Day 11 – Humpty Dance

J. and I went and got our nails done after I got off work. She had hers done fairly recently at a different place, but the work done wasn’t the best or J. is really hard on her nails. I took her back to our usual haunt and she got the BRIGHTEST neon green tips I think I have seen. As for me, usual French manicure. One of these days I’m going to break out of the “rut,” but I still don’t think I’ll go as whacky as I would have when I’m younger. I just think the French manicures look pretty sharp.

This is day three of officially feeling like crap. Excuse me while I bitch for just a moment, but I have to say that I have been hurting and while I have a doctor’s appointment next Tuesday, I’m not thrilled with having a hard time sitting. (So the only reason I got my nails done and sitting for an hour was because it had been almost a month and they had really started looking like crapola.) After sleeping all night and getting some rest, I’m actually okay, but somewhere around 10-11am, it gets uncomfortable. Hopefully the doc will have a solution that I can live with. (Keeping my fingers crossed here.)

I also watched American Idol. There were a couple of peeps I thought were really good. Jennifer Lopez looked gorgeous as always and Steven Tyler… ok….Let’s talk turkey. Is it just me or has he had some bad facework done to try to hide the signs of aging? I know Tyler / Aerosmith has been around for YEARS, but I was just a little spooked. And, frankly, it was even spookier to me to watch him leer at some of the PYT’s. Come on dude… really?

Health & Fitness #11 I walked around the PD a few times today, but that’s the extent of fitness. Still not quite feeling up to snuff and that was all the body would handle today. However, I figure that ANY movement is better than none at all. So, score one point for doing something proactive.

Feeding the Spirit #11

Family is just accident…. they don’t mean to get on your nerves. They don’t even mean to be your family, they just are.
– Marsha Norman

For whatever reason, this quote really spoke to me. It puts things in perspective and I’ve used it a few times to try to explain things to kids who are having troubles with family members. Rather fitting.

Day 10 – Rainy Days and Tuesdays…

I woke up to the wonderful smell of rain this morning. I love days like this and would love them even more if I could spend them in bed, in my jammies and reading a good book. There are really few things I enjoy doing more than reading and I think in that respect I’m blessed because so many people hate to read. I’ve found over the years that not only can books educate you, but they are such a source of imagination and inspiration. Ahhh… now I want to just pick up a novel and start reading, but alas, the reading I need to do now will just be police reports.

Life Lesson #10

“Life is what happens while you’re busy making other plans.”
– John Lennon

I love this quote. Not only does it remind me of Ferris Beuller’s Day Off and my teenage years, but it reminds me that we all need to stop and smell the roses from time to time. We need to take time to really assess what it is we want out of life and make some plans, but also plan to have those plans interrupted by unforseen events.

For example: Tonight we were supposed to get together with mom to finally celebrate my birthday. Who knew that Kate would stay home sick, Jess would go to the doc for x-rays on her thumb and I would feel like utter crap so I laid in bed pretty much after dinner. So, another rescheduling is in order and we shall see what happens. It’s nothing to get uber upset about, but proves that plans are just sometimes interrupted.

Health & Fitness #10 I will go more into this at a later date, but if you are looking for a workout to give you a killer bod – think Kettlebells. OUTSTANDING calorie burn, cardio and weights all in one.

Food & Drink #10 Unless I actually have something earth-shattering.. not really going to go into this category or the food log right now. I haven’t eaten anything really horrible, but as soon as I actually feel like sitting up longer, it’s easier. However this could change tomorrow. =)

Feeding the Spirit #10

Most people are about as happy as they make up their minds to be.
– Abraham Lincoln

I love this picture of a young Lincoln. I see a resoluteness and strength of character in this photo. As most pictures of the period, he doesn’t look “happy”, but I sense that he was a fairly happy individual because he chose to be. This is something we all need to do… choose to be happy.

Day 9 – Monday…

Work’s been quite busy today, but a couple of kids that have been missing for awhile were found. That’s always a good day no matter what else happens. I also got to go home at lunch and spend some time with J. We’ve been spending some good time together lately and I’ve got to say I love it. On the down side of the day, I feel “blah” and the heater is on at the office so it’s way the heck to hot to even think about working. I wish facilities would turn the heat off already. I’ve gone outside a couple of times to cool off, but really??? Given the choice though – I can say I don’t miss the 52 degree days in dispatch.

