Monday, December 29, 2008


I'm exhausted.

We had a ton of fun over the long Christmas weekend, but I really need some REST. Of course, that is nowhere in sight until after our New Year's Eve Ball. At the moment, I'm dreaming of lying in bed with a book while the Ball unfolds around me. But, of course, that won't happen!

Christmas Eve was our usual -- Indian food, back to the house to keep on wrapping, then a rainy walk on the Venice canals to see lights and there weren't as many as usual so that was a little disappointing! Christmas Day we had to make sure to get up kind of early (8:30) because we had to be done with the gifts for me, Mommy and DB by 11 to leave for PD1's Christmas bash. Santa DB was very good to me (and only went over our 4 gift maximum a little bit!): a gorgeous Tiffany heart necklace (my favorite), fantastic new computer (with no tower -- whole computer is in the monitor!), sound-blocking earphones, a new pillow and MORE. I also got the complete Harry Potter books, the new Wally Lamb book and my first Crockpot (which I loved so much that we took a photo of me hugging it!). ;-) We had lots of fun. Then we hurried and got "dressed" (I put on a top with Christmas jammy bottoms) and went to PD1's for more presents, food and fun. It is great to be with the kids and grandkids on Christmas. Indescribably great. :-)

Did I mention that PD1 is having a new baby? Yup. Due in July. That makes 4 for her and 6 total grandkids by next Christmas! :-)

Friday I got up at 7:30 AM to go to the gym. Please feel free to applaud. ;-)

We left at 10 to drop my mom off at home then drive to Nearby Town to see DB's mom and The Good One. I got some good shopping in at Old Navy while the boys had some alone time. Then one of DB's sisters and her brood showed up on Friday night too and we had a ball playing poker for matches until bedtime (after The Good One grilled us steaks and I made grilled potatoes and salad -- I was longing for green veggies after the meal on Xmas at PDs where the closest thing to a vegetable was a corn and massive cheese casserole).

Saturday we left Nearby Town at about 1 and headed home with a short pit stop at an outlet mall (WAY too crowded, but I needed some V neck long-sleeved t-shirts that they had on sale at the Gap). We got home in time for MORE wrapping (for Princess' Xmas and Smiley's birthday on Sunday), a quick nap then off to Indian dinner with some friends. We were home by 9 and in bed by 10. That was NICE. DB watched Blade Runner on the new contraption I got him that allows you to watch "instant" Netflix movies on your home tv through your computer. The idea is great, the resolution and sound not-so-great. I fell asleep before it was over. Long before it was over. ;-)

I got up at 9:30 yesterday morning and went to the gym. A standing ovation might be in order here. ;-)

Then we did our usual beach walk for breakfast and headed back to PD1's for more celebrating. And sugar. Of course. Then we stopped for dinner with some friends who live near her...luckily they agreed to Chinese food so I could get some veggies. I am craving veggies. Starved for them.

I also feel very very poochy. I have not been paying attention to what goes in my mouth other than to say "yum". The two gym trips may have helped a little, but I am sure there is damage. Which I will deal with...SOON.

Tuesday, December 23, 2008

Ho ho ho!

I truly do love this time of year at work -- everyone else in my business seems to be away (or hibernating) and I have a chance to catch up and clean my office in peace. Ahhhh, peace. It's lovely.

I am still veryveryvery busy getting ready for Christmas. Had a lot of holiday celebrating over the weekend and, now that most of our shopping (and my baking) is done, we are facing the daunting mountain of wrapping! That's what I'll be doing tonight after the gym. Wish me luck. I hope I don't reinjure my arm! ;-)

Tomorrow night will be the traditional Indian dinner then walking the Venice canals to look at the lights (if it's not raining too hard -- it has been chilly and rainy here and, frankly, I like it -- it feels Christmasy!). After presents on Xmas morning, we (me, DB and my mom) are all headed to PD1's house for the day. We'll see both the PDs and their families and open presents. Considering that I used to be a "I want to stay home in my jammies all day on Christmas Day" person, it's amazing how much I absolutely LOVE this tradition of getting together with DB's side of the family. It will be really nice to get to take my mom this year too. AND we get to wear our jammies to go there! Score! :-)

