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Tuesday, August 18, 2009

I haven't been around much lately, except to track my calories, which I've been keeping up religiously. I'm back on Cape Cod, but I brought my computer, and I've been totally on track! My weight is now down to 143.8 so I'm within a handful of pounds away from my goal weight. :) I'm comfortable in a bikini these days and feeling good, and really proud of my choices. I haven't been running in a while, but I've been doing a lot of swimming! The waves aren't great for boogie boarding but I've been trying, and walking up and down those huge dunes (especially UP) is good exercise too. Tomorrow we're going to bike the entire Rail Trail, which I think is almost 50 miles, so tonight we're going to bed early. Foodwise, I've been making fruit smoothies for breakfast, salads for lunch (spinach, tomato, carrot, red pepper, EVOO, cider vinegar, walnuts, and/or fat-free feta), apples and homemade iced coffee drinks for snacks, and small portions of what everyone else is having for dinner.

Engagement updates...I bought a dress! It's sleeveless A-line, slight sweetheart neckline, beaded top and matching beading at the bottom, and the back of the skirt part splits open to reveal a chapel train with more beading. I also got two veils (blusher and elbow-length), a comb, a petticoat slip, a faux-fur wrap (getting married in February!), earrings, and a necklace. I have everything except the shoes and lingerie. The dress is a size 10, which kinda bummed me out (I thought I'd get a 6 or 8), but I'm telling myself it runs small. :)

Other engagement updates...we've looked at tons of venues and basically picked one, but I have to convince my parents because the place we picked is rather non-traditional. They prefer boring old country clubs, but the place Jess and I like is kind of like a campground, with an inn and lodge that look like ski lodges with wood beams and huge fireplaces. Gorgeous for winter, and they even offer sleigh rides (hard to think about in this heat wave though!). We'd like to have the ceremony in the inn lobby and the reception in the lodge which is a short walk away. We're undecided, but keep fantasizing about Hawaii for the honeymoon, though I'm not sure how much time off of work we can get. Any advice/tips/suggestions would be lovely.

We're doing black/white/red for colors. I plan to be all white from head to toe including flowers, and Jess will wear a black suit with a white tie and boutenire (spelling?!). The groomsmen will wear black suits with red ties and boutineires, and the bridesmaids will wear black dresses with red bouquets. No idea yet what my mother will wear, but since I'm spending the week with the mother of the groom who knows all the rules, I've learned my mom has to select her outfit first so Jess' mom can be sure to get something somewhat coordinating, but less flashy. So many rules!! I don't even care, as long as everyone has fun. :) I can't believe Jess will be my HUSBAND in less than six months!!!!!!! :) :) :) :) :) I am SO in love.

There will be plenty of vacation photos the meantime, sorry I'm not keeping up with everyone's blogs, but I sincerely hope everybody is having a completely fantastic summer like I am!!!

  Member Comments About This Blog Post:

TRACYZABELLE 9/8/2009 1:47AM

    wow girl.. how exciting for you... keep up the good work and coninue to keep us up on what is happening

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MARATHONER340 8/23/2009 7:03PM

    oooooooo...congrats on the dress! I can't wait to see you in it! =) And like everyone else said...don't worry about the size! It really means NOTHING anyways! You are so close to your goal so obviously you look good! =)

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SKYFYRE 8/21/2009 2:04AM

    Glad to hear that you are having a great time and staying on track! I love the colors of the wedding and the best part is your mentality: that everyone have fun!

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SEEHOLZ 8/20/2009 5:50PM

    OMG-- you are like so ready for this wedding! I am so impressed, but when you want something, you make it happen and you definitely do- always!
Congrats on your awesome vacation and your happiness!!!
We'll be here, so don't worry!
I'm with Sharon btw--- make it YOUR day!!!

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SWEATONCEADAY 8/20/2009 12:18PM

    wow you are so ready to get married. well at least your ensemble!! they do run small. my sis' dress was a size 6 and back then at a store she would have been a size 2/4 max. i think my bridesmaid dress was a 10 and i weighed about the same as you back then. sounds like you are having a great time on your trip and are eating super well.

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DRAGONFLY180 8/20/2009 7:24AM

    sounds like the planning is going great. it's nice that you have a mother-in-law that is so knowledgeable and that you are so sweet to not mind her being so involved. the lodge sounds like a wonderful idea. i hope the you and your husband get what you want. i see so many couples acquiesce to families about important wedding decisions. remember that it is your day and his day. and congrats on finding a dress so quickly! i'm pretty sure they do run small.

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LIL_EZZY 8/19/2009 5:32PM

    You are a woman on a mission aren't you???

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ZIRCADIA 8/19/2009 1:44PM

    YAY YAY YAY! :D All the wedding stuff sounds FANTASTIC -- and you sound like you're doing GREAT with the healthy living as well. :) WOOT! Good to hear from ya! :)

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SILLIANGEL 8/19/2009 12:45PM

    I'm so excited for you! It sounds like plans are coming along wonderfully. And the place you picked sounds wonderful. I've always thought a winter wedding would be great in a really outdoorsy place. I don't really know about many places to go for a honeymoon in Feb. when you don't have a ton of time. If you're looking for a shorter flight so that you're not spending 2 days in the airport, you could try central/south america! Hawaii sounds wonderful though.

