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Oh, no, potluck night!

Tuesday, June 11, 2013

Yeah, here it is...potluck night. What to do? I wasn't feeling great this morning and didn't want to go out to get something to fix, so I decided to go, get it set up, and get it started, (you know, welcome everyone, get someone to pray over the food, etc.) and then come home. I've done it before and it works pretty well, usually.
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BUT I found out this afternoon that some of my friends who never go to potlucks anymore, were coming to this one. Well, I can't let my friends get together without ME, can I? So I came home to raid the cupboard for something to fix. The cupboard is a little bare right now.
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I cooked up some vermicelli and put in a can of Hunt's Chunky Vegetable spaghetti sauce, a can of green beans and a can of corn. It doesn't look pretty, but I tasted it and it tasted great. Remember, I was hungry. And if I have to bring a bunch of it home, at least it's healthy.
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So I won't promise not to eat a little something I shouldn't, but I'll keep it LITTLE. See you around the blog-ateria.
Lots of love,
Janet

  
  Member Comments About This Blog Post:

IMSOOZEEQ 6/12/2013 6:44AM

    Mom, that is great thinking on your feet! It sounds good to me! I hope you had a good time and that you spent lots of time mingling with your friends!

Love you!

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SPEEDY143 6/12/2013 3:45AM

    emoticon yum... nice save and a sweet way to spend time with old friends emoticon

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JILL313 6/12/2013 12:29AM

    Hi Janet, I hope you had a great time at the Buffet sharing food and good conversation with your friends. Wow, your dish sounds tasty and I doubt I'd have enough imagination to come up with it. Good Bless and Take very good care of yourself.

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EJOY-EVELYN 6/11/2013 11:54PM

    I love your creativity! Nice save!

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NANCYPAT1 6/11/2013 11:22PM

    Sounds like you made a great choice and you will have a good time and definitely have something to eat that you love. That sort of thing usually disappears FIRST at our potlucks. Bet you don't have much to take home.

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BELDONDOG1 6/11/2013 10:30PM

    Well, Janet, I'm sure we'll all be anxious to find out how you did--but I'm sure you did well! I agree with Karen, you are very inventive! (hugs) Noel

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TXMEMAW6 6/11/2013 9:29PM

    Hope you have fun at the pot luck! Congrats on being able to find something to fix from the cupboard. Take care and know hugs are coming your way!

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ROXYZMOM 6/11/2013 8:40PM

    Sounds great to me! Have fun!!

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VTMAID 6/11/2013 7:18PM

    You ladies are pretty inventive!
Hugs,
Karen

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IOWAGRAMMA 6/11/2013 7:07PM

    That's being pretty creative, Janet!! Good thinking (and shopping in your own cupboard)!! I got a call today to fix a salad for a funeral luncheon tomorrow and did NOT want to go to town to buy something, so I did what you did. Raided the cupboards! cooked up some twisty pasta, nuked a bag of mixed vegetables, dumped them together and added about 1/2 bottle lite Italian dressing. Tomorrow I'll add a couple chopped Roma tomatoes I have in the fridge and that's all they're getting!

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One week down...reached a compromise

Tuesday, June 11, 2013

I consider this a successful week. I ate out at Denny's once, had a piece and a half of cake at a graduation party, and a piece of cake and some sherbet at a birthday party. But I stayed in or below calorie range.
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I started the week with one day of water only fasting. This was a spiritual thing, but also enabled me to enjoy the taste of food afterward. If you've been eating a bunch of junk and want to switch to healthy, it helps if you are hungry. I've heard it said Hunger is the best sauce.
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I've been trying to figure what to do about eating out when two friends keep wanting me to go with them. Denny's is usually the place we go. I want to thank those of you who gave me some good suggestions on my last blog.
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Someone suggested that we go to Subway. I actually did suggest Subway when my ex asked me to eat out. He wanted to sit down and be waited on. I like Subway because it isn't real expensive and I can get the Veggie Delight sub and stay on my plan. Plus I really like it. The next day I went and picked one up to take home.
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Several people suggested that I invite them to my house, or that we take turns cooking for each other. 1. My ex doesn't cook. 2. I don't cook any more than I have to. 3. My friends are NOT even a little bit interested in healthy eating. 4. My program is plant-based and they aren't going to want to eat my food, nor I theirs.
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One or more suggested finding healthy things on the Denny's menu. Now this is where the compromise comes in. Denny's is not really into healthy food. The Fitfare menu that someone mentioned may be fine for many but it is largely based on meat, eggs, and dairy. No-nos for me. So, I will go with them to Denny's not more than once a week, and I will order a side salad w/my own dressing and red skin potatoes cooked w/o oil or fat. I did that today. While there, I found they have whole wheat pancakes and sugar free syrup that is only 30 calories for 1/4 cup. So I may have that occasionally.
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Having come to that compromise, now I am viewing potlucks and BBQs to find healthier options for those. Usually I have just tried not to go too far off course, but eaten whatever was there. I really feel having reached this one compromise solution, it has helped me to see that with a little more forethought, I can be consistent with my eating even through those special days.
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Oh, yes, exercise has kind of been on hold this week. I did a little early in the week, but the end of the week got pretty hectic with two graduations and a birthday party. I know, no excuse is a good excuse.
SO, I was good on the water front and pretty good on the eating front, and this week I will add more consistent exercise. I can do this thing, with the help of God and my great Sparkfriends.
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Love you all,
Janet

