Monday, November 30, 2009

Bless me bloggers, for I have sinned

Although I had a perfectly on-plan breakfast yesterday morning, I went home afterwards and had a small slice of sweet potato pie. This is pretty much the story of my weekend. I ate better than I probably ever have during this period, but I still gained...and ate bad stuff along the way.

My "new" low-carb dishes on Thanksgiving were a hit -- I definitely will make the green beans cooked with bacon and onion and parmesan cauliflower again. YUMMY. I managed to not eat any potatoes and none of the stuffing from inside the bird (which I made with Ezekiel bread). But I did eat some of the oyster dressing (also made with Ezekiel) and the aforementioned pies. Oh yeah, and we got a great recipe for pumpkin martinis -- low-carb, but lethal. ;-)

I didn't manage to do anything at all that I planned this weekend (except two yoga classes -- one on Thanksgiving) because we ended up having 3 of the grandkids all weekend (and one other one for two days too). Whew. We had a lot of fun, but it was tiring!! We went over to the Microwaves' on Friday evening with turkey soup (which I made) and leftovers and our grandkids played with their kids. Saturday, after breakfast, we took the kids "sledding" on the sand berms at the beach and I went to yoga afterwards. Then took two of the kids for pedicures. That evening we had leftovers, played Uno (we played Uno a LOT this weekend!) and the kids watched a movie. Yesterday we had to take the three that were left (one left on Saturday afternoon) home to their new place about 2 hours north of here. When we got there, we helped them unpack and didn't get home until 7 pm.

Back on the plan today full-force. DB and I are both 10 pounds over our lowest weight after the debauchery this weekend. I have to go phone shopping tonight (if you have a particular smartphone that you love, chime in...decisions decisions), but will go to yoga at least two other nights this week (and the coming weekend). It feels great to be back to yoga...I look forward to every class! :-)

Hope you all had a great Thanksgiving...and I hope that things slow down some so I can catch up with all of you...

Saturday, November 21, 2009

I'm ok...

...but I'm really REALLY stressed out. Work is a non-stop treadmill and the pile of work is not getting smaller. Plus I'm suddenly really worried about the economy...we are not having our traditional firm Xmas party at night with family invited -- instead we're having a lunch with just the people who work at the firm. I'm also feeling like we might not get a Xmas bonus (which will be the first time that has happened in my 16 years there). This is scary mostly because no matter how indispensable I think I am, I'm not. No one is. We've already had lay-offs...and I'm under no illusions that the attorneys can't do my job if necessary...even though they don't want to. My only consolation is that I am SO busy...they must need me. Right? ;-)

Maybe it's hormonal, but I've had the stressed out weepies all week.

There are a few good things going on though:

I am still maintaining in a 2-pound range...about 4 pounds up from my lowest right before NYC. Doing things like eating movie theatre popcorn last night at Pirate Radio (thanks, DB!) is not making that scale go down any faster.

HOWEVER, I have been to yoga three times this week!! Yay! I need it right now more for my mind and spirit than for my body...but my body is getting the benefits too. Without this I would have REALLY lost it this week.

I realized on our plane trip to NYC that I just couldn't breathe myself out of my flying anxiety the way I used to when I was practicing yoga regularly. THAT, more than anything, got me realizing that I had to drag my ass back to the mat. Breathing the way that is healing takes practice...that's why they call it a yoga PRACTICE!

I love this new studio. I love the teacher who teaches every night. She never teaches the same class twice (according to her) and that is the way I like it. I know some people like the comfort of doing the same thing all the time and I do see the meditative benefit to that but, to me, there is no challenge when you are just doing the SAME thing every time. The classes are totally my cup of tea and they are (generally) small -- with more than 12 people the studio is jammed and the most I've had in a class so far is 6 (today).

It is great to be able to walk to yoga (good little warm-up) and home afterwards. I am loving this so much...and am grateful to the universe for somehow putting this in my path just when I needed it most. :-)

Just cleared the larger size pants from my closet and am dropping them off at Goodwill on my way to Thanksgiving grocery shop...there's no going back now!

Tuesday, November 17, 2009

More Science Experiment

So, Sunday night I was hungry. SOO hungry. TOO hungry. I had had just a half a veggie omelet, green salad and some lettuce/cottage cheese snack all day. By 6 pm I was too hungry. I hadn't had my meals every 3-4 hours and I was cranky. So DB and I headed to one of our go-to restaurants (where I know I can eat something yummy and not off-plan). But I was so hungry that, in addition to my usual "treats" there, I ate three yes THREE small rolls. BIG mistake. I felt super-duper bloated and horrible. Went to bed early.

Monday I got on the scale and, YUP, I was up a couple of pounds. And that is just from those three small rolls (I had been perfect the rest of the weekend). Despite continuing evidence like this in My Experiment, I am still amazed how fast and hard those night-time bad carbs hit. Fast.

