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What to Do?

Friday, March 18, 2011

I'm home alone.

Not completely alone. Sammy's here with me. But my husband and my exchange son are gone. It's a little lonely and a little peaceful.

But I don't know what to do with myself. Here are my ideas:

1. Watch a ton of TV.
2. Vacuum my rug.
3. Go to the diner by myself with the paper.
4. Change the sheets.
5. Sweep and mop the bedroom floor.
6. Work on my Rosetta Stone.
7. Clean the water stains off my kitchen table.
8. Go to the gym (done that once already).

It all sounds so BORING. I wish that I had friends that could come over and play games and hang out with me. But I don't. Part of me is really cool with all this, and part of me is lonely and sad about it.

Anyway. I wanted to ask y'all what I should do with this time by myself. What should I do with this time by myself?

  Member Comments About This Blog Post:

KARENE10 3/20/2011 9:53AM

    Wow~ I am really late reading this blog,wondering what you did wind up doing? I would do a little bit of everything. Friday nights I'm usually alone. Sometimes I'll go out to dinner with friends but if no one is around I'll pop in an exercise tape(dancing type or yoga) then make myself a nice "diet"dinner(you know the kind husband would not like), and then give myself a mani/pedi and watch TV while it's drying. If I had an entire weekend then I'd set some time aside to clean and go out on a really long walk. If I had money I'd be shopping up a storm:)
Have fun!!!

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RUTHXG 3/19/2011 10:47AM

    Oh, since it's the weekend-plus, I think you should do a combination of things! A bit of extra exercise, maybe some new kind that you hadn't tried before. Maybe two cleaning tasks. A Rosetta Stone session on Saturday, another Sunday afternoon. And reward yourself in between with some rich, restorative activities like listening to beautiful music, doing whatever you do to nurture yourself spiritually, working on your writing, taking a long walk in a nature preserve . . .

You definitely need to plan for the rewarding activities--don't PUNISH yourself for being alone! Rather, see it as an opportunity to manage your own time & nurture yourself without having to attend to others' needs/demands.

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BEATLETOT 3/19/2011 10:06AM

    Oh, I suppose I should clarify. I'm home alone till Monday night. And I can't decide if I should be productive spiritually, intellectually, with housecleaning, externally, in another way or all of the above, and if all of the above, in what ratios.

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CONTESSA63 3/19/2011 7:42AM

  soooooo. what did you end up doing???

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HOPESINGH 3/19/2011 6:10AM

    Ummm... read a book? daydream? dance to some favorite music? listen to your favorite music extremely loudly because nobody can tell you they hate it (well, that might be just me, I love Indian music and unfortunately nobody around me thinks it's even bearable).
In other words, I'd love to be alone in your place for a while. Wanna change places? emoticon

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RUTHXG 3/18/2011 10:29PM

    Ooops, I think I'm too late! (Though I'm not sure where you live.) I had several fun possibilities for tonight, but I came home instead because I desperately need to finish preparing for the advanced editing class I'm teaching for the first time NEXT WEEK (Thursday-Saturday) . . . but I'm just too tired to think creatively.

So for my part, I'm going to put away clean laundry & maybe wash the dishes that I don't put in the dishwasher . . . after I play a word game for a while. Do you play word games? I love them.

I hope it's comforting to know that you aren't the only one home alone & not doing anything especially exciting! Not every Friday night has to be social & lots of fun. Tell us what you ended up doing, OK?

emoticon to you, Brenda!

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AMYLONGHORN 3/18/2011 10:12PM

    Hmmmm....if it were me, I'd get a glass of Riesling and get in a bubble bath and read my Cosmo...but that's just me! ;)

Out of all the things you listed, I would end up watching TV! Actually, that IS what I am doing tonight...have quite a bit of catching up on Days of our Lives...FOUR episodes behind! Two down, two to go...but now the Rangers are on with a spring training game, so we're watching that for now, BUT I am super tired, so I will probably be even LAMER and go to bed soon!

Have a good night, no matter what you do!


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CARLYG8 3/18/2011 9:33PM

    Hmmmm...for me, I am BIG into spring cleaning right now. I think that if I had an extra minute tonight, I would go through the closet, and get rid of some old clothes, so that I could make room for some new ones. I spent the whole day outside, raking and getting flower beds ready...and I am tired of digging in the dirt...never thought I would ever say that!..but my back and my hip are killing me right now. I signed on to post my exercise for the day, and now I have to work on putting together a bible study for a new womens group at church. I have all the notes I have put together, now I just have to compile them into a "lesson". You could come help me type up all these notes....sounds like loads of fun, right?? Ohhh, and I am wanting to go through some cookbooks, or sparkrecipes, or something, and find some new recipes for spring. I am tired of eating the same old stuff over and over and over. I hope you find something interesting to get "into" tonight...

