C8TSON   18,234
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C8TSON's Recent Blog Entries

Updates, Some Pictures, & Joy!

Wednesday, August 13, 2014

Good morning! I have not been a very dedicated sparker lately. I have been on here everyday, reading people's blogs and trying to be in touch with my friends. I just haven't taken the time to spark for myself. We have had a ton of stuff going on lately, and I am doing well just to keep up with the normal responsibilities.

First off, the remodel still isn't even close to being done in our bathroom. With work schedules and of course working around a baby's schedule, we really only get time to dedicate to it on the weekends. And, when we have people who decide they want to come visit us on the weekends, well, there goes that time as well. So, we are still using our gym for showers, which is exhausting. By the time I get there, I don't even want to think about using the gym for its real purpose of working out, because I'm so tired from the rest of the day. Plus, I don't usually get over there until 11:00 at night after everything else is done.

On top of the remodel, we still don't have our fence fixed. I had posted a blog about that a few weeks ago, but removed it because it looked like it was going to turn into a legal issue. The guy whose trailer hit it just won't come fix our fence. That is highly maddening and frustrating, but our fault for trusting him. emoticon

I haven't been able to exercise in a very long time. That's the other problem I have had lately. I'm not sure as to what extent I have talked about my shoulders here, but for months, I have been going through rigorous chiropractic work trying to fix 10+ years worth of damage that I never noticed as a problem before. I had about 3 injuries around 10 years ago, but at the time, being young, I thought they would heal just fine. And they gave the appearance that they did, until I had my son. Then the pains of yesteryear started kicking in, and I have been in excruciating pain from these old injuries. I was sent to I guess a "specialist" chiropractor to do some muscle testing, because my progress just got to a standstill. I just found out a couple of days ago that due to the trauma in my left shoulder, I have 11 muscles in that shoulder alone not even functioning. That is why I have been having such pain; basically, some of the smaller muscles have been taking over trying to stabilize me and that is the source of the problem. I have to admit, I was a little skeptical going into the therapy for it, but after just reactivating two muscles, I woke up this morning for the first time in months with minimized pain. It was really nice for a change. emoticon I'm still cut off from exercise at this point except for walking.

So, those are the stressful points I have been dealing with. Makes me seem a little negative to start off with the negatives, but I needed to get some of that off my chest. On a brighter note, the rest of life is wonderful! emoticon We are truly blessed! Clark is about to turn a year old next month. Can you believe it?!

He is growing so fast! But, he brightens every day! Children are such a blessing!

We also have had a very fruitful (or should I say veggie-ful) garden this year. emoticon We have cucumbers, squash, and okra growing more quickly than we can harvest. Also have tomatoes on the way that are a little delayed, as well as peppers. We even have a mystery cantaloupe growing! Probably a seed from our compost? I don't care how it got there! LOL! Such a rewarding treat to grow your own foods!

Life is just really great. Justin and I are finally at a place of eating healthy because we want to, not because we feel obligated to. We have been eating some amazing meals lately! Eating healthy, we have found, doesn't have to be boring or dreadful.

Yummy! Those cucumbers are from my garden!


Doesn't that just look super appealing for summer?

We have been eating so many fresh veggies and fruits this summer! The more I eat them, the more I want them, which is an awesome feeling. Each day, through prayer, some help in counseling, and self-reflection, I am overcoming my bad food habits. What an awesome success!

I'm not even touching the scale right now, which is why I opted not to do the BLC again. I still feel that mentally, and emotionally, I wasn't quite ready to embark on another BLC. The scale is a ton of pressure for me. With my history of eating disorders, I know myself and I know when I need to stay away from the scale. In 49 days, if all goes as planned, I will begin my planned 30 day reboot, and I am hoping for some very positive results. Until then, I'm just relearning the joys of simply... God food. emoticon

  
  Member Comments About This Blog Post:

_LINDA 8/14/2014 1:24AM

    Wow! So glad your shoulder problem was figured out! What a relief to get that finally worked on so you can begin healing..
Maybe you guys need to learn to say no to company so you can get that bathroom done, or better yet, have company that could help, a good old fashioned work bee..
Take care of yourself!
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VEG954 8/13/2014 12:43PM

  You have so much going on in several directions.
Sparkers are here to support one another.
So happy to have read your post.
I thought your blog was reporting rather than complaining.
I would have been a basket case with not having a shower!

