SANDRAHUGHES's SparkPeople Blog SANDRAHUGHES's Blog on SparkPeople, home of free diet plans and a healthy living community Sparkjournal Today is going well for me. I am watching my neices over the next few days and I was concerned that I wouldn't be able to keep up my healthy habits, but it's been fairly easy. I even weighed today and I am down to 143.6! Of course, that is on Anita and Tim's scale and that could be a little more forgiving than mine. Thu, 16 Jun 2011 14:38:18 EST The Toxic People in my Life will not Win!- Part 2 I don't think that my mother or father-in-law are trying to upset me. They might just be making conversation. In any case, they are at it again. <BR> <BR> Yesterday, I took my MIL to Zumba in an attempt to bond with her and include her in my life. <BR> I had previously steeled myself, knowing that there was a strong chance that she might criticize me somewhere along the way. We made it to Zumba and back with no unpleasantness- in fact, it was really fun. She is going to go with me again ne... Wed, 8 Jun 2011 15:34:18 EST The Toxic People in My Life Will Not Win! I have had great positive energy lately. It helps that school is almost out and that the year has ended well. It also helps that I have been reading The Spark and feeling a lot of my old motivation and enthusiasm returning. <BR> <BR> I am going to lose that last 8 pounds and be healthy and strong when we get pregnant. <BR> <BR> Yesterday was a great day. I did my 10 minutes of morning exercise. I walked a mile to work. <BR> <BR> I had a buffet dinner with my fellow teachers (where I ate... Thu, 2 Jun 2011 09:55:39 EST Apple Cider Vinegar I started trying ACV as a supplement to dieting and exercising. I started it about 2 months ago, and I have to say that I am really enjoying it. <BR> <BR> Every morning I have hot water with 2 tbs organic ACV, 1 tsp cinnamon, and 1 tbs local honey. <BR> <BR> It is tastier than it sounds, and has all sorts of health benefits. I really believe it has helped me keep my weight down through a stressful time in my life. It is an appetite suppressant and diuretic. It is also supposed to change t... Wed, 18 May 2011 15:21:19 EST kids say the darndest things Here is a conversation I just had with a boy who has such severe ADHD he can't get higher than a 20% in my class, no matter how hard I try. Mind you, this is in the middle of class, when I have a bazillion things to do and 40 kids to wrangle. <BR> <BR> Boy: Mrs. Hughes- did you always want to be an English teacher? <BR> <BR> Me: Yes. <BR> <BR> Boy: That's all you ever wanted to be- just a teacher? <BR> <BR> Me: Yes. Why do you ask that like it's a bad thing to be? <BR> <BR> Boy: You n... Fri, 21 May 2010 14:52:09 EST Only 2 weeks ago? Can his graveside service really have been only two weeks ago? I looked at the calendar today and was shocked to see that his memorial was on May 1st, his graveside on May 4th, and today is only May 19th. <BR> <BR> For some reason it feels like ages ago. Last night, I caught myself thinking about the place where he died. It was a very clean, well-run board and care facility. An okay place to die, but a really horrid , sterile, un-loving place to live. He only ended up spending 2 weeks there... Wed, 19 May 2010 13:14:44 EST Painful Thanksgiving My grandfather died yesterday. He was 89 1/2 years old. <BR> <BR> I thank God for so many things. <BR> <BR> I am thankful that he didn't have much pain, and didn't ever have to take a lot of painkillers. <BR> <BR> I am thankful that he died peacefully. <BR> <BR> I am thankful that he got to see all of his family before he went. <BR> <BR> I am thankful that he only spent 7 weeks on hospice, and was only really bed-ridden for that time. <BR> <BR> I am thankful that for 5 weeks of t... Thu, 22 Apr 2010 15:48:55 EST Feeling Down Part 2 I want to thank all the people who encouraged me after my last blog post. My good spirits have recovered over the past two weeks. I am still upset by the sad things happening to my family, but at least they are not new anymore. <BR> <BR> My grandfather is currently home. Last week, they took him to two different facilities, neither of which worked out for him. My grandmother is exhausted, and just can't care