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On a Bender

Wednesday, March 16, 2011

Okay, so since I wrote my last blog, I've been eating like a maniac. I've so completely overeaten this week, I can't even believe it. How do I stop this? I don't even know. I go to bed at night saying, tomorrow will be better, and I wake up saying, today will be better, but then I EAT.

So, any suggestions you have would be most appreciated. Just by writing this, I feel more like I can get past this. I'm just completely creeped out, because yes, obviously, I've eaten more than my fair share of calories over the last few years, but I wasn't really thinking about it, you know? And now, I am, but I can't seem to stop it. It's disconcerting.

Anyway, I'm committing tonight to a healthy meal. I have cooked kale in my fridge. I hope it's still good! Tomorrow, I'm off work, so I can go shopping for the foods that have kept me in my calorie range in the past, like apples. I'm going to buy some more pop, because part of my problem has been stopping in the morning to get a soda at 7-Eleven, and then I wind up walking out with a bag of chips (justified by its small size), taquitos (which I'm pretty sure are made with crack, because I'm addicted), peanut M&Ms (which I'd been craving) or a sausage biscuit. Not all at once, but some combination of the above. Ugh.

Got to get off this train. I hope that tonight, I will.

  Member Comments About This Blog Post:

GO-LOEW 3/16/2011 10:57PM

    Sorry you feel so out of control. It is the worst feeling. The only way I have ever managed to successfully control my eating, craving, binging is to eat only whole foods, the fresher the better. I can't eat any processed foods or I find myself losing my ability to say no. I think processed foods don't give us the nutrients we need and thus we are craving foods to try to fill the nutritional requirements. You can type whole food diet in Google search and gets lots of ideas on what to do. It is hard, especially for those of us who find ourselves addicted to sugary, fatty, salty goodies, but it sure has been worth it to me to be able to lose some weight and get much more healthy.

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RUTHXG 3/16/2011 6:36PM

    OK, so this bender is something you NEEDED, to be able to include it in your future account of "how I got back to the thin version of my cuteness & how you can too"--& now it's over, right? Because you've been offered SO many great ideas here! I totally agree about tricking yourself into being good--planning meals ahead, even tracking ahead; giving yourself just $1 & hiding the purse; drinking tons of water, especially when you're craving. Strategies that you can also include in your future account, whichever ones work especially well for you.

You're such a good writer! It's always fun to read your blogs.


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KJNLDE 3/16/2011 2:11PM

    Oh we've all been there! But instead of feeling bad about it, you need to get over it! I find that when I change habits in the middle of the day instead of "starting tomorrow", that seems to help. It's so easy to fall off the wagon... so hard to get on... but know that you're not alone!! Sometimes it helps to plan out all your meals AND snacks for one day ahead, so you know that what you've planned on is all you can eat. That helps... to not have choices! Good luck!!

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JENBELLE 3/16/2011 1:18PM

    Totally! I have been there with you. I keep sabotaging myself and it's ridiculous! I love all the ideas that people have mentioned on here and I find that once I'm in the zone of healthy eating what works is planning ahead. Making sure I have grapes in the car and a waterbottle instead of stopping for something and getting myself in trouble! Let us know how it goes the rest of the week!

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EYES_ON_THEPRAZ 3/16/2011 12:45PM

    Ahh... it happens. I agree that you need to stay away from 7-11!! I stop there sometimes for a coffee (my once or twice weekly treat) but what I do is hide my purse under the seat in my car, lock it in there, and just go in with the $1 I need for my coffee refill. They're always offering me 2 for 1 donuts and muffins but I'm like No thanks! And it's good because I only have that $1 so I don't/can't allow myself to get anything else!
I made kale chips last week for the first time and now I'm addicted. A little olive oil and salt and I swear these are pretty close to potato chips when you close your eyes. I hope your kale is still good!

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AMYLONGHORN 3/16/2011 9:09AM

    Thinking about eating SUCKS, doesn't it?! LOL I know what you mean about cravings...yesterday on my drive home, I craved Taco Bell (want to try their new Pacific Shrimp Tacos), Which Wich (saw a commercial for it the other day) and this Chinese food restaurant called QQ My Buffet (never been before, but we got a menu on our door and DAMN it sounds good). But instead of all that, I had some of Chris's mom's meatloaf, green beans and potatoes for dinner. Being "good" is no fun...til you get on the scale!! Good idea to buy your coke and take it to work to avoid 7-11...I have to take my breakfast AND lunch to work to stay out of the cafeteria. So far so good...good luck with that!!

