Nov 29, 2009

Baby, it's cold outside.

I went for a walk with my WW friend Tina and her dog Sadie today. We went down to the Burlington Waterfront and walked for about an hour. It was an overcast day and I really felt the cold coming off the lake. Even walking briskly I just couldn't get warm. My hands were cold and my legs felt like blocks of ice.

As soon as I got home I made a cup of hot chocolate and if I could have climbed into the cup, I would have.  I lay in bed and covered myself up with a quilt and a blanket and was still cold.  I am still feeling cold now, I just can't seem to get warm - it's like my bones are cold under my skin, you know?

Eating was good today, I got all my points in and the hour walk was good exercise.

I'm off to have a hot bath and then go to bed for the night, hopefully that will warm me up.

No work tomorrow,  I am going to Buffalo for the morning to get some groceries and pick up a few Christmas presents and then visit with a friend in Oakville for the afternoon.

Nov 28, 2009

Post 200!!!

Seriously, I couldn't think of another title. I am in awe that this is my 200th post! I would like to say I have something prolific and profound to say....but I don't. Just normal stuff.

Today was a good day. Eating was good despite the false start with my yucky, spinach-y Green Monster. I made homemade pizza for supper and we ate it while watching a rental of Star Trek. My eldest son said, "Where's the chips? Where's the popcorn? We're watching a movie!" I told him we didn't need that stuff to watch a movie and, once he got his breath back, he enjoyed his pizza with the rest of us.  It was a nice few hours, we hardly ever watch movies together as our tastes are all so different, but we all agreed Star Trek was amazing and loved it.  I was worried my hero, James T. Kirk, would be tarnished in my memory after watching it but now I love him more :)

No real exercise today unless you count running up and down the stairs with loads of laundry.   Tomorrow I am off for a walk or hike with Tina (Nowmotivated from WW online) and her lovely dog, Sadie, so that will be fun and good exercise.

I had decided to take back the Magic Bullet but my husband had already recycled the box so I'm not sure if I can return it without the packaging, I'll call Costco tomorrow and see what they say. If not, I am sure we can use it for light chopping or blending protein shakes that don't have ice or spinach! What a let down!!!

Magic Bullet - First Impressions

Well I've used my Magic Bullet twice and I have to say, I am underwhelmed. Maybe I had too high expectations from the infomercials and other bloggers and Weight Watchers.

I used it first last night to make a smoothie - it does not crush ice. I only had 4 ice cubes in the tall cup and only two of them crushed, the other two just bounced around the cup...I tried the tapping and the shaking that the manual says to help.  Also, because the ingredients go into the top of the cup (and then its turned upside down), the ingredients that end up on the top don't seem to get sucked into the blades very well..once again the tapping and shaking didn't seem to help.

I used it again this morning to make a Green Monster. This time I used the mini blender attachment. Same thing, ice didn't crush and the spinach was left in tiny little flakes rather than completely pureed/emulsified like my regular blender which resulted in being able to taste the spinach in the Green Monster - this the first time that has ever happened. Normally the spinach is so blended/pureed/emulsified into the fruit that it is completely tasteless.

Right now, I'm thinking of packaging it up and taking it back to Costco and sticking with my regular blender.

Nov 26, 2009

Talk, talk, talk about everything.

Yesterday and today have been super hectic.

I don't know if I've ever mentioned before that I have PCOS.  One of the symptoms of this disorder is that occasionally the cysts burst - extremely painful and very messy (TMI, sorry!).   The pain is excruciating, it is way worse than labour pain - it's like a hot poker going through your abdomen but the pain radiates and is so intense that I have waves of nausea. It started Tuesday and was tolerable, by Wednesday I was in agony until around 9 last night, the cyst finally burst - the pain remains for about another 24 hours but it's more like a dull ache and is manageable with Tylenol or Advil.  This hasn't happened to me in about 5 years. It used to be almost every other month occurrence, but controlling my blood sugar, losing some weight and synthroid (for thyroid disorder) have helped tremendously.

Tonight my husband and I went for haircuts. He hasn't had a haircut since his surgery in April and he was starting to look like a shaggy dog!  He looks so much younger with it all trimmed neatly and the grey cut away!  I have the same haircut, just a trim - I had let it get way too long and it was flat and unmanageable. It feels all bouncy now, don't you love that "new haircut" feeling?

Then it was off to Costco.  I got my Magic Bullet. I was going to get one for my birthday a few weeks ago but a friend who works at Costco told me there would be a $10 off coupon in November - so I waited. $10 is $10!!! So  I got it for $39.99 - amazing!  I can't wait to use it for my Green Monsters. I wanted to get some Mary's Crackers as well but they had sold out :(. I have to go back on Saturday so I'll check then.  Liam loves crackers and I shudder to think how much fat and crap he is putting into his little body - so I've stopped buying them and he is asking for them all the time.  He's not picky about what type so if I can find semi-healthy ones...all the better!  I also got some amazing fruit preserves, frozen berries, milk, bottled water, haddock loins (yummy), brussel sprouts (I finally figured how to roast them to perfection!), olive oil, canola oil....can't remember what else, but the bill was almost $200 - OH Clean Eating Magazine!!! Yahoo!

Frozen pizza is in the oven right now for a very late dinner. They had sold out of the thin crust one I normally get for me so I'm going to have one slice of the high fat - mega cheese laden one and a salad.  Then its treadmill time. I found a new show to watch on line. I love X-Weighted but I was getting bored of the format watching the same show over and over.  This one is on an American station, Diet Tribe, about a group of young women who are friends and trying to lose weight together. I really liked the first episode.

