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Just Like Before We Can Walk By the Shore

Sunday, July 27, 2008

Yesterday was very full and it's no wonder that I am exhausted. The day began with me sitting downstairs in front of the TV, reading the newspaper and eating breakfast (the TV was off). I hear a slightly skritching noise, turn to it and see something grey and furry which then runs back to the kitchen.

Of course I'm terrified (because I'm thinking rat, and I'm sitting barefoot and just in my nightclothes). I scream a few times for my husband who finally comes running out of the shower wearing nothing but a towel. I yell, "There's a squirrel in the house!" Huh?

He goes to investigate while I cower upstairs (I eventually realize I'd better put clothes on because if the animal is rabid, we'd better call Animal Control pronto. It was, indeed, a squirrel. He did what he could to calm the poor thing, including tossing nuts in its direction (it climbed up the dining room curtains and then jumped from the top -- about 9' high -- to the floor and was fine). He finally got the back door open (it was mostly hanging by the door, so that was hard to get to) and then convinced it to leave by employing the use of the (now-patented :D) Squirrel Persuader 9000.

The Squirrel Persuader 9000 is also a push broom.

Anyway this was the first funky thing. We were going to a Beach Party at Plum Island so there was then over an hour of driving ahead of me after that.

We brought focaccia (my recipe is on Spark), cut up mixed vegs and roasted red pepper hummus, plus things like napkins and paper plates. This was a party held by a woman I used to work with, two jobs ago. We all had a blast -- lots of music (we bring the music and I act as the DJ -- it was a mix of 60s, 70s, 80s and 90s stuff although I didn't play the song that is on today's blog entry), food (and I didn't overdo it!) and beach time.

And I really didn't overdo it with the eating because there was plenty to interest me that didn't involve eating. I played frisbee for the first time in over a decade (Mr. Jespah was in heaven -- not only did I play with him but so did one of the kids, one of the other former coworkers and a husband of another -- the latter is actually quite good). Now my right forearm is bothering me on and off but my plant foot (which was also lower than the rest of me because I was on a little rise)'s ankle (the right one) is hurting. But that's okay; it's a good hurt.

One thing that was worrying me was the big hill from the beach back to the house. It's really not THAT big a hill, but it's big enough, plus there's little to no traction because it's all sand. But I managed to get up the big hill -- twice -- with no ill effects but did feel it in my calves and had some heavier breathing. But I did it without assistance! This is a major miracle as I've gone to this beach house for four years now and this is the first time I have EVER done the hill on my own without wanting to curl up and nap for three hours afterwards. Hence the daily calf raises are really working and that's great motivation to continue them -- they really, really do work, and I've got an incentive -- to be able to do it all again next year, with even less heavy breathing afterwards.

I've very proud of that.

We also played petanque, which is a French (Basque?) sport somewhat like bocce. I still stink at it -- I can hurl the ball (which is heavy; it's made of stainless steel) just fine, but my aim continues to be, heh, less than optimal. Our team won anyway, 5-2.

Now I'm tired, with the aforementioned little aches. Plus my throat is sore. But I'm extremely happy (I need to send out the thank-you note ASAP). I haven't gone downstairs yet this morning.

I need to check for squirrels.

  Member Comments About This Blog Post:

JESPAH 7/28/2008 3:10PM

    Thanks; I will gladly play Pi Phi Petanque with you. :)

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TUESDAYS 7/28/2008 1:05PM

    OMGosh... I've been face-to-face with those fuzzy buggers too! In the midst of the addition to our former home, the workmen hadn't closed things up thoroughly and one got in. I was working in my office, only to turn around and YEOW! It took us 3 days to catch him with a live trap! Yuck.

CONGRATS on your great day at the beach --- sounds like a blast! It's wonderful to hear you being so active and just ENJOYING everything so much. It matches your personality. I'm really happy that you're taking back your life in this way. Keep UP the good work, Sistah!

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JESPAH 7/27/2008 5:55PM

    Ha, you're the first person outside this group of friends who I've ever known who played. We're busy thinking of nicknames for each other, like Eagle Eye and The Odessan Fireball. :)

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TELERIE 7/27/2008 4:50PM

    It sounds like a splendid day! And I love petanque, and have a lousy aim as well. Should play it more often - my game might improve.
Good to get to the point that you can feel that exercise works, isn't it!
- Marit

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JESPAH 7/27/2008 1:27PM

    Thanks; it was just a terrific day overall. The squirrel, I'm sure, is dreaming of nuts or perhaps having nightmares about the weird big greenish cave with the crazy humans in it who use brooms in manners not intended ....