P.S. I keep wanting to call you, so hopefully we can catch up when you're off work the next couple days! HUGS!!

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ZALES127 3/16/2011 9:01AM

    I hear ya! My thing..which I think I have made mention of in every single one of my blog posts and replies to other blogs..has been drinking water. I hate water. I do..but its making such a huge difference in everything. I used to drink at least 8 glasses of diet Mt. Dew a day. Now, Im lucky to finish 1.Water has been my saving grace. I fell off the wagon this weekend when I had family over and didnt drink nearly enough water and Monday, I wanted to go on a bender. Everything seemed to look good and I had a major sweet tooth. Now I know.

I agree do anything you can to stay away from 7-11. Its soo easy to just grab something "small". Which can be so detromental. Just get yourself back on the horse and dont beat yourself up too much. Everyone gets off track every now and then. Its expected.

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What Else Might I Regret Not Starting Today?

Sunday, March 13, 2011

My bestie at work gave me a Rosetta Stone for my birthday. Yesterday, I tried to install it, and it wouldn't install! I spent 3.5 hours yesterday trying to figure this out, 1 and a half of which were spent with a very nice man named Vivek who tried to help me and couldn't. He asked me to contact "Level 2 support" today. I did, and after another hour and a half, they were able to get my program installed.

Here's the thing. My birthday was in October. It took me 5 months to do this.

If I had started the day after I got the program, I'd be well on my way to speaking Arabic. If I had started the day after I got the program, my bestie could have gotten me Level 2 for my anniversary or Valentine's Day or something. If I had started the day after I got the program, I wouldn't be regretting that I didn't.

And that got me thinking. What else might I regret not starting? I was going to skip the gym today, and go tomorrow, but maybe I'd wish I'd gone today. So I did.

And what else? Maybe I'll regret not cooking those collards. Maybe I'll regret not starting that book I borrowed from the library. Or the crossword puzzles I've been saving for when I "had time." Or finishing the newspaper, before it's not news anymore. Or getting into a serious, consistent strength training program. What do I want to get done? Well, I should start doing it!

I don't mean that I carry some sort of life-sucking amount of regret around; maybe just a little. I think we all do. One of the more obnoxious things in life are people who say, "I don't have any regrets." Sure, you do. You don't dwell on it, and you shouldn't! But everyone's hurt someone, made a big mistake, did the wrong thing. I believe in the butterfly effect, that if you changed the smallest thing, that the effects on life and world have the potential to be huge, but a person who says that can't possibly be thinking that when they look into the eyes of someone they hurt, or when they feel humiliated, or when they realize the mistake.

But I digress.

My point was that regret can be a useful tool if you let it. Or potential regret, anyway. It got me thinking about the potential that a list of those things could have. A daily list, of things I *might* regret not starting/finishing/doing on that day. Just a different way to state "Don't put off for tomorrow..."

  Member Comments About This Blog Post:

RUTHXG 3/16/2011 6:29PM

    Forestalling future regret---I love it! I'm going to hold onto that idea as a self-reminder.


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EYES_ON_THEPRAZ 3/14/2011 2:38PM

    great blog! Thanks for the reminder.
and ps... rosetta stone sounds amazing! I keep wanting to do that but I know it's so expensive

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HOPESINGH 3/14/2011 11:41AM

    This is so me! I always yell at myself for not having done this or that... But we can't really realize all these infinite projects, only some of them. And we do need time to rest and just be, not only do.
I started using some parts of the GTD method, and it seems to get me moving at least in some ways. Good luck!
by the way, was the support staff from India? That's what the name Vivek means to me.

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BEATLETOT 3/14/2011 8:27AM

    KT, I love that quote! I'm going to put it somewhere...maybe as a bookmark for the planner I don't use that I intend to have as my Things I Might Regret Not Doing Today book. Thank you!

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KIM--POSSIBLE 3/13/2011 9:35PM

    Speaks to one of my favorite quotes: A year from now, you will wish you had started today. - Karen Lamb

I lost 30 pounds in 3 months daily reminding myself of this very thing. Thank you for sharing! Hope you are getting going with learning Arabic now!