A few people have asked me about weigh - ins the last few days. I don't have a scale. I will most likely get one when I go to Buffalo next week - I want one that measures body fat and has a memory so everyone can use it and Target has one at a really good price. Last time I weighed myself was about 8-9 weeks ago and I was at 213. I've lost another inch off my waist since then but I don't think any real weight. I'm good with that. It's been a crazy few months - I'm glad to have maintained and not gained and I'm glad to be getting good at managing life and food without failing at one or the other and without feeling like a failure.

Next week I am rejoining the YMCA.   We were members for years, the boys did swimming, karate, basketball - everything - and I mostly did Aquafit and the treadmill, then we moved, I lost my job - blah blah blah. You know what, a family membership is under $100/month and it is a great sense of community and a safe, nurturing place for the boys.  Right now they are saying they won't go - but I'm going to get the family membership and hope they come around. They love swimming and now Iain is old enough he can go into the weight room himself, I know he will come around.

OK, I've managed to talk your ears off and say nothing at all - one more thing then I'm done!

I received two blog awards in the last few days, so a big shout out thank you to Leanne and Candace. Two great ladies who always make me laugh and always cheer me on.

The Rules & Regulations are as follows:

Each Superior Scribbler must in turn pass the award on to five most deserving bloggers

Each Superior Scribbler must link to the author and the name of the blog from whom s/he has received the award.

Each Superior Scribbler must display the award on his/her blog, and link to The Scholastic Scribe, which explains the award.

Each blogger who wins The Superior Scribbler Award must visit this post and add his/her name to the Mr Linky List. That way, they'll be able to keep up-to-date on everyone who receives this prestigious honor.

Each Superior Scribbler must post these rules on his/her blog.

So since I received it twice, I feel justified in awarding 10 people!

Andrea at
Sheridan at
Crystal at
Crys at
Tiffany at

Kris at
Dawne at
Kerry at
Tamara at
Cowgirl Warrior at

Have a lovely evening everyone and I hope all my US friends had a great Thanksgiving!

Nov 25, 2009

Drive By Posting

Quick and short post tonight.

Just wanted to wish my American Blogland friends a Happy and Healthy Thanksgiving Day.

Hugs to all of you.

Nov 24, 2009

Festive Eating and 10% makes a difference!

Hi everyone,

Today was a great day again. It feels so good to be in the right frame of mind and the drama at home/work is settling down - not completely over - but I can see light at the end of the tunnel.

We (the family) went to Swiss Chalet tonight for the Festive Special. The entire meal, including 2 Lindors is 14 points (without the bun)!  That's it!  It was so good. I enjoyed every mouthful.  It did put me over my daily points of 26 by 6 points but today is the end of my Weight Watchers week and I still had 20 Weekly Points so it was not a problem, plus I've started keeping track of Activity Points. I hadn't been counting them because when I tried WW before I would "eat" them and that was giving me an excuse to eat crappy food.  I think I'm in a better place now with food and I know I can easily manage on my allotted points and dipping into my Weekly Points when I need to.

Then I came home and hit the treadmill to get it in before The Biggest Loser. I did 1.33 miles in 30 minutes. I hit a mile at exactly 22 minutes. My comfortable stride seems to be 2.9-3.1 mph, anything more than 3.1 mph and I have to run to keep up with the treadmill. I'm only 5 feet tall and my stride is short so I have to take real quick steps to keep up.  I know when I used to walk outside, my stride was longer, so I could cover more distance faster - it seems harder to take longer strides on the treadmill, but its something to focus on as I go forward.

And...I did discover why I had such a hard time yesterday. My son had set the treadmill at the 10% incline!  The incline is manual, the front of the treadmill fits into slots on the frame so when you turn the treadmill on, it doesn't tell you where it is.  So I didn't notice today until after I got off but I was so determined to do better today than I did yesterday so that I just pushed myself and didn't even notice. 

My glutes and quads are screaming now though - so definitely the 10% difference had an effect!

So..remember I'm a Biggest Loser Virgin, this is my first they all go home? What happens next? I guess I thought it was like other reality shows where when they get to the "Final Four", they have some major challenge to determine the nature of the show, I guess The Biggest Loser has to be the one who lost the most weight, right?

Bloggy Problems and E CookBook Winner

Only one person entered my giveaway, so she's the winner - Kimberley at K The Phoenix. Thanks Kimberley! Please send me your email address and I will put the order in for Jenn to email you the E-Cookbook directly.  Enjoy!!!


I loved my new template, but its just not working, some people can't see it, some people can't leave back to default for a bit.

I think I will contact The Blog Fairy as a Christmas present and get her to do a "proper" blog page for me.

Thanks for all your nice comments yesterday everyone.  I'm posting them here because they were so nice and I want to share!!

Great Attitude Enz! Its so hard at the end of the day when something happens/feel off, to get through a workout...or even want to workout. And YOU DID it! NEVER GIVE UP!
I LOVE your blog background! Id have it too, but I dont want to copy yours! lol :)

Sorry I had to email this to you, I wasnt able to verify the word when I tried to leave a comment on your blog! 

Have a great day!
Kristina (the Incredible Shrinking Woman)

From Tiffany:  

Hey Enz,

Just wanted to let you know that I tried to leave you a comment earlier and it didn't work. I got to the part with the word verification, but then there was no box to type the word in.

Anyway...I was just basically saying good for you for doing the treadmill workout even though you didn't want to. It's that kind of attitude that's oing to help you reach your goals. Woot!

Nov 23, 2009

Fighting Every Step

Today was a good day. Eating was perfect. I felt amazing all day; full of energy, happy, non-stressed, pretty - feeling really good in my skin, you know?

I stopped on the way home at our local Metro (grocery store) and found they had a whole bunch of "Buy One - Get One Free" specials. Bonus!! With two teenage boys in the house, it seems the fridge is always empty, so this was a great chance to stock up on alot of staples.  That put me in a better mood.