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ELFITZPA 8/19/2009 12:28PM

    First off, I'm pretty sure most bridal dresses run a good 2 sizes off or so - I always have to get a bigger size in bridesmaid dresses than in normal dresses. You KNOW you're looking good, so ignore that tag. The dress sounds beautiful - your whole color scheme does! So dramatic for a winter wedding, I love it! And the venue sounds AMAZING!! I'm so excited to hear more about the planning and eventually see pictures because it all sounds so wonderful!!!

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MRS.NG.06 8/19/2009 10:15AM

    My wedding dress ran small too but I honestly think they are ALL like that..I had a size 10 as well...when I wear 6/8 do NOT take that for true measurements. I cant believe how fast this has all came together. I needed a good year and a half just to find my dress LOL

Hawaii was AWESOME! We went on Norweigen Cruise Line for 7days and it was fantastic. We went one day early and stayed overnight so we could take our time getting used to the time difference and take our time getting to the boat...we didnt have to worry about a car or a hotel, we let the boat take us and it was great, I would higly recommend it....

Great job hon, looking forward to seeing more pictures and hearing about it all...I WUV wedding stories! : )

Comment edited on: 8/19/2009 10:15:56 AM

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CWRISTON1 8/19/2009 10:01AM

    You can just hear the excitement in your post! I'm so happy for you, and the wedding location sounds perfect!! Who needs stuffy!!??? I think winter weddings are beautiful and in a lodge setting, even better!

When I got married, my bridesmaids wore black and white and carried a single red rose, which was beautiful. I'm sure you'll be happy with that choice :-)

Enjoy the Cape!! Sounds like you are having a wonderful time

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RUN_LIFT_EAT 8/19/2009 9:09AM

    Wow awesome job getting all these details together so quickly! Your dress sounds divine, as do your color choices! I hope your parents go for the lodge that sounds really cool!

Glad you're having fun, look forward to photos!

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MBSHAZZER 8/19/2009 9:09AM

    YAY, this is soooo exciting! I can't believe you picked a dress so quickly! And, FWIW, bridal / bridesmaids dresses always run small... they are the same sizes from 70+ years ago. My last bridesmaid's dress was a size 12, I think, and at the time I probably weighed about 118 or so... so don't give the size a thought...

Since I'm always a bridesmaid, never a bride (haha!) I don't have too much advice except to do what you want to do... its YOUR day!

Enjoy the rest of the summer. And those waves should pick up pretty soon, with Hurricane Bill churning away!

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BOOTS1221 8/19/2009 8:28AM

    Awwww I'm literally sitting here smiling from ear to ear reading this!!! Your love and excitement just pours out through your words and I am sooo happy for you. It really sounds like you are super organized, and I'm so happy you found a dress! Keep the updates coming!!!!

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FITGIRL15 8/19/2009 8:04AM

    Wow, I can't believe how on top of this you are!!! Seems like you've been thinking about this for a long time... and done some research well in advance! I'm so behind... but I guess that's just me! emoticon

I would suggest Hawaii as an AWESOME choice as a honeymoon destination! I've only ever been to the island of Maui, but it truely is an amazing, romantic, adventerous place! Lots to see and do, that's for sure!!! And the beaches, oh my! You'll just feel like you've died and gone to paradise! Seriously... I actually want to get married there... that's still to be determined financially, though!

Congrats on your current weight! I bet you look ammazing, and should be damn proud to walk around in a bikini! You go girl!

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GERMANPICKLE 8/19/2009 1:39AM

  talk about organized! way to go you!!

Break the rules! Break the rules! Break the rules!

(just joking around)

Sounds great!

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PRAIRIEDAWNPAM 8/19/2009 12:39AM

    Wedding dresses are typically in European sizes, so a "bridal 10" is really an 8. You're doing great. My wedding dress was a size 20!

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VIVA_VICTORIES 8/18/2009 10:09PM

    Wedding dress sizes are ridiculous!! You would think they'd want to make a new bride feel tiny and boost her self esteem. Not make her feel bigger than she actually is.

Just got back from Hawaii and LOVED Maui. We also went to Oahu, but it is so commercialized that I think Maui is the way to go. I didn't want to go home. There was so much natural beauty and a relaxed way of life there... I did gain 4lbs though. Even though I ate a lot of fish and did a lot of snorkeling, I still ate and drank A LOT. Not going to complain about the weight gain though because it was my wedding and honeymoon.

Keep enjoying your summer and engagement time, sounds like it's a very magical time in your life.

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Which photo?

Saturday, August 08, 2009

Should I switch over to a bridal website for my blogs for the next six months?? Chances are I'm going to want to write about being engaged more than I'm going to want to write about health/fitness (although I'm holding my own in that area - I've lost the temporary weight I gained while on the Cape and then some, and have big plans to look my fittest ever on my wedding day, OF COURSE).

Anyway...for those who get sick of the sappiness, I apologize - perhaps check back in with me in seven months after this stuff is all over!! :) For those who don't mind, however, I could use a bit of advice...

My parents want to put a photo in the paper with our engagement announcement. Jess' mom also seems to think we should do a photo save-the-date card.

Which photo should we pick?? (The first few are quite new and some were taken specifically for this purpose...the rest are older photos I like of us.)

Choice 1:

Choice 2:

Choice 3:

Choice 4:

Choice 5:

Choice 6:

Choice 7:

Choice 8:

Choice 9:

Choice 10:

Choice 11:

Choice 12:

  Member Comments About This Blog Post:

PRAIRIEDAWNPAM 8/17/2009 11:37PM

    I vote for 2 and 4. I love weddings, so blog away!