Life Lesson #9

In ordinary life we hardly realize that we receive a great deal more than we give, and that it is only with gratitude that life becomes rich.
— Dietrich Bonhoeffer

Health & Fitness #9 “Learn to relax. Your body is precious, as it houses your mind and spirit. Inner peace begins with a relaxed body.” Norman Vincent Peale

Inner peace was hard to come by. I tried to relax tonight and it didn’t go so well. Thankfully a pain pill helped the process and I finally got some rest.

I’m not going to list all the healthy choices I made today. I am going to admit my honey brought me a package of “get well” Twizzlers and I enjoyed every moment of them. I spent most of yesterday after work in bed and truly feeling under the weather. I’m not sick, but I am hurting and not a fan of that. Hopefully the doctor will have good news for me on the 25th.
More later…

Day 8 – It’s all about the "New"

“How can you do anything until you have seen everything,or as much as you can?” — Rudyard Kipling

I love this quote because it always inspires me to get out and do something or to hear something or to see something. I’m still not quite feeling up to snuff today; however, the goal for the day is to do or see something I haven’t done or seen before. It’s quite the challenge, but I think like yesterday, the key will be in the little things, not the big things. However, if someone wants to rent me a room at the Bellagio in Vegas, I haven’t seen or done that. (Just a suggestion mind you.)

I did try something new already today and I’m not going to count that as my “new” thing. Quinoa for breakfast. I had a package of white quinoa in the pantry. I bought it because there’s a whole bunch of health / nutrition sites that tout it’s marvelousity. I can say that I’m not a fan at this point and I think I’ll just stick with good old-fashioned oatmeal. It’s got kind of a nutty flavor that’s not bad, but it definitely required other things to make it edible. I ate mine with some vanilla, all-spice and agave nectar. The recipe had called for berries, which I didn’t have. It also called for nuts such as pecans, walnuts or almonds. I chose not to put them in because they are so high in fat. Maybe either of those would have made it better, I don’t know. I do know I’m not eating this concoction again. I choked down half a cup cooked. That’s enough. I had one of the oatmeal cookies I ate yesterday to get the taste out of my mouth. I find that to be a great decision.

Life Lesson #8

“The biggest mistake people make in life is not trying to make a living at doing what they most enjoy.” — Malcolm Forbes

This has been kind of an on-going struggle at our little yellow house. Kyle and I were discussing this yesterday. I can honestly say I have done a lot of things I enjoy and probably have had more different jobs than anyone else. The years of being a disc-jockey, roadie-ing for some bands, working at the TV station, being a reporter, running an advertising agency, being a PD Dispatcher (to name but a few)… all things that I enjoyed. However, I have to admit that I always wanted to be two other things #!) a writer and #2) a cop. I figure I’m meeting the writing goal with the blog and while I don’t carry a badge and a gun, I’m an investigator with the PD and that’s pretty awesome. I could end up making my living writing, certainly not in the present, but maybe someday and I’m enjoying the daylights out of my job now – helping to hunt down the missing children. It’s a reward all it’s own and I like to think I’m making a difference.

Unlike me, Kyle has done pretty much the same thing for the past 20 years. God has given him a gift to be able to do the amazing post-production that he does. I have to admire that kind of tenacity.

Health & Fitness #8 “Any healthy man can go without food for two days–but not without poetry.” — Baudelaire

Like I stated earlier, I have always wanted to be a writer. It occurred to me however that I always HAVE been a writer. I’ve kept a journal since I was seven years old. I have written news articles and started novels (which at some point I’ll be able to focus and finish) and written more poems than I know what to do with. In fact, it’s the poetry that I love. Being able to bend a word to your will is a pretty incredible feeling. One of these days I’ll have to share, but for now my insecurities shall remain.

Food & Drink #8 I may let this part of my “new” blog go, but for now all I’m going to write is “quinoa sucks.”