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WOODLANDMYST 7/27/2008 10:26AM

  Sounds like a wonderful day, all in all. Had a squirrel in my house before - fast little buggers! Enjoy your Sunday ~ Cyndy

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KARBIE18 7/27/2008 8:58AM

    Sounds like you had a good day, regardless of the squirrel. Great job on the wise eating choices and getting up that monster hill. Keep up the good work!


Comment edited on: 7/27/2008 8:57:08 AM

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She Wouldn't Dare

Sunday, July 20, 2008

I thought of this song recently because I put on a shirt on Friday and it used to be, well, a shirt and it came down to my waist and all of that but now it comes down past my butt and is practically a dress. I also thought of it because there was a recent tribute to The Who on TV and I was unable to stay up too late to watch too much of it but did see The Foo Fighters and they were amazing. My husband is a really big Who fan so the DVD will, I am sure, end up as his Chanukah present. Or maybe we'll get it before then.

It's time for milestones. Yesterday was the 19th and that was 6 months since I started alli.

Weight Loss

In the period, I have lost 67 lbs. and am 1/3 of the way to my ultimate goal. Things are slowing down and it takes longer between goals now, so I do not honestly expect the next 67 to go in 6 months, but hope springs eternal. This week, actually, I suspect I will have a plateau. Only 1 1/2 lbs. until my 4th alli goal.


Bicep 15" record smallest - down 4" from the start
Bust 49.75" - down 5" from the start
Band 42" - 5.5" from the start
Waist 44" - down 5" from the start
Belly 50.25" record smallest - down 9" from the start!!!
Hips 47" record smallest - down 4" from the start
Rear 53.25" - 8.75" from the start!!!
Thigh 28.25" - down 4" from the start

Overall inch loss is 5.94".

I'm starting to move away from a pear shape and more into what Spark calls an avocado shape, which is actually what I am when I am thin. When I was in High School, my measurements were 34-29-36. While I don't expect those measurements again I do expect those kinds of proportions. I always had a bit of a belly but of course when you're thin there isn't a lot because there isn't a lot of you anywhere.


I don't know if I have any 28s left in the house. There might be one or two from Winter that I have yet to toss but that should be it. I have plenty of 26s because I need clothes to wear, but they're all too big for me. I fit into 24s for pants easily and without constriction. I fit into 22s for tops without problems, and this includes blazers which have to lay over the hip. I suspect that I will start fitting into 20s for tops pretty soon.

When I replace clothes, I do so one size below what I currently am, toss the old huge item and wait to fit into the smaller one. Since I order clothes online (I've always hated department stores, even when I was skinny), it takes a while for them to get here and sometimes that means that I fit into them or am close to doing so when they arrive.

There are a few things that I won't be replacing for a while, mainly because I don't want to invest serious money in intermediate sizes. These are, of course, coats and jackets. I tried on my Winter jacket (I remember when it was too small and I had, tearfully, bought a size 28 which I hatefully referred to as The Teal Monstrosity) and it's a tent on me. Still, I can't see investing in a size 24 because I'll be out of them soon or down to a 20 or an 18 because I'll need for any jacket to actually fit me once it gets really cold. I might check out Goodwill but I know they're hit or miss. One thing that has come from this is more of an interest in looking good in clothes.


I do 3 sets of 15 reps every day, with 10-lb. weights. I've invested in adjustable 20-lb. weights for my wrists so I can eventually use them together with the free weights, for 30 lbs. (or even with the small set of wristlets, for a total of 35 lbs.) but that's a ways from now. I'm getting close to ready to up the weight level but am a little hesitant because of the hot weather.

I get in 30 minutes of cardio every day because that's how I get to and from work. I don't take cabs on Fridays like I used to, although extremely bad weather might change my mind a bit in that area.


I drink way more than I have to, every day, because it's been hot. I have some issues with a lot of trips to the ladies' room, but that's not bad as it's fairly far from my cube, hence I get in more steps that way.

Food and Nutrition

I stay within fat and calorie ranges but have had some recent issues with too much salt. I also continue to have issues with getting enough iron and calcium. If I am low with any nutrients in any given day (and that doesn't happen every day, but it does tend to happen at least once per week), it's with those two. I know they are important and I do what I can to get them into me.