You are a determined and strong Sparker.
Please stay in touch.

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DSHONEYC 8/13/2014 11:13AM

    emoticon

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Why, Oh Why, Do I Continue to Punish Myself?

Tuesday, July 15, 2014

Sparkfriends, I need some help, insight, encouragement...whatever you got, I could probably use it right about now.

So, I'm supposed to be in the midst of my plan! Or at least PRE-planning for my ultimate plan in October. As of last week, I had proclaimed that I was done with wheat/gluten foods, and would be working towards elimination of soda for my next step. Friends, with the mess that remodel became (see previous blog for details about that), I totally didn't follow my no soda plan. I did abstain from wheat though, the entire vacation! I was so proud of myself! However, yesterday, stress reared its ugly head again, and I caved....big time.

You would think that the stress of the remodel would have taken me down for the count, but I think the fact that it was focused stress kept me from stumbling. We did eat a lot more convenience foods, but we mostly ate at home, which was my main goal. That was an accomplishment for us! Yesterday, however, was just a bad day from the start. One, it was a typical rushed Monday, with both of us scrambling around, both of us preparing to go to the office, sleep deprivation. Add on that we had the vacation fog, and the extreme remodeling exhaustion, it was just off to a bad start. And, for all these months that I thought Clark was teething and he never was, NOW he is, and has one tooth really causing him pain. So, he's been very cranky due to pain, and won't even really let me console him much when it gets bad enough--that's stressful in itself. My house is a remodel wreck, and I had SOOO much to catch up on at work. What a giant mess. Anyway, all these things led to my total abandon of health and stress stuffing deluxe yesterday. Did I mention that it was also my first day TOM? Yeah....

So the stuffing ensued. I had a reasonable breakfast, but I knew it was too small when I sat down to eat--again, time constraints. I grabbed a couple of snacks on the way out the door, healthy snacks. But, by the time lunch came around, I had had so much to deal with already, I was just in a foul mood, and wanted to eat something quickly. So we grabbed fast food, and part of that was wheat. STUPID STUPID STUPID!!! emoticon In the afternoon, I ate potato chips and had a soda. Then, when dinner came around, I was so exhausted and stressed, we just went out again. And of course, I couldn't resist the delectable breads they serve. I thought, "hey, I already had wheat at lunch. What's one......two.......three.......four, five more doses?" I went WAY too overboard with my wheat consumption and I paid for it so big time. I am still paying for it.

Here are some things that happen to me when I eat wheat:

emoticon I sneeze constantly and itch all over. Just the way I used to do when I would mow the lawn. Sneeze, itch, sneeze, itch....

emoticon Headaches and severe insomnia.

emoticon bloating, abdominal cramps, other stomach issues that I don't need to share here, nausea...you get the picture.

emoticon Mystery rashes, mainly around my feet and ankles.

emoticon Severe flare-ups of arthritis. Today alone, I can barely walk on my pain-stricken feet, my knees keep giving out, pain shooting all through my back, achy shoulders, and my hand arthritis is super painful as well.

emoticon So why do I keep doing this to myself? Why can't I just give up these foods once and for all? They do nothing but cause me physical and yes, even emotional pain. Emotional because every time I deal with this, I begin to crave those foods to bring me comfort, eat them, and then feel mad at myself for causing myself the grief of the response to exposure.

I just told Justin last night that I desire so much more than I can describe, to be mindful of the things I eat, but not obsessed with the things I cannot. I want to just be ok with eating natural, whole foods and not imagining that the grass is greener on the other side of the fence. Has anyone else ever dealt with this sort of thing? Any insight would be welcome and appreciated. Thanks for hearing my rant! emoticon

  
  Member Comments About This Blog Post:

ELSAT137 7/17/2014 10:14PM

    Hi Caiti -
I too struggle with this same issue. I think part of the root is spiritual. If you are struggling physically - Satan can tempt you. He knows just where you are weak and just what would tempt you. He is very strategic in his plan to do whatever he can to defeat you. If he can make you a mess physically - he can keep you focused on things other than God and what God has for you. I am preaching to myself here because I have been struggling with the same things. God wants to be our main and only focus. Are you getting your time in the word and time with God?When everything in life presses in- that is what we need even more- even if it seems like we don't have time. You can do it! You already have victory. Greater is he that is in you than he that is in the world!!!

