Archive for the ‘Musings’ Category

Umpteenth time is a charm?

2 January 2012

I am not even sure off the top of my head when the last time I wrote a post was…a long time ago, I know that. I’ve had a lot of personal stuff going on the last few months and that derailed my plans and intentions for a number of different things over the last 7 months. :-/ However, I find writing my blog posts to be therapeutic and fun, so I am going to try to revive the blogger in me.

I will be posting about all sorts of different things, but as my life seems to be pretty much focused on grad school/career and trying to get fit/eating healthfully, I will more than likely focus the greater number of my posts on those things.

I don’t know how often I’ll get a chance to post – I’m going to aim for about every other day, but will have to wait and see how life is going once the new semester starts up. 🙂


back from the abyss

24 September 2010

So it’s been about 2 whole months since I’ve blogged a menu or anything for that matter. Ugh – sometimes life gets kinda crazy and if you don’t take the time to slow it down and breathe, it just keeps on going – y’know?

What have I been up to that’s so crazy the last two months? Well, really, a lot of things have been taking up my time and energy.

After posting that last time in July, I was hardcore looking for a dreaded J-O-B. When I wasn’t doing that, I was deep cleaning my house and planning an awesome vacation for my BFF Jen and her husband Pete, August 6 – 20. We had an amazing time together, full of being a tourist in my hometown, lots of spending time with family and friends and a road trip to St Louis and Chicago! It was Pete’s first time in America – and I wanted to make a good impression so that he’d not hesitate to come back! 🙂

That Friday, the 20th, after Jen and Pete returned to England, we went out to celebrate Ade’s birthday (Ade is Jen’s brother and my sister-in-law’s husband!). Saturday the 21st, husband and I volunteered in the beer tent at a local festival. Monday the 23rd I started an MA program in Curriculum & Instruction with an emphasis in Teaching English as a Second or Other Language.

On the 24th, my brother’s wife had a baby girl. 🙂 Thursday the 26th we adopted a new puppy that a friend needed to re-home.

This week, my ratbaby, Calliope, died and my nephew’s fiancee had a baby girl- all in the same day.

In between daily housework, school work, looking for a job, and puppy training, the blog I was never very good at keeping fell by the wayside. A lot of other habits I was trying to make – but wasn’t doing such a hot job with – also fell off, like my Weight Watchers. :-/ Today, I’ve decided to slow my roll and get back in touch with my personal goals and more in tune with myself.

I’m feelin’ pretty good about today so far – though it seems like I haven’t really gotten a lot accomplished by the looks of the house, but I’ve made some preliminary framework plans to keep on top of everything over the next few months. I’ve done the dishes! (I HATE doing dishes!) and I’ve made biscuits and sweet tea as well as started a menu plan and pruned a couple of the plants which survived my brown thumb over the summer. 🙂

Expect more posts from me here on out – in fact I’m going to try to get a menu plan up here in a bit. I have to go to the grocery store, so might as well plan my menu for next week, eh? 😉

I’m trying to figure out how best to upload pix, but I’m such a n00b when it comes to the technical stuff of a blog that it’ll take me a minute to figure it out.

good intentions…

2 July 2010

So, Thursday didn’t go quite as I had planned – and that was my fault. I did get some things done. I did go to a Weight Watchers meeting. I did not, however, workout at all. 😦

But, I have good intentions for my roadtrip. I have gathered and labeled all sorts of healthy and nutritious and yummy foods to take with me so that I don’t have to stop at a fast food place or grab crap from a gas station.

I’ve got: Fresh Italian Bread. Small cartons of Stonyfield Organic Chocolate Oikos. Chocolate chunk Hazelnut biscotti granola. tomato basil tuna medley. Multiseed Organic flatbread crackers. Wildberry Organic fruit leather. grape tomatoes. double gloucester cheese. chunk white albacore tuna mixed with spin blend and onion. grapes. bananas. strawberries.

Every item (you can see it on the nanners!) is labeled with a points value so there is NO excuse for me to not track! And for the crackers, I took every cracker out of the package and portioned them into snack bags and labeled each snack bag. 🙂

This is way more food than I’ll need for my drive to the Dallas area, but I figure that I can snack on this stuff all weekend in San Antonio and on the way back home Monday. 🙂 I’m having lunch in Austin with a friend on Monday, so I’ll just need dinner sometime between lunch and getting home….I don’t know if I can do tuna again – we’ll see. I might need to stop and get a Salad!

I might take my Barney Butter with me too – and I have an avocado  I forgot I to include in the mix. If I don’t take it, husband won’t remember to eat it before it goes bad while I’m out of town!

