Monday, March 29, 2010

I've Got the Blues

Sorry, friends, this is not going to be my usual perky post. I'm just miserable this morning, despite a pretty good weekend. I'm frustrated, overwhelmed and disgusted with myself. There are too many mirrors in this house and they are not forgiving. I go to bed hating my body, hoping & wishing that somehowI could wake up thin. I wake up depressed that the miracle didn't happen. I hate the way I look right now yet sick & tired of thinking of diet & exercise 24/7. Spring is here, bathing suit season right around the corner, and I loathe the thought of splaying my fat butt across the beach.

The worst part is, I really have no one to talk to about this. My Man is one of those who can (and does) eat & drink whatever he wants without gaining. Most of my friends are in good, or at least decent, shape and the ones who aren't don't want to hear me whining. So, here I am, venting at you all. Thanks for "listening." I'm gonna go find something productive to do..maybe tearing down all the mirrors in the house and cutting out all the label in my clothing?

Wednesday, March 24, 2010

Howling at the Moon!

No, it's not the full moon yet but I'm howling anyway! You see, there's a reason for my short absence, and his picture is below....

Meet Loki, my new wolf-dog puppy! Yep, you read that right, I adopted myself a wolf-pup! Now, those of you who know me in "real life" aren't surprised because I have been fascinated (some would say obsessed) with wolves for years now, ever since I read Women Who Run With the Wolves by Clarissa Pinkola Estes and felt an instant connection. Over the past few years I've volunteered at a wolf sanctuary and have given serious thought to adopting a wolf dog but didn't think I was ready yet. Well, two weeks ago this little guy's picture showed up in my mailbox with this description: 4 months old, loves the water, gets along well with cats and other animals. Is 90% housebrokenWhoa! We rarely have a pup come up for adoption and the fact that he does well with cats was a huge plus! After a quick consultation with the family we decided to go for it. So, the adoption process began. We were approved on Monday and made the hour and a half long drive last night to pick up our new baby!

I'm madly in love. Seriously. He is an absolute angel. A big, furry, messy angel but an angel nonetheless! We named him Loki after the mischievous Norse god..grin...from what I can see so far his name suits him perfectly! Here he is below with a couple more family members, Presley & Lucy.

So, if I'm absent in the next few days don't worry. I'm just busy exercising (walking Loki, mopping the floor after he & Lucy track in mud) and cooking (well, not exactly cooking as Loki eats raw meat in addition to his kibble) and getting to know our new bundle of joy!

Hugs & Wolf Kisses,

45 minutes of heavy cleaning, appx 252 calories burned (according to Sparkpeople, 2 POINTS earned

P.S. I should have clarified, Loki is a wolf-dog of "low-content", not sure how much wolf and how much dog as we don't know his parents. He was dropped on the side of the road as a baby and has been fostered ever since. I'm sorry for him but awfully glad he's mine!

Friday, March 19, 2010

Fishing Friday? Not!

Yesterday afternoon Beren and I packed up the car and headed out of town, he has some training to do in a city about 2 hours north of us, Sebastian.

After checking into this cute little hotel, we headed across the street to their Sand Bar where we sipped some cocktails and were treated to the musical talent of this young man, Shain Honkonen.

We then went inside the restaurant for dinner, had a fabulous meal of Mahi Tropical with baked potato (yeah, I indulged in the white stuff) and roasted asparagus. I only ate half so I can enjoy the rest for lunch today. I can't find the exact recipe, but this one looks similar, I calculated it at 6 POINTS.

Since Beren did have to work this morning, we hit the sack early, got up refreshed and ready to explore the area solo!

As you can see by the website, this is a very fishing-friendly town and if you don't know this already about me, I am not a fisherman. Other than sailing around Biscayne Bay on Beren's little boat, or cruising on a giant ship, I prefer to keep my feet firmly on the ground! I tried deep sea fishing once and believe me that was more than enough! The captain decided to brave 4 foot seas, trolling around with me bouncing all over the boat the first part of the journey and hanging my head over the remainder of it. *groan* Not my finest moment and one I'd rather not repeat, thank you very much. Green is not my color, if you know what I mean.

So, how to spend my morning while my man is out working? I could just don my bathing suit and lounge around by the pool but first I laced on my sneakers and went out for a walk. Not knowing the area, I spent 15 minutes walking down the busy highway before discovering a lovely path right along the water! Duh! I spent 45 minutes soaking up the beautiful local sights....

Sebastian Pier


Sebastian Shack

and even found a happy hour spot for Beren and I to check out later! (you know how I love my biker bars!)