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AFENTO05 8/15/2009 8:58PM

    My personal fav is no. 6! You look SOOO happy and he looks just as proud! emoticon

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TRACYZABELLE 8/14/2009 6:32AM

    6 is the one for me it is what bliss looks like

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BRITT29 8/13/2009 10:18AM

    I like #6 and #11. #11 is my fave! And Congrats! I am a newlywed myself so I love these kind of things. :)

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MEGHOUSE 8/12/2009 8:53PM

    I like #6 - have you picked one yet??? Congratulations on the engagement!!!! And holy moly, I can't believe you have a dress already!

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RUN2009 8/12/2009 12:43PM

    I like #6 because you both have sincere smiles and are almost "locked" into each other.

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MARATHONER340 8/12/2009 11:09AM

    fun! I think 3 is really cute in a formal way...but 11 is really cute in an informal way... good luck deciding!!! =)

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TERRIANGEL 8/10/2009 9:40PM

    I like 3&4 because 1) they are really nice (they all are, though) and 2) they demonstrate the Summer, Capey feel of the day you got engaged, yet still "formalish".

Just my opinion. This is a tough one. Good luck!

P.s. Stay on Spark!!! I personally love all the sappy wedding stuff! :)

Comment edited on: 8/10/2009 9:40:58 PM

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    I looked at the others and realized I was in the minority =P When I was forming my opinion, though, I took into account the clarity of the picture, the facial expressions and the background ^-^; I thought 1 and 12 were the highest quality with the best facial expressions.

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    1 or 12 :)

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RA4945 8/10/2009 4:29PM

    Wow, those are great pictures! But I especially love 6, 4 and 11. emoticon I'm so happy for you!!!

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SEEHOLZ 8/10/2009 3:08PM

    Choice 6! You looks so happy in that picture! # 5 is awesome, but not for a save the date card.. but maybe too much wind action-LOL!
Anyways, it's YOUR blog, your space, your journey!

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MILLER*TIME 8/10/2009 11:31AM

    I like 3 and 6 for sure!!!!!

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MRS.NG.06 8/10/2009 11:25AM

    I like 6 and 11 and I dont mind the sappiness..I love it if you want to keep posting away about your getting ready for the wedding...I love re-living that through others stories :D and if you need any help I can give you advice if you need it !

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1972ROSES 8/10/2009 10:44AM

    I like #4 the best. #11 is nice too depending upon how important the Red Soxs are in your life.

Weddings can be very stressful or the bride can be so busy that she forgets to make healthy choices. What I am trying to say is that what is going on in your life can affect your fitness and health, therefore, is very appropriate to blog about on Spark people.

Good Luck, Enjoy.

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ZIRCADIA 8/10/2009 10:29AM

    I like 2 4 6 11 basically similar to what everyone else has been saying. :) Sadly I think 2 is SUPER CUTE of you but less so of the man. :) I don't want him to feel like he got shafted. HAHAHAHAHA

But I wanna read about all the engagement stuff!!! No need to go hide from us SparkPals! :)

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ROGUE_1 8/9/2009 8:13PM

    Nooo, don't switch over to a wedding website! Well, if you do, make sure to keep us posted on how the planning is going :) As for the pics - I vote for # 6 and 11. It's a toss up. I love how you're hugging in photo 6 but # 11 is so much FUN!

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PKELLAM 8/9/2009 12:05PM

    I like 2, 4 and 6.

Good luck!

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ERMAC22 8/9/2009 9:48AM

    I think 6! 11 is cute too.

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BOOTS1221 8/9/2009 9:43AM

    OOh I like 1, 3, and 6!! And don't you dare take your blogs anywhere else, I'm gonna live vicariousy thru YOUR wedding planning!! LOL! I can't wait to hear all the details!!!

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ERYNNEDRA 8/9/2009 9:26AM

    As a fellow Red Sox fan, I have to go with #11!

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    They're all great! But, 3, 4 and 6 are my faves! You are a very beautiful couple!

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SKYFYRE 8/9/2009 8:20AM

    6,11,an 3 are my favorites, but they are all great photos! You two are really photogenic! Please don't go away! I like the sap! heehee!

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HOPERY 8/9/2009 8:01AM

    Congrats! Whoo Hoo! I also like 6 and 11.

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GERMANPICKLE 8/9/2009 4:16AM

And don't your dare disappear! :D

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LIL_EZZY 8/9/2009 3:23AM

    i like # 11 and #6 but 11 is my favorite.

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~*~CRYSTAL~*~ 8/9/2009 12:56AM

    I like #'s 4, 6, 7 & 11. 11 is my favorite though. Congratulations - he's a hottie!

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SWEATONCEADAY 8/9/2009 12:31AM

    i like 11 too.

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BRUIN2 8/9/2009 12:26AM

    5, 6, 7, or 11

I think 5 is my favorite. But 6 isn't so "sportsy" and your hair isn't in your face.

Ooooh, I love wedding planning (especially when it's someone else's wedding!!!).

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FITGIRL15 8/9/2009 12:10AM

    #11 or #3!!!

PS... don't leave Spark!!!

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DRAGONFLY180 8/8/2009 11:58PM

    3, 4, and 6 are my favorites.

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JOPAPGH 8/8/2009 10:52PM


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ELFITZPA 8/8/2009 10:23PM

    Oooh I also really like 6 and 11, but they're ALL super cute!!

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CORIRENEE 8/8/2009 8:51PM

    #4 - #6 or #11!!