Food tally for the day:
Breakfast: Quinoa w/all-spice, vanilla and agave nectar and an oatmeal cookie chaser
Morning Snack: Apple and a cheese stick
Lunch: Tilapia, veggies and salad
Afternoon Snack: TBA
Dinner: TBA

Feeding the Spirit #8

“I believe God is managing affairs and that He doesn’t need any advice from me. With God in charge, I believe everything will work out for the best in the end. So what is there to worry about.” — Henry Ford

Day 7 – The Day of Rest

No cause for celebration yet, but it’s a pretty good day. I saved about $50 at the grocery store between coupons and in-store specials. That’s always good. I had a long chat with Kyle about life, which is another plus to the day. Now, I’m sitting here on a Saturday morning and while I’ve been slightly productive, I want a nap. I may just take one this afternoon…

Oh look… it’s later…

Instead of an immediate nap, which I really wanted and eventually got, I spent some time with J. and made cookies. I made some fairly healthy (all things considered) oatmeal cookies and she made good old-fashioned chocolate chip. So… the rest of the day’s meals (with the utmost of honesty) was cookies. Outstanding.

Life Lesson #6 It’s the little things that matter. I spent time today with J making cookies. I realized it’s the little, every-day things that make a difference at the end of the day. People don’t really care what you buy for them or really how much you DO for them. They appreciate the time you have spent with them. Today’s mission is to spend more time with the family.

We have really re-started doing this. For a long time at dinner we would each grab a plate and go our own ways. Fairly recently, dinner is at the table as a family. I really do cherish those moments because I get to find out more about my honey and my kids that maybe I wouldn’t have found out. And… the most recent discovery is that we all hate peas. Ok… Kyle could eat the peas as long as they are disguised completely with another food, but really… I have to say BLAHHHHH.

Health & Fitness #6 No tips for the day, just the complaint that I haven’t worked out (again?”) because of some health issues I am having. I spent the evening in bed relaxing. K. came and curled up with me (as it were) and we watched house together after she got home from an orchestra deal. It was nice. (Remember that spend time together thing?)

Food & Drink #6 Nothing new to report here. So I won’t.

Food tally for the day:
Breakfast: Healthy Choice TV Dinner: Golden Roasted Turkey
Morning Snack:
Lunch: About 4-5 oz of chicken breast (no skin), 1 serving of Barilla Plus spaghetti noodles flavored with Mrs. Dash and 1/2 cup of Asian medley veggies
Afternoon Snack: cookies
Dinner: More cookies

Feeding the Spirit #

The moment you don’t feel like praying, get on your knees. And the moment you don’t feel like reading your bible, you’d better get that Book open. — Lori Wick

Day 6 – Sweet Friday

I’m grateful this work week is almost over. It’s been unusually stressful and I’m not sure if the stressers were external or internally motivated. I’m thinking (depending on what’s going on with the family) tonight I’m goint to take a long, hot, bubbly bath and do nothing other than relax.

And… for whatever reason the sugar cravings returned with a vengence.I am scarfing down some beans and rice so that I don’t participate in the consumption of something REALLY bad for me. *Sigh*

Life Lesson #6 “Self-reliance is a vital key to living a healthy, productive life. To be self-reliant one must master a basic set of skills, more or less making them a jack of all trades. Contrary to what you may have learned in school, a jack of all trades is far more equipped to deal with life than a specialized master of only one.” I have to admit I stole this quote today because it’s true. However, if you want to read a really good blog that follows it:

Health & Fitness #6 Fire the maid. Studies suggest that women today are more overweight and less fit that women in the 50’s. One reason is we depend more on electronic appliances then doing work ourselves. Simple daily chores burn a large amount of calories. In fact, vacuuming for an hour burns 90 calories, gardening will kill 150 calories and cooking can actually burn up to 160 calorie (under the assumption of course you do not take a bite of what you are making avery five minutes.)

Food & Drink #6 Water – the ultimate weight loss supplement. I have had more water to drink in the last week than I think I have had in the previous three months. Granted, there has been a bit of Crystal Light mixed in, along with herb teas and the like, but I can honestly say that I haven’t had a diet coke in quite some time and no carbonated beverages in over a week. Another step in the right direction. (Said while I’m sipping some herb tea…) I’m really hoping to continue this water trend even though my bladder hates me.