At the moment, we all plan to come back to our place for Xmas night (although DB may be going up to Nearby Town to hang with The Nice One who is there all alone with their mom right now). Mommy will go home on Friday morning and DB and I plan to go up to Nearby Town for overnight with The Nice One and their mom. Saturday we'll be back in town, then going to Korean dinner with some friends. Sunday is Smiley (number 3 grandchild)'s birthday party (her b-day is Monday -- she'll be 4) and we'll be back at PD1's house for that (and for Xmas with Princess who is now in Southern State with her daddy and his family). Yes, there will be NO REST this weekend. :-(

However, there WILL BE REST the next weekend. Count on it. Of course, that will be after the New Year's Ball that we are throwing at our house. ;-)

Merry Christmas and I wish all of you out there in blogland all the magic and joy of this season!!

Friday, December 19, 2008


That sounds nice a soft and cozy for this time of year, right? Well, today I'm thinking about cushions. When I got on the scale this morning, I realized that my cushion-y body was a little less so today -- down almost 3 pounds. Now I'm back in a range to get this party started again after Christmas. That is...if I stay here at this poundage. Which, clearly, is not guaranteed since this is "that" time of year. So at least I have a cushion if I eat really poorly next week.

This week I maintained my equilibrium by watching and making up for when I ate something "bad". For example: on a day when I had my piece of Godiva (two days this week, actually), I cut back elsewhere in my calories for that day. Now, you may have seen Vickie's comment about cutting out good nutrition in order to make up for "bad" food. And she's right. This is clearly not ideal. However, I am aware that I am a person who would feel extremely resentful if I did not have at least a few "treats" at Christmas. I understand everyone else can't/doesn't operate this way, but for me it is essential to figure out how I get through the holidays happy and not outrageously off the wagon. This week, this is what worked FOR ME. :-)

My plan for the rest of the holiday season is to do the same: basically eat less of what I usually do to make up for extra "treaty" calories that I want to enjoy. This just means being extra Drastic at meals where I am not in my usual place. This is how I can still stay in control. At least it is how I PLAN to stay in control... ;-)

I baked a bunch of cookies this week to give away and also made a dish for our staff potluck lunch today (wild rice salad...probably will be the healthiest thing there!). The cookies that I made with applesauce instead of Crisco came out ok -- they don't have the real look or texture of the "real" cookies I have made in the past, but they taste pretty good. I would definitely make things this way for my own and my family's consumption. Probably would NOT for gift-giving just because they are not as luscious as I think Christmas cookies "need" to be! Yeah, I know...

I did NOT lick the mixers or taste more than a tiny bite of any of the cookies. This is fairly easy for me because I am not a real sweet person (not that I don't like my sweets, but they are not a binge food). I was proud of myself for this. It probably is a first.

Last night I got totally frustrated with being a girly girl when it comes to cars: a couple of people had mentioned that my tires looked low. I couldn't see it myself and since I have an appointment to go in to the dealership for scheduled service tomorrow I thought I could wait. Then I looked again and they did look low so I went to the filling station to try to fix. I borrowed a tire gauge (couldn't find mine) that sucked. Measured (in the dark), filled, measured some more. Spent double on the air that I should have had to. I'm still not sure if my tires are at 15 psi or 40. Can't they make tires that don't have these problems!! Thank God DB is home did I ever deal without him?! (Answer: I never ever checked my tires unless they were totally flat.)

Tonight I am going with a few friends to work with a charity that distributes food boxes to the poor/disadvantaged for Christmas. We will be working at a huge hangar at the local airport and putting the boxes together and packing them up to be distributed this weekend. I am really looking forward to this. This year, more than ever, I am getting pleasure from helping those who are less fortunate than me. It gives me an amazing feeling of...LOVE.

