Monday, June 23, 2014
I have been procrastinating writing my blog assignment for Week 3's BSG Challenge, but then I have been slightly busy taking care of my dh as he recuperates from his second knee replacement surgery last Tuesday. Shhhhh...don't tell him I posted these pics that I took "on the sly!" He would kill me if he knew! LOL
We had originally planned on leaving our new Florida home for the summer and travel north in our RV to see family and friends in Pennsylvania and also vacation in Maine for a few weeks, as we have done in previous years. But sometimes things just don't turn out the way you expect or wish. It's more important to me to have Dave's knees healed so that he can do all the active things with me that we used to do - mostly taking walks and hikes together. We still hope to head up north, but it probably won't be until mid-August and we then plan on coming back in mid-October. It looks like we won't be able to go to Maine, since it's more important for me to spend time with my parents in PA. It will be so nice to be with them and my son and lots of my friends - I miss them so much!
On the other hand, I really can't complain too much about being here in Florida. Yes, it's really hot and humid here in the summer and we've been experiencing thunderstorms just about every day. We are now staying inside in the AC during the day and can't enjoy our lanai. But... after a few days of me being "on call" to help Dave out throughout the day since he's been home from the hospital, I can now escape the house for a couple hours -to take my morning walk and to go to a social or play a game at the recreation center. In a few weeks Dave will be well enough for us to go out to dinner and take golf cart rides through the villages in the evenings. Some days I still can't get it through my head that this gorgeous community is my home!
Here are a few pictures from my morning walk last week. The first two are the sandhill cranes I saw walking across the street in front of me, just down the street from our house.
Here are some pictures at the town square, where my walking buddy, Kathy and I walk to each morning. It's peaceful to be there before all the stores and restaurants open. It can be really crowded later on, as they have entertainment there each evening.
So, no sightseeing trips for us this summer, but there will be other years for that. I am okay with my "different kind of summer!"
Sunday, June 15, 2014
My blog assignment for Week 2 of the A&I BSG challenge is about Father's Day: How will you spend Father's Day? Do you have any special plans?
Write a blog about your father, special memories, etc.
Well, I better get to it, before the day is over! LOL
Since we are still in Florida, and my dad and son are in PA, it doesn't really feel like Father's Day here, except for phone calls and photos I put on Facebook. Our son, Sean called Dave this morning, and I called my dad. They are all getting together at my parents' house for dinner. I wish I could be there, but in another month and a half we will be there in our RV for about two months, so I am looking forward to that, and don't feel too badly about it.
Dave is getting his second knee replacement on Tuesday, so we only have two days left for him getting out and about till he is in the hospital for three days and then homebound for about two weeks, except for going out for his PT. We are going out to dinner with our neighbors this evening, so that will be very nice. We just got back from going to our RV to load some things in there, while he can still lift heavy stuff and get up the steps.
Back to my dad...I have so many wonderful memories of him - he's such a great man! I am so grateful that he is still alive and a special part of my life! I can't be there physically right now, but I talk to him just about every day and give him big hugs through the phone lines. He is 84 right now and although he is doing fine for the most part physically, his mental faculties are deteriorating gradually with dementia, and he was just told by his doctor that he cannot drive anymore. This upset him quite a bit, and I feel so bad for him. The hardest part for me, I think is to see him more confused, not able to do the things he was able to do before. He's always been a proud man, and I feel for him as he feels a loss of dignity.
To honor him, I am going to post a few of my favorite pictures of my dad to share a little about what makes him so special to me.
There are lots of pictures of me as a child back in PA, but this is the only one I could find of him and me when I was little...we had such big snows!
Here I am with him when he walked me down the aisle...I still remember how nervous and proud he was!
Here are a few of the many silly pics I have of my dad. He always would clown around and make us laugh!!
Most of my pictures are of my dad with my son. Sean calls him Epop (a story I don't have time to share now.) They have had such a connection from the time Sean was born. Sean is still close to him today. They both are "die hard" Philadelphia sports fans and watch the games together...Sean lives 5 minutes away and goes to their house a lot. I am so thankful they are close!
Dad LOVED to mow the lawn, and it was hard to give that up recently.
My dad in his "Archie Bunker chair" taking care of Sean when he was sick!
This is a Phillies game we went to a couple years ago. My sister and her family were there, too. We used to go to Phillies games a lot when I was a teenager.
This is my favorite picture of my dad and me in recent years. I went over to help him shovel a BIG snow, and we had a blast together!
My mom and my dad are so close to each other! I don't know what one will do when the other is gone! I feel so fortunate to have seen such love between a man and wife!
Here is one of my favorite pictures from a few years ago, when we spent Father's Day at my sister's house.
Finally, these are two of the most recent pics of my dad that I have. The first one is he and my mom visiting us at the campground while we are living in our RV last summer.
The second one was when I took them out to breakfast. My dad's favorite meal is breakfast and I have many fond memories of going out to a diner for breakfast with my parents. I still do it when I get together with them.
Thanks so much for sharing my "dad memories" with me!
Thursday, June 05, 2014
One of my goals for last month and this month is to blog more often. I have seen some people write blogs each day and wonder how they do it! Last week I tried it and it was pretty tough coming up with something different to write each day. So I don't know how long I will be able to make this work. I may not do it daily, but I am going to focus on the things I have to be grateful for in my days. I have so many blessings, but sometimes challenges take over the mind. Writing the positives down, just like I used to in a gratitude journal years ago will help me focus on all that I have to be thankful for!