Food tally for the day:
Breakfast: Quaker Apple / Cinnamon oatmeal. 1 cup of water
Morning Snack: 1/2 Zone Dark Chocolate bar & 4 cups of water
Lunch: McDonalds Grilled Chicken Caesar salad, basalmic vinagarette w/ herb tea and McDonalds fruit and walnut salad
Afternoon Snack:1/2 cup refried beans and 1/2 cup rice
Dinner: 2 scrambled eggs and 3 biscuits (no butter or jelly) and strangely enough 1oz of mixed nuts

Feeding the Spirit #

I am learning all the time. The tombstone will be my diploma.
– Eartha Kitt

Daddy used to say that he really didn’t care much what happened as long as he learned something new everyday. I used to tell him when I worked for him, “Ooooh, I just learned something new! Can I go home now?” He never let me because he said there was probably something else I needed to learn before I did. Often times, that was the case.

Day 5 – Cinco de Cel

I was talking to a friend about the theoretical question: Would you rather be deaf or blind? I don’t know if it’s strange or not, but that’s a hard question for me to answer, but answer I did. I chose deafness. Trust me, I pray for neither. However, to never see the sunrise, to see my daughters and someday their children or to drive was a more unbearable thought than to greatly miss all of the great music in the world, the birds singing in the trees and the sound of a gentle spring rain. However, my friend said she would choose to be blind. When I raised the eyebrow and asked why her answer was interesting to me. She said without vision she could “see” past another person’s physical attributes which would make her a less judgemental person and therefore a better person. I agreed that could be the case. Then surprisingly, she said, “Isn’t that the way God is?” God does judge us for our actions, but he “sees” us with his heart. This is definitely a good point to ponder for a bit.

Life Lesson #5 Marry your best friend. It’s helpful in those moment where you literally trip and fall and they don’t laugh at you nearly as much.

Health & Fitness #5 Not feeling quite up to snuff at the moment. Earlier tonight was out with the hubby walking the dog and had some pain pop into the picture in a way I hadn’t quite anticipated. Made it home, went to bed and here I am because I was woken up and I can’t go back to sleep (hate that.) Hopefully will feel like sleeping shortly.

Food & Drink #5 No words of wisdom today. However, I did rely on some processed protein type bars to help keep hunger at bay. First time in awhile I met my protein requirements. The Zone bars are probably my favorite and one especially is the Chocolate Mint. They have inklings of Girl Scout Cookies attached.

Food tally for the day:

Breakfast: 1 Cup of Light Chocolate Silk and a Kashi Go lean Chocolate Truffle “roll” (190/12) and 6 grams of fiber (probably an important part of being healthy.)
Morning Snack: 20 grapes (Yum), 15 baby carrots and a cheese stick
Lunch: Tuna and a Zone Dark Chocolate bar. (Kept me away from the cookies and candy.)
Afternoon Snack: Small rice krispie snack (Literally two bites.)
Dinner: Smaller portion of spaghetti, whole wheat noodles, and veggies

Feeding the Spirit # We need to find God, and he cannot be found in noise and restlessness. God is the friend of silence. See how nature – trees, flowers, grass – grows in silence; see the stars, the moon and the sun, how they move in silence… We need silence to be able to touch souls.
Mother Teresa

Day 4 – Silliness, gotta love it!

It’s 0638 hours and I’m a little sore this morning from the “workout” last night. It was definitely unconventional, but that can be outstanding. One of my daughters and I pushed back the dining room table and used the space to just dance and be silly. Between the heater being on and the movements we worked up enough of a sweat last night that we had to open the back door and let in some cool air. I can’t airwalk (yet), can kind of moonwalk, can definitely “cupid shuffle”, can’t break-dance, and can just move until I can’t move any more. It was a blast and I think spending time with J. was more fun than just getting my groove on. (BTW – the groove is a little rusty. It’s been like 20 years since I’ve been clubbing…) Time for a hot shower and to start the day…

Life Lesson #4 Make new friends but keep the old. If you haven’t been in touch with a good friend for awhile. Now is a great time to write a note, shoot an email or just plain call. It’s important we keep in contact with those near and dear to us. I was reminded of this today when I went to a friend’s retirement party. So take 5 minutes and get in touch with someone you haven’t talked to for awhile.

