Wednesday, October 24, 2012

The 45lb mark

Will never be mine....seriously, I cannot seem to break that threshold.  I have been stuck at the same weight for is entirely possible that I might lose my mind!

I knowwwwwwwwwwwww, I have to get on a regular exercise program. YUK!  I hate exercise.  I have never been one of those people who were like, yeah I think I'll go to the gym and work out for an hour than run 10 miles and drink wheat grass...ick.

My niece does these UltraBeast competitions where she does these insanely physical things, gets filthy dirty in the mud, muck, and mire...runs like a million miles carrying back packs, argh...she loves it.  And she is in killer shape, oh and she is beautiful, and smart.  All those things I never was or at my age, will be.

But I will, as soon as I feel better, because since jury duty, I have been feeling like I was hit by a soon.  I will hate it and I will do it.  And I will never love it, or even like it, but when I lose these last 11 plus pounds maybe I will be able to just exercise moderately to keep it off.  Gross.

Sunday, October 21, 2012

Sunday, love Sunday

Well, I lost the 3/4's of a pound I gained, but nothing beyond that so I guess the week was a wash.

I made the absolute best lasagna for dinner. Two secrets: always have Sunday sauce in the freezer and use no boil lasagna pasta (Barilla makes the best). Beyond that, for a 9 x 13 pan I mix 1lb of whole milk ricotta (whether I make it myself or not) with 6oz of cream cheese, Italian herb blend,about 5 cloves of garlic, chopped, for the cheese mixture. If your a veggie, baked squash works well as a layering item, but I like hot Italian sausage.

Dessert? Pecan pie with, you guessed it, hand-whipped cream.

Wednesday, October 17, 2012

Same old, same old

So not only does jury duty disturb your psyche, sitting on your ass for an entire two days does nothing for your diet; and it is not looking good for anytime soon.

I have deliberately made a point of eating less, literally just fruit, salad and lean protein in the evening, but there are not a lot of steps between the court room and the jury room. I have gained 3/4's of a pound. I have so little left to lose, I just want this to be done. I am never going to figure out maintaining weight if I cannot get to the goal!

Sunday, October 14, 2012

Sundays Off, night

I probably should have said the Sunday posts would be in the evenings...after dinner time, but I forgot to.

I also cannot give you any of the recipes because they are not mine! David Venable, host of QVC's in the Kitchen with David ( has published a cookbook full of his favorite southern recipes and family recipes and damn if I am not going to cook all of them over the next several months of Sundays Off. Truth be told, it may further delay the balance of the weight I have to lose...still have 6.5 lbs to the small goal and 11 to the final goal. I used a pound and a half of butter today and bacon fat! I may have to run a marathon on Sundays or snow shoe or something.

Anyway, check out the pics...and yes that is a throwback to the 70's- Pineapple Upsidedown Cake, made in my favorite cast iron skillet. Want non-stick? Get cast iron and keep it well seasoned!

Wednesday, October 10, 2012

Civic Duty

I have had the opportunity to sit through the jury selection process these last couple of days and have been sworn in. I cannot talk about the case and ultimately the topic is irrelevant to my point.

At first I was very skeptical and apprehensive. No short order asking to evaluate testimony and render a verdict; but, it is so much easier to do that than to do the job of the men and women who have fought and still fight to make sure every American has the right to this process. Not so lucky in many other places.

So the next time you are called to jury duty, instead of figuring out ways to get out of it, embrace the process and be thankful there are people out there defending your right to do it.

By the way, scale has not moved and if jury duty stress cannot drive me to eat, I may have to consider that I have finally found other coping mechanisms!

Tuesday, October 9, 2012

Busy, busy, busy

Wow...between work, my residency for school, and homework, I have not had time to breath, let alone cook, eat, or blog.

I did manage to hold my own with my weight during the residency...and I'm not gonna lie, one of my fellow students and myself snuck in a couple of pints of of Sam Adams Octoberfest.

I was impressed by the breakfast and lunch options on the buffet at The Desmond in Albany. I had enough fruit to available to me to be able to stick to my new lifestyle. And...they had oatmeal, the real thing and plain with all the "stuff" that morphs a good for you food into poison in the side!

Great greens for lunch, lots of fresh veggies and plain, flaked tuna. Dinners were a little scarier, but I stuck to mixed greens and left all else alone.

I have decided that I cannot keep up the quantity of posts now that I am back in grad school. I will post every Sunday, with recipes and photos and a couple of times through the week as I am able.

Monday, October 1, 2012

Didn't cook yesterday!

I had dinner plans for last night because today is my birthday and my husband knew that it had to be last night or never. Not that he minded. For those of you who do not life in NY or do but don't hunt...bow season opened this morning; and, if that is not enough, it is also the first day of fall turkey season. I am now a widow for the next three months.

Now that is not necessarily a bad thing because that is how I live on venison and wild turkey throughout the year. I have given up on the notion of Thanksgiving...I am off to Long Island this year to spend it with my son. And, I have decided to buy a prelit, slimline, artificial tree this year (house is small and when to get the tree is always a fight).

Best news today is that I am beginning my 47th year healthier and smaller than I have been in 26 years! My scale loved me yesterday; I am now down 43.8 lbs, leaving only 11.2 lbs to go.

I have so much left to still do and everyday lived is one less left to live and I am afraid I already tipped the scales in the opposite direction. Enjoy!

Friday, September 28, 2012

Now, it's Autumn in the Northeast!

One of the more interesting and less flexible (for me) about having Multiple Sclerosis is the dreadful effects of the summer heat. By the time September comes I am ready to just cave in. The heat amplifies any exacerbations I deal with. So my fingers are more stupid; my right leg weighs about 100 or so pounds; color prisms in the corner of my eyes more likely than not; skin on fire; and, my all time favorite: sheer exhaustion that I do not recover from.

As soon as the temps drop back into the low 70's and high 60's I am myself again. Slowly, but it does happen. The cooler nights are fabulous and here is the funny whole life until now, fat or thin, I never am cold. Not in mid-winter, not at Candlelight, not at Christmas.

I am cold at night! The last time I remember weighing this little (for me), Andrew (my youngest son) was a couple of months old- that was just barely over 26 years ago.

I am sure it must be because of the weight loss. And, as I look back over the summer, it was not as hard as previous summers and at many points it was hotter!

Moral of my story? No matter how hard it is to lose the weight, or challenges with exercise (incredibly difficult for me in the summer because of the MS, so I don't), living on fresh fruit, fresh vegetables, and lean protein has proven worth it for more than the smaller number on the scale and on the clothes tag. Gotta say, not missing eating processed foods full of fat and ingredients I cannot read - hell not missing fresh cooked foods full of fat.

So close now...then on to maintenance, which I think I have figured out. But more on that when I get there!

One last thing...want to know what Candlelight is? Go to then come visit, there is nothing more breathtaking- not even Rockefeller Center!

Thursday, September 27, 2012

Bacon, again

So I heard the news yesterday that the price of bacon is expected to rise in drastically in price...the story lead was not the price of pork loin was expected to rise drastically- which it will, any corn or grain fed meat because of the drought will go up in price. Bacon.

We are a nation chock full of obese people. We have even managed to make our kids fat...and not just fat, but obese! And so the price of bacon is what headlines?!

I am more concerned with the price of lean pork loin not only because other than venison, it is probably the meat I eat the most, but because it is not full of fat. When will people finally get the message? When do we stop killing ourselves and our families?

I know it is about moderation and balance, but really, I have ranted on this before- in whose world is bacon an okay option? Bacon does not make everything better...learn the basics of cooking, learn how to create layers of flavor without using heart-stopping bacon fat. Argh.

Tuesday, September 25, 2012

I need more time!

I know who doesn't? Sorry I did not post yesterday. I upgraded my iPad to iOS6. I could not get my apps to perform. Better now.

Buggy did not come up for dinner Sunday, so I made penne with meatballs and the most unbelievable Sunday sauce. No pics of dinner. For dessert I sweetened (with honey) some of the ricotta I made and added some chopped dark chocolate with almonds and hit it with raspberries macerated in balsamic vinegar. I took a pic of that... It was fabulous!

It is entirely possible grad school will kill me; I'm not sure. I know it will likely limit the amount of things I say "yes" to at work outside of what I have already taken on. Only so many hours in a day, and I know an MBA is the best way to get ahead...gotta focus!

Have a happy, healthy, and food safe day!

Sunday, September 23, 2012

I'm so close!

