RUTHXG   44,804
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Slippery outside, productive inside

Sunday, December 09, 2007

This wasn't a good day to be outside much--this morning the ice on the sidewalks made walking to church a bit treacherous. But I thoroughly enjoyed the service; I was on the worship team. Singing in harmony makes me so happy.

I'm proud of myself too: this afternoon I attacked a big pile of (mostly) junk mail on my worktable--you know how catalogs & fundraising solicitations come thick & fast toward the end of the year. I got lots sorted & took two bags of different kinds of paper out to our recycling bins. Then I dealt with our condo bills; I'm treasurer this year & had fallen behind with recording bills paid in our account book. Now everything is paid up AND recorded--yay! Plus I have been doing laundry. This evening I'm going to attack our family finances & pay a bunch of those bills too.

My preference would have been to spend at least a couple of hours working on one of my illustrations, but getting these financial things out of the way adds to my peace of mind considerably. In that sense it has been a restful day. And my calories tally comes to 1201, & I feel full & satisfied.

  Member Comments About This Blog Post:

PJBOKC 12/10/2007 8:22PM

    That was a very productive day! Now your mind will be freed up to work on your illustrations. I'll see you on the message board.

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STEPHANIEDIAN 12/10/2007 9:37AM

    sounds like a very productive day. One thing I hate about chicago winters, driving in the mess of winter (ice, snow, sleet) it's not fun, mostly because others don't take much caution. I hope I'm as productive today as you were yesterday!!!!!! Feeling full & satisfied, what a great combination!

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Rewarding myself

Saturday, December 08, 2007

From a link in one of today's SP e-mails:

Give yourself a big reward for the first 12 weeks of hard work

Itís been nearly three months since you started with the SparkDiet, and you are still going strong. Now is a great time to give yourself a reward. Take some time and think of a reward that fits your accomplishment and makes it all worthwhile. Maybe itís an expensive night out with your spouse. Take a weekend vacation, an all-day treatment at a spa, or a trip to see your family. Did someone say "shopping spree?" If moneyís tight, take a weekend off and simply do what you want to do, not what you think you have to do. If you canít splurge on yourself, you can still spoil yourself Ė you deserve it! Revisit a hobby. Go camping. Listen to your favorite CD sitting in a lawn chair in the sun for an entire afternoon. Good work should be rewarded, to replenish your efforts and to keep your motivational juices flowing. So kick back for a bit and bask in your glory!


Monday does mark my 12-week "anniversary" at SparkPeople. So far I've lost 11 pounds. I do reward myself in little ways from day to day, but often it's with a chocolate, which SP frowns upon--food should not be a reward, supposedly. I could argue with that (as long as you're within your calorie range & your other nutritional values are good, not a problem--food is a lovely pleasure, & sometimes it has a legitimate comforting/encouraging function). But I WOULD like to try other kinds of rewards.

Today I picked my Christmas presents online; they include four pairs of long underwear. My husband commented, "But those aren't in the gift category; they're just winter necessities." Still, when I'm trekking through snow to the train I'm going to feel very rewarded! So my brainstorming of rewards for achievements in weight loss & fitness is going to include things that will make my life more comfortable in practical ways--not just "luxuries."

We are limited financially, so I also want a number of reward options that don't involve money. At this time in our lives, going on a cruise will NOT be an option!


1000 Chispa Chick points:
* "home spa" afternoon (already decided)

Reaching my 145-lb goal:
* go to Lincoln or Garfield Park Conservatory with my sister

Reaching my (final) 142-lb goal:
* attend classical concert with my husband

Maintaining 142 lbs for 3 months after that:
* sign up for salsa dance lessons with my husband
* plan a camping weekend in Wisconsin with friends

* spend 2-3 hours working on art
* bake bread
* go to the library
* go ice skating in Millennium Park

* spend 15 minutes immersed in my Guatemala book
* spend 15-30 minutes on a jigsaw puzzle (what fun! it's been years since I worked on one)
* add 3 items to my Amazon wish list
* put on one of my favorite CDs & really listen for 15 minutes
* write an e-mail to my sister
* call my dad

I'm going to come back to this periodically & add to it as more ideas occur to me.

