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Monterey for Thanksgiving . . . and more

Monday, September 08, 2014

I'm looking forward to a holiday at Thanksgiving....my younger son and I are headed to Monterey, CA to spend time with my older son, who is studying at the Defense Language Institute, as an Arabic Linguist.

I found a great little rental home, not far from the Presidio and walking distance to the Bay. Below, a pic from the Monterey Aquarium.

I have been rather stuck in self pity and grieving the past. I guess I am learning to turn around more often and move forward - in caring for myself.

Really, I need more practice at it.

Discerning what I want to do, and who *I* want to be. Now. And to build relationships now with my sons -- as young adults. I'm working at not having many expectations, except that I am present to the day and be grateful for time together -- allowing honest space for all of us as we grow and a recover from a really difficult year - really last few years.

I so much need to cut my ties with my painful past and to move forward. I have many days between now and the trip to Monterey, to do this.

What do *I* need to do today? What do *I* need to do to take care of myself today? How do *I* feel and then also, how do *I* want to behave? How do *I* want to demonstrate compassion -- both to myself and to those around me that I love? What do *I* need to cut out of my life? How can I treat myself better? Etc.

Learning to be responsible for myself.
Learning about boundaries and emotional honesty.
Learning about accepting what I cannot change.
Learning about acknowledging and letting go of a painful past - that I was really late in seeing and understanding.
Learning to listen to all parts of myself in ways I have not done yet.
Learning to acknowledge and take care of those needs from a central part of myself, that is becoming stronger.

  Member Comments About This Blog Post:

68ANNE 9/14/2014 1:27PM

    I love it when things turn around to face the sun and happiness! You rock

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    Thanksgiving trip sounds like a great idea. It seems to me that you are moving in the right direction. Don't worry if it doesn't turn out absolutely perfect. (on the recent trip I took with my 2 sons, it rained everyday and the internet was lousy until the day before we were scheduled to leave-we still are closer for the effort).

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ONEKIDSMOM 9/8/2014 8:10PM

    Mostly learning that you are worth every ounce of effort that it takes! Kindness, tossing perfectionism to the curb, absolutely... because it's OK to be human. emoticon

And have a great trip for Thanksgiving!

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    It takes time to find the right balance after one has been jolted by a major life change. You have some awesome goals but try to remember to be kind to yourself during the pursuit of them. You'll get there faster if you do!

Cheers, Debra
emoticon emoticon

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    You have a clean slate and your life will be what you want it to be. You have some excellent ideas on how to proceed. You have your trip to look forward to. You have the ability to build a wonderful relationship with your sons. You are still early in the healing process. Things will feel different later on. The good thing is that you can try new things and if they don't work then you can move on to something else. Some day you will have the answer to all of your questions.

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DDOORN 9/8/2014 3:38PM

    So lovely to have events to look forward to savoring!


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MARYBENSON 9/8/2014 3:38PM

    Sounds wonderful. emoticon

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The Scale Moveth Not

Wednesday, September 03, 2014

Just an acknowledgement here. I haven't had a scale victory -- I've had many other victories -- but no weight loss. I am at 254. So, I'm glad for the 34 pounds and all of the healthy changes I've made. I'll have to change it up, exercise consistently -- I fall back on this - and its probably the key. . .I*know* its the key.

  Member Comments About This Blog Post:

IMLOCOLINDA 9/4/2014 8:15PM

    "The scale can only give you a numerical reflection of your relationship with gravity. Thatís it. It cannot measure beauty, talent, purpose, life force, possibility, strength, or love. Donít give the scale more power than it has earned. Take note of the number, then get off the scale and live your life. You are beautiful!"
- Steve Maraboli

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68ANNE 9/4/2014 6:41PM

    Just one day at a time. I still argue with the scale too

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STEVEN2GO2 9/3/2014 8:31PM

    Think positive at least it was not a gain! Congrats on the 34 lost so far! At least you have not given up! You just are evaluating your plan and the good news you know what you think will make the emoticon move in the direction you want it to!


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ONEKIDSMOM 9/3/2014 7:22PM

    It takes effort on all fronts for me... and the landscape constantly changes for what it will take. Here's to fresh motivation, and never giving up! emoticon

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    I sure can identify with the lack of scale movement. I got my dues notice for the second year of my small weight loss group and my little book shows a loss of less than 5# since I started last fall. I console myself that I haven't put back on the 20 that I lost, but still, it would be nice to get going again. Portion control would do the trick for me I think, but the minute an unwelcome emotion hits, I'm off and running for food.
We can do this!