Almost...12.3lbs and I will be at the big goal, 7.3lbs until the next small goal. I should be done by the time I see the good doctor again in December.

And, I found a jeweler who can size my wedding band. For now it is a middle finger ring and I am wearing the wedding band Eddie, Eddie Star gave my mom when they were married. My band cannot be cut because it has a continual design all around it. I don't want a ring guard inside because I do. not want the inscription obscured. The jeweler is placing a half band and beveling the edges to smooth down inside the ring so my finger does not get irritated. We have to wait though, because I have lost two ring sizes in the (then) 40lbs I had lost, so with another 15lbs, I will probably be down another full size! Now if only my hair would not grow so fast. For those of you with slow hair growth, look at your diets because seriously my hair grows even faster now than it did when I was unhealthy and it grew faster than normal than. Now it grows almost 3/4" in 5 weeks; used to be it grew a little more than 1/2" in 5 weeks.

On track for homemade cheese, just waiting to add the lemon. I cooked the sauce in the oven all night- the kitchen smelled amazing this morning. All that is left is the eggplant itself and meatballs!

Have a great day. Until next time- remember hard as it can be, eat healthy.

Saturday, September 22, 2012

My time

Here I am waiting for my hair appointment. This is probably my favorite "me" time. My hair -much like my waistline when I wasn't paying attention to it- grows ridiculously fast. My very gray roots have to be covered every five weeks and it has to be trimmed or I do resemble a shaggy dog.

I have already been to the Farmer's market and picked up some of the ingredients for tomorrow. The fall weather is beginning to settle in in the Central Leatherstocking Region of New York and I could not be happier...shorter days, gray days (okay in the sky not in the hair, cooler temps and comfort food dinners- only Sunday. I am making Eggplant Parmesan and fresh ricotta cheese, grilled sourdough, and some roasted tomatoes from my garden. I don't know about dessert yet, I will work on the wine and bask in being pampered!

Thursday, September 20, 2012

Emotional eating

I don't normally post during the day M-F because I am work...I needed a break today! I have had the craziest couple of weeks-worked a half day when I was supposed to off, but...- homework, posting, shorthanded at work, frustrated, cannot get info I need. What a test of my new lifestyle this is.

If I was to be driven to eat out of stress and frustration, today would be the day. So I guess even though the day is totally sucking- starting with Chunky Pup peeing on the mat at the back door, up to this moment of abysmal frustration- I can glorify in my progress. It may actually be that there are other ways to deal with stuff than food.

Blogging is one of them. I don't have a lot of followers, but I do have lots of hits so I have at least found a way to put a "voice" to my frustrations. Thank you everyone that "listens"!

Monday, September 17, 2012

Roasted Corn!

Once a year, every year! I had a beautiful ear of yellow corn, roasted, and dipped in that liquid gold sprinkled a little salt and yummed it up.

Yesterday was chocolate chip cookies, pulled pork (another Bob O'Rourke specialty), corn, and pizza. Thankfully it is over! I definitely have a food hangover this morning. Thankfully, it's Monday and I am back at it.

I am working on the next small goal of 10lbs. That said, I have 9.7lbs left to go!

Sunday, September 16, 2012


Well it only took a month of Sundays (literally since I only weigh myself on Sunday), I have finally broke the 40lb mark! Down 40.7, I know I know, not a lot, but I finally broke it. A little motivation to keep going.

But, alas, it is Sunday AND the last day of the 34th Harvest Festival and I can already hear the roasted corn calling my name...and Bob O'Rourke's chocolate chip cookies, of which I get to eat one on about 2 hours when I have to go bag more because our Membership campaign yesterday was so successful I went through 6 dozen.

And since I don't have the day to cook anything yummy, I am picking up my favorite thing for dinner on my way home--pizza from NY Pizzeria in Cooperstown. It is the closest I have had in all my year's up here to the pizza I grew up on in Brooklyn. And then bed and back it again tomorrow.

Friday, September 14, 2012

Harvest Festival

Fall is my favorite part of the year. It is truly one of the reasons I love the Northeast. I love it even more now that I work for The Farmers' Museum in Cooperstown, NY. The museum is a mid 1800's working farm and Harvest Fest a celebration of Summer's end. Something I am always looking forward to!

The family activities are amazing, the variety of food, and the furry animals make for a great day. The festival is both Saturday and Sunday and I am working both, but only sampling the yummy stuff on Sunday.

Let me tell you, Nestlé Toll House cookies got nothing on our in-house chef Bob O'Rourke's chocolate chip cookies, or the roasted corn dipped in butter, baked goods from the local grange ladies and pies from the church ladies.

There is nothing bad about attending the original Harvest Festival, (now 34th and going strong), and if you are a member of the New York State Historical Association, (NYSHA), your admission is free.

See you there!

Wednesday, September 12, 2012

Busy, busy, busy!

My son came to visit this past weekend. He lives on Long Island, so it's a couple of trains and a 1.5 hour car drive from the train station home!

He said I was tiny. He has seen me this size, but was only two or three and would not remember. We hit a couple of stores (Talbots outlet) and I now have a very elegant, professional, and inexpensive wardrobe- yes, inexpensive and Talbots can be in the same sentence if the word 'outlet' is also there.

I drank a little bit more wine and had some really yummy food Friday, Saturday, and Sunday. I was afraid to get on the scale this morning, I'm not gonna lie, but low and behold I am still down 39lbs. I'm guessing it was the combined 12 miles I walked over the three days whilst we were shopping. Blake has some pretty fab work shoes and a very cool pair of Cole Haan oxfords...DSW, gotta' love it.

So I am back at, although I forgot to attach my pedometer today...lots on my mind: homework due, annual evaluation, and a foundation proposal.

Picture of me and I am not standing in a hole, he is really tall!

Friday, September 7, 2012

The good news is...

Dr. Palumbo was pleased; their scale is about 5lbs off from mine, same as the last time I was there, but the net result is the same-down 39lbs. My blood pressure was 116/72...haven't seen numbers that good in probably 30 years. My pulse was low and the best part: one of my BP mess is going away! Half a pill a day for 7 days then gone. Hurrah. Now I will only need to take five pills every morning, and other miscellaneous scattered through the day.

She wants to see me in three months for a check. I am going to work diligently to take off the next 16 pounds by then.

The weather is cooling down, it will be easier for Chunky Pup and to walk longer and when the snow flies, I have the treadmill. Nothing is unachievable with hard work and dedication.

Thursday, September 6, 2012

The Big Day

Here I am waiting nervously for the anticipated day. My scale says I am still one pound shy of the forty pound mark which was my goal for this appointment, but I am relatively sure Dr. Palumbo will be pleased anyway.

I think we will be adjusting my blood pressure mess at the very least, help with these little dizzy moments I get.

I still plan to keep going; this was just the first hurdle. Sixteen pounds to lose and a lifetime to maintain...Sundays Off lives on!

Tuesday, September 4, 2012

Sunday's dinner

I could not persuade the Blogger app to open yesterday! So Sunday's dinner came out of the smoker beautifully! I had deboned the butt (which is actually the shoulder; the ham is the rear), tied, brined it overnight, dried it, and rubbed it with brown sugar and chili powder,; then, smoked it for six hours. It sliced beautifully and the leftovers I can pull for dinner one night this week. I grilled peppers and onions and did hoagies with the spicy hot smoked sausage. The balance went in the freezer for pizza this coming Sunday.

Short work week, between the holiday yesterday and taking Friday off because...Blakey is coming! He will be so surprised when he sees me!

And I see my Thursday...cannot wait to see the look on her face!

See pics below from Sunday.

Saturday, September 1, 2012

Farmer's Market

Okay, love the lady that makes the chocolate stuffed brioche- tomorrow's breakfast.

Autumn is here, the market starts opening at 9 instead of 8 and pretty soon it will only be every other week. So sad, truly, it is the only part of summer fading away that saddens me. The good news was some of the fall squashes were for sale and brussel sprouts were available. I love to just cut them in half and pan roast them salt and pepper and hit them with lemon juice or balsamic vinegar when they come out of the oven.

But, not tomorrow. Tomorrow I am smoking a pork butt for pulled pork, smoking hot Italian sausages, and smoking spare ribs! A veritable feast! I am making my mom's macaroni salad with peas and carrots, and, for dessert: chocolate shortbread with fresh raspberries, a blueberry sauce (with some of the berries we froze last year), and of course, hand-whipped cream. I think Sam Adams Autumn selections instead of wine to honor the food.

I love three day weekends!

