have a record of my dieting life now!). Below is that post-I am adding in bolded bits to discuss my progress and 2011 plans.

Happy New Year and New Decade. After reading Simone's (The Bottom of the Ironing Basket) post this morning I am inspired to plan how I am gong to fill my brand new yearly inspired blank sheet of paper for the second year.

Food and exercise not weight loss: This last year went very well in the dieting department. I would like to continue the weight loss but now start feeding my whole family in a much healthier way. In the last few months we have begun to eat at home more. This has had a tremendous effect on our budget but now I need to view it in terms of health. I also want to get all of use doing more exercise related activities together. I have started getting on my bike (although not often enough). It is time we all started exercising. We did a little geocaching a few months ago and enjoyed it and there is no reason we could not do more.

Well in this I would say we were the most successful. We hardly eat out and we have drastically improved the quality of food we eat. So much so, in fact that David ground some fresh organic turkey and beef on our own (insuring the best quality meat we can get at this point). I grew my yearly garden and ate out of it even preserving some of the vegetables. There is still room for progress. We still eat way too many sweets and need to shift to eating less carbohydrates and more protein as a whole family. I now consider myself a bike rider and exerciser. I now miss activity. I have stayed at home a lot over the Christmas holiday and was just asking David today to hook my bike up to the trainer that is sitting collecting dust in the garage. Grace, David and I rode on our area trails and roads but have more room to activate our lives.

Budget: We have been crap with our money. We have separate bank accounts and I have paid attention to mine but never the bank account that gets the day to day expenses. Yesterday I went though it and found that we make stupid amounts of transactions the fill up pages with 2.00 here and there. We also have some expenses that need attending to (verizon was one big one!!). David and I think we can cut some expenses on our cell phones and eating out. I think I can tighten up grocery expenses. We have a less expensive store near our house that annoys us so we have not gone opting for the more expensive but less crowded store. We are gong to bite the bullet and put up with people standing in aisles to save the money. We are also going on a budget with a weekly allowance each in cash. Hopefully this will cut down on the starbucks with a card runs. David and I want to visit the UK in the summer and I want a new couch. Hopefully stopping the frittering away of money will make those two goals more easily attainable.

The budgeting has been up and down. We have months where we are excellent and others not so much. I managed to get my new couch but we could not afford the summer trip to the UK. We are hoping this summer will be the one. We dropped cable and changed our phone plan. We dropped our cell costs and then upped them again (so hard to resist fancy cell phones). Our grocery budget is much improved as we take care to eat in and buy good foods but save them in the freezer instead of letting them go to waste. We can still improve on this area! We are not very self disciplined when we want something and we do not set a good example for Grace and need to be mindful of the messages she gets from us.

Work: I have to decide what I want. Do I want a tenure track job? Do I want to take on several part time jobs allowing more flexibility at home? Do I want to retire (and am I willing to make the sacrifices necessary for that?). Can I even decide what I want given the children I have who need me to pay for their college tuition?

Again progress but no decisions. I changed jobs, I ended up working three part time jobs mostly because the opportunities presented themselves to me. Retirement still entices me but I don't think I can afford the help my daughters with college tuition if I am not earning any income. I had a great part-time summer and really enjoyed it. I really do not know what I want to do when I grow up still. sigh...definitely need to keep working on this one.

Time: I need to learn how to plan and execute my time in a more organized way. When I am working I need to work. When I am home on weekends I need to stop work from bleeding over into family time. When I am spending my leisure time I need to spend it mindfully and give my daughters and sometimes husband :) focused attention not a quick glance and comment from behind a computer or away from the TV or from the kitchen or or or.

Again-improvements here. I took weekends off and did a much better job of separating my leisure time from my work time. What I have still failed miserably at is to stop letting myself be distracted when I am working. I spend a lot of time getting nothing done it seems. This definitely needs work still.

Arts and Crafts: Sewing the pajama bottoms made me realize that I miss my arts and crafts time. Since 1999 I shifted my focus from leisure to starting and finishing a Ph.D. I have finished that and I need to refocus at least some of my time on things I like to do. Grace would love to sew and craft with me and I need to make the time to sew, quilt, knit, and bead. The good news is that I have a decked out sewing room in which to do this. All I have to do is go in there and get started.

I have really improved in this area. The time off I had during the summer and this Christmas break were largely spent crafting and pursing non-work passions. I have knitted, painted, sewn, ridden my bike, ridden a horse, gardened and volunteered to write for my local paper....definitely an expanded creative life.

So although I am not going to call these New Years resolutions in a sense they are. I have always had a simple resolution in the past. It was lose weight. I never really planned how I would accomplish the weight loss goal and until I got the lapband I had very little success at it from year to year. Something else I have noticed this year is that with the weight loss goal getting accomplished I have other personal failings rising to the surface that I am now paying attention to. A lot of those listed above contributed to the vicious circle of weight gain and failed weight loss. I am hoping this blog post and additional off post planning will help me succeed and truly making changes in my life.

On a final note: I had a horrible dream last night that I lost my restriction and discovered that I had really not changed any of my habits at all and bounced right back to my original weight in rapid speed. I am really afraid that this is correct. I am planning on making broad changes to how I live my life in 2010 to insure that even if I have glitches with the band my lifestyle changes will at least temper the damage that could be caused by band blips.

I think that this goal setting is effective and that I was right when I said that I had always made resolutions but never really thought about or planned how I would accomplish them. This year I changed how I lived...really pretending to be the person I wanted to be. It has been effective and will continue to do so as I decide exactly who I am and want to be. The biggest difficulty I find is part of who I want to be largely involves my family and if they are not on board with the plan it is very difficult to 'make' them change. I will continue to work on my own stuff but I would like to get my husband to work with me on some of them (not sure if this is even a good idea much less doable).

So the broad categories:

Career-Need to figure it out!
Time-Still problematic. I can now take time off but need to work effectively and in an organized way.
Budget-still need to work on this one.
Family fitness-good start refinement needed.
Craft-excellent progress. I need to keep making time for it.

Saturday, January 1, 2011

Happy New Year One and All

Well the clock has ticked to midnight and I am going to bed. For the first time ever we had a quiet evening at home with no guests, no parties. I enjoyed it a lot! David made a plate of cheeses for dinner and Cinda brought over a few pastries she made today to take to her party.

Last year I wrote down my new year's resolutions and I, for the most part kept them. I am ruminating on next years...I think they will be much the same but I am quite pleased at our progress and will do a proper job of reflecting and projecting tomorrow! This quiet leisure at home stuff is exhausting :)