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Aspire and Inspire (Spark Team)

Monday, November 29, 2010

Thanks, JakeandNellie, for inviting me to this team. I love the name and the idea!

I was a complete couch potato for most of the weekend. Tendonitis, cold (limited heat) and general lethargy. I had to get back on track today and did so with over 8K steps. I still need to do more, but it felt good to move. I am HUNGRY tonight but am capped on nutritional metrics.

I am basking in the remembered glow of a really great day. A coworker saw my post on FB about considering law school and, as he passed me in the parking lot this morning, stopped, rolled down his window and said I should go for it! :) All it takes is money...which I don't have. I am so tired of scraping by, but I cannot complain. I am blessed. The second thing that made today great was accomplishing a lot of work today. I love that "I earned my pay today" feeling! It is unreasonably cold in the Bay Area (apologies to those of you who deal with REAL weather and that brings up my 3rd great thing for today: heated seats turned on for the drive home!

The season of food has begun. Tomorrow is pizza for lunch, countertops groaning with goodies that people bring from home. Today's offering was chocolate covered pistachios. I have no idea how they taste because the box was empty by the time I saw it. Even if it were not, I was resolved to pass it by. Still, I was glad to see the box was empty! Friday is the department Christmas lunch and I need to plan for it.

Next week is the biggest event: the annual holiday brunch buffet in the morning and the patent celebration with more food in the afternoon. BUT it is on December 7th. The date which lives in infamy will never be a day of celebration for me. It is a date for solemn and thankful memory. I always take the day off, so I will definitely not be anywhere near the pancakes, the chocolate fountain, the sausage or anything else.

More I could say, but the mental energy is waning fast. I saw a note that a member of the Spark community lost her husband last week. I don't know her, but she has been on my heart and in my prayers all day.

  Member Comments About This Blog Post:

CARRAND 11/30/2010 9:50PM

    Congratulations on a great day at work. Law school is an interesting idea. Maybe you could get student loans?

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LIBBYFITZ 11/30/2010 1:29PM

    emoticonWell done. Sounds like a food filled work area!

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CHAOTIC-KITTY 11/30/2010 1:11PM

  Glad you had a good day ... The season of food IS here... unfortunately. Hope we can all survive it! ;-) I am sure you will make good choices as to what to eat in the next month.

Best of luck always. :-)

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MYSTERY4EVER 11/30/2010 9:37AM

    Glad you had a great day at work. Take care of that tendonitis.

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JHADZHIA 11/30/2010 12:53AM

    Congratulations on having a great work day!!!
Wow! Do the people you work for ever know how to feast!! I hope your tendonitis settles down so you can get going again. I find cold very motivating to move as you can really work out in it and not worry about heat exhaustion (and it keeps you warm).
I wish there was some way you could go to law school. You deserve it. Any bursaries available, or would your firm support you in some way,, things like that?
I wish they would make heated seats sold in my province mandatory LOL.
Its sad when you hear the things people suffer through here on Sparks. People come together with wonderful support on here. That is why I have no plans to leave it, even though I am at goal weight.
Hope you have a good day tomorrow!

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SURENDERISNOTME 11/29/2010 11:29PM

    Welcome to Aspire & Inspire! Let me know if there is anything I can do to help.


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Three Bites, Spark Goodies and Couch Potato

Thursday, November 25, 2010

I felt very lethargic today. My Achilles tendon is screaming at me and I have absolutely no energy. So I did not do the walk I intended to do (or anything else for that matter).

I decided I was going to send all of my Sparkfriends a goodie today, but I did not finish doing that today either. As I did send them, I read everyone's pages and was inspired and reminded about all of the reasons why this community is so fabulous. We all have our struggles, motivations and goals. We might not be in complete agreement about how, but we all have compassion for each other and can encourage each other. None of us is truly alone.

A couple of people had posted a comment on their pages over the last few days about taking 3 bites of a favorite food at a Thanksgiving feast. We did not have the traditional Thanksgiving today (bummer), but we did have a dessert that was a gift. I had the 3 bites and that really was enough.

I am still trying which charities to support this season in lieu of gift shopping. The older I get, the less I enjoy the whole gift giving thing. I used to love shopping for someone, finding just the right gift. But it also means wrapping (not a skill I possess) and mailing and....it just gets to be too much.

