GRANDMABABA's SparkPeople Blog GRANDMABABA's Blog on SparkPeople, home of free diet plans and a healthy living community Good-bye Mom My mom died this evening. It was hard to say good-bye, but I had encouraged her to let go for the past couple of days so the end was not a surprise. I know I will need time to process and mourn and remember, but am glad I was here for her these past six months. I am eager to get home to my husband once this house is ready to hand over to a realtor. I miss him, my friends, my daughter's family so very much. Since I could not leave her at all the past two weeks, it was kind of her to leave... Sun, 5 Apr 2015 00:41:07 EST Challenging 6 Months I came to care for my 100 year old mother in October. She suffers from a collection of painful conditions, blindness, deafness and Alzheimer's. It's been so hard to be away from my husband and also from our daughter's family. I so miss those grandkids. But I did have a few days there in December prior to a Hawaiian trip with my husband while my brother took over here. That was heavenly. I also took a break earlier this month to go home for doctor appointments, meetings and to see friend... Sat, 4 Apr 2015 20:59:57 EST Trip with Grandson We just took a four day trip with our 10 year old grandson. Took him to celebrate his birthday with his cousins. We had such a good time in Seattle. Ate way too much of far too many wrong things, but it was such fun to watch him be so grown up on the airplane, on boats, at fancy restaurants, museums, dancing to video games and helping assemble some very complex Legos. His three requests - Space Needle, beach, ferry - all turned out great. It was such a joy to have him to ourselves. No f... Tue, 21 Oct 2014 12:12:05 EST Day 54 - Countdown to Vacation Ouch! Another bad morning on the scale, but I do think I'm getting back on track. My fear is failure as in a few days I must drive out to care for my 100 year old mom. She really needs full time care and can't afford it. She refused to go into a nursing home. She has always been very selfish so this is not really a surprise. Still it will be hard to be away from my husband indefinitely. I hate leaving my grandkids, too. Bottom line is that our vacation may never happen. Thankfully, I ... Tue, 21 Oct 2014 12:01:07 EST Day 55 - Countdown to Vacation A bit sad today after gaining 2 pounds on trip to visit son's family. We ate out every day, usually twice each day. Had some amazing meals and did a lot of walking. But, walking did not counter all those calories and carbs. Today I'm getting back on track and hoping some of the weight is not actually weight, but bloat. We'll see. I think this will be a great week! Take care everyone! <BR> <em>15</em> <em>311</em> <em>381</em> <em>213</em> Mon, 20 Oct 2014 17:07:28 EST Day 59 of Vacation Countdown It may be 59 days until our tropical get away in December, but in an hour or so we leave to pick up our 10 year old grandson to board a plane for a fun long weekend getaway. I am so excited to have his all to ourselves - no fighting with his big brother or little sister. No getting lost in the middle. It's all about least for the plane trips. We will stay with our son and family. They have two little girls and I know the kids will have fun together. It's been a year since they'... Thu, 16 Oct 2014 13:35:28 EST Day 61 - Countdown to Vacation I walked for quite a long time today as I hunted for gifts for granddaughters and then once home I had to walk back down to find a lightweight travel purse for a short trip this week and a rain coat for grandson we are taking with us to Seattle to help him celebrate his 10th birthday with one of his cousins celebrating her 6th. We are hoping he won't chicken out as the time draws near for us to take him to the airport. It will be fun to have him pretty much to ourselves for awhile. He's th... Tue, 14 Oct 2014 19:35:28 EST Day 62 - Countdown to Vacation Another week has passed and though I think I'm becoming more toned, the weight isn't budging. Perhaps this will be the week I see it drop. Meanwhile, I'm alternating between the gym and the pool. For example, did a rowing 5K Saturday and swam 2000 meters Sunday. Plus, walking and other exercise as well. It feels so good to complete a planned task that is more challenging than the last! <BR> <em>213</em> Mon, 13 Oct 2014 16:46:26 EST Day 69 - Countdown to Vacation Readiness I did very poorly over the past several days. Way too