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New jeans = happiness & other ramblings

Friday, May 22, 2009

I tried on some of the jeans I bought before I left Austin. They were too small then, but I knew where to get discounted Levis then & was confident I'd fit into them eventually, so went ahead and got several pairs.

Most of them now fit -- most comfortably. One or two are still too tight, but I have no doubt eventually I'll be wearing them, too.

Even tho the main reason I want to lose weight is to be healthy & have more energy, I can't lie; smaller jeans make me feel good. I have gone from a relaxed size 16P to 6P -- which is the equivalent of a size 8 (nowadays; I'm sure it would be more like a 10 or 12 a decade a go, but that's ok).

Of course, getting back to the balance I was blogging about yesterday, we are still having car troubles. Sort of.

I'd been having trouble with my check engine light coming on & going off. Turns out you can get a code read with a machine from Autozone or Advanced Auto Parts -- for free. I did that in Austin, and I had a bad 02 sensor. When I called our dealer, they wanted about $400 to fix it. We decided to wait.

It eventually went off on its own, but came back on shortly before our move. I had the code read again (same problem) and erased, but it came back on even quicker this time.

I went to Advanced Auto Parts here, where they actually give you the machine & have you do it yourself. I am good with technology, but horrible mechanically. I couldn't for the life of me find where you plug it in -- even tho they said it would be obvious -- and had to ask for help. Eventually got it done & erased the code myself & went right over to Firestone to get my car inspected -- you only have 10 days after registering it.

I sat there for an hour & a half, finally asked about my car, and it must have been done for a while I'm guessing, but no one bothered to tell me. It failed the inspection.

So last night we took it to the dealer. This morning they called & said they can't find anything wrong with it -- inspection-wise, but had a whole laundry list of other things that needed to fixed (adding up to quite a bit of money, and some of it I know should be done). We asked them to just do the inspection, and I'm waiting yet again. If it passes this time, a $21 inspection will end up costing us over $80 and a lot of my time. But hey, it's only money, right?

I have no pithy analogies to draw this time. Excpet maybe to pay attention and fix things when they first start to rear their ugly head, rather than procrastinating -- it's always more expensive to fix (money-wise or weight-wise or whatever) when you procrastinate.

We did go out to dinner last night. We still have a few gift cards to various chain restaurants, so it didn't cost us anything extra. We went to Red Lobster, and I had the lobster pizza & a caesar salad with grilled shrimp. Yum! Took home half of everything for another meal. I was only going to have half a biscuit, but ended up finishing the one. And taking home the rest for tonight's dinner (which oddly enough will be a shrimp salad -- just the way it goes).

While we were eating, DH commented that the weather the last few days is why we're here. That people here endure the winter to get to the lovely spring weather (much like we endure the summers in Austin to get to the lovely winter/spring weather). And it has been glorious the last few days.

  Member Comments About This Blog Post:

MTER67 5/23/2009 7:41PM

    Yay! Size 6P jeans--that's awesome! The scale may be important, but there is no more telling gauge of success than a great fitting pair of jeans. Congrats on making yours look good!

Sorry you have had to deal with car issues so much of late. There is nothing worse than having to sit in a waiting room (of any kind) for hours. I always feel my blood boil the longer I am there--and then to have to spend money after all the waiting just adds to the horror of it. Glad it's all done for you.

One time my husband was trying to make a statement about something and he said (by accident) "Money is no expense." We laughed and the statement has become a saying in our family--usually when I want to spend a lot of money on something and am trying to justify the purchase: "Money is no expense, dear, remember?"

In other words, I don't think I would be bothered so much by having to spend the extra money, just more relieved that the process was over and you can check off another box! Now you can enjoy the beautiful weather knowing that the car has been taken care of!

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KARBIE18 5/23/2009 11:14AM

    6P!! That's terrific! But I can't think of anybody who deserves it more. Great job getting into those smaller jeans!

Car problems are a pain! That's good that they didn't find anything major - I think. It's weird when you have "symptoms" and they can't be explained. Glad you passed your inspection, though - I'm thinking it's probably a good thing we don't have them here.

We're having gorgeous weather here, as well. I invited a friend from work over last night, and we dug up some plants for her to take home. It was a beautiful evening. DH is gone for the weekend, so today I'm just hanging out in my yard with Sunnie, reading a really good book. Just thought I'd take a few minutes to check in with some of my Spark friends!

