CMRAND54's SparkPeople Blog http://www.sparkpeople.com/mypage_public_journal.asp?id=CMRAND54 CMRAND54's Blog on SparkPeople, home of free diet plans and a healthy living community SparkPeople.com http://assets2.sparkpeople.com/assets/nav/logo_spark.gif http://www.sparkpeople.com/ Christmas Newsletter 2013 http://www.sparkpeople.com/mypage_public_journal_individual.asp?blog_id=5556819 I didn’t send a Christmas newsletter this year. What was I going to say? Tom and I and the kids are fine, but it was a rough year for Dads? <BR> <BR> My father died on March 1st, at the age of 99, and Tom’s father died on October 10th, at 90. <BR> <BR> One of my father’s long ambitions was to live to be 100. When I saw him last January he said, “I was born in 1913 and this year is 2013, so I lived to be 100.” When I reminded him that his birthday was the last day of the year, so he had a li... Wed, 4 Dec 2013 12:50:34 EST Earth Day http://www.sparkpeople.com/mypage_public_journal_individual.asp?blog_id=5332816 I meant to post this yesterday, cut didn't get around to it. What are you doing to fight climate change? <BR> <BR> Today is Earth Day. The theme this year is climate change. <BR> <BR> It’s pretty obvious that the climate of the earth is changing – we are experiencing more violent storms and higher average temperatures, the oceans are warmer and the polar ice is melting. <BR> <BR> I believe that human activities are causing, or accelerating, this change. The climate on earth has changed bef... Tue, 23 Apr 2013 10:46:36 EST Spinning http://www.sparkpeople.com/mypage_public_journal_individual.asp?blog_id=5240726 I wanted to do cycle spin classes for a long time, but I was afraid they would be too difficult for me. I finally got up my nerve and started last summer. Now I just love it. Cycle spin is a terrific workout, I really sweat like crazy, and my heart rate goes up nicely. At the same time, it’s easy on the joints. My butt hurt for the first four sessions, even with the padded bike shorts, but after that it quit bothering me. There are all ages, sizes and shapes of people doing cycle spin. Don’t... Wed, 6 Feb 2013 20:40:59 EST Aim High http://www.sparkpeople.com/mypage_public_journal_individual.asp?blog_id=5220474 We all have up days and down days. Some days we eat good foods in sensible amounts. Other days we fill up on junk. Some days we have fun exercising. Other days we sit on our butts and do nothing. This doesn't mean we are doomed to failure. If today goes badly, try again tomorrow. Don't give up if you are not perfect. Aim high and see what happens. <BR> <BR> The following poem is so hopeful. I love it. <BR> <BR> <BR> Sometimes <BR> <BR> Sometimes things don’t go, after all, <BR> from bad ... Wed, 23 Jan 2013 17:13:06 EST A Poem for the New Congress http://www.sparkpeople.com/mypage_public_journal_individual.asp?blog_id=5216080 The NRA is selling fear: Buy a gun because “they” are coming to get you and a gun will protect you. Only a gun does not protect you. You are more likely to die or be injured from gun violence if you own a gun than if you don’t. <BR> <BR> The following poem is one I’ve loved for a long time. <BR> <BR> “True believers in liberty, and also security” seems like an apt thought for the times. <BR> <BR> Fix <BR> <BR> The puzzled ones, the Americans, go through their lives <BR> Buying what t... Sun, 20 Jan 2013 20:40:19 EST On the Death of a Child http://www.sparkpeople.com/mypage_public_journal_individual.asp?blog_id=5168251 The death of any child is a tragedy. The death of 20 children because a disturbed young man had easy access to an assault rifle is beyond understanding. <BR> <BR> I’m sharing a poem today that has always made me cry: <BR> <BR> <BR> Rispetti: On the Death of a Child <BR> <BR> I thought I heard a knock on the door, <BR> And I jumped up as if you were here again, <BR> Speaking to me, as you so often did, <BR> In a coaxing tone; “Daddy, may I come in?” <BR> <BR> When