  Member Comments About This Blog Post:

STEPHANIEDIAN 12/10/2007 9:35AM

    Those are great ideas! and it's certainly time for those long johns. It's been so cold here lately. brrr. I guess we've all been here about 12 weeks? didn't we here about the challenge from our spark class? I can't remember. If it's been twelve weeks already, I need to concentrate a little harder. Your rewards are really great! You've "sparked" some ideas in my head. Thanks for sharing

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PJBOKC 12/9/2007 12:28AM

    Ruth - Thank you so much for sharing the article, but most of all for sharing your ideas. You are so creative. I would never think of all those things, yet many of them sound like something I'd like to reward myself with, and for others that wouldn't be for me, I could think of a substitute. I'm going to cut and paste your blog to a word doc and save under "rewards". I guess it's been about 12 weeks since I joined too since we're in the same "weekly" class. I'm so far behind on reading the spark e-mail. Thanks again for sharing your creativity.

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Today's challenges

Friday, December 07, 2007

Fortunately I didn't get a headache from the dilation of my eyes. But they're still dilated today--I wonder whether that's why (unconsciously) several men at work have been a little extra-friendly! I've read that our pupils dilate when we are attracted to someone. :-) Anyway, the guys haven't been out of line or anything. On a more practical note, I pulled down the blinds in my office: the day is gray, but there's snow on the ground & all the whiteness is a bit bright for my eyes.

Our company is having its holiday party today starting at 3:00. It's very genteel: wine, champagne & other beverages, fancy sandwiches, cheeses, probably little shishkebobs & other appetizers. I could eat enough to not need dinner, except . . .

I'll leave a little early because tonight we're taking my daughter & a friend to a good Colombian restaurant to celebrate her birthday! Colombian food is high in carbs & fat, so I will need to take extra care. And she has been given SEVERAL birthday cakes by friends & workmates, so she'll bring one of them to share with us afterward at home.

Very likely I won't stay within my recommended calorie range today.

  Member Comments About This Blog Post:

STEPHANIEDIAN 12/10/2007 9:30AM

    I hope you had a wonderful time at your daughter and her friend out! You're office party sounds very upscale (wine and cheese) hehehe. What fun, I used to love office parties.

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MARYLOUD 12/7/2007 9:33PM

    Enjoy your daughter's birthday dinner. It's worth going out of your calorie range for. I'm sure you're not going to double your calories or anything that drastic. Funny about the eyes. ;-)

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Strange day

Thursday, December 06, 2007

I stayed home today & was going to work as well as go to an appointment with an ophthalmologist who specializes in eye muscle issues. However, it turned out that he needed to dilate my eyes as part of the exam, & I had to wait more than half an hour for the dilation, & then afterward my vision was a bit fuzzy. You'd better believe I took great care driving afterward, but I needed to stop by the library & the grocery store, so it became a LONG outing. Then at home I wasn't in shape to get back into an editing project--too taxing on my eyes--so I decided to do some cooking. I'll count today as a sick day.

I made black bean chili from scratch, & while the beans were going through their quick-soak I tried out a recipe I had gotten from a friend--chocolate chip zucchini muffins! I made them with white whole wheat flour & a little wheat bran, & oh my goodness they are yummy. Supper was great. Was well within my calorie limit for the day even though we each had a muffin for dessert.

I REALLY enjoy cooking good food from scratch. There's something very calming & satisfying about it. Wish I had time to do it more often.

Oh, about my eye prognosis: I've had an eye muscle problem since childhood, & in recent years I've had a kind of reversion even though when I was 15 I had surgery to correct it. The doctor said we should first try getting my contact lens prescription strengthened (my vision has deteriorated a LOT just in the last year) & see whether my eyes start moving together again. If not, after a few months I'll probably have surgery (not laser surgery on the cornea but surgery on the muscles that attach to the eyes).

  Member Comments About This Blog Post:

PJBOKC 12/6/2007 10:31PM

    Ruth - keep us posted on your eye condition. I know it can be really concerning when you have eye problems. I'm sure you have a good doc who'll take good care of you - and you take care of yourself. Does it bother your eye condition to do all the reading you do? I'll keep you in my prayers.

Your food sounds so good. Are the chili and muffin recipes on sparkpeople? I'd like to try both of them.

Hope your vision is back to normal soon. I get a terrific headache when I have my eyes dilated - hope you didn't go through that.

Again - keep you (and your doc) in my prayers.

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Just one little bit of good news:

Wednesday, December 05, 2007

One more pound lost! Yay!

  Member Comments About This Blog Post:

MARYLOUD 12/7/2007 10:14AM

    Woo hoo! Way to go Ruth!

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STEPHANIEDIAN 12/7/2007 9:32AM

    That is AWESOME!!!!!!!!

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PJBOKC 12/6/2007 12:33AM

    WOOHOO FOR YOU RUTH!!!! Your committment and progress is such a good example for all of us.

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