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Oct. 2014

Tuesday, September 30, 2014

Sept. was ...long and hot.

My honey thinks that because I was grumpy once Sweet September was bust. I disagree. I know that hunger or sleepiness or feeling frazzled are not good states for me. He gets that, but he thought magically I would be sweeter even at those times. Overall, I was. One day I wasn't. I'm human. I'll keep being as sweet as I would like others to be and I know that there will be times I miss the mark. Oh well. That will make me prouder for the times I hit the target.

My garage is cleaner than before and still needs some work. I'll work it in a weekend or two during October. My in laws are visiting at the beginning of the year for an extended stay and it is time to start making a space for them. The guest room has junk. First, the garage, though.

During September staying away from dark soft drinks was quite easy. I am a big Coca Cola fan and I am proud that I stayed away from it all month. Now I must decide if I want to reintroduce it. I'm not sure I need to because I do like water better now than I did at the start of the month. I also know that I can't say 'no' to Coke for ever, because deprivation and I don't mix well.

Now I want to focus on nutrition:

Eat meals prepared at home.
Eat protein and produce for breakfast.
Eat snacks that have fiber.
Finish organizing the garage.
Eat Fish.
Eat a salad for one meal.

For the first week, I'll see how often I do these things in one week. and the next week, I'll aim higher.

First week/Next week's goal.
Ate 10 home made meals this week. Week 2: 14 home made meals.
Had protein + produce 2x week. Week 2: 4x
Fiber snacks 5x week. Week 2: 5x
Garage is still undone. Week 2: spend 30 minutes on it.
Ate fish 1x week. Week 2: 2x
Ate salad 4x week. Week 2: 5x week.

  Member Comments About This Blog Post:


    Love your goals. Keep up the good work my friend. You're doing great!

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KATELJM 10/4/2014 6:30PM

    Perhaps your sweetness goal could be 90%. Face it, we all mess up once in a while, but it shouldn't kill the whole month's effort.

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REALTYLADYLISA 10/1/2014 12:08AM

    Now that seems like the best way to change your diet: track for a week and aim higher each week after...I like that!

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CHRISTINEBWD 9/30/2014 10:38PM


I think your goals are awesome! Also good to hear how you are doing! emoticon

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GEORGE815 9/30/2014 8:48PM

    Your focus looks like great behaviors to follow.

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The Art of Happiness

Thursday, September 25, 2014

"Everything that happens to me is the best possible thing that can happen to me."

--Chris Prentiss from "Zen and the Art of Happiness"

Somebody recommended this book to me. I appreciate the message that it does no good adding negative thoughts to every situation. The author suggests we should ask ourselves "What good will come of this?" when we get into situations that might seem negative, on first look.

The thing that confuses me about this way of looking at things is how do you move forward with the idea that what is happening to you is the best thing for you? How do you grow? How do you change when it would benefit you, if now is the best thing for you?

I've been thinking about this and I was going to discuss it with the person that suggested this book. I was to meet with her yesterday, but she hurt her back. I can't ask her. Should you happen on this blog, perhaps you have an idea and want to share.

  Member Comments About This Blog Post:

REALTYLADYLISA 9/26/2014 10:05AM

    "How do you change when it would benefit you, if now is the best thing for you? " This is an interesting question. I think that sometimes now is the BEST thing for us BECAUSE the circumstances of NOW are what makes us WANT to change...and THAT is the good thing in that particular moment. I've also come to believe, that even when it doesn't look like it, CHANGE is always GOOD! It is bringing us further on this path called life, and even when the circumstances seem less than good, what those circumstances do for us in changing our hearts, our souls, our motivations, etc. that change is working IN US for good!

Good questions!

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TORTISE110 9/26/2014 6:24AM

    I like the idea of trying to be more flexible of how I think of difficult things. I think accepting that life is hard is as important as seeing that what's difficult can also be incredibly interesting and engaging too. I think of raising a child, or caring for a sick person, as examples.

I don't know anyone who can rid themselves of negative thoughts, but I know we can add new perspectives if we want.

This is a small example and not very important, but I walked in the rain yesterday, looked a mess and had a great time because the rain was soft, I got in some exercise which made me feel better and took a shower afterwards which was lovely.

Comment edited on: 9/27/2014 7:25:45 AM

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CHRISTINEBWD 9/25/2014 10:44PM

    I think i need to read the book, but does he mean that what happened is a direct result of our actions? Or is this a Zen way of accepting our lives? Boy you have me, not sure...

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Sweet Sweep September

Thursday, August 28, 2014

My list of resolutions for August was long. Overall, I am pleased with how it went. Some things, like packing for tomorrow, cooking, and cleaning were a challenge. On the other hand, exercising and turning off the TV and doing fun things were easy. The big pleasant surprise was that turning off the TV and engaging in Ďjoyí talk made my husband very happy. I felt good too. It creates a loop of happiness. I want to explore this a bit more in September. Towards that end, I want to be sweet in September.