at eventide I walked alo... Sun, 16 Dec 2012 16:37:25 EST Row, Row, Row Your Boat http://www.sparkpeople.com/mypage_public_journal_individual.asp?blog_id=5160476 I recently volunteered to help at my local county recreation center in an Adapted Aquatics class for people with Multiple Sclerosis. We work in the shallow end of the pool doing strength and range of motion exercises with a number of students. There is an instructor and one or two volunteers for each student. On Friday another volunteer and I worked with a lovely lady who arrived for class in a wheel chair. We moved her into a waterproof chair and down the ramp into the pool, where she floate... Sat, 8 Dec 2012 20:25:51 EST Roasted Butternut Squash http://www.sparkpeople.com/mypage_public_journal_individual.asp?blog_id=4599230 A couple of people asked for my recipe for roasted pear and butternut squash with walnuts, so I am sharing it here. <BR> <BR> 1 butternut squash, peeled, seeded and cubed (1 inch cubes) <BR> 3 firm pears, cored and cubed <BR> 1/4 cup walnut pieces <BR> 2 tablespoons olive oil <BR> salt and pepper to taste <BR> 2 teaspoons of sugar (optional) <BR> 1/2 teaspoon of cinnamon (optional) <BR> <BR> Combine cubed squash, pears, walnuts and olive oil. <BR> Spread mixture in a single layer on a sheet... Fri, 25 Nov 2011 18:47:03 EST Don't Forget to be Happy http://www.sparkpeople.com/mypage_public_journal_individual.asp?blog_id=4325659 I just responded to a post on one of my teams. The team leader was asking what we did to stay positive. I liked my answer well enough to share it as a blog. <BR> <BR> My Dad is my role model for a positive attitude. <BR> <BR> He was born in 1913. <BR> <BR> He remembers the great flu epidemic of 1918. The whole family got sick, but they all survived. <BR> <BR> His older brother drowned in the Mississippi River when my Dad was about 16. Because the family was poor, my Dad had to drop out o... Mon, 27 Jun 2011 11:30:56 EST Two Friends Met for Lunch http://www.sparkpeople.com/mypage_public_journal_individual.asp?blog_id=4304834 Two friends met at a diner for gossip and lunch. I’m calling the thin friend Bitsy and the ample friend Betsy. <BR> <BR> Bitsy barely glanced at the menu and set it aside. She knew what she wanted. Betsy studied the menu avidly, looking at all the options, and wondered what she should eat. She was on a diet, as she always was. <BR> <BR> The waitress came and Bitsy ordered a cheeseburger with lettuce and tomato, fries and a coke. Betsy sighed and ordered a chef salad with (after some hesitat... Fri, 17 Jun 2011 11:41:57 EST Pick One. Get Moving. http://www.sparkpeople.com/mypage_public_journal_individual.asp?blog_id=4272188 Adapted Aquatics <BR> Bowling <BR> Circuit Training <BR> Dancing <BR> Elliptical <BR> Free Weights <BR> Gardening <BR> Hiking <BR> Inclined Treadmill <BR> Jump Rope <BR> Kick Boxing <BR> Lacrosse <BR> Miniature Golf <BR> Nautilus <BR> Off Road Biking <BR> Pilates <BR> Quoits <BR> Rowing <BR> Swimming <BR> Tennis <BR> Ultimate Challenge <BR> Volley Ball <BR> Wii Fit <BR> X-treme Fitness <BR> Yoga <BR> Zumba <BR> <BR> Come up with a list of your own. <BR> <BR> <BR> <BR> And if you happen to... Thu, 2 Jun 2011 10:20:49 EST April is National Poetry Month, Part 4 http://www.sparkpeople.com/mypage_public_journal_individual.asp?blog_id=4180151 In the Washington DC area, politics is local news. Just as Iowans follow hog futures, the folks here in Northern Virginia pay attention to what’s going on in Congress. The big news recently was the budget fight and the possible shut down of the Federal Government. Congress seems to have forgotten that they are there to run the country, not just to get reelected. <BR> <BR> The following poem by Alicia Suskin Ostriker was published in 2005 and still seems relevant. I heard it one morning on t... Wed, 20 Apr 2011 20:29:17 EST April is National Poetry Month, Part 3 http://www.sparkpeople.com/mypage_public_journal_individual.asp?blog_id=4171957 