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The camera stole my soul

Saturday, March 21, 2009

I feel that way, anyway. It's been 3 months since I had a comparison photo taken. And in those 3 months, I've lost 2 1/2 pounds -- most of that in the last few weeks. So why was I expecting to see a difference in the photos?

Here's the odd thing: these jeans were darn tight back when I bought the in December, and now they're extremely comfortable. You don't get that from just 2 1/2 pounds, but if I've really firmed up some (and I believe I have), shouldn't that be apparent in a photo? And yet it isn't.

Will I ever be happy with myself in photos again? I hope so. It's still a very motivating tool, especially when I look at myself last year. Today's photos, which I'm not sharing because they're really just not that different, just didn't make me feel that great about myself. I felt better before I took them!

So I shall just keep on keepin' on.

We have an invitation to friends' house tonight. I suggested to my husband that we should ask them out to eat because the husband is helping us put in a new door today, we owe them a dinner, and the husband is also highly allergic to cats, so we can't invite them here.

Instead, they ended up inviting us over to their house. For a couples night. With an Irish theme. Small wonder that they're having corned beef. I like corned beef, but frankly, that wasn't the something decadent I've been longing for. I really don't want to spend my calories on it -- I don't like it that much. Plus I still don't know what we're doing when we go to the rodeo (funnel cake, anyone? Did you know that typically has 750 calories in a serving?) But I also know my husband really likes corned beef.

Stay tuned . . .

  Member Comments About This Blog Post:

STARTSPARKING 3/22/2009 7:05AM

    Sometimes photos don't tell the whole truth, especially if you get a lousy photographer like me. emoticon I'd say your jeans getting much more comfortable would be a much better measure of progress.

I hope you had a great time with your friends although the food wasn't ideal. Usually corned beef is too salty and fatty, so that wouldn't be my choice of a meal to look forward to either. At any rate, I hope you are enjoying a pleasant weekend. emoticon

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MOMMA_GRIZZ 3/21/2009 5:14PM

    That's great about the jeans - from extremely tight to extremely comfortable - way to go! Don't worry about the pictures - your clothes are telling you the truth.

Have fun at dinner tonight. An Irish theme dinner and the rodeo - Sounds like fun! Perhaps wear your new jeans to remind you of the NI for a funnel cake - wow 750 is a lot for one serving!

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KEAKMAN 3/21/2009 3:08PM

    Yes, if the jeans fit better now, that means you have changed your body. Perhaps it's not weight lost but fat lost and muscle tone gained. That would account for the better fitting jeans. As for why the picture doesn't look any better....(warning! I am going to be blunt here, not trying to be rude, but help you be more realistic as you compare pics.....) Is everything in the "after" picture EXACTLY the same as the "before" pic? Same shirt? Same place in the hosue? Same light? Same hairstyle? Same time of day? Because we all know how those diet and weight loss places doctor before and after photos to dramatize the weight loss. Same can happen in reverse. If you don't duplicate the scene, it might "appear" that there is no difference. I would worry less about what the photos tell you than what your butt and stomach tell you when you zip up those jeans. If they say "ahhhhh" it's good. If they say "eeekkkk!"....

As for dinner, I vote for eating s lite dinner before you go over there so you aren't starving. Fix something you WANT to eat, then snack/nibble on dinner. And my rule is NEVER apologize or explain. If someone says "don't you like it?" or whatever, I just say "oh this tastes great, but I had a late lunch after my workout" or whatever. That way you are being polite and eating what is cooked, but you still get that special something you wanted. OR....you could make or bring a decadent dessert to share.

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Woohoo! I did it!

Friday, March 20, 2009

Weight loss 3 weeks in a row. I broke the pattern. Next week should really begin TOM, so I'm not holding my breath, but hope springs eternal, as they say. There were several days this week when I was just a bit hungrier than usual. I just tried to ignore it. It worked; it was a nice loss for me, and I'm finally almost 145.