I came home and Den had cleaned the kitchen, it looked amazing - tidy AND clean!  My pet peeve is coming home to a messy kitchen - it just puts me right off from cooking or spending any time there at all - especially when I left in the morning and it was clean!

Made and ate dinner and still felt great.  

Came upstairs and changed into shorts and sports bra and got ready for my "date" with Paul Plakas.  Started walking on the treadmill and I just couldn't get comfortable, couldn't find my stride, couldn't find the right pace, couldn't get my breathing right. I was pissed!!!  I wanted to stop and just say "F* It".  Then I got madder.

I could actually hear Paul Plakas saying to me, "You can't walk 30 minutes! You might as well go coffin-shopping right now and call it a day."  I just kept putting one foot in front of the other over and over, I was not going to stop. It took until I hit 20 minutes before I felt "ok".  Then I went to 35 minutes just because. So I ended up with 1.48 miles in 35 minutes, not the best I've ever done but I fought for those 35 minutes with every step.  My hair was plastered to my head and I had to peel my bra and shorts off they were so soaked with sweat.

The wierd thing is, I've walked farther and faster - many, many times. I don't know what was wrong tonight - I just couldn't get into it - but I'm glad I didn't give up.

Giving up is not an option anymore.

Nov 22, 2009

Sweat in my eyes - better than tears, I guess!

I worked out on the treadmill with Paul Plakas again tonight.  You know what, he's got a really cute smile, but man, he is hard as nails. He does not give an inch!!!

So I did 30 minutes and 1.33 miles which is .08 miles more than yesterday in the same time.  And after dinner, I'll do Day 2 of the The Biggest Loser 30-Day Jumpstart workout.

The treadmill and aquafit are the only two forms of exercise that I have ever seemed to stick with consistently.

The one thing I HATE about it though is that sweat falls into my eyes and damn, it stings!  My hair is just above shoulder length but is cut in reverse layers - so the front is longer than the back - which means i can tuck the front behind my ears but it is too short to put up out of my eyes.  Ideas, people! I need ideas!  I usually keep a facecloth on the treadmill to wipe my face as I go along and I sweat - ALOT!

Dinner tonight is a homemade turkey burger and some pan grilled zucchini. 

I am working on my own version of something like Arnold's Sandwich thins for 1 point each. I love Arnold's and when I go to Buffalo I'll buy 4 packages at a time and freeze them.  I use them for everything; toast, in place of burger/hotdug buns, in place of bagels, for sandwiches, for mini pizzas.  However, there are alot of "artificial" ingredients in them and I think I've been working on recreating my own version for 1 point with no artificial ingredients or even 2 points would be acceptable to me if it was a clean, natural, whole food. I'll keep you posted.

A few months ago, I made my own version of Larabars - loved them.  A little too much. They are very, very high in points and high in natural sugars and since I am diabetic, they are too much of a temptation to have "in the house" I stopped making them.

Off to read a bit before dinner.

Two Giveways - go get in on 'em!!!

Jenn at Watch My Butt Shrink is having a great Jillian Michaels' give away. Head on over to see how you can have a chance to win!

And don't forget about my little giveaway as well, you can read about it, and get in on it,  here.

Nov 21, 2009

X-Weighted + Treadmill + The Biggest Loser + Me

Tonight there is a GTA Blogger Get Together that I was planning to go to.  I changed my mind this afternoon for a variety of reasons. The biggest reason is that I just felt like cocooning, I’ve had a crazy few months and I just feel like I want this weekend to be about NOTHING and about whatever I feel like doing, not what I feel like I NEED to do, you know?

I had a ton of errands to run this morning – so got that over with then came home and started planning dinner – slow simmered beef stew with lots of potatoes, carrots and onions – just like mom used to make – but without all the fat (Sorry Mom!!).

Then I figured I would “cocoon” all night. Cocooning to me, means a favourite movie or DVD and a bowl of ice cream and sitting on the couch with the boys.

I decided to do some exercise while the stew is simmering and I walked on the treadmill while watching X-Weighted.  Did you know you can watch episodes on line – free – at  They even have the most recent family episodes up!  It was great walking on the treadmill and having Paul Plakas to cheer me on (well…a girl can dream, right?)  Then, after that I did the First Day of The Biggest Loser 30-Day Jump Start workout. I know I don’t do enough strength or core training, so this is my attempt to incorporate it more. The exercises are pretty simple and the reps work up over the course of 30 days. 

Phew – time for a quick shower before the stew!

To all my GTA Bloggers – have a great night – I can’t wait to hear all about it and see pics!!!

Nov 20, 2009

Prior Fat Girl's E-Cookbook

Jen over at Prior Fat Girl has compiled an E-cookbook.  I just bought mine and since it is for a good cause - $4 of the $5 fee goes to the YMCA, I'd like to give one away.

All you have to do is mention the E-Cookbook in your blog and leave me a comment telling me you did that AND leave a link to your favourite cooking or healthy eating site in the comment.

I'll draw winners on Monday and Jen will email the book directly to you.

Happy E-Cooking!

Nov 14, 2009

Starting Saturday

I woke up this morning wanting a big, buffet-style, brunch-style breakfast. I was envisioning pancakes and bacon and an omelette and hot buttered toast.

I woke up hungry.  I was completely ready to get everyone up and tell them I was treating them to breakfast.  Back in the days before "teenagehood" hit my boys and they didn't sleep til noon, I would often make a big brunch style breakfast at home and that would pretty much tide us over til dinner time.  It was a lot less expensive than going out and everyone could have what they wanted.  As life got more hectic, we carried on the tradition by going out to a local restaurant.  I was probably eating a week's worth of calories in one meal in both situations.

This morning I made some pancakes (Heart Smart Bisquick/milk/yogurt/rolled oats) and topped them with some thawed strawberries and ricotta cheese.  It was delicious and filling and satisifed my "itch". Along with a big mug of instant coffee and I felt satisfied both physically and emotionally and my wallet is thanking me too!  This clocked in at 7.5 points (549 calories).