Those are my faves :)

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CWRISTON1 8/8/2009 7:40PM

    I'd choose #4, #6 or #11 :-)

Don't change to a bridal blog ~ we all want to share in your joy. So what if you get a little sappy

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MBSHAZZER 8/8/2009 7:16PM

    #6 or #11! Super cute! And I love all the bridal stuff... keep it coming!

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ROWDYWITH4 8/8/2009 6:56PM

    I like #6 best, but might be too dark, Susie is probably right with her choices, black and white, you have to be careful so it won't be too dark.

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RUN_LIFT_EAT 8/8/2009 6:43PM

    They are all really great! I would think 2 or 4 or 7 would be good for black and white? Just to throw this out there but I am a fan of the engagement photo that is the bride to be solo. That may be a southern thang though, you know we crackers do weird stuff ;). Ah, for example, when you get married in the south you drop your middle name and have your single last name replace it. So for me single: Kimberly Diane Blount, married I am now: Kimberly Blount Reeves. Not to be confused with hyphenating, it replaces the "Diane" yeah, I know weird. I didn't realize it was a rgional thing until I tried to get my SAT scores from a million years ago the woman on the phone could not understand for the life of her how my middle name would have changed.

CONGRATS AGAIN! And congrats too on your continued loss!!!!!! WOO HOO Susan is the incredible shrinking woman!

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JONDECKER76 8/8/2009 6:24PM

    I think #6 would be great

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TXHRT4U 8/8/2009 5:47PM

    I would pick #4, but probably wouldn't look as good in the newspaper. #6 would look good.

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GLAZED-DONUT 8/8/2009 5:14PM

    Hi! my 2-cents - 11 or 4 for black & white newspaper (-:
I like some of the others just as much if not more, but being that my job is in graphics I always think about the application of which its going to be used first and if its in black & white those will look the best (-:

Congrats to you by the way, and I love reading girly wedding stuff so bring on the bridal blogs!!!

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DAMIENDUCKS 8/8/2009 5:03PM

    I'd say #6 would be my first choice for the newspaper looks like you're having tons of fun and it'll translate well to black & white.

I like #1 for a save the date--also laid back and fun!

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SILLIANGEL 8/8/2009 4:59PM

    I like #4. You both look the most genuinely happy to be together. Not posed =)

Congrats again! Keep blogging here! We wanna know everything, not just the health stuff! Hell I blog about random stuff all the time!

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VIVA_VICTORIES 8/8/2009 4:44PM

    Choice 6 most definitely!

I would have said 7 except you are sitting in front of him, so you look like a giant and he looks like a tiny kid. That's my biggest pet peeve in photos. Looking like I'm a big girl and going to eat Shaun after the picture is taken. No offense, y'all look GREAT in the photo. Just a pet peeve when guys lean back in a picture and look smaller than us girls!

However, pics 2 or 3 might be better for the paper posting because they look like the put-together engagement photos most people take.

I loved my engagement photos, even though I never did a paper posting or save the date announcement. I am going to use my wedding photos on my mail-outs for the reception when we get back from Hawaii. I think it makes the invitation more personal and people always love to see pictures.

OK, that's my 2 cents for a bride, from a bride (I'm getting married in 2 days!!!)

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PAMELA984 8/8/2009 4:25PM

    I'm a traditionalist so I really like choice - but I also like choice 11 because it looks like you are just having fun!

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"Guess what...will you marry me?"

Thursday, August 06, 2009

Wellfleet, Massachusetts is a special place for Jess and me. For those unfamiliar with Cape Cod, Wellfleet is an hour's drive once you cross the bridge from the mainland, just two towns from the "end of the earth" (Provincetown, the Cape's tip). Because of its relatively remote location Wellfleet is less crowded than other parts of the Cape, and due to the fact that the penninsula that is Cape Cod thins out toward the tip, in Wellfleet you get quiet sunsets on the harbor just minutes from sunrises over the open ocean.

Jess' family has been vacationing there every summer for well over a decade, and for the past five years, I've joined them. While there I've learned to boogie board and to crack a lobster, and I've been generously accepted by Jess' family. While I'm on the Cape it's common for me to bike with Jess' brother, drink a margarita with his mother, put together a jigsaw puzzle with his sister, and watch a Sox game on TV with his dad. I'm treated just like one of the gang, and it's always so cozy and comfortable.

Jess' parents rent a different house each summer now, but that wasn't always the case. For the first several years of their Wellfleet trips, when Jess was a boy, the "H"s stayed in a sweet cottage right in the dunes. Teenage Jess could just walk out the back door, through the beach grass-lined path, and down the huge sand hill to a beach so beautiful, it's easy to imagine you're on a tropical island. There was no need for cars or beach permit stickers or getting melted surf board wax all over your interior. Unfortunately, about ten years ago, a government plan kicked in that turned the house into part of the National Seashore, and to this day it's still standing, slowly deteriorating, but no one's allowed to live there.

The weather in Wellfleet on Saturday, August 1, 2009 was perfect. The Atlantic was as blue as the sunny sky, and after a morning bike ride down the Rail Trail and a lobster salad lunch, Jess and I biked to Whitecrest Beach to meet the rest of his family, who were coming to meet us by car. I caught a bunch of waves on my boogie board as Jess surfed in slightly deeper waters, and then I read in my beach chair under an umbrella until I was dry and it was late afternoon. By this point everyone in the family was out of the water and even though the midsummer sun was still blazing, it was time to start thinking about dinner. We lugged our belongings up the giant sand dune to the parking lot, where Jess and I were able to drop off our belongings in his dad's van in preparation for our bike ride back to the rental house. I didn't notice Jess also picking something up from a hidden corner of the van, and tucking it into his swimsuit pocket.