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AQUAGIRL08 7/15/2014 7:22PM

    My doctor suggested to me that if I want to go gluten and wheat free, I need to substitute with something that is wheat and gluten free. He suggested keeping little brown rice bowls (Uncle Ben's) , sweet potatoes and gluten free pasta around for quick access. When I cook sweet potatoes, I fix 2-3 of them at a time and put the unused portions in the refrigerator for later use. My daughter can't have gluten. When she stays with us, I cook gluten free for all of us. Some gluten free foods have a higher calorie count but brown rice, gluten free pasta and a few other gluten free foods have fiber and protein in them. I try to look for those foods that aren't very processed if possible. I am currently experimenting to see what works for me. I am not totally gluten free myself but over time, I imagine I will be.

All it takes is pre-planning when you go to the grocery store. Since many salad dressings, sauces, ice cream, puddings can contain thickening agents made with wheat and or gluten, I make my own most of the time. I think that it takes a while to make it a habit, so please don't beat yourself up. With practice, you will automatically start making better decisions. Don't forget to ask for the special diet menus when you eat out. My daughter has taught me that chain restaurants usually have them. They list gluten free menu items, give the sodium content and a variety of other things.

Last of all, give yourself a break. (I struggle with this constantly.) I agree with the suggestions from 4MYKIDS4ME and may print off some of the suggestions too. Thanks for sharing!

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_LINDA 7/15/2014 7:11PM

    Wow! Sounds like you have a serious gluten intolerance?? And don't we all blow a gasket when things build up and something has to give? Of course we turn to our comfort foods. This set back certainly doesn't mean its over. There is never any shame in starting over again and start taking small steps towards healthier choices. The most critical thing is for you to do now is avoid wheat at all costs. You have an amazing, kind supportive hubby. You two have to decide no more eating out temptations. You both need to find the time to look after yourselves, as a team. A healthy couple is a happy couple. You are important too and worth looking after. If you are on a new Moms Spark team, ask if anyone has a home remedy for helping with teething. Maybe there is a safe topical pain reliever.
Meditation or yoga, something to bring you down, practised for a few minutes any time you can feel things building up. Kind of like a personal time out. Go to your own little world, your own corner. Just what the other lady was suggesting, breathing. Or if your stress is an angry stress, a short kickboxing workout (like Spark videos) to get the aggression out. Exercise or some form of activity has always been my stress reliever and also keeps my hands busy and away from my favorite snacks..
Being a young working Mom with a condition to deal with is Hell on Wheels. Don't know how you keep your sanity! But you are strong. You will push through this. For yourself. For your family.
You are not alone.
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VEG954 7/15/2014 3:52PM

  Sounds like your family is going thru a lot right now.
You got some excellent suggestions from the previous comment.
I ditto that.
You don't have to have a food tantrum and punish yourself let alone suffer the consequences.
Go easy on yourself.
Treat yourself like you would treat others in the same situation.
Time takes time...

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4MYKIDS4ME 7/15/2014 3:10PM

    Ok - First and foremost - stop beating yourself up - YOU ARE ONLY HUMAN - repeat after me - "I AM ONLY HUMAN"

Ok - next - know that I have no success story to tell you. I too fall off the bandwagon - apparently way more times than I get back on it (and yes, it apparently is possible to fall off something you're not even on).

So - the question really should be - how do you get back on the bandwagon - or in your case - back on your plan....

My advice:

1. Just stop and breathe. Seriously. Deep breath in from the bottom of your belly. Slowly. Count as you go. Now release the deep breath slowly, county as you exhale & pushing that breath completely out. Repeat. Do this 5 times. Do it 5 more times.