Then tomorrow I have to get a bang trim, gym, buy last-minute gifts, take my car in then celebrate with some friends for dinner tomorrow night. Sunday is similar: gym, bake cake to take to Yule celebration Sunday night, Yule celebration then dinner with some other friends. Next week: more cookies for DB and Mommy. :-)

I love Christmas. And I love it more when I'm 20 pounds less than I was last Christmas! ;-)

Wednesday, December 17, 2008

Snuggly winter day...

A quick word about chocolate: I have noticed that when I eat REALLY GOOD DARK chocolate, I don't get those weird post-eating-sugar cravings/crashes. At all. When I eat this, I seem to be fine with "just one". Hmmmm...

...and my sweetie is away! :-(

But I am doing really well this week and didn't do too badly last weekend either! Everything went as planned over the weekend until Sunday morning: when I called PD1 to say when we'd be on our way over to pick up Princess, PD1 said Princess was on serious punishment and couldn't go. :-( This really made me sad because I was looking forward to it so much...and apparently Princess was too or this wouldn't have been such a bad punishment. BUT it all worked out ok. PD1 said she would go with me (yay!) and I told her that I was planning to have Princess shop not just for herself but for gifts for her family -- learning how fun it is to GIVE (which, by the way, she's very good at actually). This was a surprise for PD1 too and she quickly revamped the plan: got Princess to make a wish list for her family, all the things she'd like to buy for them. Then when we arrived at the house, Princess told me the gifts on this list that she would most want to get for her family...and PD1 and I were off! We got presents for Princess to give to everyone...and she was thrilled. And I sneakily got a lot of ideas for PD1 too... ;-) We had a really fun day.

I did another big shop on Monday night and filled in some gaps in our list. By this weekend when DB gets back there should only be a few things to finish up. Yay! I love that I got this huge family when I got DB and I love love LOVE shopping, but I am POOPED. And broke. ;-)

Today I got the last package off to my NYC should make it in time...whew! Tonight I have to go grocery shopping for ingredients to make things to take to two potlucks over the next few days. I'll be cooking and baking tonight too. And am going to try to bake cookies with shortening substitutes (applesauce or butter...I know, butter is not THAT much better, but...). I've never done this and hope they turn out ok!!

I've made it to the gym on my regular days this week except for Sunday -- I figure that 4 1/2 hours of non-stop on-my-feet shopping counts at least a little. ;-)

I'm feeling good. Despite that one piece of Godiva chocolate I had yesterday. ;-)

Friday, December 12, 2008

What I must remember during this season: EXERCISE

I am down a mere half pound this week. While down is better than up, this is really a maintain week for me and I'm grateful. I have not been perfect, but I have been mindful. And, MOST importantly, I have been right on with my exercise. I am reminded that I am not able to lose or maintain without a serious exercise element in my life. Even a week off really messed me up.

So this weekend as I look at possibly not making it to the gym on Sunday (am taking Princess for a special she and me shopping trip), I am also looking at how I will make that up. Possibly an at-home pilates or maybe I'll do an extra gym night next week. I MUST DO THIS if I want to maintain until January and continue losing after that.

All this is because I will not be perfect this month. I know it. I will eat a little more sometimes (not every day!) and I will drink (more on that below). And I enjoy that and I will try not to feel bad about it. I will take responsibility for what goes in my mouth. I think that last sentence might be a key to dealing with this life-long problem.

I want to "answer" Vickie's alcoholic suggestion on my last post. As a person who for some periods in my life has been an every-day drinker and who has had troubles with both food and smoking, I would be an idiot not to have considered whether I could be an alcoholic. I am aware that I have an addictive personality. I have looked more than once at "what is an alcoholic?" stuff on-line. And, while I certainly have some of the "symptoms" sometimes, for now I feel confident saying that I am not an alcoholic. BUT I definitely risk heading down that road. And I am mindful of it. I am trying not to be defensive here, but truthful. I think that, for people who don't drink or very rarely drink, the idea of someone having a drink every day (or more than one) probably sounds like an alcoholic. To me, someone who might do something every day that I don't might sound like an addict to that thing too so I understand. But the reality of my life is that I enjoy having a drink (or more)...and the challenge is not letting it get out of control. Yes, my friends, I am sure it's not a surprise to you that I can get out of control!!! ;-) It sure isn't to me.

