Monday, November 29, 2010

Thanksgiving Is Only One Day

Remembering that holidays last for only one day is one of the things to remember when trying to lose weight. I love turkey and if I had cooked one, eating it would have gone on for days. Gone are the days of turkey sandwiches until there is nothing but bones left on Tom's carcass. My sister cooked the bird this year and it was quite moist. Fortunately, she fixed stuffing balls instead of stuffing the turkey so I only ate a tiny bit of stuffing. (I prefer stuffing from the bird.) I ate a little of my favorites - green bean casserole, greens, creamed peas and onions, mashed potato casserole, sweet potatoes and cranberry salad mold. I ate no rolls and only about a tablespoon of gravy. My plate was very modest compared to the heaping plates of the relatives. Later, I ate a tiny sliver of chess and pecan pies. No seconds and no "take-out." And glory, halleleujah, I lost 0.2 pounds last week.
Weight-watchers is launching some changes this week so I'm excited to hear about them. The little bit I was able to glean on-line sounds like what I'm already doing - eating a ton of vegetables and fruit. The counting game and points plan have changed, though, so stay tuned for more information.

Monday, November 22, 2010

The Slowest Loser Update

Yayyyy! I lost again this week, 1.2 lbs. I've lost a total of 16.8 pounds now. Lately, after reading "Eat to Live" by Dr. Joel Fuhrman, I've been eating fruit and vegetables, mostly. I veered off last weekend when I took a friend out to lunch after church. I let her choose the restaurant and she chose Red Lobster. If I didn't order fish, I wasn't going to get anything to eat. I definitely would have lost a little more if it hadn't been for the scallops and the few shrimp passed to me by my friend's son who had ordered endless shrimp.

This week I've got the challenge of getting through Thanksgiving dinner especially since all I've been thinking about is dressing. I love that stuff. Pray for me!! I know I won't be able to resist.

Monday, November 8, 2010

Weight-loss Update

I keep forgetting to tell you. I lost 0.8 lbs. last week even though I was not on my best behavior. The week before that I lost only 0.2 even though I followed the diet to the letter. Go figure! So thus far, this slowest loser has lost 14.6 lbs. I am reading, "Eat to Live", by Dr. Joel Fuhrman, so I expect I will be making some more dietary changes - ones geared toward disease-prevention and weight loss.

The Day Trip to Savannah

While vacationing at Hilton Head Island, I decided to drive to Savannah which was about only about 45 minutes away. I selected a trolley ride to get a quick look at the city. When you bought a ticket, it was good for the entire day. You can get on or off at several stops or simply keep riding it all day. I chose to get off at the Riverwalk. Most of the pictures I took was in this area.

This shot was of a hotel on an island across from the riverwalk. I don't remember the name of the hotel but it was one I had considered when I thought I might stay in Savannah. It was clear in the description of the hotel that you would have to drive over the bridge or take a ferry to get to it. It's huge but I imagine quite lovely.

This little market is where I bought souvenirs (is that spelled correctly?).

Now in spite of the fact that I rode the trolley around Savannah twice, I didn't get any pictures of the beautiful squares (there are 23, I believe) nor much of the other sites. However, as we were passing Paula Deen's restaurant I attempted to get a shot. Alas, Ladies and Sons is smaller than I thought and this picture doesn't do it justice. She has her own store next to but right before the restaurant. I didn't eat there; I wasn't in the mood to stand in long lines. You can see the trolley in the reflection off the window.

Friday, October 29, 2010

Vacation 2010, part deux

First of all, I am correcting an item from yesterday's post. The name of the public beach was Coligny Beach; at least I knew the name began with a "c".

Today's pics are of the sights at my hotel. These first two are of the pools at Hilton Head Marriott Resort and Spa. I'm told the water was cold and I had forgot my goggles, so I didn't get in. What a waste? Right?

These views are from my balcony. Lovely!!!

Thursday, October 28, 2010

Vacation 2010

As my fans know, I visited Hilton Head Island recently. Today, I am posting pics from two beaches there. I think the first one was Codicyl Beach. It's a public beach located near a shopping tourist trap-type of place. It was very pretty and well-kept.

This second beach is what I'm calling the Lighthouse Beach but it's in the Sea Pines area. You had to pay a $5.00 entry fee to drive into the area. I'm told because it was a private residential area. There was a marina and once again, some shops willing to accept the tourist's money. (They didn't get another dime from me!! Not a surprise to my fans.)

 I'll post some more pics soon. Thanks for visiting.