I was just advising someone that we are not a number on a scale, but I have to admit -- it sure feels good to see certain numbers. I want to be healthy, I want more energy, I want clothes shopping to be easier, blah, blah, blah. It's just nice to get a little validation.

I do feel myself kind of longing for something decadent. I'm not sure what. I know my healthy habits will be seriously put to the test when we move (God knows what junk DH is putting into that house). There will be ample time to eat out then, I'm sure. I'm just kind of feeling the need for a cheat meal. But the other part of me says that I need to be really good now, so I don't have to worry so much when we moved.

OTOH, I never seem to do very well when I'm really trying to be "good" (like before we went to Alaska last year). I tend to push myself a bit too hard when there's a "deadline" involved, I think.

Now, if I hadn't lost weight this week, I'd intended the title to be "Woohoo! I didn't do it!". Not quite sure what I would have written about. Somehow I really did feel I would lose this week -- not that I'm ever really sure.

Don't really have a lot to say today. We aren't a number on a scale, but I must admit: I'm so much happier with myself in the mid-140s than I was at almost 170. I smile at myself more. I dress myself up more. I just take better care of myself in general.

  Member Comments About This Blog Post:

STARTSPARKING 3/22/2009 7:07AM

    Congratulations on your progress! I continue to admire your determination and diligence. emoticon emoticon

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MTER67 3/21/2009 6:08AM

    Three weeks in a row! This does call for a woo hoo! I am very happy for you. I know you must feel very rewarded for how hard you've focused these past few weeks. Congrats!

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MOMMA_GRIZZ 3/20/2009 7:42PM

    That's fantastic! You're right, we aren't a number on the scale, but somehow it is a lil bit easier to stand taller with head held high when it's closer to that magic 145. Good for you JLitt! Good for you!

Comment edited on: 3/20/2009 7:42:58 PM

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KEAKMAN 3/20/2009 3:19PM

    Great for you! Yeah, yeah, we all want to be healthier, but we also want to see a scale number with which we can live.

As for the need to eat something decadent, I say go for it. Plan what it is you will eat, and then plan around that for the day. Don't totally overdo it, but try to be sure to keep the rest of your fat to a mimimum and eat your veggies. Drink waer, and enjoy! Little treats like that help keep us from having total pig-outs!

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That's wonderful news!! Keep up the great work!


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It snuck up on me

Thursday, March 19, 2009

While the above could certainly apply to weight, it's our move date! Just a little over a month away, we now have a "firm" date -- of course, it was also firm a couple of days ago until DH realized he couldn't possibly finish the flooring in the amount of time that left him, so he moved it another week away.

I have been preparing for this move for literally years. We've been dancing around it for years. We kept hoping to avoid it altogether, but that was just not meant to be. I have been working on decluttering my home for what seems like forever (how does Peter Walsh do it in hours, even with a crew helping him?). I've even kicked it up into high gear, knowing that April was our target. Sometime in April.

Yet there is still so much to do. Decide on how to move the animals. Get the cats accustomed to a new, smaller carrier -- I've been working with them for months with one, but it's a little bit larger than most airline regulations. I'm not sure they'll go for one even smaller, like I said, it took them months to accept the one I already have.

Keep working down through the food in my pantry (getting a tiny bit sparse in there) and my extra freezer. Decide on a place to board the dogs in NY, or a pet sitter for the cats. Decide what to send back up with DH for this trip -- things I don't want to trust with the moving company, like my paintbrushes, my knitting needles, my jewelry.

And that's just the tip of the iceberg.

Weight is like that, too, though -- isn't it? It seems like you gain it all overnight, but we know that it comes on just a little bit at a time. Only we ignore our too small jeans, or we just buy the next size up. We don't take action, not until we're slapped in the face with our move date (or aha moment, take your pick).

Then we feel overwhelmed. It's easy to feel overwhelmed knowing you have to turn your entire life upside down.

And that's where those baby steps come in. Focus on the task at hand. Don't beat yourself up for not clearing off your desktop or not exercising -- just focus on what you CAN do right now, right this moment. Don't focus on step 5000 when you're just on step 1.

