Monday, March 31, 2014

Back off!

Don’t you wish there was a block that would keep people who you find mildly to majorly irritating from coming near you when you feel “off”? Instead, it’s like there’s a magnet in you that draws those people to you.

This morning I’m exhausted. I didn’t sleep well at all. I am supposed to be at work at 8 on M-W-F but usually come in at 7 so I can get some work done before teachers and students arrive. Today was definitely an 8 am day! But that meant that I messed up Kenny’s schedule for the morning. Then the first couple of people I run into are those mildly irritating types that I can usually deal with quickly and get them out of my way. Nope. I actually got into an argument with one of them. I may have to succumb and drink a Coke to get some caffeine into my body and combat this exhaustion. I really want to just go home. But that’s not an option. Really wishing I had saved some of my days off for now. The only good thing is that next week is Spring Break. I’ll work two of those days but have 3 days off, so I’m looking forward to that. Boy, oh, boy, am I looking forward to that!

Friday, March 28, 2014

Happy day!

What a difference a couple days can make. Or maybe it’s just that God’s working on my attitude. Nothing has changed…still battling weight and the Daniel Plan, still have inventory at work to figure out, still have tons to do with children’s ministry, still behind on all the housework…but today, it’s all good.

I’m reading “Kisses from Katie” again. She is a missionary in Uganda, Africa. She went on a 3-week trip to help out in an orphanage over Christmas Break of her high school senior year and fell in love with the people of Uganda. She took a year between high school and college to work as a kindergarten teacher in a mission in Uganda and ended up adopting 14 children and founding a mission of her own. You can read her blog here: Maybe reading about how hard her life is, not to mention the lives of the Ugandan people, and they are able to find joy gave me the spiritual slap in the face that I needed. I highly recommend reading her blog and even more highly recommend reading the book as it dives more into her emotions and feelings as she made her life choices.

Lorie is doing much better. I heard from her yesterday and she was back to talking in her normal upbeat, hurried way. She’s sore from the retching and from her body being so tense during all that sick time but is definitely on the other side of the mountain. I am so grateful for everyone who covered her in prayer.

Today is a rainy Friday. I’m battling sleepiness. It was a battle getting up because it would have been so nice to just snuggle back into bed. If I’d known it was rainy at that point, I might have! It’s a bit ironic that it’s so rainy out (and supposed to rain through tomorrow) because we’re going to go see the movie “Noah” tonight! I find that amusing.

I also got a big kick out of my husband this morning. First, he’s still taking out the dogs for their morning walk. He looked at me and said, “What do you do when it’s raining?” My answer? “You hope they pee fast!” Not helpful, I know. But still… Anyhow, he also put on his knight in shining armor costume and helped to “slay the dragon.” Not really, but anyhow he knocked the dragon down a couple pegs. He’s such a good man. We’re about to celebrate our 23rd anniversary on Sunday. I am more and more astonished that he’s put up with me so long. I’m a pretty high maintenance kind of gal.

I really am blessed!

Thursday, March 27, 2014

Daniel 27

Okay, so the Bible study is ending up to be a bust because we are all so busy with it being ball season. We'd planned to meet on Sundays after lunch but the church keeps planning things to do and we have to spend SOME time with our families!

Kim, Barbie and I did the first lesson ourselves as Jo and Meg were doing the scavenger hunt. The next lesson we all did together. The next lesson, Kim and Barbie forgot all about it. This next week is when we'll be going to the Fly Over Jerusalem thingy at Fernbank so we won't meet then either. Meg and I sat down (finally) to go over the first lesson that she missed and then the next day we did the lesson 3. I'm thinking I'll just let Kim and Barbie borrow the DVD and check it out for themselves. I don't know.

ANYWHOOOOO, lesson 1 is on Faith, lesson 2 is on Food and lesson 3 is on Fitness. Fitness is my problem child. Yes, I really wanted to dump Johanna out the car door so I could go to town on her Zaxby's fries last night (obviously, the child Daniel Plan's according to a different drummer). Yes, I'm finding it difficult to not snack on my normal snacky foods. Yes, I am busy thinking of what I'm going to eat on April 10 (April 9th is the last day of our 40 day Daniel Plan adventure). However, I'm getting by. Fitness? Not so much.

I think what really gets me is that a couple years ago I'd "got" it. I don't feel like I ever craved exercise or ever really wanted to do it, but I'd gotten in the habit and gotten over the part where the excuses on why not to do it made more of an impression. So as soon as the DVD was over, I put on my walking shoes and popped in my gal, Leslie Sansone and did one mile with Walking Away the Pounds. Then I was reminded just how out of shape I was. Two years ago, I could do all 5 miles on the DVD. Now, I can barely get to a mile. BUT, it's a mile I wouldn't have done otherwise! I didn't exercise yesterday as I'd planned because I was able to talk myself out of it. But I'm not letting that set me back and I'm planning on doing the mile as soon as I get home.