I drink milk and have a yogurt every single day, and together those give me about 80% of the calcium I need. Then the trick is the remainder because cheese is a salt issue unto itself. For iron, since I'm a semi-vegetarian, I don't eat meat every day. I do eat chicken and fish and am fine on days when I eat either. Beans are a decent source, too, and every other week is a bean soup week so I get a lot in then. For the off weeks, we have pasta primavera. Maybe I'll start adding spinach to it.


My nephew's Bar Mitzvah is in late September and I have already made the 60 lbs. off goal I had originally set for then. My current goal for then is now 75 lbs. off. Since I am only 8 lbs. from that, I expect to make it handily and then will probably extend the ticker another 5 or 10 lbs. (it depends on how close to September that happens) and see if I can make it to as many as 85-90 lbs. off by the big day.

I also need to buy a dress and have it narrowed down to black or predominantly black, with some sort of sleeve and somewhere between knee-length and calf-length. Plus it should be something I can wear to work; I want to wear it at least one more time before it's too big for me. Hence future blog entries are probably going to be partly devoted to the quest. I have some ideas and have some options tagged at Amazon, Chadwick's, Jessica London and other online retailers. Of course the size is a mystery now, too, but I've decided that it'll be whatever size I am on September 1st and if it's too big by the time of the big day, I'll live.

Onward to thinness.

  Member Comments About This Blog Post:

TUESDAYS 7/27/2008 8:18AM

    Hey Jes...
I'm reading old blogs this morning (not to be confused with blogs from old people) and came across yours because you're a Pi Phi pal. YOU ROCK! I'm soooo happy for you and your progress. Your "voice" says done. Your actions say done. Your whole lifestyle says done. Continue to live it out....and I'll see you at the other end of the scale. I'm cheering!

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SISNAMIL 7/21/2008 10:45AM

    I want to be Jess when I grow up.

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JESPAH 7/20/2008 5:23PM

    Thank you -- I'm getting all blushy! :)

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FABGRAMMA 7/20/2008 4:47PM

    Way to go, reading your story and progress is a real inspiration. emoticon emoticon

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WOODLANDMYST 7/20/2008 3:52PM

  The last line says it all ~ kudos to you for your progress thus far and many blessings as you continue towards your goal. Cyndy

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LILLIAN364 7/20/2008 2:10PM

    Congratulations on your progress.

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JUSTKARON 7/20/2008 12:44PM

    I'm REALLY impressed with your attitude and your PROGRESS! You're burnin' up that ticker kiddo! emoticon


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AMHISPRINCESS 7/20/2008 11:56AM

    You are doing great. I am proud of you... I know that you can lose all the rest.. I know that this is a change in life style..and not a diet.. it is so much better knowing that we have to change our lives in order to become healthy. We are doing this for us. That is important.

Have a wonderful day.. keep Sparking... and being DONE... Hugs, Carol emoticon

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I'll Show You My Dark Secret

Wednesday, July 16, 2008

Not much to report and I don't have a dark secret -- that's just my shameless ploy to get you to read today's entry.*

The song is because I gave blood today (yeah, it's about vampires. My apologies to the wonderful nurses who took care of me today).

Otherwise, I'm starting to settle into a bit of a routine. And this job has two fabulous fitness perks. One I already knew, that I get in a half an hour of walking every day, without fail, simply to get to and from the office. The other is that I've been drinking more than 8 glasses of water per day. It's usually more like 9 or even 10, sometimes another when I get home (I don't lift until I get home).

As for the actual work, I am beginning to find things I can do, or I learn them and they work. I was getting frustrated before but I think I've turned a bit of a corner and now it's starting to push into a better groove.

*Well it worked, didn't it? ;)

Hopefully I'll have more substantial things to report about the next time I blog.

  Member Comments About This Blog Post:

JESPAH 7/18/2008 5:20AM

    Ah, yes, it's the amazing power of finally doing something not wholly unfamiliar. I hope I get a few more of those moments every day -- they definitely help.

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JUSTME2C 7/18/2008 12:42AM

    Keep groovin' and losin'! emoticon

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TUESDAYS 7/17/2008 11:33PM

    What a trickster! Shameless indeed... but then I knew that about you...
Congrats on that "corner turnin' stuff!" We lovvvvvvvvvvve when that happens here at SP, don't we??!

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TELERIE 7/17/2008 6:27AM

    The shameless ploy worked, keep'em coming! You're doing great, and seem so happy with the new job, it's all good!
- Marit

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JESPAH 7/17/2008 5:32AM

    I never thought it was a vamp song either -- can't recall where that was pointed out to me.

Thank you both for commenting.

