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Another Dalai Lama quote

Friday, January 27, 2012

I follow the Dalai Lama on Google+ and sometimes I just really really appreciate the comments that are made. This one is one I want to remember:

== The very purpose of spirituality is self-discipline. Rather than criticizing others, we should evaluate and criticize ourselves. Ask yourself, what am I doing about my anger, my attachment, my pride, my jealousy? These are the things we should check in our day to day lives. ==

I had a situation the last couple of nights that got me angry to the point of ranting to my best friend and not wanting to have anything to do with the company involved. Instead of focusing on criticizing them, this reminded me that I should evaluate what I had done (or not done) and look critically at my anger with an eye to improving for the future.

(To me criticize is not a bad word. It is a necessary part of improving to be able to look critically and see what needs changing. It is no less loving of myself to know I am not perfect and need self-correction.)

  Member Comments About This Blog Post:

SAMI199 1/27/2012 8:26PM

    I love him..have you watched his talks on youtube? They are awesome.


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_JODI404 1/27/2012 7:55PM

    I really like that quote.

I've read many places that when we have a problem with other people, the thing that irritates us about them is actually something that bothers us about ourselves. They are just a mirror showing us the issue. I'm not always able to agree with that, but it is interesting to analyze.

Hope you have a great weekend... and continue to heal nicely with your foot!

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LGAR519 1/27/2012 7:09PM

    I am very seldom critical of others. But I am critical of myself. And other people tend to be critical of me. Some of it is deserving and some is not. I have never read the Dalai Lama.

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RAPUNZEL53 1/27/2012 6:20PM

  Way to go! I like Dalai Lama and his teachings a lot! Good Luck to you on your journey!

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Looking up unknown ingredients

Friday, January 27, 2012

I've heard people say before that they avoid any food that has things in the ingredients that they don't know or can't pronounce. The need to manually enter nutrition facts has had me looking more often. Now, instead of rejecting outright any food that has an unknown ingredient, my policy is to look it up.

Someone had mentioned that chocolate milk after a workout (about 15 minutes later) is a good option. I love my milk and I do love chocolate milk, so I scheduled it in yesterday to make sure it fit my nutrition tracking well.

Post-gym, I headed to the nearby grocery. They were completely out of small (16 oz) bottles of chocolate milk. I didn't want to buy half a gallon. They did have, however, a load of chocolate and mocha (pass!) and "very berry strawberry" (hmmm). I grabbed the latter.

While heading from the grocer to the transit stop, I was sipping and looking at the ingredients. All but one were "normal". I normally avoid artificial flavors just on principal, but wasn't going to toss it over that or Red #40.

Then I saw "Carrageenan".

What on earth? It was way near the end, so not much relatively. I'd never heard of a phony sugar with a name like that, but maybe I missed something. So I had to go look it up.

It was actually kind of interesting. It's extracted from seaweed and useful in how it bonds / gels other ingredients. It is used to thicken the strawberry milk a little and give it the expected viscosity (I chuckled - I'm more used to that word as used with motor oil than food).

It has its goods and bads. One good that had me surprised is there is a nasal spray containing it that has been shown in clinical trials to actually be effective against cold viruses (the virus, not just the cold symptoms like every other treatment out there). One bad is that it could have a role in IBS, so those with touchy digestive systems probably have to avoid/limit food-based consumption.

Next time I see Carrageenan on a label, I'll know what it is. I'm glad it wasn't an artificial sweetener. Those tend, in more than minute amounts, to give me headaches.

  Member Comments About This Blog Post:

IMATALOSS 1/30/2012 12:46PM

  I had to laugh Friday night at dinner when I read carrageenan on the ingredient list for some mini chicken cilantro wontons my hubby was making for a dinner side dish. Hubby looked at me like I was crazy and asked what I was laughing about. I told him I had read a blog that day about Carrageenan and knew exactly what it was. I gave him his lesson on seaweed. So, thanks! Hubby and I learned something new last week! LOL emoticon

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AHTRAP 1/29/2012 3:52AM

    You know why I know what carageenan is, and have since I was 8 years old? One of my fave book series as a kid was the Black Stallion series, and in the first book, the title horse and his boy, Alex, get stranded on a desert island, and are saved from starvation when Alex discovers carageenan and remembers that it's edible (apparently from science class).