So yeah, I guess in my seeming never-ending weight loss analogies, weight loss is like moving. Or is that moving = weight loss?

  Member Comments About This Blog Post:

STARTSPARKING 3/22/2009 7:16AM

    When I was in college, I lived in the same quiet wing of the same dorm because I hated changes. I still do. The thought of moving scares me because I have SO much junk. I know the task is still not easy, but good for you for planning your move well in advance.

I often forget about baby steps... Thanks for the reminder. emoticon

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MOMMA_GRIZZ 3/19/2009 9:37PM

    Moving = weight loss. Physically - that's so true! And, decluttering is like weight loss for your house (and your mind)! We have been trying to declutter for years too, a little bit at a time. Perfect advice you have offered - Stay in the now and keep chipping away - way to go!

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MTER67 3/19/2009 5:45PM

    You and your analogies! Only one month to go! Eeeeek! I feel for you. I am going to be in that boat soon enough, but I still don't know exactly when it will happen.

I hurt my hip a little, so I have not run since Sunday. I have not done anything else to takes its place. The situation with my dad has sent me to the cupboard for mindless snacking, and my period is looming. I just feel "blah" and I am willing to bet that the scale is moving upward. Thanks for the reminder that when the jeans FIRST feel tight, it is time to do something about it. I need to get myself back on track!

Comment edited on: 3/19/2009 5:53:40 PM

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EOSTAR_45 3/19/2009 1:40PM

    Ahh the joys of moving (sigh). Moving is a full time job in itself. The best thing I like about moving is decluterring and getting to throw out stuff that we we are no longer using. Glad you have been doing that.

I forget now who said that "A journey of a thousand miles begins with one step." Most things are one step at a time. But I often forget that and want to skip ahead. I guess we all do that. You are right, just take it step by step. And amid all the hustle and bustle of packing, don't forget to take care of you too.



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VAL503 3/19/2009 1:10PM

    Loved your blog..
My heart goes out to you, getting ready to move, and worrying about what to do with your pets..
You have a great handle on taking it one step at a time, and thinking about what you can do right now to take a step.. I don't know if you read Eckhart Tolle, but those principles are throughout his work. I will keep you in my thoughts, and I hope everything goes smoothly for you.

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KEAKMAN 3/19/2009 8:19AM

    Great ideas - we have to attack weight loss, or moving, or whateer task one step at a time. It has to be done. You can't ignore it. You can't pretend it won't happen. So you start work. A little at a time. You prepare. You plan. You adjust. You make purchases. You stop making others. You set priorities. You tell family where they fit in. You get help. You do some things on your own. You make mistakes. You realize later that you made a mistake. You move on. You get it done.

Those analogies are all around us. I think it's called "Life". We live it every day. It just helps when we focus on what we're doing. Thanks for helping me get focused for the day today!

(I wish I could come help you with the move. I am a world champion mover-outer, packer-upper, and thrower-awyer. (we moved a lot growing up - 13 schools from K - 12 grade, and then I moved 16 times after that; the house I live in with my DH is where I have lived almost 12 years! and that is the winner by a zillion years!)

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I get no respect

Wednesday, March 18, 2009

Do you ever feel that way? I know I do.

I had hoped that a year apart would bring my husband new-found appreciation for all those little things I do: take care of the animals, shop, cook, clean, laundry (he does his clothes, but I do the rest) -- always be there whenever work needs to be done on the house or something needs to be delivered, even when I was working.

Yet my feeling, whether or not it's true, it's that he's angry because I am not there to handle setting up the dish, getting internet access installed, getting the refrigerator installed. He complained that yesterday he had to wait around for hours while they figured out how to install the satellite -- welcome to my world. Only add 4 animals you have to keep from escaping the house at the same time.

I know my husband loves me, I know he DOES respect me, but it seems as with all things, I need more. More reassurances that the little things I do -- the boring things -- the things I really don't want to do -- are appreciated.