much celebrating of birthdays - parties, cakes, dining out. So, this week i'm back on track and should see more progress soon. I did get to the gym both Saturday and Sunday. Today I'm so tired after almost no sleep last night. Too many sore places right now. Tonight will be better. Then have lots of running around to do and must prepare part of a bbq menu for an evening event. I should be recovered enough to hit the gym somewhere i... Mon, 6 Oct 2014 18:36:57 EST Day 76 - Countdown to Vacation Readiness I was pleased to discover that my weight dropped ever so slightly over the weekend. Still, that beats the alternative. Then today I literally walked around doing various errands for 4 1/2 hours. I was too exhausted to hit the gym, but packed my gear for the next time I'm out and can go there near the beginning of my day. My mom was in the hospital overnight so I was awake a lot with calls back and forth to her, my brother and her care giver and the agency owner who really overstepped her ... Mon, 29 Sep 2014 19:27:42 EST And Day 77 Countdown Begins After reading a countdown blog from another Sparker I decided to add this to my plans. So, this is day 77 before going on vacation that includes lots of beaches, snorkeling. hiking, boating, swimming and sightseeing. I can hardly wait. I've regained some of the weight I worked so hard to lose. But, I'm back in the gym often and walking outdoors a fair amount. Also, using my fitness bands and hand weights at home most days and doing various at home exercises now and then. My hope is to g... Sun, 28 Sep 2014 19:46:29 EST Day 38 - exercise 20 minutes or more each day Today was a pretty awesome exercise day. Although I woke with a cold/sore throat and had been really fatigued as this came on the past couple of days, I went to the gym with my husband and managed to: rowing machine 20 minutes, walk on treadmill 45 minutes, walk on indoor track about a half mile, worked out with 10 lb. kettle bells. Than when we came home we walked to the grocery store for another half mile or more. So, I feel good about the start to this week even though I do feel a bit t... Sun, 28 Sep 2014 19:13:06 EST Day 34 Today I spent part of my 20 minutes of exercise doing couch exercises - couch squats, couch crunches and couch push ups. I then got in some walking to push me to that area. However, the emotional eating beast attacked when I got home from a meeting. I tamed him, sort of. I ate some mixed nuts, dried figs and a serving of Baby Bel Light cheese. So, even though the calories were significant, I also managed to get in some good protein, fiber and fats. The beast was satisfied ... Wed, 24 Sep 2014 19:07:58 EST Day 33 Still on target with daily exercise...some days a lot, some days a little, but everyday something. But, unfortunately I've not been very good on the food side of things since returning form caring for my mother. I ate so clean for more than a month, but now I'm back to the temptations of too much in the house that is not good for me and too much time alone with it and with myself. I must work to schedule myself away from home for more of my days as I do better when I'm with others and not ... Tue, 23 Sep 2014 16:40:06 EST Day 30 Had to amend my streak of 20 minutes per day of exercise when I reviewed my calendar. I hadn't counted all the days that I worked in my mom's garden while I cared for her for three weeks. I worked from 2-6 hours each day so decided to backtrack this streak to the beginning of that stint. Now, it's more focused exercise for me rather the functional stuff I did there. Today it's off to the gym this afternoon with my husband. I walked a bit this morning, too. It is encouraging to look back... Sat, 20 Sep 2014 12:07:02 EST Day 9 I wrote a blog and managed to delete instead of post. Basically, thanks friends for encouraging me along the way. I decided to challenge myself to at least 20 minutes of activity each day. So far it has included a lot of walking including a 4.5 mile charity walk. two trips to the gym, and a swim. Today will be another walk. Tomorrow I'll hit the gym with my husband. I love mixing it up a bit! Have a great weekend everyone! <BR> <em>213</em> Fri, 19 Sep 2014 15:06:10 EST New Gyms! I get a bit claustrophobic and lonely in our little condo gym so we finally joined one that includes all the county facilities. The one closest to us is only four years old and pretty spectacular. The equipment is great, the pools - spectacular. And there are personal trainers if we want to ever go that route. But, the best part is the price. Since we are over 60 we pay a third of what it would be if I was just a little younger. It was lovely to work out there yesterday. May go tonight... Tue, 16 Sep 2014 15:18:43 EST Travel funny! As I was heading to my gate I needed to take the elevator down a flight as i was not comfortable enough in my ortho boot to use the stairs or escalator. A woman just in front of me got on and the door closed. I pressed the button after she left and surprisingly it opened right up with the woman, looking very confused, still in there. I asked if I could help her. She said the airport worker advised her to take the elevator to her gate, but her gate is 12 and there is only 1 and 2 for optio... Fri, 12 Sep 2014 14:34:01 EST Home and Discouraged After caring for 100 year old mom for three weeks I was so pleased to leave her in much better shape than I found her. I was also pleased to have pruned and weeded her 1/3 acre of trees, shrubs, Japanese gardens, roses, etc., etc. I worked on that part 2-4 hours each day so a pretty good workout in the process. Still, had to wear orthopedic boot the whole time as I try to get a tendon to repair itself. But, I stayed longer than planned and couldn't get some meds I usually take each day to... Wed, 10 Sep 2014 21:09:06 EST Confusion...dementia As I encourage Mom in new behaviors I feel a bit like the bad guy. She balks, argues, says what she thinks we want to hear and goes about her merry way. Working with several nurses, physical therapist and low level care giver. Not fun, but necessary. No appetite and can't taste or chew. So thankful for ensure. Her confusion grows. So hoping she can stay at home. We'll see. <BR> Meanwhile I began adding back some more dairy to my own menu. So far so good. <BR> Hope everyone is havi... Wed, 20 Aug 2014 01:18:04 EST Day 14 This is my last day on the elimination plan. So, I can begin adding back items to see what happens. In addition, I want to begin eating more fruits even though they have more sugar of their own. I've missed that the most, I think. The two weeks have gone by pretty quickly and I lost about 6 pounds in the process. I think I could have lost more, but had a tough time keeping up my calorie intake. Will have to adjust carefully as I suspect the body is slightly towards the starvation mode. ... Sun, 17 Aug 2014 13:47:02 EST Day 12 Nearly at the place to begin adding in items to check for sensitivities. However, yesterday I got put in a boot to let a tendon rest and heal. Then, shortly after I got home from that I got a call from my brother telling me I need to get out to our mom's house to help her adjust to some new medications and recommended healthy routines to keep her safe at home. She is 100 and I don't think she will live too much longer. She is so miserable. Every challenging trait has intensified. So, I ... Fri, 15 Aug 2014 16:04:18 EST Day11 After taping and/or ignoring a foot tendon issue for about two months, I finally went to specialist. This foot and Achilles' tendon were rebuilt 16 years ago. A transferred tendon is acting up. So I'm in a boot for the next month to see if it will heal or if I will need to have more surgery. Meanwhile, I'm on Day 11 of this elimination plan. I'm concerned that my activity limits will drive me to give up on this plan too soon. Once the two weeks are over I will begin introducing back eac... Thu, 14 Aug 2014 16:05:56 EST Day 10 of 14 Another day of discovering how challenging it can be to prepare dinner for a spouse who has no interest in the plan I'm following to discern any food sensitivities. He thought I was a bit odd for not wanting the noodles that went into his turkey stroganoff. Still, after this many days he just doesn't argue. I was still a bit low on calories this past 24 hours so am again trying to get to where I ought to be. I doubt I will ever go back to eating large amounts of sugar. I can so appreciat... Wed, 13 Aug 2014 13:00:35 EST Day 9; 2 week elimination plan I finally tried the detox bath recommended on this plan. It is using epsom salts and baking soda. I was supposed to do each day, but it has been so hot. The idea of soaking in a hot tub was a bit too much. Still, I must admit it did feel so good that I suspect I will continue. Otherwise, all is going pretty well. The one struggle I'm having is getting enough calories. I must work at