Thanks for the wild, nearly 30 year flashback! :)

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ELLENSANGEL 1/28/2012 9:57AM

    Wow, that's interesting. Knowledge is power.

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-MOJOJOJO- 1/27/2012 5:10PM

    weird that you would think strawberry milk would need red coloring added to it if strawberries were in it and also, why does strawberry milk need to be "thickened" with that "seaweed"?? um.. ..dont you think you would want a milk shake if wanted "thicker" milk? so weird..

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-SONIA- 1/27/2012 3:29PM

    Very interesting. If it's extracted from seaweed, does that make it sort of natural? Kinda sorta? emoticon

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TMCLEOD4 1/27/2012 2:18PM

    I heard it was a type of wax. It's in a lot of things to make them creamier (like lowfat ice cream) or richer tasting. I never looked it up, tho. Very interesting, thanks for sharing.

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LGAR519 1/27/2012 2:07PM

    Thanks for the info. I had never heard of it before. I have to be careful too because artificial sweeteners make sores in my mouth.

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WHQPHQ 1/27/2012 1:22PM

    I bought some cereal bars the other day as they looked full of fruit and seeds but now I've studied the ingredients there are loads of things in there (some of which I'm not sure what they are!). I think I'll stick to my homemade date, raisin and almond bars 100% natural yummy things!

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NIKINA_G 1/27/2012 1:20PM

    interesting !!! thanks for the info :)

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CATHILE 1/27/2012 1:18PM

    I despise strawberry milk because it affected my I know why!


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THETURTLEBEAR 1/27/2012 1:04PM

    I know what you mean!

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GETMETO50 1/27/2012 1:00PM

    carageenan is in a lot of is a filler...I worked in a deli and a lot of cheap deli meat has it in it to make it seem you are getting more "meat" than you think you are...we had to take a course on boar's head deli meat and they are one of the few that don't use it but actually use real meat in their deli was very interesting and eye opening to say the least.

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Humour me

Thursday, January 26, 2012

First thing I should say - while I was, in the moment, most irked with the couple mouthing off, by the time I posted that blog I'd long since laughed about it. (They were rude / crass anyway, making a big deal of his nationality as though it had any connection to his brazen ogling.)

He's not the first and I'm sure he won't be the last who are on the creepy end of the spectrum. However, I'm not small or meek. They can creep, but if they tried anything they would be considered a T.K.O. shortly. So I really don't think long on them other than having fun with the stories of their oddness.

Which brings me to humour.

My best friend loves comedy. Whether it's a comedian on a stage or a sit-com, it's all gravy. The topic doesn't matter, bland or offensive, tame or profane, politics, religion, sexuality, race and culture - he enjoys the humor.

Me? Man ... am I the most difficult to amuse audience in many cases.

Most potty humor has me going "really? not funny". Except for one time I had something pop into my head and texted my daughter and friend:

== If an increment is a small step or interval ... what is an excrement? ==

The word play is what amused me far more than the potty part of the humour.

Most humour that involves mocking or making fun of others is somewhat "eh?" to me. It has to be very light and indirect and the comedian has to be equal opportunity about their targets. Yet I seriously laughed when I saw an image on Google+ that read:

== A husband is someone who, after taking the trash out, gives the impression he just cleaned the whole house. ==

I don't think I ever have or ever will laugh at videos or gifs of people getting injured or humiliated in some way. The whole "America's Funniest Home Videos" used to tick me off badly. Yet I can be rather amused by a video of a squirrel than has eaten fruit that fermented and is drunkly attempting to climb a tree.

Or the foxes on a trampoline:

What do I find funny? I rather like plays on word meanings, but preferably subtle rather than in your face. I enjoy a rather dry wit, when the humor doesn't feel like the entire focus of what is being said and is a surprise treat.

So, humour me when I fail to make it clear that I'm amused. ^_~

  Member Comments About This Blog Post:

SLIMKATE4 1/27/2012 6:34PM

    Oh I like you already!!

I am doing an English Language and Communication degree and words are my bag baby!!

BTW - Love the pics showing your weight loss, the inches gone really show emoticon

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PEPPYPATTI 1/26/2012 8:38PM

    I love the one about the husband taking the trash out! That suits my Hubby to a T!