The family drove off, and Jess asked me if I'd like to bike over to the old cottage, which wasn't far. We like to check on it every once in a while while we're down there, even though nothing ever changes except the amount of peeling exterior paint. Even the same old couch and bed are still inside from Jess' teenage years.

This year was no exception. I know the place brings back memories for Jess, so I took a picture of him standing on the patio.

"Let's take a walk down and look at the beach," Jess suggested.

I agreed, so we navigated our bikes down the quiet path through the brush until the soft sand made it impossible to ride any farther. We laid our bikes down and continued on foot until we reached a spot just above the start of the sloping decline to the beach.

Suddenly, I thought to myself, "OH MY GOSH. What if THIS is THE MOMENT?" You see, I had always loved the idea of getting engaged while down on the Cape, and Jess was well aware of that, but his jeweler had told him my custom-ordered ring wasn't going to be ready yet this particular weekend. And surely I would have been able to tell if he were being sneaky, right...? He'd be acting nervous or he'd let some hint spill out? No, I'm sure it's not about to...

Just then, Jess dropped to one knee and reached into his pocket. I was shaking with emotion.

"Guess what...will you marry me?"

He was shaking too. This I had never seen.

"Yes," I replied, blinking back tears.

He stood and placed a small, open creme-and-black box in my hand. Inside was the perfect ring. Simple, elegant solitaire diamond in a custom-designed white gold band. I looked at the ring, then, at him. We were either laughing or crying, I'm not sure which. I think it's whichever choice means we were happier at that moment. We hugged, we kissed, and he slid the ring onto my finger.

We then proceeded to attempt to take our own picture.

On the path back to the main road, I couldn't contain my joyfulness. It just bubbled straight up from my heart and right out of me in the form of giggles, or shouts, or more tears. Once we were back to civilization we called both sets of parents to share the news, and then we biked to the Beachcomber for champagne. A random man who had learned we were just engaged bought us kamakaze shots, and then Jess' family met us for wine and lobster.

I have thought of almost nothing other than this moment, my February 2010 nuptuals, my happiness, and my love ever since.

  Member Comments About This Blog Post:

TRECECOOKS 8/15/2009 1:23PM

    I think the picture at the end of this entry is the one you should use!!! Congratulations!!

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RUN2009 8/12/2009 12:41PM

    aw this is so sweet- your description of the day leading up to the engagement sounds wonderful- it ALL does! Congratulations!!!

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TERRIANGEL 8/10/2009 9:37PM

    o.k, hon, I finally got a chance to read this. YAY!!!! It was beautifully written and I'm so glad you have it "in print" forever. You can have your kids read this. Your grandkids. It's just amazing, and the Cape is definitely one of the world's best places to get engaged. Especially a place with as much history as Wellfleet has for jess and you both for the past 5 years.

So, cheers to you and your love, my friend! emoticon I could not be happier for you both, and I must say NICE CALL on the Winter wedding plans! I'm a January bride myself and LOVE it. When everyone else is celebrating anniversaries in the summer, we get the treat in mid winter. YAHOO!!


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RA4945 8/10/2009 4:43PM

    Such a romantic story, so beautifully written. Thank you so much for sharing your special memory with us. emoticon

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MILLER*TIME 8/10/2009 11:45AM

    wow what a GREAT blog--- I literally can feel the emotion in your words! Congrats on the engagement, I wish you all the happiness in the world, but it seems you already have it!!!


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EOLIVIAC 8/9/2009 11:45AM

    How lovely! Wishing you both continued blessings and happiness.

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LIL_EZZY 8/9/2009 3:19AM

    This also brought tears to my eyes. What an exciting moment and now you have the wedding to organize which will be fun.

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CARILOUIE 8/8/2009 4:33PM

This blog made me cry a little! I am so excited for you.


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TAURUS22 8/8/2009 1:31PM

    Great blog! Hope you two share many more happy memories together!

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BLUEBOOEYES 8/8/2009 1:21PM

    AHHHHH! Congratulations!!!!! That is such wonderful news and you are going to be a beautiful, fit bride! I can't wait until I get engaged to join all the Bride-to-Be Spark teams. Haha. I bet they always have awesome, gut-busting challenges!

Again, congratulations!

emoticon emoticon

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GERMANPICKLE 8/8/2009 12:07PM

  ladiwolf59 has great advice - just remember that this is a day to celebrate your committment to each other. Not your family's pride or his family's pride or X or Y or Z. I wasn't very successful in recognizing this - but you will be! Have fun too.


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SARIGIRL17 8/7/2009 9:52PM

    Congratulations, and have a fabulous time wedding planning!

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LADIWOLF59 8/7/2009 7:44PM

    I love this story......Now remember when everyone helps to plan the big day it is you that closes your eyes, and sees what the day of your dreams is to look like. Listen to advise, stay calm, plan it your way, with what you can afford.

Mom's have great grand advise and their wedding dreams for you,,,,hear them out,,,,,choose what YOU want.

Having your best friend at your side for life......there is nothing like it in the world, other than the children that come later..........

Take life and live it full, keep it simple, always kiss goodnite even if it's by phone.

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DRAGONFLY180 8/7/2009 7:07PM

    aw, sweet story! congrats again and thanks for sharing the lovely moment with us.

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ALMOSTANGEL 8/7/2009 4:37PM

    Feb. is a great month to get married! Congrats!