Foodwise, nothing new to see. Still mostly doing smoothies or ezekial bread with almond butter or peanut butter for breakfast, sandwich or leftovers for lunch. I had a salad for dinner last night. The night before I made the Walnut Pesto Chicken (yum!) and the night before that I made spaghetti using whole wheat pasta and the sauce with turkey meat and tomato paste/olive oil/garlic/spaghetti water. Tonight I'm making a version of one of my co-worker's recipes. It's a wild rice soup. It is COLD in Georgia (nice winter we're having this spring, I tell ya!). I didn't have an onion and didn't have the 10 cups of chicken broth it called for, because apparently I can't read a recipe well when I make out my grocery list. I need to stop by the grocery for some bananas for our smoothies, the ezekial bread that isn't disgusting (I prefer the one in the blue wrapper and accidentally bought the original in the orange wrapper...yuck), and the ingredients for Jo's (well, Pampered Chef's) salsa so she can make some fresh salsa for me.

I finally saw some downward movement in the scale again. Not sure how long it will last but I'm going to take it. I started this adventure at 185.2 lbs and today my scale read 177.2 lbs so that's 8 lbs. Course I've been down this road before so I'm not holding my breath. It would be sweet to lose 10-15 lbs total while doing this. I know I can't go back to eating the way I was and I know I need to get on the exercise train before this is over. I've got less than 2 wks to get myself motivated. Lord? I need you! I can't do this one on my own!

Phone calls

There are phone calls from your kids that you pray you never have to receive: “Mom, I’ve been kidnapped.” “Mom, I’ve flunked out.” “Mom, I’m eloping.” “Mom, I’m pregnant (got a girl pregnant).” This was not one of those calls. But it wasn’t fun either.

Yesterday I was helping a staff member with a technology issue when my phone rang. From the ringtone, I knew it was Lorie but I just couldn’t take the call at that time. When I got things square with the staff member, I went to find a place where my phone had enough bars, and listened to the voicemail she left. It’s never easy to hear your children crying. It’s harder when they are hundreds of miles away from you and you can’t get to them to help make it better. Lorie was sick. She had been “both sides” sick all night long and needed help. I called her back and told her she needed to somehow, someway get to the clinic. Her roommate told her that she would help her, so off they went. Either she had food poisoning or some kind of stomach bug…they weren’t sure. But the sent her back to the dorm with a prescription. Now, I understand that they can’t supply everything, but, seriously, the child is a freshman who aren’t allowed to have cars so they sent someone who is draining from both ends off with no medication to help and with a prescription that she’ll have to use public transportation to get to a place that will fill it? Really? REALLY?!

Anyhow, long story shorter, the sweet roommate went to CVS to get the meds but couldn’t get away to do it until nearly 5pm. CVS took 2 hrs to fill the script so even though Lorie went to the clinic around 12:30, it was nearly 7pm before she got anything to help her.

She called me last night and sounded 1000x better and so much more like herself. She got some sleep while waiting for her roommate and had been trying to study for an exam today that is worth a third of her grade. Poor baby had to clean up all the mess from throwing up in the trashcan in her room all night. She said that she promised her roommate to make the room “not smell like death.”

So hard to be a mom at times like these. There’s no way to fix it, help out, or do anything but listen to your offspring hurting. I did a lot of praying yesterday. Thank you, Lord, for answered prayers. I know You love Lorie infinitely more than I do.

Tuesday, March 25, 2014

Fair warning: a whole lot of nothing in this post!

Well, that stunk. Yep. It did. For my Introduction to Biblical Counseling class I had to do a personal paper of no less than three pages about an area (or areas) in my life where I would like the Lord’s healing. I gotta say I was a bit resentful of this assignment. I’ve met this woman once or twice in my life (it’s an online class) and I’m about to spill my guts over something in my life? And get graded on it? Sheesh!

My wrinkly hand. My right-hand is
worse but I had a hard enough time
taking a picture one-handed of
my left hand!
Little bit of ADD happening around here, just to give you fair warning, so major topic change for no reason coming in 3-2-1. I’ve been noticing lately how old my hands look. I’ve got freckles/age spots and the worst wrinkles and parchment paper skin ever. Honestly it’s like my skin stretched out a bit too much and I’m wearing skin gloves (which totally makes me think of the first “Men in Black” movie where the farmer’s wife is talking to Agents K & J about her husband after the alien cockroach takes him over. “It’s like he was wearing a suit. An Edgar suit.”) Anyhow, I don’t want old looking hands. So what do you do about it? I seriously have no idea. I’ve been drinking my water like a good girl and trying to moisturize (even though it leaves weird oily marks on the keys of my laptop…blech). Maybe I ought to Google it. Course then I'd come across some nutritional supplement that guarantees to help you lose weight, cure any and all diseases, is "completely natural" make your nostrils the same size, and…not make your hands look old. (Another topic switch about to happen. Hold on to your seatbelts.)

