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The Best Things in Life Are Free

Thursday, February 25, 2010

emoticon You're walking through a restaurant on your way to your table, when you notice a gentleman sitting with a lady at a table. His hair is silvery white and although he is elderly, his hair is thick and beautifully styled. You lean over and say in a quiet voice as you pass by; "You have the most beautiful hair." And off you go.

You are walking down the aisle of a grocery store and notice a woman in one of those electric carts struggling to get a package down from an upper shelf. You walk over and ask her if you may be of assistance. She smiles in gratitude as you hand her the package she desired.

You're jogging down the street when you see a small dog coming toward you trailing his leash behind him. The owner is huffing and puffing his way toward you also, still half a block away. You reach down and grab the leash, and return the wayward dog to the owner.

All these little acts of kindness were simple to do, both made the recipient feel good, and none of them cost you a penny. Why don't we all take the time to do more kind little acts as we see a situation where we can either make someone feel good or be of help to someone? A smile is such a little thing to give, wonderful to receive -- and some of the acts we can do for others mean very little to us, but to the person who is in need or handicapped it may be the bright spot of their day!

  Member Comments About This Blog Post:

DEBBIER9 2/25/2010 10:10PM

    yes there is much we can do that is free and feels good thank you for sharing emoticon

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LOVE2MEN 2/25/2010 9:32PM

  Thanks Eve! Very true. I'm finding that the older I get the easier it is to give compliments. It's nice to be able to say or do something without worrying about what someone else will think.

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FREELADY 2/25/2010 9:01PM

    I enjoyed this! Thank you for reminding us and spurring us to love & good deeds!

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VITCHY-VICKI 2/25/2010 12:06PM

    emoticon emoticon emoticon

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KESELF 2/25/2010 12:03AM

  So true! I think it takes real effort at first to be conscientious like that, but eventually it becomes instinct.

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My Ah-Ha Moment

Tuesday, February 16, 2010

emoticon I finally had one of those "ah-ha" moments! I hear about them everywhere I turn, but I can't say I've ever really experienced one. But yesterday after blogging about my addiction to the night time munchies, I vowed I must find a way to overcome it. My normal evening meal consists of a big green salad with fruit and nuts added, very healthy and I feel it has helped me in my efforts to lose unwanted pounds. Last night I just didn't feel like eating a salad though, and as I thought about what I wanted, a recipe I hadn't made in a long time came to my mind. I sauteed a few frozen veggies (Asian Stir Fry @ Costco) in a bit of olive oil, and while doing that cooked up about 4 oz. of spinach/garlic pasta that I had on hand. When it was cooked, I drained it, added the pasta to the veggies and topped it off with a few more dribbles of olive oil and some freshly ground parmesan cheese! It was not only delicious but I did not have the munchies the entire evening. Considering I ate at about my normal time of 6:00 p.m. or so, this is pretty amazing. To test it out even further, I decided to try it again tonight to see if it would be as effective two days in a row. Sure enough, same results. So as I sat here getting my Spark Points it suddenly hit me -- my Ah-Ha Moment! My body must need carbs to keep the munchies at bay. And as having the pasta in the evening instead of the salad isn't upsetting my caloric intake, I'm still maintaining or losing. And no more bouts of munchies during my evening hours of watching TV/working on the computer.

This is a major breakthrough, because I realize for me those munchies were sabatoging my healthy lifestyle and nibbling away at the good results. Instead losing 0.2 I was gaining 0.2 and sometimes even 0.4, even though I had been a good girl all day long -- making the right choices for food, and getting exercise. The munchies were heaping on all the wrong type of calories in amounts that were really adding up.

Does this ring a bell with anyone else out there? Is your body trying to tell you something, and maybe you're just not listening? I'm just happy that I realized it now so I don't have to torture myself with withdrawal symptoms from my addiction. When I have a dinner full of carbs (but healthy ones) I don't even THINK about those little temptations!

Come join the good life!

  Member Comments About This Blog Post:

GETFITTER7 2/28/2010 11:39AM

    emoticonthat you found that out. With me it was the bloating feeling around the middle...I found that my sodium intake was too high. Tracking it made me aware...also I wasn't drinking enough water...I guess we all have to listen to our bodies...wake ourselves to listen up! emoticon

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DHSPARK 2/25/2010 6:41AM

    My gosh...that is just emoticon that you figured out that healthy carbs sustains you better than a salad.

Ah-ha moments are just freakin' emoticon!

Spark On!
Deb emoticon

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ANNANN63 2/16/2010 5:17PM

    Congratulations on finding a solution. My sister found that when she ate breakfast, lunch, and dinner instead of missing a meal here and there, she didn't have evening munchies. Whatever works.

