DIANITAH   46,186
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Peace Corps again!

Thursday, September 11, 2014

I've been a way from SP for a while. My life has been in a whirl since April when I accepted a position with Peace Corps Response.

Since May, I've quit my job, moved out of my condo and moved to another country.

This is my second spin with Peace Corps. I served in Moldova from 1995-97. I was an English Teacher and Teacher Trainer.

I now serve with Peace Corps Response, which are shorter term assignments for people with specialized skills. I am now working for the the Costa Rican Ministry of Public Education in Nicoya, Guanacaste (near the Pacific coast). I'll be here 11 more months.

A big reason for moving here was to find some balance in an extremely stressed out life. I knew my workaholic ways were contributing greatly to my weight problem back in the US.

Now that I've been at site a month, I've been able to make some good adjustments in my lifestyle:

Work hours here are SANE. People work hard for sure but there is time built into the day for lunch and people actually sit down and eat (and chat and enjoy). Some days I can even take a short siesta (rest or nap). People also go home at their end time. My office closes at 3 and we have to leave so security can close up.

People walk everywhere. Even people who have cars would not think to take it to run a quick errand. You go to the bank, the store, the pharmacy, everywhere on foot. I live close to my job and walk there too. People also walk to socialize and see their neighbors.

It's so dang hot that I don't want to eat. Daily temps hover between 85 here (and this is winter time). I will think I'm hungry but when I sit down to eat, a heavy meal is never appealing. The big meal is midday and at night we just eat a piece of fruit or have some toast.

Abundance of fresh fruit and veggies. My chocolate habit is history (helps that chocolate is really expensive here). Now I want watermelon or pineapple or bananas or carambola. If I have a sweet craving, I get a fresh fruit shake with no sugar (mango, strawberry, pineapple being my favorite).

Water is essential. Since it's so hot, I have to push water. Grant it, I sweat a lot too. I drink gallons a day I swear! My skin is also loving this warmer, moister weather. Nicoya is also famous for minerals in its water that are supposed to be super healthy. If my skin, nails and hair are any indicator, there IS something in that water.

So many beautiful places to see. I live 30-40 minutes from the beach so it's a quick day trip. I love to walk on the shore and before I know it, I've walked an hour. Same goes for the nearby forests and reserves. There are volcanos to climb, rain forests to hike. So much to see and do.

I spoke to the Peace Corps doctor and he said most volunteers in this part of the country lose weight with the heat and eating changes. I lost 14 pounds my first month at site which startled me. I knew I had been doing well but.... He just said to be sure that I didn't lose that much every month. But we put together a plan and I am determined to get off the last forty pounds that I have been carrying. It really is time to change everything.

Samara Beach, not far from my house.

  


Hiking boots as inspiration!

Wednesday, April 23, 2014

I am a finalist for an amazing job in a tropical country. I don't want to give details at the moment for fear of jinxing it. Even if I don't get this job, I will be traveling internationally in the next few months. Regardless of what happens, I know some hiking in wildlife reserves will be involved.

I went to REI today to look at hiking boots. I haven't bought a new pair in almost twenty years. I still have my last pair. They are big, hulking and ugly! When I served in the Peace Corps, my students always complained that they were so unfeminine. lol I didn't care because they kept me warm and on my feet. I knew from looking online that styles have gotten sleeker and more lightweight. I found some of the coolest stuff!! I found a couple of pairs I liked and thank goodness for cell phones, I took pics. I'm going to do some more research online.

I'm so excited to use them and see some more beautiful places.

I also checked out the women's department. I'm only a size away to fitting into some of the really cool travel wear. I want to get some pants that are super lightweight and easy to wash/dry. They aren't cheap but I actually found a pair that are really nice looking.

It just motivates me to keep walking and keep making good choices.

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  Member Comments About This Blog Post:

PATSYB7 4/24/2014 8:00AM

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LIZSPRINGSTEEN 4/23/2014 9:47PM

    YOU CAN DO IT! I have a dress I'm trying to fit into, and that will be soon!

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Starbucks...