Tonight we have our firm's holiday party. I am very excited because it's at an Indian restaurant that looks very cool and I love love LOVE Indian food (which, by the way, I also think is really good for you). Can't wait to go home and get dressed up and have some fun! :-)

Tomorrow I have my usual gym then some errands and tomorrow night we are going for a slumber party to some friends' house who live about an hour or so north of here. We haven't seen them since July and we can't wait! Then Sunday, the aforementioned shopping trip with Princess. (I am close to finished with shopping after my "shopping date" with DB on Wednesday night to Target. With my family and his, we have over 15 people to buy multiple gifts for. We are trying to go easy this year, but with my niece and nephew and his grandkids, it's hard!)

DB leaves for Nearby Town on usual, I'm not looking forward to his being gone, but I have lots of things to do: wrap presents, finish shopping and bake. Hopefully the week will fly by! :-)

Monday, December 8, 2008

My Friday post on Monday

Clearly, the weekend got away from me and I had no time to post my extended Friday blog. Like I said, holidays are fun, but tiring:

Friday night we had a friend over for a bit then we went out to dinner and fairly early to bed because Saturday I had to get to the gym, pick up my mom and take her to a two-hour eye doctor appointment (everything is ok, but the actual time out of my day was about 3 1/2 hours), get ready for a performance of The Christmas Carol at a local theatre group in a town that is part of L.A. that I had never been to (cute), then go to other friends' house to finish the night closing down their holiday party. We went to bed at 2. Got up around 10 yesterday so we could do our usual Sunday "rut" (walk down the beach for coffee and breakfast sandwich) before gym and more festivities! A friend of mine had a ladies' tea at an authentic British tearoom and it was really fun -- even though I didn't know anyone there except the hostess, all 10 of the women were really nice and interesting. I wondered if 10 men who didn't know each other could have chatted so comfortably. I ordered a lot less to eat than most (small sandwich with a little cheese and Branston pickles, salad, one small scone) and didn't leave feeling too stuffed. Small victories...

DB had to leave at 4:45 this morning for an overnight business trip. After he left, I had nightmares for the rest of my "night"'s sleep. I think I catastrophize more when he's gone and it bleeds over into my sleep. Not fun. for the Friday post:

I am NOT happy with being up 3 1/2 pounds in the two weeks with Thanksgiving in the middle. I am NOT happy that I drank beer virtually every night last week (I didn't mean that to sound like a diet tip -- I am working on really balancing much less food when I choose to drink). But I guess I AM happy that it's not worse. But it's a kind of resigned happy. Not REAL happy. I hope and plan to do better this week.

I AM so very happy in virtually every other area of my life. I have actually never BEEN happier. But the ONE THING that is making my life not perfect is my weight. I actually was wondering last week when I was sabotaging myself with yet another beer if I was doing this on purpose so I had SOMETHING that wasn't really great in my life. That sounds SO sick. I know I am not doing that consciously, but it sure looks to me like what I am doing anyway. I have started to think about going back to therapy, but really what I know I have to do is buckle down (again) and make overeating NOT AN OPTION (again).

The mechanics of losing weight are no mystery. The workings of my mind when it comes to my behavior are a little bit more of one.

I have thought about, worked on, lived with, cried over, and suffered through my weight problem for (literally) my whole life. I am certain that my metabolism has been damaged by the fluctuations in my weight. This makes me mad (oh oh, am I finally becoming an Angry Fat Girl?!)...I'm mad that I cannot eat as I see/perceive others do and maintain a lower weight....I'm mad that I somehow have still not really dealt with whatever it is that makes the weight haunt me so.

No answers today...just questions...and more holiday to-dos coming...

At least I plan to be "good" this week. Or maybe I should just say "today". One day at a time.

Friday, December 5, 2008

No time to blog, but...