  
  Member Comments About This Blog Post:

BELDONDOG1 6/11/2013 10:39PM

    Sue, you beat me to it--I was going to tell your mom also to take something yummy for her to the potlucks. At least she could have something and not feel guilty. I have no problems with potlucks. I have it in my head that if just one person has a cat or dog, cats especially, I will find a cat hair in my food, so I just drink my water. Too bad I can't think that way about all the food that keeps tempting me. Good Luck Janet and God Bless! (hugs) Noel

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KSNANA2 6/11/2013 9:52AM

    I think you are doing an excellent job figuring out how to eat out and stay on track. Since I retired it seems like eating out is what my extended family likes to do to catch up on each others lives. I am not vegan but I am trying to eat much less meat and more veggie based meals. My body does not like sudden changes! I love some of the advice I find here! Thanks!!!

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NANCYPAT1 6/11/2013 7:58AM

    I think you made some really good decisions. It is easy for us who are not there to see possible ideas for others but you sound like you took into account the REALITIES of the situation and have found a solution for how you can make it work. Eating cake at graduation parties is completely reasonable - fitting it into your HEALTHY eating and calorie ranges is PRICELESS. I am glad you are finding solutions that work for YOU and allow you to keep your ex and your friend part of your social life. Good for you!! and actually for them too.

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SWEETYOUNGTHING 6/11/2013 7:26AM

    Like it or not, our mis steps teach us things. I've only been vegan for a little over 6 months now and am constantly learning how to maneuver around menus when eating out. I ask the server what they suggest. A number of times they get excited and say "oh one of our other waitresses is a vegan. Let me get her for you!" The people I'm eating with, I'm sure, are initially thinking "oh geez" but they always learn something.

Lead by example

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ROXYZMOM 6/11/2013 7:23AM

    I would be up front with the ex - you are trying to meet half way and still go out to eat even though you are on a diet, but he has to meet half way and understand that you will only go out to eat at restaurants that offer healthy choices. My family knows that there I have a list of restaurants I will not dine in for that reason - its just the way it is!

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HEALTHY4UNI 6/11/2013 5:03AM

    It is great to hear a positive update. As you open up your mind and take control of your options, what once sounded impossible starts to become possible! Good for you! And Thanks for your reply and encouragements!
Be Blessed as you pursue your unique and personal path to victory!

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IMSOOZEEQ 6/11/2013 2:34AM

    Mom, you are making some great strides! I think you might look at a good potluck dish that fits your plan to take with you. That way you have something that you know you like and can eat within your program. You can do it!!!

Love you!!

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STEPH-KNEE 6/11/2013 1:14AM

    I am glad to hear you are doing well! emoticon emoticon

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TORTILLAFLATS 6/11/2013 12:42AM

    Janet, I hear you---We have so many get together pot lucks at church or Eat at our home groups. I am always in a dilemma about going anywhere. It really stresses me out. I have found a few places I enjoy eating but I am not just a plant eater so that must really be hard for you---Good Luck.

Hugs, Gail

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LEANGIRL22 6/11/2013 12:38AM

    You have to find your own way in this program and it takes a little while to determine what will work and what will not work for you for the long haul. One step at a time though and you will know what is doable and I am proud of you for the changes you have already made!

You can do this!

Sheila emoticon

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I made a stand, but can I stand here?

