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Happy Halloween!

Monday, November 01, 2010

We had 48 children come by tonight, more than we have had in about 3 years, maybe even put together. We gave out those glow bracelets along with the candy and they were a great hit with the children and their parents.

I ate 9 Tootsie Rolls. Six were small and 3 were tiny. That was plenty for me. I savored them, enjoyed them and am satisfied. Fortunately, we gave away almost every bit of candy that we had. BF will probably polish it off. There will be tons at work tomorrow. It will not tempt me.

As I write this, I am listening to the postgame show on the radio. The Giants won Game 4 of the World Series! They are one win away from the title, the title that the San Francisco Giants have never earned before. As I write this, I can hardly breathe! I am near tears of joy! Now I understand what Cub fans and Red Sox fans have felt. I had just about decided that this would not happen while I live here. Of course, it has not happened yet, but it is so close now!

I did not exercise yesterday or today. My knee is hugely swollen and has been so for almost a week, swelling more each day as I walked, so I semi-intentionally took the weekend off. Tomorrow is yoga. We will see how much I can do...

Thanks, everyone, for the Spark Goodies and comments. I will try to get caught up in the next few days....

Tomorrow is November 1. I am going to ramp up my cardio minutes, I have the fundraiser walk on the 20th and I am going to continue the consistency with water and food...What are your goals for the month?!

  
  Member Comments About This Blog Post:

CMRAND54 11/1/2010 9:22PM

    I'm sorry about your knee. I hope it's better soon. You'd better rest it while you watch the World Series.

I would be so thrilled if the Cubs got to the world series.

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LIBBYFITZ 11/1/2010 1:47PM

    emoticon

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CHAOTIC-KITTY 11/1/2010 11:20AM

  Wow 48 kids are a LOT! :) I hope your knee gets better soon. Hope you have a fantastic week!

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ANNE1123 11/1/2010 2:36AM

    Have a great week, and thanks for the update about the Giants Win!! WooHoo!!

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My Chili Was a Hit + One Tootsie Roll

Friday, October 29, 2010

Today was not a day when a lot of work was done. I was on the Halloween committee for the Legal Department and we were in a contest with the Marketing Department for the best floor design. There were also costume contests. I don't even like Halloween for a number of reasons that are not worthy of discussion here, but I had volunteered to be on the committee as part of my continuing quest to be involved, to be seen and to contribute.

Along with that, the department decided to have a potluck. I had given quite a bit of thought about what to bring. This time of year, it could be a warm day or a cold day, so it's hard to plan a menu ahead of time. I was constrained also by my own financial issues, the fact that there is next to no fridge space and only a microwave for heating. My solution was to do beans in the crockpot. Black and red beans soaked overnight while I watched the World Series the other night. Then the beans cooked on a very low heat for hours. This morning, I browned a package of 93% fat free ground turkey, diced tomatoes and added a can of diced green chili. Add to that some garlic and other spices. I lugged the crockpot to work and plugged it in near my office, set on low. It smelled fabulously, which had to have been tough on my coworkers. My office is in the Finance Department, another floor and another building away from Legal. I will have to do something kind for the Finance Department to keep the olive branch extended!

Most of the potluck participants brought snack items: chips, dip, cookies, cupcakes, brownies, one green salad drenched in some kind of dressing, potato salad that was really heavy in mayo, two pasta dishes and rice. One young woman made a chicken dish in some kind of sauce. My crockpot was empty at the end of the meal! Woohoo!

The marketing team decked their floor (right above Legal) as if it were an aquarium. It was very, very well done. They had posted invitations everywhere throughout all four buildings and 8 floors.

Legal did a rock star/Hollywood theme: red carpet walkway, a take on Graumanns Chinese Theatre (where the handprints and footprints are). Those who had offices on that floor had laid out sheets of butcher paper with hand prints on them. On the page, each person had a personalized statement. Some were very clever! Down the other walkway, they had decked the cube walls with tombstones whereon they had written names and dates of deceased musicians. There was a place to pose with a fake Elvis, a Hollywood sign backdrop for another shot, a conference room was converted to a kareoke studio.