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KJNLDE 3/13/2011 9:26PM

    Good point! Instead of thinking behind to the past "what if's", we should be thinking ahead to the future "what if's". I'm going to make that my motto this week... instead of looking back on all the junk I ate today, I'm going to look ahead to the "what if I eat only good foods this week"! Thanks for the reminder!!

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READYRACHEL 3/13/2011 7:07PM

    Good point. Thank you for sharing.

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Always One to Follow a Crowd: Me. A-Z

Friday, March 04, 2011

Age~ 28
Bed size~ Queen
Chore you hate the most~ Cleaning the shower
Dogs~ Little Sammy!
Essential start your day item~ Alarm clock
Favorite color~Purple
Gold or silver~ Why choose when you don't have to?
Height~ 4'10.5"
Instruments you play~ None. I had a guitar, but I was never very good.
Job title~ Academic Advisor
Kids~ Not now, maybe later. Please don't ask again.
Live~ DC Metro Area
Mom's first name~ Marsha
Nicknames~ Brenditita (from my colleague who doesn't quite *get* Spanish) , Sillyhead (from my husband)
Overnight hospital stays~ Just when I was born
Pet peeve~Misuse of the word "literally," as in "I literally DIED!" Um, no, you didn't. Also, improper noun forms, i.e. audaciousness (as opposed to audacity), maliciousness (as opposed to malice). Also, people who don't use their signals to change lanes and people who tailgate.
Quote from a movie~ "Well Ndugu, I'll close now. You probably can't wait to run and cash this check and get yourself something to eat."--About Schmidt
Right or Left-handed~ Right
Siblings~4, two brothers, two sisters
Time you wake up~ 6:30-ish
Underwear~ is in my drawer.
Vegetable you dislike~ beets
What makes you late~ Missing keys
X-rays you've had done~ at the dentist, and my foot once
Yummy food you make~ Cheesy stuffed eggplant
Zoo animal favorite~ Baby pygmy hippos, especially if they're named Aldo, like the one in Paris

  Member Comments About This Blog Post:

KAREN_NY 3/14/2011 12:17PM

    heeheee... I have several grammar pet peeves too. ;)
Love your list,

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HOPESINGH 3/7/2011 1:26PM

    people who don't use signals to change lanes or tailgate! How annoying - I really hate it when it happens, and it does all the time (I was hoping it's a feature of the extremely impolite Israeli driver, but it seems to be a worldwide problem emoticon)

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KJNLDE 3/5/2011 12:29PM

    I love your answer to kids!! I can't stand hearing, "So, when are you going to have #2?"

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CONTESSA63 3/5/2011 8:16AM

  wonderful blog! i just may copy you. emoticon

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BEATLETOT 3/5/2011 8:13AM

    Cheesy stuffed eggplant is a SparkRecipe. If you do a search on cheesy stuffed eggplant at, you'll find it. But warning. It is AMAZING.

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AMYLONGHORN 3/5/2011 7:46AM

    I don't think I've ever even eaten beets before. No desire, really...I'm not a big veggie person as it is. I put down that I don't like mushrooms, but I also don't like cooked carrots...GROSS! They are too mushy...carrots are supposed to be CRUNCHY! LOL! And I'm going to need that cheesy stuffed eggplant recipe STAT.

And when are you having kids again?! JUST KIDDING!!!

*hugs* sister!!

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EYES_ON_THEPRAZ 3/4/2011 9:31PM

    LOL David Cross has an excellent bit about people misusing literally...

"I literally $h** my pants!"
"what did you do with your pants?"
atch?v=6ly1UTgiBXM ... hopefully you aren't offended by some language!

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RUTHXG 3/4/2011 9:01PM

    Ooh, beets are my nonfavorites too! But they are FABULOUS in chocolate cake. They make it so moist that it needs no frosting. Yum!

Cheesy stuffed eggplant sounds fantastic. emoticon

emoticon to you, Brenditititica!

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One bottle of pop...

Friday, February 25, 2011

Two nights ago, when I was getting ready to go to bed, I suddenly realized that I had only had one soda all day. Normally, I drink anywhere from 3-6. So I tried the same thing yesterday. And I'm working on today, so we'll see, though my husband bought my very favorite Diet Dr. Pepper. I may have two today. emoticon But it feels good to have done that, and actually, pretty good that it was by accident.

I've been wanting to give up soda for awhile, but when I try to, I get wicked headaches. Really, really bad headaches. And it's not the caffeine, actually. One time, I had a really bad headache, and nothing worked: not sleep, not potassium, not ibuprofeun, not even regular Coke. Then, I had a Diet Coke, and within 20 minutes, I was good. It's not the caffeine; it's the aspartame.