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TANYA210 5/22/2009 11:28AM

    Congrats on getting into a smaller size. Way to go.


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DDHEART 5/22/2009 11:14AM

    Ah, I love seeing the plus sides to people's health journeys! The best feeling in the world when you slip something on that you know you couldn't have worn before (at least not in public!LOL) And I also liked the way you made the analogy between the car issue and our health journeys etc. As a person who has procrastinated more times than I care to admit and then paid the price...a lesson to take to heart.

At least you have the great fitting jeans to help balance out the stresses of the move, unpacking, car troubles. Enjoy this great result of all your efforts!

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KEAKMAN 5/22/2009 11:00AM

    HOORAY! for the skinny jeans! I can not even imagine fitting into a 6P. I am sure you are dancing around in them today. emoticon

Car stuff is annoying. Makes me wish I could do everything via bicycle (except Oregon is considering requiring bikes to be licensed and inspected like cars! are you kidding me?!) I hope it's all over and done with for today.

And your analogy is spot on - I kept thinking of my leg while reading about your car....if only I had taken care of it as soon as the check engine light came on.....(you know what I mean!)

Enjoy your beautiful weather. We are to have sunshine and warmth all weekend, too - not typical for Oregon so everyone is very happy!

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MOMMA_GRIZZ 5/22/2009 10:59AM

    Kudos to you about your jeans. Feels awesome, eh? I agree, it's one of the side benefits of this healthy journey we are on. I love it!

Sounds like you had a great evening - I have been to Red Lobster once and it is fantastic - a real treat for a prairie person like me to have lobster (it's expensive out here).

Have a wonderful day.

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Life is about balance

Thursday, May 21, 2009

I truly believe that. Without the bad times, we can't enjoy the good times. When we get out of balance, for whatever reason, life isn't as sweet. Too much exercise and we run the risk of injuries and actually lowering our immune systems. Too much food -- well, we all know what that gets us.

One tip I liked from one of my recent books was to balance your snacks. And I'm not talking about protein, carbs, and fats (altho I do think it's a good idea to have snacks that have both carbs & protein). No, the author's point was to balance sweet with savory.

For instance, this morning I had a chocolate banana peanut butter "pizza" for breakfast. I'd gotten away from these -- preferring to start my mornings with less sweet options -- but they're fast & easy & mostly nutritious, so for now, it's working for me.

So my snack this morning was dry roasted edamame.

For the same reason I like to eat most of my sweets -- the cookies, for instance -- with my meal. I don't get a sugar rush when I have my sweet with my meal -- a nice balanced meal helps me to digest those sweets slower without crashes and craving yet more sweets.

Another way moving is like losing weight: you just have to have patience and faith that in time your baby steps will pay off. I'm still living in way more clutter than I'd like -- ironic, considering one of my goals for this move is to get rid of clutter -- but there are few boxes left in the main living areas of our home.

Our spare bedrooms are still pretty stacked. And almost every vertical surface is still covered with stuff I'm still trying to find homes for. But 3 weeks later, and you can actually move around without getting whacked by a box.

Of course, there are still all the boxes in the garage to go through. Then we'll probably have to reorganize everything in the house. And THEN we'll have to organize the donation/garage sale stuff.

But with baby steps, patience, and faith, it will get done. The same for my weight loss. My goal is getting tantalizingly close. I think I've hit another plateau, tho, going up and down the same few pounds over the last few weeks -- which is good, actually, considering what's been going on in my life. I'm really pleased that I didn't gain a lot of weight with this move (so far, anyway). I was worried. I didn't take into account what all that stress would do to me!

Don't expect your journey to a healthy life to be smooth. There will be roadbumps and roadkill -- some you'll expect, others you won't. Take the good with the bad and just keep plugging away at it. You'll be pleased by the results, I promise you.

  Member Comments About This Blog Post:

EOSTAR_45 5/21/2009 4:38PM

    So true. I agree with KEAKMAN, "everything is moderation." Even too much of things good for us end up being bad for us. Its tricky finding balance or knowing if you are in balance. I find it hard moderating things I love like reading, solitude, gardening, walking not to mention favorite snacks!

Way to go on unpacking. One box at a time and you will get it done.

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KEAKMAN 5/21/2009 3:04PM

    Again, great blog! (I thought you were talking right to me, especially at the start.) Balance is hard to achieve. "Everthing in moderation" is how I was taught - but some days I stray waaaay into one side or the other!