Have you ever noticed that there are a lot (a LOT) of products that are sold through MLMs that swear that they cure pretty much everything? And they cost a lot of money. And they are "completely  all-natural" (um, so's the grass outside my door; ain't gonna eat it just cuz it's "natural"). And they aren’t backed by normal medical doctors. Because according to them medical doctors lie. But all the studies that THEIR doctors have done to prove the effectiveness have to be done by…scientists and medical people.
My personal opinion is that most of the reason that stuff works is psycho-somatic (or whatever the word is that means that you believe in it enough to make it work). Add in that, of course, when things don’t work that they always tell you to clean up what you eat and drink the recommended amount of water to really see the benefits and you have to wonder. Wouldn’t you save a lot of time, energy, and money if you just eat right, drink water, exercise and believe in THAT?! I got put on a forum for one of these products and someone asked how they took the product. One pill with breakfast, the special drink 30 minutes later, a different pill with lunch, another something 30 minutes later, more pills at bedtime…I was exhausted just reading and wondering how in the world anyone with any common sense couldn’t take a step back and look at that and see that something wasn’t right. And the conspiracy theories about the medical establishment that gets bandied about. Yes, I know that there are a lot of doctors that are in pharmaceutical companies’ back pockets but I am certainly not going to trust some dingaling lady that did some research on Google on things that backed up her own theories vs. the years and years that my doctor (who also has spent years and years with me and knows my medical history backward and forward) has in schooling. Reminds me of a conversation I had with a lady about 20 years ago. She had studied to be a birth coach for one of those no doctors/no drugs birth programs. She was trying to talk me into letting her be my birth coach instead of using my ob/gyn. And you know what she said to convince me? “We had to take a 6-week course and write a paper and everything! Those doctors just want to drug you up to control your labor so they can get on to the next patient.” Wow. She had to study for 6 weeks and write a paper! Woo-wee. Why yes, I certainly am going to trust YOU to deliver my precious baby and not my doctor of five years who already delivered my first child because you had to "write a paper and everything!"
Morons. The world is full of them. And, yes, Chief Moron is typing this out. I see the hypocrisy of it. And, yes, I’m laughing at myself. And, no, it’s not going to stop me from posting this nonsensical blathering, this not one iota of saneness happening post to my blog. Cuz I’m a rebel, I tell you. Living on the edge.

Oh, and I really want to go see KISS and Def Leppard in concert this summer.

That is all.

Monday, March 24, 2014

Daniel 24

First of all, don't freak out. I know in my other Daniel Plan posts I've listed what I've ate. However, it's been 11 days since my last DP post and I wouldn't have the foggiest on what I ate for the last week and a half.

We're getting to the part where this has all gotten a bit old. I've learned some good lessons about the junk I chose to "nourish" my body with in the past and, hopefully,  have established some better habits. But I'm ready to eat like a normal person again. And, I gotta say it, NO, my tastebuds did NOT change in a week, two weeks or even three weeks. I don't crave sweets or chips or fries or fatty food. But if I want to have a burger and fries, then, doggone it, I want to have a burger and fries and not sit with a salad in front of me acting like it's the best thing I've had in my life.

Yes, since you've asked, I'm a little bitter about this. I counted on my body kicking in and my tastebuds doing their job. I counted on my body reacting to the healthy food I'm eating by shedding the extra fat and leaving me feeling healthy and happy. But if I'm going to continue to not sleep, not lose weight and feel like a slug? Then give me some Zaxby's French fries, STAT!

I've still only lost 5 or so pounds. I started at 185.4 ( I may have been 185.6 or even 185.2) and I jump around from 180 to 178.4. So depressing. Oh, and I had an episode with some pressure in my heart area that we kinda figured was either gas or stress. So I'm walking around burping for all I'm worth and trying to figure out how to de-stress my life a bit. Can't quit the jobs, can't stop being a mom, can't get Dayannah to get a clue, can't stop being a wife, can't stop people from wanting me to do stuff... I wanted to join back up at Body Tech, but who has the time? If I can't find the time to take a walk in the neighborhood, then how am I going to find time to go to the gym? Really! REALLY!!

I guess the best thing to do is to work on my inner dialogue because, frankly, looking back at what I just wrote is not only depressing but horribly whiney, too. I also need to make friends with my calendar a bit more. I know if I can stop procrastinating and use my calendar to better plan my time and to help me keep track of stuff, that I'll not be such a whack-job!

Hopefully, better things are coming if I can just get myself together and stop trying to "wing it."

Book review: A Stillness of Chimes

Meg Moseley’s “A Stillness of Chimes” is an easy read and an interesting story. The cover says that it is “A Novel” which put me off a bit as most novels leave me wanting for an actual plot. However,“A Stillness of Chimes” is a mystery with a bit of romance. Also for a Christian novel it wasn’t heavy on the power of God fixes all dynamic that a lot of Christian books tend to fall into. As a pastor’s wife, I definitely believe in the power of God, however, I don’t get into the sappy everything-will-always-work-out premise.