I also am packing my cooler with Smart Water (never had it, but big bottles on sale at Target) and a 4-pack of Izze Sparkling Blackberry. I’ll also for sure be taking my 2 trusty water bottles for  regular ol’ water. 🙂 (maybe I’ll dig out another one – I love me some water!)

I’m taking Gwyneth (my laptop), so I’ll probably be checking in over the weekend! 😀

Road Trip!

No more excuses!

1 July 2010

So, I’ve been super bad about life, lately. I’m not exactly sure what my deal is, but I’ve been uninspired, unmotivated and unsuccessful with my health goals. (okay, so I *do* know how the unsuccessful came about..)

I had joined the blogroll of the Plus Size Bloggers Summer 15 Challenge as another means of keeping myself accountable – the program started on June 15, and I’ve yet to post. :-/ I’m going to change all that tonight, however.

Mindful Menus

I’ve also been on the blogroll for the Chivetalkin’ Mindful Menus, but I’ve been bad about posting there too. Menu Planning has become my kryptonite – well, planning in general; I’m not a good planner.

Thinking about it, now, off the top of my head, I think that my unfruitful job search has not only frustrated me, but brought down my feelings of self-esteem and self-worth a few notches – which is considerable, since neither of those were very high to begin with. 😦 I’ve not properly tracked my meals or planned my meals in a month! A MONTH! I’ve also not exercised in like 2 – aside from a handful of random episodes. I know that exercising and taking control of my food intake through planning and tracking will make me feel better and help me reach my health and fitness goals – I’m finding it quite difficult, however, to get started. *le sigh*

One of the reasons I’m blogging, is not because I’m an attention-whore (far from it!) but because I feel like I am less able to deceive myself if I’m publishing it for the world to see. I am a terrible liar and I make it a habit to never lie to people, however, I seem to work  VERY hard at deceiving myself. o_O Also, I hope that I can help inspire other people who might come across my little blog. 🙂


My Plan:


Daily: Track every B.L.T. and Meal properly.

Weekly: Plan out every Meal – not just sketching out dinners. Make it easy for myself to keep this up by creating “old standbys”


Daily: Make it a priority to get some sort of physical activity

Weekly: Get a true workout in at least 3x week for 45min each.

Monthly: log at least 750 minutes of exercise/activity

Personal Challenges

Blog a few times per week about how this is going – to keep me accountable and prevent me from slipping into bad habits.

Incorporate the bounty of the season into my menu and exercise plans. 🙂

Try new healthy foods every month.

Attend a group exercise class.

Always go to a weekly Weight Watchers meeting.


These might seem lofty goals seeing as I’m currently in a rut, but I think they are totally attainable.

Now, without further ado, let me do one of the most embarrassing things ever – post my weight. o_O

Like  I said, the Plus Size Bloggers Summer 15 Challenge started June 15, and I’ve yet to post anything. So, to give some sort of reference point, I’m going to give my starting weight as the one from June 12 – the last record I have and the closest to June 15.

Starting Weight: 233 lbs.

(official Weight Watchers weight on 6/12 in the morning)

Current Weight: 238 lbs.

(unofficial home weight, taken around midnight 7/1)

Change: +5

oy. not tracking and not eating mindfully has taken its toll in a very short time. 😦 However,  I will NOT let this get me down – though I might not drop 15 pounds by July 15, I will drop some pounds by then!

menu musings and bein’ blue

27 June 2010

Blue is a really funny word when you look at it, isn’t it? It’s not so funny when it’s how you feel, though. 😦 I’ll get to that in a minute, I don’t want the whole post to be depressing.

So, last week’s menu – the only thing i stuck to was the meatloaf – and I regretted it. The meatloaf *tasted* ok, but the texture was all wrong. it was awful. I ended up getting an Amy’s frozen pizza Tuesday night and Thursday was the start of dogsitting duties. I had originally thought they started Friday, but I was mistaken.

I went to Red Robin with my Aunt for dinner Thursday night – we both got the Honey Mustard Chicken Sandwich, which is on special right now. It was sooo good – I hope they keep it! I also got a BLTA croissantwich to go for Friday food, but hubby ended up staying at our friends’ place withe me Thursday night and I let him eat it for dinner.

Friday, since I didn’t have my sammie anymore, I went to Panera and got a “you pick two” deal: the Strawberry-Poppyseed salad with Chicken and Bacon-Turkey Bravo with a side of Multi-Grain bread. I ate the salad and bread for lunch and the sammie for dinner with some Food Should Taste Good Sweet Potato Chips I had picked up at Nature’s Pantry.

Saturday, I went home for a few hours and ended up going to dinner with hubby at Outback Steakhouse – it was sooo good.