Health & Fitness #4 I talked with a good friend today who, like me, is tired of feeling the way we feel and probably tired of feeling a little more “round” too. I’m thinking we need to buddy up and hit the gym. This would require actually GOING to the gym, but I’m totally game for that. Change means stepping out of our comfort zones and my comfort zone hasn’t been the gym for almost 3 years. That’s too long.

Food & Drink #4 Recommendation for the day: Muscle Milk LIGHT. The light version has fewer calories than the regular version and fewer grams of protein, but at 20 grams of protein, it’s a pretty easy way to feel full and get some extra vitamins and minerals the body needs. I actually prefer the chocolate, but the vanilla today wasn’t too bad. I know there are folks that drink Slim Fast and nothing against it, but at 30 fewer calories,5 more grams of protein, (and this is Slim Fast’s “high protein shake”) and more nutrients added, Muscle Milk seems to me a much better option.

I’m also a sucker for fun things written on food / drink packaging. My bottle of Muscle Milk said, “If you enjoy feeling dull, overweight and lethargic put this bottle down, pick up that donut and prepare to cry yourself to sleep on the couch again… Good, you’re still reading. Muscle Milk light is a perfect grab and go option that provides and excellent source of protein, fiber, vitamins and minerals for helthy sustained energy, appetite contol and a revived mind. We can’t say it’s magic in a bottle, but it’s close.” I love truth in advertising.

Food tally for the day:
Breakfast: Muscle Milk Light Protein Shake (Vanilla!) (160/20)
Morning Snack: 2 scrambled eggs (200 / 13.5)w/ a tablespoon of salsa and 2 strips of bacon (92/6)
Lunch:Chik-Filet – 6 nuggets & 1 chicken strip (275 / 27),1T. BBQ Sauce, and 1 cup of fresh fruit. I also had about 3/4 cup of sweet tea. As this was Susan’s retirement party, I thought this was an excellent choice of foodage as I didn’t have anything sweet to eat and the cake looked yum-a-licious.
Afternoon Snack:Pretty, little Granny Smith apple
Dinner: 1 slice of pizza and 1 homemade rice krispie treat. Not outstanding, but kept within the bounds of reason.

Feeding the Spirit #” The only thing that separates any one of us from excellence is fear and the opposite of fear is faith. I am careful not to confuse excellence with perfection. Excellence I can reach for, perfection is God’s business.”
Michael J. Fox

Day 3 – Just thinking …

Have you ever had one of those mornings where you want to listen to music on the radio and the morning DJ’s just won’t shut up? This was one of those mornings. For a few minutes my desperation reached almost Biblical proportions on the way to work and I was listening to Tejano music. Then reason kicked back in and I found myself listening to “Life in a Northern Town” once that station came back out of commercial. It was appropriate because it’s 5 degrees outside with a wind-chill of 4 below. This is proof I need to get my XM radio up and running and a pair of either thermal undies or winter-weight pants. Something in cordoroy or wool would be nice.

Life Lesson #3 Today’s a parenting tip. Because of what I do I find many parents don’t understand one little IMPORTANT lesson. Lift up, don’t bring down. Empower your children and grandchildren so they will understand there is a big, bright future to be earned and they don’t have to accept mediocrity. If you don’t know where to start, here’s how it’s done. Start with the words, “I believe in you;” and believe what you are saying.

Food and Drink #3 Something to try: “ThinkThin” bars. The one I’m chowing on now is “Brownie Crunch.” No sugar and 20 grams of protein / 230 calories. It’s a good option for when you need a little something to eat and don’t want to down a snickers bar which has about the same number of calories, but not the vitamins and protein the ThinkThin bars do. It’s not quite as yummy, but equally as satisfying in the hunger department.

Food for the day:
Hot tea and pineapple for breakfast
Morning “snack” – ThinkThin Bar
Lunch: 1/2 chicken breast, 1 cup of Spanish Rice and a cup of broccoli cheese soup. YUM!!!
Dinner: 4oz Sole, Stuffed baked potato and about 2 tablespoons of peas w/cheese. BLECH!!!!

I can actually say the only sweet thing I have had to eat today is 2 red hots. The problem with me eating sugar is my body immediately thinks it needs to have a LOT more. Fortunately, today wasn’t craving sweets like I have been.