The basic premise of the story is that Laura Gantt comes home to Prospect, Georgia, small town in north Georgia, following the death of her mother. While there, she finds that people have seen her father. Except that her father supposedly drowned twelve years before.

While the book was enjoyable and a quick read, I finished the book with questions. Subplots surrounding her best friend, Chloe, and the relationship between Laura and her mother didn’t seem to be fleshed out.

This won’t be a book that stays on my bookshelf to read again and again, but it is a book I would recommend to a friend who wants a light, easy, enjoyable read.

I received this book for free from WaterBrookMultnomah Publishing Group for this review through their Blogging for Books program.

Thursday, March 13, 2014

Daniel Plan...Day 13

So glad that we started on the 1st. It makes it MUCH easier to remember what day I'm on!

It's one of those "blah" days, which followed a "blah-er" day. My get up and go is so far away, I'm not sure how it will ever come back.

As for Daniel Plan, we're off the detox part (no gluten, no caffeine, no sugars, no dairy). I'm still trying to be careful and only eat gluten in one meal and not going overboard on the dairy. Now, while I'm enjoying (surprisingly) trying new things, I gotta say that everything takes such a long time! Meal planning, grocery shopping, cooking, clean up...they all require a heck of a lot more work than I usually put in and that just does not gel with my lifestyle. Anyhow, time to look back at the meals I've had:

Day 10's dinner was beef chunks in the balsamic vinaigrette we like to make now. Didn't turn out so good. I don't think I picked the right kind of beef as it was super tough. Guess I need to do some research on that. We also sliced the zucchini into coins instead of spears...and that didn't go over too good. I really think my oven is whackadoodle. I need to get that looked at now that we are cooking more.

Day 11 I made the regular blueberry/banana/flax smoothie for breakfast, had celery with peanut butter/apple/and something else but I can't remember for lunch. I grocery shopped after school and got my beloved wheat bread (hooray). Jo had her first home lacrosse game so after putting groceries up, I headed to the high school and for a treat since 1) it was her first home lacrosse game and 2) it got over at 7 and there was no time between getting home and leaving to make dinner, we went to Wendy's. I got my favorite apple, chicken, pecan salad. Meg did, too, but she didn't like it. Poor baby. She was so looking forward to getting off the detox. Jo went totally rogue and ate off Plan and relished it.

Day 12, again my regular smoothie for breakfast. For lunch I mixed Greek yogurt with tuna and stuffed it and romaine lettuce in a small oat/flax/wheat pita pocket. I had carrots and brought an apple which I didn't eat. Dinner was chicken that I'd put in the crockpot with salsa and left on low all day. I made the gluten-free corn tortilla crisps from the book (not bad) and had some corn with it. I put a dollop of Greek yogurt on it in place of my normal sour cream. We failed in that we didn't include a non-starchy vegetable. :(

Today I finally made Dr. Hyman's whole food smoothie, with one exception...I didn't have pumpkin seeds. It's a combo of blueberries, banana, a little almond milk and some water with chia seeds, hemp seeds, walnuts, brazil nuts, almond butter and pumpkin seeds. It blended up okay but the recipe said that it served 3. It didn't make much more than the amount I normally drink for my breakfast smoothie. I should have listened. That drink is dense. It's also...earthy. The blueberries and banana don't do much to add any flavor, that's for sure. It's also, well, chewy. BUT, I drank about a third of the cup and couldn't handle anymore...I was full and satisfied. It's 9:30 and I'm still okay and not doing what I usually do, looking at the clock to see how long it will be until lunch! I'll make this again...but this time only take a third so I don't waste it. Lunch is natural peanut butter (9 g protein in 2 tbs of sugarless peanut butter) on one slice of whole wheat bread, carrots and a banana. Dinner tonight is supposed to be spaghtetti squash, turkey meatballs and the sauce I make from tomato paste that's so nummy, steamed fresh green beans and sliced apples. Tomorrow night we are making turkey burgers and Paula Deen's healthier macaroni and cheese from the recipe she put together for Dr. Oz. So excited about "real" comfort food!

Oh, and weight-wise, on day 11, it went down .2 lbs, day 12 stayed the same and this morning I was down .8 lbs. I also told my Bible study buddies that I was going to try to be more active this week and wanted them to hold me accountable. Monday I did 6 EMS laps (450 steps each) and a mile in the neighborhood, Tuesday nothing, yesterday I only got in 2 EMS laps but did a mile in the neighborhood in the blustering wind (seriously, I was being bounced around out there). I'm planning to get in a mile when I get home today, too. Go me! I'm definitely exceeding what I did last week...which was NOTHING!!!