I know that food isn't the answer; food is only part of the problem.

Where we're really butting heads right now is on how to move the animals. He wants to move them all at once -- which means driving, or flying with 2 animals in cargo, which I refuse to do. It's at the very least a 3 day drive. He actually does have a coworker who has offered to drive one of our cars up with us.

The cats are not good travelers. Lola isn't that great a traveler either. It's true, I did move my girls (my first 2 cats) from MD to VT via car, but it was just them, it was only a 2 day trip, and I was able to stop with my parents for my overnight stay -- I didn't have to worry about some chambermaid letting my cats out.

There are no ideal options here. Got a solution for me?

  Member Comments About This Blog Post:

JUDITH1654 3/19/2009 12:30AM

    Unfortunately, the ones closest to us take us for granted, not intentionally probably, but it still has the same effect. Maybe there is something else bothering him, though we all know most men have very little patience...unless it's watching a football game! LOL

I'm with you - I would rather drive than trust some air line baggage carrier to handle my pets, but that's just me. Maybe you could convince him to use it as a chance to see some of the country.

Just a thought. emoticon

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JLITT62 3/18/2009 9:38PM

    I have, actually, talked to both of the vets I use -- they BOTH advised flying with the cats. It's difficult, tho, because we can't fly with all of them at once, so it means 2 trips.

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MOMMA_GRIZZ 3/18/2009 9:16PM

    Sorry I have no solution for you, I've never moved with pets (out of the city anyway). If you flew with the pets, wouldn't it be less traumatizing for them because it will be a shorter timeframe? Maybe talk to your vet and see what they suggest?

As for DH, stress comes out in odd ways sometimes.....he probably does respect and appreciates you, but perhaps he is just projecting his anger and frustration in the wrong direction (at you).

Sorry all I can offer is a virtual hug.....hope you feel better soon.

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KEAKMAN 3/18/2009 9:11PM

    Isn't it amazing all that we do for our families (our guys) and how little appreciation we get? I swear, one "thanks honey" can get me through MONTHS of "slave labor" with a song on my lips. I finally told my DH that very thing. I don't mind all the crap work I do around here even though I, too, work out of the house as many hours as he does, I just need a little appreciation. He figured out that I was serious and so now he does tell me thank you every once in a while for the things I do (thanks for folding the laundry, thanks for putting away the dishes, thanks for making me coffee). It isn't daily, but it gets me through to the next time. You might try just telling him what you need.

As for the critters, I am clueless. Our only pets have been a chicken (she lived in the back yard, and we took her to my PILs when we were gone) and a stray cat that lived outdoors and ate whatever food we fed it. Until a coyote ate him. But I like the idea of talking to your vet for ideas/drugs/etc. Vets know these things.

Good luck!

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LAUSTIN68 3/18/2009 8:10AM

    Yes I do feel the way you do at times. The same exact way. I have a husband, three daughters, that do nothing around the house unless threatened, two hugh dogs, and 4 fish.
As for the move. Go to the vet and get tranquilizers for the pets. It will make the trip a lot less stressful on you and them. Good luck

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The best things aren't as good as a best life

Tuesday, March 17, 2009

I'm paraphrasing Oprah here. In the last half hour I've forgotten what the exact quote was, but you get the gist. This blog sort of goes hand in hand with yesterday's, but lately I seem to have trouble focusing so I ramble a bit. Hopefully it'll make sense.

As I go through my home, it's just amazing the crap you accumulate in 15 years. It's not just clothes. It's food, too. I've been discovering all sorts of things in my freezer -- like prime rib vacuum packed from 2006. Yes, I ate it, and yes, I'm fine (thank you, foodsaver).

I stockpile things like I stockpile weight, and I know it's all tied together. Where did this insatiable appetite come from? For books, for food, for clothes. I have given away bag after bag of both clothes and books this year (and still have at least 4 or 5 bookshelves full). I have at least 10 books waiting to be read, yet I can't wait 2 weeks to get to the used book store because I've got some coupons. Considering it takes me at the very least a week to get through most books these days -- sometimes a couple of weeks -- the ones I already have could last me at the very least a half a year.