Thursday, August 30, 2012


So losing 38.7lbs still makes me overweight. Really? I guess that is better than the morbidly obese I started at, but really? This is the kind of crap that is discouraging, not plateauing, not back sliding a pound occasionally; but working so hard to get healthy, to hopefully get off one of six meds swallowed every morning- three of which are blood pressure, really?

The one spot of light...55% of the women out there between 40-49, my height, have a worse BMI...whoo hoo (read that in the most sarcastic voice you have available in your head).

I have to lose 16.3 more pounds, not the 11.3 I was hoping for that seemed within reach; somehow 16.3 doesn't. I don't know suddenly it feels unachievable. I think this is the first time I have felt so discouraged.

Wednesday, August 29, 2012


Again...I typed suck, accidentally or subconsciously left out the "t"; of course either one would have worked.

At least this week's midweek weigh-in I know the reason. Back to wishing for menopause. My appointment with Dr. Palumbo is next week and I really, really want to hit that 40lb mark, anything beyond that is gravy as I then head toward the 50lb mark.

All I can say is stick with the plan. WWPP works...if you diligently follow it. The recipes are great and even early on when I was unsure of it all, the pre-made refrigerator meals were pretty good; although, I won't lie, 0 point loading is the best way to never be hungry...3 cups of fresh kale rubbed with fresh squeezed citrus (any) juice and sprinkled with a little sea salt is a huge amount of cannot be hungry after that!

Monday, August 27, 2012

Sunday's dinner

Since I was so well-behaved Saturday at the fair, I held fast to Sunday dinner. I cooked Indian flavored with beef, it literally cooked on the back burner of my stove on low heat all afternoon. My husband cut a head of cauliflower out of the garden so I cooked that with coconut milk and red curry paste and, for the cabbage straight out of the garden I heated some cumin and mustard seeds in a sauté pan until they popped, tossed in the cabbage, gated in some fresh ginger, minced garlic, a little salt, a little pepper, and some chicken stock and let that cook down. A little bulgar wheat / orzo pilaf and some naan and dinner was served. Check out the pic.

I did not make dessert. My theory was that I did have some foods Saturday that even in little bites could not have been good.

Sunday, August 26, 2012

The state fair

I had a great time. I have a very patient husband. He loves me very much.

How do I know this? He grew up on a dairy farm. Yet, yesterday at the fair he let me pet every freaking cow and baby that I wanted to. That's love there were a lot of them.

He also did not make the ugly face when I he bought me fried dough and I only ate a bite of it and threw the rest out...come on, only 1.3lbs from the next landmark goal...would you have eaten all of it? And, so today, I cooked Indian food for Sundays Off, which I really love. But that coconut milk will kill a dish every time in the world of points!

Butter sculpture, fried dough, and my husband; all at the New York State Fair.

Saturday, August 25, 2012

Going to the fair

So excited, on the way to the New York State Fair. I know it seems silly, but let's face it, my early life was spent surrounded by cement and tall buildings. This is an adventure. I will take pics and share stuff through the day!

Friday, August 24, 2012

The 5 Year Plan

The first 5 year plan I did on my own was in 2005. I was deeply grieving the end of my marriage and formulating a sentence was hard enough, let alone a 5 year plan. Now, did I accomplish everything I wanted to by 2010? Some of the 2005 plan I cannot even remember, and probably forgot the day after I committed to it. Which brings me to my first few points:

1. Write it down, you don't have to show to anybody, but it will help.

2. Mix it up a little, have lofty goals and realistic goals.

3. Have one very easy and achievable goal. Once that first one is under your belt, the balance seem easier.

One of my goals was to return to school and work on a B.S. in Art with a concentration in Art History, something I always loved. I graduated in December 2008, with honors. Every semester, I sat down and re-thought the goals for the current year to stay on track for the 5 year plan.

None of this was easy, and this was only one of the goals. I update the plan every year, sometimes realizing something undone is no longer important and always adding to the 5 year outlook.

For example, I have had filing for my passport on the plan for two years; but, I did not take care of until this year-the impetus? I know a wonderful young lady who is starting grad school this week at the University of Toronto and I will be visiting her in January. Passport: checked.

DO NOT become so rigid that you don't allow for the unexpected. My husband is one of the great joys of my life and if I had blocked that door 4 years ago because he was not in the 5 year plan, I would have missed out the best relationship of my life.

Losing weight was in this year of the plan: okay, honestly, last year as well but I did not set myself up for success and this year I did. Weight Watcher's online is probably one of the wise set choices I have ever made. It's fun, it keeps me accountable, and it gives me success. Being accountable in this blog has also been a great motivator. But at the end of the day, the work and diligence falls on me . I succeed or fail based on my actions and non-actions. Letting the universe decide your fate is not responsible living.

I still have at least 12lbs more to go, and as I like to tell people "put on your big girl pants and a smile on your face and just do it". Stop making excuses for failure, and instead, commit to success.

Wednesday, August 22, 2012

The good news is (drum roll, please)

That I have shed the remainder of the weight I gained back. Lesson learned universe, potato chips are NEVER our friend.

So this definitely is motivation for not going crazy at the state fair this weekend. Also, I put a skirt on this morning that barely fit six years ago when I bought it at Banana Republic, a size 12; a don't inhale deeply garment. I weighed about 15lbs more than I do now and not only does it fit, there is enough room that I can invite someone else in! And it's silk, no stretch there. I put it on just to see since the size 10s I was trying on Saturday were fitting well, what a happy day today is starting off as. Let us hope it continues.

So head down, stick to the path, make the goal!

Tuesday, August 21, 2012

I forgot to hit publish!

Wow is it Friday?  This is an addendum to this morning's no-post because I never hit publish!  It almost seems as though it should be Monday.

I am setting myself up for disaster on Saturday.  Oh, I am still going to the Farmer's Market, but only for supplies for next week.  Why, you ask?  Because we are going to the New York State Fair.  I have never been to a state fair, only county fairs.  I love the fair.  I love the furry animals, the hand-crafted goods,  and the food.  So I will e flipping my free day this week and not take Sunday Off...unless I can really stay away from the fried dough, hot sausage rolls, and a plethora of oher baked goods.

I will still take pics, but it will be rather unhealthy...and who knows, I slipped into a size 10 pant over the weekend so that may keep me motivated to stay away from the fried dough; or at least most of it.  I will have to take a bite.

I do not know if this is Weight Watcher's approved behavior, but I think switching my days " off" and allowing myself to sample some of  the good-on-your taste buds, bad-for-the-rest of your body food stuffs makes more sense than going into it blind and unrealistic...I will keep you posted.  Tomorrow is weigh in day, let's see if my stuck trend continues.

Monday, August 20, 2012

My number

Wow was dinner yummy, but I have to say the White Chocolate Panna Cotta was the absolute best thing my taste buds have experienced in months.

Check out pics of dinner and Dessert below.

So my number, this morning and it was a light morning, was 47. Unbelievable how much stuff is used in the morning; and, this does not include the espresso machine, a crucial tool in my day, or getting dressed, or jewelry, just products and tools used to apply them...kind of scary!

Sunday, August 19, 2012

What's your number?

No, not on the scale or on the size tag in your clothes!

I had my hair trimmed, colored (really, you don't really think my hair is this color...), and highlighted yesterday at Ulta salon in Utica yesterday and Cassie, who spends hours making me look as good as I do asked me that question.

What is the number of products you touch to get your hair, make-up, and morning hygiene finished up in the morning? I am counting them up tomorrow morning.

But before I get to that, it is Sunday...happy day. Definitely doing the Chocolate Panna Cotta with Salted Caramel Sauce and for dinner, Meatloaf with Mediterranean flavored: sundries tomatoes, capers, lemon zest, goat cheese, and Carmelites onions and Roasted Brussel Sprouts with browned butter and lemon zest, and Garlic Mashed Potatoes. I'll take pics and post to FBas the day goes on.

And the best news, I lost a half pound of the pound and a half I gained last week!

Saturday, August 18, 2012

Getting ready for tomorrow

I have been in the search for a chocolate panna cotta that I knew would be wonderful without wasting the ingredient money experimenting...mission accomplished. Check out tomorrow's dessert...

Dinner? Have not figured that part out yet. The weather in upstate New York is supposed to be cooler, relatively speaking so maybe meatloaf. One of my all time favorites and I still have a little piece of the Italian bread from the North End.

I will have to check out the Farmer's Market for veggie side dishes...I love the cooler weather! I will not however let it derail the WWPP journey I am on...forever my new life.