Monday, March 10, 2014

Daniel Plan...Day 10

It’s day 10 of the Daniel Plan and I’m having a hard time. For 8 straight days the scale went down…sometimes no more than .2 lbs but .2 lbs down is still .2 lbs not on my body, right? Well, yesterday and today my weight is back up. I know I should base my self-worth on my weight and in my head, I’m mentally smacking myself for even giving into this feeling, but…I’m trying to be honest with myself and I honestly feel like a failure.

So, trying to be honest AND logical about the whole deal, I know I didn’t drink enough water this weekend and I know that yesterday’s meal at Don Tellos was a total bust. But to know that I would eat nasty, awful, bad/bad/bad/bad/bad stuff all the time and my weight would s-l-o-w-l-y creep up and then I have two days where I don’t drink water and have ONE bad meal and I pork on almost 2 pounds? The bad angel is screaming at me “give up.” I’m not going to because my good angel also has a chorus with the names of Kim and Barbie telling me to hang in there. All the same…

So during yesterday’s Bible study, we took on the Essential of Food. So timely because we were all feeling pretty badly about lunch. I also need to keep my eye on the Fitness Essential because I’m not doing well with that at all. And that frustrates me to no end. Yesterday, my brother-in-law posted a picture of my sisters and I from two summers ago on Facebook. That’s when I’d lost almost 30 lbs and was walking 2-3 miles a day and loving (well, putting up with) exercise. You would think it would spur me on to trying to be better, but it doesn’t. I’m sitting here trying not to cry because I’m so frustrated with myself.

So what’s the best thing to do when you are feeling down? Help someone else and find something to make you smile. I just came back from helping someone and that did nothing for me. (I’m such a putz.)  Laughter next: I’m trying to remember the Bible study yesterday and Kim’s little sweetie grunting out her BM. Jo was sitting next to her and suddenly blurted out, “It that smell all Gloria?!” So much for teaching my child manners and the fine art of subtlety. The room dissolved into laughter, we paused the Bible study DVD, Kim took the baby to change her and Jo went to find some Lysol. As Meg, Barbie and I are sitting around giggling about what took place, the next thing you know, Kim’s in the doorway. I don’t even listen to what she’s saying because she’s got Gloria with her feet in one hand and raised up and her other hand holding the baby up. We can see that she’s oozed out one of the legholes. Then she turns and walks in the other room. I’m dying laughing and remember other instances of baby blow-outs I’ve experienced when Barbie says, “I think she needs to some help.” (which is what Kim had said, but I was too busy laughing to process.) Off we go to the rescue. That child had it all over. We laughed until we cried. I still dissolve into giggles when I think about Kim coming to the door with Gloria hanging upside down (and Gloria with the biggest grin on her face).

And that reminds me why I’m doing this thing with my girls and with my friends. Because they can make me laugh and bring me out of the doldrums even when they aren’t around!

And, to top it all off, Kenny’s taking the dogs out for their morning walk for another week for me!!! Score!

So now that I’m back to my happier self, let me report in on Day 7’s dinner and Day 8 & Day 9 (if I can remember that far!)

Day 7’s Chicken Walnut Pesto dinner was fabulous! I mean, really nummy. I will make that again in a heartbeat. We had brown rice and roasted yellow squash for the sides.

Day 8 I made a blueberry/banana/flax seed smoothie for breakfast and had leftover Chicken Walnut Pesto and sides for lunch. For dinner we went to Applebees and I ordered the grilled Oriental Salad without the crunchy noodles. I asked for the oriental vinaigrette on the side and good thing because that thing wasn’t clear…it was opague and when I tasted it, lots of sugar there! I enjoyed the salad anyhow.

Day 9 I made another blueberry/banana smoothie (didn’t do the flax seed cuz I didn’t want to burp my way through church). Here’s where it fell apart. We went to Don Tellos for lunch and we convinced ourselves that the corn tortilla chips and salsa were okay to eat. And then I bulldozed my way through a couple baskets of it. I ordered Nachos Grande without the cheese or sour cream. Then we went to Bible study and we all agreed that the chips were probably not Daniel Plan okay. We were all feeling sluggish and guilty (except, perhaps, Johanna. I think she was okay with the slip.) So…oops! Anyhow, I was so full that I didn’t eat any dinner except munch on some nuts.

Day 10 started out with no ripe bananas so I made a tropical smoothie with some frozen pineapple, strawberry, mango fruit, coconut milk and protein powder. It was okay. It was kind of flavorless, to tell the truth. I think it suffered for not having the banana. Anyhow, since I need to stock up on groceries but waited since TODAY’S THE LAST DAY OF THE DETOX!!!, I have a weird lunch. I have leftover yellow squash and rice, some blackberries, and celery with natural peanut butter (9 g of protein in 2 tbs, no sugar). Tonight I’m going to marinate beef chunks in the balsamic vinaigrette and sauté them, and more brown rice and roast more zucchini. Gotta do it quick when I get home because I have a meeting at 5:30 and one following it at 6:30. Gack! Hoping to have enough leftovers for Meg, Jo and I for Tuesday lunch!!