I am grateful for an awesome morning walk with my walking buddy, Kathy! She is a wonderful friend...we've been walking together for six months now, and time just flies by when we are talking! She couldn't go as long today, but it was a good 45 minute, 2.5 mile walk on a beautiful June day in Florida!
I am grateful and proud of myself for making it to Day 11 on my 10,000 + step streak! I actually did over 15,000 steps today, as I got up to walk around the house throughout the day. I put on some music and got up to dance and use my step on a few songs, as I was going through paperwork this afternoon.
I am grateful that my dad was doing better than I expected when I talked to him today. Yesterday he found out he has skin cancer (squamous cell carcinoma) and will go to a dermatologist to get it removed. I am thankful that they caught it early and this type is unlikely to spread internally. The doctor also told him during his visit that he cannot drive anymore, due to his dementia. He took it hard, but today he wasn't as angry, so I am hopeful that he will cope with this change in his independence.
I am grateful that my ds lives close to my parents and visits them regularly to keep them company, as I am many states away and can't be with them for two more months. He loves them dearly and has always been close to them. He and my dad love watching baseball together...they are die-hard Phillies fans! He was there tonight, and he helped my mom find an email I had sent her.
I am grateful that I am getting on more of a schedule with my retirement. I made a weekly to-do list with chores and outings, and I am making sure that I do a balance of activities each day. I could spend way too many hours on the computer, so I am becoming more disciplined.
I am grateful for being able to spend quality time with my dh. Tonight was a beautiful night, so after we came back from taking our Jeep to get serviced, we jumped in the golf cart and then went to dinner at a Chinese restaurant. I went over my calories from my choices, but I thoroughly enjoyed what I ate, and will get back on track tomorrow. After dinner, we went to the square and walked around in a shop and then sat on the bleachers to listen to the band and watch people dance. When we got back home, we sat out on the lanai and watched the CMA awards together, while I was doing some sparking.
I am so grateful for my many special friends, who give me encouragement, love and support. I texted several friends tonight, I received my first Summer Buddy letter from a SparkTeam, and I communicated with several friends on SP through challenge teams, goodies, email, and blogs!
Tuesday, June 03, 2014
May was a successful month for me in a lot of ways. I continued to release pounds, going from 193.8 to 187.4 (today's weigh-in.) I made my goal of losing 5% of my weight for the Spring 5% challenge, so I was very happy about that. I continued to eat well, limiting processed ďwhiteĒ carbs, although I occasionally let myself have a little treat, not as strict as I was in April, but not going crazy! Hubby and I started eating out a couple times a week now that he is able to get out and about after full recuperation of his first knee replacement surgery, but we still make meals at home a lot, and I have tried some new recipes as I had wanted to. I am drinking lots of water and rarely have a diet soda. I blogged more often, especially the last week of May, when I wrote every day for my Shooting Stars team. I had a goal to try to get 10,000 steps in each day, but as I wrote in a blog last week, I wasnít really serious about it and was up and down, never consistent with it till the end of the month, when I did 7 days in a row, which gave me a total of 20 out of 31 days. I WILL give myself a little break here, as I was sick for about a week after Mother's Day. As far as putting more variety into my exercising, I did some stretching and went on the stationary bike, as well as did WATP moves in the house on hot days, along with my morning walks. I didn't go swimming or to the gym or do as much ST as I wanted to, so I will make this a priority again this month.
June will be all about consistency for me. I joined a 100 day challenge, so I am going to be sure I get the 10,000+ steps in each day, and also concentrate on being active throughout the day. What I notice is that when I do my 3.5-4 mile walk first thing in the morning, Iím already at 8,000 steps by 8 AM, so I know that it will be a breeze getting the rest. Then I tend to have low points in the afternoon or evening when I donít move much. I want to be more aware of this and get off my butt and move around whenever I see that red bar go across the top of my vivofit tracker.
Food-wise, I want to continue with what I have been doing, since itís working. Many times in the past I get tired of doing something and go back to my old ways. I will work on staying consistent in eating healthy, going light on the processed carbs and getting plenty of fruit and veggies and drinking lots of water. I will keep trying new recipes to change things up again, so I donít get bored with the same type of meals, especially snacks. I hope that by the end of June, I will have lost another 5 pounds.
This month I will continue the goal of writing more than one blog a week, and also keep spending time giving encouragement and support in the form of goodies and personal notes to SparkFriends on my teams. I have plenty of time to do this, as we will not be traveling in our RV this month. Dave is having his second knee replacement surgery on June 17th, so we can enjoy going out with friends for a couple weeks, and then weíll be back to square one with him in the hospital for a few days and then coming home and needing my support to do everything (which Iím happy to do!)
Friday, May 30, 2014
Today is the last day of the Spring 5% challenge, and I am proud of myself for ending on a great note....getting exercise minutes in each day and blogging/giving feedback for maximum points for the LTGL. I have to say that at the end of this week, it was tougher to figure out what to blog about. I do usually blog once a week for another team and had a monthly goal to blog more often than that, but I have to say that writing every day was challenging for me. More than blogging, I enjoyed reading other sparkers blogs and responding to them. I got to know some people better and was happy to provide encouragement and praise! I will definitely continue to read and respond to blogs more often.
The last weigh-in for our challenge is tomorrow, and I'm crossing my fingers that I end well. I went from 202.8 to 188 and then gained a pound back last week. I was on the scale this morning and I was still 189, so I will be happy with that, losing about 14 pounds and making my 5% goal +! I will check back in again tomorrow to share my official number.
I am on a little plateau right now, so I will be figuring out a way to break it! really look forward to losing more weight for the Summer 5% Challenge!
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