I saw my doctor about 2 weeks ago and she was thrilled with my weight loss so far and all my "numbers".  She was worried I wasn't eating enough when she looked over my food journal. Sure, sometimes I indulge and go overboard, but she said "In general, I don't think you're hitting 1000 calories a day and you should be hitting minimum 1200 or an average of 1200 over a 5 day period".  She suggested Sparkpeople, which I know alot of bloggers use. So I've been tracking for about 6 days now and she's right...most days I hit about 900-1000. One day I hit 1400. Following WW, I know some days I don't hit my points target. I think 2600 points works out to about 1300 calories a day, give or take.  I'm going to keep tracking in Sparkpeople, although I find it time consuming and tedious - counting to 26 is much easier than 1200 - and see how it goes.

I think I've written about this before.  I'm in the danger zone for me right now. In other weight loss attempts (except my first attempt where I was almost at goal and then got pregnant), I hit 210-215 and get completely stalled.  Physically, emotionally, mentally. I cannot go on. Then I give up. Then I gain back the weight I lost, plus a few more pounds. More each time.  I've been here for about 8 weeks.  Usually by now, I've given up and am well on the way UP the scale again.

This time, I am not giving up. I am not gaining back the 37 lbs I've lost so far. If I never lose another pound, that is better than going back to 250 (and this time most likely 250+).  I will just keep pushing and going and eventually I will get to a healthy weight and when I do, I will stay there.  This time around is so different. I haven't even thought about giving up - not once. Not after a bad eating day, not after a stressful, no exercise day, not after a week of not tracking or eating properly. I wake up each day and tell myself (some days outloud!) that "I will eat well and do some form of activity TODAY. TODAY, I will take care of myself."  String enough days together and the weight comes off, I feel better, I move easier, I sleep better and my "numbers" show me I'm getting healthier and healthier, by the day.

Nov 13, 2009

Friday's Challenges

Thanks for all your great comments yesterday.

I thought about "life" in general alot last night and although I am going through some personal, professional and family "issues" right now - my life is pretty good. I have a good marriage (21 years and counting) with a man who loves me,  2 wonderful, funny, intelligent, caring teenage boys, great family and friends and general good health. I am employed and able to support my family and I have my books and my freedom.

Eating well and exercising and losing weight - these are things that require a great amount of attention and diligence. When I am overwhelmed by "life", I get resentful and angry that this is so hard. Why can't it be easy? Why can't I be normal?  That attitude leads to self-defeating behaviour.  Even yesterday, I caught myself. I went to Wendy's for lunch and had a grilled chicken sandwich. I didn't eat the fries (that's become normal now - I should just stop ordering a combo) and I only ate half the bread.  But when I got home from work, I thought how nice it would be to go out to dinner. I thought, I already had Wendy's today, so the day's shot - just have what you want for dinner and start fresh tomorrow.

STOP!!! I literally stopped myself in my tracks.  I did not ruin the entire day! Even the fries wouldn't have ruined the day! The only thing that would ruin my day would be to give up any control I had left and just eat without thinking.  So I had a sensible dinner, a long hot bath and watched some tv.  Crisis averted for another day. I don't know if I'll be able to do that every time those thoughts rear their ugly head - but I did it yesterday and now today is a new day with new challenges.

Today, I'm having two restaurant meals. Lunch is catered at a training function at our head office and then dinner with some WW on line women. The dinner is at Montana's restaurant and I downloaded their nutrition guide to see what I would like to "spend" my points on.  Pretty much - nothing, other than plain salad is low points.  So I'll work out what the best option is - that will still taste good to me and be a treat and enjoy every bite. 

What I've been doing the last six months or so is taking half my meal home because I find the restaurant portions way too big. Don't get me wrong - I could physically eat the entire meal but now I know I would feel sick and full and stuffed. I am now choosing not to and know that I can enjoy the other half at another time.  This is the best strategy, I've found for restaurant meals so that I can have what I want without beating myself up later and without feeling sick. For a while I would just stick to salad or grilled chicken etc. but then I was resenting the experience and not enjoying the company or the treat of someone else cooking and cleaning up.

I will do some big batch cooking over the weekend so the freezer is stocked for those "I don't feel like cooking" nights next week and plan to use the crock pot (thanks Tiff!) for one or two nights as well.

I have no doubt that I will get through this - and I will come out stronger, smarter and healthier - but it won't happen by itself, I'll have to do some work.

Nov 12, 2009

Choosing My Reaction

Life is still hectic and stressful for me right now. I am beginning to forget what "normal" looks like. Maybe this is my new normal?  I feel like I'm living in a bad soap opera where every day brings new drama. I know that how I react to the drama is more important  than the drama itself.  And I am trying very hard not to react with food or poor choices.  It's so easy at the end of a crazy day to just go home and order pizza or stop in the drive through or not eat at all and just go to bed early to hide from life, but I know I won't feel better if I do that, I don't even like that kind of food all that much any more, but it satisfies my need for "now and no work" and seems to make me feel less stressed because it's one less thing I need to think about at that moment in time.  It's also setting a bad example for my boys who are still growing and need healthy, nutritious food not junk!

You know how sometimes your mind gets so full of stuff that you can't even organize your thoughts? I have felt like that for a few weeks and then today a whole new issue was added. I'm not trying to be mysterious, but I don't want to share my entire life here or turn this blog into a venue for whining and venting about everything.

Anyway - obviously I need more strategies to deal with this so I don't resort to pizza and drive thru.  Perhaps cooking and freezing meals ahead of time or enlisting more help from Den and Iain...but I do need to do something.

Nov 11, 2009

Curbing binges by going Strictly Sexual

That got your attention didn't it?