2. Write out 5 things you are grateful for. Not 3, but 5. Your choice. Write them out completely, word by word. Now read them back to yourself (out loud if you can). Commit to doing this daily - EXCEPT you're not allowed to repeat any of your gratitudes. Shoot for doing this every day for 7 days.

Now you're thinking what does this have to do with weight loss or controlling what you eat.... It doesn't exactly, but......... sometimes you need to shake things up and focus on the positives. And what do the positives show you? They show you that you CAN do what you set your mind to do. rather than focus on the one set-back, focus on the 7 good days or what have you.

So now that you are hopefully remembering all that you can do right, let's think of ways to help you do more right.

My suggestion:
Print that list you wrote here about those things that happen to you when you eat wheat and post it - on the fridge, in the pantry, at your desk, on the breadbox, on your car's glove box. Reprint it periodically with different fonts & sizes & colors and replace so they catch your eye. And just focus on that for a few a while. Everybody needs a reminder. And those things sound like things you don't enjoy experiencing - so just help yourself out and remember.... emoticon


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Remodeling is a Pretty Good Workout!

Saturday, July 12, 2014

This past week, my DH and I took off work for our annual vacation, although this year we decided to stick around and do some much needed remodel. We have been remodeling our home since we got married, and can only work on it gradually as we rebuild funding and time to do it. We hadn't done anything in a year, but that's because we have been having fun else-wise....


So, here we are starting the biggest remodel of the house. Our original thought was, "Yeah! Bathroom remodel time! We have a whole week to focus on that! Woo hoo!" I think a month wouldn't have been sufficient....Let me explain in pictures.

When we started, this was our bathroom...


Not too bad, right? Yeah, it's pretty plain and the tiles needed to be redone, and the floor replaced. The walls were already partially done and the door was previously refinished. No biggie!

We first removed the vanity and sink. Pretty easy!


Then, we removed the laminate flooring. In order that we even things out, Justin felt that it would be best to go ahead and take it down to the sub-flooring, because the stuff in between was pretty old and worn out. When we got to that, some of the sub-flooring came apart too.

This should have been the first sign that things were wrong in our bathroom, but Justin remained positive that this was such an easy fix!

Then, we started taking tiles down from the shower walls! That was fun, but again, the ease of those tiles coming down started to worry us a little.


After those came down, we pulled down the backer boards to find this....

A rotten mess all the way to the framing of the house! Whoever had replaced the tiling before did a shoddy job, and failed to adhere backer boards, or put up a vapor barrier. Thus, rotting wood. This meant that we had to remove a 53 year old cast iron tub, which we intended to keep and refinish...but after a back-breaking move of the thing, we found the floor beneath it completely rotted out, (a piece of it even fell away once the weight of the tub was lifted) and the tub was rusting out like crazy on the bottom.



That was what we found under the tub. Last night we removed all of that rotted flooring, and I haven't taken pics of that yet. So, after an entire week off from work, this is what we are left with. Thankfully we have a gym membership and there are several locations, so we can shower there.

I can't believe how hard the work has been on this bathroom. I mean, honestly we knew it was going to be a task, but really, we weren't expecting it to be this bad. It has been long days of working and feeling like we are getting nowhere. However, I think we now have it to a place where we can start the rebuilding process. It's going to take a while now that we have to go back to work. We will have maybe two hours max to work each night due to Clark's bedtime. Outside of that, it's good-bye weekends for a while. I really am thankful that we chose this time to start it though, because I honestly don't know how much longer that floor under the 300+ lb cast iron tub was going to hold up. What a giant mess that would have been in a cold winter, not to mention the dangers of it. Ugh.... makes me shudder at the thought. emoticon

Anyway, so that is what things have been like for me lately. I will still be sparking as much as I am able. I miss everyone tons! emoticon

  
  Member Comments About This Blog Post:

_LINDA 7/13/2014 12:51AM

    Wow! That is one can of worms you opened up!! So glad it was discovered before something bad happened! That is just scary!! Its a shame you couldn't afford a professional contractor to finish this up right (where is Mike Holmes when you need him?)
Good luck with it, don't envy you :(