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SEEHOLZ 8/7/2009 4:19PM

    OMG- there were tears in my eyes-LOL! This is so incredibly beautiful!
I know how much you've wanted this and I'm so glad that moment has come!

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PAMELA984 8/7/2009 4:09PM

    I am so happy for you - I know you have been wanting this for a long time - and just reading it brought tears to my eyes! CONGRATULATIONS! emoticon emoticon

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PAXTONBLUE 8/7/2009 3:36PM

    Awww...this post just makes you think about all the great things that happen in life. We tend to forget them with the hustle and bustle of every day life. Thanks for giving me such a romantic reminder.

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1972ROSES 8/7/2009 2:47PM

    How wonderful! A perfect place, a perfect story, a perfect... I was going to say ending but this is really just the start, isn't it? Best of Luck. We'll be waiting to read the rest of the story!

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JENONTHEROX 8/7/2009 1:11PM

    I have big tears in my eyes after reading this!
Your engagement sounded beyond perfect.... so happy for you!

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TAMBERTRAND 8/7/2009 12:00PM


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RUNSHANBUN 8/7/2009 11:20AM

    Best Wishes!

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AUNTIE65 8/7/2009 11:11AM

    What a lovely story! Many Best Wishes to you as you begin your new adventure!!

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SWEATONCEADAY 8/7/2009 10:49AM

(since i double posted)

Comment edited on: 8/7/2009 10:50:51 AM

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SWEATONCEADAY 8/7/2009 10:49AM

    OMG!!!!!! congrats!!!!!! too bad about jess' cabin. the same thing happened to where my dad grew up on a mountain when they turned it into a provincial park.

Comment edited on: 8/7/2009 10:51:20 AM

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SILLIANGEL 8/7/2009 10:44AM

    This sounds so beautiful =) I'm so happy for you!

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    Congratulations (again) It sounds amazing.

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DAMIENDUCKS 8/7/2009 10:15AM

    that's beautiful! Congrats!

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ZIRCADIA 8/7/2009 9:59AM

    AWWWWWWWWWWWWWWWWWWWWWWW YAYYAYAYAYAYAYYAYYAYYYYY :D How beautiful! I love it love it love it! :) I'm so happy for you! :)

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MRS.NG.06 8/7/2009 9:44AM

    *wipes away tear* GOD that was absolutely BEAUTIFUL! : ) Reminds me of my own engagement story..well done girlie..well exciting !!

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MBSHAZZER 8/7/2009 9:41AM

    YAY! I was hoping you'd post the story! Way to go, sounds very romantic!

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ELFITZPA 8/7/2009 9:35AM

    Thank you for sharing your story! I don't know if I'm PMSing or what, but I'M sitting here smiling with tears in my eyes, just so happy for you both!! You just sound like such a solid couple and that was a beautiful engagement story! Congratulations again!!

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RUN_LIFT_EAT 8/7/2009 9:32AM

    AWE! Thank you so much for sharing this with us! I am tearing up over here, for real, how SWEET!!!!!!!!!

Did his family know he was going to do it? I bet they were all nervous, too!

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VIVA_VICTORIES 8/7/2009 8:19AM

    That's super romantic!!!!!

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STEFANIE822 8/7/2009 7:23AM

    I am literally in tears right now. Sobbing. This is such an awesome story!!!!!!! Congrats x100000000000000!!!!

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COOPSM 8/7/2009 7:19AM

    Congrats!!!! Enjoy your new journey in life!!!

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KJNE8O 8/7/2009 7:05AM

    WONDERFUL! How cute - "Guess what.... will you marry me?" :)

You must be flying on cloud nine! WOO HOO!

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SKYFYRE 8/7/2009 2:39AM

    Awe! I am again so happy for you! That is a great day! Fun at the beach, happy memories and a lifetime ahead of the two of you! Enjoy the bliss I hope you float in it forever!

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TRACYZABELLE 8/7/2009 12:47AM

    Yeah you got me crying here... I am so so happy for you.. now ou have anohter goal-- to look gorgeous on your wedding day-- which will not be difficult at all!

Congratulations to you both.

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BRUIN2 8/6/2009 11:41PM


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WILDNCRAZY 8/6/2009 11:18PM

    That's wonderful! You two look like the perfect couple! Good job on those pictures. emoticon emoticon

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MAINEACK 8/6/2009 11:15PM

    I LOVE the Cape...what a wonderful place for him to propose. Congratulations!

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CAROBCHIP 8/6/2009 11:11PM

    Great story and pics emoticon

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Happiest Weekend Ever

Sunday, August 02, 2009

  Member Comments About This Blog Post:

TRACYZABELLE 8/5/2009 5:56AM

    How freaking awesome!! You guys look great!

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CRYSBROWN1 8/4/2009 2:24PM

    Congratulations! That is great news! So when is the big day?

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SEEHOLZ 8/4/2009 11:03AM

    Oh YES... I knew it-LOL!
Huge, huge CONGRATS!!!!

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SKYFYRE 8/4/2009 1:55AM

    emoticon emoticon So happy for you! Oh and you get clinking beer mugs because I couldn't find champagne glasses, but I figure since you are such a big baseball fan, you wouldn't mind the beer! Way to go Jess! Love the rock!

