• April 2009
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focus

I was down 3.6 pounds this week, which was nice to see after no loss two weeks ago and a one pound gain last week.

I’ve lost 16.2 pounds so far this year. Four pounds a month. That’s good, I know, but often I feel a little impatient and discontented with that.

This week, if I begin to feel irritable about losing slowly, I will make an effort to focus on being happy for the loss and not unhappy that I’ve not lost two or three pounds each week. I know that the key to building new habits is a healthier lifestyle and that results in slow and steady loss. I want lasting health and new habits, not a quick loss that turns into a bigger gain after a short time. This will be my focus. 🙂

The king has arrived

The Lion King, that is… in Oklahoma City. 🙂 Performances began this past Tuesday and will continue through most of May.

This afternoon was the first time for Mom and I to volunteer for this show. We’ll volunteer at least five more times plus work in the concession stand twice over the next five weeks.

The show today was amazing.
A M A Z I N G.
It was much more than I thought it would be, even after the preview Chrissie and I attended last fall.

At the preview, many members of the cast sang a few songs from the production sans costumes. We also saw a video about costume design and many of the costumes were presented. At the end, we were given goodie bags with a program book, a stuffed toy of one of the characters (I got Scar), a dvd of show previews and a soundtrack cd.

The first song, The Circle of Life, when all the animals gathered around Pride Rock for baby Simba to be presented, was incredible. I’m not sure why, but at one point, I felt tears coming and had to force them back.

If you live near a city where The Lion King will be performed, I highly recommend that you attend if it’s at all possible.

On this day…

in 1564, William Shakespeare was born.

On this day in 1928, Shirley Temple was born.

At the end of this day in 2009, Natalie is exhausted from staying up too late every night this week and is going to bed soon.

Happy Birthday Mr. Shakespeare and Ms. Temple.

Evidently, I’ve been writing on Facebook too much because it’s become very easy to talk about myself in third person. I used to make fun of people who do that. Now Natalie will have to make fun of herself. 🙂

Good night.

changes

Since today is Earth Day, I’ve been thinking about the changes the kids and I have made over the past few years in an attempt to be more friendly to the earth.

Most of the changes, while deliberate, have been such gradual changes that the kids didn’t notice or complain about them.

A few of the changes we’ve made are:

1. No more paper towels. We use dish cloths to clean up messes and wash them with loads of towels.  We use cloth napkins instead of paper napkins at the dinner table.

2. We only run the dishwasher if it’s full.

3. We take shorter showers and keep a timer in the bathroom. When it dings that 5-7 minutes have past, it’s time to get out. Sometimes it’s more like 10 minutes with the girls, but it’s better than the 30 minute showers they took before I made them take shorter ones.

4. We recycle everything that our recycling center  accepts.

5. We bring home less plastic bags than before. We’re probably bringing in a 10th of what we used to have in the house. In the next year, I plan to have even less plastic bags in the house. I keep cloth bags and a cardboard box or two in the trunk in case I need them for groceries.

6. We turn of the water when brushing our teeth. Actually, we’ve been doing this for many years – since the kids watched Barney as toddlers and he taught them to turn off the water – so I won’t count this one.

6. As the lights have burned out, all have been replaced with CFL’s.

7. The car I drive is more fuel-efficient than any previous vehicle I’ve owned.

8. We buy produce and many other locally made products at the farmer’s market.

9. Before purchasing a book, I look first to see if I can find a used copy on paperbackswap.com, ebay, half.com or amazon.com.

10. We turn out the lights when leaving a room.

We have a lot of waste from J’s diabetes supplies.  It used to bother me that there is so much packaging  – the tubing, reservoirs, individually wrapped alcohol swabs and IV prep wipes, lancets, syringes, test strips, insulin bottles and packaging – but since she needs those supplies in order to survive, I will continue to gladly make sure that we have enough supplies on hand to get her through several months at a time.

The new change for this month: Turn off the computer at night instead of having it hibernate. I’m going to turn off the power strip each time we turn off the computer to make sure the printer, speakers, monitor, etc., all get turned off, too.

who will lose the most?

Do you watch Biggest Loser?
It’s one of the only shows I watch. The others are Last Restaurant Standing and Gordon Ramsay’s Kitchen Nightmares (both on BBC America).

I digress.

Did you watch BL tonight?
I cannot tell you how completely sick I am of that Helen’s crying about everything. Each time she’s on camera, she’s either bragging, crying about something or sending her daughter home so she can be selfish and stay on the show.

Ron is diabolical and I am still waiting for him to get voted off, but time is running out. They should have voted him off when they had the chance way back at the beginning of the season. The Godfather control freak stuff is getting old and he seriously needs to face the reality that he is not the boss of everyone. If he’d back off and quit spending all his time trying to push his son to the top by begging and trying to martyr himself, he could learn to be healthy for himself.

I wish Tara could see that she deserves to treat herself well, to be healthy and quit doubting her strength. That girl wins the challenges even when the odds are stacked against her, she keeps going and doesn’t quit, she has determination, is scrappy and is a winner. She’s turning out to be one of my favorite contestants.