Sometimes poetry is just fun, like the following poem that my daughter brought to my attention a couple of years ago. <BR> <BR> I like this poem, too, because it reminds me that opportunity doesn’t always look like opportunity. We should be open to what the Universe brings us and not flush it down the drain because we are afraid, or even sadder, because we don’t feel worthy. <BR> <BR> <BR> Hazel Tells LaVerne <BR> <BR> last night <BR> im cleanin out my <BR> howard johnsons ladies room <BR... Sun, 17 Apr 2011 14:31:09 EST April is National Poetry Month, Part 2 http://www.sparkpeople.com/mypage_public_journal_individual.asp?blog_id=4168703 My dear Spark Friend VALERIEMAHA shared this wonderful poem with me and suggested I pass it along for National Poetry month, something I am delighted to do. <BR> Read and enjoy. <BR> <BR> By Ted Hughes <BR> <BR> Because it is occasionally possible, just for brief moments, <BR> to find the words that will unlock the doors of all those many mansions inside <BR> the head and express something - perhaps not much, just something - of the crush of <BR> information that presses in on us from th... Fri, 15 Apr 2011 21:13:13 EST April is National Poetry Month http://www.sparkpeople.com/mypage_public_journal_individual.asp?blog_id=4153863 April is National Poetry Month, so I am sharing the following poem by Edna St Vincent Millay. Just read it, and make of it what you will. <BR> <BR> <BR> Edna St Vincent Millay <BR> Spring <BR> <BR> To what purpose April, do you return again? <BR> Beauty is not enough. <BR> You can no longer quiet me with the redness <BR> Of little leaves opening stickily. <BR> I know what I know. <BR> The sun is hot on my neck as I observe <BR> The spikes of the crocus. <BR> The smell of the earth is good.... Sat, 9 Apr 2011 14:39:59 EST changing everything carefully http://www.sparkpeople.com/mypage_public_journal_individual.asp?blog_id=4121419 We had snow here last night, but by noon it was all melted. When I spoke to my Dad this morning I told him about the snow and he said “It’s kind of late in March for snow.” I am delighted that at 97 he is still oriented enough to know that. <BR> <BR> The following poem speaks of “changing everything carefully.” For the last year and a half that’s what I’ve been doing – changing everything carefully – not all at once, not big changes, but real changes. <BR> <BR> This is one of my favorite p... Sun, 27 Mar 2011 12:32:10 EST What Do I Want to Be? http://www.sparkpeople.com/mypage_public_journal_individual.asp?blog_id=4096395 When I was young, I wanted to be an architect, an actuary, or a physical therapist. I was actually accepted into a graduate program in physical therapy, but I met my husband and got married instead. I have never regretted that decision, but it did change my life. I started working for the Federal Government in 1973, and except for a few years off when my children were born and we lived in Bermuda, I have worked there ever since. My job is interesting, challenging, sensitive, and well paid. I ... Wed, 16 Mar 2011 15:07:07 EST Everything Round is Good http://www.sparkpeople.com/mypage_public_journal_individual.asp?blog_id=4034794 I never hated my body, even when I weighed 70 pounds more than I weigh now. I was disappointed that my body was breaking down, health-wise, with the high blood sugar, cholesterol, blood pressure. I was bummed out when walking up a flight of stairs left me winded. But I never hated myself for being that way. My body was still capable of some wonderful things and I appreciated it. Oddly enough, I think that self appreciation actually helped me in my weight loss. Once I made up my mind to be hea... Mon, 21 Feb 2011 10:26:35 EST Try as Hard as You Can Every Moment You're Given http://www.sparkpeople.com/mypage_public_journal_individual.asp?blog_id=3863158 I got three books of poetry for my birthday this year, so I decided to share a poem from