I will act like everyone I encounter is my neighbor. That means Iíll tolerate their quirks better. If their pace is slower than mine, Iíll assume there is a good reason for it: something hurts, they are being carefulÖ Also, Iíll squelch the urge to debate someoneís ideas, and I will not think about how Iím going to top their story. Instead Iíll just listen. Iíll nod my head and look to them for cues on how they want me to respond. Iíll be as enthusiastic or sympathetic as the circumstance calls for: Iíll be sweet!

The other thing I want to work on is sweeping away all the stuff that taunts me every time I visit my garage. There is stuff out of place in other parts of the house too and in the office and in the car. I will put some order in my stuff this month. I need to learn how to do this and this clean sweep might take longer than a month. This month, Iíll focus on the boxes in the garage.

There is one nutrition habit I want to work on too: drink less soda.

Here are the specific things to measure:
emoticon No dark colored soft drinks.

emoticon Sort the stuff in boxes in the garage for 45 minutes and spend 15 doing something fun, like reading, listening to music, dancingÖDo this cycle for three hours at a time during the weekend.

emoticon Spend 15 minutes before going to bed to clean up. (And pack for tomorrow.)

emoticon Spend 15 minutes a day reading books/blogs/ideas about organization.

emoticon When I have the urge to get annoyed with someone, give them the benefit of the doubt. Think about what might motivate them. Is there a noble intent behind the action? What would Mr. Fred Rogers do?

emoticon Listen attentively. Ask follow up questions.

emoticon When I feel like I know better what should be done, let the thought go and let it be.

emoticon When I am annoyed with a situation, Iíll think about an alternative way to look at it.

Here is some sample before and after thoughts:
emoticon Honey brings home five blocks of cheese: Iíll think, ďWhere are we going to put it and how much will go bad before we eat it.Ē Iíll say, ďGreat! Letís think of recipes we could make with this cheese.Ē

emoticon The garage door opener doesnít work. Iíll think, ďNothing works around here.Ē Iíll say, ďGreat! I get to get out of the car and walk a few extra steps today.Ē

the first week--I started with the garage well, then hit a snag. There are boxes that do not belong to me and honey is unsure about getting rid of them. Also, I found that some things I want to keep need a home. I have things I've written I want to keep, but they are loose papers or pages in a notebook. I need to find a place for them. I think I'll get a cardboard file box and put some manila folders to keep the things. Now, I also have some art work I need to figure out how to keep. I know there are holders for these things. I just need to purchase them. I plan to also put up some shelves in the garage, but there is still stuff to weed. The first weekend went well and the second weekend not so much because it was a busy week.

Being sweet is hard when I'm hungry or anxious about time. I was mindful about thinking about others as neighbors, but I didn't always act well. I don't like waiting and that brings out the zoom zoom instinct which has me tripping over others. I'm sure they don't like it. Then, I also need to figure out what to do about people that are not being very aware of others. When do I say something? When do I not? Finding the answer is tough.

Keeping away from dark soft drinks has 100% compliance. I'm glad it is easier than the other things.

End o the month review:
No dark colored soft drinks. emoticon
This was easy. Why? Because it was a very specific act. It was a Boolean decision. Either I did or did not. It feels good to accomplish this. I don't really 'crave' cola, so as I go forward, it should be easier to go to the drink as a habit.

The boxes in the garage hold mostly things that belong in the garage. We tossed things and donated things. There is still more to do, though. The content of the boxes kept, need a permanent home. The garage needs shelving to organize the things that belong there.

Oh man. I wasn't very good about the 15 minutes of cleanup and reading. I packed for tomorrow, most days. Getting things done in the evening is difficult. I need to avoid sitting down in front of the tv in the evening.

I have listen attentively. emoticon
I think I have. Mostly I've tried to understand what I'm being told. Sometimes people don't like all my questions, though. I have to figure out how to do this better. Anyway. At least I kept from jumping to conclusions and being defensive.

I kept my opinions to myself. emoticon
It feels good not to get worked out about the responsibility to 'correct' people. It lets them be happy about their choices. This is good.

I let annoyance get the better of me a couple of times.
My husband things that means Sweet September failed. I do not have that opinion, but I let him have his ideas. I told him I'm happy that I learned some things and also that there is more to work on.

In summary September was great! There are things I still need to work on.

It seems that most ideas point to mindfulness and mediation to get relaxed about the should and to find a way to enjoy what is.

  Member Comments About This Blog Post:

JKPONYGIRL 9/11/2014 6:35AM

    I love your blog. It hits so close to home. I have been working on these same things for a while now. It feels good to be sweet, but it is not easy. It feels good to clean and de clutter but takes so much time.

Great job on the no soda. I have not had ANY in years. I don't even like it anymore! I do like water and sparkling water though and I drink LOTS of it!

Keep up all tour hard work!


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CHRISTINEBWD 8/29/2014 10:59AM

    Wow, you really have thought out a lot of things you are going to work on. That is really great!! emoticon

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    Something tells me you are already pretty sweet!

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HOTPINKCAMARO49 8/28/2014 6:40PM

  emoticon emoticon emoticon emoticon

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GEORGE815 8/28/2014 6:18PM

    Great advice to follow!

