Saturday, August 9, 2008

Brenda Photo Challenge!

The theme of this photo challenge is PLAY and is hosted by Sharon @ Funky Fairy Frolics.
For my first photo, I took a picture of a scrapbook page I did of Kaleb and Jacob playing baseball. The second picture is a compilation of two pictures. On the left is Jacob, on the right is Kaleb. They both play tennis for their high school. Jacob is a lot of fun to watch. He really goes for it and seems to have the best time playing. Kaleb, while a joy to watch, gets too serious about it. He seems to forget that it's only a game sometimes. He's always been a little competitive, though. (Anybody who knows Kaleb knows that's a bit of an understatement!!)
And my third picture is of Maddy Moose. We did ceramics while she was visiting. She had a good time playing with all the different paint colors and such. She and our neighbor's little girl (who is almost the same age) really let loose with their "creative" selves while doing this. They were funny to watch.
I'm actually out of town and probably won't have access to a computer when this posts, but I hope to visit all the other participants as soon as I return. For a complete list of people who will be posting pictures, click here.

Thursday, August 7, 2008

Blogger Meetings and the Florida Trip

Here's some overdue business that I've been wanting to take care of...first of all, I'd like to show the sweet gifts Annie from My Life as Annie gave me when we met almost 2 weeks go in OKC. See the little red purse Christmas ornament? How cute is that? And the BELIEVE cross! I love it. Thank you so much, Annie. These are wonderful gifts (and so nicely packaged, too!!). I'll always think of you when I see them (which will be often as I'm hanging the cross in the living room and I generally put up my Christmas tree no later than November 1st. LOL). Remember I told you that I'd gotten to meet Kat from Just a Beach Kat when I went to Florida? Here's a picture of us together down at Dewey Destin's Seafood.
I've got to tell you guys, Kat is every bit as nice in person as she is on her blog. I can't say enough good things about her! She's beautiful, she's sweet natured, she's kind-hearted, she's funny...I felt like a country rube next to her. lol (I even stepped on her toe when we first met - how's that for giving a good first impression??). After having met both Annie and Kat in person, I'm kind of torn about meeting any other bloggers in real life. Don't get me wrong, it was fun and interesting and I thoroughly enjoyed both of them. But I'm going to have to require just a little bit more imperfection in my blogging buddies from here on out, okay? These two are just such all around good people - it was hard not to feel every single one of my social shortcomings after meeting them. (Note to self: You may want to sign up for that refresher course down at the local Charm School if you intend to keep meeting new people. LOL) Anyway, to Annie and Kat - thank you both for taking the time to meet with me. I certainly appreciate that! Oh, and check out the shell that Kat gave me:
It has The Lord's Prayer printed on it. I adore this. I've put it on the shelf in our living room next to the angel Randey brought me back from Italy years ago.
After my lunch with Kat, I visited mine and Randey's grandson's grave site. It's such a peaceful place. This was my first time going alone, though. I was kind of surprised at how poorly I handled this particular visit. I guess it's just easier when I'm with other people. I cleaned the grass off that was growing over the edges of his marker and straightened up the toys we've all left him over these past 2 and 3/4 years. I wish I'd thought to bring some new flowers for the flower pot his mommy had made him. I left him a picture of his sisters, though. They're wearing their super hero costumes - Maddy was dressed as Bat Girl and Kara was dressed as Spidergirl. I barely made it back out on the road when I had to call Randey for a little moral support. I think I'll be sure to have someone with me the next time I go there. I need someone to talk to during the visit. Otherwise, it's just too sad.
Here's a picture of a car we saw on our way to Florida. Randey thought it was cool so he had me take a couple of pictures. (I almost didn't want to do it. Didn't want to give Nick, Kaleb and/or Jacob any ideas!).