each one of them to help me get started blogging again. This poem is from a book my son gave me called The Poets Laureate Anthology, which was developed in association with the Library of Congress. My son works at the Library of Congress, and he knows I love poetry, so it was a good choice. In days to come I will pick a poem from each of the books my sister gave me. <BR> <BR> I opened my new book at rand... Sun, 26 Dec 2010 15:31:01 EST Possibilities http://www.sparkpeople.com/mypage_public_journal_individual.asp?blog_id=3783365 I did strength training at the gym yesterday. At the end of my session, the Fit Linx system said I'd lifted 12, 650 pounds. How did I do that? If you put a box weighing 12, 650 pounds on the ground in front of me there is no way I could lift it. <BR> <BR> On the chest press, I lift 20 pounds at a time. On the leg press I lift 95 pounds. I do 10 machines, 2 sets on each machine, 10 to 15 repetitions in each set. So I lifted that weight 20 to 95 pounds at a time. In other words, I take it one... Sun, 14 Nov 2010 15:49:00 EST Autumn Fires http://www.sparkpeople.com/mypage_public_journal_individual.asp?blog_id=3752152 Does anyone still burn leaves in the fall? <BR> <BR> When I was a kid my Dad raked leaves into bushel baskets (remember those?) and piled them at the end of the driveway, away from the house and the garage. Then he set fire to them and carefully tended them until they were burned to ashes. <BR> <BR> All this became illegal at some point because of the pollution, but I remember the whole process fondly. Burning leaves smelled wonderful in the crisp autumn air. Us kids danced around in the dr... Sun, 31 Oct 2010 16:15:38 EST Soft October Nights http://www.sparkpeople.com/mypage_public_journal_individual.asp?blog_id=3734710 I haven't been blogging much recently. I've been busy with work and other things, staying the course and generally enjoying life. But I wanted to share the following bit of poetry before October is over. It's from "The Love Song of J. Alfred Prufrock" by T. S. Eliot. This has been a favorite poem of mine since I was in my teens. I could write pages about this poem, and some day I might, but today I'm just going to share one little image from it. The poem is available on the internet if you wa... Sat, 23 Oct 2010 10:04:14 EST A Peaceful Start to My Evening http://www.sparkpeople.com/mypage_public_journal_individual.asp?blog_id=3678127 I felt really good in my yoga class tonight. My mind felt still for a change, and I didn't think about work even once. <BR> <BR> Then on the way home, I saw the sun set - just ribbons of color between the trees and under the clouds - and decided to share the following Emily Dickinson poem. <BR> <BR> <BR> <BR> I’ll tell you how the sun rose,-- <BR> A ribbon at a time <BR> The steeples swam in amethyst, <BR> The news like squirrels ran. <BR> <BR> The hills untied their bonnets, <BR> The bo... Tue, 28 Sep 2010 22:01:40 EST Moon http://www.sparkpeople.com/mypage_public_journal_individual.asp?blog_id=3666304 The moon was full last night and it made me think of a poem by Billy Collins. <BR> I love this poem because it reminds me to view the universe with the delight of a small child. <BR> <BR> Moon <BR> <BR> The moon is full tonight <BR> an illustration for sheet music, <BR> an image in Matthew Arnold <BR> glimmering on the English Channel, <BR> or a ghost over a smoldering battlefield <BR> in one of the history plays. <BR> <BR> It’s as full as it was <BR> in that poem by Coleridge <BR> where ... Thu, 23 Sep 2010 22:24:24 EST Gimme Some Fruit http://www.sparkpeople.com/mypage_public_journal_individual.asp?blog_id=3621319 I have really grown to like fruit this past spring and summer. I used to eat the occasional banana. Sometimes I drank orange juice or spooned in some applesauce. Now I eat 3 or 4 servings of fruit a day. I love peaches and blueberries on top of cereal or waffles for breakfast. I love cantaloupe melon