Tuesday, October 26, 2010

Weight-loss Update

My apologies to my fan(s) but I've been preparing to go on a vacation trip, driving to Florida and Hilton Head Island and back, and then recovering, unpacking, de-bugging the car, etc. I just haven't had time to write. Anyway, I weighed in on Saturday and discovered I lost 1.4 pounds during my vacation. I assure you, I did not weigh, measure, count points or intentionally exercise. I think, however, that I end up being more active on vacation and I don't eat by the clock. I eat when I get hungry but very little when I'm driving; food plus driving equals drowsiness. Not a good combination driving the curves of Tennesee and North Carolina.

I'll post some pictures of my trip shortly.

Oh, my total weight loss thus far is 13.6. Slow but steady.

Thursday, October 7, 2010

World Equestrian Games

Lexington hosted the WEG this year. I think this was the first time the games were held in the U.S. This city has been gearing up and gussying up for about two years. Streets were "remodeled" and replanted, the Kentucky Horse Park had a new indoor arena built and of course, businesses and hotels prepared to be overwhelmed. Well, we weren't overwhelmed but it has been interesting.

I was fortunate to get two tickets and chose to go the the "Reining" event. The riders took there horses through a certain routine without any noticeable tugging/pulling on their part. The most astonishing was when the horse was galloping at full speed ahead and was "reined" to a stop much like a man sliding into home base but only in a shorter distance. Amazing. Here are a few pictures.

I just discovered many of the pictures were too dark. Sorry.

The Slowest Loser, Week 9 Update

Okay, remember last week I didn't weigh in at an official meeting site; they were closed. So this week accounts for two weeks of loss...3.8 pounds. Whew!! Now I have lost a total of 13.4 lbs. That doesn't seem like much to me but due to the wisdom of the WW leader, I know that is a LOT. For the last two meetings she has passed around bags or sacks of can goods totalling various pounds. Last week the bag weighed 11.6. You won't believe how heavy that is until you try it.

Additionally, I passed a milestone - I've zoomed past my 5% weight-loss target. At various levels of success, WW awards the members with recognition and small tokens. Each week, members are recognized and applauded for losing 5 lbs. or simply resisting temptations or making lifestyle changes. My next big level of recognition is at 10% target, then 25 lbs. Other milestones are attendance for 16 weeks (indicating those who stay that long usually meet their goal weight), reaching goal and obtaining lifetime status. Corny, but reaching each level of recognition is a boost to my resolve. I am definitely on my way!!!

The leader always asks, "so what's working for you?" Good question. I always answer, " coming to meetings." Why? Accountability. I seem to need to answer to someone to make me stay on target.

Last week, I also enrolled in a community weight-loss/fitness challenge. We weighed and had our B/P, height, waist, and body fat recorded. Late in December, we get another set of readings to track our progress. There are several free exercise classes and coaching sessions, so no one has any excuse. I'm going to attend Zumba sessions on Tuesday and Friday, low-impact class on Thursday and aqua-fitness on Saturday. I'll walk on most days as far as my stiff knees will allow for now. I am so stoked for this. Stay tuned!!

Saturday, September 25, 2010

Weekly Update

I didn't get to weigh in at a meeting. After driving all the way over there, there was a sign on the door - no meeting at the regular time. One of the other WW's said she remembered the leader stating there would be no meeting today. I did not hear that. So anyway, I think I lost around 2 lbs. according to my scales. I pretty much lived close to the edge this week again, so I'm happy with what I got.

Sunday, September 19, 2010

A Blessed Cook, I Am

I told you about a good friend of mine who died recently. Well, her daughter called me recently asking me to cook her family dinner just to relieve the stress of cleaning out her mother's house and doing other things to get everything in order. Of course, I said I would but I was not able to do so for several days. Anyway, when I got around to it, what I thought of was to cook something I hadn't made since I was in my twenties -  Exotic Pot Roast. I remember making it and sharing the recipe for a fund-raising cookbook. But, I couldn't find the recipe the day I made the roast. know me, I winged it. Well, today, I found the recipe and there were only four (in my opinion--nutmeg, chocolate, oregano and wine) essential ingredients I left out. Wow!!! I am blessed. I am publishing the original recipe here, sans meat tenderizer. I made it with pork loin and omitted the wine, chocolate, nutmeg, oregano, almonds and grated orange peel. I was afraid of adding the chocolate because I didn't remember the proportion. And I used about 1/2 cup of orange juice, not because I remembered that element from the original recipe; I was just trying to add a sweet, exotic element. I also used tomato paste (small can)instead of tomato sauce and beef broth which the pork simmered in a crock pot all day.

It was awesome, even if I have to say so myself. Her husband made a special effort to tell me how much he enjoyed it and her oldest son (3 years old) asked me what was in the sauce. You gotta love kids who appreciate food!!