Friday, August 17, 2012


I am beginning to understand why weight-loss experts hammer this one home. When you don't get enough of it your brain spends the entire day trying to convince your stomach that clearly it must need energy...undoubtedly, your brain says, in the form of carbs.

Two nights in a row now, awake every two hours between one dog not coming home until after midnight- he is an unfixed beagle and the little girl beagle down the street is behaving, shall we say rather promiscuously. The other pup wants to pee every hour and drink every two; of course, if she drinks from the minute I arrive home from work until bedtime she is much more likely to sleep through the night.

Last night we had to go pick up my car from the shop after work, I had dinner to cook. Oh, that was yummy, cabbage straight from the garden sautéed in a little (very little, like a tablespoon for half a head) olive oil, mustard seeds, fresh ginger, garlic, garamsala, 1/4 cup white wine and 1/2 cup of chicken stock added after the cabbage started to break down. Then I laid some barramundi fillets on top, turned it down and simmered for about 10 minutes. I served it with brown rice pearls and it was yummy. Then I sat with Chunky Pup awaiting the return of Small Pup. And waiting. Army went to bed. Then I waited some more. And waited. And waited. And waited. Until midnight when the very bad Small Pup finally came home.

And then, like small children the every two hour stuff started. Tonight, Army deals with it. I am sleeping!

Wednesday, August 15, 2012


Okay, I know falling off the wagon last week was akin to a mortal sin, but seriously living on fruit, veg, dairy-based protein and avocado and walking I expected a couple of ounces at least to go away. But no, this will linger lending more credibility to my stance that even if I eat like a "normal" person my body does abnormal things.

Sometimes I do think weight loss surgery is the easy way out and wonder why I did not do it when I was ridiculously heavier and had been approved for it. Then I remember, I love food and wine. Oh, and I can achieve goals, and I am disciplined, and I never take the easy way out. .

There, I needed that self-pep talk. Onward and upward, or downward as the case may be to the goal. Retrench, rethink, and redo!

Tuesday, August 14, 2012

Is it Friday?

I know, not even close. It's not even hump day yet, which, considering the scale NEVER moves on Wednesday isn't even a good day. I just feel drained and tired and I want the week to be over.

It is hard to get back on the wagon. I thought I was going to starve to death yesterday, and all I did was eat. I am sure I was craving the bad-for-you crap food that I was eating after I crashed the wagon last week. Today will be easier and tomorrow more so. It is not worth falling off the wagon; I think I will stay on it here to fore.

I think I will go thrift / consignment store hopping at lunch today. I don't always find stuff, but it does keep the cost of clothing down while I am still in rapidly shrinking woman mode (thank you Bob O'Rourke). And I even have another goal other than my doctor's appointment next month- my Blake is coming to visit the end of that week. I can't wait to see him; it's been over a year. Check out below for a pic of my very handsome son!

Monday, August 13, 2012

David Kirchoff, President and CEO of Weight Watchers is right. Never stop tracking, never stop blocking; bad things happen once you reduce accountability. I thought I gained back 1/2lb., again math is not my strong suit. I gained back 1 1/2lbs. Last week was not a good week

I was having problems with my eyes, worked a lot, and got into the potato chips. Another Kirchoff tru-ism: don't have temptations in easy to get to places. Army has to keep that stuff in the man cave. Finally...a practical reason for the man cave.

Pics of last night's dinner. I did Maine mahogany clams with chorizo, garlic, crushed red and lemon zest in white wine with crusty bread and garlic caesar salad. For dessert (no pics), gluten free chocolate cookies from Stagecoach coffee,, that Sarbear gave me before she left Friday. I put them in the freezer for yesterday. Yummy.

On a sad note, Sarbear's last day was Friday, she is off on another great adventure; it was also Hannah's last day, she is off to grad England! I will miss them both

Wednesday, August 8, 2012

I am a bad blogger...

I am late again in posting, but I could not open my eyes enough this morning to see what I was doing.

Woke up several times during the night with my eyeballs glued shut-must have ended up with make up in them when I washed my face. So I look lovely today. The swelling is finally down enough so I can see.

Of course this was after sitting on the floor with Chunky Pup who had some sort of seizure last evening. I think we are all convinced that this weight loss project is as essential for her as it is for me.

Typical Wednesday morning on the scale. Stuck again. Army's cooking dinner tonight so I will be in salad land although I hope he does pick up pork chops; I will have those and my salad. I have fruit to eat all day so I am good there.

I am so on track for all this year's goals. Truth be told I have accomplished all but one and it is only August. The five year plan is on track; Sarbear looked at me like I was nuts when I mentioned the five year plan. Apparently not everybody has one. But then how do set goals, track progress, and achieve what you desire. I may have to talk more about this in future blog posts.

Tuesday, August 7, 2012

So here is the hobby...

SarBear thought they were amazing and my boss said that posting them would make me more interesting to my readers.  I don't know you decide.

When I was working on an undergrad degree, I explored the art studio, not just art history, side of life.  I fell into Artist Books, which reflecting on it all is not that surprising because I was already making Art Quilts.  I had a great time and hands down the best professor.  Nancy Callahan is something extraordinary and if you ever have the chance whether at SUCO or elsewhere to take a class from her, do so.  It will change your life.

Many of these were born (like all interesting art) out of the experiences of life.  This first one was in honor of my mother who passed in the early part of this century.  She was a devout Catholic and a women of great strength; how else could she have lived after my sister died?  Her faith, more so than her religion, defined her and gave her purpose.  She had converted to Catholicism from Episcopalian long before I was born and as a convert learned more about the religion and culture than any of us raised in it.

I wanted this to appear as a shrine that had been found in a deep, dark, church basement somewhere.  A self-contained unit that was full of the artifacts of faith.  I think I achieved that.  The one book is a bible (not hers, that I will have forever), the pages glued and niches carved out to hold her rosaries, and the rosaries she gave me.  The opening is covered with tulle because the one strand is made with rose petals and I wanted the scent to be apparent.  The a bible that can only be opened to the book of Ruth, one of her favorites.

So here goes, and tomorrow we will return to food and life and weight and eating...

Monday, August 6, 2012

Not sure which was better

The bread was worth the week long wait. Even having to freeze it, defrost it, and heat it up it was better than any bread I can find locally. Of course I could always take a road trip to Bread Alone; never been? Worth the road trip or mail order. I like the road trip; but that's a conversation for another Sundays Off plan.

Dinner was phenomenal; the bread, the sauce, the meats, yum it all came together beautifully. Albeit a little later than expected so dessert was even later, but oh, so worth it. Check out the pics. Alas it is now but a memory because it is Monday and I have a 11.3 lbs until goal!

Saturday, August 4, 2012

Sunday Sauce

Technically will begin today.

Of to the Farmer's Market this morning to get all the "stuff" I live on all week. I hope Middle field Orchard has more peaches; their's are the best I have had so far.

Then off to the grocery store for stuff for Sunday Sauce; ground pork and veal for meatballs, beef to cook down in the sauce; hot sausage; maybe some eye round to pound thin to stuff, roll, and tie. I have to start the cooking tonight because I am working at least part of tomorrow. I think dinner will be late and romantic; but appetizers early. All this because I have bread from the North End of Boston in my freezer!

I have to pick up the stuff for homemade ricotta too. I am doing a version of David Rocco's Cassata Rustica. I love his show on the cooking channel, I think it's on at 3:30 on Sundays, but it has been a while since I have had a chance to sit down and watch it. Check out the guide at: I decided I would like to use a chocolate sponge and eighty-six the pie (gross!)crust.

I picked up some wine, Chianti and Valpolicella...yummy.

Tomorrow is weigh in too. I am guardedly optimistic; I know this sounds silly, but I feel like I can feel my hip bones better.

Tomorrow there will be pictures, I might start posting some on FB today as I start the cheese and cake.

Enjoy today.

Friday, August 3, 2012

Not as hard as I thought

I always (literally) that it was impossible to make good food choices when I was not in control of the menu. What I have learned is that I have to be in control of myself. Case in point: last evening, another work event with food.

I had the good fortune to represent the museums at an event half by one of our funders; it was a picnic and an evening show. I have not seen Music Man in years and was looking forward to that...the picnic of course terrified me. I could have easily made poor choices and turned my meal into a catastrophe, instead I paid attention, made good choices had two glasses of wine and still had points leftover!