And here's a sign from a pest control company down in Florida. I had forgotten about this company, although I did use them once or twice when we lived there. Their slogan always makes me pause. I can't decide if it's creepy or just funny:
Here's a picture of Maddy Moose with Grandpa in front of Cracker Barrel. They love to play checkers together. I swear, Maddy loves Randey best because he truly is a great grandpa to her. I love watching them together.
Here's me holding Randey's brother's newest granddaughter. Little Brooklynn was born the week we were there. She's such a tiny little thing. Weighed in at 6 pounds 4 ounces. I love little newborns. Holding Brooklynn made me crazy thinking about holding Kara. I've missed so much of Kara's life already.
(Hey, but check out my gray hair in the picture. I'm about halfway there to having all my old colored hair grow out. Woo-hoo!)
And here' a picture of THE finest steak in the world. The peppercorn New York Strip steak from McGuire's Irish Pub. My gosh, how I love these steaks. I had two of them. One in Pensacola with my sister, her husband, my niece, her boyfriend and Randey. And then another one in Destin with Susan (my BFF) and her husbandTerry, and Randey. I did so good with them, too. I only ate about a quarter of each one, which was plenty. No morning-after guilt over failed Weight Watchers moments for me! lol Well...I did partake in 2 Raspberry Wheat beers on both nights, which wasn't too smart. But what can I say. I love McGuire's Raspberry Wheat beer. They were worth the guilt!
And finally, here's a picture of my niece, Megen and her boyfriend, Taron. They were sharing a "Wake" from McGuire's. I'm not sure what it has in it, but suffice it to say, it's potent. They both look like they're totally toasted. Which they were. I'm sure they'll thank me for posting this. LOL
Don't forget, the Brenda Photo Challenge, hosted by Sharon @ Funky Fairy Frolics is August 9th. The theme is PLAY! So get your playing photos up and going! I'll be out of town again, but I hope to come check out everyone's pictures Monday, when I return!

Wednesday, August 6, 2008

Finding a Weigh Out of Fat! Volume I

I've been trying to figure out where to start this post...should I begin with how I got fat, why I got fat or when, why and/or how I decided to get UN-fat? I've decided that the UN-fat part of the story is probably the best part to go into. After all, I can condense the "getting fat" into a few short sentences: I got fat because I ate a lot and didn't exercise. I ate a lot and didn't exercise because I got too caught up in the minutia of life and forgot to take the time to actually live it. As for when I got fat...that started the day I married Randey and started cooking good ol' Southern food for him (fried chicken, fried steak, fried potatoes, fried this and fried that. Not to mention the breads...rolls, biscuits, toast, etc., etc., etc.). Yep. Frying everything and eating bread can take you from a size 5 to a size 18 long before you can even get all your kids grown! Hence my issue with weight. As I mentioned before, I finally had to face the fact that I was fat. Just downright FAT. Not fluffy, not chubby, not plump. Just FAT. Then I had to make a decision. I'd been unhappy about my weight for a long, long time, but not enough to actually do something about it. I guess I thought that maybe all the tricks I'd used way back in the day, when dropping 5 pounds was just a matter of eating right for a day or two, would work if I tried them often enough. However...I eventually had to face the fact that once your body has given birth 4 times over and your muscle mass has faded into mush and gravity has taken its toll - not to mention the ravages of hormones on a no-longer-youthful body - little tricks don't and won't work like they used to. So I was left with this: either accept that I was going to be a fat granny for the rest of my life and be satisfied with that self-image, or I'd have to commit to something serious and give weight loss one more big effort. I chose to commit. And boy was it hard! I did a little research and decided that Weight Watchers was the way for me to go. (Having heard from Joan that it was a great program helped, too!) They have a good success rate and the cost is fairly reasonable (especially compared to other methods out there!). I got online and "found" a meeting in my area that fit with my schedule. Then I went to that meeting. That was probably the hardest part of this journey. The first real step. It was like what I imagine an AA type meeting for fat people to be like: "Hello, I'm fat and I want to change. Can you help me?". It all seemed a little hokey to me, but what the heck? I wanted to be able to tell myself that I had "tried everything" before I resigned myself to permanent residence in Fatland. Still, I honestly didn't think Weight Watchers would work for me, but I also didn't think I could look at myself in the mirror if I didn't at least try it. So I told myself I'd give it 4 months. Four full months. If my weight hadn't changed at the end of that time, I'd pat myself on the back for giving it a try and I'd drown my sorrows in a tub of Cold Stone Creamery yumminess. And I'd embrace the fat granny that was ME. But lo' and started working. I followed the plan, I didn't cheat on anything, I even started moving a little more (taking walks in the evenings, etc.) and the pounds starting coming off. Not too fast, mind you, but that's the way it's supposed to work. You might lose a little more in the first 2 weeks, but the goal is to lose only around 1 to 2 pounds a week. As of today, 12 weeks after I started the program, I have lost a total of 29.4 pounds. (Like I said, I lost a little more per week the first two weeks.) My goal is to lose another 25. Weight Watchers goal for me is to weigh 120, if you can believe that. Personally, I'm not aiming quite that low. No point getting crazy with this weight loss thing, eh? I mean geez, I haven't weighed 120 since 1978 and I'm afraid that if I weighed that now, I'd look like an anorexic old hag with a ginormous head. lol I'll be content if I can accomplish the goal I have set for myself. Now I'm not advocating that everyone out there join Weight Watchers. They don't pay me to recruit for them you know. LOL But it's a program that is working for me. Even the hokey meetings seem to do me good. I can surround myself with people who understand my struggles and vice versa. We support each other for that little 30 to 45 minutes a week and it's wonderful. It helps.

