Monday, July 30, 2012


I don't have much to say this week. So, instead,  I'm going to list what I've been reading. I hope you all find them as interesting as I have.

One of my favorite blogs is Can You Stay for Dinner?  Andie Mitchell lost 135 pounds and has maintained her weight for 5 years. I love the honesty with which she writes. She includes some pretty tasty looking recipes, as well.

In Andie Mitchell's last post, she mentioned a series she came across written by Dawn Lerman for the New York Time's Blog, called Growing Up With a Fat Dad. I found it very interesting and thought provoking.

My mom cut an article from the Deseret News written by Jody Genessy and sent it in the mail to me last week. Thanks, Mom, for thinking of me. It really touched me and felt very familiar. You can read the article by clicking here. My favorite quote from that article is,
 "Rock, meet my bottom." 
 The one that made me cry (first) was, 
"But, honestly, my funny fat man routine has worn old. I've used that type of humor to hide the hurt for decades, and that's not working anymore."

This is a little off topic, but I can't read about losing weight all the time, or I may just have to gouge my eyes out with a soup spoon. So I found this link - on Pinterest -  to a blog called The Fun Cheap or Free Queen by Jordan Page, a frugality specialist - yes really, a frugality specialist. This post is taken from a segment she did on television for KUTV and is called How much should I pay for - ?   It gives helpful suggestions as to how much to pay for all kinds of goods and services such as groceries, babysitting, haircuts, and so on. 

From the "How much should I pay for" post, I found a link to another blog I've, coincidentally, been following lately called Frugally Sustainable. The link took me to a post listing 50 good Tips For Saving on Groceries

In those tips for saving on groceries, there was another really interesting link (don't you just love how it never ends?) about shopping with no waste. Now, I don't know that I'll ever invest that much time to grocery shopping, but it makes a lot of sense and I can see myself making changes in the way I shop. You can get to this post in A Zero Waste Home by clicking here

Finally, I list a book review blog, Reading For Sanity. It's a great resource for finding honest and well written reviews of books. A friend of mine is one of the contributors and she is one of the smartest and well-read women I know. 

So that's what I've been doing. Reading. Trying to find some inspiration. I wish you a good week. And happy reading.

Monday, July 23, 2012

Hello, My Name is Abby - Abby Normal.

Oh, how I love my DVR. It's kind of pathetic how much I adore it. I can record anything and watch it later without all those darn commercials. In fact, when watching tv that's not recorded, my boys ask me to fast forward through the commercials. I wish I could! But the last couple of weeks, I've been making my way through the past season of CSI-Las Vegas. I wasn't sure how I'd like the new cast members and actually, I haven't yet forgiven the show for losing Grissom years ago, so I hadn't been too eager to watch while the new episodes were actually being aired.

Anyway, if you're a watcher of the CSI shows, you know they are going to dissect a few bodies - and usually at least one brain is thrown in there for fun. They can explain why a person behaved the way they did, or how they died - just by looking at the brain and any injury to it. So I've been wondering what they would find if they dissected my brain. What would explain my behavior? Would they find a few potato chips in there? Would my switch for knowing when I was full be under-developed? Would they be able to tell me why I literally can not stop eating? What makes my brain different from, say, Lobster's brain? Why can he stop after one serving of food and I can't? Why must I stuff myself?

I've been around the block a time or two. I know how to eat healthily. I love healthy food. But even stuffing myself with healthy food is unhealthy. Why am I doing this to myself? I have had a rough week. I have been unable to control myself. At. All. And it scares me.

We all know that I am an emotional eater, but after almost 7 months of practice and delving into my feelings about food and my weight, I feel like I should be able to control myself more than this. I am about middle-aged, for heaven's sake. If anyone should have control of their body, it should be I. I think I need some help - some professional help. A lot of you have probably thought that I've needed that for a long time. A friend of mine suggested that I talk to a dietitian or nutritionist a few months ago. My sister made that same suggestion last week. I haven't wanted to get help in that way because I felt that I know what I need to do. We can see how well that has worked out.