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VEG954 7/12/2014 11:35AM

  Did you ever see a movie called The Money Pit?
Your blog really reminded me of that movie.
I can relate... When I bought my condo I had a mini disaster.
It was easy to remedy and felt I was done.
Then came a hurricane and had many leaks, a blown out window, broken beyond repair central cooling and heating unit. and soaked carpet.
Along with all that the upstairs condo had both toilets leaking thru my ceilings, then their hot water heater caused another leak.
About half of my ceilings had to be replaced after the mold was removed.
Carpet was replaced and closets were rebuilt.
A few years go by and am grateful all is well.
Then a car drove into my kitchen and entry.
Had to move out for 9 months.
Reconstruction took forever.
Now fast forward... Insurance paid for all of the crash repairs!
I am back home and am, once again, a happy camper.

Wish you and yours the best!

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Coming up with a Plan

Tuesday, July 01, 2014

For the past several weeks, I have been so busy with so much. Work this time of year is always very crazy for me as it is the end of our fiscal year. That means lots of extra hours (sometimes even at night) and not a lot of time to dedicate to me. Add on that I had company for about two solid weeks, and it has been a pretty crazy month.

I'm very ready to get back to my daily routine again. During this time, I haven't been eating the healthiest, nor have I had the time to exercise the way I would want. I did do well during June about not eating out constantly though. I'm just afraid to step on the scale. I believe I have come up with a plan that will work for me though.

I think one of the reasons I hit a wall with everything is because I tried to take on too much at one time. I felt invincible, and then I hit rock bottom when it all caught up to me. I had this huge realization all at once that there are foods that I just don't need in my life anymore. So, when it caught up to me, I felt helpless, and I turned to all of the foods I knew I didn't need for comfort. Since then, I have gotten back into counseling and that has helped me tremendously. One of the things I have done through that process was sit down and compile a list of memories attached to food to discover the source of my food addiction. Thankfully, it wasn't so much an issue of food attachment, but emotional attachment that just happened to be surrounding food times, so to speak. Once again, my dysfunctional familial relationships are haunting me from afar through another avenue. Ugh. Nonetheless, my counselor said that my seven pages, single-spaced memory recollection that dated back all the way to age 4-ish was remarkable, particularly since it is related to food. She also stated that I was able to do the one thing counselors BEG people with eating disorders to do, which is relate to food situations and recall all environmental factors. I guess I'm closer to healing than I really realized.

All that being said, I have not shared too much publicly about what my future plans are for my journey to total health. I have kicked it around, and for now, I feel like it is mostly a private matter, (although I am willing to answer any questions if my sparkfriends want to know.) emoticon I don't want to share for a few reasons; one, my insecurity level right now is through the roof. Here I was at the beginning of the year, doing remarkably well with weight loss and fitness, then BOOM...total fall out. I became depressed, withdrawn, and found myself lacking interest in my health. I haven't mentioned here, but I was so down-trodden for a while, I even kicked around smoking again! emoticon Now, that's LOOOOOW. I think I am through that for the most part now though. Another reason I hesitate to fully share my plan also is because it is extreme. I will write a disclaimer and say that I have been given the go-ahead by my doctors, and have also been told that my plan will be fully overseen by them. But, it is extreme, and I know that for it to work for me, I will have to fully trust in God. I know this from my experience of quitting smoking--can't do it without Him.

Once I feel comfortable, I will definitely share my plans here openly. For now, I would really just like to get back on track with everyone here, pick up reading blogs every day, and just checking in with my friends. I hope this blog finds all of you well!

  
  Member Comments About This Blog Post:

GIGERNREZNOR 7/7/2014 8:03PM

    Are you going to try raw? A friend of mine at work is eating raw now and is doing great. She's had some recent cancer scares, so I think that's part of it, for her. I was personally thinking of trying it for a week to at least detox and see what it does for my energy levels. I may wait until I'm done nursing, however. Anyhow, that's one of the most "extreme" food movements I can think of, so yeah. Are you still nursing?

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DNJEN471 7/7/2014 11:20AM

    Your awesome! And will achieve your goals, I'm sure of it!!