for him adequately, which is really hard for her. <BR> <BR> They are looking for ... Tue, 23 Mar 2010 16:18:36 EST feeling down My grandfather took a turn for the worst this weekend. He is slowly dying. He can't walk anymore and my grandmother isn't strong enough to care for him, so they are thinking about finding a group home or another type of facility where he can stay and have 24/7 care. He lost 16 pounds last month...but he didn't have 16 pounds to lose. He is about 5'7, and he weighs like 130 pounds now. He looks so small. <BR> <BR> He could die in a month or in 6 months or even in a year. We just don't know. ... Wed, 10 Mar 2010 17:55:59 EST Early prayer time I woke up extra early today so I could go to the 6:30 AM prayer meeting at my school. I feel kind of sleepy, but it was SO worth it. Thu, 4 Mar 2010 16:33:56 EST Strength Every day, I pray that the Lord will give me strength. HE was with me today. That's all that matters, anyway. <em>451</em> Tue, 2 Mar 2010 17:24:20 EST The Fallout Yesterday was certainly a difficult day for me emotionally, as you can tell from yesterday's blog. <BR> <BR> But today I am more able to look on the bright side of things. I may have gained two pounds, but I had already lost 4 pounds, so I am still 2 ahead. <BR> <BR> also, I'm only one pound over a healthy BMI. <BR> <BR> I am healthy...healthy..healthy. I am stronger than I have ever been and am doing more on my elliptical trainer than before. <BR> <BR> So, all is not lost. I will try... Fri, 26 Feb 2010 14:56:10 EST Up with the scale, down with my mood. I thought I lost a pound this week. I really thought I had. <BR> <BR> But this morning, I weighed in, and I had gained 1.8 pounds. I wanted to scream, I wanted to yell, I wanted to throw a fit...but what good would that do? <BR> <BR> I have all these reasons for weight gain flitting around in my mind. <BR> <BR> You haven't been eating enough. <BR> <BR> You've been eating too much. <BR> <BR>'ve gained muscle, not fat. <BR> <BR> Oh...You've been exercising more. <BR> <BR>... Thu, 25 Feb 2010 15:39:25 EST 5 years It was about 5 years ago, when I was 21 and weighed 175 pounds (I am 5'4) that I decided I had to do something about my weight, no matter what it took. <BR> <BR> It took me about 3 years to get down to 132- a weight loss of 43 pounds. I almost immediately gained back 6 pounds, but I was really happy at 138 as well, and I maintained there for a long time. <BR> <BR> Last year, I gained some back- my highest weight being 148 at the end of December 2009. <BR> <BR> I have been fighting to g... Wed, 17 Feb 2010 17:39:55 EST Good Clean Fun I was substituting a math class and perusing the internet the other day when I stumbled onto this hilarious website: <link> </link> It was so funny that I started laughing silently, but uncontrollably. The students thought I was crazy, but it was worth it. check it out. Fri, 11 Dec 2009 15:21:45 EST Whack-a-Mole My eating life feels like one of those giant games of whack-a-mole they play at arcades. Between eating frugally (we're saving $150,000 to build a house), eating healthily (I make all our own food, so we don't eat pre-processed foods, corn syrup, or pre-made things), and holding down a full-time job, I feel like things get a little crazy. My husband is starving and I'm gaining weight. Fri, 4 Dec 2009 15:41:45 EST Dreaming of running I had this dream last night, where I was running a 10k. I had gotten there kind of late, and had missed the opening instructions, but I just kept going around and around this track. I was much faster than in real life. A lot of confusing things happened, and there were lots of people cheating by cutting across the track, and chocolate covered peanut butter balls on tables everywhere. Finally, when it had felt like I had been running for ages, I asked someone in charge how much longer I had le... Tue, 1 Dec 2009 19:17:27 EST Dreaming of running I had this dream last night, where I was running a 10k. I had gotten there kind of late, and had missed the opening instructions, but I just kept going around and around this track. I was much faster than in real life. A lot of confusing things happened, and there were lots of people cheating by cutting across the