The entire company (those who wandered through) voted for their favorite floor. At stake was doughnuts and coffee for the floor. (I don't need a doughnut!). For the last few years, Marketing has won. Last year, it was a tie. This year was the first year that the entertainment committee did not make the decision. I think they opened the vote up to everyone because of past controversies. Sigh...

Anyway, Legal won! Several people got door prizes in the costume contest, someone guessed the number of fake eyeballs in a vase. I did not win anything, but Yvonne did, so I was very happy for her!



This is Yvonne as a rock star. She attends lots of rock concerts and purple is her favorite color.





You can sure tell I am not practiced at facial art! The picture does not show it well, but, in my pin collection, I have a guitar-shaped pin that says "Giants". That is the orange spot on my shirt. I had forgotten I had that pin until I saw it this morning. I thought it tied in perfectly with the music theme at work and the orange and black of the currently-happening World Series. (Go, Giants: two more wins, please!)

All that candy, all those sweets - all I had was one Tootsie roll. I sure wanted the spinach dip, the chocolate, etc. Even now, there is a bag of chips (I brought some shaped chips for the chili, but it was not opened), but I did not give in when the chips called me. I looked at my tracker, saw that I needed just a smidge of carbs, some calcium, a little fat and protein and ate accordingly. I end the day within range in most things, low in calcium and just a hair low in protein. The calories are under the top, but not by much! A bit high in fat...

I was on my feet a lot today and I can sure feel it tonight. My feet are very sore. 8600 steps after 3 days of fewer than 6600.

Game 3 tomorrow afternoon! This is still surreal!

  
  Member Comments About This Blog Post:

CMRAND54 10/30/2010 7:28PM

    Your chili sounds so good. That was a great idea to use your crock pot. It's no wonder it disappeared by the end of the day. Good for you for skipping the candy and the fatty dips! You ate healthy. Your witch costume is cute and fun.

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MYSTERY4EVER 10/30/2010 9:32AM

    That sounds like a great day. Love the decorated offices. That is really creative. Your beans sound wonderful. I too always bring a main dish to potlucks because otherwise there is usually nothing healthy. Have a great weekend.

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LIBBYFITZ 10/30/2010 8:16AM

    Sounds like your pot luck was a hit! Well done on the total calorie count for the day, must have been hard. Hubby and I are on our first adventure in the car with driving here in Santiago. We drive on the other side in Aus.! We are heading off to another town and going to a seafood place for lunch. Have a great weekend! emoticon emoticon

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MISSY455 10/30/2010 12:09AM

    Chili sounds emoticon I am going to try that! Grats on staying on track today!!!

Go Giants!

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JHADZHIA 10/30/2010 12:01AM

    Very well done for your choice of meal (sounds heavenly!!) to bring to the potluck, and staying out of the unhealthy stuff!! I would say you earned your tootsie roll!!
I just love all that your work place did, so creative, and so much fun! Sorry you can't get into it :( I have no such luck with the places I have worked at.. For me, Halloween is my favorite time of the year! I love dressing up and seeing others, young and old alike, dressing up!! I also like to go around and see the house displays, some of which are pretty creative.
Here in my city, the University engineers would take an old house and make it haunted, complete with moving floors, etc., and raise funds for charity. Unfortunately, they have not done this for several years now :( Hoping some day someone will get their initiative back..
Since you have no interest in this celebration, it should be easy for you to stay away from the Halloween goodies this weekend. As I hate candy and chocolate that is not dark (has to be 85-90% cocoa), I am not tempted by the goodies my mom is doling out this weekend.
Hope you can have a quiet and peaceful weekend at home relaxing.
Enjoy your game! As I have other Spark buddies cheering on the other team, I remain neutral on wanting anyone in particular to win.. I like a good competition though..