{thinks of other shameless ploys .... ;)}

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LOBRENNAN 7/16/2008 10:07PM

    Dude. I never thought of that song as having to do with vampires. But it makes sense now! It all makes sense!!!

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SWINGCAT 7/16/2008 8:01PM

    Oh noes I was got by your shameless ploy!!! Haha. Great work today and good for you donating blood! Remember keep turning those corners in STYLE, with a done girls dance!

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You Know

Tuesday, July 15, 2008

I'm going with this song because the other day I heard one of my coworkers speaking fluent Hebrew and it included the word "Shema" (I understand maybe 30 - 50 Hebrew words, many of them numbers) which I know means "hear" or "listen". So he may have been saying, in Hebrew, "Can you hear me now?"

He was pretty helpful today, though, as I was again struggling with the SQL beast. I'm having a bit of a frustrating time of it but that is typical for me in new job situations. I want to be comfortable immediately, and I'm not, and there's also sorts of acclimating that has to be done, and it's not happening fast enough for my tastes. I get antsy and then start doubting things. I suppose a bit of it is buyer's remorse.

It's probably also fatigue. I am trying to do all of this without resorting to caffeine, and so far that's not working out as well as I'd like. I'd just tired. A lot. I'm getting enough sleep in terms of numbers but clearly I need more. But there's no time, so I get what I can and do everything else to be healthy and hope for the best. I'll be able to make up a bit of the sleep debt over the weekend but after a while it's past time and you can't do anything about it, anyway.

And it's not even like it's much of a sleep debt. I actually get seven to nine hours per night but my body is telling me to go for ten. Well, I'm not going to give up eating or showering or a fast morning commute, or going online. It's looking a lot like I should just crawl into bed right after dinner every night but, heh, I like to have occasional conversations with my husband.

I'm funny that way.

In the meantime, while I attempt to wring another hour or two out of the day, enjoy the lovely Ofra Haza. This is the only Hebrew pop song I know of (she apparently has others on Youtube). Poor Ofra had a beautiful voice and a tragic life. Look her up some time if you're curious.

  Member Comments About This Blog Post:

JESPAH 7/16/2008 6:10AM

    Yeah, it's really sad. She had such a beautiful, haunting voice. I found, of all things online, a Paula Abdul song with Ofra being sampled.

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LOBRENNAN 7/15/2008 8:37PM

    I've got the Sisters of Mercy song Temple of Love with Ofra singing in it. Now I'm going to look up what happened to her.

How sad :I

Comment edited on: 7/15/2008 8:46:44 PM

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That's Okay With Me

Monday, July 14, 2008

Beware: this video will keep playing and playing if you don't stop it. Consider yourself duly warned.

Well, I'm working. And I actually have some stuff getting assigned to me already so, heh, ready or not, here I come.

I'm starting to (slowly) get used to the routine. I'm still somewhat tired but today I got home and had some energy, which is more than I can say for much of last week. Also, on Saturday we ran a bunch of errands so I'm glad that that's all done and no errands need be run this weekend, except for standard food shopping.

Gonna go grab some grub. Enjoy this obscure ditty by a group called the Members.

Oh and one more thing -- I'm a third of the way to my final goal.

  Member Comments About This Blog Post:

EMMASMART 7/15/2008 12:08PM

    I'm next. I'm so glad you are settling in. I have to clean the house so when I go back to work I don't have that On my mind.


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JESPAH 7/15/2008 5:55AM

    Bingo -- I'm all for stress reducterizing. :)

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RATSAMONGUS 7/14/2008 10:27PM

    Glad the new job is going well and you are getting into a routine. A little less stress and more time to enjoy. :)

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JESPAH 7/14/2008 7:34PM

    Thanks, Marit. :)

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JESPAH 7/14/2008 7:33PM

    Thank you, lovely Miss Tracy. A job with your name on it is coming. :)

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TELERIE 7/14/2008 7:33PM

    Woohoo on closing in on a goal! That's a great feeling! And a new job is ALWAYS exhausting. Glad you're easing into the routine, though. And glad you'll be able to devote the weekend to something more fun than errands! Do something good!
- Marit

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TCEDEROTH 7/14/2008 7:31PM

    It's great to be working again, isn't it? Hopefully it won't take me long to find something. The last of the surgeries is coming up soon, and then I'll be hitting the search head on. I'm very anxious.

I've been watching your ticker move, keeping an eye on your progress, and if I haven't posted it elsewhere lately, I want to say you're doing fantastic. Congratulations. Your dedication and focus are an inspiration.

And your blogs are refreshing.

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