getting them up or it could be problematic for metabolism down the road. Our bodies are so amazing, so ... Tue, 12 Aug 2014 12:46:26 EST Days 6-7-8 of two-week elimination journey I can hardly believe I made it through the weekend without indulging in any of the eliminated foods. With just a week to go, I'm feeling pretty confident. Then I can begin eating some of those banned things to see how I feel. Right now I am feeling better than I have in quite some time. I slept better last night and have more energy today than is usual on a Monday morning. I'm about to head out for a walk up the canyon for probably about two hours. Oh, yes, i even lost 4 pounds this pas... Mon, 11 Aug 2014 12:59:42 EST Day 5 - 2-week plan I now find it difficult to eat all that I ought to eat in a day. However, I also find I am eating more protein than I've been used to. I know I was deficient, so this change has been awesome. The past few days the majority of protein has come from beans and protein powder. It has not been as difficult as I thought it would be to follow this plan while still providing meals my husband will enjoy. He continues to eat things I would not want anyway - he's addicted to sugar-free popsicles, w... Fri, 8 Aug 2014 13:03:52 EST Day 4 - 2 week plan Another successful day. I am starting to feel the benefits of eating so cleanly and eliminating a lot of things. I never drank my veggie broth yesterday and still haven't done the recommended detox bath (too hot), but otherwise am on target. Bloat is falling away. Have struggled with ms issues this summer and am hopeful this plan will positively impact all of that. We'll see. One day, one decision at a time. Life is good! <BR> <em>244</em> <em>521</em> <em>213</em> Thu, 7 Aug 2014 12:43:32 EST Day 3 - of two-week plan So far, so good. I must admit my motivation goes beyond wanting to discover if there are some food sensitivities. It even goes beyond wanting to lose the weight I've gained this past year. I think it is as much as an effort to see if I can actually follow through for the two weeks. The house is still full of sweet and addictive things (5 kinds of cookies, home made almond joy candies, cinnamon rolls, two big bags of chips, etc.) from our providing for fellowship hours on Sunday. With fe... Wed, 6 Aug 2014 14:02:36 EST Day 2: two-week rapid weight loss trial I did pretty well yesterday as I managed to avoid all the things I am supposed to avoid. However, I didn't make the veggie broth I should have made. Will try to get those ingredients today. Also, there is a recommended evening bath with epsom salts and baking soda to help detox which I could not bring myself to do in the middle of summer. Maybe today. The elimination things are what I'm most interested in to see if I can figure out if I have some food sensitivities. I've struggled with ... Tue, 5 Aug 2014 13:00:58 EST Two-week rapid weight loss trial I'm trying to follow Dr. Oz's two-week rapid weight loss plan beginning today. Once before I followed something similar to see if eliminating some of the 'bad' stuff would give me more energy, etc. It did, but I never did figure out what, if any, of the eliminated foods were things I was actually sensitive to. In any case I know this is a healthy way to go and I think I can manage it for the two weeks. Weight loss would be a bonus, but my main goal is to feel better, stronger, sleep bette... Mon, 4 Aug 2014 12:04:52 EST What is wrong with the right? Foot, that is. I had both achilles tendons and feet rebuilt, tendons moved around, all toes fused, achilles tendon split and lengthened many years ago. The right one began acting up about 5-6 weeks ago with some pain that I think is from one of the tendons. Hiking on vacation was fine in my boot, but walking without support became more challenging with time. Sometimes I could hardly stand on it. Other times I could 'walk it off' and do much better. My doctor ordered an x-ray at my physi... Tue, 22 Jul 2014 12:57:58 EST Getting back from everything! We had our three local gks with us four days before leaving the next morning for two weeks of vacation. Got home from vacation to face a week of 19 1st, 2nd, & 3rd graders for vacation Bible school. The gks were great...very busy getting them to all their activities. Vacation was awesome with some highlights being sailing on and hiking around Lake Tahoe, celebrating my mother-in-law's 99th birthday, going with family on a cruise around San