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DNJEN471 7/7/2014 11:20AM

    Your awesome! And will achieve your goals, I'm sure of it!!

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DSHONEYC 7/2/2014 11:08AM

    You got the right first step...

4 So you will find favor and good repute In the sight of God and man. 5 Trust in the LORD with all your heart And do not lean on your own understanding. 6 In all your ways acknowledge Him, And He will make your paths straight. Prov 3:5

When discouraged, frustrated, hurt or angry I give it to Him. The burden is lifted and I can move forward, trusting that the Lord will show me the way.

Whatever you need ... emoticon

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JSPIN74 7/2/2014 8:58AM

    emoticon emoticon

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POOKASLUAGH 7/2/2014 7:08AM

    I'm sorry things have been so low for you, but I'm glad to hear they're starting to look up. I wouldn't mind hearing more about the plan you've worked out with your doctors, privately. :)

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JD394471 7/2/2014 12:55AM

    Caiti,
I know you can do it.
We all have set backs but you are a strong woman, and I have a lot of confidence iny you. (just please do not go back to smoking)
anything I can do, just let me know.
Love,
Donna

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_LINDA 7/2/2014 12:33AM

    Wow! I am so glad you are supervision by medical personnel and have their approval for this extreme plan of yours!! Every time I read about Spark friends going on strange diets I worry for their health. But you are at least being smart about it! You are determined to get on track and it sounds like you have a great team to help you along the way!
Keep us updated if you can!
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THEEXERCISER 7/1/2014 11:47PM

    emoticon

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Putting the Scale Away

Tuesday, May 27, 2014

Good morning! It's a lovely Tuesday morning after a nice long weekend of MUCH NEEDED rain. It rained off and on all weekend long and it was amazing! emoticon We have been in a serious drought for a long time now, and with the threat of wildfires and blazing temperatures in the summers, it's always welcome to rain as much as it wants!

The past week has been amazing for me in every way--physically, mentally, spiritually...just great! I can't believe how much better I have felt just by eating the foods I know will heal me. My joints are starting to not ache as much, my stomach is feeling much better again-no antacids in three days, my allergies are going away again. What a giant relief and when I feel better physically, everything else pretty much falls into place.

One thing I have decided to do for a while is to put the scale away. It is literally under my house. Justin hid it there because he knows the temptation to get on the scale will surpass at the thought of me having to climb in a tiny confined place just to get to it. Could I go weigh myself at the gym? Certainly! But, I usually stay away from other scales because they all vary so much. I know for me personally, weighing on a constant basis is detrimental for my emotional health. So, I'm eating healthy, I'm getting exercise, I'm taking all of my supplements, and I'm in a better place. No emoticon needed to make me feel any better.

I also cleaned out my wardrobe this long weekend. I got rid of all the clothes that are much too big for me; as tempting as it is to want to hide underneath loads of fabric, it doesn't help my emotional stability. Additionally, I cleaned out clothes that are much too skinny for me. While I always believed that it was a positive thing to hang on to "goal" clothes, I'm not too sure I feel this way anymore. I really think that wearing clothes on my body the way it is in the present is the healthiest thing for me to do.

Anyway, I hope everyone has an amazing week ahead of them! emoticon

  
  Member Comments About This Blog Post:

RIDMYCOCOON 5/27/2014 12:45PM

    emoticon emoticon

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DNJEN471 5/27/2014 12:38PM

    I need to go through my closet as well. It's not doing me any good to wear big baggy clothes. emoticon

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_LINDA 5/27/2014 11:04AM

    emoticon emoticon emoticon
You have taken a great burden off your mind and releasing all those cages of clothing too big too small and the scale. Accepting yourself for who you are now is the best thing you could have done. Getting back to the healthy eating that is making you feel good is more motivation to continue! Was very happy to see this great news this morning, brightened my day!
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JOHNMARTINMILES 5/27/2014 10:48AM

    It is good not to be a slave to the scale when there are so many other benchmarks against which to measure oneself

Make Today the Greatest Day of Your Life

emoticon Until Tomorrow!


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SAASHA17 5/27/2014 10:39AM

    good thought process...u can do this!! woohoo...



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