Thursday, June 06, 2013

Okay, my friend called me today and suggested eating out. I ate out with him yesterday. We went to Denny's, a frequent stand-by. I had the turkey and avocado grilled sandwich. When I checked at home to see how many calories were in it, SHOCK! THERE ARE 800 CALORIES IN THE SANDWICH ALONE. Fortunately I was able to minimize the damage and stay within my calorie range, but it sure was an eye-opener.
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So when he called and asked if I wanted to eat out, I said NO. This is my ex-husbnd. We are still friends. It's hard not to be when you have 3 children and 7 grandchildren in common. We even live in the same building. He has re-married, but his wife is in a nursing home. He is very faithful about visiting her, but her memory is going so he doesn't get much conversation from her. I feel sorry for him spending hours at the nursing home, then eating out by himself.
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I also have a next-door neighbor who likes to eat out and often goes with us. She is disappointed when we don't go. She won't go with him without me, I'm not sure why, but she won't. I feel like I'm letting them down when I don't go out to eat.
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But I need to say NO for my own sake. I cannot eat out and stay on my program and stay within my budget. The trouble is, we women of my generation were not raised to think of ourselves first. So I've made the first step. I've said NO. Now I need to keep saying NO to them and also to myself, because eating out is one of my favorite things.
NO! NO! NO! (just practicing)
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So, you may have noticed I once again changed my profile pic. It is to more accurately reflect where I am now. So this is my beginning pic. I will change them back as I lose weight.
My first three days have gone well. I've been drinking water, increasing gradually my walking minutes, and staying within my plan. So I'm pretty proud of ME. I know if (no not if) AS I keep it up the pounds will begin to fall off again. I sure feel better thinner.
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Keep on Sparking my friends, emoticon emoticon
Love, Janet

  
  Member Comments About This Blog Post:

EJOY-EVELYN 6/8/2013 2:47AM

    Like Lynn, there are many better choices at Denny's and other restaurants. I find the sodium is even harder to control when eating out, especially when I enjoy a cup of soup. My best to you as you choose wisely to stay the course to eat healthy. Hug, hug -- Evelyn.

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LYNNWANNABE 6/7/2013 2:35AM

    I went out a couple of weeks ago to Denny's and as I started to order my brother took over and he ordered me everything I wanted but in diet form; did you know Denny's had a diet menu and that their breakfast omelets can be made with egg whites and veggies? Plus, they had turkey bacon .. I even asked for dry fried hashbrowns [meaning as little oil as possible] all the calories are on the SP tracker too.
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Next time research your options on-line first... then you can eat out without feeling bad. emoticon emoticon

Comment edited on: 6/7/2013 2:39:23 AM

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BELDONDOG1 6/6/2013 8:10PM

    Good for you, Janet! You have made some great rules and plans and yes, I think you can stand by them. And if you can't, I'm sure you can find something cheap and healthy to eat out. Well, maybe not:) How about cooking something for your friend and your 'ex' and then you don't have to feel badly about her feeling let down. Good Luck, I know that you can do whatever you put your mind to. So far it's lasted three days and it will last many more! Love you!

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GRANDMA1951 6/6/2013 11:41AM

    Good for you. It's hard to say No, especially since you feel guilty. But, you need to do it for YOU. I like the suggestion of eating in, although I'm not sure the other two people would agree. Good luck.

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IOWAGRAMMA 6/6/2013 11:07AM

    Great work, Janet. Others have already give you suggestions on how to manage eating out or choosing where to go, etc., so I won't say anymore. Especially since it seems that you really don't want to go. An occasional meal out might be fine, but not all the time, right? You'll get it all figured out, I'm sure. Great progress (and I hear you on those sandwiches that turn into gut-busters...yikes!!) Love, Jeannie

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EVELYN112011 6/6/2013 10:30AM

    emoticon Sometimes it is so hard to say "no", but sometimes you need to in order to take care of yourself. Good job!

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SEWINGMAMACDS 6/6/2013 10:08AM

    Great at saying No!

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ROXYZMOM 6/6/2013 7:58AM

    Researching restaurants and their menus in the area always helps me. I look at their nutrition menu and decide what I am going to get before I go. Do you have a Subway near you? They have some good options.

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NANCYPAT1 6/6/2013 7:15AM

    It sounds like you made a major decision last night - it is hard to say NO especially when it is for such a SELFING reason like taking care of YOURSELF. I had stayed close with my ex husband and am now friends with his widow on FB. His death in January was VERY hard for me.

There are a number of ways to minimize the damage - why not offer to have both him and your other friend come to your house and fix a HEALTHY meal - agree that what you all will do is pitch in together to prepare the meal and use the savings for a really nice restaurant once in a while? Or alternate whose home to eat at or take a picnic and meet someplace where you can enjoy the company without the temptations of too much of too many foods you are trying to avoid.

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SWEETYOUNGTHING 6/6/2013 5:43AM

    When we go out to eat, I seem to be the most boring (but healthiest) eater at the table. I find it helpful to research a restaurants menu before going - if possible - so you know what you're getting into. It takes lots of thought and for planning.

