IRONBESS's SparkPeople Blog IRONBESS's Blog on SparkPeople, home of free diet plans and a healthy living community A beautiful May Day I've been busy lately getting the much neglected garden area ready. We had two beautiful days and have two more in the forecast so I'll plant cool-weather things like greens, sugar pod peas, beets, etc. It's still a little cold for tomatoes and beans. This year's the first time I've started tomatoes from seed and am pleased they're doing well. Every morning I greet them with, "Hello my beauties, you look fantastic!" then affectionately, gently brush their leaves a few times with my hands. ... Thu, 1 May 2014 23:11:53 EST It's April already Can't believe it. Ohhhh, there's never enough time to accomplish all the things I want to do or need to when the weather gets tolerable (things like stain the decks, a biennial project) and still take time for fun. Unfortunately for the house and decks, fun is a priority. <BR> <BR> A busy Spring ahead. I want to plant the garden this year. Need to pull a few weeds and add some amendments since it's been sitting a couple years. Raked off the pine needles and moss yesterday. I'll be working a... Tue, 1 Apr 2014 23:46:47 EST Back on track, I hope Okay, I slacked off this winter but I'm back. Hope I can stick to it. One day at a time. Made little goals today. Took my old puppy dog girl for a slow walk in the woods. It's as good for her spirit as it is for mine. I can tell sometimes her arthritis is hurting her by the way she holds her ears and walks a little slower, but she still wants to go, and when she gets to sniff new territory the transformation begins. Her ears perk up, her nose sniffs the air and the ground, and her limp improv... Sat, 22 Mar 2014 00:15:23 EST Bye Bye Winter Winter always does me in. I don't like it. I can't do winter sports anymore, and any weight I lose comes back then. I do some indoor things like Wii Fit and other vids, but obviously not enough and spend too many hours crocheting. Wanna be outside! It's been great to go for walks the past few days and not freeze my patootie. <BR> <em>211</em> <BR> <BR> R and I are seriously thinking about selling everything and buying a camper van. Then we could be somewhere else in wintertime. We trav... Wed, 19 Mar 2014 21:30:29 EST Photo I took of giant sunspot Sunspot AR1944 is reported to be the biggest in years. I took this from our house yesterday using a classic Meade ETX with front end coated glass solar filter and my husband's Nikon DSLR attached with a camera adapter so the telescope becomes a lens. It was windy, and the scope was not on a stable mount so not as sharp an image as it could have been. Still not too bad for a quick setup. No second chance today. It was cloudy and now it's snowing. Glad I got to see this big boy. <BR> <img src... Tue, 7 Jan 2014 20:12:05 EST Falling off the healthy lifestyle wagon... I've fallen off the wagon since returning from vacation. I was so happy to come back a couple pounds lighter. So much for that. It's a new day though, a new week, and a relatively new month. Beginnings always seem like a good time to start or restart something even though I know it doesn't really make any difference. <BR> <BR> It seems like whenever I've made weight loss and fitness progress in the past and reached a goal, I've given myself permission to return to old habits. It's occasiona... Sun, 6 Oct 2013 16:32:07 EST Vacation and still lost 2 pounds! <img src=""> <BR> <BR> Back from a great time in Oregon for a few weeks. I worked for two weeks as a volunteer on a land records digitizing project for the US Forest Service. It was my first time as a PIT (Passport in Time) volunteer and a good experience. Met some great people, camped, walked beaches and trails, ate fresh seafood. Had only one night of heavy rain and no leaks in the tent! The rest of the time was sunny and warm or fogg... Fri, 27 Sep 2013 15:49:58 EST Rain, beautiful rain! And 3 months on SP progress note Big change in the weather. T&L storm last night which has settled into a steady rain, our first since mid June. I live next to national forest. Long dry spells get a little worrisome. I love the sound of rain on the roof, and I love dancing in a warm rain. <BR> <BR> Wednesday I went to town for rewards for reaching my first mini-goal! Bought a new bicycle helmet (nowadays they look like alien spacecraft) and a water bottle. I'm delighted to find that this morning my waist is 2 inches smalle... Fri, 2 Aug 2013 16:51:29 EST Spinning my wheels, dreams come true, and remembering <img src=""> <BR> <BR> Last fall, I took my beautiful turquoise mountain bike out of the cellar where it languished for 15 years. I cleaned and lubed it, pumped up the tires, rode a few short minutes a few times, put it away for winter, and anxiously awaited spring. Then I broke my wrist in January and needed surgical repair with hardware. My first question at followup was, "When can I ride a bike?" "At least three months, then we'll tal... Thu, 11 Jul 2013 13:42:27 EST Be kind to yourself & focus on progress You've probably heard this or something like it before: If a friend falls behind or trips, you would help her or him catch up and get up; you wouldn't be mean. Be as kind to yourself on your journey as you would be to a friend. Treat yourself with compassion and respect. Give yourself time to adapt to your healthier new lifestyle. Be a good friend to you. <BR> <BR> It can be challenging in our culture of impatience to not see immediate transformation. In the short time since joining SP, I'm ... Tue, 18 Jun 2013 15:57:24 EST 5th week: What's working... 1. Honestly record everything in the Nutrition Tracker. It helps me see what nutrients I need to get more or less of and where I can trim calories. At first I was tempted to not include some foods that I thought of as bad (if I eat them I must be bad too guilt trip) or if I thought I'd gone over the suggested calorie range, but hey! Who am I kidding? There are no food police! To be successful in my weight loss journey I need to be honest with myself. That means logging EVERYTHING I've eaten a... Wed, 12 Jun 2013 16:59:56 EST Eating Mindfully Yesterday while reading at the table, I began munching mindlessly on some "healthy" crackers. After a time, I realized I had no idea how many I'd eaten. Healthy or not, too much is too many calories. I chided myself and promised not to do that again. <BR> <BR> This morning during 5-15 minutes of daily inspirational reading, the next section I'd bookmarked was titled "Cookie of Childhood" from the book Peace Is Every Step by Thich Nhat Hanh, a 92-year-old Buddhist monk. When he was a child in... Mon, 20 May 2013 19:59:26 EST