track, and chocolate covered peanut butter balls on tables everywhere. Finally, when it had felt like I had been running for ages, I asked someone in charge how much longer I had le... Tue, 1 Dec 2009 19:16:38 EST Goals? What are those? So...I have been reflecting over the past 9 months or so. I have gained about 4 pounds since last January. I am doing a lot of good things, but not enough. <BR> <BR> I don't "do" fast food, or any pre-packaged crap. <BR> <BR> Everything we eat is homemade- I thought this would help me keep my weight down, but I think that in the process of making so much food, my appetite increases and more food finds its way down my throat. <BR> <BR> Of course, my skinny-mini husband has lost weight b... Thu, 10 Sep 2009 16:03:10 EST On a poetry jag this week! 34. Idolatry <BR> <BR> Skinny. Skinny. Skinny. <BR> <BR> We present these offerings: Hunger, Self-Hatred, Shame. <BR> <BR> We leave them on the altar of the bathroom scale. <BR> <BR> Please bless us, O god of the Thin. <BR> <BR> <BR> <BR> 9/2/09 <BR> <BR> 36. BEAUTIFUL BONES <BR> <BR> Beautiful bones, lovely bones, <BR> <BR> Jutting from your skin. <BR> <BR> I know it seems that jutting bones become a way to win. <BR> <BR> Chicken legs, scrawny legs, impossibly thin, <BR>... Thu, 3 Sep 2009 20:48:36 EST poetry I just wrote a poem. I know it's a little obtuse, but I like it. It has to do with self-image. <BR> <BR> THE FREEWAY <BR> <BR> You shout names at me through the traffic in my brain. <BR> <BR> I keep the buses and trains and trolleys and subways running. <BR> <BR> But soon, the rolling blackouts will come. <BR> <BR> The energy crisis may begin. <BR> <BR> The gasoline pumping from the hills in Bakersfield Iraq and Alaska and all those off-shore places will run out. <BR> <BR> There ... Thu, 27 Aug 2009 18:12:03 EST A word from my Sponsor...the Creator of the Universe. A few days ago, I was going through my usual weight conniptions. Am I at a healthy weight? How can I lose more weight? If I don't lose more, will I just keep gaining until I explode? Why is my twin always skinnier than me....etc, etc, etc, blah, blah, blah, yadda, yadda, yaddah. <BR> <BR> It is a well-worn mental path that I have been treading for the past 10 years. I have prayed about my weight issue many times, and I believe that God helped me to lose my 35 pounds. <BR> <BR> Anyway, I ... Mon, 3 Aug 2009 12:43:14 EST Life changed...again! So, the school year is over now. The students that I loved and yelled at and worked with and thought about nonstop...they will be in someone else's class next year. There was a time when I wanted them to go away more than anything, but now...I find myself a little...depressed, and even mourning them a little bit. I am teaching Summer School, but I still have 4 free hours open every afternoon that I did not have before. What on earth will I do with them? Unfortunately, they are the hottest, mo... Tue, 2 Jun 2009 15:24:18 EST Doctors I spoke to my gynecologist a few weeks ago about the house-building dilemma I discussed in my last blog. She said that if I start having babies around 28 or 29, I should have no problem having the 4 or 5 I want to have by the time I'm in my late 30's. That set my mind at ease a lot. And we installed our water tank yesterday, so we can have our first house-building inspection this month! Yay! Mon, 1 Jun 2009 15:03:15 EST almost four years of wedded bliss! My husband and I will have our four year wedding anniversary this summer. We have had a wonderful marriage and we love being together. Not that we haven't had our tiffs and frustrations of course, that's all part of the package. <BR> <BR> To celebrate, we're going to take a picnic lunch out to a place near our home called, "The Trail of 1,000 giants." It's this beautiful trail with thousands and thousands of Sequoias. <BR> <BR> We are both big long-term planners, and when we got married, ... Fri, 8 May 2009 10:08:10 EST Back and flying free! The play is over! The play is over! The play is over! I managed to only gain 2 pounds, and since I have lost five since New Years, I'm still ahead. 