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DRAGONFLY180 8/3/2009 9:41PM


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MARATHONER340 8/3/2009 6:26PM

!!!!! =) Can't wait to hear more about the proposal! ;)

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ZIRCADIA 8/3/2009 4:49PM

    FIRST - You look GORGEOUS. :)

Second - WOWIE CONGRATULATIONS!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!
!!!!! :D :D :D :D :D

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ROGUE_1 8/3/2009 1:12PM

    Awwwwwww congratulations, Susan!!! Look at your smile, I love it! You guys look like you're on top of the world. Let the wedding planning commence!

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KIMTASTIC! 8/3/2009 12:58PM

    OMG, YAY! Congratulations!!!!!!!

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MRS.NG.06 8/3/2009 12:51PM


Cant wait to hear the story!! :D

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DAMIENDUCKS 8/3/2009 12:47PM

    Yay!! Congrats!

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    OH YAY!! I bet you're so very happy!! awe

emoticon emoticon

p.s. is that a heart rate monitor? ^^; hehe

Comment edited on: 8/3/2009 11:58:10 AM

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RA4945 8/3/2009 10:59AM

    CONGRATULATIONS!!!! emoticon emoticon emoticon emoticon

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RUN_LIFT_EAT 8/3/2009 10:56AM

    OOOOOOOOOOHHHHH! I had a suspicion somebody was holding out you!!!!!

CONGRATS!!!!!!!!!!!!! emoticon emoticon emoticon emoticon

That is so awesome! I can see the joy radiating out of this photo! Sorry that sounds cheesy but it is true :)!!!

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TERRIANGEL 8/3/2009 10:20AM


"The ring's not ready" my a$$!!!!!!! emoticon emoticon emoticon

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    Excellent. Thanks for sharing.


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MBSHAZZER 8/3/2009 9:36AM

    YAY! Good for you guys! Soooo sneaky!

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ELFITZPA 8/3/2009 9:31AM

    CONGRATULATIONS!!!!! I love that he had you fooled into thinking this wasn't going to be the weekend - I bet it made it THAT much more exciting to be surprised!!! Woohoo!!!

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BOOTS1221 8/3/2009 8:59AM

    AHHHHHHHHH WE KNEW IT!!!!! Susan I'm soooooooo happy for you!!!!!!! Let the wedding planning begin!! DEF keep us updated on ALL the details!!!!!!!

emoticon emoticon emoticon

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BRUIN2 8/3/2009 8:58AM



Can't wait to hear the proposal story!!!

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KJNE8O 8/3/2009 6:50AM

    LOL - I didn't get it at first! ) Congratulations!

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PAMELA984 8/3/2009 6:47AM

    What a nice pic - is that an engagement ring?

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VIVA_VICTORIES 8/3/2009 6:40AM

    WE TOLD YOU!!!!!

How awesome!! Y'all look so happy.

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LIL_EZZY 8/3/2009 4:33AM

    SOOOOO!!!!!! He was Tricking you. I am so happy for you both. You look so happy in your photo. Congratulations.

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GERMANPICKLE 8/3/2009 1:54AM


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FITGIRL15 8/3/2009 12:39AM

    CONGRATS!!! You two look SO HAPPY you're glowing!!!


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JENONTHEROX 8/3/2009 12:15AM



ps. you look like the picture of health (& happiness. . . )

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KMWKENT 8/2/2009 11:54PM

    CONGRATULATIONS!!!!!! YAYAYAYAY! Beautiful picture, by the way!

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MRSJARI 8/2/2009 11:21PM

    Congratulations! emoticon emoticon emoticon emoticon emoticon

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Off to Cape Cod!

Thursday, July 30, 2009

Jess and I are leaving for Cape Cod tonight and coming back on Sunday. I will miss SparkPeople while I'm gone!!

I have recently been re-reading my SP blog, starting with my very first entry back in December 2006, at which point I'd been bouncing around the overweight range my entire adult life and didn't have any idea what I was capable of. So far I've only read through September 2007, by which point I'd already lost over 30 pounds, fell off the wagon hard, and started what was eventually to be a re-gain of all the weight I'd lost (a cycle I have now been through twice). Reading these blog entries, it strikes me how fragile my healthy habits were back then. When I was on track I stuck to my "rules" religiously, and when I was off track I really went wild and felt tons of shame.

I just read an article on the Daily Spark about the shame of re-gaining weight, and then I read through some members' comments. One that really struck a chord for me talked about wondering whether anyone really makes their healthy habits permanent when they first lose weight. It's as if many of us who are formerly overweight need a few trial runs before we really learn enough to get it right. There is so much to learn: types and amounts of food, how to plan and organize, how to track, how to become more efficient, how to stay satisfied with food choices, cardio, strength training, staying motivated, getting support... the list goes on and on. In one of my old blog entries, I wrote that I felt I had to continuously re-invent my program to stay motivated. I really don't feel that way anymore. I am incredibly proud to say that I feel I have a much firmer grasp on the fundamentals of a program that works for me. So I can go away for three days this weekend without freaking out. Because I now know that this healthy lifestyle is permanent for me. And that I can make good choices for both eating and exercise just about anywhere. And that the worst case scenario is that I let go of control a bit while I'm away and gain a few pounds, but that when I come home I'm back to my usual program, and no permanent damage will have been done. What a GREAT feeling!!

On a different note, yesterday's workout was back and shoulders for about 18 minutes, then 10 minutes of running on the treadmill, then 30 minutes on the recumbant bike, random setting, level 4. I was still feeling rather tired...I thought I'd get my heart rate up with the running, but then take it easy on the bike.