Second Harvest (food)
Toys for Tots
Humane Society
Salvation Army

So much need. I wish I had enough money to make a difference...

  Member Comments About This Blog Post:

CHAOTIC-KITTY 11/29/2010 8:10AM

  That is a fantastic idea to give to charities... they need anything that anyone could really donate. So, you are a total blessing to them! No matter how much you can afford to give them.

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IXCHEL23 11/28/2010 12:23PM

    How sweet of you to give to charities! I know what you mean about the gift shopping, I'm doing gift cards with adult family members. Have the toys listed out for the kids from their parents so it's easier.

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CARRAND 11/26/2010 9:29PM

    What a nice idea. You are a sweet heart!

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BYEFATNANNY 11/26/2010 6:38PM

    Nice thought. I always give to Blue Star Moms (military families)in my husbands name, it is his favorite gift. Thanks for the Thanksgiving goodie.

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    emoticon We all need to think of others, there are so many without jobs now.

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LIBBYFITZ 11/26/2010 7:19AM

    As long as we all contribute it all adds up to a lot!

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PANIK257 11/26/2010 12:09AM

    Most of those wrapping booths at the mall donate the money you give them to charities! Kill two birds with one stone. :)

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JHADZHIA 11/25/2010 11:52PM

    This is a fabulous idea! I always found shopping for gifts and wrapping them tedious. I would much prefer giving to a charity. The charities I like to give to are Crisis Nursery, Food Bank, Children's Wish Foundation, Telemiracle, SPCA, hospital charities (I have used them so much, I should be giving some back)
That is for sure there is so much need, and this is just all for local people in my community.

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My Cup Runneth Over

Wednesday, November 24, 2010

What a year this has been! I have been thinking about my holiday newsletter and know that it will contain good news and bad news as I reflect on this year. Tonight, however, is for the positives, the reasons why I am grateful. In no particular order:
My job
My health
Family (a new baby in the extended family this year and one on the way for next year!)
Friends - the older I get, the more precious they are
My cats who love me unconditionally
My education
All the opportunities before me
Finding SparkPeople and having spent 10 months on the site
My Spark Community
My sister's divorce (she is happier now)
All the losses of this year which make all the joys all the more sweet
My brother is home from Afghanistan
All the wonder of the US - those who serve (thank you! I cannot)
The freedoms we enjoy (I continue to marvel at the wisdom of our Founding Fathers)
All those who've gone before me - I stand on the shoulders of their greatness.
Without them, I could not vote, I could not work and I would not be educated
The journey of evolving me, of which SP is a huge part!
My home such as it is
The fact that my cupboards are not empty
The generosity of friends and coworkers who donated to St Judes for my walk

  Member Comments About This Blog Post:

TERRI143 11/29/2010 10:05AM

    I am so glad that things are working out for you. You are an inspiration to many of us, I know you are to me. God bless you.

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CATLADY52 11/25/2010 3:34PM

    We should all be motivated to have a list like yours. My list is different but still the same. emoticon

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TEENY_BIKINI 11/25/2010 1:48PM

    Hey gorgeous. That's one great list :)


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LIBBYFITZ 11/25/2010 1:35PM

    emoticonYou have had a very tough year, but you have come through it and am so proud of you and all you have accomplished! emoticon

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VICD25 11/25/2010 9:14AM

    Beautiful! Thank you for sharing your joys!
emoticon emoticon

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CARRAND 11/25/2010 9:13AM

    I am thankful for friends like you who are a joy and an inspiration.

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JHADZHIA 11/25/2010 6:51AM

    Wonderful list! I am glad things are working out so well for your relatives! I am so very happy to have met you here at Sparks!
Enjoy your holiday!!

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Today Was Terrific!

Wednesday, November 24, 2010

I had a very interesting day today. The work was a little bit of everything and I had no chance to be bored!

Lunch was a meal at an Indian buffet - impossible to judge the food. I ate veggies and a little bit of protein, skipping as much of the heavy sauces as I could. I don't know all the ingredients, of course, so eating is such an adventure. I am sure I am over for the day, but I am not going to beat myself up about it. Lunch was with two attorneys I used to work with regularly doing export control clearance, but now that I am in government contracts, that is no longer possible. One is from Germany, the other from Taiwan, so the cultural juxtaposition is fun!