Of course, I had lost those lbs by this morning, but that came from getting right back on program, perfectly and PRONTO. I am still up about 4 lbs from my absolute lowest pre-NYC-vacation weight. Still plugging away. Slowly slowly losing. No goal-time for getting to where I want to be.

But I did buy some pants this weekend that are the size I want to be -- 10!!! And, while tight, they fit. I also put on an old pair of 10s that I have kept and they were even a little loose (why aren't all sizes in all brands the same? arrrgh). I'm sure you all know how happy that makes a girl feel. :-)

Last night I went back to yoga...again. I found a studio very very close to my house (4 blocks or so... a quick walk) and have been wanting to try it but (as I've blogged before) just haven't dragged my booty over. Well, last night was the night. They offer candlelight flow (vinyasa) yoga from 7:30 for an hour every night. I loved it. I just LOVED it. The studio is tiny (love that), the instructor has amazing positive energy and it is SO not the trendy nightmare that invades so many big yoga studios out here. The emphasis is on healing and alignment and I love that. The instructor said to me when I arrived "this isn't workout/sweaty yoga" (or something like that). I said that was good because I have not been practicing regularly for a while. But, as I always find in yoga, if you WORK, you sweat. That doesn't mean speed, just work. It was perfect for me where I am now.

My body/mind felt so great afterwards last night. And today I am sore in all the right places. I can't wait to go back (Thursday night). :-)

Thursday, November 12, 2009


As you all know, I love Thanksgiving and cook for it every year. When I lost The Big Weight, I learned to modify my traditional dishes to be low/lower fat and I have kept that up for many years. This year, I want to try to incorporate some of my lower-carb philosophy into my T-day treats. I have come up with some ideas , but would love to hear any favorite recipes or ideas you might have that are low-carb (i.e., not potatoes, rice, bread, etc.).

I have already thought of these things:

- Mashed cauliflower with parmesan cheese instead of mashed potatoes (for me and DB only...other guests will still get mashed taters!)
- Green salad (which I've never had before at Thanksgiving)
- Green beans with bacon (again, a traditional thing I've never done for T-day, but YUM)
- Altering my famous broccoli casserole to remove some (or all) of the crackers (it's basically broccoli, cheese, butter and crackers)
- Using Ezekiel bread for stuffing

Any other fave lower-carb recipes you might suggest?

Wednesday, November 11, 2009

More than half of vacation gain is gone!

I'm down 6 lbs. since Sunday morning. It's amazing how the program works when you get right back on it! 4 more lbs. to equal my new low from right before vacation and I'm feeling strong.

Today I'm wearing some cute pants I bought at Goodwill in NYC...they just barely aren't too big so I need to wear them quickly! ;-) A good feeling while dressing in the morning...

Monday, November 9, 2009

Whirlwind NYC Week!

I'm baaaack. :-)

And I weigh a little under 10 pounds more than when I left. This is, of course, not great, but I was so low when I left that it is not a catastrophe. DB and I are doing carb deplete this week so things are back under control.

The beginning of the week we were pretty good foodwise and, of course, there is a lot of exercise with all the walking we do in NYC -- my sister is also on the program so we were doing well together. DB started to fall off the wagon with post-dinner ice cream with my brother-in-law and nephew early in the week. I fell off the cliff with the huge plate of nachos at midnight on Tuesday from room service. Oh oh. The abyss was reached Friday night when I ate pasta, popcorn and ice cream. Can you say carb overload? Yikes. So you can see why I'm actually not too upset about the 10ish pounds. It could have been worse and a lot of it is probably water.

On to happier subjects...

We arrived Halloween night. Went to the hotel (my brother-in-law works in fine dining at a very nice midtown hotel and he got us the family rate...and lots of other nice perks) and checked in then got on a bus uptown to meet my sister and kids at a party. My nephew was trick-or-treating in a high-rise building and my niece was out with her tween friends. The party was fun and, from the 26th floor apartment, we saw fireworks from Central Park to celebrate the next day's marathon. After we left the party (the rest of the family headed to my sister's for the night), DB and I ended up in Times Square. NYC is so fun on Halloween because it's a pedestrian city so you see EVERYONE in costume (I had a clown nose and devil horn headband...told everyone I was a scary clown until a little kid in an elevator told me I was neither scary nor a clown!). After Times Square we went down to the Village to try to catch the Halloween parade, but it was already over so we just wandered around in the drizzle (I do not miss rain) watching people and enjoying the vibe of the city. Got home after midnight (NYC time...this was just about 9 pm our time) and had a good Caesar salad for "dinner".