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August 2014

Monday, August 04, 2014

This year is past the half way mark and I it feels like I am spinning my wheels and not getting anywhere. I hope Iíve learned something about what eating for hunger feels like. Now, I will focus on the Ďeasyí stuff: Action. These are my ten actions for August.

1) Turn off the media (TV, computer, cell phone) by 9pm Sunday-Thursday.
2) Lights out and sawing logs by 10pm Sunday-Friday.
3) Hit the fitness center by 6:30am on Monday(Swim/Walk), Wednesday(Swim/Walk), Thursday(Strength) and before 5pm on Sunday (Strength) Swim/Walk on Saturday AM. Skate on Tuesday AM and Friday AM.
4) Cook for the week on the weekend.
5) Smooches for honey when I arrive home. 5 minutes of meditation. Joy talk in the evening. M-F
6) Laundry, clean kitchen counters and kitchen sink 1x week.
7) Clear out one box per week from the garage.
8) Pack for tomorrow Sunday-Thursday.
9) 3-10 minute movement breaks M-F
10) Do something fun or novel each week(end)

Daily updates at my community journal:

Week one results: I need to work on packing for tomorrow, cleaning my kitchen, and my garage. #1 has helped me focus on honey in the evening and that makes him happy, which makes me happy.

Week two results: I want to get back on my schedule as soon as I can after it gets 'off track.' I had a late night last week and it screwed up my am workouts most of the week.
I want to pack my lunch and an evening sandwich so I am not so hungry when I get home. I want to do the household stuff that I know will help me feel better in the long run instead of watching Netflix... I can still 'visit' with honey. He can join in or recline, but I need to get my garage back. I think that is a big task and I'll have to focus on it next month. This month I'm going with the morning and evening things that make me and honey happy.

  Member Comments About This Blog Post:

JKPONYGIRL 8/7/2014 2:46PM

    I love your list! I think I'll borrow #5 & #7!! emoticon

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    Definitely a list worthy of your efforts! I think I'll borrow a couple of those goals and make them mine too!

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CHRISTINEBWD 8/5/2014 3:22PM

    Hi! Those sound like awesome goals! I love the "joy talk in the evening" really well and I find myself with that goal too. :)

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    Looks like some great goals. I hope that you will do well with them. I'm cheering for you my friend. Love ya

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    Those all sound like great streaks to uphold!

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2014 Mid-Way

Friday, July 11, 2014

It is time for the half year assessment. Letís look at how things are going:
1) Intuitive eating:
a. I am thicker and heavier than I was at the end of last year. The smaller pants I bought in December sit in the closet. I think this is mostly due to eating out and not cooking at home.
b. I am learning to eat for hunger. Slowly I am undoing the habits of the past. Iím taking small steps, but Iím stepping towards my goal. Iíve found myself tossing yucky food that seemed good when I selected it. That is huge! I would have eaten it in the past.

2) Fitness: I will do some fitness assessments and compare them with early in the year. Iíll update my measurements in SparkPeople.

3) There has been some fun fitness in 2014. Iíve gotten to the pool more often. Iíve gotten to a nice park nearby. Iím learning how to ice skate. I did a 5k. I got a group of coworkers together on many Fridayís of the year for a midafternoon workout.

4) I got a bit of a weird health issue. I had a bout of vertigo. I also see my mom and dadís ups and downs with age-related health issues. This makes me more aware of priorities. Also a niece was born! Seeing both ends of the spectrum on age has an impact.

For the rest of the year I will continue learning how to eat for hunger, learning how to have fun on the ice, and learning how to get stronger. I will continue my visits to the pool and I will continue examining my thoughts and feelings when I reach for the comfort of baked goods.

I spend a lot of time spinning my wheels fretting about getting started when a task looks overwhelming or there are too many responsibilities calling for my attention. Iíve been forcing myself to just do something. Having something done is better than having nothing done, if only for my psyche.

Iíve found that getting a nice physical activity in the morning makes me happier and that is why I like to do it in the morningóswim, walk, ice skateÖ.Then the onerous tasks donít seem as bad.

For July I will focus on something that has slipped a bit: cooking and packing my lunches! I also need to focus on strength training more

Update 7/22: I've taken body measurements and I some are 0.25" up. There are some that have down by the same amount. However, the locations are exactly the opposite of where I would like it. My midsection is bigger and my arm is thinner.

I've lost my way a bit with sleep. I am setting a strict bedtime of 10pm.

I have been cooking all month and I feel great about it.

I need to make a good effort to pack the night before. I haven't done enough of that.

  Member Comments About This Blog Post:


    It's always good to take a minute to regroup & check on your progress. Good job! Here's hoping much success to you for the 2nd half of the year.

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CHRISTINEBWD 7/12/2014 10:56AM

    I've never thought to look at my year, either half way though, or even at the end. I like this idea and will have to try it!

Eating home cooked meals and lunches have always worked for me too! Hopefully you will get back on track with that.

All the best!!!

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REALTYLADYLISA 7/11/2014 10:33PM

    It's always good to take an all-encompassing look at the plan and where we need to make changes to it...good luck with fine-tuning your plan and seeing more success the second half of the year!!! emoticon

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