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    Just keep moving and that scale will eventually move. You are doing great!

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DDOORN 9/3/2014 11:23AM

    The heck with the scale...YOU'RE moving! Your LIFE is moving!

That's what counts! :-)


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FEEDTHEHUNGER 9/3/2014 10:57AM

    My body has several stubborn set points -- set way too high IMHO -- and I have to work very hard to get past them. I'm working on one now so I know what you mean. I believe that consistency, consistency, consistency is the key. Stay within the range -- sometimes high, sometimes low -- and work out 6/7 days per week. It's simple, but not easy.


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MAINEALI 9/3/2014 10:55AM

    This too, shall pass! I think you have the right idea about changing up the exercise!

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TERRILLW78 9/3/2014 10:48AM

    I would hit a spot occassionally where, no matter what I did, the scale wouldn't budge. Just keep in mind, it's better that it's not moving either direction than moving up. emoticon

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KLONG8 9/3/2014 10:46AM

    It's a tough journey, isn't it? Sounds like you know what your situation is and you are right to celebrate the weight you've already lost. Well done! I just came from a period where I yo-yo'd for 8 months! Just getting back into it now. emoticon

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A Place at the Table for Everyone

Monday, August 18, 2014

It's a round table. Beautifully set, with lovely linen napkins and shining silverware. I'm mostly aware of the napkins and silver -- but the rest of the picture includes beautiful china, on chargers, a tablecloth, and fresh flowers in shades of white and light green -- including lilies, hydrangea, and roses. Perhaps the roses would be a deep burgundy.

The food is not on the table. Its the place setting and the beauty of the arrangement that is critical.

There is a place at this table for each part of me --- all my thoughts, developmental orphans, my body, and those body parts of myself that I do not always like to own. Feelings and needs that I have marginalized. Sassy parts. Hurt parts. Scared parts, of course. Courageous and strong parts.

No more hiding. Or circuitous attempts to get my needs met.

"Everyone" is welcome at this (my) table. No one will be left out and everyone will get what they need.

I've been preparing a long time. Not so long ago I couldn't even imagine that I would want to do this or be so welcoming to all of myself.

Like, wow. Long way to go. I'm sure there will be table talk . . . .


  Member Comments About This Blog Post:

68ANNE 8/24/2014 2:53PM

    It will be a wonderful table for all of you to sit at

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MICKEYH 8/19/2014 9:11PM


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-SHOREIDO- 8/19/2014 11:15AM

    Your inner beauty on paper here!! Very nice!! emoticon

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AQUAGIRL08 8/19/2014 10:45AM

    Lovely blog! What a beautiful table you have set for yourself. Enjoy the journey!

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DDOORN 8/19/2014 10:00AM

    Such a beautiful picture you "paint" of your progress, your present and visions for your future...


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IMLOCOLINDA 8/19/2014 12:00AM

    How wonderful that you are at a place to feed and nourish ALL of yourself, just for YOURSELF. You are so deserving of the meals at your beautiful table...to meet all your own needs! Capable, beautiful YOU!

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PGHP31CK 8/18/2014 9:15PM

    Pam, I love what you wrote--you expressed yourself beautifully! So glad that you're ready to meet all of your needs without questioning. I'm proud of you! And I'd love to be in on that table talk!!


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    Love your sense of inner inclusion and acceptance. You have created a nice vision for yourself - a place where all of us would like to be and would love to join you too. Eating isn't even all that important when you are in a good place like this. You have encouraged me to want to "set" my own table too and love the beauty of it and myself.

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ONEKIDSMOM 8/18/2014 8:33PM

    I'm a great believer in self-pampering, including things like pouring my grape juice into a wine flute, to dress it up. The eyes are an important part of savoring a meal. Well done! emoticon WE are worth treating like company!

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MELYROD18 8/18/2014 6:14PM

    Looks great! emoticon

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Accountability update

Saturday, August 09, 2014

I am at the end of this summer cold -- I hope. I still have an unpredictable cough and wheeze, but I am definitely getting better. So much for my plans for training this week!!!

This next week, I will be more actively getting ready for the semester with meetings, etc. Time to be more structured!