...a lot to say so I'm writing public notes here as a teaser and to remind me what to say:

- Down over 4 pounds from Monday (net up in two weeks about 3 1/2 pounds)...and drank beer almost every day. :-(

- The ONLY thing in my life that continually haunts me with sadness/frustration is my weight.

- Holidays are fun...but tiring.

Will try to find some time to write over the weekend...I WANT TO!!!

Monday, December 1, 2008

The absurdity of the scale

I got on this morning despite my misgivings. It shows me up almost eight pounds from 10 days ago!!!! Now, I know that (a) I did not go to the gym for a full week (until yesterday) and (b) I did eat "bad" food this weekend, but EIGHT POUNDS? NO WAY. I seriously did not eat THAT much. I am posting this just to illustrate how volatile my weight can be...and how easy going UP is. God knows, going down is rougher (although my main reason for getting on the scale this morning was to have a high point that I would feel good on Friday about being down from!).

This scale adventure put a serious damper on my post Thanksgiving good feelings, but we did have a very fun weekend:

My office closed at 2 pm on Wednesday (a first in my 15 years here!) so my mom and I were able to get going early to Nearby Town. Traffic was pretty bad, but we made it in just over 2 hours (usually takes an hour and a half). We had pizza for dinner. Yes, that wasn't great, but not THAT horrible because it wasn't the greasy too cheesy kind. Settled my mom in her hotel around 9 pm and back to the family house to hang out.

Got up around 8:30 on Thursday to get going on the turkey. I had lots of help this year with side dishes (PDs brought green beans, sweet potatoes, corn casserole, strawberry pie and Sister-In-Law made fabulous mashed potatoes), so I only had to make the turkey and stuffing, oyster dressing, broccoli casserole and the pies (sweet potato and pumpkin). Did very well on food in the morning...just had some turkey jerky to tide me over. PD1 and her family arrived around noon and started cooking her dishes and PD2 and her family arrived around 3. We ate about 4:30 or so. I had one full plate with just my favorites, one-half plate with just a wee bit more broccoli casserole and corn and one and a half pieces of pie. That's it. May seem like a lot, but I don't think it really was. And probably would have been ok if I would have had time to go to the gym before yesterday...

We stayed up late Thursday night playing Apples to Apples with PD1 and her man out by the fire, then went back to the hotel for the night. Got up to the house Friday morning in time for breakfast, then gradually everyone scattered. My mom and I left about noon and DB started back a few hours later after some talks with The Evil One (yes, he's back to that). Lots of drama with his siblings over what is going to happen with the family house after their mom dies (which may not be too far in the future). The Evil One thinks he gets to live there with his wife rent-free and he is so mean (most times...although he was ok over T-day...not great) that no one else would ever get to come to use the house for family events. It was so great to see DB's girls enjoy being there for would be sad not to have that option. And the taxes on the house are incredibly low per year as long as the house stays in the family trust. But there are upkeep expenses and I don't think everyone will want to pitch in if they can't come and comfortably enjoy the house because The Evil One is growling around. It's so complicated with emotions and everything coming up and all the sibs are feeling angry/sad/resentful. :-(

Friday night we went to see Spring Awakening (which won the Tony a couple of years ago). Had great seats and it was a fun date night out, but the show was so-so. Maybe I'm too old to appreciate the teenage angst. But the music was really good! ;-)

Saturday we built concrete speed bumps/berms in two of our garages to keep them from flooding when it rains. That was an adventure! DB did most of the work because my arm was hurting too much (and I probably shouldn't be doing anything like that anyway!). I hope they work...we'll have to wait for the next rain to know for sure.

Yesterday we started to put up Christmas decorations...that was fun! Tonight I hope we can get our real tree (we got the aluminum one up yesterday). :-)

Then The Good One (DB's brother) is coming down for a few days this week and we have yet more theatre tickets for Wednesday!!! Tis the season to be art patrons... ;-)

So, I'm back on the good food wagon today. I'd be lying if I said I'm not displeased with my weigh-in today. I am displeased. Very much so. And sick of Monday posts always being about this similar thing. :-(