I’m already starting to think of a menu plan for this week – and we HAVE to follow it. I’m not allowing us to NOT follow it. 😛

Now, for the sad part.

Thursday night, I brought my boxers, Helmut and Julia, over to my friends’ place with me. I rounded up 2 of their 3 dogs and my 2 and put them in the “community” kennel before  I went to my nephew’s baseball game. I came home a few hour later, and my baby girl, Julia, was dead in the kennel. 😦

She, as boxers are prone, had a few issues, but nothing life-threatening – so it’s really a mystery as to why she died that night. She was acting 100% normal even as i put her in the kennel. When we took her to the vet, Dr Rose said that she’s pretty confident that it was cardiomyopathy, which has no symptoms and happens quickly. I can only hope that it did happen quickly – Julia was our baby girl and I can’t bear the thought of her suffering.

In Memoriam: Baroness Julia von Bottshausen

my baby girl.


6 June 2010
I’m pretty disappointed with myself overall in the last few weeks. I want to blame the heat. My brother being in the hospital. Anything but myself, really. But, I know that I am the only one who can be blamed for my actions and attitude of late.

I haven’t been to the gym in ages. I haven’t been physically active in ages, either. I know that’s why I have had such small losses, and that combined with my NOT tracking at all last week contributed to my 1 pound gain at WI yesterday.

I’d determined at WI yesterday that I was gonna change my ‘tude – cos nothing was gonna go my way with the one I was sporting.

Today was the Walk-It Challenge and I was gonna be up at English Landing Park at 7am with the other KC area WWers and Walk It! That didn’t happen.

My brother plays for the MO Mustangs, a team in the Central Plains Football League, and they were playing in the semi-finals last night. Husband and I went to the 5 o’clock game – and didn’t get home until almost 11pm!

The game was nearly 4.5 hours long – and we had some tire issues to check on and a grocery store run to make.

By the time we were home, dinner eaten, and chillaxed a little bit so I could sleep, it was 1am. I went ahead and set my alarm for 6am (I live REALLY close to the park) and got my things together to head up to the Walk It Challenge. It took FOREVER for me to fall asleep – it wasn’t until well after 2am when I did finally fall asleep.

When the alarm went off at 6, I knew that there was no way I was gonna make it to the park.

I’d decided to hit the gym this evening, after I attended my nephew’s 12th birthday party. By the time the party was done and I was leaving, I was shattered and couldn’t imagine facing the gym – so I copped out and went home.

At this point, I want to blame my friend whom I tried to get to meet me there and pointedly ignored me. but I can’t since I could’ve gone alone.

I’ve done NOTHING since coming home other than veg out on the couch and watch a movie and did some computer work. I should’ve worked out.

I am constantly tired…partly to do with my inactivity, partly to do with not taking my meds like I should. I know exercise would help, but I just can’t seem to get off my duff to do it.

tomorrow’s another day…just cos i messed up today doesn’t mean I can’t have a great day tomorrow.

MIA the last week of May

6 June 2010

I totally missed posting last week. My baby brother, Timothy (27), wrecked his Harley the afternoon of Saturday 29 May and landed himself in the hospital for most of a week. :-/

Here’s what happened, from what he and his girlfriend, Laura (who was riding with him) told me:

They were riding back to their house after running an errand for our mom. They were going along a fairly busy street at about 35 – 40 mph, he turned his head to check if he was clear to change lanes. The 3 cars in front of him must have braked quickly – as he had just turned his head back to the front and had to make emergency stopping preparations.

My brother is a big boy, about 6’2″, 270#; his girlfriend, is quite petite – maybe 5’4″ and 120#. His main thought was to make sure to keep himself between Laura and danger.

He hit the side of the first car in front of him and threw his fist through the back windshield, but kept his bike upright. The second car in front of him must have spazzed out, because they pulled out of line, which ended up putting it right in the path of my brother’s bike, and he hit it too. He *almost* kept it upright after the second impact, but he ended up laying it down.

Though he ended up having a slight cut to his liver and a rather damaged spleen, he had no further injuries other than road rash and Laura got out with only some road rash.

Just after the accident, he felt fine and they ended up going on to their house. Within about an hour and a half of being home, he realised something was wrong and had the good sense to go to the hospital. The first hospital they went to weren’t equipped for the trauma level he was needing, so they ambulanced him to a second hospital where he spent about 3 hours in the Trauma unit of the ER before being released to ICU for just over 2 days.

Apparently, the spleen is a pretty important organ. It is an emergency blood reservoir, and in humans, stores platelets to assist in clotting (thanks for the info WiseGeek).  Though, at first, they were having some difficulty encouraging my brother’s spleen to stop bleeding, they didn’t want to remove it. Once it stabilized, he got to move to a regular hospital room.