for dinner as an appetizer. I snack on strawberries with yogurt. This fall I’ll be looking for fresh apples, pears and citrus. <BR> <BR> Fruit gives you vitamins, minerals, fiber and sweetness... Thu, 9 Sep 2010 09:38:22 EST A Poem for Labor Day http://www.sparkpeople.com/mypage_public_journal_individual.asp?blog_id=3607093 My father always said God gave us work to keep us out of trouble. I think he was right. <BR> <BR> All of us on Spark People work. <BR> Some of us herd cows. <BR> Some of us raise horses. <BR> Some of us are librarians, some teachers. <BR> Some of us are medical providers. <BR> Some of us are website designers. <BR> Some of us are tax collectors. <BR> Some of us work taking care of small children, or elderly parents. <BR> Some of us mow lawns or plant flowers. <BR> Most of us clean house, do... Sat, 4 Sep 2010 17:37:59 EST If the locomotive of the Lord runs us down... http://www.sparkpeople.com/mypage_public_journal_individual.asp?blog_id=3552231 Today I am sharing an amazing poem I discovered a couple of years ago. It was written by a twentieth century American poet, Jack Gilbert. I was first attracted to this poem by the scene at the end of standing in a boat in a dark harbor, listening to the sound of oars. Being on the water at night is so beautiful and peaceful. <BR> <BR> The poet seems to be saying that in spite of all the sorrow and suffering in the world, there is also beauty and laughter, and we should enjoy them. <BR> <BR>... Thu, 19 Aug 2010 00:17:02 EST Sex, Drugs and Rock 'N Roll http://www.sparkpeople.com/mypage_public_journal_individual.asp?blog_id=3459972 I joined a Spark Team recently called "Old Hippies Losin' It." I love the name, and having survived the 60's and 70's, I felt qualified. <BR> <BR> I wore bell-bottomed pants and love beads. <BR> <BR> Jane Fonda spoke at my University in protest of the Viet Nam War. <BR> <BR> I attended a Janis Joplin concert. <BR> <BR> So, in honor of my new team I am sharing the following poem by Denise Duhamel. She writes a lot of cool poetry. <BR> <BR> Hippie Barbie <BR> <BR> Barbie couldn't grasp... Thu, 22 Jul 2010 21:57:10 EST Do You Mind? http://www.sparkpeople.com/mypage_public_journal_individual.asp?blog_id=3418052 I had yoga class again on Tuesday. Yogi Clare couldn't be there, but we had a lovely Asian lady named JK to lead us. I am beginning to get just a glimmer of insight into what yoga may be about. Those of you who do yoga regularly can let me know if I'm on the right track. <BR> <BR> Yoga is not just about twisting your body into weird shapes. It is more about being mindful of your body and movement, even the movement of your breath. We spent several minutes lying on the floor focusing on our ... Sat, 10 Jul 2010 16:24:04 EST Yoga Class http://www.sparkpeople.com/mypage_public_journal_individual.asp?blog_id=3390855 I went to my first yoga class this week, and thought I would share it with you all. <BR> <BR> Our instructor is Yogi Clare, who looks like a little round Buddha. She has a round knot of gray hair on top of her head, round cheeks, and a round belly. I was chastised early on for talking too loudly to my neighbor. Apparently one is supposed to whisper during yoga, or better yet be calmly silent. Asking me to be silent is like asking me to touch my toes, but with practice I hope to be able to do... Thu, 1 Jul 2010 21:10:30 EST Pork Fat http://www.sparkpeople.com/mypage_public_journal_individual.asp?blog_id=3330284 I grew up in Iowa, and they are the pork capital of the country. That’s what they do with all that corn – feed it to the hogs. My father is German, and the Germans must eat a lot of pork, too, because my father loves it. Pickled pig’s feet were always a favorite. All kinds of sausage, pork chops, ham and bacon showed up on the menu at home. <BR> <BR> I bought fresh green beans at the farmer’s market yesterday and the first thing I thought of doing with them was to make my father’s green