138 is a very normal weight for my body. <BR> <BR> Now, it's time to try and regain my life a little bit. My afternoons are finally free again, and I am ready to begin seriously training for my half marathon in the fall. Mon, 4 May 2009 16:53:59 EST Checking in after opening night Well, last night our show opened. We had a really great turn out and a wonderful performance. I couldn't have been prouder. Unfortunately, I have been so stressed out lately that my eating is not what it should be. I had a terrible eating day yesterday: Icecream, candy, pizza, french fries. It was bad. Fortunately, today is a new day, and for the most part, I have done okay. The show is almost over, and then I can get back to my real life. Fri, 1 May 2009 17:50:25 EST Lent Results Well, Lent has come and gone. My Lent resolution had been to give up, "sweets" for 40 days. I hoped that this would help my draw closer to Jesus and better understand the Resurrection Season. I had also hoped that it would help me learn some self control about sugar because I am a dessert junkie, and I don't believe Jesus wants us to be controlled by anything in this world. As Christians, we are to live lives of incredible freedom. <BR> <BR> Anyway, I was quite successful in my resolution, ... Mon, 13 Apr 2009 18:58:31 EST Day 2 of giant breakfasts and green tea I decided I like eating a large breakfast, especially since I don't have much time for eating in the middle of my day. I had another 600 (!) calorie breakfast and packed a 300 calorie lunch. For dinner, I'll have my usual 500 or so calories. It's a different way of eating for me, but I think I like it. I feel that my contentment levels are higher, and it keeps me from falling into the too small of a lunch trap. If I don't eat enough at lunch, then my cravings get super strong, my energy leve... Wed, 1 Apr 2009 12:19:52 EST 15 minutes miles, 600 calorie breakfasts, and Green Tea! On Saturday I went to a 5k in our community all by myself. For me, that took a lot of courage. When I started to feel intimidated by all the other runners, I just reminded myself that I had already done a good thing just by showing up. <BR> <BR> I've been working toward running 15 minute miles, and I wanted to run this 5k in 45 minutes. I huffed and puffed and ran and ran...and my time was exactly 45 minutes and 42 seconds. woo hoo! My next goal is to run 14 minute miles. There is another 5... Tue, 31 Mar 2009 12:21:55 EST Update Well, things are looking up since my last blog. When I wrote that, I was going through a tough time at work....the kids were driving me CRAZY and feeling pretty unhappy with my job, so losing the Melodrama felt like losing the only part of my life where I was appreciated. <BR> <BR> Things have calmed down at school and I have a few performances coming up; not as many as I'd like, but, hey, I'm happy. At church on Sunday I get to sing two solos; in April I get to sing 6-7 songs at a romantic... Thu, 26 Mar 2009 10:05:45 EST Post-Show Letdown So, the play ended about three weeks ago, and I have no new performances looming on my horizon. I can't seem to find out about auditions for the theatre groups I would like to be a part of, and while my headshots turned out very nicely, what's the good of them if there is no one to show them to? <BR> <BR> The show I'm directing is going well, but directing and acting are not nearly the same thing and directing doesn't feed that need in me to perform. <BR> <BR> So now I play the waiting gam... Tue, 10 Mar 2009 17:05:45 EST head shots This weekend, my Uncle Ronnie drove all the way from Fresno to Bakersfield to take headshots for me. I was really nervous because I am kind of planning on taking a big step with some of the auditions I am planning on going out for. But he did a wonderful job of course, and I am really excited to see the outcome. I felt really confident about the way I looked in all my outfits. Tue, 3 Mar 2009 16:34:09 EST Lent So Lent started this Wednesday. I didn't really realize it until today. I don't belong to a church that practices Lent, but I love the idea, so I usually try to pay attention to when it is and give something up for the 40 days. <BR> <BR> This year, it's going to be sweets. Unfortunately, sugar controls my life quite a bit. I see yummy sweets...and it feels like there is NO WAY I won't eat them all. My self-control is