Earl's Hideaway

Well, time to hit the shower and see what trouble I can get into this afternoon. *wink*

45 Min Brisk Walk, appx 224 calories burned (according to Sparkpeople, 2 POINTS earned

Thursday, March 18, 2010

The Leprechaun Made Me Do It

Last night my office had their annual St Patty's Day party and in the spirit of honesty, I must admit that I completely overdid it, to the tune of a 40.5 POINT day. Yikes! But I was aware of what I was doing, ate and drank purposefully, had a wonderful time with my workmates knowing that I'd pay for it later. So, I woke up this morning, got on my treadmill, drank a huge bottle of water and then sat down to log the damages. Because of my overindulgence, I only have 15.5 flex POINTS left for the week and will have to then rely on earned Activity POINTS. If I continue to visit my treadmill daily, I shouldn't have a problem.

Since I only used one head of cabbage for dinner last night, I'm left with another whole head and am looking for a healthy way to prepare it. Beren and I will be going out of town tonight, having dinner in an unknown restaurant where I won't have as much control over the menu so lunch time is my chance to make really good choices.

This recipe is from My Better Homes and Gardens Cookbook, copyright 1938.

Shredded Cabbage-Green Pepper Salad

-------- ------------ --------------------------------
3 cups shredded cabbage
1/2 cup green pepper -- finely chopped
1 small cucumber -- diced
1/4 cup chopped celery
1 tablespoon minced onion
1/3 cup vinegar
1 teaspoon salt
1/8 teaspoon pepper
1/2 cup cream

- - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - -

Combine cabbage, green pepper, cucumber, celery and onion. Combine vinegar, salt, and pepper; pour over vegetables and chill 30 minutes. Just before serving, add cream and mix thoroughly.

Serves 6

Per Serving (excluding unknown items): 71 Calories; 5g Fat (61.0% calories from fat); 2g Protein; 6g Carbohydrate; 2g Dietary Fiber; 17mg Cholesterol; 375mg Sodium. Appx 1 WW POINT

There really wasn't much to change here, used red & orange peppers because that's what I had on hand and fat free half & half instead of the cream but that small change brought this down to a Zero POINT salad! Since I'm likely to eat more than one serving I'll count this as a whole POINT but so what? That's nothing compared to what I consumed yesterday! *blush* I will also have a small slice of plain soda bread, making this a 3 POINT lunch. Pretty good, huh?

Shredded Cabbage-Green Pepper Salad Redux

-------- ------------ --------------------------------
3 cups shredded cabbage
1/2 cup green pepper -- finely chopped
1 small cucumber -- diced
1/4 cup chopped celery
1 tablespoon minced onion
1/3 cup vinegar
1 teaspoon salt
1/8 teaspoon pepper
1/2 cup fat free half-and-half

- - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - -

Per Serving (excluding unknown items): 35 Calories; trace Fat (4.9% calories from fat); 1g Protein; 7g Carbohydrate; 2g Dietary Fiber; 0mg Cholesterol; 387mg Sodium. Appx 0 WW POINTS

30 min on treadmill, 223 calories burned, 2 POINTS earned

Wednesday, March 17, 2010

When Irish Eyes are Smiling


I was certainly smiling when I got on the scale this morning to find the numbers had gone down, ever so slightly! It's not an official loss because I hadn't logged my gain last week (bad girl, I know) but I'm back where I started which is fine with me. At least I know I lost this week no matter what my journal says. I really think the exercise is helping not only to burn calories but also control my appetite. Duh, right?

Even though I'm not Irish, my kids are (via their dads) so we always make a big fuss about the holiday. And, even though we are all mostly-vegetarian, we break down a couple of times a year for special occasions. Today happens to be one of those days. There's corned beef & cabbage in my crockpot (at appx 11 POINTS per serving) and my Irish Soda Bread is cooling on the counter (at a surprisingly low 2 POINTS per slice) so with a 13 POINT meal and the couple of beers that are sure to be included, I'll be watching my intake for the early part of the day and will definitely be hopping on the treadmill again tomorrow morning.

Have a Beauty-Full Day!

30 min on treadmill, 221 calories burned, 2 POINTS earned

Tuesday, March 16, 2010

Morning Girl

So, I got up yesterday morning with a new attitude, determined to start this work week off on the right note. Knowing that I need to make some changes in my routine, I decided to go back to an old habit that worked really well in the past: No computer before exercise. Period. I woke up, had my morning coffee with Beren before he headed off to work and then I put on my workout clothes and hopped on the treadmill. Oh, I could hear my laptop calling me, taunting & tempting me with exciting e-mails and not-to-be missed posts from fellow bloggers. But I resisted. I clicked on the DVR and turned my back on the internet, immersed myself in one of my favorite tv shows and before I knew it 30 minutes was gone! Then and only then did I sit down at my desk and enter cyberworld. It really set the day in motion and helped keep me on track, am happy to report that for the first time in a long while I was Perfectly On Program! Yay, me!