Nonetheless, here's my plan update for this next week:
Today - water jogging - 15 minutes minimum (I did this yesterday, too).
Sunday - water jogging - 15 minutes
Monday - out of town company - maybe a walk....
Tuesday - my 1:1 yoga lesson and water jogging, shorter walk with dogs
Wednesday - strength training and water jogging
Thursday -- water jogging and walking
Friday - strength training, walking
Saturday - 3 mile walk, again....

emoticon emoticon emoticon emoticon

  Member Comments About This Blog Post:

DDOORN 8/10/2014 9:59PM

    Keep that Spark Trimmed & Burnin'! :-)


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    I have a mild cold too. My son is really sick with one. I hope we all kick this to the curb quickly!

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LADYRH 8/10/2014 7:03AM


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68ANNE 8/9/2014 11:12PM

    Good thing, it's getting better and you don't seem to be over doing it or rushing

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STEVEN2GO2 8/9/2014 8:32PM

    I had a long summer cold too. Luckily it was in my head and SP says when it is in your head you can still exercise. When it gets in your lungs rest!

Enjoy the new school year!!! emoticon emoticon

Have fun with exercising this week, your plan sounds very doable, love the variety of exercises!

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AQUAGIRL08 8/9/2014 5:26PM

    Good plan! Everything I've read says to ease slowly back into exercise after being sick. You are wise not to overdo it!

Comment edited on: 8/9/2014 5:28:08 PM

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ONEKIDSMOM 8/9/2014 3:08PM

    Health first. Fitness when better. You've got this... and that first workout back? Will be amazing!

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    I'm glad you're feeling better. I know when I feel under the weather working out in the pool sometimes feels pretty good. I try to keep my exercise commitment unless I have a fever.

Good job!

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Fed Up, The Movie, available on DVD in Early September

Friday, August 08, 2014

I was reminded, when I read Mark Bittman this morning (NYTimes food editor), of the forthcoming movie, FED UP, to be released on DVD in early September. Katie Couric is one of the Executive Producers and the film has received good reviews in exposing the incredible amount of sugar in our food supply. This sugar is addictive and it also makes us very sick.

Fed Up asserts that "everything we have been told about food and exercise for the last 30 years is dead wrong" (http://fedupmovie.com/#/page/home).

Processed foods, convenience foods, fast foods, packaged foods, etc. are all about sugar -- and salt, and fat.

The exposure of these facts is becoming more mainstream, thank goodness. Forks Over Knives (available for streaming on Amazon), is about Whole Foods, Plant Based nutrition. So, this is about eating vegan -- but they do not use this term, as it is politically charged, and as one can eat very poorly as a vegan. Like, for example, fruit loops and coke for breakfast, white bread and chips for lunch, nuts, with oils and sugar, and so forth. Special packaged "vegan foods." There are other films and books, as well. King Corn (film) comes to mind and explores food/USDA policy.

We now see the the food industry's response to the gluten free market -- the production of many processed foods - gluten-free -- but with sugar, salt, and fat. Now, there does need to be gluten free products. Surely there are persons with celiac disease and those who are gluten sensitive, but there are others who are legitimately trying to be healthier, and, perhaps, reduce inflammation. In these situations, it may be good to also try cutting out the sugar, salt, fat, (overall, and hidden in processed foods) and see if that makes a difference. IOW, it may not be the gluten that is the bandit.

What is in common here, it seems, is the message that processed foods do nothing for our health - they make us sick. Michael Moss' book, Salt, Sugar, Fat, speaks to this. And then there are the books Michael Pollan has written, speaking to many of the same issues.

My personal experience? Since I have begun to eat Whole Foods, Plant Based, I spend more time in the kitchen, I am more connected to the food I eat, I am getting healthier on so many counts, and I have no cravings. I love the food I eat. I am eating less but spending more time doing it.

  Member Comments About This Blog Post:

ONEKIDSMOM 8/8/2014 7:11PM

    I quip that I'm eating less, enjoying it more... but starting to explore whole foods concept.

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AQUAGIRL08 8/8/2014 5:41PM

    I'm not all that keen on processed foods either. Eating clean is healthier but it requires more prep time. As the "baby boomer generation" ages, I think there is another concern. If you become disabled and are unable to work in the kitchen as much, many people have to rely on frozen meals. The selection of foods that do not have lots of additives is slim. It is a scary thought!

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DDOORN 8/8/2014 4:24PM

    Love Bittman's column and his approach! Hadn't read this one, nor heard of the movie...sounds most EXCELLENT! Thx for the head's up!


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    Thanks for letting us know - I wanted to see it but missed it while it was in the theatre

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    It only makes sense that the more food we eat with single ingredients, the healthier and happier we'll be.

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    I'm not into processed foods too. My goal is to eat less processed foods, transfat, sugar, salt, and gluten and I think it will help me lot.

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