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WHQPHQ 1/26/2012 5:27PM


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THETURTLEBEAR 1/26/2012 2:23PM


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NIKINA_G 1/26/2012 1:15PM

    I find people who laugh about everything...even the dumbest joke rather annoying ;)

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CRYSTLE4HIMTX10 1/26/2012 11:23AM

    I think we must have a similar sense of humor. My hubby says I have no sense of humor because I don't find the crash in your face jokes funny and don't tend to laugh out loud when I am amused. Every now and then a joke will get me rolling and my son will say, "Hey dad, look, she's laughing." emoticon

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LGAR519 1/26/2012 9:32AM

    I may be the only person who doesn't watch TV sit-coms. The only one I ever watched in 60 some years was Married with Children!! I am not easily amused.

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DANCINLOVE 1/26/2012 7:23AM

    You are so right that comedy is personal. A close friend told me that "Hot Tub Time Machine" was one of the funniest movies she'd ever seen. I couldn't even get through it. She avoids Richard Curtis like the plague (Four Weddings and a Funeral, The Tall Guy, Love Actually) and I laugh so hard I fall off the sofa. And I agree with you that getting hurt is usually not funny.

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WIMSONFLOWER 1/26/2012 6:21AM

    You're right . . . some people have twisted humor. Nevertheless, it's hilarious what can sometimes every so oddly tickle one's funny bone. I love word humor, too.

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BLUE42DOWN 1/26/2012 2:45AM

    Hehe, that "u" is because my best friend is in Canada. He's obsessive about humour, colour, and cheque. So I get used to filling it in there. But then my American education pipes up and I swap back to humor, color, and check.

Superfluous with its spelling reminds me, though. I have no idea whether a Canadian spells it "humourous" ... so I always fall back on "humorous".

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AHTRAP 1/26/2012 1:21AM

    Love the disappearing superfluous "u" makes me confused and amused all at the same time :)

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MELLISOND 1/26/2012 12:35AM

    I am with you here. I do not enjoy "humor" that involves hurting other beings.

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Oy, which was worse?

Wednesday, January 25, 2012

So, last night after leaving the gym and hopping on the Light Rail Train, this short older man starts asking me where I'm getting off, where I'm heading, and giving me looks. I brush him off as much as possible, but unfortunately for me, he's getting off at the same stop and onto the same bus from there that I am.

Fine, whatever. I sit down, he sits in the seat in front of me, but he doesn't turn and try to talk to me, so I just leave it be.

Then it's my stop and I stand up at the door as the bus pulls up. This means I have my back to Mr. Little and Kinda Creepy. Easy enough to pay no attention to him ... right?

Nope. To my right is a couple who suddenly, in a stage whisper without the whisper part, start in with:

"OMG, look at the (nationality). He's checking out her a$$. What a pervert."
"Can you believe him? Such a total perv."


Seriously? I had no trouble just ignoring the guy. Did we really have to just make sure the ENTIRE bus knows he is looking? Now their eyes will go one of two places. Him. Or me.


Okay, so it's not really a question. I know for a fact I consider the couple far worse than the old guy. He was a predictable creeper, but harmless. They turned it into a public event with no consideration for how that attention would affect me.


  Member Comments About This Blog Post:

SAMI199 1/25/2012 11:36PM



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TLBLACKJACK 1/25/2012 9:34PM

    Hopefully you don't see any of them again! Put it on the positive side you were worth looking at!!

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SANDYB223 1/25/2012 7:31PM

    Ugh, sounds frustrating for sure.

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TK421BETH 1/25/2012 6:43PM

    Oh...well...??? It's creepy, for sure!!! emoticon

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HDHAWK 1/25/2012 6:12PM


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CRYSTLE4HIMTX10 1/25/2012 5:53PM

    So sorry emoticon

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THETURTLEBEAR 1/25/2012 5:26PM


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MOM-OF-SIX 1/25/2012 4:59PM

    Wow! Try not to let this thing get to you too much. Hopefully, you won't run into these people again.

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TMCLEOD4 1/25/2012 2:49PM

    Sorry, that really sucks! You could look at it this way, at least your ass is worth checking out!!

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MPLANE37 1/25/2012 2:19PM

    Most people are short of empathy.