On the buffet: fresh baby spinach with thinly sliced red peppers, thinly sliced London broil, creamy dressing, crumpled bacon, a vinaigrette based red-skinned potato salad, chopped fruit, and chocolate chip cookie bars. Could have been a disaster right?

I ate spinach leaves and red pepper strips, a few slices of London broil ( I am getting better at eyeing a serving, but always take a little less and guess high on the points), and a mountain of fruit. Of course, Army can eat anything and never gain an ounce had a little of everything. Apparently the cookie was pretty good!

Enjoy your day; remember good food choices can be made anywhere.

Wednesday, August 1, 2012

Dear Brain:

We are not living in a time of famine; I am no longer of child-bearing years. I am not menopausal. I am giving this body you live in less unhealthy food, more fruits, veggies, lean protein, and exercising more for its own good.

I do not wish to arise at 5:30 am for the sheer pleasure of it, but I do so in service to this body that has been abused over many years and to make it a nicer home for you to live in.

I have not given up gluten for the benefit of my taste buds, that's for damn sure. I have done so in the hope that the less toxins stored within will make this home of yours more appealing to you.

I have certainly not given up drinking wine Mon-Sat out of some urge to drive myself to the brink of insanity, but so that you will feel safer and more content in clear surroundings.

And all I ask in return is that you talk to your body contact and ask it to release some of these last 10+lbs it is holding onto for dear life!

I am tired of being STUCK!

Thank you. I look forward to your prompt response.


Tuesday, July 31, 2012

Hobby pics will have to wait

Sorry, more exciting news than what I do in my down time (what the heck is that anyway); Jess went to Boston this past weekend and not only that, but to my favorite place ever...the North End.

She posted a pic on FB and commentary about a sandwich and great bread. She brought me some back...yummy. So the exciting news- Sundays Off is set for this week. I don't care how hot it is, Sunday sauce and pasta, probably homemade. I'll make some ricotta, some pesto, grab good Chianti or splurge on an Amarone. So excited, so good.

Have a happy, healthy, and safe day!

Monday, July 30, 2012


...was good. I did not get pics of dinner, but I did a shot of the appetizer. My iPad needed to be charged and I did not want dinner to get cold waiting. No pics seemed like a better option!

I bought absolutely gorgeous eggs from Painted Goat- on Saturday, so I thought tonight I would an omelet with some garden fresh veggies. I still have some zucchini and tomatoes from the market. I also picked up some feta from the Painted Goat. I like eggs and they are a great low-point source of protein. I know I have salad mix and there is probably a cucumber or two in the garden (about the only thing in the garden) and of course avocado.

I am hungry already and dinner is hours away!

Have a healthy, happy, and safe day.

Sunday, July 29, 2012

It's Sunday!

First the bad news...scale has not changed; however my logical mind is keeping my emotional mind at bay. Monday, for the first time in well longer than I care to say, I started exercising in earnest and since for the most part I have been losing weight at a slow pace just by modifying food intake, if I have built any muscle in the last 6 days that may be off setting my 1/2 lb weight lost. Comforting though I'd also the knowledge that while muscle does weigh more, it takes up less room. So I'm good...for now. If this keeps up, I may have to rethink my current logic.

Not gonna lie... I still had a muffin this morning and Sundays Off dinner is still happening. I will continue on the treadmill and I think I may incorporate my WWPP exercise DVDs for an extra boost heading into the week.

I will start posting some photos this week of what goes on in my world when I am not working, or otherwise engaged. I think it is called a hobbie...Sarah, who I mentioned yesterday, was completely amazed, I think what she said was that I'm crazy. Side effect of having a brain that never shuts off. I will post pictures on FB as the day goes on and I begin dinner prep.

Have a good day!

Saturday, July 28, 2012

I know, I know late again!

Saturdays are getting away from me in a big way!  It took me most of the day to figure out tomorrow's dinner from the ingredients I picked up between the Farmer's Market and the grocery store.  All I knew when I left the house this morning is that there would be a goat cheese component.  I have to whip some extra to bring to Sarah with crackers on Monday.  She is another one of those spots of sunshine and almost eagerly listens to me go on and on and on about food and wine.

And Lord knows, I do.  Everybody I run into who I have known asks me what I am doing to loose weight, because they have tried "everything".  Not.  Weight Watchers Points Plus works, IF YOU FOLLOW THE WHOLE picking and choosing, no forgetting to track, no unaccounted licks or tastes.  I bumped into my neurologist at the Farmer's Market today and he did a double take, did not recognize me at first- truth be told, if I had not started speaking to the lady at the goat cheese booth, I am not sure he would have. I have been told I have recognizable voice.  I do not know if that is good or bad.  I see him every 6 months or so; he has not seen me since I started this.  I cannot wait to go see my Primary Care doctor in September and get on the scale.  Yes, I said it, I want to get on the scale.  The beauty of what I am doing is that I eat really, really good food Monday-Saturday.  Beautiful salads with grilled chicken or fish, fruit until I am sure I could turn into a grape (melon, strawberry, honey dew, whatever) so I never feel deprived and I am never hungry.  Except if it is the non-stomach hungry otherwise known as the emotional beast!  But even that, with discipline and building new habits and actually dealing with emotions is changing.

Speaking of emotions, my husband made me cry.  In a good way.  He can be really wonderful and he has done something fabulous to help me out and I felt so overwhelmed I cried.  I like to not hide my emotions, good or bad.  Of course, I also still have to learn a great deal about editing the words that go with the emotions!

How does this sound for Sundays Off:  Butter crackers with herb goat cheese, fresh herbs from my container garden of course; probably rosemary because I love it and some fresh cracked pepper.  Dinner:  Pork chops stuffed with goat cheese, kalamata olives, sage, rosemary, thyme, and S&P.  Sides:  probably mixed green salad and rice pilaf.  My favorite part, dessert:  Grilled peaches with honey on toasted pound cake and (of course) hand whipped cream.  And a bottle of Baco Noir; a New York wine that I have never had and these grapes originated in France, but apparently climate changes mostly wiped them out over there.  I wonder if we sent any back in the form of root stocks when were helping Europe rebuild there viticulture  after phylloxera wiped out their native plants.  Yeah, I am a wine geek.

I'll post pictures tomorrow!

Friday, July 27, 2012

What I learned last week

I was very sad last week. Too sad to even post one day. But I learned something very powerful about my new self and my new approach to life with food as my friend, not my enemy.

I cried my way through the grief and through the pain that losing someone who at one point in life meant a great deal me caused. I smiled through the tears that happy memories bring when loss is still so fresh. I am by no means done grieving, but I am not raw with emotion. My point?

I worked through the emotions, I did not eat through my emotions. And yes, it hurt. And yes, it made me feel vulnerable. And yes, there were moments when sadness was overwhelming. And I felt every moment. I did not soothe the pain with food, I did not distract myself with food. I felt.

I am not sure when the last time was that was a true statement. I felt.

Thursday, July 26, 2012

Clothes and the weight loss process

So what do you wear to work when you have lost 35+ pounds, you still have 10+ pounds to go, you have not bought new clothes and you have a meeting first thing with a powerful woman who owns her own fashion empire? No, seriously, this is not a rhetorical question.

Eek, maybe I should buy a fee more in between pieces. Around regular people who have regular jobs, I can still pull off relevant with a few belts and jackets or my shrugs since they are knitted anyway; but this...HUGE!

The glories of weight loss, let's hope I can loose the balance of this before winter. I have two pair of pants that will be big, but still smaller than the stuff I have out for summer. My clothes are literally going to start falling off my body. I know I hear people crying in sympathy, but it is not like this just happened by itself; I have been working my tail off.

Have a hasty, healthy, and save day.

Tuesday, July 24, 2012

The wagon

Eek, it drove by and I fell out of it! Never have left over yummy, yummy dessert from Sundays Off on Tuesday. That grape cake just kept calling me and calling me; louder and louder until I caved in. So possibly the treadmill has come to live here at the perfect time. Guess I will be on that a little longer tomorrow.

My dad turned 75 yesterday and he is pretty happy, healthy, and seems to be content with his life. That is where I would like to be at 75; hell, I would like to be there now. I am a little over twelve pounds away from the first two, but the last one, I have no clue how to get there. Will I have to wait another 25+ years? Content is not a goal to work toward like a passport, losing 50 pounds, or paying off my car. I'm not sure how to achieve that. I do not even know the steps to take. I should check with my Dad, maybe he can impart the wisdom of his years and make the next leg of this journey easier. Because somehow I think maintaining a steady weight, not using food for comfort, and living a healthy life depends on it.