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MTULLY 10/29/2010 11:15PM

    All in all, it sounds like you had a successful day. Good for you! emoticon

Go, Giants!!!!

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Nobody On and Two Outs (8th Inning Thoughts)

Thursday, October 28, 2010

Today was a better day. It was peppered with coworkers making comments about last night's Giants' win in Game 1 of the World Series! That was fun! Yesterday was a day of bouncing between fires or alligators or other analogies for urgent/hot tasks. I was busy all day but did not have much to show for it.

This morning, I walked in to find a couple of the alligators had grown overnight. My boss, bless his heart, sent an email to me, copying his boss and my supervising attorney telling me the priorities he wanted me to touch. That took some of the pressure off, not a lot, but it did help me focus. I made significant progress on the first alligator. There are some frustrating bits of data that I can't marry up and need to do so because this is a project in preparation for an A133 audit.

The second alligator, though smaller, is just as time-consuming. It involves an IP search in preparation for a release into public domain. I was given this task about a month ago and got only part of what I needed. It was back-burnered and forgotten about until another email surfaced yesterday. I still don't have the other pieces and the fact that this multi-sectored project is very late actually has very little to do with me. Someone forgot about the IP review until very late in the process. It usually occurs in the spring, so, while it was embarrassing that I had forgotten it, it was already late by the time it came to me. Still waiting for the other pieces...Such is my life!

I intended to go to yoga today, having turned down the chance to work with the new Toastmaster club at the VA. I had forgotten that a new leadership program was having its kick0ff meeting at the same time. As the program is getting extremely top drawer visibility, I chose to go to that. I had forgotten the kickoff included pizza.
Pizza is something I don't miss if I don't have it but have a hard time holding back if it's available. I had two pieces and easily could have eaten twice that. I had my lunch with me! (Yummy leftovers). The smell of the pizza coupled with the awkwardness that the host had purchased about 3 times as much pizza as there were people made me set aside my leftovers and chow down. I should know better. It did not taste as good as it smelled. I had the opportunity to take some home, but did not. I ate the leftovers for dinner.

But, as I was walking to my car this evening, I thought about the pizza. Instead of beating myself up about it, I am calling this "life" and "human". I will do better!

So what does the title have to do with today? When I started this blog, the Giants were in the midst of a big inning. After two men were out, they scored 7 runs, partly with good hits, but also with the generosity of the Rangers pitchers who donated four walks. That just shows life. I was down for those two pieces of pizza, but I am not out. I have the opportunity to start fresh tomorrow. I know, it's a weak analogy, but...it works tonight.

I need to think more about how that happened. Tomorrow is the Halloween party at work. I am on the Legal Department committee, so I will have to be out and about with all the costumes and candy and chaos. I need to plan my day carefully! It includes a potluck, and I am bringing a crockpot of chili.

  
  Member Comments About This Blog Post:

CMRAND54 10/29/2010 9:13PM

    I loved your analogy. Your team is really doing well, and so are you!

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LIBBYFITZ 10/29/2010 2:07PM

    emoticon

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CHAOTIC-KITTY 10/29/2010 12:47PM

  I loved your analogy. It is very true though. Tomorrow IS a new day. A day in which one can start all over again! :)

Wow... Chili. Love the stuff. You should share your recipe on here. ;)

emoticon Hope you are having fun with the Halloween Party at Work!

Comment edited on: 10/29/2010 12:47:26 PM

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JHADZHIA 10/29/2010 1:06AM

    sigh* I never even get the opportunity to have pizza, and I do miss it.. Good control actually. You could have kept on scarfing it down. I understand about things getting 'lost' I had forgotten I was supposed to have researched through ten years of meeting notes and get all the charities we have supported, then choose one each year and rotate through them. We were supposed to have had picked out new charity this month. OOPS!
I find Halloween the most fun time of the year, but have had no opportunities to dress up as my building dance was on Wednesday, the night of my rookie master bridge game at the club. This year my Curves is not having a prize for best dressed costume :(( I can actually stay away from the candy (I don't like it), the chips would be hard if there were some. But the only chocolate I like is 90% cocoa and they never give that away LOL.
I wish you all the best with it! be strong! You have it in you!