This morning, same thing. By 7 am I have already cuddled with my boyfriend, crossed off some household chores, packed my lunch, laid out my breakfast, logged another half an hour on the treadmill, showered and dressed for work. Whew! After all of that, I feel justified in enjoying a little alone time, just me, my feline companion and the blogosphere! And, damn, it feels good to get that exercise over with first thing! Now, I must admit that I am, and always have been, a morning person. I am up before sunrise, and, unless I am being highly entertained...wink...I'm sound asleep by 10 pm. I do my best work, whether it be physical or mental, in the wee hours before the rest of the planet is awake. So, really, it just makes more sense for me to incorporate exercise into my morning routine. It's no hardship for me and allows me to go about my busy Tuesday knowing that I have done a very good thing for my body already!

On that note, I've got to share this hilarious vintage YouTube from back in the days when a housewife's biggest morning mission was making her husband the perfect cup of coffee! Enjoy, and have a Beauty-Full Day!

30 min on treadmill, 220 calories burned, 2 POINTS earned

Friday, March 12, 2010

Mary, Mary...

Definitions of contrary on the Web:

* very opposed in nature or character or purpose; "acts contrary to our code of ethics"; "the facts point to a contrary conclusion"
* reverse: a relation of direct opposition; "we thought Sue was older than Bill but just the reverse was true"
* of words or propositions so related that both cannot be true but both may be false; "`hot' and `cold' are contrary terms"
* exact opposition; "public opinion to the contrary he is not guilty"
* resistant to guidance or discipline; "Mary Mary quite contrary"; "an obstinate child with a violent temper"; "a perverse mood"; "wayward behavior"
* adverse: in an opposing direction; "adverse currents"; "a contrary wind"

The reason I quoted the above definitions is because I myself feel quite contrary as of late in that I say I want something but over & over I do do just the opposite! Of course I'm talking about losing weight and becoming healthier. I say I will stay on target, follow my eating plan and write down every single morsel of food that enters my mouth yet a quick glance at my journal proves otherwise. I say I will exercise every day because I feel absolutely fabulous afterward and know it's good for my body & mind, yet my running shoes stand neglected in the corner and my treadmill is covered in dust. I say I enjoy preparing healthy meals for myself and my family yet last night I ate pizza because I was too lazy to cook. I even say I love gardening and the fresh herbs and vegetables my garden provides but I'm staring outside my window at an overgrown mess of weeds and dirt! (The weather is no excuse; here in Florida I can grow something year round).

The list goes on & on, so many examples of my actions being in direct opposition to what I profess to be my goals! It's frustrating to step on the scale each week to see absolutely no change but I have no one to blame but myself! My weight loss has stalled along wit my efforts and something seriously has to change or I'm going to enter my 47th year the same way I did my 46th: overweight and unhappy about it.

So, today I am headed out to the garden to hoe those weeds and prepare the soil for some new herbs and veggies. Perhaps in the process I'll not only stretch my muscles but also clear some of the weeds out of my head, especially the ones that are choking my motivation and spirit!

Have a Beauty-Full Day,

Tuesday, March 9, 2010

Bodacious Bodices!

Just a quick note before I head out to work, did want to share one pic from the Ren Fest on Sunday!

Yes, I donned my corset and had a lovely time with My Pirate but despite Beren's repeated suggestions to do otherwise, I did not participate in the "cleavage contest." Once I saw the competition, oh, my! There was no way I would win and chose instead to sip a nice cold beverage and just enjoy the scenery. *wink*

I'm working on some new recipes so stay tuned for those; in the meantime, Have a Beauty-Full Day!

Sunday, March 7, 2010

Hot Dish: Taco Soup

Beren and I have a busy Sunday planned, are donning our pirate attire and heading out to the Renaissance Festival! It's such a gorgeous day, still a bit chilly which will be perfect for an outdoor event. Today's theme is Wenches and I'm very tempted to enter the Bodice Costume competition! I might need a couple pints of ale to get me courage up for such a thing! *wink*

Since I know I won't feel like cooking when I get home and don't want to be tempted by all of that festival food, I'm going to toss this quick & easy soup into the crock pot before we leave.

Slow Cooker Taco Soup
-------- ------------ --------------------------------
12 ounces Morningstar Meal Starters Grillers Recipe Crumbles
1 1/4 ounces taco seasoning mix
20 ounces Ro*Tel Mild Diced Green Tomatoes & Green Chilies
1 cup frozen corn
15 1/2 ounces canned black beans
3 1/2 ounces sliced black olives
1 medium onion -- diced
1 green bell pepper -- diced
8 ounces tomato sauce

Combine all ingredients, cook on low 5-6 hours or until vegetables are tender. Top with grated cheddar or Mexican blend cheese & a dollop of sour cream if desired. May also be served over brown rice or corn bread.