A day off work in the middle of week! I did housework stuff, read, watched movies, caught up with friends on the phone and online.

Foodwise, I started out with a good breakfast.  When 12 came and I wasn't feeling hungry I decided to "give it an hour", an hour later still not feeling hungry but my blood sugar was 5.4 so I knew I should eat something. I ate two mini spring rolls and then it hit - all afternoon I could not stop eating.  I just ate and ate.  The good thing is that I ate apples, carrots, salsa and baked pita chips, low fat cheese - and I stayed within my daily points - right now I have 2 left.  When it was dinner time (tonight I made the meatballs/pasta I meant to make last night) I was so "full" that I couldn't eat and didn't want to eat.  On the one hand, what could have been a major crap-filled binge was controllable, on the other hand, I still don't like the feeling of being out of control around food and wish I could figure out what triggered this today.  It's under control now and I am confident tomorrow will be easier to manage - at least thats what I'm telling myself (fake it til you make it, right Tiff?).

Going back to Shay and The Biggest Loser for a minute, I saw the clip of her on Jay Leno and it looks like she is doing well so far. I also saw a sneak preview of next week's episode and it looks like they start next week's episode with Shay's "after".

I watched the movie, "Strictly Sexual" tonight on and loved it!  I had never heard of it and when I read the synopsis I thought it might be too sexually explicit for my sensibilities - it did have a couple of really racy scenes - but nothing over the top. The movie itself was sweet and silly and romantic and really alot of fun. Some great actors I've never even heard of.  I hardly ever watch movies and I used this tonight as a way to keep me out of the kitchen and it worked! I watched it on my laptop sitting on my bed so there was no food involved (I never take food into my bedroom).

I am sure tomorrow is going to be a busy, busy day at work. Even though I had the day off, no one else does my work - so it will all be waiting there for me. Lucky me!!!

Nowhere to go

Is there any better feeling than waking up on a work day and not having to go to work?

I got up this morning and made breakfast (Arnold's sandwich thin, fried egg and slice of fat free cheese)  and ate it at my dining room table instead of at my desk, I made breakfast for the boys - sat and chatted with Liam while he ate his cereal (crazy kid eats Fibre 1!)..although I am not sure if you can call it chatting on his end, he's not a morning person.

Everyone is gone. The house is quiet. It is such a feeling of freedom knowing the whole day awaits.

Lest we forget



In Flanders Fields

In Flanders fields the poppies blow
Between the crosses, row on row,
That mark our place; and in the sky
The larks, still bravely singing, fly
Scarce heard amid the guns below.

We are the dead. Short days ago
We lived, felt dawn, saw sunset glow,
Loved, and were loved, and now we lie
In Flanders fields.

Take up our quarrel with the foe:
To you from failing hands we throw
The torch; be yours to hold it high.
If ye break faith with us who die
We shall not sleep, though poppies grow
In Flanders fields.

Lt.-Col. John McCrae (1872 - 1918)


We are so privileged to live in a country that is safe. We don’t wake up to gunfire or suicide bombers or terrorists. We sleep soundly at night, knowing that the war is clear on the other side of the world and only touches us remotely or we may know someone who knows someone who was killed.

Both my grandfathers fought in WWII. My maternal grandfather died as a result of injuries he sustained in combat, about a year after he was sent home.  I have a dear friend who is a Vietnam Vet (he’s American) and I know the experience changed his life.  The day I was born, he was leaving his first tour of duty.

I can only pray my boys grow up never having to be soldiers, never having to fight in this country or another’s. I am both grateful for, and saddened by, the men and women who choose the military as their career and heartbroken for those we lose.

I am not “into” politics and I admit, I don’t understand alot of the reasons for the current war (this isn’t meant to start a huge debate) but I don’t see how there will ever be a “winner” or how it will ever “end”.

So for today, let’s remember the freedoms we have and what they cost and appreciate them and let’s hug those we love and be grateful we live here.

Nov 10, 2009

Biggest Loser Snackage


While watching The Biggest Loser tonight, I wanted a crunchy, sweet snack. This is what I came up with – I just put everything in a ziploc bag and shook it.

It was perfect. Crunchy, sweet, filling and only 3 points – plus I surpassed my fibre requirement for the day. I’m going to make up bagged portions to grab on the go or for when a sweet craving hits.

Note: The ingredient list says semi sweet chocolate candy – the recipe builder actually lists it as semi sweet chocolate chips but when the recipe prints it says candy (I think its a US thing about the rules for calling something “chocolate”).  The dried cranberries was also 1 tsp but I didn’t have the option of putting that into the recipe builder (unfortunately its not very flexible).



Ok, so what’s the deal with not showing Shay’s progress? Was it because she did so well they want to save it for the finale? Or, was it because,  as my son said, “She epic-failed Mom”?  It was interesting that when she went home this time, she had a huge welcoming party and the last time her family acted like they didn’t even know who she was or why she was there.

Amanda has been my favourite since Day 1 and I am so glad she’s still there. I am loving Danny’s strength and tenacity and perseverance as well.

I noticed something funny tonight. All the women looked taller from their before photos. The reason this stood out to me is that lately, my legs have looked longer. Now this is funny because I am only 5’ tall and my legs are very short.  I realised, this morning, that my legs look longer because when I sit down – my stomach isn’t covering halfway down my thighs. I actually have a lap now. I can actually put my laptop on my lap!  So – when I am at goal weight, will I look 6’ feet tall?

A girl can dream!

Today is the end of my WW week and I used 31/26 points today.  Over the week I used 13.5/35 Weekly Points. I don’t know how many activity points as I don’t track them so I don’t eat them!  If I had a scale,  tomorrow would be weigh in day.  But I am feeling good. My clothes fit better, my waist is now 36.75 inches (down from 44 inches starting) and my blood sugar is staying steady and in the optimum range.  I’m feeling good about this past week and ready to tackle the week ahead – one day at a time.