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Tony Bennett, Giants Baseball, Toastmasters and Work (WHEW!)

Wednesday, October 27, 2010

As I write this, Tony Bennett is singing "God Bless America" during the 7th inning stretch at Game 1 of the World Series (AT&T Park, home of the San Francisco Giants). How surreal! His voice is still smooth! The Giants always play his "I Left My Heart in San Francisco" when they win at home. What a geat way to exit the park! But I digress. The Giants are leading!

Today was my day to deliver CC #2 (Organize your speech). The goal of the speech is to present a speech that has an opening, body and conclusion. The speech was about my experience taping the tv show Toastmaster meeting. I wrote it on Friday and practiced it about 3 times - not my usual work. I was supposed to deliver this speech on November 17 and was asked late last week to fill a spot in today's agenda. I wrestled with the opening and changed it several times.
I left out a lot of information and I had time to have included it. (The speech has to be between 5-7 minutes) I forgot to look at my speech today, did not bring it with me, so I was really winging it. I was not proud of this speech.

This is my 3rd time through the CC manual. I did it many years ago while in Alaska. Back then, it was called something else and took 15 speeches to complete. I was the youngest member of my club and completed them in the shortest time that club had seen. I started working through the new manual a few years ago and dropped out of the club, disgusted with the lack of care the club demonstrated. I rejoined and decided to start over because I felt so rusty!

We are having a grab bag meeting on Nov 15. This means no one knows what their role will be until we get there. So I need to work up another speech!

The district president asked me to be an evaluator for a new club they are trying to launch at the local VA hospital. The problem is that their meeting conflicts with my yoga class! I turned her down for tomorrow and thought that would be that. She emailed me back and asked me to do the same thing on the 18th. That's the Thursday before Thanksgiving so I could not say no. I hate to say no to the vets. I always wanted to serve, but cannot pass the physcial. I tried every branch of the service 5 times and was unanimously rejected. I have always said that, when I can get my life together, I would like to volunteer at the VA. This is a way to contribute and support.

So how can I balance my need for exercise (yoga at work is really cheap) and growing as a Toastmaster, expanding my heart by giving...I am already struggling with the yoga and Toastmasters at work because I don't get my steps in on those days.

I have not eaten dinner yet, but I think I will end the day within range...!

Work has been just crazy busy! I felt as if I were spinning my wheels today. I touched a lot of things but did not get to finish anything. One step forward, hold while I wait for information, start on something else and another thing crops up urgently. I feel absolutely overwhelmed and hopeless! ACK!

  
  Member Comments About This Blog Post:

MYSTERY4EVER 10/28/2010 10:54PM

    There is an old saying that if you want something done, ask the busiest person. I think the world has you pegged. It is important to take care of yourself however. It is the bottom of the 8th and the Giants are still ahead. So enjoy the game. Hopefully tomorrow will be a calmer day for you.

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CMRAND54 10/28/2010 9:27PM

    I'm watching the ball game again tonight and SF is ahead again.

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LIBBYFITZ 10/28/2010 1:43PM

    Hope you have a better day at work tomorrow! Sounds very busy! emoticon

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JHADZHIA 10/28/2010 1:57AM

    Wow! Another thing we have in common! I tried to join the military as soon as I was old enough, at age 16, while my RA was in remission, and I felt good. But alas, I failed the physical. The reason? The RA had damaged my wrists so they could not bend the required number of degrees!!! This was a uniform requirement, so there was no trying elsewhere. I even went to a plastic surgeon to see if he could do something with my wrists. He said no it would be a mess and I would not like the result. As he was the top surgeon around, I took his word for it.
That is unfortunate the Toastmasters is conflicting with your yoga :(( You will just have to decide what is more important to you :((
Unfortunately, you have chosen for yourself a very busy frantic career.. I hope you can see a way to organize and get the most important things done first (but naturally, they would all be vital I am guessing). Good luck with it..