bean... Sun, 13 Jun 2010 17:35:11 EST There's No Crying in Baseball http://www.sparkpeople.com/mypage_public_journal_individual.asp?blog_id=3307207 One of my favorite movies is a film called “A League of Their Own”. Madonna was in it, and Rosie O’Donnell. Tom Hanks played the alcoholic coach of a girl’s baseball team. The most famous line in the movie is “There’s no crying in baseball” but I liked another line better. <BR> <BR> One of Hanks’ best players is quitting the team. She tells him, “It just got too hard”, and he tells her off, saying something like, “Of course it’s hard. If it were easy, everyone would do it. That’s why it’s go... Sun, 6 Jun 2010 20:36:02 EST A Poem for Memorial Day http://www.sparkpeople.com/mypage_public_journal_individual.asp?blog_id=3284955 by Edward Arlington Robinson <BR> <BR> The Dark Hills <BR> <BR> Dark hills at evening in the west, <BR> Where sunset hovers like a sound <BR> Of golden horns that sang to rest <BR> Old bones of warriors under ground. <BR> For now from all the bannered ways <BR> Where flash the legions of the sun, <BR> You fade—as if the last of days <BR> Were fading, and all wars were done. <BR> <BR> Mon, 31 May 2010 12:29:59 EST Circuit Training With Ashton Kutcher http://www.sparkpeople.com/mypage_public_journal_individual.asp?blog_id=3268095 Today I went to the County Recreation Fitness Center to learn to use the strength training machines. These Recreation Centers are wonderful places. The one closest to my home is only 3 miles away, and has an Olympic sized pool, classrooms, racquet ball courts, and a fitness room full of treadmills, stair climbers, elliptical machines, and a bunch of intimidating weight machines. <BR> <BR> After buying a fitness pass I was able to make an appointment with a trainer (at no charge) to walk me t... Tue, 25 May 2010 21:33:23 EST Thump Thump.......Thump Thump http://www.sparkpeople.com/mypage_public_journal_individual.asp?blog_id=3257593 I saw the doctor yesterday and had good news on several fronts. <BR> <BR> My leg is much better. Keeping it elevated and wearing the compression stockings for a few days did the trick. <BR> <BR> I think that leg is just going to swell sometimes, weight loss or not, and the swelling can lead to cellulitis. When I was in high school I injured that ankle and it's not been quite right since. My mother was giving me a ride to the bus stop, and we were arguing. (I don't remember what about, but ... Sat, 22 May 2010 19:19:54 EST It's Not Supposed to Be That Way http://www.sparkpeople.com/mypage_public_journal_individual.asp?blog_id=3227009 About a year ago I got an infection in my right leg, over the shin. The doctor called it cellulitis, and treated it with antibiotics. It went away, but came back again, more than once. My doctor sent me to a vascular specialist who said the veins in my right leg were insufficient and that I needed to wear compression stockings and elevate the foot of my bed on blocks to keep my legs above my heart at night. I asked him how long I needed to do that and he said, “Until you’ve lost 50 pounds.” W... Thu, 13 May 2010 18:34:05 EST Small Things http://www.sparkpeople.com/mypage_public_journal_individual.asp?blog_id=3208907 Have any of you read the series of books about The No. 1 Ladies' Detective Agency by Alexander McCall Smith? If you haven't, you should, because they are really lovely stories, and there is a lot of wisdom in them. I think it was HBO that made them into a television series. My kids got it for me for Christmas because I'd read and loved the books, and the series was very well done. <BR> <BR> I copied a quote from one of the books and I'm including it here because I found it inspirational. I l... Sat, 8 May 2010 19:45:53 EST Being Boring http://www.sparkpeople.com/mypage_public_journal_individual.asp?blog_id=3156886 I wanted to blog today because it's been more than a week since I had anything to say, but I still don't have anything