Also, I’m down 5 lbs and my waist dropped a half inch over the past 10 days.

Friday, March 7, 2014

Daniel Plan...Day 7

Still the hardest thing for me with this is the lunches. I keep thinking I’m making enough to feed everyone and have leftovers for lunch, but the gentlemen in my life are watching their portion control, so there’s usually nothing left. You can only have romaine and turkey wraps so many times. So far, I’ve had them once. And that was enough.

Wait, I think actually the hardest part is having to shop all the time. I feel like all I do is plan to go to the store. I have to be better at menu planning, I’m thinking.

So the last time I blogged about DP (oooo…makes me miss my Dr. Pepper’s), it was Day 5 and I had no idea what to make for dinner. I fell back on my failsafe and made broiled chicken with brown rice and green beans.

Nummy, non-roasted,
non-salted trail mix.
But the cranberries
have sugar. :(
Yesterday, I made a banana, blueberry, and flax seed smoothie for breakfast. I found this awesome, super, fantastic trail mix that I thought was going to work out for snacking at work between meals.
But I was wrong. It is lovely, but I didn’t follow my own rules and read the ingredients. There’s cane sugar with the cranberries. I can eat it moderately once I’m off the detox part, but not now. So sad.

Any ways, lunch was natural peanut butter with carrot sticks and an apple. Kind went skimpy on that one. Dinner was nummy. It was rainy, cold, and windy yesterday afternoon. Nothing hits the spot when it’s rainy, cold, and windy like beef stew. The recipe from the DP book is for the crockpot so I just tweaked it for the stove. They call for red-skinned or purple potatoes. I found a bag of “celebration potatoes” that had red-skinned, white-skinned and purple potatoes. Those purple potatoes are purple all the way through. But when they are stewed, they lose the pretty purple and just kinda look rotten so I had to be sure to give a disclaimer as the family was scooping their portions.

Jo is enjoying the air-popped popcorn. Think she’d enjoy it more with a bit of butter. J Last night she asked me if I’d cheated on the Detox yet and, since I found out about the cane sugar TODAY, I said that I hadn’t and she changed the subject. Now that I know about the cane sugar, I’m a cheater. And so sad.

This morning I weighed myself and I am .2 lbs from being down 6 lbs so far. “.2 lbs” you say? Yep, I’ve got a scale that measure in .2 lbs increments so I take or leave them as the case may be. Big Kenny’s already dropped 5 lbs and he’s not even doing the Detox, he’s just trying to make better food choices.

Today’s breakfast was the Quinoa Breakfast Bake from the DP book's recipes. I had such high hopes because after making the quinoa, you add a couple eggs and some cinnamon and get to put some nut butter (I chose almond butter) on top. It wasn't very tasty. I thought being able to chew on something after all the mornings of glugging smoothies was going to make a big difference, but it didn't. The best part of the deal was the almond butter! Lunch is leftover chicken breast, spinach salad, balsamic dressing, and an apple. Tonight I’m making the “Chicken Walnut Pesto” from the DP book. I’m wracking my brain to find a different word than “pesto” cuz there ain’t no way my man is eating “pesto.” That’s a fact!

Still not doing so hot on the exercise front. I’ve only taken one lap here at school today. I’ve got to get myself together and get my rear in gear!! I’ve done it before, I need to do it again!

Thursday, March 6, 2014

Step aside, MacGyver!

I am so totally MacGyver right now! Okay, so, not really. MacGyver was an “action-adventure hero” and, well, I’m not. Plus, I got my solution from YouTube…but I had to put the research time into it!

So here’s the story, I know you are sitting on the edge of your seat: at the elementary school I work at one of the special education computers (bought specifically for them) was having an audio issue. One of the kids had broken off the tip of the audio jack inside the headphone port. Since the computer thought that something was plugged into that port, the back headphone/speaker port wouldn’t allow audio to work either. So I removed the machine and brought it to my office to work on it. I didn’t know what could be done because the audio ports are self-contained and I truly didn’t want to have mess with replacing the whole front.

So me and Google (to quote Crocodile Dundee, “we be mates”) got together and I saw a video on YouTube that shared using either a Q-tip or a toothpick with some Superglue. I tried the toothpick method but since the part that was “presenting” was rounded, that didn’t do any good. Back to search on YouTube. I ran across one video that proved that the pen is mightier than the sword!

In this YouTube video, he suggested opening up a Bic pen and snipping off the end (the part without the ink).  First, you make sure that the tubing fits over the jack piece (and you might get lucky and get the thing stuck inside without the next part.) Then you use a toothpick to swab Superglue on the inside of one end of the tubing. Next, you put the tubing in the port and pressed down until you feel it snap over the jack piece. Let the glue set up for about 20 minutes. Then pull it out. Ta da!