Have a happy, healthy, and safe day


Clearly, I am much better at eating less than exercising more. Not a big fan of sweat...tanner streaks, mascara runs, skin is slippery. Gross.

But, these last 12ish lbs are going to need a little more help than me and Chunky walking at night. Enter the TREADMILL. Kind of had to do it. A coworker (thanks Michelle) was selling one for $25-not a typo- really $25. It was like the heavens were speaking.

So there I was this morning, thanks to my brilliant husband, walking on the treadmill. The pups alternated between fascinated and fearful. Of course, I could not figure out how to get opened; it folds up for storage but since I won't be storing only using I don't have to worry about figuring it out. That is what wonderful, helpful, and brilliant husbands are for!

Have a happy, healthy, and safe day.

Monday, July 23, 2012

Nothing like I planned

Believe it or not, I could not find classic Bobby Flay recipes! I know crazy, right? So rather than having to look too much or too hard (sounds a little lazy, doesn't it?) I opted instead to go through an older collection of recipe cards with wine selections.

Dinner was grilled salmon cakes and corn cakes that technically should have been born from leftovers. The corn on the cob was, the salmon I bought a beautiful fillet from Price Chopper and grilled and cooled it. From there I pulled it apart, added all kinds of yummy stuff and made a red pepper remoulade, so good. I made some mashed potatoes for my very patient and loving husband (I did have a little myself) and a wonderful watercress and mixed herb salad with a beautiful fresh orange juice and blood orange olive oil vinaigrette garnished with miniature violets.

Dessert was stellar. I made a grape, wine, and olive oil cake...with some hand-whipped cream. I think the cake would have been better if I had used Iced Wine, but I did not have any so I used the next best thing, Sweet Little Blond from Rustic Ridge winery a little place in Burlington Flats that works with a Finger Lake winery to produce some fair priced okay wines and does tastings all the time ( I will definitely change up next time I make the cake.

Here's some photos of the day in food. Have a happy, healthy, and safe day.

Sunday, July 22, 2012


So I did not post yesterday amid the craziness of finishing some stuff that had to get done before 11AM and getting my car cleaned, inside and out (first time in 2 years), and getting out the door to head to the "Cultural Berkshires" for my Dad's 75th birthday. Technically, not until Tuesday.

As I have previously mentioned Mary Ellen, my step-mother is an amazing cook and hostess. Turns out my nephew is an excellent grill master as well. My sister and brother-in-law were there as well. With food issues running amok in my head that scared me the most. We have not spoken pretty much since we buried my mom. It went well. I saw my nieces and met my nephew. Shaun (my younger niece) on the surface has an uncanny likeness to my sister who passed when Shaun was just a wee tot. We're FB friends now- I'm thrilled.

We had to drive back so we missed cake, but it was a great day and I am hoping a first, not a last, turns out both my nieces are pretty cool and my nephew seems like an excellent young man.

My Dad and Army were off to the side for a little while, deep in conversation. Argh...Fumble came up in conversation later so who knows what that was about. Fumble is a story for another day.

And the good news...because my step-mother is such an amazing cook, there was stuff I could eat! I stayed away from the cheese plate and crackers and lox and pumpernickel with all the trimmings-mostly because I do not like smoked salmon. I ate the veggies from the tray, less the dip and had some shrimp without the sauce. I had some sliced beets and tomatoes with feta, some quinoa salad my sister made with blueberries and pineapples, and some of the amazing steak the aforementioned Grillmaster did. It was fabulous. I would love more days like that with my family...wish my boys had been there. Would have been perfect..

And the other good news, on the scale this morning down 36.9lbs. It has been so long since I have seen that number, I was almost unsure how to say it!

Have a happy, healthy, and safe day. And yes, still going to Flay-land for Sundays Off; stay tuned!

Friday, July 20, 2012

Friday, almost funday!

This was a hard week. I nearly fell off my wagon several times this week-completely due to a lack of preparedness. I went to bed without dinner Wednesday night because it was to friggin' hot to breath, let alone eat. Woke up yesterday morning same problem so I did not think about cutting up fruit etc., so I was ready to chew my hands off by afternoon. Thankfully the cafe had fresh fruit all cut up...I inhaled two of those. I am stopping at Price Chopper this morning to grab more.

It is so easy to be seduced by the dark side if your defenses are down. I have learned on this journey that being prepared and, I have said this over and over, making as much routine and done by habit as possible makes this very doable- almost easy. And even now five months into the lifestyle change the temptation is there and it would be so easy to revert, but I love that my clothes are getting huge, my body smaller, and my energy level higher. Enough motivation to keep going!

Have a happy, healthy, and safe day

Thursday, July 19, 2012

Too hot to eat

Who'd a thought those words would ever come out of my mouth! The smell of corn on the cob cooking last night made me nauseous; I could not even cut up Chunky Pup's burger, the smell made my stomach flip and I love my husband's burgers.

If it stays this warm, I'll be a toothpick by August 1st. I have never experienced this. I don't do well in the heat as it is and this has been extreme heat. Chunk and I have not even been walking at night because I am sure if I don't drop from the heat she will.

If you take a look at Chunk, you will notice that while I have lost 35lbs she has lost nothing, except maybe a little more self-esteem. Of course, here is the difference: I no longer allow Army to feed me; but, since Chunk is a slave to food, she is a captive audience!

Wednesday, July 18, 2012


Grief is a powerful emotion. I think probably because it consists of so many emotions.

I think, like many of us, life gets in the way of staying in touch with people who are important in your life...even if that importance was decades ago. I remember being very young and, honestly I think during the time my parents were divorcing, we spent what now to me seems like a great deal of time with my Aunt Helen and Uncle Eddie. They had blueberry bushes in the backyard and my sisters and I would go out in the morning and pick them for our cereal. Aunt Helen had candy dishes and plastic covers on the furniture in the living room. There was a big (to my mind's eye) playroom downstairs with a ping pong table and I remember my cousins (Aunt Jo and Uncle Tommy's boys) and my cousin Maggie (Aunt Helen and Uncle Eddie's only child) being down there.

Through the years and into adulthood I stayed in touch. More and more peripherally. I was greatly saddened by Uncle Eddie's death, it came as quite a shock. Somehow family thought my sister was communicating the situation and my sister somehow thought it was not her story to tell, blah blah (more bad communication. By the time I got "over" it, life got in the way. And after my mom passed, I was not able to embrace any family relationships, not for a very long time.

Many of my memories of my young life are blurred and indistinguishable. I think this makes the ones I do have stand out with great clarity. That is how my memories of my Aunt Helen are. I pretty much suck at personal relationship maintenance, years of counseling and the best answer I ever arrived at is that this is true of many children who are very young when their parents divorce, a factor perhaps in the likelihood of generational divorce. But, at some point, I did become an adult and could have reached out to reclaim those relationships with my father's family. I have some regrets in my life and that is certainly one of them. I have been trying to get together with my dad and stepmom for three years now, but between their family members being ill and passing, my surgery, and career building life keeps getting in the way.

For my fellow emotional eaters, stop letting life get in the way of what is important. Reach out it may actually be worth putting your vulnerability on the line.

I will miss my pint-sized, impeccably dressed, and well mannered Aunt Helen and will cherish those memories of a young and oblivious little girl for the remainder of my years.

Have a happy, healthy, and safe day

Tuesday, July 17, 2012

Too sad to be fun today

Sorry, bad news and too sad to be lighthearted about anything; working on staying too busy to drown sorrow in food/beverage.

Monday, July 16, 2012

Now I'm Inspired...

So the inspiration came too late but it was in the process of standing in the grocery store looking for something quick last night that it came to me. So I am set for next week!

I did a Semi-Homemade last night and while I said that to my husband it hit me. Last night was about what I could do quick with a little help from the grocery store a la Sandra Lee so Food TV chefs popped into my head, and who is my favorite? Bobby Flay. Let's face it he's the complete package: came up through the business from a dishwasher and moved up, toured the land of my people to inform the world that the Irish can cook, and he's married to an incredibly accomplished and talented woman. Okay, so he went to the French Culinary and no the CIA, but that is not a terminal flaw. So next Sunday will be full of Flay-vor.