I haven't given up soda yet because something always gets in the way. I got close once. I got down to 10 ounces a day. I figured I would get to one can a day, then bought a two-liter and measured out until I could get down to zero. But something, and I don't know what, got in the way.

So this being quite by accident, and my not having a headache, means I can maintain this. And after a week (or a month--husband bought me a 36-pack) of one can a day, I can start doing the two-liter thing.

Maybe I won't have the second one. Slippery slopes...

  Member Comments About This Blog Post:

CBEVNOW 3/13/2011 9:37PM

    As a 3rd stage chronic kidney patient i urge every one to stop drinking Pop. It is one of the worse things they are for your kidneys.

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CONTESSA63 3/5/2011 8:20AM

  i was chatting with a colleague just a couple of days ago about this very same thing. she's trying to break a 4 pop a day habit. i never realized that there were withdrawal symptoms. i'm a coffee drinker but have cut back to just my morning coffee. and i'm not sure that i ever want to give it up!

good for you. glad that it's getting easier.

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PJBOKC 2/26/2011 8:37PM

    What an accomplishment to cut back on Diet Dr Pepper or Diet Doc as we call it our house. I, too, love my diet doc -grab it instead of water. thanks for giving me hope I can break - or at least cut down on the "habit".

emoticon emoticon emoticon

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KJNLDE 2/26/2011 8:31PM

    Good job! I've tried cutting back on my coffee and it's just so difficult! I found that it helps to tell myself that I can't have "x" (coffee for me, soda for you) until I have 2 glasses of water. And if I want more coffee, not until 2 more waters. It helps me get in my water, and also has helped me cut back a bit!

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RUTHXG 2/26/2011 12:35PM

    Oh yay! I think part of it is regular exercise--you've got endorphins & other good chemicals going, so your body starts to lose its unhealthy cravings. Yay for not having headaches!


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BOBBIEED 2/26/2011 9:38AM

    I do understand. My drink I have had to cut down on is coffee. I have replaced it with green tea and that seems to work for me.
You are doing great. Keep up the good work.
emoticon emoticon emoticon emoticon emoticon

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MOMMYOMG 2/26/2011 9:04AM

    I'm in the same boat with you. My drink is Diet Dr. Pepper and I normally can lose count of how many I have in a day. But since starting here at Spark People, I am trying to drink my 8 glasses of water (which I haven't yet can only manage about 4 a day) so I have cut back to about one a day. Yay! I am worried about the aspartame too. Any thoughts on Splenda? I, like Carlg8, HATE water. I have been adding lemon juice and a little splenda to my water (that's the only way I will drink it for now) but I am really questioning if that is good or bad?

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CARLYG8 2/26/2011 8:23AM

    I think if I were to donate blood, it would be 95 percent diet coke...laughs. That is my go to beverage all day now. I gave up juices because of the sugar, and extra calories, and started drinking diet coke because it was calorie free and had taste (I hate water). I now have concerns over the artificial sweeteners and some of the medical reports/findings. I know that I have to give it up, and I know that it is going to be a huge challenge for me. HMMM... a new goal emerges...(smiles)

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KIM--POSSIBLE 2/25/2011 9:50PM

    That is awesome! How funny that it was an accidental realization that has gotten you this far!

I gave up sodas a few years ago, but I was never really that stuck on having them in the first place so it wasn't a huge feat for me! LOL I accidentally drank from my daughter's sprite once 2 years or so ago, and it was the most syrupy sweet taste ever, and I couldn't stand it! I have found that, as I reduce my intake of certain things (white bread, refined sugar) my tolerance for them decreases.

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MAGGIENCALI 2/25/2011 9:41PM

    That's great! Took me about a year to kick the soda habit (Diet Coke) completely. But I understand not wanting to give it up entirely. I was getting double aspartame with the Diet Coke and Yoplait non-fat yogurt. But kicking the soda thing is possible. They have the little 5 oz. cans out now too.

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EYES_ON_THEPRAZ 2/25/2011 7:01PM

    So interesting about the diet coke and headaches... My boyfriend gets the same way and I always assumed it was the caffeine.
I won't give up soda completely... when I want it I will have one. But I am happy to say that over time my desire for soda has gone wayyy down and I now drink maybe 2 a week, at most.
Shoot for one a day -- good plan for now and it will still be something for you to look forward to throughout the day. emoticon

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