County Office is super proud of me. Me? Well, you already know that I’m feeling pretty MacGyver-ish. I even looked up the MacGyver theme music and played it (mostly because I realized that I didn’t know it and what I was singing to myself was the A-Team theme music) while I dance around my office. Which bring me to another couple points…truly, TRULY glad there are no cameras in classrooms (my office is a converted classroom) because I would have majorly embarrassed myself with my big girl booty dance and major pats on the back for managing to use Superglue WITHOUT gluing myself to anything! Woo-hoo!

Wednesday, March 5, 2014

Daniel Plan...Day 5

Last night I went to my daughters’ high school band concerts. As with every other staged performance I’ve ever gone to within the school system, again I was floored by the people that talk the entire way through the concert. I felt like asking them if I should talk to the band director and get them to not play so loudly so as to not interrupt their conversation! I sincerely don’t understand why some people even come to a performance if they aren’t going to be a good audience member. It just really irks. But at least I had a full belly. Otherwise I may have had to say something.

Monday night Jo found a recipe for a dressing that she liked (the one from the Daniel Plan book is too lemony for her and Meg). I used some of it on my salad yesterday and the whole time I ate I kept thinking that it would be GREAT on some chicken. And I was right. On my way home I stopped by Publix to get some stuff I’d forgotten (3rd grocery trip this week, Kenny’s gonna FREAK!) and picked up some chicken cutlets. Meg made up some more of the dressing and sautéed the chicken. We steamed some asparagus and made some brown rice for the sides. Little Kenny gave it two thumbs up and Big Kenny finished it off so I’m guessing we can make this again! Unfortunately with it being so good, that meant that there was none for Jo, Meg and/or I to bring for lunch. Sad face.

This morning I had another strawberry/banana smoothie, but this time with no mishaps when I made it. I made sure the bottom of the blender jar was on nice and tight. I added some flax seed thinking to add some protein and some bulk and maybe I wouldn’t be too hungry by 9 am. I was wrong. I was still hungry and now had flax seeds stuck in my teeth. The DP allows for some snacks so I need to bring some almonds or carrots/celery with me to munch on between meals.

Lunch was leftover quinoa, raw spinach and some of the lemony dressing. I’m still hungry. Someone brought in orange creamsicle-scented soap for the ladies’ room so I’m walking around with my hands pressed to my nose. That’s not creepy at ALL!

I didn’t get much exercise except for walking around school yesterday. I purposefully didn’t “group” my errands or tasks to be close together and forced myself to go to a room and then go back to my office to update Helpdesk. Not very efficient, but it made me move so much more! I’ve only taken one EMS loop today. I did intend on doing one loop per hour but that hasn’t happened yet.

What we’ll eat tonight, I don’t know because I haven’t planned it yet. Guess I need to get on that. It’s a church night so I need to find something quick-cooking.

In the meantime, Kenny’s been taking the dogs out on their early morning run for me all week. It has been so nice. Next week I’m going to have to get up 20 minutes earlier just to get everything done plus take care of the dogs. And we lose an hour this weekend! Fabulous!

Tuesday, March 4, 2014

Daniel 4

Yummo...Meg made turkey burgers (not the ones from the recipe from the back of the DP book, just ground turkey pattied up and spiced up) last night. I was in heaven. The girls are taking the leftovers for lunch today. Course, now I have to come up with something equally fantastic for tonight that I can make quickly because the girls have their pre-LGPE concert at 7pm.

Today didn't start out so great. This week Big Kenny is taking out the dogs for me every morning, which has totally rocked my world! Seriously! It gives me about 20 extra minutes. Next week I guess I have to start waking up earlier. Blech! Anyhow, back to this morning. I woke up about 3 minutes before my alarm only to notice that I'd forgotten to my alarm on last night! Which is weird because I could have sworn I checked. Last night was weird, too, I woke up about 5 times last night...wish I knew why. Crap! I've gotten off track AGAIN. Back to TODAY! So I got up and showered/shaved/shined (except I didn't's winter!) and then went to the kitchen to pack my lunch (I really need to start doing that at night) and get my breakfast smoothie started.

I don't know how I lost time. I really don't. I packed my lunch and filled my water bottle and when I checked the time it was already 6:15. I totally lost 10 minutes someway. So I start moving a little faster. Today I wanted to make a smoothie with strawberries and bananas. I got the blender top (what do you call that? The bowl?) out of the dishwasher and plopped it in the base. I noticed it didn't sit quite properly...should really have taken a little time to explore that...but I went ahead and measured out the almond milk and added a scoop of protein powder. Then I went to the fridge to put the milk back and get the fruit out of the freezer. When I got back to the blender, it looked...well, not as full as I thought it should be. The recipe called for 10-12 oz of almond milk. Yesterday I made my breakfast smoothie with 12 oz and it was a bit too much so I used 10 oz today. I remember thinking to myself (embarrassing moment here), "wow, what a difference 2 oz makes." Luckily I decided to check things out before I added the fruit. Looking closer, I noticed that there was a bit of milk overflow coming from where the top part of the blender (gotta figure out what that part is called!) meets the base. It hit me that the reason the thing felt loose may be because the bottom where the blade is might be loose. My friend had this same thing happen to her. So I started giggling at the silliness of following in my friend's footsteps. Then I removed the top of the blender which had blocked my view of this:
Yep, suddenly not so funny anymore. Okay, in reality,  I did laugh. What can I say? I'm a bit of a moron. Anyhow I cleaned it up, tightened the bottom of blender jar (looked it up...also known as the pitcher or the container!) and set back to work. The smoothie was really nummy but kind of thick and I got an icy headache from trying to drink it too fast.