Sunday we got up late (even including the "fall back" time change) and went up to my sister's in Harlem to meet the family for breakfast (on plan) and then walked a few blocks to see the NYC Marathon. What fun! We were at about the 23-mile marker and were very impressed with how well most of the people were doing at that point. It was a kick to cheer people on -- a lot of them had their names on their shirts so you could cheer for them by name. One lady in front of us was high-fiving as many runners as she could. ;-)

The place we stood for the Marathon was right by my favorite NYC store -- Goodwill! So, of course, I had to shop a little. Found some amazing bargains (all really nice brands, in good condition)...and only spent about $40 total in this trip and another one on Monday!

Sunday evening we went to a 60th birthday party for a friend of my sister's family then DB, my sister and I went to dinner at a Mexican place for some grown-up time. Oh yeah...I guess those chips weren't exactly on program either...

Monday...hmm...other than another Goodwill trip, I think it was basically a quiet day hanging with the family while kids were in school.

Tuesday the kids were off school so it was their Special Day with DB and me. They both wanted to go shopping so we went to Toys R Us in Times Square for Nephew (7) and Macy's for Niece (12 going on 25). There is a huge ferris wheel IN the Toys R Us!!!! Wow. We went on it and had fun. Nephew was careful to buy just want he wanted (Legos, some Nerf swords, some Pokemon cards). We had lunch at the Hard Rock Cafe in Times Square and we all loved it -- good, reasonably-priced food and a museum to boot! Here is where we first noticed that all restaurants in NYC have calorie counts on the menu. VERY eye-opening.

After lunch we went to Macy's and Niece and I had a ball shopping while DB and Nephew grinned and bore it. ;-) The lady who checked us out told us that we could get 10% off the already-low prices because we were visiting from out-of-town. That was a nice surprise! I got an adorable LeSportSac bag for about $30 and Niece got a few things she really wanted too...score!

Wednesday (post-nachos and sleep-in our last night in the mom moved into the room for the rest of the week), I had a short business meeting at noon, then we headed up to Westchester to visit a very good friend of mine who is fighting leukemia. (I may have mentioned last year when she was first diagnosed. She went into remission after treatment last year, but came out of remission about 6 weeks ago. She has been in treatment in the hospital every since.) A friend of my friend drove us up there and that was so nice -- my friend has amazing friends taking care of her (no family) and that made me feel better. But it was really hard seeing her in that hospital bed. Once they get her stabilized, she will get a bone marrow transplant. Hopefully that will completely cure her. Be sure to register for the national bone marrow donor never know when someone might need this from you.

Thursday was my mom's big 8-0. :-) My sister and I surprised her by taking her to the Today Show that morning. My sister had gotten huge 8 and 0 silver balloons and we carried them around all day. At 8:30 when the anchors of the show came outside, my sister shouted to Meredith Viera that it was my mom's birthday and Meredith came over and interviewed her on camera!!!! My mom was THRILLED. After about an hour there (it was COLD), we went inside Rockefeller Center for breakfast overlooking the skating rink -- people kept dropping by our table to tell my mom happy birthday and that they had seen her on tv. We dropped my mom off at the hotel for lunch with a friend and we went home to get ready for the rest of the day. My sister had borrowed a friend's car so we didn't have to use public transportation this day (my mom has a hard time walking, etc.).

Mommy wanted her photo taken in Times Square on her b-day so the whole family headed there before dinner. Lots of fun and great photos. Then my brother-in-law had arranged for us to have an amazing dinner at his restaurant. Two of my mom's nieces and their husbands came and surprised her. It was really a lovely lovely dinner and a special day. My sister and brother-in-law outdid themselves and my mom was SO happy. :-)

On Friday, DB and I went to the Yankees' ticker tape parade in downtown Manhattan. Well, we got to within a block of was JAMMED. So much fun to see so many people so happy. We also walked over to Battery Park City (where I had never been) and saw the Statue of Liberty and Ellis Island from there. One of these times, I'm going to take DB out to see them closer... ;-)

Friday night were were going to go to karaoke, but decided to just stay home and play games with the family (after the aforementioned pasta and ice cream dinner...the popcorn was later).

Nephew had a soccer game in Central Park at 10 am on Saturday so we were up early. Lugged our luggage down there and went to get my mom at the hotel afterwards. The whole family had lunch together then we got our cab back to the airport.

I hate flying, but I love Virgin America. I love their purple and red color scheme. I love the screens on the back of the chairs where you can order food, movies, etc. with your credit card. I love that part a little too much. I don't want to say how much I spent on the flight!! But I was less scared than usual thanks to too much wine, my mom enjoyed watching Julie & Julia and I enjoyed watching The Proposal. The flight went by in no time and we were home.

Much as I loved the trip, NYC and, MOST OF ALL, my family, it was nice to be home...and to have yesterday to recuperate. :-)

Back on program and feeling good...missed you all and will catch up soon...