Way to Go!

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ROSY_TIAMO 2/16/2010 5:16PM

    I've come to realize that there's two different kinds of carbohydrates, complex and simple. Digestion of complex carbohydrates takes longer. The slow absorption of sugars provides us with a steady supply of energy and limits the amount of sugar converted into fat and stored!

Eating the complex carbs will satisfy us longer. The simple carbs will cause us to be hungry, and want more.

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FREELADY 2/16/2010 8:00AM

    Great job observing your pattern and finding a strategy to meet your goals!!!

I think my experience fits this pattern. But if my carbs are lower, I notice it all the next day. At the other extreme, if I have an excess eating day, the next day will be a really hungry one for me, too. Guess my BALANCE needs to be looked after, huh?!

Thanks for a delightful blog!

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VITCHY-VICKI 2/16/2010 7:40AM

    emoticonI will have to try that thanks for info

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ERIECANALGAL 2/16/2010 1:28AM

    Yes, eating too little at supper will cause you to be hungry later. Very good insight.

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Saying Goodbye is Really, Really Hard!

Sunday, February 14, 2010

emoticon You all know how hard it is to say goodbye. That first day of kindergarden as your little son or daughter climbs onto the bus and waves goodbye. Heartbreaking! Or as the happy college student waves goodbye as he/she is off to college. The house is empty and we feel a kind of emptiness too! Or saying goodbye to relatives when you go visit or when they stop by to see you. All those goodbye's are hard, difficult, teary eyed and slobbery! But after two years of being on Spark People I realize I am facing one of the hardest goodbye's I've ever had to do. I'm going to have to say goodbye to my "evening nibbling" or at the very least substitute healthier alternatives. That is -- if I hope to reach my goals, then surpass then, which I have every intention of doing -- then it's goodbye to the evening nibble time!

Ah, it was lovely and seemed so innocent, and we've gotten to be "such good friends." It would start off with an innocent cup of hot tea. But wouldn't a cookie taste good with the tea? Or those chocolate covered macadamia nut clusters are shouting for me to come taste one, they are soooooo satisfying! How about the glazed pecans still on hand from Christmas or the peanut butter ice cream in the freezer. No! No! I've got to put that stuff out of my mind!

I reach for the remote and turn on the TV. I think I'll watch Gray's Anatomy, I can become so deeply engrossed in that show I won't even think about food. But the commercial comes on and it shows this delightful sandwich of ham and cheese and as the person on TV sinks their teeth into it, you can almost taste it yourself, can't you? Or the pizza ads -- I haven't let myself order pizza for over a year! And there they are, all of them looking pretty darn slim too, just stuffing their faces with it. Next is someone ordering and 'eating' a hamburger that has as many calories as I allow myself in an entire DAY! This is all just inhumane -- so I take a small sip of my tea, and think; "compared to all that food that they're eating at least I could just take a handful of those new Nut Thin crackers I picked up.' And I go get a handful. But as the evening wears on the yearning in my tummy is still pestering me, water doesn't help, willpower already went to bed and won't talk to me, even my dog wags her tale as if to say "I'll help you eat it."

A couple of nuts go into my mouth, then maybe just one bite of the ice cream -- never take a dishful because then you have to admit that YOU ATE ICE CREAM! Snatches here and there don't count, do they? You open the refrigerator and scan quickly over your choices, hoping there is something healthy but desirable right in the front. Of course there never is, but we should never give up hoping, should we? Finally after one of this, two of that, and a good dollop of guilty conscience, you trot off to bed, wondering how bad the news will be when you step on the scale the next morning!

So finally, I have taken that first brave step toward ADMITTING TO MY ADDICTION! I am a night time nibbler. I have to give it up the same as I gave up soda's. They don't even tempt me any longer. I gave up red meat for all intents and purposes. It doesn't tempt me. I never eat chocolate (unless it's covering nuts or raisins) and pies -- when was the last time I EVER had a piece of pie? I think I had a little piece at Thanksgiving! I wonder if there is a 12-step program for night time nibblers? I'm addicted, I'm guilty, and it is the hardest thing in the world for me to say goodbye to all those lovely little things that kept me happy and content during those long evening hours. But with tears in my eyes, I know it is time to say goodbye and move on to fulfilling my goals.

  Member Comments About This Blog Post:

LOVE2MEN 2/25/2010 9:42PM

  You crack me up, Eve! Now that you'll have extra time in the evenings, I'm sure your pooch would enjoy some of your attention! Great goal!