Glad you are making headway with the unpacking. And glad you recognize the positive side of your plateau.....once ife settles into a routine you will straighten that out, no doubt!

(and what is the recipe for your chocolate peanut butter banana "pizza"? sounds wonderful!)

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MOMMA_GRIZZ 5/21/2009 11:50AM

    Sounds you are making progress - yeah! You have done awfully well during this move - kudos to you JLitt62. Every day, every choice, is a step in the right direction on this journey.

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TANYA210 5/21/2009 11:33AM

    I love your positive attitude. Keep staying positve and you will meet all goals.


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Take my husband, please!

Wednesday, May 20, 2009

I swear I'm ready to trade him in for a new model at the moment. Everything is about me, me, me. Something he often accuses me of, but he's damn good at it too.

Our plan for dinner yesterday was to cash in our coupons for the free KFC dinner. Only I discovered that the KFC that's really close to our home is closed, and because I'd just finished my grocery shopping, I didn't really have time to find another.

So my husband tried to go last night. And of course, after 2 weeks, they're still handing out rain checks. Which the manager told him had to be postmarked by yesterday -- which was clearly impossible by that point.

And when he called me to ask me what to do, I was outside with the dogs & didn't hear his call. Never crossed his mind that I take them out beore he gets home so that hopefully he doesn't have to the minute he gets home -- no, all he knows is he wanted to reach me & couldn't.

Of course we have things going on right now that aren't a whole lot of fun. We're both tired. We'd both like to have an uncluttered house. Didn't much help that his sister called last night, and told him his Dad (who has Alzheimers) is getting worse. What can you do about that when you live clear across the country?

He told me he'll be happy when the house is together. Before that it was when we would be together again (hello, that's happened, where's the joy?). He rails at me because I force him to come walk the dogs with me on the weekend -- time he could be using to unpack -- but I'm tired of having to always walk them on my own. I've spent more than a year on my own, and I'd like some company. I even shorten the walk for him -- half an hour will not make that big a difference in his life, but you'd think I'd just asked him to clean the house & cook all the meals & scoop the litterboxes.

So my roundabout point is that life starts today. Not tomorrow, not next week. And we can choose whether or not we're happy about that.

  Member Comments About This Blog Post:

KUNGFOOD 5/20/2009 6:20PM

    emoticon emoticon emoticon
Nothing better than a good vent to clear the air sometimes. Sorry if I sounded all know-it-all-y... eesh!


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EOSTAR_45 5/20/2009 2:42PM

    Hang in there. Venting helps.


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JLITT62 5/20/2009 2:07PM

    Thanks so much for the comments, everyone!

Just wanted to let y'all know I'm not about ready to divorce him . . . yet. But I really needed to vent about it.

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DDHEART 5/20/2009 9:52AM

    The title of this blog drew me like a moth to a flame....had to see what this was all about, then after reading it I had to look at your page and pictures and other blogs. You have what I would call a very full plate...........of stress!

Take a breath, this too shall pass......like a kidney stone perhaps with a great deal of pain..........vent when you need too, and get some exercise when you can, I can see that it serves as a great stress reliever for you. I suspect your husband is suffering from a full plate as well but he hasn't found the same stress relief as you with walking the dogs.......perhaps in time. Right now take care of yourself.

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MOMMA_GRIZZ 5/20/2009 9:14AM

    Sorry to hear your frustration. This is a big change for both of you. You are probably so use to living apart and now you are together - it's gotta be stressful. I hope things calm down soon. Take a deep breath, smile, give him a hug and tell each other that it is going to be ok - you'll get through this together.


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KEAKMAN 5/20/2009 8:49AM

    emoticon emoticon emoticon

(I have nothing else to offer. Just a hug and a hope that things settle down soon. )

Comment edited on: 5/20/2009 8:50:50 AM

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KUNGFOOD 5/20/2009 8:32AM

    Sometimes you have to fake it til you make it. I usually wind up asking myself ..."what is wrong at.this.very.moment..." usually it is something that I can deal with if I'm not trying to look at the bigger picture.

Being away from home myself I find myself missing those little tasks, and my pet cat Mr. Bink. I'd be happy to scoop the litter box only because I'd know he'd had something to eat! Haha

For now, relax. Enjoy the good things, even if they are pesky-tasky. If your husband is like so many of us, when he sees you enjoying yourself, it'll naturally attract him to want to become involved.