I couldn't possibly use all my cookbooks in a lifetime. I do use quite a few of them, and often (I WILL get back to my food blog someday -- I've got stuff to write about -- recipes, cookbooks, etc.). But I can't seem to stop myself from buying more. I lust after cookbooks like I lust after a great cupcake. And let's not even get started on exercise DVDs. It's a cruel joke on me that Amazon is having a half price sale on exercise DVDs just at the time I really need to tighten my belt. Luckily for me, I have a couple of checks to deposit.

Unluckily for me, I'm missing one. I found one this morning, but there's another one somewhere and I'm not sure where. I looked in most of the usual places this morning, but I'm coming up empty handed.

I rail at my husband about all the crap he buys -- that's coming home to roost for him, btw, since he's having to move all that crap by himself -- I offered to come up & help, but that costs us pet sitters' money. He isn't the only clutter culprit, though.

I know where some of this came from. When we moved here 17 years ago, I didn't have a business. I only had 2 cats, and while they were much loved, for the most part they were taken for granted. I became the REALLY crazy animal lover I am today when those cats became elderly and ill. I am sad, too, to leave my girls (my first cats) here, even though I know that not only are their bodies gone by this point, their bodies weren't what made me love them in the first place. If you've ever been with your animal when they had to be put to sleep, you absolutely know that the shell we call a body isn't them; because when their spirt has left, that body is just an empty shell. Still, I will miss the comfort of knowing their graves & their rose bush are just a few short steps form my house.

I hadn't yet learned to paint, either. All of those things have greatly contributed to my clutter.

I began this journey over a year ago to lose weight and be healthy. This year, it's become more spiritual. I want to live my best life. I'm not quite sure what that is yet. I know it's one with some clutter, but not the level of clutter I have now. I want to be positive and live in the moment. I want my best life, and I try every day to live my best life. Part of that best life is to treat myself well and nourish myself, but that's only part.

  Member Comments About This Blog Post:

MOMMA_GRIZZ 3/17/2009 7:23PM

    Sounds like you are doing very well on your journey and you are at the next level. The move couldn't have come at a better time. Good for you - enjoy!

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STARTSPARKING 3/17/2009 1:06PM

    I saw that episode of Oprah about the lady who stockpiles food, and I swore those footage were from MY home! I think some of our obsession with hoarding is from our culture of excess. As bad as our economy is currently, many of us still have WAY too much "stuff". Another likely reason for my overflowing pantry (and refrigerator, and freezer...) may be my childhood in poverty. Food equals security and comfort back then, but now I must convince myself that such is no longer the case. Too much of anything is not good.

Good luck finding that missing check. Thank you for the reminder that living our best life may mean to simplify and to let go of our baggage.

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LLTS01 3/17/2009 8:39AM

    Wow- in some instances I felt like I was reading about myself. I hoard books and food too. I finally went through freezers and pantry to clear things out but I can see that I am starting to fill them up again. My husband jokes that we could feed the whole neighborhood during a crisis.

ANd I have several hundred books lined up to be read yet. I read voraciously but purchase books at a faster pace. I always wonder if there is a correlation between my excessive need for food and other excesses. I am trying ot be very conscious of it these days.

Gook luck on de-cluttering.

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MTER67 3/17/2009 8:15AM

    I must have been late to comment on your last blog because, I swear, you JUST posted a blog and now here's another! I think this move is becoming very cathartic for you. You are being forced to go through 17 years of clutter and memories and sort them all out. I can only imagine how bittersweet it is.

We are all on similar journeys. We are all looking to live "our best lives." I wonder if what that is will EVER be completely obvious to any of us. The joy is in the discovery, I suppose. Here's hoping that "cleaning house" allows you some of those discoveries--and that the rest will become clear once you have settled in your new home.

Take care. Good night!

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