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NANCYRUBIO 10/28/2010 12:49AM

    Sounds like you are balancing too many plates at one time. Stick with Tony and sleep peacefully tonight. Giants won~~

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JAKEANDNELLIE 10/28/2010 12:22AM

    I wouldn't worry about your steps on those days - you're getting the physical activity with the yoga and you're getting enjoyment from the Toastmasters. Both are important to maintain a balance in your life.
I hope things settle down somewhat for you at work. It sounds extremely stressful.
Stay positive!
Sheila

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ACIMPEGGY 10/27/2010 11:02PM

    Baby, I've had those speeches before...it has ALWAYS been when I pick a topic, research it (use facts, figures, statistics, definitions and stuff) and memorize...(or almost). It seems to fall flat to me.

Now...when I speak from the heart about subjects dear to me (ACIM, love, forgiveness, friendship, etc.) the speeches always turn out wonderfully and go over well with my audience, not to mention pretty good evals...

Steps? I have over 10,000 today...9300 at work alone.

Practicing speeches while walking is a fav of mine.

I love your work at the VA! I'd like to do that, too... emoticon emoticon

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Soup is a Wonder Food!

Tuesday, October 26, 2010

When I woke up this morning, I did not want to get out of bed, but I felt ok, so I eventually dragged myself up and out the door for work. I had not felt great yesterday afternoon but I thought it was just the soreness from the yoga. A few years ago, I fell down two flights of concrete stairs (no broken bones!) and have had problems with my neck ever since. I had to undergo physical therapy afterwards and learned some great exercises that have helped. Before the fall, I could not sleep on my back because, in that position, I would feel nauseated. That nausea hit me this morning after threatening yesterday.

I took the afternoon off (vacation time as I have no sick time left), came home and slept and slept.
BF fixed a great soup for dinner and I am feeling much better.

Yesterday, I was over in calories. Tonight, I end the day under in almost all metrics and I am ok with that. Tomorrow will be a much better!

I have to give a speech tomorrow and I have not practiced enough. I hate "winging" it. Perhaps inspiration will come. The intro is weak. The content is ok and the conclusion ties in nicely with the title of the speech. The speech is about my experience taping the toastmaster show.

  
  Member Comments About This Blog Post:

ULEWIJ 10/28/2010 2:50AM

    haha, I read the title to your blog and thought about my GI who told me to have a cup of soup before every meal to feel satisfied and fill up

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JAKEANDNELLIE 10/27/2010 10:30PM

    I hope the speech goes well.
I also hope you're feeling much better soon.
Sheila

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CMRAND54 10/27/2010 9:37PM

    Good luck with your speech tomorrow. You are so brave to do that. I hate public speaking, although I will talk your ear off in private.

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LIBBYFITZ 10/27/2010 1:00PM

    emoticonThe speech will be fine. You have compassion for it as at least you are worried about it .Hope you are feeling better! emoticon

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JHADZHIA 10/27/2010 2:01AM

    Glad you are feeling better, was it chicken soup? LOL.
As you are speaking about an event that really moved you, you should do well, as you will be speaking from the heart with sincerity about your experience..
emoticon

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EMPTYNESTER60 10/26/2010 11:49PM

    Glad the soup helped and you are feeling better. Glad your BF fixed it for you. Good luck on your speech tomorrow. Be sure to post tomorrow night & let us know how it goes. emoticon

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TURTLERAE55 10/26/2010 11:27PM

    Yes, soup is a wonder food. Just keep and eye out on the sodium amount.

Keep up the good work.

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