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PARASELENIC 1/25/2012 1:29PM

    The bus seems to be one of those places where people lose all sense of decency or ettiquette. My bus is full of gum-snappers, loud music from cell phones, totally ridiculous LOUD cell phone conversations, yelling across the bus, throwing trash out the window, guys mashing you-- the whole bit. It's a little box of madness.

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ELUNAMAKATA 1/25/2012 12:57PM



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GETMETO50 1/25/2012 12:56PM

    wow, talk about verbal diarrhea!

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LOSE4LIFE47 1/25/2012 12:53PM

    Oh my!! How absurd!!

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Adjustments, ramping up, and feeling drained

Tuesday, January 24, 2012


So after replying to a thread on one of my Teams on how to make sure the nutrition tracker has the calorie range set based on accurate numbers, I took a moment to review mine and adjust my target date.

First, I decided to adjust the goal to 155 instead of 160. The reason for that is in my Sophomore or Junior year, in Driver's Ed class, I remember quite distinctly being 150 and being just about right, if not muscle fit. A few years later, living on my own and eating a good bit of fast food and drinking lots of soda, I was holding at 165 and was notably over-curved, soft at points.

Yes, that was 20 years ago, but that range (up to 162) fits right into the top end of the "ideal weight" for my height. Much as it has not been all along, however, that goal weight is not really what I'm working for - it's a ticker that shows how I'm doing in the healthier eating and fitter acting department.

I then looked at what the date would be to reach that with a 1.5 pound per week loss based on my average so far over four months being 1.64 per week. That came out as something in mid-November, so I put the end of the year as my goal to allow for it slowing down toward the end.

This adjusted my recommended calorie range from 1650-2050 down to 1470-1820. It might go back up if eating in the lower range causes me to lose weight faster than planned, but we shall see.

Ramping Up

I honestly did not expect to be doing this, but I keep adding a little here and there at the gym. I so remember my past gym memberships positively, and so I've settled back in duck to water style. Other than learning things like the elliptical and relearning/learning different models of weight machine and working out a routine, I get there and settle right in.

I only started doing the recumbent bike to replace walking while my foot recovers (thus far seems to be doing quite well - but I'm taking no chances). Now I've done the elliptical for the second time and find it surprisingly easy.

My knees are definitely less touchy. I can do the squatting stretch for the inner thighs and a couple of others without having to pay super close attention to them. I'll have to try normal squats and see what they think but that pleases me.

My ST has gone from a few muscle areas to pretty much making sure I cover all the major muscle group. It has also gone from 2 sets of 15 exercises with 1.5-2.5 pounds extra weight at most to 3 sets of 12 with varying amounts depending on the machine (I am weak still, so any from 15 to 60 pounds generally). I follow that with either 20-30 minutes on the bike or 10-15 minutes on the elliptical. Then I do crunches and obliques on a mat with my legs on a balance ball. Then I stretch out fully. O_O Just about 2.5 hours at the gym. Whoa.

The other four days of the week, I aim for 45 minutes on the bike in fat burn mode. I may swap that to 30 on the elliptical given that cardio isn't as hard on my legs.

(Fat burn = my lower heart rate range, 116 for my age. Cardio = my higher heart range, 142 for my age.)

I had forgotten just how much fun I find the gym.

In fact, I think my ONLY complaint ... is that I get tired of looking at nothing. CNN makes my head hurt, ESPN seems to only show basketball which I'm sick of, music videos are too pop for my taste, and the last shows a series of tips (... one has a typo in it) and short blips about classes, and I've read them all at this point. Even if I got a music player, it wouldn't give me a place to focus my eyes.

(TMI - Skip advisory to not read the rest if you don't want.)

Feeling drained

As I'd mentioned in my prior blog, I was so mentally tired from this past weekend. Thankfully, most of my early day at work was easy software testing so I felt better. But physically I felt completely drained. I didn't sleep particularly well, but it wasn't just that. This was more than tired.

Yeah, TOM decided to show up. A week early. Which, given that I'm most of the time in the 30-31 day range isn't really too badly off, just early. (I'm used to the occasional odd one. Between DDa and a coworker, I seem to fluctuate to share cycles once in a while.)