Last night I did take some help from the grocery store in the form of pizza dough and wa-la:

Sunday, July 15, 2012


I have even less inspiration than yesterday, my weight has not budged, it's raining.  Wow the perfect tri-fecta for depression.  I definitely will not be able to reach the goal I wanted to be at by next weekend without having lost any weight this week.  I would have to starve myself and that is NOT what this time is about.  This time is about doing it the right way and being healthy while I am at it.  I somehow get the feeling that this last fifteen will be harder than the first thirty-five were.  Yeah me.

I did buy some WW exercise DVDs when I started this process.  In fact, at the time I practically had a nervous breakdown because something happened to my laptop, aka lifeline to the outside world, and I could not play DVDs.  I had that fixed and then never started using them anyway.  I guess those in the morning and walking Chunky Pup every night is no longer optional or I will be whining about this until the cows come to speak.  Thank God I don't deal with that.

I have a picture of myself (and my sisters) that had to have been taken after I turned five...because before I was five I was wearing size 3T because I was still so small.  I was born a little early and was actually pretty tiny at first, then at some point I found Jewish rye bread, toasted and that was the end of small.  And, I know shock and surprise, here I am in this photo, chunky; but all decked out in pink.  My mother made those outfits for us.  I loved pink then and it is still my favorite color.  Among her many other talents, my mother was a pretty amazing seamstress.  The capes were fully lined in matching, solid, shiny, silky stuff and dresses were sleeveless sheaths.  Mine was pink with white,  Steph's had some yellow, and Denise's some blue.  Those colors were primarily ourfavorites.  And pink still mine, Steph's until she died was blue, and Denise- well I don't much know what her favorite anything is anymore.  Like all families, we have some level of dis-function and Denise and I are it.

Anyway, back to the picture, I mention it because weight and I have literally had a life long relationship.  Up and down, up and down, up and down.  Fat pictures when I was in grammar school, better pictures when I was in middle school, fat pictures early high school, thinner pictures the year my senior portrait was taken.  I like that picture, it is currently hanging in the living room.  Fat pictures after Blake was born, thinner after Andrew, fat after Steph died, thinner for a couple of years, horrible after mom died, thinner for a couple of years, then back up again, now down again.  I prefer to keep the next couple of decades of my life on the down side; honestly I don't think I have the time to loose it again.


I may not have a Sunday off this week since clearly my weight has not budged doing what I always do; so my theory in life, "do what you have always done and get what you have always gotten"...if it is good stick with it, if not change it up!

Have a happy, healthy, and safe day!

Saturday, July 14, 2012

Yeah...the week is over

Technically, today, but for me the work week ended last night at 9:00PM.  One of the absolute longest week of the year and I added a grant deadline into the mix. But it's over.  I was too tired to go to the Farmer's Market today...too tired to do too much of anything; the humidity is exhausting me.  I'll admit this is the one time of the year I whine about having MS.  Everything is worse, all of my issues are amplified and I get cranky quicker, have less patience for the stupid stuff in life and the annoying people.  I have not planned Sunday's Off yet, with Army out of town and not coming back until tomorrow I have no idea what he is even interested in and we have a going away party tomorrow afternoon as well.  I can't believe my little Amanda is moving away; even work has been different without her around the last two weeks.  She always brought a spot of joy to my day.  I know we won't be staying long...Monday morning always comes too quick for me to do much on Sundays other than cook because I have to get to bed early, especially this time of the year.

I can't even think of anything I want to bake, cook, grill, or smoke-not for dinner, not for dessert.  Everything sounds flavorless, tasteless, and boring.  Argh...let's hope that food sounds better in the morning or Sundays Off may be dinner out!

Friday, July 13, 2012


I probably should be out walking instead of enjoying this fabulous first latte of the day! The sky is just beginning to light up; it is early and both Chunky Pup and Small Pup are still sleeping, as is my husband who is heading north later today for a couple of days at the hunting camp. I am pathetic when he is gone, the pups and I mope about.

I have decided that this time when he is gone I will not eat because I miss him, I will not mope about, and, most importantly I WILL channel all those emotions into walking. So I should have a gazillion activity points by Sunday afternoon when he gets home.

I will be occupied for a while this evening because the organization's Annual Gala is tonight and I will be helping for a little bit. My colleague, Jess, has outdone herself and it will be a fun event for those attending.

It may still be light enough when I arrive home to take the pups for a quick walk...and then a glass of wine, it is after all Friday.

Have a happy, healthy, and safe day!

Thursday, July 12, 2012

eBay might become my new best friend

My fall / winter clothes always cost boatloads more than spring / summer. Whose don't? Generally wool, suede, and (current trend) faux fur. Caitlin (who is tiny) who works in my office mentioned once that she bought a "lot" of clothing in her size and so I went looking for advice. I think that is the way I will go with the items I cannot have altered...and four sizes later already, there are only two wool suits that I am looking at having remade. I have sweaters, dresses, coats, and pants so it will be new adventure.

BTW, Caitlin appears to be tiny for all the right reasons. She's a vegetarian plays tennis, and runs. Tiny people are not tiny by accident anymore than those of us who are plump are that way by accident. Both are based on a series of habits- one good, one bad.

Now that I seem to have a better grasp on the food habit, and it takes at least 30 days to develop a new one or change an old one (which I think is easier than just eliminating one, but more on that another rant) and I have been at it since Feb 5, I am thinking about working on another habit. This habit will be crucial for maintenance, which is a little more than 15lbs from now and I want to have plan in place. I have to figure out regular exercise, in addition to walking Chunky Pup. How to fit it in my day, how to not have it be weather dependent, and how to not have it cost me an arm and leg.

The future is mine...I just have to grab it! Have a happy, healthy, and safe day!

Wednesday, July 11, 2012

I did the math

Okay, so I spent a little time thinking about yesterday's post last night. In the days of old with a little bad behavior here and there I probably could have lost 5.7lbs in 12 days. But this journey is about change, about doing this the right way to get to the smallest number possible on the clothing tag. I will commit to getting as many extra activity points as I can, but honestly I cannot cut my point intake anymore than it is, not safely and I don't want to go there anymore.

Amazing I can have this clarity AFTER having stepped on the scale and being stuck again...God I hate Wednesdays. And this week is crazier than most: I have a grant to get out, Development Committee (of the Board), Annual Meeting, Members' Reception (both on Thursday). Thankfully, I only have to help with the check in for the Gala on Friday night, which is the same day as the development meeting. Argh, and the higher you go up the ladder the longer this week (Board Meetings) becomes; I would think that would be true regardless of where the job is, it is more about the level of responsibility and I continue to position myself to take on more and more. With my goals I wonder sometimes what level of crazy I am!

Have a happy, healthy, and safe day!

Tuesday, July 10, 2012

Another reason to stick to the plan

For many reasons concerning things like insane schedules, foot surgery, and incredibly I'll relatives I have not seen my dad and the aforementioned baker of the most wonderful chocolate cookies, my stepmother, in about three years.

My Dad's 75th birthday is this year and I asked a couple of months ago if the family would be gathering to mark such an event, but because of a very ill relative no one could commit. My stepmother sent an email yesterday and there will be a get together in a couple of weeks...I have no idea who or how many, but I would like to lose the 6.7lbs by then. For me, it would be a personal low and a huge confidence boost.

It is good to have a goal...and a sense of urgency.

Monday, July 9, 2012

Dinner was great, but not quite as planned

First things first...that little half pound gain must have been a false positive (negative?) because I now only have a 7/10's of a pound until the 35lb down mark...yeah me! So now officially 15.7lbs left. It will have been about 26 years (right after Andrew, my youngest, was born)since I weighed so little, well not little; I'm sure the flippin' BMI charts would be content if I dropped another ten after that. We'll see- clearly anything is possible.

Onto dinner, as you can see below, I did the smoked pork roast...soooooo good! And I did the crostini (olive bread from the bread guy at The Farmer's Market) with carmelized onions, figs, and cheese, but changed it up from the original plan of goat cheese to Gorgonzola. Dessert was the biggest change; I love the astringency of balsamic vinegar with chocolate. Instead of buttery and sweet shortbreads, I made deep, dark, slightly bitter chocolate brownies. Still kept the hand whipped cream, added a little sea salt to finish and poof fabulousness!

Saturday, July 7, 2012

Aida tonight and dinner on the Nile!

We are going to see the opera ,Aida, tonight with dinner ahead of time. I have sampled much much food from the area, but I have never had Egyptian food. Morrocan, Syrian, Israli,Lebonese. I don't know, it will be interesting. I do know who is catering it, and that in and of itself will be a real treat for me because I use her at the events I host at the museums and therefore never actually have the opportunity to enjoy the food- just little tasty bites here and there. Still and all, it is Aida that I am most excited about. It is my favorite opera.