I had the call with our outside counsel on the request for production. I told him that I am a new paralegal (my VP had told him I am a paralegal, but she had not told him I am newly minted!). He listened to the research I've done and sounded impressed on a couple of points. I had gone farther than he thought I would have. Of course, that was counterbalanced by a few avenues I had not yet pursued. I am so grateful that my top attorney trusts my judgment and abilities and is letting me deal with the outside counsel directly. I asked her how much she wanted to be involved and she wants an update about every 3 days.

I got in over 7200 steps today and was back in my routine of stretching and doing simple exercises in the elevator.

The day ended with my usual difficulties trying to get online at home. I called my provider and ended up having to uninstall and reinstall and remove the firewall.

As you can see, I am online. My internet connection has not run smoothly for a very long time. Woohoo!

  Member Comments About This Blog Post:

TEENY_BIKINI 11/24/2010 9:54PM

    Indian food is a tough one to gauge indeed.

I hope you have fab holiday.


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CARRAND 11/24/2010 8:38PM

    I hope you have a wonderful Thanksgiving Day!

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JHADZHIA 11/24/2010 11:30AM

    I love Indian food. Not much opportunity for it as I don't eat out much though :(. So glad your job is humming along and you are doing well with it..
Way to go getting steps in when you are so busy.
If your internet is that bad, maybe its time to look for a new one? I am sure there is a bargain out there somewhere as they are very competitive.
Hope it stays this time.
Enjoy your evening!

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MYSTERY4EVER 11/24/2010 8:51AM

    Indian food is tricky - a lot of ghee. I try to go for the Tandoori meats and veggies. The biggest thing is just not to eat a lot. The food is very filling; i just takes time for my stomach to realize how much it has eaten.

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LIBBYFITZ 11/24/2010 8:28AM

    emoticonWith the walking. Your job is sounding like you are strting to enjoy it. Especially when allowed to get on with it!

I love Indian food! emoticonSounds like the company was interesting.

Have a great Thanksgiving!

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KARENA-G 11/24/2010 6:19AM

    Your job sounds awesome. I've never eaten much Indian food, outside of a few frozen dinners. But I love chai tea.

Glad your internet is working--truly essential stuff!

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Taking Care of Me & the Doctor's Scale

Monday, November 22, 2010

This morning, I woke up in excruciating pain that only lessoned after lots of water. I called the doc and asked for an appointment, hoping I could get one close to the time for my mammogram (routine). Long story short, I did. They did not find anything wrong - I thought it was a urinary tract infection. The mammogram was the easiest I have ever had - I think it's because there was some less tissue to examine!

I am relatively new to this insurance plan and there's no way they know me well enough to know that, if I followed through on something odd on the same day, it's a big deal. I usually wait for things to go away...

The doctor scale said, with clothes and shoes, I weigh 172. That is about 6 pounds less than the last time I weighed there. I don't put a lot of credence in it because it was a different scale. I go by my own scale. But it is nice to see the numbers go down.

While dressing after the mammogram, I looked at the full length mirror. Sure, there is a lot to lose, but...I liked what I saw! That is a first!

  Member Comments About This Blog Post:

CARRAND 11/23/2010 8:54PM

    I'm sorry you had the pain, but glad it wasn't something serious. You are doing great on the weight loss! Keep it up.

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JHADZHIA 11/22/2010 10:42PM

    So sorry about the pain :(( Drink pure cranberry juice if you think you have an urinary tract infection..
Its still nice to know you have a down ward weight trend going on.
I really like that you liked your own image in the mirror!! I would say that means your program has been a roaring success!!
emoticon emoticon emoticon emoticon
Well done and keep up the great work!

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ACIMPEGGY 11/22/2010 10:23PM

    If your pain went away after lots of water, I wonder if it was muscle cramping caused by dehydration? That can cause terrible muscle cramps as can potassium levels being too high or too low (go figure).

I'm happy you're pleased with your progress. Speech? emoticon

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EMPTYNESTER60 11/22/2010 9:53PM

    I'm sorry you woke up in pain but glad they didn't find anything wrong, although that is sometimes annoying because you don't have the answer to what caused the pain in the first place. Hope it doesn't come back. You're doing a good job with the weight loss. Keep it up!

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FOOFIE17 11/22/2010 9:52PM

    Thanks for writing! It was great to read your blog!

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