Busy Tuesday

Its been a whirlwind of a day.

I came in this morning planning to take tomorrow off, I only had two major items due today. By 10 a.m. I was run off my feet - I could NOT keep up today. Everyone wanted everything now. 

Finally - I am caught up, I can breathe and I am taking tomorrow off.

No good reason except I have vacation days I need to use before the end of the year and I feel like a "break".  I will probably waste the day, watch tv, cook, read - do nothing productive!

It was so wierd how I felt yesterday, today I am feeling fine and no problems. Very odd.  Food was good today:

Breakfast - pkg of Weight Control Oatmeal (maple flavour)
Lunch - frozen entree - President's Choice Chicken Chow Mein (the box showed lots of veggies but in reality it was mostly noodles)
Snack - mini rice crispies square
Dinner will be- homemade meatballs, pasta, grilled zucchini

Right now I'm at 13/26 points so plenty left for dinner and a snack before bed and I need to squeeze some more fruit/vegetables in - today was woefully low and I haven't had any milk yet!

I have some errands to run on the way home so I won't be home til a bit later. I want to stop by Wal-Mart and get some new TV DVDs to watch while I'm on the treadmill...not sure what yet!  Will let you know later.

Nov 9, 2009 I old or what????

I didn't get to nap, I left my laptop logged into MSN and it was dinging away - there is only one contact on MSN so I knew who it was, someone I hadn't spoken to in a few weeks - so I hopped out of bed and chatted for awhile. Then the boys were complaining they were hungry so I went and made dinner - tonight was pork schnitzel with basmati rice, corn niblets and green beans. 23.5/26 points for today.

Now I'm ready for bed...honestly I am so tired. I checked my blood sugar before I ate and it was 6.1 so it still wasn't low.  Although I have to admit, I do feel better now I've had a meal - but still tired, so I'm turning in early tonight.

Will catch up to you all tomorrow!!

Feeling Low...

Since about noon I have felt "off", almost like my blood sugar is too low...but I've been checking it and its been between 5.9 and 8.0 all day (for non diabetic speakers, that is just about PERFECT). I feel cranky, tired, listless, anxious, not focused, light headed. I had an apple around 2 p.m.but that didn't seem to help, so I'm not hungry. I drank lots of water so I'm not dehydrated, I don't think. 

I drove home from work with all the windows rolled down and the radio blaring to try and keep me alert, but I still feel like I drove home on auto-pilot, you know? I don't feel "sleepy" tired, just worn out and it came on all of a sudden almost right after lunch - which was not high in carbs either.

I'm going to try and have a short nap before I start dinner and see if that helps.  More later.

Monday Madness - NOT

Happy Monday :)

Today is starting off to be a good day.  I had cereal for breakfast and brought a chicken wrap for lunch.

Starting today, work should be much less stressful because the one person in our team who we called "Mr. Slacker" has left and we have a new person who is much more reliable, conscientious and knows her job!  This will take a ton of stress off me having to deal with him, as well as having to fix his mistakes and clean up his work.

I am also sending out resumes at lunch time today and meal planning since I didn't get that done last night.

Not sure what is for dinner, I have some veal schnitzel in the fridge that looks good and have it with rice and some kind of vegetable.

I can't believe how well I am sleeping lately, I am getting 8 hours of solid sleep and it is making a huge difference in how I feel about everything as well as my tolerance/patience with life's ups and downs and helping to steady my blood sugar.  There are so many positive side effects of just losing these 37 lbs that have nothing to do with a number on the scale or how I look in my jeans and I think focusing on and relishing and appreciating these changes will keep me motivated and positive through the struggles.

Nov 8, 2009

Sunday Sundown

Today was a good day.

I was very productive once I logged off this morning. I decluttered and cleaned out the pantry and two kitchen cupboards.  I have a box of stuff waiting to the local fire hall tomorrow for a local food bank and two bags of stuff to be dropped off at Goodwill.  I even recruited Liam into helping me, he didn't want to, but once he saw I was getting rid of stuff, he was excited and kept saying, "Do we really need this?" "Can we get rid of this?"  Now, if he can keep that enthusiasm so I can tackle all the crap in the basement......

I met my friend Tina at Panera Bread and I had lunch there while I waited for her. I love their Creamy Tomato Soup.  It was nice to chat and catch up with her, I'm trying to convince her to do the Santa Shuffle as well.  She isn't quite sold yet, but I'll work on her!

Dinner was roast chicken, mashed potatoes, green beans and stuffing.  I was inspired by Andrea's Festive Special post and decided to improvise and create our own for tonight's dinner.  I had skinless, bone in chicken breasts and I brushed them with a mixture of olive oil, ground sage, garlic powder, salt and pepper and roasted them in the oven. They came out moist with a very crispy "skin".  Delicious.  No free chocolates though :) 

So far I am at 25/26 points and I will have a NSA Jello Chocolate Pudding before bed so that will put me right at 26/26 for the day.

Didn't get any exercise in today, unless you count bending and reaching and climbing to clean out the cupboards and carrying out heavy bags/boxes and sweeping/mopping the floor and scrubbing the counters - no wonder I needed to shower again before I headed out to meet Tina! 

It will be an early night tonight. I'm going to go throw my breakfast and lunch together for tomorrow and then read for a bit and go to bed.

Sunny Sunday

It is so bright outside!  What a gorgeous day. It's so wierd that the what I see outside my window in the morning can set my mood for the day.