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STEPH-KNEE 6/6/2013 3:45AM

    I am so with you, it is so depressing when even the "healthier" options still put us at like 1200 calories for the meal. It's so not fair lol.

That is so great that you are still friends with your exhusband, and it is hard when the social hour is revolving around food. Is there anyway you can spend time with him doing different stuff, like going for a walk? Or you can invite him over to eat what healthier dinner you have planned? I don't want you to miss out on life and company of others, but I am proud of you for saying no to the eating out. emoticon

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RETURNTOTHIN 6/6/2013 2:58AM

    I LOVE to eat out, but once I see the menu and smell the food, I eat way too much and somehow things always have more calories than if I make at home. GOOD FOR YOU that you recognized the need to say NO and THEN DID IT!! emoticon

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HEALTHY4UNI 6/6/2013 2:31AM

    Good for you! Good for recognizing the problem and then doing something about it! Maybe deciding to eat in with friends can be an option to consider. Then you eat what you want and get to socialize with or support your friends! Maybe it could become a rotation amongst you all! Just a suggestion! It is nice to hear that you are considerate of your affect on them and hopefully they know it as well!

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Okay, I finally bit the bullet

Monday, June 03, 2013

Well, I've been biting everything else, so I finally subscribed to an internet service. I have been relying on the free wi-fi in my building and it has become almost non-existent. That is why I haven't been Sparking lately, or it is the main reason. I'm glad to be back.
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My first year of Spark has come to an end. It went great at first. I lost 40 lbs and arrived in Onederland in September. By November I had lost 51 lbs to hit 189. I felt great. I was starting to look good. I had a lot of clothes that I pulled out of storage could wear comfortably. I was getting a lot of compliments. I had joined a gym and was going pretty regularly.
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Then things started going wrong. I had a friend who liked to eat out but didn't want to eat alone. At first I went out with him occasionally, which didn't hurt my weight loss, but then it got to be more frequent. Then the holiday parties, the gifts of chocolates, then the purchase of chocolates. I began to go out with other people for lunches and dinners, then I went out by myself. Now I hardly ever ate on my plan. It was easier to eat sandwiches or go out.
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At first it wasn't noticeable. But then I began to see bigger bulges, especially in the midriff. I viewed them with alarm, but no change in habits. The scale was going up, but I didn't look at it very often, the news I could see in my body was even more alarming.
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Now I'm viewing those bulges with horror. This morning I saw that I had put 40 lbs. back on. I have almost nothing to wear. I'm breathing hard if I walk very far. I have no energy and don't want to go anywhere. I'm not totally hibernating, but I have no ambition and no desire to do anything. I'm in a lot of mild to moderate pain, even when I'm sitting.
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Today, I have drawn a line in the sand. I'm headed back to Onederland and beyond. I realize I'm not a helpless victim. I was willfully putting that food in my mouth. It was ME buying it at the store or the restaurant, and ME gobbling it down and looking for more. This is MY responsibility. I am not pitiful, I am powerful. And I'm going to beat this thing. I am woman, hear me roar!
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Thanks to all of you who have continued to support and encourage me while I have been without internet. I started to name names, but you know I'd forget someone and I wouldn't want to hurt anyone's feelings. You know who you are. I love you all.
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I'm Sparking again!
Janet

  
  Member Comments About This Blog Post:

EJOY-EVELYN 6/5/2013 10:39PM

    This is the first day of the rest of your life.
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JILL313 6/5/2013 12:14AM

    Hi Janet, It's great having you back as you were missed. I know you've learned a hard lesson as for the rest of our lives we do have to eat well but healthier and lighter than we do now. . .getting even 10 minutes of exercise a day will also help you move forward. I have complete Faith in you and I know you'll soon be in Onderland again. I'm here rooting you on and I hope to be there myself towards the end of the year. We both have to be consistent with only occasional treats and pre-planning our meals. I love to eat out but know it's more expensive and usually I eat more calories when I eat out. I'm working on me and you're working on you so we have a lot in common as we're both still a wonderful work in progress on this new Lifestyle Journey. Take good care and God Bless.

Love,

Jill emoticon emoticon emoticon emoticon emoticon emoticon emoticon emoticon emoticon

Comment edited on: 6/5/2013 12:16:03 AM

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NANCYPAT1 6/4/2013 10:19PM

    Sounds like you walked a path so many of us have walked too - YOU are here BEFORE you regained ALL the weight you lost and you have not QUIT - all you have to do now is make the changes and figure out how to make those meals with friends fit into a reasonable plan. There are tricks to eating out AND staying on track - checking menus out in advance, eating a little less for some days before you go out, drink water, coffee, or tea, before you start eating, put HALF your meal in a to-go box, share an entree with someone else, etc. Just some thoughts to keep you moving FORWARD.