Tim was released from the hospital Thursday morning, and other than not lifting anything over 20 pounds for the next 6 weeks and being rather sore and beat up feeling, he’s ok.

I tell you this story so that if you are a bike rider, be it Harley, Yamaha or Schwinn – be very careful. As a friend from BrightKite put it the other day, “consider yourself invisible.” My brother is a good rider – and from what I understand from other riders, he did all the right things to get out of the situation without incident.

Wear a helmet; even if your state doesn’t require a helmet to be worn by law. It might look goofy, but it will help protect you in an accident. You’ll look goofier if you have to have reconstructive surgery after an accident in which you were not wearing a helmet.

Make sure you wear the right attire when on your motorcycle. Shorts and sandals are NOT appropriate. I’d think twice about wearing a tanktop alone, too.

Harley riders usually seem to be conscientious and mannered riders; however sport bike riders, like Kawasakis etc, don’t usually seem to be so thoughtful when they ride. It is NOT intelligent to weave between cars on the highway, or any road for that matter, at 120 mph. Use common sense  when you’re riding.

I’m nervous as hell to drive near people on motorcycles, because you never know what can happen to them – and you can guess, that I’m even more nervous to be ON one.

Okay, I’m off my soapbox about motorcycle safety. back to regularly scheduled programming.

Winners never Quit

26 May 2010

Confession: I have body image issues. I’ve had them almost as long as I can remember.

Charlotte Astrid's Flickr stream

Does this measuring tape make me look fat?

Is that a big surprise? The majority of women in industrialized countries share my plight – whether they are thick, thin, obese, healthy, skinny, sick… In my opinion, there’s a huge problem with that, but that’s a topic for  a better thought out post in the future. This post is to clear my head and document my success.

So, what do I do in order to tackle the body-image monster? I meet it head on. Two weeks ago today, I re-joined Weight Watchers. I’ve been a member of Weight Watchers on-and-off since 2004 – with varying degrees of success. I have heard, observed and learned first-hand that the degree of success one achieves as a Weight Watcher (WWer) is in direct correlation to the degree of dedication that WWer has to meet goal. To quote a popular WWer mantra, “The Program works IF you work the Program.”


It can be easy to feel overwhelmed and frustrated when starting to revamp your lifestyle, but if you take it in small bites it becomes much more manageable. Well, at least for me, it is. 🙂 I think that my all-or-nothing mentality has been a detriment to my work toward the total revamping of my diet and overall lifestyle – I kept getting bogged down in the details and losing sight of the finish line.

No more: I will no longer allow myself to get lost in the overwhelming ball-pit of details. I will build up my healthy lifestyle block by block, rather than trying to do it all at once – and I will make myself accept responsibility and ownership for my decisions. I will hold myself accountable instead of trying to find things to blame my failure on; I want to blame myself for my success. 😛

The first week back On Program (OP), I wasn’t doing so hot. I’m not sure what my mindset was, but it was not success. I took stock in my decision to re-join Weight Watchers, and decided that I wasn’t going to allow myself to fail.

My first test was going out for dinner and drinks with friends at a locally owned Irish-style pub. I looked up the menu to plan my meal – but – gasp! – no nutritional information was available. I looked up similar foods so that I could estimate points values and limited my choices down to 2-3. I chose a Rosemary Oven-Roasted Chicken with Roasted Potatoes and Grilled Asparagus. I had a glass of wine with dinner. I even had dessert – which I shared. I thought I was going to use up the majority of my flex points – but I didn’t. 😀 I did use a few, but not many at all. That was victory #1.

My second victory came today. I had waited far too long to eat and I was getting light headed, it was time for me to prepare dinner, but I knew that I wouldn’t make it even that long. We have some tortilla chips in the pantry, as well as cereals, nuts, and chocolate chips. Normally, I would have chosen something chock full of carbs or (refined) sugar – I was drawn to the fruit bowl instead. As I got out what I needed in order to prepare dinner, I ate a banana, which held me over perfectly.

Am I too early in my journey to congratulate myself for a job well-done? I don’t think so. I have never before
taken the time to really think about my choices – a habit I’ve been wanting to change for a long, long time. I need to take stock of all of the great decisions I make so that when I might make a bad decision, I won’t beat myself up about it. So what if I go over my points one day, that’s what flex points are for. So what if I eat a piece of cake at a birthday party, I’ve budgeted it and will be making smart choices the rest of the day. If I beat myself up for every little thing, I’ll become dejected and ultimately quit. I’m a winner – and winners never quit. 😀

Simon Howden

I'm a Winner!

photos from: Charlotte Astrid’s Flickr

tinachensf’s Flickr