I ended up going out yesterday to take Liam to pick up his glasses at Hakim and to pick up Den's prescriptions at Wal-Mart.  I honestly am so sick of driving!!! I drive each day to work and there are times the commute can be 1.5 hours each way. I am dreading winter and driving to work. I've never been fond of driving. Normally Den does all the driving - but with this job and his brain injury - I don't have a choice right now, thats why I try to drive as little as possible on the weekends. Some weekends I don't drive at all - heaven!!  Today I am going to meet another WW online member, Nowmotivated (hi Tina!) at Panera Bread for coffee - and I am looking forward to that. I may go a little early, take my laptop and meal plan for the week. 

Great things about Panera Bread:

1. free wifi
2. free refills on coffee and soft drinks
3. lots of delicious, point friendly foods with NI on their website
4. close to home
5. very relaxed atmosphere, comfy seats and quiet

Nothing else on the agenda today except working on my resume and two cover letters.  A job I have been waiting to be posted for almost a year, was finally posted last week and I want to ensure I at least get an interview.  I miss being a Corporate Trainer, I miss the people, the interaction, the organization, the follow up, the coaching and mentoring....I hadn't realised what a huge part of my life it was until I wasn't doing it anymore.  This position would be a return to that.  The second position is one that I heard about through a work contact and isn't actually posted but she mentioned it to me and suggested I send her my resume, so it can't hurt to network and keep options open.

I ended up using 30/26 points yesterday which is fine because I hadn't touched any weekly points as yet and I had undereaten the few days before. It all works out in the end. 

For breakfast today, I had an egg, Arnold's Sandwich Thin and a "fried tomato". It was delicious. I haven't made a breakfast like that for myself in ages, I've been eating alot of cereal and Carnation Breakfast shakes so real food was a treat :)  I think dinner is going to be roasted chicken and roasted vegetables.  Then I will have some chicken left over to make a wrap tomorrow with chicken, lettuce, cheese, tomatoes and tzaziki sauce for lunch.

I have been watching "I Dream of Jeannie" episodes on line while on the treadmill. I watch two episodes back to back and easily get in 40 minutes without even noticing.  "Major Nelson" (Larry Hagman) was my first little girl crush - I used to get my mom to do my hair up like Jeannies :) and then when Dallas came out, I think I was 9 or 10 and I fell head over heels for bad boy J.R.  And then all through high school I dated bad boys, but didn't end up with one - I am not sure how bad boys are for the long haul :) 

I swear I never know what I'm going to end up writing about .... I just start typing and it's as if my fingers are not connected to my brain and just type whatever they want :)

Have a great Sunday!

Nov 7, 2009

Saturday's Revelations

Morning World!

It looks cold outside. I haven't gone out yet though. It's supposed to be a lovely weekend in the Toronto area, Fall's last hurrah so I am planning to enjoy it with no real plan - just go with the flow and see where the weekend takes me.

I woke up starving this morning which is a good sign that my metabolism and blood sugar/insulin are on the right track.  I had some Flax Plus cereal which, in hindsight, was probably not the best choice. I find cereal leaves me feeling hungry in 1-2 hours, it has no staying power at all - probably because there isn't enough protein.  But I felt like something crunchy - so that's what I chose.

As I am sitting here at the family computer, I see mini-chocolate wrappers on the desk.  I just realised, I got through Halloween without eating ANY Halloween candy. This is definitely a lifetime first!!!  I had bought candy for shelling out and for my sons and some friends' children but I didn't eat even one piece.  I didn't even think about eating one piece. I didn't even mindlessly eat one piece!!!  Normally I eat an entire bag before Halloween even gets here - just one here and there - and before I know it, the bag is empty. I always have some of the boys' loot, but this year although it's been in the kitchen for a week now, I've walked by it and haven't even been tempted. This is truly a change in attitude about candy/chocolate.  In the past, I've made decisions not to have any and have had some success - but this year I didn't even need to think about it. It wasn't even on my radar.  It's also the first year that I didn't have several big, birthday dinners complete with chocolate fudge cake. This year was very low key, I had lunch with a friend and some ice cream at Coldstone and I was good. The next night my family wanted to take me out, but we made a nice dinner at home and watched a movie - no need for dessert. 

It's really interesting to see changes happening without even realising they are happening.

Nov 6, 2009

Friday - time for bed!

Where to start? It's not that I have alot to say, just that I have alot of things swirling around my brain right now.

Let me try this:
  • Good eating day today. 26/26 points
  • Picked up groceries for the weekend so I could, if I wanted to, not leave my house again til Monday morning 
  • Got two leads/heads up about new jobs that I am interested in applying for
  • Felt skinny and pretty and sexy all day (always a nice bonus!)
  • At 2:15 my boss said, why don't you go home, its been a long week - so I did
  • Had a great conversation with a friend
  • Am missing another friend terribly
  • Ripped a ton of CDs to my laptop so I have music for the treadmill
  • Found more episodes on line of "I Dream of Jeannie
I know, totally random, useless thoughts.

Hopefully I will be more coherent tomorrow!

Feeling Fine Friday

Good morning,

What a difference a day makes. Toronto is beautiful today. Blue skies, bright, bright sunshine and the lake is the colour of sapphires!

And I feel "good" today. Today is a "skinny" day, you know? I just feel good in my skin and I feel confident and pretty. No particular reason that I can think of, isn't it funny how that happens sometimes?

I found a scale I want, but I am going to get it next time I go to Buffalo shopping. It's at Target and measures body fat as well as weight and it has a memory.  It's only $29.99 which is about what I would spend here for a regular digital scale so I'm going to wait a bit longer, I'll be going over soon to do some Christmas shopping and I'll pick it up then.

I ate a little more yesterday 22/26 points. I will hit 26 today I think because I upped my breakfast points from the usual 4-5 to 7 so that will make a difference.  It was another early night last night and I woke up before my alarm. It was nice to lay in bed, all cozy and warm and just wait to get up instead of the alarm jangling me awake and then the mad rush. I am not a morning person. I used to be. Sometimes the ghost of my former morning-person-ness takes over and I get up early Saturday morning, shower, eat my breakfast and tackle cleaning the house before everyone else is up. 