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PYNETREE 6/4/2013 2:31PM

    emoticon You did it before, now do it again!

Make lifestyle changes, so you don't backslide!

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CTUPTON 6/4/2013 12:17PM

    Welcome back. Remember how great it was to wear your smaller clothes and not have to breathe hard. Chris emoticon emoticon

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LINTPICKER 6/4/2013 7:41AM

    yay! you!

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FUSIONFITNESS3 6/4/2013 1:55AM

    So glad you're back again. Even happier that you're ready to get back on track again. I know it tough, I know it's easy to get distracted along the way, I know from experience. You've done it before and you can do it again. One day at a time.
Maria

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MOMFAN 6/4/2013 12:23AM

    emoticon

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ROXYZMOM 6/3/2013 11:07PM

    I am glad you got your Internet worked out and are back! Good for you for taking the bull by the horns! You got this!

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IMSOOZEEQ 6/3/2013 10:53PM

    Mom, I am so glad you are back! I have had the same issues well without the friend eating out thingy. lol I have been doing all my eating at home. Vic and I both have been struggling and instead of us working together to get back on track, we have been enabling each other to eat crappy food! No bueno!!! It is time to get moving in the right direction and I am so glad that I read your blog today. I needed that. emoticon MOM!!!! I know we can!

Love you!!! emoticon

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BELDONDOG1 6/3/2013 10:43PM

    I am hearing you ROAR and I know that you can and will do it! I am wishing you the very best of luck and a lot of prayers! Love you, Janet! (hugs) Noel

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TXMEMAW6 6/3/2013 9:31PM

    Good job getting back on track! Just take it one meal at a time and soon you'll be back to feeling and looking great! Have a wonderful and healthy week! And it's good to see you back Sparking with us! Hugs!

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STEPH-KNEE 6/3/2013 9:00PM

    I think we all have set backs and it's what we do with the knowledge that comes from them that counts! You are ready to move forward and you can take all that you've learned with you right back to Onederland! emoticon emoticon

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CJMOK1121 6/3/2013 8:48PM

    Janet: Thank you for sharing, its so easy to get caught up in that cycle of going out to eat or eating whats easy and the lbs can sneak back so quickly. But as Jeanie said we can do this together. I did the same thing I had lost about 45 lbs and then I just went back to old habits and gained about 30 of it back, I have been doing better for a while now and trying to get my A1C back in the 6.0 range instead of 8.2 which is what it was in April when they last took it. I just really don't want to have to start using shots to control it, when all it takes is eating healthy. So glad your back and I will work together with you to get healthy.

Hugs, CJ from OK.

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STRIVERONE 6/3/2013 8:30PM

    We have no control over the past, but a great deal over the future. So you are in a good place.

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IOWAGRAMMA 6/3/2013 7:37PM

    Oh, Janet...I so hear what you're saying!! Good for you for getting back in the swing of things and moving forward again to better health and everything related to it!! Let's do it, Friend!!! We both want to do it and know how, so away we go!! Love, Jeannie
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MISSB8604 6/3/2013 7:14PM

    You're not alone in this, your SparkFriends are here. Work hard and those pounds WILL come off.

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To Steph-knee and the red shoes bunch.

Thursday, May 02, 2013

I'm not forgetting our challenges. I'll be working on my end and rooting for all of you while I'm away. We can (and will) do this thing. I love you all,
Keep sparking!
Janet

  
  Member Comments About This Blog Post:

JILL313 5/3/2013 10:31PM

    Hi Janet, take the time you need right now but you'll be missed. . .I hope life is good for you and soon you'll feel like coming back. Take good care of Yourself.

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IOWAGRAMMA 5/3/2013 2:13PM

    Awesome! Good for you!! Look forward to hearing more from you soon! emoticon emoticon

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STEPH-KNEE 5/3/2013 1:38AM

    You are so sweet and amazing, and I can't wait til you can get back on here and update us all on all of your progress, because I know you are doing this and making great progress!! emoticon emoticon emoticon

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LYNNWANNABE 5/3/2013 1:02AM

    Going to miss you.. emoticon

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ESILBO 5/3/2013 12:03AM

    SAME HERE JANET. ON AND OFF BUT I AM NOT AS GOOD FOR FOOD. I HAVE TI WORK HARDER ON THAT...LOL.

WE WILL WEAR THOSE RED SHOES, ONE DAY.
LOVE
LISE

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