about zilch when it comes to desserts, candy, cookies, etc. <BR> <BR> I ... Fri, 27 Feb 2009 17:14:05 EST Slow and Steady won the race! Well, it is almost a week after I wrote my last entry, and I am happy to say that I did lose a pound this week! Yay! <BR> <BR> I cut out 100 calories a day, and I think that was what it took. It's nice to finally see some progress. Mon, 2 Feb 2009 15:48:32 EST Discouragement In 2008, I lost 5 pounds, and gained 8. I'm trying to get back down to goal weight of 133. I have spent 4 weeks doing everything that I know how to do to lose weight. Exercising regularly, staying below 1500 calories, drinking water, getting enough protein and fiber, and not eating too much fat or carbs. <BR> <BR> It's all that I know how to do! And since New Years, I have done it nearly perfectly! I didn't lose the first week, and I thought, "well, it's only been a week." I didn't lose the... Tue, 27 Jan 2009 15:35:26 EST Exceptionally Beautiful I got a really amazing compliment from my grandmother this week. I have the sort of grandmother who speaks her mind, for better or for worse. During my awkward, heavier phases, <em>15</em> she never meant to be unkind, but she would occasionally tell me she thought I was getting thick, heavy or fat, etc. Anyway, I have always craved her approval and been hurt when I felt she was judging me for my weight. <BR> <BR> This weekend she looked at me and said, "I saw you standing in the kitchen ... Sun, 25 Jan 2009 18:12:08 EST Of Melodramas and Hope Those of you who have been sparking or dieting for a long time know that there are ups and downs to every weight loss journey. I haven't been on an up for at least 6 months, but thankfully, I'm back on one now. <BR> <BR> I lost 5 pounds last year, and I got down to 132, for at least one brief, shining day. Then, over the course of about 7 months, I gained 10 back, which put me at 142 by last November. <BR> <BR> So, throughout the holidays and the rush of my sister's wedding, I busily w... Mon, 12 Jan 2009 17:43:27 EST Accepting myself Recently, I have been reading a few blogs and message boards dealing with accepting ourselves. It has made me think of all the things I need to accept about my body. <BR> <BR> 1. I need far less food than I want. <BR> <BR> 2. It takes me at least a month to lose 1 pound. <BR> <BR> 3. My body really WANTS to be heavier. It is trying to gain weight...but I have to think about what's best for it. <BR> <BR> 4. I will never be leggy or long-torsoed. I'm short and squatty and that doesn't ... Thu, 4 Dec 2008 15:53:21 EST Holiday Hottie I found this blog that has the 10 commandments for being a "Holiday Hottie." I liked it! <BR> <BR> 1. Thou shall exercise almost every day in December. <BR> 2. Thou shall say "no thank you" to 90% of the cookies and candies offered your way. <BR> 3. Thou shall not make lame excuses to avoid exercise. <BR> 4. Thou shall show up at parties with a healthy dish, so a smart choice will always be available. <BR> 5. Thou shall stick to a one alcoholic beverage maximum at all parties. <BR> 6. ... Tue, 2 Dec 2008 20:53:01 EST Why I am proud of myself I have a tendency to become morose while I'm cutting back on calories. I think part of it is that my body is having a physical reaction to let me know it's unhappy with less food, part of it is fear and frustration with lack of progress and the last part of it is simply overreacting when I mess up on my plan. <BR> <BR> Anyway, I have been feeling a little down about it the last few days so I decided I need to think about reasons why I am proud of myself, instead of discouraged. <BR> <BR> ... Sun, 16 Nov 2008 11:47:52 EST A mystery solved! Yesterday I was hunting around on Sparkpeople, and I stumbled across a BMR calculator. Your BMR is the amount of calories your body burns each day by just keeping itself alive. If you did nothing all day, this is the amount of calories your body would burn. <BR> <BR> When I began my journey 3 years ago, my BMR was around 1550 calories a day. I assumed that most days I burned around 250 calories just by going about my daily life, so I probably used about 1800 calories a day without exercisin... Tue, 11 Nov 2008 11:07:08 EST back on track/ are you pregnant? After