in particular to talk about. I had a rough week at work, but I can't really talk about it. I'm sticking to my food tracking and exercise routine. I need to up my exercise, but I'm not quite ready. I bought new jeans in a size 12, and that was kind of exciting. <BR> <BR> Then I found the perfect poem for the way I feel today: <BR> <BR> Wendy Cope <BR> Being Boring <BR> <BR... Sat, 24 Apr 2010 20:54:10 EST Let Nothing Disturb Thee http://www.sparkpeople.com/mypage_public_journal_individual.asp?blog_id=3124426 I didn't post my weight last week because I hadn't lost anything. No gain, just no loss. So yesterday morning I woke up feeling, well, thinner, and decided to weigh myself. I stepped on the scale and "Yikes" I'd gained 5 pounds. It couldn't be. I was meeting my calorie goals. I was minimizing the off track eating. I was sticking to my exercise routine. I went to the bathroom, took a shower, and went back to the scale wearing nothing at all. The scale now said I'd gained 6 pounds! Have you eve... Thu, 15 Apr 2010 21:08:22 EST April Rain http://www.sparkpeople.com/mypage_public_journal_individual.asp?blog_id=3106508 I read somewhere that a writer should never start a novel or short story with the weather, but sometimes the weather is so absolutely perfect you can't start with anything else. <BR> <BR> I was going to do the treadmill today, but after going outside I decided to enjoy the gorgeous spring sunshine by working in the yard. An hour of trimming, weeding and raking left me sweaty, but feeling great. I had almost given up yard work the last couple of summers because I just didn't have the energy f... Sun, 11 Apr 2010 16:11:30 EST Cherry Trees http://www.sparkpeople.com/mypage_public_journal_individual.asp?blog_id=3070950 The cherry trees are blooming and spring is finally here for real. Life is too short not to get outside and enjoy the spring flowers. <BR> <BR> The following poem is one I've enjoyed since I was a child. <BR> <BR> Loveliest of trees, the cherry now <BR> Is hung with bloom along the bough, <BR> And stands about the woodland ride <BR> Wearing white for Eastertide. <BR> <BR> Now, of my threescore years and ten, <BR> Twenty will not come again, <BR> And take from seventy springs a score, <BR>... Thu, 1 Apr 2010 21:38:36 EST Shoes http://www.sparkpeople.com/mypage_public_journal_individual.asp?blog_id=3031418 When I was a kid, I never had more than two pairs of shoes at a time. One pair was patent leather Mary Jane's that I wore to church. They were always bought at least a size too big so that I wouldn't outgrow them too soon. My other shoes were grey or brown lace up oxfords, really ugly, but practical. They were bought a half size too big, and I wore them every where but church, winter and summer. My mother did not believe in sneakers or sandals because they didn't give the feet enough support.... Mon, 22 Mar 2010 21:20:11 EST Dance Like a Wave of the Sea http://www.sparkpeople.com/mypage_public_journal_individual.asp?blog_id=3013159 Here is a poem for St. Patrick's Day by William Butler Yeats. This poem just makes me happy. I hope it does the same for you. <BR> <BR> THE FIDDLER OF DOONEY <BR> <BR> When I play on my fiddle in Dooney, <BR> Folk dance like a wave of the sea; <BR> My cousin is priest in Kilvarnet, <BR> My brother in Mocharabuiee. <BR> <BR> I passed my brother and cousin: <BR> They read in their books of prayer; <BR> I read in my book of songs <BR> I bought at the Sligo fair. <BR> <BR> When we come at the... Wed, 17 Mar 2010 22:30:54 EST So what do I eat now? http://www.sparkpeople.com/mypage_public_journal_individual.asp?blog_id=2992702 I have three separate food issues that complicate my diet. <BR> <BR> First, I am gluten intolerant. This means that I cannot eat anything containing wheat, rye, oats or barley. “Modified food starch” is out. So is malt, usually made from barley. Oats are out, not because oats contain gluten, but because they are so often