Farmer's Market today, I have to arrive early this week so I do not miss out on strawberries; Sundays Off dessert is Strawberry Shortcake. Little ones that I love to make with- no laughing at me, I know this will sound crazy- Bisquick shortbreads. They have the buttery sugary taste of a shortbread and the texture of a biscuit, best things ever and definitely not even close to Points friendly. The strawberries will macerate in aged balsamic that is a little thicker and syrup-like and, of course, hand-whipped cream.

For dinner I took a pork butt out of the freezer and I am using my "injector" marinade for the first time to inject adobo sauce hopefully making a spicy flavor of Mexico pork dish. But with the crazy heat, it is smoker city tomorrow, no oven for me.

Have to get the pups out for their walk in the early morning tomorrow; don't think we will have time today; a shame really...look at this morning's view from Lake Whitehouse!

Have a healthy, happy, and safe day.

Friday, July 6, 2012

Activity points

So probably the most important part of WWPP after the points values for food are the ones for exercise.

Not gonna lie...I am not as good about tracking them or earning them. Admittedly, in the cooler weather I am better about both than I am now when my skin is melting off my body, on fire, and just plain cannot bare to breathe.. So I try to take advantage of early morning and later in the evening so that I can walk Chunky Pup since this whole journey is as much about getting her healthy as me.

Off we trotted this morning. I took Small Pup too so he doesn't feel left out. It is hard getting two steps without stopping- Chunky's nose is always glued to the ground, it's a wonder she has not plowed face first into a tree and Small Pup is alway wants to head in whichever direction you currently are not going in. Makes walking for exercise a real challenge!

I figure if I get dragged up and down the road a couple of times a day that counts as activity points- in this scorching heat and with the MS, it is about the best I can hope for this time of the year!

Have a healthy, happy, and safe day.

Thursday, July 5, 2012

Second half of the mini-week

So after that half pound weight gain, I have set myself (I hope) for success; especially in light of the fact that we are going to see Aida at the Glimmerglass Festival and we are having "Dinner on the Nile" this weekend; does not sound low cal, low fat, or points friendly. Depending on what it is and where the scale is Dinner on the Nile may have to be Sundays Off.

I have tomato-yellow- onion, and cucumber salad and cherries for today and lots of water. I took chicken breast out of the freezer for dinner, I made Army potato salad yesterday, so he can have that and I have stuff for salad. Easy and quick, I love it because it gives me plenty of time to walk Chunky Pup and Small Pup, who by the way now jumps into the ditch when he hears a truck coming. Then he stays in it until I tug his leash; so he did learn something after the pick up truck incident. Unfortunately, he hasn't learned that cars, 4 wheelers, and motorcycles are just as dangerous to the well being of Small Pups!

Have a healthy, happy, and safe day!

Wednesday, July 4, 2012

Anniversary Dinner

No, I did not take the day off...I'm just late.

Last night's dinner at the Lake Front was not what I had planned on, but was fabulous none the less. They no longer had the dish on the menu I had planned on ordering.  Instead I went with the Crostini with Duck Confit, Caramelized Onions, Figs and Gorgonzola.  Yummy!  For dinner I had the Roasted Beet Salad.  That is one of my go to's when I see it on the menu.  I also order dressing on the side, and don't dress it, but I love the roasted beets and the feta cheese, and on a bed of mixed greens, it is always a healthy choice.  Last night's was topped with spiced nuts, rather than sweet, I know those are rolled in melted butter and herbs so I did not eat all of them.  Two glasses of Frey Chardonnay and dinner was done!

Now the unfortunate part of Sundays Off dinner on Sunday and last night over indulgence was a .5lb weight gain.  Now back to fruit, vegetables, and lean protein and no alcohol during the week!  I just committed to losing more; I can't start going back the other way now!

Have a healthy, happy, and safe day.

Tuesday, July 3, 2012


Note to self-again-no caffeine after 1pm; and be careful of allergins that makes my eyes itch. My eyes kept running all night, the build up dried on my lashes, my lashes stuck together and continuously woke up in a panic because I was unable to open my eyes. Arrgghhhh. My left eye is just beautiful; I look like I have been on a three-week drunk. Personally, I have never been on a three week drunk, but I have seen people who have, just saying it's not pretty.

Obviously, I kept Chunky pup awake all night as well. Check out her morning pic!

Busy day today and dinner out tonight. I looked at the Lake Front's on line menu and have identified dinner. I am glad I'm off tomorrow, I have a ton of stuff to do Nd never enough time to do it.

Have a happy, healthy, and safe day.

Monday, July 2, 2012

4 day work week

This will be an interesting week. Only 4 days but the break comes in the middle of the week!

So I hopped on the scale- ok not literally, don't want to abuse my little digital buddy- and the news is fabulous...down a total of 33.5lbs! I should be able to hit my big goal by the end of this month with only 6.5 lbs left to go. So, that said I am publicly committing to adding another 10lbs to the big goal. Yeah for me...I only have 6.5lbs until my next little goal!

Okay, check the bounty of Sundays Off yesterday. Not sure the Madelene cookies/cakes were worth the work and time that went into them. If I were to make them again I would definitely boost the lemon zest and PURE (never use imitation) lemon extract, or maybe use pure (see note above) vanilla extract and vanilla bean.

Have a happy, healthy, and safe Monday.

Sunday, July 1, 2012

Super late in the post-sorry

I was on target for the wedding reception food. Not bad, just typical. The broccoli, cauliflower, and carrot mix drowned in butter sauce was the best option- serrated spoon, so I stood and let them drain. Oh, I also had a meatball and half the bag of carrots I brought with me.

Good news on the weigh-in front. Now down 33.5lbs. The more I am able to take Chunky pup out in the evenings the better I do. So I will just have to do more of that. I would very much like to be down 35lbs by this time next week, even with an Anniversary dinner in there.

Among the million things I have going right now, the Madeline batter, which has to refrigerate for at least two hours before baking!

Have a happy, healthy, and fun afternoon!

Eggs are frothy, flour and butter waiting!

Saturday, June 30, 2012

I buy way too much food!

I was very careful at the Farmer's Market this morning because I still had stuff from last week!  The peas are still in the fridge and I have a few mixed greens left.  I finished up the tomatoes in the salsa I made for the fish tacos last nigh...which I thought were fabulous, someone else was a little cranky because they are messy.  We won't mention who.

Heller's was out of strawberries by the time I got there, but they did have these fabulous looking bite-sized plums that I scooped up, along with more yellow tomatoes.  And of course I grabbed some of the edible violets from the wonderful lady on the end, whose name I can never remember.  She is the same person I buy my honey and vinegar from.  And she even commented on my weight loss.  With all the people she encounters, I was flattered that I had made enough of an impression that she remembered the way I was and now how I am.  Of course I grabbed some milk-I think Army is hooked on it-from the milk ladies.

Since I still have peas, tomorrow I am preparing some Risotto with fresh Peas.  To go with this wonderful, flavorful delight, I picked up some thick cut pork chops, olives, and Stilton cheese with brandy and apricots...a stuffing waiting to happen.  I forgot, I also have zucchini from last week so that will be the side, sauteed zucchini.  Dessert is wonderful.  I have two Madeline pans that I have NEVER used.  So tomorrow I will- lemon scented Madeline's with some Limoncello gelato sounds like a very refreshing way to end a meal.  Also, Santa Margherita ( Pinot Grigio to go with.  I love their wines.  I paid a steep price today, I know because of where I purchased it, if I had driven to J & J Liquor store in the Commons it would have been about $7 less; lesson learned!

I still have to get through this wedding and reception later today...I have a big bag of baby carrots I am sneaking in along with my Vanilla Orange seltzer and a big sippy cup of ice water.  Hopefully there will be veggies that have not been killed with a sauce or drowned with butter.

The next challenge is my anniversary- July 4th.  I know national holiday, but it does make it easy to remember.  It is also Zeus's birthday, a patriotic pup he is.  Army said something about going to the Lake Front (, which would be wonderful.  I think their chef is a CIA grad...good food just waiting to happen.  We went there for my birthday last year and I cannot say I was disappointed.  It was a great meal.  The link takes you to the homepage of the hotel.  It looks like a typical tourist trap, but the food is great and worth every penny.  Some of the menus are on line.  I am thinking the Calamari Salad sounds great...I wonder if they would do it as an entree?  Hhhhmmmm.

Have a healthy, happy, and safe day.