Exotic Pot Roast

4 lbs. boned and rolled rump or top round of beef
3 T. vegetable oil
1 clove garlic, minced
1/2 c. chopped onion
1 t. salt
2 cans ( 8-oz. each) tomato sauce
1/2 c. dry red wine
1 square unsweetened chocolate, melted
2 t. chili powder
1 t. grated orange peel
1/4 t. cinnamon
1/4 t. nutmeg
1/2 t. crushed oregano
1 can (1 lb. ) onions
1 can (1 lb. ) carrots
1/4 c. blanched, slivered almonds

Brown meat on all sides in hot oil in heavy kettle or Dutch oven. Pour off excess oil. Add garlic and chopped onion; sprinkle with salt.
Combine tomato sauce, wine, chocolate, chili powder, orange peel, cinnamon, nutmeg, and oregano; pour over meat.
Cover; simmer until meat is tender-- about 3 hours.
Drain onions and carrots; add to sauce in kettle. Cover; simmer until vegetables are heated through.
Place meat in center of platter; surround with vegetables in sauce. Sprinkle with almonds. Makes 6-8 servings.

I made this with pork tenderloin (I think about 3 - 4 pounds). The vegetables were all fresh so adjust accordingly. I also added fresh green beans because I simply cannot abide not eating green vegetables every day.

Saturday, September 18, 2010

Week 7 and Counting

I gained .6 lbs this week. No wonder; I ate two buffet-style meals this week. One was after church and one was at work. I showed some control at both but I ate seconds at the work buffet. It's okay - I learned during the last weight-loss adventure that lapses occur. I'm just going to keep swimming!!!

Saturday, September 11, 2010

Week 6 and Pumpkin Bars

I lost .2 lbs. this week. No wonder! I had another trying week with a different type of allergy, leaving me with a lump in my throat which has now moved to my chest. I paid little attention to what I ate. I just wanted to be well.

I made pumpkin bars today for my home group. The original recipe called for sweet potato but you know me...I substitute. I doubled the recipe because I thought the blondies were too thin. Here's the recipe:

Sweet Potato Blondies

(Makes 16)

1/2 cup whole wheat flour
1/2 cup brown sugar, packed
1/2 cup mashed sweet potato
1 tsp vanilla extract
1 tbsp canola oil'
1/4 tsp cinnamon
1/4 tsp salt

Preheat oven to 350. Blend all the ingredients in a large mixing bowl. Pour into a greased 8x8 baking pan. Bake for 20-25 minutes until top of blondies begin to brown. Let cool before cutting.

Saturday, September 4, 2010

Week 5 of the Slowest Loser

Last week I gained 1.4 lbs. I wasn't too upset; I had under-calculated points and exercised very little due to a tough schedule. This week, I lost 4.6 lbs. Wow! All I can say is since I had a steroid shot for an allergic reaction, I wasn't feeling any usual stiffness or discomfort so I walked and exercised like a much younger woman. Yahoo! Bring on the drugs! NOT!

Saturday, August 28, 2010

Memory is a Good Thing

A good friend of mine died this week. Whenever I thought of her this week, I smiled. She was a lot of fun. She was a blessing to me and my family. Today was her memorial. Late yesterday afternoon, one of her daughters asked me to speak; I was relunctant to do so. What on earth could I say that would do justice to her memory? Well, God is good. Some things came to me, I said them and I believe (especially after feedback) that I said all the right things.
We are blessed to have a memory because through memories the dead live on. I will miss my friend but she is still alive in me.

Saturday, August 21, 2010

The Slowest Loser, Week 3

Okay. Wahoo! I lost 2.6 pounds this week. Hmmm. What I instantly felt was awe and wonder. How did I lose 2.6 this week but only 1 last week? I ate more of my allotted points this week and exercised one less day. I don't know the reason for the success but I'm just going to keep going. I am thankful.

Sunday, August 15, 2010

This Week's Menu

I made roasted red pepper hummus yesterday, sort of the traditional way with tahini and chickpeas. This is a go-to afternoon snack for me, alternated with Laughing Cow low-fat cheese wedges with crackers or crudite.  I skipped the extra oil and garlic ( more by mistake) and substituted lime for lemon juice. I added my favorite new spice - smoked paprika (I'm in love). Today I made smoked turkey tenderloin ( marinated in vinegar, smoked paprika and poultry seasoning), pickled beets from my garden and brown rice. I was thrown off by a forgotten lunch meeting after church and an overly busy Saturday. So I have to cook something else tomorrow to last me through the week. Preparation is definitely key to success in weight loss.