processed in plants that also process wheat, so are contaminated with gluten. I can’t eat bread, pancakes, donuts, bagels, pasta, or any number of other tasty foods. <BR> ... Fri, 12 Mar 2010 18:47:29 EST Happy Numbers http://www.sparkpeople.com/mypage_public_journal_individual.asp?blog_id=2959836 I had a very happy visit at the doctor’s office this morning, reviewing my latest lab results. <BR> <BR> Glucose: 116, down from 151 a year ago <BR> A1c: 5.8, down from 7.7 <BR> My diabetes is much more controlled. <BR> <BR> SGOT: 26, down from 66 <BR> SGTP: 25, down from 60 <BR> My fatty liver disease is gone. <BR> <BR> Total cholesterol: 131, down from 180 <BR> LDL: 66, down from 102 <BR> HDL: 42, down from 46 (this is the good stuff) The doctor says heredity has a lot to do with this nu... Thu, 4 Mar 2010 21:37:49 EST Small Victories http://www.sparkpeople.com/mypage_public_journal_individual.asp?blog_id=2932469 Life is full of small victories. I lost 4 pounds in February, a pound a week, which is my goal. I lost 1 inch off my waist and 1 inch off my hips, so that was another small cause for celebration. <BR> <BR> Next, I had an appointment at the doctor’s office this morning to have blood drawn. My doctor keeps a close eye on my blood sugar, cholesterol, liver and kidney functions and other measures, so I go in every 4 months or so to get blood drawn for lab work. I won’t get the results until nex... Fri, 26 Feb 2010 19:16:45 EST I Never Saw a Purple Cow http://www.sparkpeople.com/mypage_public_journal_individual.asp?blog_id=2910755 Thinking back on my previous diet sins, one of the biggest was a lack of color. I mostly ate white, beige or brown foods, with the occasional yellow. Those colors are fine for decorating your house, but not so good on your plate. <BR> <BR> I ate potatoes, rice, bananas, beef, pork, chicken, eggs, bread, chocolate, milk, cheese, and butter. Not much color there! So I am making a real effort to get more colorful foods into my diet. I'm going for baby spinach rather than iceberg lettuce. I'm c... Sun, 21 Feb 2010 21:28:56 EST It's Not for Sale http://www.sparkpeople.com/mypage_public_journal_individual.asp?blog_id=2878018 I wanted to go to the mall today. I've been cooped up in the house for more than a week. My consumer confidence was feeling really healthy and I felt it was my patriotic duty to boost the economy by spending money. We got down the drive way without much trouble, then got stuck in the road. And I mean stuck. Not going anywhere. The road was a mess of slush with ice underneath and that car wasn't moving. Another car finally came up the road towards us and stopped. The driver helpfully got out t... Sat, 13 Feb 2010 16:54:10 EST Sometimes http://www.sparkpeople.com/mypage_public_journal_individual.asp?blog_id=2871853 I woke up this morning feeling thinner, but the scale said I’d gained more than a pound this past week. That can’t be right. I watched my food all week, and I got plenty of exercise over the weekend. Oh well. Sometimes the scale is like that. <BR> <BR> The Federal government was closed again today in D.C. because of the snow, but I worked again from home. At least half my employees were also working from home. We all have laptops with special encryption capabilities and access cards so that ... Thu, 11 Feb 2010 21:13:16 EST What Seemed a Good Idea http://www.sparkpeople.com/mypage_public_journal_individual.asp?blog_id=2862104 Some times I eat and I don't know why - maybe just because the food is there. I get up to let the cat out and stop by the pantry on the way back to grab a couple of pecans. No rhyme or reason. It just seems like a good idea at the time. (The difference is that now I stop at 2 pecan halves instead of 2 handfuls.) But a whole day of unmindful eating can lead to big-time regret. <BR> <BR> I found the following poem by Connie Bensley in my collection and decided to share it for all of us who ev... Tue, 9 Feb 2010 16:28:40 EST