Saturday, April 19, 2014

I really do not like Starbucks at all (too many reasons to mention). I tend to patronize our incredible local coffee houses. As a teacher, I receive a lot of gift cards over the holidays. Many students opt for coffee since they know I enjoy it. How can I refuse such a thoughtful gift?

Yesterday, after running around I decided to stop for a coffee. I had no cash on me to go to my normal place but there is a Starbucks a few blocks from my house and I had one of my gift certificates. I went in and ordered a mocha. I knew that these flavored drinks have a lot of calories but I hadn't eaten too much and decided to consider it a dessert splurge. I came home and was still drinking it when I logged on here to list it. I almost passed out when I saw it was over 500 calories!!! OMG. For some reason, I thought it was in the 300s somewhere. That drink was more calories than my healthy breakfast. smh Luckily I hadn't drunk it all and tossed half of it. I was pretty glad I had bought it with a gift card. Anyway, back to skinny lattes or plain coffee for the rest of the gift cards! It was a good reminder that I should have just done a quick check on my phone before ordering. Being lazy cost me a lot of calories.

  
  Member Comments About This Blog Post:

TRACYZABELLE 4/19/2014 2:30PM

    I try to get a lite latte.. skim milk and I prefer the blonde roast

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LIZSPRINGSTEEN 4/19/2014 1:03PM

    I barely ever have Starbucks anymore, mainly for that reason!

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GODDREAMDIVA1 4/19/2014 11:48AM

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BIGDOG18 4/19/2014 11:32AM

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Easter Baskets

Friday, April 18, 2014

I do not have my own children but I have five godchildren. I love creating Easter baskets for them but then obviously I am confronted by all those temptations.

I went to Target last week and went a little crazy. I came home and realized that I had purchased some of my greatest temptations (yeah for the kids, right?). I thought this is bad! So I didn't open anything and took half of it back. I felt a little weird taking bags of candy back at first. Of course, they didn't bat an eyelash! I got each child a chocolate bunny and then kept all the candy I didn't like! I also bought a bunch of small toys and coloring books.

Just relieved my head took over!

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  Member Comments About This Blog Post:

JAWATKINS 4/20/2014 1:19PM

    Good for you, taking back the tempting candy!!
emoticon healthy step!! They all add up!!

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DIANITAH 4/19/2014 11:21AM

    The baskets still look awesome. Can't wait to go over. I think the kids will enjoy the books and toys more anyway. I think their parents will also be happy for less candy.

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TRACYZABELLE 4/18/2014 11:55PM

    I still make a basket got my now 27 yr old.. come a long way since jellybeans and bunnies!

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ELSCO55 4/18/2014 10:01PM

    good for you

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DEB62BIE62 4/18/2014 3:48PM

    emoticon WalMart had the neatest eggs. They were better than plastic, but you can dye them and decorate them. I bought some for my grandchildren. They were really cool. I always hated to dye real eggs cause I was always afraid to eat them, these were really wonderful, cause you can keep them forever.

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LIZSPRINGSTEEN 4/18/2014 12:11PM

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BRAINBENTT 4/18/2014 10:27AM

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So salty!

Thursday, April 17, 2014

Okay so I'm playing on words here.

If you are a bit "older" or less urban, you may not know "salty" has been around for a long time among urban teenagers to mean "you're wrong." I'm sure it has seeped into the suburbs/small towns too.

I was feeling really salty yesterday. Literally and figuratively.

On Tuesday I had eaten processed pre-made meals for two of my meals. One frozen/one boxed. UGH yesterday I felt so off and so thirsty. I woke up feeling salty. I cook most of my own meals and rarely use prepared meals. I was in a pinch because I'm in the middle of packing up my condo for a move. Yeah, I don't care how busy I get, I have to make better choices.

I'm so done being salty.

  
  Member Comments About This Blog Post:

KAMMYJO3 4/17/2014 10:58PM

    It is surprising once you start to eat healthy how salty some foods really are!! Hope your move goes well. :)

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PEZMOM1 4/17/2014 9:45AM

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