My usual pattern is some spotting a few days before - which was only a couple days before this time. Then I have one day that is quite heavy and where I just feel like I'm drained of all energy. (And literally, I ~AM~ being drained, I say.) I definitely feel the cramps (mild with my high pain tolerance) and my bones and lower back ache. That was what hit me this morning.

Either by evening or the next day, most of that goes away besides some faint achiness and the rest is normal lasting 2-3 days.

Lucky for me, I was feeling better by mid-afternoon. I wasn't sure what I'd have done about the gym - probably reschedule my ST for tomorrow. It was most awkward though. I headed for the ladies' locker room at least four times just to make sure I didn't have any embarassing leaks. -___- I don't remember that particular problem in the past.

Yes, I do realize I am amazingly lucky. The worst "PMS" that I get is tending to talk naughty more in the few days before I realize it's in the works. The one day of feeling utterly drained is survivable (with napping) and other than that it is merely a nuisance part of being female.

  Member Comments About This Blog Post:

FITINNM 1/25/2012 2:46PM

    I know what you mean about the tv's at the gym. My biggest complaint is, Why do they have to show the Food Network! I mean seriously! That's what got me into the condition I'm in! Ha!Ha! Being a woman is tough! I go thru the same thing. Crave everything in sight and my hunger is outta control the week before, not to mention the bloatedness. Ugh! You are doing great on the exercise!

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50ISNEW30 1/24/2012 7:48PM

    You're always on top of things, that is so great. emoticon
Trying the different machines reminded me of when a trainer introduced me to the stair stepper about 15 years ago. I got on it and looked at her and she said ok, go and I said it's not moving and she said you have to make it move. LOL I chose the treadmill! I'll be looking into the goal setting. I set my calorie goal on my own, probably should use the system.
As far as TMI, menopause is great except for my new beard. Not liking that part at all.

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SABLENESS 1/24/2012 4:45PM

    emoticonYou are doing great with making realistic adjustments to your goals and sticking with your plan!

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MOM-OF-SIX 1/24/2012 4:41PM

    Sounds like you've made some good adjustments. Keep on Sparking!

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THETURTLEBEAR 1/24/2012 2:59PM

    Good luck!

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GETMETO50 1/24/2012 12:48PM

    I readjust mine every month because I never do the same amount of exercise it seems.
I feel for you on the TMI...mine were fine until I had kids...having my son enlarged my uterus and it never quite shrunk after that...having my tubes tied after my daughter suddenly gave me horrid cramping...finally 2 years ago I had to have a hysterectomy ( I don't miss it but I do empathize!

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PARASELENIC 1/24/2012 12:37PM

    You are rocking the exercise! I think it's very important to assess your goals at least on a monthly basis-- if you're exercising 5000 cals per week but your nutrition tracker bases your burn on 2000, you're doing a disservice to your body and your goals.

RE: the nothing to look at: I would recommend a kindle fire or some other "pad"-- even a smart can load up your own vids and watch with headphones. Even a small personal dvd player or something can jazz it up for you... but I agree, the tvs in general in gyms leave something to be desired.

Personally, I like to listen to audio books if I'm not rocking out to music-- especially when ST, as that involves a lot of moving around and setting up machines. etc.

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NIKINA_G 1/24/2012 12:17PM

    Congrats on finding the joy in working out again and also on resetting your goals. I am gonna do that too today !!! Maybe I see things a little more realistic now or maybe I take it more serious than I did when I first set them.
I am in my early 40th too and YEP my hormones are having a hell of a time ;)

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CRYSTLE4HIMTX10 1/24/2012 9:28AM

    Sometimes it is good to reset our goals. As you get closer to goal if it is too low you can just raise it up again. emoticon

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SCMAMAJONES 1/24/2012 8:33AM

    I totally relate on the TMI section. I'm not sure how old you are, but just be prepared that once you hit early forties (I'm 43), your monthly cycles go insane. At least mine have. Previous patterns don't apply. It's like my hormones took a crazy pill. Everyone talks about night sweats and hot flashes in the fifties, but no one mentions the craziness in your forties. If you're still in your thirties, enjoy. And if you're in your early forties, I feel your pain. Literally.

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GOSSAMERONE 1/24/2012 12:49AM

  Thanks! for sharing.

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