Francisco Bay, dinner with dh's brother and sister... Tue, 22 Jul 2014 12:48:37 EST Great week so far... So far, so good. Most everything is in balance. But, tomorrow...look out! I pick up my three local grandkids from tae kwon do and keep four days. The day they leave we get ready to go out of town for two weeks. I have lots of plans for the kids and the older two have some things on their schedule - lots of tkd and water polo. Then, we may take them to the air show, a movie, to one of the local splash pads and out to some fun meals. Just planning to spoil them and send them home. After... Wed, 25 Jun 2014 20:47:32 EST Another Week, Another Chance! Here I go again! I've long ago lost count of how many new beginnings I've declared. But, today I'm thinking that it really doesn't matter. Those of us dealing with chronic issues that cause unexpected, or even anticipated, challenges along our way know that it is never smooth sailing. It's all about starting anew at every opportunity. Some weeks are great, some not so good. I will remember the successes and focus energy on continued clean eating and getting this body in motion as often ... Mon, 23 Jun 2014 13:09:30 EST Favorite iced tea for summer I put this together recently and decided I love it so much that it is my favorite for summer. For 2 quarts I used: <BR> 2 tea bags of Green tea (Matcha, Sencha blend) <BR> 1 tea bag of fennel tea <BR> 1 bag of ginger tea <BR> steep, chill, serve over ice. so yummy! <BR> <em>43</em> <em>464</em> <em>67</em> <em>213</em> Thu, 19 Jun 2014 13:58:27 EST Awaiting progress Reduced salt: check <BR> increased water: check <BR> reduced calories: check <BR> increased activity: check <BR> <BR> reduced weight: NO, ouch! <BR> <BR> Maybe I need to do some body confusion targeted calories for a bit. My body is being very stubborn just now. Perhaps next week will be better. Hope everyone is having a great week! <BR> <em>46</em> <em>213</em> Wed, 18 Jun 2014 14:09:19 EST Yes, no, maybe so! I'm alone most of this week as dh must travel again. So, will work on increasing activity, filling up on clean healthy foods and getting to some writing projects I've been putting off. Plus, there are several friends going through some very tough stuff. I want to visit with each this week. I'll get to see my gks a bit and that is always good. Still, as I think of all the usual time and energy commitments I realize that I must make some choices. When I get stressed I tend to make the eas... Mon, 16 Jun 2014 01:25:51 EST Another concussion! I'm surprised at times that I can think at all. I never played contact sports, but still managed to get 5 concussions, the latest just three weeks ago. The first was in college doing a gymnastics move without a mat....stupid. The second was getting hit by a surfboard in Hawaii. The third was in a car accident after the home health nurse insisted I come to the office for a steroid infusion I was to have gotten at home. She then gave me two attivan tablets and walked me out to my car. I p... Fri, 13 Jun 2014 00:21:45 EST Buckle Down! A new week, same plan...more resolve! Perhaps this will be the week I can actually get rid of some of those winter pounds. I will focus on more water, more walking, less sitting, lots of fresh fruits and veggies and generally eating clean, clean, clean. I know when I've done this in the past the result has been more energy, better sleep, better attitude, and even some weight loss.<BR>GO! <BR> <em>213</em> Mon, 9 Jun 2014 12:31:51 EST More water, less weight...more salt, more weight! It seems so simple, but I decided to try this again to remind myself how much I am affected amounts of salt and water in my diet. I see-sawed more than two pounds in this experiment. It is a good reminder to me just how sensitive my body is to what I put into it. Calories seemed pretty irrelevant in this little test. So, I will keep the salt down for the coming week and may try to do an elimination diet next week to see what food sensitivities I have. Once before I tried this and discove... Thu, 5 Jun 2014 16:58:18 EST That Darn Scale! It happened again. Just when I expected some loss, the scale let me down. I was at the bottom of my calorie range and had been exercising each day. In fact, yesterday I put in over 17,000 steps and did a core workout video, too. But, today I had gone up a bit...ouch. I presume it has to do with exercising out in the heat and not drinking enough water along the way