Serves 8.

- - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - -

Per Serving (not including optional toppings): 109 Calories; 2g Fat (16.0% calories from fat); 5g Protein; 19g Carbohydrate; 5g Dietary Fiber; 0mg Cholesterol; 742mg Sodium. Appx 2 WW POINTS.

Have a Beauty-Full Sunday!

Saturday, March 6, 2010

Winter Blues

Yes, it's true, even here in the tropics we are experiencing cooler-than-usual temperatures! I've got to tell you, as much as I enjoy the crisp air and lower electric bills that result from finally turning off the a/c, I'm tired of winter! I sit here with a blanket on my lap, gazing longingly at my swimming pool and overgrown herb garden, wishing I could get outside and play!

Well, never mind, I'm just going to pretend it's warm outside and whip myself up a nice fruity smoothie for breakfast! Surely this will help chase those winter blues away!

This quick & easy recipe is from a new cookbook I picked up at the thrift store last weekend, Mary Meade's Magic Recipes: A Cookbook for the Electric Blender, copyright 1965.

Pineapple Smoothie
-------- ------------ --------------------------------
1 cup fresh pineapple -- diced
2 tablespoons sugar
1 cup milk
1/2 cup cracked ice

Blend about 30 seconds to a minute.

Serves 2.

- - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - -

Per Serving (excluding unknown items): 161 Calories; 4g Fat (23.6% calories from fat); 4g Protein; 28g Carbohydrate; 1g Dietary Fiber; 17mg Cholesterol; 62mg Sodium.

Look how just a couple of changes brought down the calories by half and saved me a POINT while not sacrificing a bit of taste!

Pineapple Smoothie Redux

-------- ------------ --------------------------------
1 cup fresh pineapple -- diced
1 teaspoon aspartame sweetener
1 cup skim milk
1/2 cup cracked ice

- - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - -

Blend about 30 seconds to a minute.

Serves 2.

Per Serving (excluding unknown items): 85 Calories; 1g Fat (5.4% calories from fat); 5g Protein; 16g Carbohydrate; 1g Dietary Fiber; 2mg Cholesterol; 66mg Sodium.
Appx 1 WW POINT.

Yummy! Now if only changing the weather were so easy...

Friday, March 5, 2010

Taking a Leap

March 5, 2010
Leaping into Life
Leo Daily Horoscope

You may feel restless today or dissatisfied with your current routine. The old patterns by which you related to others may no longer be as effective as they once were. Seeking freshness, you may be inspired to make positive changes to your life or your mind-set. Experiencing internal and external transformations could feel like a breath of fresh air, and you may be surprised to find yourself driven to make bigger and more elaborate changes. Simply adopting a new outlook could also be an invigorating experience. If you’re not inclined to make changes to your lifestyle, learning something new may satisfy your need for change. Today could be a wonderful time to explore a new activity, meet new people, or practice positive thinking.

When you’re willing to explore new ways of thinking and being, your adventurous spirit can help you attain the life you’ve dreamed of. Restlessness will diminish as you increase your forward momentum and use your innate courage to foster change. By stepping out of a few old patterns and into new ones, you encourage change to permeate your being. Transforming yourself in one way can give you the courage to makes changes in other areas of your life that you would not have previously considered. Besides, change naturally fosters open-mindedness. By choosing to embrace change today, you can make your life feel new and exciting again.

First, sorry that I dropped off the planet a bit this past week. I've been rather out of sorts, have some stuff going on in my life that I'm trying to deal with. I'm the first one to admit that I don't handle change well; in fact, I fight it kicking and screaming! As much as I enjoy passion & excitement, I also thrive on stability and there is not quite enough of that in my life right now. Every member of my immediate family is in a state of flux at the moment and, being the Matriarch of my little brood, this can't help but impact me. Yet, at the same time I'm experiencing anxiety and worry over these changes, I'm also feeling restless and anxious to do something different for myself. Everyone else is doing new & exciting things and I feel stagnant. I feel a major lifestyle change coming on. I don't know exactly what it's going to look like, that part hasn't been made clear to me yet, but I know something is happening internally and that has no choice but to change me externally.

In the past when I've felt this way it's resulted in weight loss and other physical alterations (nails, hair, etc). It's like I need that little outward boost in order to move forward with the emotional/mental issues. The inside & outside work hand in hand in my case.

So, stay tuned for a new & (hopefully) improved Rapunzel.

Have a Beauty-full Day,