I did today's workout much earlier than normal - I got to the gym around 1 p.m. I think that made a difference for my energy level. I did 22 minutes of strength training (chest and abs), and then had a fantastic 65-minute elliptical workout - I REALLY pushed it and my heart rate was in the upper 160s and even lower 170s most of the time. My 10K time was 56:03 and my 60-minute mileage was 6.68. It was interesting to note that when I had finished my cooldown, at minute 65, I had hit exactly 7.0 miles.

Here's a rough idea of my weekend eating plan:
Breakfast - 600 calories - smoothies that I am about to prepare in advance, plus two cups of coffee with soy milk (about 600 calories)
Lunch - 400 calories - one serving of vegetable primavera, one bag of frozen veggies (Trader Joe's Harvest Hodgepodge)
Snacks - 600 calories - two large apples, 50 grams of walnuts (will bag in advance)
Dinner - 300-700 calories - small and healthy free choice! (restaurant or meal with Jess' family)

Oh, and how could one forget - alcoholic beverages! :) If I want alcohol on Friday and/or Saturday night, I need to budget room for it by having a dinner on the smaller side! Same goes for buying a coffee drink while out in P-town or on the Rail Trail!

Daily total - 1,900-2,300

Preparations required:
*Make 3 smoothies (ideally 4 - so I'll have one ready for Monday morning because I'll probably be pretty tired when I get home Sunday night)
*Bag walnuts (3 bags)
*Pack a cooler with three veggie primavera containers and three bags of Hodgepodge
*Bring coffee, soymilk, and mini coffee maker (the house probably has one, but why not bring my tiny one just in case??)
*Bring water bottles, seltzer, tea
*Pack fruit. It just occurred to me that I have a bunch of fruit that will go bad if I wait until next week to eat it. Apples would be SO much more convenient, but they last in the fridge much longer. Doh! I wish I'd thought about that before I went grocery shopping the other day. I'll need to pack an amount of fruit for each day that is roughly equal in calories to two large apples.

Exercise is practically a given on this trip, with my boogie boarding, biking the rail trail (and maybe even roller blading on it a little bit?!?), and of course my current love of running. I won't be getting any formal strength training (every time I tell myself to strength train on vacation I don't actually do it, unless my hotel has a gym or something, and I already checked - my gym doesn't have a branch anywhere near there), but I will be plenty active so that's okay.

I better get going on my food to-do list...and of course, packing clothes!! Talk to y'all when I get back!

  Member Comments About This Blog Post:

ROGUE_1 7/31/2009 2:53PM

    Your plan sounds fantastic! I MUST follow suit for my weekend getaway in August and pack healthy snacks like you have done. Susan, I love reading your blogs - they are always so insightful and help to jump start my motivation to keep on keepin' on!! Thanks for sharing. Enjoy your wonderful weekend!

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    Enjoy your weekend away! Sounds like you have a great plan in place and know exactly what you are doing!

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PAMELA984 7/31/2009 11:16AM

    Planning is essential and you have done that! Have fun!

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ELFITZPA 7/31/2009 10:48AM

    Enjoy your trip!!

What you said about losing weight is probably true. I hate to put losing weight and kicking an addiction on the same level, but maybe they ARE the same? They say rehab usually doesn't take the first time, much like changing diet and nutrition habits doesn't always stick at first. I don't know, I just thought it was kind of an interesting parallel. But I agree that your healthy habits don't sound fragile in the slightest these days!!

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RUN_LIFT_EAT 7/31/2009 10:10AM

    I hardly every do ST on vacation, either. I think it is good to take a break.

I read that SP article yesterday too and thought it was GREAT! Your blog is really resonating with me, as well. Granted I have only ever weighed about 15 pounds more than now, but that is a couple clothing sizes so I feel it, for sure, and I have yo-yoed and it is scary stuff. And so easy to get defeated. I am feeling UBER-BLOATED right now, and the scale is reflecting it right back at me, and it is making me feel fragile, so this blog was really well timed, thanks Susan.

Have a great trip, your plan sounds awesome! Can't wait to hear all about it when you get back :)

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MRS.NG.06 7/31/2009 9:54AM

    I LOVE this blog, so clear and concise with a PLAN!! PLANS are GOOD! Awesome!! I know you can do it girlie, go get em and come back with an awesome report on Monday! We'll miss you too! :D

Comment edited on: 7/31/2009 9:54:39 AM

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    I can't wait to see how it goes :) You're at a place where I -want- to be. That's so inspiring :) Take pics if you remember! :)

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TRACYZABELLE 7/31/2009 6:53AM

    enjoy-- we will be here when you return

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DRAGONFLY180 7/30/2009 7:52PM

    good for you for being so planned out for just a three-day trip. hope you have a great time! by the way, how do you make your smoothies in advance? do you freeze them? what do you make your smoothies out of?

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VIVA_VICTORIES 7/30/2009 6:42PM

    I think what you said about going crazy for a few days and then coming back to normal is right on. Kim turned me onto this idea of a "set point" and, I haven't completely reading about it yet, but it kinda sounds like what you're talking about. I'm assuming part of the set point is going to be a lifestyle change. No one can lose weight and then go back to the lifestyle they were living before.

And that's very brave of you to read past blogs. I don't think I could do it! Especially if I knew there was going to be bad news in there.

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MBSHAZZER 7/30/2009 6:40PM

    You're going to have a great weekend! Enjoy it! I love that you are planning your food - that is the key to making sure you make good choices. Also, you hit the nail on the head regarding your former weight loss / falling off the wagon... if you make it too strict, or a "diet", you set yourself up for failure. You have a fantastic attitude towards it now!

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