and then snacking on a handful of tortilla chips -- too much salt. So, today I'm focussing on no salt and lots of water. I ... Tue, 3 Jun 2014 12:52:09 EST DH Update and Thanks SP Friends A quick update regarding my DH's melanoma surgery.. All went well. He did have to have two more biopsies and will get those results by the first of next week. If they are o.k. the doc will freeze those places. Then, he is in for a very short chain for the near future with evaluations every three months. Still, so much better than it could have been! Thanks for thoughts, prayers and good wishes. I appreciate all of you so much! <BR> <em>213</em> Tue, 3 Jun 2014 12:45:41 EST DH in surgery As I write this my husband is having some surgery for a melanoma. Doc thinks it got caught early enough that surgery is all he needs. I will be anxious to know how it went and what more is needed. I suspect there will be a bit of extra follow up for awhile. Hopefully, that will be all. God is good. We trust Him to see us through this as He did many years ago during my surgery, radiation and chemo followed by 10 years of oral meds for breast cancer. Thankfully, dh should have a much eas... Fri, 30 May 2014 14:27:51 EST Our last night of this babysitting adventure... With our grandkids for the week, that is. I'm completely exhausted, but our time has flown by with very little drama. At ages 11, 9 and 4 we've been amazed at how easy this week has been. Still, so much more activity than is usual for me. I will be glad to be at home in my own bed tomorrow night. I dread getting on the scale as I suspect the numbers will not be pleasing. Still, I have managed more exercise along this journey. Now, we are scheduled to have these three at our house next ... Sat, 24 May 2014 00:43:18 EST This headache just won't quit! Some days are such a challenge. I have several migraine triggers and some are pretty hard to avoid. Bright light and loud noise are two things I do try to avoid. But, I'll be babysitting three young grandkids for the next week while their parents go to Hawaii. As much as I adore these kids, I know my head will not cooperate. It rarely does. I have found that being extra careful to stay well hydrated helps. And deep breathing and stretching help. After that it's off to ice packs and me... Fri, 16 May 2014 16:47:10 EST A little change that can mean a lot! How do you talk to yourself? I suspect many of you do what I do and it is not a good thing for our health, mental or otherwise! I talk to myself in ways I would never talk to a friend, or enemy for that matter. "You blew it that time." You'll never be successful!" "You are a failure," You are fat!" "You disgust me." "You are lazy." "You are useless.", etc., etc.! Wow! This cannot be good in any way. So, today I'm starting to pay more attention to this and make changes. I am turni... Wed, 14 May 2014 13:09:22 EST Energy Crisis I'm stuck. No energy and not much strength for more than a month now. The ms exacerbation makes every task a huge effort. We had a fun, but busy, weekend during which I got in lots of steps and have been paying for that ever since. Still, I believe that pushing is a good thing. Though yesterday and today have been way to sedentary for my liking, I know I will get going again soon. Meanwhile, I can at least eat well, read encouraging words, and walk from room to room here. Hoping tomorr... Tue, 13 May 2014 14:12:10 EST Reset? I just reset some of my options to read again encouraging stories and helpful advice. I've reset before, but this time it feels like I'm resetting me! New me? Perhaps. I am beginning this reset at a bit lower weight and a bit stronger than the last time. So, though I'm not where I hope to be, I'm much better than where I was. I hope all of us are healthier in every way. Moving in the RighT direction with RespecT, letting go of RegreT, is a great way for us to ReseT! Have... Tue, 29 Apr 2014 12:16:25 EST Spring Fever I just returned from a spectacular walk through an amazing display of spring blooms. Every color of the rainbow merged with those delightful perfumes to awaken all my senses. In fact, it was such a beautiful experience I think I'll get a few things done here and head out again...perhaps a slightly different route. I love the sights, sounds, scents and feel of springtime. Dh enjoys it, too, as long as he pre-medicates...sniffle, sniffle, sneeze! Happy springtime! <em>126</em> <em>87<... Tue, 15 Apr 2014 17:12:29 EST