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DHSPARK 2/25/2010 6:36AM

    emoticon on saying emoticon to those nighttime nibbles. I do this too. You explained your dilemma so clearly that I almost felt I was right there with ya!

That's one of many reasons why you're such a good leader. You are willing to share your weaknesses and how you deal with them. That is so helpful to others as well as yourself.

Way to go, Eve! NO to nighttime nibbles!

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ROSY_TIAMO 2/15/2010 11:40AM

    I love your sense of humor and your wit. When I first started reading, I thought, "Oh no, this is going to be sad". I feel your pain, "Been there, done that!" I even gave up cigarettes 7 years ago, which wasn't as hard as giving up all my comfort foods.

I just don't allow all the junk food in the house. If it's not there, I can't eat it. It's not easy, but I find as I'm getting older, I want to be healthy. For years I smoked, drank, and ate anything I wanted. Now at 71, I'm living a more healthy lifestyle, and feeling great.

You've taken the first step towards success, by willing to say goodbye to the nightime nibbles. So wipe those tears from your eyes, and shout "I KNOW I CAN!"

Good Luck
Rosy/Tiamo emoticon emoticon emoticon

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IMEOWASWELL 2/15/2010 9:14AM

  Hello fellow addict! Good luck in your endeavors. How I handle it is I don't have those tasty temptations in the house, so even if I look for them they are not there.

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FREELADY 2/14/2010 11:42PM

    What a great blog. Your writing is so creative . . . you really get your meaning across, and it's so enjoyable, too!

By the way, you said, "It is the hardest thing in the world for me to say goodbye to all those lovely little things that kept me happy and content during those long evening hours." I want to encourage you with this thought: when you are no longer eating in the evening, you will discover some OTHER lovely little things . . . that WILL keep you happy and content . . . during those PLEASANT evening hours. Honest. It is not easy, but I know you will be very, very glad when you have done this.

Sounds like you have great clarity. You also have a great experience bank in making significant changes that truly benefit you. Impressive and inspiring!

emoticon emoticon

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ZNEKITA 2/14/2010 9:39PM

    You have already been successful in giving up other things. I know you can do this.

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ANNANN63 2/14/2010 7:58PM

    Well said. I too, like eating late in the day. I rarely have problems with food until 4pm or later. I made a new goal 8 days ago to eat nothing after 8PM and I have been successful. I will wait until 21 days are completed and then I will consider changing the time to 7 or 7:30. The earlier I stop eating, the better I do.

I know you can do this. Congratulations on taking this step.


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Getting to know me....

Wednesday, February 10, 2010

All there is to know about Eve (well, maybe not quite "everything") in alphabetical order:

A - AGUIRRE, my last name. Not really mine but my deceased husband's. My maiden name was Douglas, a nice Scottish name!

B - BOLD, yes, I'm right out there, kind of aggressive and outspoken.

C - CURIOUS and cunning, like a cat.

D - DARING, I'm the one who would volunteer to do things, and not hold back just because I had not ever done it before, or because maybe it had never been done before.

E - ENERGETIC and love it. I like to be on the move. Slowing down a little as I'm getting older, but not so much that I can't still enjoy life.

F - FUN. Life is never boring!

G - GOALS -- we need them to get anywhere. Couldn't do just one here as there is also: GENEROUS, share what you have and it comes back ten-fold

H - HONEST. The word speaks for itself

I - INTERESTING, the same way that life itself is interesting. A little crazy maybe, but I figure that's better than boring.

J - JAZZED -- well, I'm jazzed about my healthy lifestyle. It's something that's a keeper

K - KEEPER! Like I said above, my healthy lifestyle is a keeper! Will never allow myself to backslide.

L - LOVABLE AND LOVING! It's what life is all about

M - MEAT -- it doesn't happen too often, especially the red variety. I'm into chicken and fish.

N - NUTRITION is the base that a healthy lifestyle is build upon, the foundation!

O - OPPORTUNITY -- it's there, just open the door.

P - PLEASED, that's how I feel when I see lower numbers on my scale, when I can slip back into a smaller size, and when I see that image in the mirror.

Q - QUESTIONS? I'm full of them, and also love to answer them. My theory is this: if you do not ask the question, how can you get the answer!

R - RENEE' is my daughter, my proudest accomplishment. The apple didn't fall far from the tree.

S - SONS, I have two of them. Neither of them see me as someone important in their lives.

T - TERRIFIC -- that's how I choose to feel. We all have choices!

U - UNIQUE! Yes I am, but so are you. It's one of the best things about us, our individuality, the traits that make us special. Don't ever try to make yourself into someone else.