Oh, I got home from work yesterday and Dennis and Iain had dinner ready! It was such a nice surprise.  Rotini pasta in homemade meat sauce with toasted french bread with roasted garlic spread.  Delicious!!!  It truly made my evening to walk in and have dinner waiting. No thinking, no work, just sit and enjoy.

No plans for this weekend. Housework, laundry, cook....the weather is supposed to stay beautiful so I will try and get in a walk somewhere and I think I am meeting a WW friend on Sunday for coffee at my favourite coffee shop, Panera Bread, at Square One.

Nov 5, 2009

Repeat of yesterday

Another stressful day today. 

At some point this cycle will end. 

Yesterday I ended up only using 18.5/26 points - not intentionally, but like I said, I tend to undereat when I'm stressed.  I'll try to make sure I hit 26 today.

I had the other Smart Ones Breakfast Quesadilla this morning (2 in a
box) and a Healthy Choice Gourmet Steamer (frozen entree) for lunch. So far so good, I've averted low or high blood sugar,  I am not hungry and I am not craving the muffins that are less than 5 feet away from me right now.

Even though the last few weeks have been crazy, I've managed to keep my blood sugar steady (with the exception of a few lows). This is so important to managing my weight and also to my mood and outlook on life.

Not sure what is up for dinner tonight - maybe chicken and some kind of rice. I will see what the boys want when I get home, although most of the time they eat whatever I make without too much comment.

I was in bed by 9 p.m. last night and slept til about 5 a.m. which is pretty good. I awoke to a dark, rainy, cold day in Toronto and as I was driving past the lake to work, the water looked like angry, rolling tar. It is definitely getting to be Winter.  I have plans to do some snow-shoeing with another WW once the snow hits. I've never done it, so I think that is going to be loads and loads of fun!

Enough rambling.

Nov 4, 2009

Making choices.

I have no idea where the time is going. The last 6-8 weeks have just flown by, I seem to have lost all track of time.  Coupled with some life disappointments and family health issues, I seem to be focusing less and less on me as each week goes by.

I have been so busy at work and home and tired! Last night I was in bed by 9 p.m. I didn't even stay up to see Biggest Loser, I will watch it on City TV tonight while I'm on the treadmill.

So through all this busy-ness I've found myself faced with so many choices because I've not been planning anything.  I haven't been planning because I've been so tired and just not organized at all.  

This morning, on my way to work, I made the choice to make better choices today.  I stopped at Loblaws and picked up the new WW Smart Ones Breakfast Quesadilla for breakfast and the Santa Fe Rice for lunch.  I'm not a huge fan of processed foods, but if the choice is between processed food and fast food, then I will choose a portion controlled, easily countable frozen dinner every time. 

The breakfast quesadilla is 4 points for one quesadilla and it is was good, crispy and filling - a little too salty for my taste - but nonetheless a good breakfast. I love the rice entree, and I've had it many times before.  Until I can get my life in order and start planning again, I'm not going to beat myself up for taking short cuts rather than eating crap. I used to post my food journal in my blog every day and then stopped when I joined WW on line, but I think I'm going to start doing that again. It puts it more front and centre and top of mind.

Crystal over at Bye Bye Fat Pants has said she will be walking as well for the Santa Shuffle.  So now that I have a walking buddy, I'm going to sign up today!

The other major thing on my TODO list is to buy a scale!!!  It dawned on me last night that I am going to get a new scale. A different scale. A scale that may not weigh the same as my old one. What if I find I've gained 5lbs? How will I know if its real or a scale differential?  Arghhhhhhhhhhhhhh. I was majorly stressing about it last night.  This morning, in the cold light of reasonableness - I am telling myself I've lost 37lbs so far from my start to my end weight with the old scale. Even if the new scale shows a different starting weight - as of tomorrow morning - nothing is going to take away all the hard work I've done in the last 10 months.  As well, I've not weighed myself in about 5-6 weeks - so it is possible I've gained 2-3 lbs although my waist is an inch smaller.

New scale. New start weight. New start. 199 here I come!

Nov 2, 2009

November Already?

It feels like this year is flying by.

So much happened this year - unfortunately not all of it good - but I think I am going to come out of it stronger, healthier and happier.

My weekend was all over the place, I had alot of running around to do and I was just not organized at all, so of course, my eating / exercise suffered.  I am feeling ok though so although I did make some poor choices, I am not suffering from too many carbs or too much fat - I can definitely "feel" when I've eaten that way now.  Actually, in retrospect, I didn't eat too badly -  I just ate on the run and I know I didn't eat every three-four hours.

Anyway, today got off to a better start and is continuing well.

I got an email from Andrea regarding the Santa Shuffle in Toronto the first weekend in December. She was inviting some of us GTA bloggers to join in with her.  My sister, who is a "runner" does this every year so I've emailed her to ask her if people walk or they are all runners. I know I can't run 5K..walking - a piece of cake :) but running - no I'll wait til I hear from Lou and see what she says about it.  I would love to do this with some other bloggers but I'm worried they will all run and I'll be the only one walking!  Will keep you posted.

Still no scale. My birthday came and went and I don't think I met my Onederland goal - but you know what? I'm ok with it. I'm taking one day at a time and doing the best I can...I *will* get to 199 and I will get to goal.

 I will have to get a scale though.  Alot of bloggers are recommitting to Weight Watchers by joining meetings again. I have been toying with the idea for a few weeks as well, but I don't think I can financially swing it and I am doing ok with the online version and I get alot of support from my blogging peeps - so I think I'm goin to keep going it on my own. In the New Year they normally have a $0 registration promotion so I will keep joining then in mind, especially after the decadence and food fest that the holidays will be!