In other news, I only got one EMS loop done yesterday but did walk a lot more than I usually do in my job. Today it's cold out (37 degrees is cold to me) so I'm not sure how much walking I'll do. I'm a bit of a weinie with colder temperatures. However, if I'm being honest, and I should, I'm in an office by myself so I really could do some exercises in here as long as I don't jump around too much. Who am I kidding?! That ain't gonna happen!

Anyhow, I was excited to see that I've somehow dropped 4 pounds since Saturday. That's 4 pound in 4 days. Probably from the fact that since I'm eating so many more veggies and fruits than I normally do, that my elimination system is working better. It may be water weight that I'm losing, but since I've met my water goal every day, I'm not sure that's it. Keeping my fingers crossed that 1) it's not a fluke and 2) it keeps dropping!

I'm a 10th of the way done! And almost halfway through the Detox part. We are all looking forward to getting grains back!!!

Monday, March 3, 2014

Daniel 3

I’m hungry. I think a protein smoothie in the morning just isn’t going to cut it. Now, it’s not like I ate more when I wasn’t on the Daniel Plan, most mornings I had a protein bar or some peanut butter crackers. Maybe it’s the chewing I miss. I think I’m going to try to Quinoa Bars from the recipes in the back of the book and see it that works better.

So, for those that are not familiar with the Daniel Plan, it’s a 40-day plan that Rick Warren, pastor of Saddleback Church, came up with when he realized that he was a part of the growing issue with weight in America. ( Info about the Daniel Plan )He asked several doctors to partner up with him to create a healthy plan. It’s not just food and fitness that the plan focusses on, there are actually Five Essentials: Faith, Food, Fitness, Focus, and Friends. When they started the plan in 2010, they found that more people were successful who came together in a group and did the plan together. I know accountability helps…I lost 30 pounds a couple years ago simply because I had to weigh in and be accountable to a group of people doing a Biggest Loser contest at the school I worked at then.

My group consists of two of my daughters and two of my friends. We started eating “the Daniel Plan way” on Saturday and did the first week’s Bible Study yesterday. The eating is not fun. For the first 10 days, you are on a “Detox Diet” which means no caffeine, no gluten, no sugars and no dairy. After the 10 days are over you can choose to add gluten back in forms of whole wheat, sugars back but not refined sugars and dairy as in certain cheeses. They suggest adding one type of thing back at a time and waiting 3-4 days to see if you have a reaction.

Day 1 I had a Blueberry, Spinach, and Flax smoothie for breakfast. It was…interesting. The burps were interesting-er. Lunch was ½ cup quinoa, broccoli and the Antioxidant Dressing from a recipe in the back of the book (olive oil, garlic, lemon, dry mustard and something else…Meg made it). I enjoyed it. Meg wasn’t thrilled with the lemony taste. Dinner we ate out at O’Charley’s so Meg, my friends and I had their chicken salads without the candied pecans or cheese and with the balsamic vinaigrette. And we pouted. It wasn’t bad. And I’ve ate that salad before…but there’s something about HAVING to order it instead of wanting to order it. I also walked a mile with Meg in the subdivision for the fitness part. I drank all my water.

Day 2 I didn’t have time for breakfast as I was an hour off somehow. Lunch were Turkey wraps with nitrate-free turkey breast slices, romaine lettuce and artichoke hummus that I made, carrots and an apple. Dinner was FABULOUS!!! Meg and I were just raving over the taste…probably because it felt like “normal” food. I baked chicken breasts and roasted zucchini and then had brown rice. I didn’t get any exercise, which is sad. Day 2 and I’m already off track. I drank all my water.

Day 3…so far I’ve had a smoothie for breakfast and packed leftover chicken breast to put on a bed of raw spinach and have some of the dressing Meg made two days ago. I forgot my carrot sticks but did remember to put an apple in. I have to go to the grocery to get food that the Kennys can eat and then go to the church Leadership Meeting tonight so I’m planning on doing as many EMS loops (450 steps around the school I’m at today) as I can. If I can squeeze a mile in the subdivision, I will. Dinner is going to be turkey burgers, green beans and sweet potato “fries” (sweet potatoes cut in rectangular shapes and then baked).