To be successful at weight-loss, "they" say that exercise is only 20% of the equation. So, what we put in our mouths makes up the other 80%. This is a big deal. And I've got to get it right. 

Sunday, July 15, 2012


There are days when I feel light. No matter my size or weight, I feel light and strong and pretty and able to do just about anything. 

This is not one of those days.

In fact, I feel just the opposite. I can feel every single one of my pounds and one or two of them (especially the one I gained this week), I feel twice. My limbs feel heavy and hard to move. Even my head feels thick and slow. Now, months ago, I would have thought it was just a bad day, but I know what I've been up to.  And it doesn't rhyme with lurking trout.  And it definitely doesn't rhyme with fleeting fright. The way I feel today reminds me of a quote I like.
"The food you eat can be either the safest and most powerful form of medicine or the slowest form of poison."      -Ann Wigmore-
I have had a great time this past week, though. We had my family reunion, here in Oregon. I feel so lucky that my mom, all of my siblings and their spouses took the time (and spent the money!) to get here. Only four of my nieces and nephews (+ 1 niece-in-law and 3 kiddos) were missing (darn kids grow up and get their own lives - what's that about?). We stayed in 6 of the deluxe cabins at Fort Stevens State Park and although the mosquitoes were hungry and fearless, I think it's safe to say that we enjoyed each other's company. The cabins are fantastic! It's absolutely my way to camp - with beds, flushing toilets, showers, screens on the windows, and a fire pit outside. Hard core, I'm not.

So here's a run down of my week:
  • Worrying that I don't have enough food
  • Shopping for more food
  • Watching Lobster freak out about how much (food) needed to be in the car
  • Joking that the axle would break under all the weight and then reassuring boy #1 for the next THREE HOURS that the axle would not break
  • Massaging the neck of a driving Lobster that was more tense than any lobster should ever be
  • Showing boys #1 & 2 how to make a S'MOreo
  • Disappointing Lobster that I did not invent the S'MOreo and could not claim it on the internet as mine
  • Sitting by the campfire and telling a spooky story (I'm a gonna getcha and then I'm gonna eatcha!) three times and then laughing at my boys as they reenact it.
  • Watching a movie (yes, TVs and DVD players are in the cabins, too) with 2 boys too excited to go to sleep.
  • Sending off all my guys for a much anticipated bike ride
  • Dispensing first-aid to boy #2 after he crashed off his bike (10 minutes into said bike ride)
  • Trying to keep 3 guys busy and make dinner for 25 people at the same time (thank you, Susan!)
  • Greeting my family, letting them know where to go and realizing that the "welcome buckets" were not ready - DOH!
  • Drinking WAY too much diet soda
  • Eating WAY too much sugar and chips - mmmm....chips
  • Laughing with my family
  • Watching my boys run around with their cousins and loving every minute
  • Cringing as I hear my boys teach their younger cousins how to do a "butt-bomb"
  • Seeing my Utah and Arizona family brave the nippy Pacific ocean
  • Enjoying yummy food made/bought by my siblings - SO GOOD!
  • Sitting in a circle and playing with a candy "Tape Ball"  
  • Being proud of my family while they so willingly serve by picking up trash off the beach while on their vacation
  • Cleaning and packing up (a lot of extra food) and feeling sad to see my family drive off, one by one
  • Feeling incredibly lucky to be part of my family - LOVE THEM!
So, yes, I'm feeling the effects of eating too much sugar, too much soda and not enough vegetables. I will begin, again, my healthier eating habits tomorrow. I am also feeling the effects of being with the people I love most. Though, my limbs and head seem thick and heavy, my heart is full and happy. And that's what is most important.