The moral of the story here? I guess I'm trying to say that you shouldn't settle for being fat if being fat is not what you want to be. Understand that there are no easy fixes out there, though. Regardless of what weight loss program you chose, you'll have to retrain yourself to think differently about food. It's not just about following a program, it's about making lifestyle changes. It's about making a decision to lose weight and then making a commitment to get the job done. I'd like this first post to be about the best tips out there to help each other to lose weight. My tip for you? Learn that food is not your friend. Food is not your friend, your pal, your comfort, your entertainment and/or your reward! Food is fuel for your body. Period. That doesn't mean you can't enjoy eating. It just means you need to understand the roll in your life that food should have and not give it an emotional importance it doesn't deserve. Start telling yourself (over and over and over again) that food is fuel, not love, and you'll start to think of it in a whole new light, I promise. Now what tips do you guys have? What has helped you the most? What's your biggest downfall that you think you need help with? How do you survive the munchies? What snacks work best to satisfy you without adding pounds? I'll compile all the tips I receive this week into next Wednesday's post so give us your best ones here, okay? Can't wait to hear what you have to say!!
P.S. Tomorrow I'll be posting about our Florida trip!

Tuesday, August 5, 2008

My Man Has Prevailed!

Randey has finally, at long last, beaten this computer into submission. was only out of commission for about 36 hours in total, but it seemed like forever. I was threatening a walkout. Yep. I was going to walk out of this house and straight on over to Best Buy to get myself a new computer. (Patience has never been my strong suit!). Thankfully, that sort of drastic step won't be necessary. Yippee!! And not a moment too soon, either. After all, tomorrow is our very first "Finding a Weigh Out of Fat" discussion! I have my weekly weigh in at Weight Watchers tomorrow afternoon and I'll do a post about my adventures in weight loss once I get home from that. Brace yourselves. Tomorrow may be rough...I wasn't exactly a rock during my week in Florida and less than spectacular weigh-ins have a tendency to make me cranky. lol I'm excited to hear from you guys, though, about what works for you and what tips you can pass on. So everybody chime in on tomorrow's post and share your weight loss wisdom and/or your tales of woe (misery loves company, remember? LOL). The post probably won't be up until after 2:00, though, so be sure to look for it later in the day!

Computer Update

Cost to replace CPU fan: $12.97
Cost to replace CPU when husband decides to force it into place when reseating CPU onto fan: $85.00
Cost to replace teeth cracked from gritting them so hard: PRICELESS

Still have no computer of my own. Still using Randey's laptop. Still planning on blogging sometime this year.
I'll let you know how my computer saga turns out. Right after I finish gumming my breakfast to death.

Monday, August 4, 2008

I'm Back but my computer is gone...

Hi everyone! I'm back from Florida, but my CPU fan has gone out on my home computer (it probably missed me so much that it blew itself up in protest of my absence. lol). I'm starting to wonder just exactly what Sydney the Wonder Dog and Blu-Boy get up to while we're gone from home. Remember when we got back from vacation in June, one of our A/C units went out and my washing machine lost its mind? Now it's my computer. Sheesh. I think the dogs are trying to teach us a lesson for leaving them behind...Anywho, I'm still on Randey's laptop (which obviously doesn't like me or my typing habits) so I'm still not able to blog properly or even post pictures yet (can't find the adapter to download my photos on this thing). Randey's mission today is to find and install a new fan so I can tell you all about my adventures in the Sunshine state. My mission is to sit here and whine about it until he gets it done (I kid, I kid!!). Hope to be blogging by tonight!