a 2-month sparkbreak where I stopped tracking daily but kept exercising in the hopes of being able to maintain normally without counting every calorie I ate...I gained 7 pounds. <BR> <BR> So...that little experiment failed, but I am back tracking again and I lost 3 pounds almost immediately...only 4 to go to get back to where I am comfortable. <BR> <BR> Like most perpetual dieters, I am pretty self-concious about my weight and have a little bit of body dysmorphia (that's where you b... Thu, 23 Oct 2008 20:20:28 EST Summer Lovin' Last winter felt like the coldest winter of my life. Some of you might know what I mean if you are at a healthy body weight for the first time as an adult. I felt like I was freezing constantly! <BR> <BR> I felt as if all I wanted to do was curl up in a blanket, sleep, and stuff my face as much as I could. However, I fought those impulses, managed to even lose some weight over the winter, and kept exercising fairly regularly. <BR> However, it was very, very, very difficult, and I felt as i... Sun, 18 May 2008 19:42:37 EST Old shorts Yesterday was short-wearing weather. I was happy to be able to pull out last year's shorts. I tried them on, and lo and behold...they were too big! I looked at the size in surprise, to find that they were 8's. I hadn't realized that I had lost 2 clothing sizes since last year. Sing Hallelujah, say thankya! <em>9</em> <BR> <BR> The picture above is me last year, when the 8's still fit...albeit losely. Tue, 13 May 2008 14:05:50 EST fighting the winter pudge. Hanging in seems to be all I can do these days. Anthony and I have finally gotten better about working out again. We were able to start again after my show. I didn't gain any weight over the winter (actually, I lost some,) but I can still see some Winter pudge from the lack of exercise. I won't feel ready for a bathing suit for a while. <BR> <BR> Our finances have changed, so even though I will soon probably lose those last two pounds, I won't be able to reward myself with an awe... Thu, 8 May 2008 14:03:41 EST recovering from those "FOOLS!" I just finished directing my first full-length play, a comedy by Neil Simon called, "FOOLS." Excercise has fallen by the wayside, calories have increased severely, and my stress level has been very straining. <BR> <BR>'s finally over! I managed to track calories throughout the show and I don't think I've gained more than maybe a pound. I only lost one day...I went to track for the weekend and realized I had no idea when Thursday ended and Friday began. It's all such a blur. <BR> ... Tue, 22 Apr 2008 11:56:27 EST Bad? weekend I had what I considered to be a "bad" weekend. I didn't make the time to track my food for Friday, Saturday, and Sunday. I ate away from home at restaurants or other people's houses at least 4 times over the weekend, and I felt as if I was eating nonstop! Brownies, icecream, more brownies, etc. <BR> <BR> So today I finally had the time to track for the past 4 days. I wasn't surprised to see that I went over my limit for 3 of those 4 days, but I was surprised to see that it wasn't nearly as... Mon, 7 Apr 2008 13:49:57 EST dresses are too big for me? I was recently asked to sing at a concert in my town. I get to sing like 12 songs, and I am really excited about it! I decided to hunt online for the perfect 1940's style lounge singer dress. I found it at Sears...but they don't make anything smaller than an 8. An 8! I wear a 4 now! <BR> <BR> Since when did it become hard to find a size SMALL enough for me? I still feel (even though it's been nearly 3 years) like things probably won't look good on someone of "my size." Then I remember, no... Tue, 1 Apr 2008 16:37:48 EST "Ithaca" by C.P. Cavafy Well, through all the struggles of this month...I lost a pound! Yay! That puts me at 133. Weight loss feels SO SLOW...but it's SO worth it. I am glad I hung in there. <BR> <BR> Here is an incredible poem by C.P. Cavafy. It's for anyone whose ever gone on any journey of discovery: <BR> <BR> <BR> Ithaka <BR> <BR> Translated by <BR> Edmund Keeley & Philip Sherrard <BR> <BR> As you set out for Ithaka <BR> hope your road is a long one, <BR> full of adventure, full of discovery. <BR> Lais... Thu, 28 Feb 2008 10:14:50 EST