Stress is a weird thing, but when you own it, it dissolves.

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KARBIE18 5/20/2009 8:07AM

    Sorry you're dealing with this. What you wrote reminded me something Tolle mentioned in A New Earth. He said that many people have that problem - they think they'll be happy when this happens, or that happens - they are always looking ahead to some point in the future. He says those people might as well start a list that says (and I'm paraphrasing): these are the reasons I can't be happy right now. I agree that being happy is a choice. I just don't think some people are as willing to think about it that way. It can definitely be frustrating, especially when it's a significant other.

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MTER67 5/20/2009 7:57AM

    Oh gosh, I am so very sorry! I have admitted to friends that I am worried about when my husband retires from the military...we have never lived together 24/7. What if we do and discover that we can't get along?

Sharing a walk with you and the pups is NOT a big slice of your husband's day and would be a great opportunity for some "together time." However, maybe it is too soon to ask for that. Maybe what you both need is a little time to breathe and "defrag" away from one another and all the boxes.

I can't think of many things more stressful than packing up house and moving to a new place. Add to that that you and your husband are ALSO trying to get used to living together again. It is not possible for either one of you to relax amid all the chaos you are living in right now, so you will just have to ride it out. My only advice is that you acknowledge you are driving each other crazy and just hang on. Things are bound to get better, as soon as the house is in order and you begin to feel at home in your new house. Hugs!

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It feels good to exercise

Monday, May 18, 2009

Many thoughts went through my head today. But today, for the first time since I moved (roughly 2 1/2 weeks ago), I did one of my exercise DVDs. Could you hear my sigh of relief where you live?

It feels good; really good. I chose a fairly new one, which isn't all that hard: just what I need to ease back into a little weight training: 10 Minute Solutions Tone up with dance -- somethng like that, anyway.

I haven't even tried all the segments on it yet, but it uses a stretchy band for the toninig; perfect when you haven't had any weight training for weeks other than moving heavy boxes around. I did do a SP video with resistance bands last week, too.

I'm usually dragging around this time of day, but that little ole exercise DVD sure did perk me up. Granted, I'd like to get back on the couch, but I might just tackle a box or setting up my computer (finally found all its components).

In another victory: finally found the key to my treadmill. If I can clean it off, I might just hop on it tomorrow. We'll see how much energy I have left after the food shopping (which reminds me I've still got to make up a list).

On the not so good side, or good side, I suppose, I finally won my battle with the DMV. I have our tags, finally. It only took 3 trips between the 2 of us, and numerous calls to our insurance agent. I won't bore you with the details, but suffice it to say I was just about ready to shoot someone today. I don't really mind that they make it so convoluted, but I really do get angry when they keep failing to tell us something that results in our not being able to get our tags and eats up more of my time.

I got in a lot of steps today wasting my time walking around the "mall" the DMV is in. Which is a good thing, because even tho this weekend wasn't sedentary -- in fact, did a little bit of honest-to-God hiking at a local park -- I didn't meet my 10,000 steps either day.

I haven't made the best food choices over the last week. Not terrible, they just could be better, and the truth is I really just can't get away with a lot. It's always such a struggle for me.

Today wasn't any better. All that walking around and stress, and I wanted something. I finally got what was essentially a salad in a wrap -- and a brownie. I'll share the brownie with my husband tonight. I know that the wrap may or may not have been healthy -- a local place, so no nutritional info -- and I know sometimes those sorts of things can just be a landmine. But I was in no mood to go back & make myself something.

Normally I have no problems eating a brownie either, not when I make it a conscious decision and savor it. It's just that there's been a little bit too much indulgence lately -- little things, but they sure add up.

I will make sure to enjoy every bite tonight, and maybe leave just a tiny bit on the plate. And then I'll move on with my life. I feel better now that I have access to my exercise DVDs again, even if I barely have room to move still. I'll make it work!

  Member Comments About This Blog Post:

KEAKMAN 5/19/2009 9:25PM

    I hope you were able to uncover your treadmill and get in a little walk or run either yesterday or today. Starting over is miserable in some ways, but such a joy in others - I hope it is all joy for you! Congrats on getting the DVDs going, and for your resolution to share that brownie and get your food under better control. You have had a lot of junk to deal with the past couple of months....I hope life is really becoming more normal and sane so that you are able to return to what works best for you.