Health & Fitness #3 If you are looking to quell the junk food habit, there’s a “new” study out on something that will help you achieve that goal. Pay with cash. The study showed that only 14 percent of people use cash to grocery shop. Ressearchers think t this could be one of the many factors behind America’s expanding waistlines. Apparently, charging or using a debit card is less emotionally charged than the more immediate and uncomfortable act of parting with hard-earned greenbacks.

Thomas, M. et al., Journal of Consumer Research 2010 Oct 6; doi:10.1086/657331.

I’ve noticed when I pay in cash, I am much more apt to stay away from those inner grocery store isles of temptation and stay on the perimeter where the “good for you” things are located.

Finally… gearing up for tonight’s workout. Tired of looking in the mirror and wondering how I got round. My daughter and I went for a walk and walked each of the dogs earlier. It’s 27 degrees out and one of the puppies is old so we only went a total of about 3 blocks, but that’s okay, Biggest Loser workout still to come.

Day 2

0139 hours Most experts agree that eating protein, carbs and a little fat with each meal makes for a well-sated appetite and unfortunately, I know I didn’t eat near the protein yesterday that I should have. So… I get to start this post early in the day because obviously I didn’t eat the proper foods yesterday. (What a sad realization.) So I just got done drinking a cup of Light Chocolate Silk (90) and eating 2 blueberry Eggo Waffles (190) with 1 tsp. of butter . Not quite the well-thought out process, but there is quite a bit of protein in the Silk and the rest should be covered. I’m not quite as hungry now and I think all things considered I should be able to get some sleep. G’Night…

1153 hours. I came home for lunch so that I could 1) not eat at my desk, which is oddly enough what I’m doing at the house and 2) eat some leftover chicken soup which has got to be healthy. And I have to say I had a SMALL portion of the apple/oatmeal concoction. This might make up for the fact that I did cheat this morning and had 5 mini oreo cookies and 3 Giradeli (sp) dark chocolate squares. I consider this progress because I want to eat a whole bag of the big oreo cookies and a Snickers Bar. I don’t know if the two glasses of water I drank at work offset that at all, but any progress is good progress.

Which leads me to Life Lesson #2 Don’t beat yourself up if you slip and fall. The point is to get back up and start right where you left off. You don’t have to wait to make changes till the next day, til a Monday, til the cows come home. Start right then and there to make the changes you want to make.

Health and Fitness #2 I did park as far away from the building today to get some exercise in. Actually, I didn’t. I was forced into it because it’s 21 degrees outside and I got there after the early birds. I did however run to the building from the parking lot and then take the stairs and that’s something positive about exercise that we all can do. Add some umph… take two or three stairs at a time. Going up you will definitely feel the “burn” in your backside.

Secondarily to this burning backside moment or primarily (hard to tell,) I did week one of Bob Harper’s Boot Camp Workout tonight. Felt the burn and worked up a sweat. After I got done, Kyle did the same workout. Solidarity!?!? And frankly, if we both can walk tomorrow it will be a good thing. Tally-ho!

Food and Drink #2 I know I have talked a bit about what I have eaten today. However, I thought I would pass along a few things that you may or may not know about those appetizers we know and love.
1) Worst Dips: Spinach Artichoke: 326 calories and 21 grams of fat!
Brie: 401 calories and 33 grams of fat (This is more fat than 2 jelly donuts
2) Better Choices: Hummus: Avg 240 calories and 14 grams of fat (and protein packed!)
Guacamole: 200 calories and 16 grams of fat (homemade… without oil or sour-cream that’s often added in the store bought kind for thickening.

The one and single most important thing in any lifestyle change is to couple the changes you make with drinking plenty of water. Yes, I have had my 8 cups today and yes, I feel like my bladder has taken a trip down the Mississippi. However, it’s one of two ways to get the toxins you build up in your body out. The other of course is exercise.

An exercise we all need is to become more aware of the majesty of the things around us. I can’t help but marvel at all the colors in the sunrise, the individuality of the snowflakes and the drifting fog that floated overhead this morning. I know some say there is no God. I look at this and say, “Prove to me that there isn’t.” Genesis 1.1: In the beginning God created the heavens and the earth. How awesome.

A final note for the day. Great song to just relax to with a cup of hot tea: “A Place Called Home” by Kim Richey. Check her out and let the cares of the day just wash away.

Words are as air… one cannot survive without them.