V - VICTORY! All it takes are a few goals and the willpower to carry them out. We can all change our lives, the choice is up to us.

W - WILLINGLY enter into the race, the endeavor, the project, whatever name you have for it. Do it for "yourself" never for someone else.

X - X out all the things you don't want in your life, and put in their place the new healthy habits and put the information to work that you've learned. You'll be a better person for it.

Y - YOURSELF -- do it for YOU!

Z - ZEST! Fill your life with it, make enthusiasm part of your vocabulary!

Hugs to all my friends! Eve

  Member Comments About This Blog Post:

ROSY_TIAMO 2/14/2010 7:56AM

    I love what your letters in the alphabet stand for, really inspirational. I too have a loving daughter who is my proudest accomplishment. I also identify with the letter (s) for son, but only one.......I know your sadness.

Rosy aka Tiamo emoticon

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DEBBIER9 2/10/2010 9:46PM

    You are an inspiration and I am truly blessed to have you as a friend.
Yes you must work for what you want and believe in yourself those are words to live by. emoticon

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VITCHY-VICKI 2/10/2010 8:57PM

    Well that is really different then what I had but nice to get to know you a little more.

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BRENDAGAIL9 2/10/2010 8:27PM

    I like your attitude!!


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ANNANN63 2/10/2010 4:56PM

    Way to Go!

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4CINDY2010 2/10/2010 1:09PM

  You are an amazing lady!!! I am proud to have you as a SparkFriend! I think your wonderful attitude about life & your goals and how you carry them through is why you look so young & healthy! Keep up the good work. It is obviously working!! emoticon

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The Spark - Week 2

Tuesday, February 09, 2010

OK, looking at that little gal, I'm not sure if she's an angel or the devil (she is kind of mean!) but you do know that we all have that little voice inside our head telling us about it when we start making excuses why we "just can't do something" and it generally involves one of our goals and the steps that are necessary to "make it happen!"

I did great in my first week, in fact I exceeded my goals -- all except for one! That one was to go to the gym! I only asked myself to go ONE TIME, how hard could that be. But I distinctly remember leaving the Library and thinking "I could go to the gym now." But those little excuses started to form. I'm so tired, my back is starting to hurt, and I'm hungry. Hmmmm! And did you go to the gym? NO! You did not. So even though you came through with flying colors on everything else, where did you end up? You ate protein for breakfast -- GOOD! And instead of doing it 4 days, you did it the entire 7! You walked 10-15 minutes, you wrote in your journal. Yes! And you did all those things every day! I'm proud of you for that. But did you take notice of your weight. It went up, then down, down a little more, then the last two days it crept up to just 0.2 heavier than what you started at. Your inches were OK, but I'll bet if you'd gotten that gym day in the weight might have been less instead of more!

So now we're on Week 2! You've upped your goals just a bit. Now you expect to walk 15-20 minutes, and you've added a couple more exercises. That's great. You did a good job writing all that down, honey -- now it would make me real proud if you'd just DO THEM! Sure it takes effort, sure it takes time -- but those pounds didn't just fly onto your body from the person sitting next to you, now did they? You know how they got there, and it's going to take some work to get them off. Don't get lazy after all the progress you've made, you've come so far, don't backslide on me now. I'm starting to get used to wearing smaller clothes, I'm even used to not stuffing myself with ice cream way too often.

Remember, darlin' "nothing feels as good as being slim looks." OK, give me that journal, where are my tennis shoes -- I'm on it!!!

  Member Comments About This Blog Post:

ANNANN63 2/9/2010 6:58PM

    I have had times when I did my weight work regularly and times when I didn't do it for ages. My turning point happened a few months ago. I was down on the floor with Joey, it was late, I was getting tired, and I really struggled to get off the floor. I realized my failure to do my strength exercises were have repercussions that I did not want to live with.

With just a few weeks of going to the gym--where I started with just 10, am now up to 25 and will max out at 30 minutes--three times a week have made a wonderful difference. Last night even when I was completely tired out, I could not only get off the floor but I could do it without using my arms to assist me.


The gym isn't just to lose weight or look better, it is to keep us strong so we can do all the wonderful things we want to do now and into the future.


Comment edited on: 2/9/2010 6:58:41 PM

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4CINDY2010 2/9/2010 4:44PM

  That little devil gal is following all of us around!! You are doing great! emoticon You are right, 'nothing feels as good as being slim looks!" - We can do this! Thanks for your blog!

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CATLADY52 2/9/2010 3:26PM

    That little devil! She's been on my back for the last week. We both can do it. Let me get up and I'll be right on it.

To be continued later. emoticon

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