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MTER67 5/19/2009 7:41PM

    Thank goodness you put the DMV behind you. That place exists, I am convinced, to employ the most miserable people on the planet. And, by forcing the rest of us to go there and deal with those people, they make the rest of us miserable, too!

Sorry that you don't believe you have have been eating very well. It sounds like, even though that aspect of your plan may not be going as well as you hoped, you are making progress in other areas: ie., getting the treadmill ready to go and doing some exercise DVDs (and hiking, too--how did you enjoy that? I bet it's hilly where you are?)

Hope everything else continues to fall into place for you!

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MOMMA_GRIZZ 5/18/2009 5:06PM

    Good for you. Things are starting to come together - what a relief, eh? That's nice to hear. Have a great evening.

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TRECECOOKS 5/18/2009 3:31PM

    Too funny about your last email to me, the one with your phone number. I found it when I got home - after we met!
So sorry DMV continued to be a nightmare. You could have called - I was home all morning.
Hooray for the key, the DVDs, and the computer components!! It's going to come together, honest!
On my excursion Friday night, I found The Crossings you mentioned (or at least one end of it). Looks promising, but a good ways from me.
Hope the brownie is tasty. Have a good evening.

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Another way weight loss is like moving

Thursday, May 14, 2009

I just want it done; I want the house to be clean and neat and free of clutter. Doesn't matter that it's taken me about 25 years to accumulate this stuff, I just want to spin my house and have everything go into its respective home. Too bad you can't do that.

There are days, too, when I just want to be done with thinking about food. I "should" be at my goal weight already, but I'm still a good 10 pounds away from it. Doesn't matter that it's taken me 47 years to get to this point, I just want to be thin for life without any effort. Too bad it doesn't work that way.

Of course, I don't always feel this way. If I did, I'd have given up already, on myself and my house. I refuse to give up. I know I am so much healthier than I was at this time last year. I know that I've laid in some really good habits that have gotten me through the actual stress of moving. If I'd been as heavy and tired as I was a year ago, this would have been that much harder.

Still, I'd really rather not have heard that I gained back the weight that I lost last week. Not terribly surprised -- I don't feel I had a bad week, but I did have a hungry week. And that's ok; I know I will continue downward at some point.

It's also ironic that I began tracking my food again this week. That's life for you sometimes.

I also know that I really need to start getting that weight training in. It's hard at this point in time -- I'm doing plenty of walking most days, but then I'm stuck in one place unpacking boxes. And by the end of the day I'm so tired I don't want to do anything more, but I know I have to make time -- and space -- for some weight training. Probably just resistance bands right now, but that's better than nothing.

I really, really, really need my DVD player. Maybe I can sweetalk DH into setting up the one downstairs, because that's the one without the sound system and is easier. Not that there's much space downstairs, but I'll make do. Unfortunately he's got a night meeting tonight and won't be home til late, so it'll have to wait til at least tomorrow.

On the good news side, I found my Vitmuffins & vitabrownies right in a local grocery store! I was down to my last vitabrownie. No store that I knew of in Austin carried them, so I always had to order them off the Internet. It might actually be cheaper that way, but still, I was pleased to see them right there (although I've already shopped that store a couple of times & didn't see it before).

On the more good news front, the grocery stores are really close to home. And the 2 different chains are right across the street from each other, so it's really easy to shop at both of them, since different chains carry different things. I didn't even use the GPS today to get to my meeting or home (that's how easy it is to get there).

  Member Comments About This Blog Post:

MTER67 5/15/2009 7:39PM

    It will take a long time to get everything just the way you want it in your house; just as it takes a long time to get everything the way you want with your body. But taking your time and doing it right will lead to greater satisfaction and success down the road.

Glad the stores are close to home--sounds like you are getting to know your way around!

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KEAKMAN 5/14/2009 10:02PM

    Ain't that the way.....you start behaving and the scale tells you that you aren't! You sound like you have it all under control, know what probably caused the temporary increase, and how to fix it. You and your life are still in flux, so continue to cut yourself slack. Once everything is sorted out and put away, then it's time to get back to your routine. (and sooner rather than later for those of us who NEED routine!)

Hooray for getting to know your way around - soon you will feel all settled in and know just where to go for what you need!

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TRECECOOKS 5/14/2009 6:11PM

    Sounds like you are getting acclimated!! Soon we'll be able to get together, pet cats together and have a coffee!!

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