Sunday, July 8, 2012

We Are Family

I have a family reunion this next week and I am so excited. Well, excited with a shot of dread because I happen to be in charge this year. My siblings are either natural organizers or they hide it well. The previous years' reunions have seemed to have gone so smoothly and were so nice! I keep going over my lists and worrying if I've forgotten anything. I keep sending emails and updates and the Fort Stevens State Park office staff know me on a first name basis now - and probably not in a good way. I'm making all my siblings come to Oregon - a long trip from Utah and Arizona. I can't wait to share the beach and the cooler temperatures that the northwest coast offers. Although my fam from Arizona will probably freeze to death. I think the temps at the coast this week are about half of what they get this time of year. Maybe I should bring an extra quilt or two. Add it to the list!

Except for my lovely sister that lives here in Oregon, my family all lives in other states. One of the great things about living away from your family is that you're not with them enough to get on their nerves and they on yours. It sure makes for good reunions - because you are actually reuniting. Thinking and planning for this reunion has really made me think about my parents' family reunions growing up. They were such fun! Running around with my cousins, water fights, weenie (my boys think that word is HILARIOUS! They ask me to sing the Weenie Man song just about every day) and marshmallow roasts, homemade root beer, potluck lunches and lots of laughter. I want that for my kids, too. They are excited to see their cousins and "Me-maw" and to be camping and at the beach and fishing at the lake. So this year, it's my job to give that to them. They, and my sister's boys, are the youngest of the cousins, so the older kids will have to put up with little boys tagging along, wanting to do everything they do. I'm sure it will be annoying for them, but if that's not what family is for, what is?

I'm sure you've noticed that my "weight loss progress" is less than impressive this week. I'm going to blame it on the stress of getting ready for the reunion. It could be the pizza and other fast food I ate this weekend, AND the failure to track my meals the last half of the week, but I'm blaming it on the stress. When it gets hot, I SO don't want to cook. I'm needing some air conditioning - or a few days at the coast! Well, just my luck...

I'd love to hear about some of your favorite family reunion memories. Have a great week!

Monday, July 2, 2012


Can you believe it's already July? July 4th is this week. Don't worry. This post is not going to be about politics. There is plenty of that all around us. I really try to keep that to myself nowadays. I was once talking "politics" with my mom and younger sister, and really surprised and shamed myself by yelling. I won't inflict that on you. What I want to discuss is our own personal Declarations of Independence - a good topic for this week. I am, obviously, far from being independent from my addiction to food. As I'm writing, I am wishing for another delicious chocolate cupcake with the oh, so luscious Oreo swiss meringue buttercream, made by my sister for my nephew's birthday party yesterday. I want it to just appear right next to me- followed by some salty Kettle Chips (also at said birthday party). It's making it really hard to concentrate and collect my thoughts. Pathetic? Yes, I know, I know. But it's the way it is. I did have one small victory this week. Did you happen to notice the "My Fitness Pal" button? I lost almost 4 pounds! I owe it all to tracking my food - knowing what I put in my mouth and how much more I could or should not, made a big difference. Ignorance may be bliss, but it definitely does not make my pant size any smaller. 

I met with a trainer at the YMCA on Thursday. Justin was young, cute, and very fit - everything I feared he would be. But you know something else he was? Very kind and respectful. I can just imagine what he thought when he saw that I was his appointment, but he was easy to talk to and very supportive and really helped me to feel confident in using the equipment. He explained how each machine worked, and how I should hold my body to get the best results. He showed a lot of flexibility when I needed to adjust things to work for me and my body. The YMCA isn't the most convenient location, but the people there have totally made up for that. 

So I am declaring my independence from a sedentary lifestyle. I've been writing about it for a long time, but still I keep waiting to lose weight so it will be easier. I can't just sit at home anymore waiting to do what I want. I have to make it happen. I think it's Newton's law of motion -  A body in motion stays in motion, a body at rest stays at rest. Well I've been resting too long. I like feeling strong. I know it will be hard. Even after just one set at each weight machine, I was so sore on Friday. My sister tells me that being sore is weakness leaving the body. I can deal with that. At least I know my muscles are working.

I want to be successful. So I'm trying to focus on my rules, track my food religiously, and go the YMCA 5 days per week - either for water aerobics or strength training. 

Is there anything from which you are Declaring Independence? I'd love to hear.