Saturday, August 14, 2010

Reality Bites

I examined the photos of the last post and realized what some overweight people deal with  - a warped view of reality. I didn't think of myself as fat; I didn't see the rolls of back fat between my upper arms and shoulders. Wow! I am amazed at the level of self-deception.

The Slowest Loser, Week 2

I lost 1 lb. this week. That's to be expected for the second week, even though I really should be weighing on Sunday since that's when I started this diet. Anyway, I also thought it would be good to snap a few "before" pictures to encourage me along the way and to cement in my mind where I do not want to return. All in all, I feel good about my progress.
I apologize for the orientation of the photos; I don't know how to rotate them.

Saturday, August 7, 2010

The Weight-loss Countdown

Okay, mea culpa. I started this blog because I was going to share random thoughts and pearls of wisdom with you, but alas, it seems I don't have much to say unless you make the mistake of asking me a question. I keep telling myself to repent to little avail. I am once again promising to do better.

Toward that end I am exposing some very personal information. For those of you old enough to remember, Clairol used to have a commercial with a tag line of "Only her hairdresser knows for sure," referring to hair dye. When it comes to my weight, only my doctor knows for sure, well, up to now. Now you and my Weight Watcher staff will know as well.

I weighed in last Saturday, July 31st. My weight was.....wait for it, wait...218.6 - that's pounds not ounces. In December 2002, when I weighed in I weighed 222. I obtained Lifetimer status in April 2004 after losing over 50 pounds. So in 6 years I have regained nearly every one of those hard-earned lost pounds.

I have a co-worker who has done so well with weight-loss lately that it encouraged me to get back up on the horse. But this time I am sharing my journey with you. Every loss and perhaps every gain.

So today, I weighed in and have lost 3.4 lbs. my first week. That's not as good as I expected for the first week, but, hey, I'll take it. Perhaps, zumba classes and aqua fitness helped.

Anyway, I am going to be here at least once a week. I promise. This is more for me than you, I suspect. But if this helps someone, pass it on. Stay with me. I need you.

Saturday, April 24, 2010

Ms. Fix-It

I attended a Ms. Fix-it Fair today and it was awesome. It was held at Bluegrass Community & Technical College from 9:00 am to 3:00 pm today (April 24, 2010). Wow!! I'll just tell you up front that we can do what the guys do in so many circumstances. One vendor I met there was Tomboy Tools. All the tools had pink handles; the first thing the woman said was, "they (men) won't take these tools from you." Michelle Bernard offers all kinds of tools for ladies and even has in-home parties. How cool is that? Now that's a party I'd attend. And yes, I am entertaining the idea of hosting one.

I attended:
Simple Electrical Repairs
Granny's Home Remedies
Measure and Install Blinds
Caulking Tile and Tips
Introduction to Doors and Hardware
Home Repair Basics

Granny's Home Remedies gave a lot of home cleaning and yard ideas that use natural solutions. One idea that none of us believed involved keeping flying insects out of your house. Hang a plastic baggie filled with water near your doorway. I know! What???

It's tough to pick a favorite so I'll just say that the doors and hardware one was a little above my pay-grade but the other ladies asked some in-depth questions, so even that session was worthwhile. And I learned one small thing about the "floor-plate" that I didn't even know existed.

There were lots of give-aways and door prizes. My sister won one. Darn. Since I was the second person to arrive, I think my name was too far to the bottom of the jar.
The hit among the give-aways was a caulking gun; you would have thought the jam-packed room of women had received a bouquet of flowers or a new pair of shoes.

I also got a ruler, measuring tape (the retractable type), tools apron, a see-through ruler and lots of tips.

This fair was the fourth one held, so if you get the chance you must attend.

Sunday, March 28, 2010

Spring Break, Part One

My daughter came home for spring break but before coming she gave me her menu requests: cranberry bran muffins, cheese and salami loaf, and quiche. Keep in mind she is capable of cooking these things for herself. Alas, what's a mother to do? I guess it just tastes better if mom cooks it.

She brought a friend home with her - Jessica, who is originally from Columbia (the country not the city in Kentucky). Jessica is just a slip of a woman as you can see.

I took off the Friday before and the Monday after she came. I made the muffins on Friday, cooked paella for a welcome home party on Saturday and made the s&c loaf on Monday. Anyway, Jessica wanted to see a few sites around town on Monday, but everyone was moving really slowly Monday morning. So while I was waiting for them to get ready I made one loaf. After spending most of the day site-seeing and getting pedicures, we returned home. While I had my back turned making a salad, the two young ladies ate nearly all of the loaf. I barely got a slice. Jessica who is just a slip of a woman, ate the most!!! Oh well, I take that as a compliment. I had to make another loaf that night.