It looks like Kristen’s weight loss this week was due to her not eating enough. She must not have remembered how last season Vicki’s husband didn’t lose much weight when he didn’t eat enough. It’s the opposite of how it seems weight loss should work, isn’t it? The video they made for Bob of their food showed that they weren’t eating enough, didn’t it? I think that’s what caused this week’s result.

Bob must be a great trainer. His teams always love him. Jillian is my favorite, though. I think she’s really great. I like her no-nonsense view of things and how she helps her team members recognize and start working through the issues that got them where they were when they came on the show. I’m sure Bob does that, too, but I relate more with to Jillian helps her team members.

I won’t say more, in case you haven’t seen this week’s show yet. The kids and I are happy that we have just a couple more weeks until the final weigh in. The last show is always so exciting. I love seeing how far everyone has come.

she was wearing a tail

My oldest daughter and I went to the Asian market Saturday afternoon. We found all sorts of foods to try that were new and some that she had tried before (new to me), along with the produce and other items that I like to purchase there.

As we were going down one aisle, we noticed that the lady who had just passed us had a big white fluffy tail sticking out of the back of her pants. Actually, it didn’t look like it was coming out of her pants, but more like it was hooked on her waist and hanging out of her shirt in the back. It was a very strange thing to see.

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See her there in the red shirt? I was trying to be unobtrusive, so I didn’t walk right up and ask her to pose with her tail and all. That would have been a w k w a r d. More awkward than it already was to have to explain to my 15 yr old that some people dress up like furry animals, that I don’t understand why they do it or what they gain from it, but that they do, for whatever reason.

Thanks, furry tail lady for presenting me with that lovely parenting opportunity. I’d have been happy to skip that one.

Taps

It’s 10:00 pm.  I can hear “Taps” being played by a trumpet outside. It sounds quite near.  Of course, the bells that toll at the top of each hour at the Catholic school/church that’s half a mile away sound very close, too.

Right before “Taps” started playing, I heard sirens.

Living very near Tinker Air Force Base, I have to wonder if this has something to do with a fallen soldier.

I hope not.

braces

Yesterday, B. had the spacer removed that has been hanging out in the roof of her mouth for several months.  She also got more braces on her top teeth.  Now each top tooth has something attached to it.

She’s thrilled to have the spacer gone, but not so happy about the additional brackets being added.

The orthodontist said that when her top teeth catch up with her bottom teeth, it will be time to add bottom braces. She’s right on track with is plan for her teeth, so all is well.  I’m still just so thankful that she won’t need to have surgery to shorten her lower jawbone, like he had originally thought when he consulted with our family dentist.

Songs of my life

Using songs from one artist only, answer the following questions.

My artist: Bon Jovi

ADDITIONAL RULE: I do not like so many rules.

1. Are you a male or female:  She’s a Mystery

2. Describe yourself:  Complicated

3. How do you feel about yourself: We Got It Going On

4. Describe your ex boyfriend:  In and Out of Love

5. Describe your current boy/girl situation: Welcome To Wherever You Are

6. Describe your current location:  Who Says You Can’t Go Home

7. Describe where you want to be: Tokyo Road

8. Your best friend is: Wild in the Street

9. Your favorite color is:  Wildflower

10. You know that: I’ll Be There For You

11. What’s the weather like:  Wild is the Wind

12. If your life was a television show what would it be called?   It’s My Life

13. What is life to you:  Livin’ On A Prayer

14. What is the best advice you have to give:  Stick To Your Guns

15. If you could change your name what would it be? Captain Crash & The Beauty Queen From Mars

cousins

This is my favorite photo of the 2 cousins whose birthdays are on April 2.  My son turned 14 this year and my niece turned 6.

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rain, glorious rain!

It’s been raining since last night and I don’t know when I’ve been happier for  rain.

This past Thursday, many homes burned to the ground in neighborhoods very close to my parents’ house here in central Oklahoma.  Yesterday, when Chrissie and her two youngest daughters were at Mom and Dad’s house, they had to evacuate because the fires had flared up again and were moving toward Mom and Dad’s house.

As I was leaving the grocery store, Mom flagged me down in the parking lot to tell me what was going on.  Dad didn’t leave when they were evacuated.  He was trying to figure out what to do with his and his friend’s horses before he could feel comfortable leaving.  He was planning to put halters on each horse with his name, address, and phone number and cut the fence so they could escape the fire before he left.    Residents of that area were able to go back home after the fire was contained a while later, but during that time and until the rain began, I worried that the flames would move their way again.

Thinking about evacuating and what I’d be able to pack in the car brings to light what is most important to me and what my emergency plan is.  I’d make sure my kids were in the car (of course) with a change or two of clothes.  We’d also take our two dogs and our cockatiel along with their food.  We’d pack J’s insulin, pump site changes,testing strips, lancets, syringes – all the diabetes supplies I could fit in a suitcase.   I’d pack my photo cd’s, the quilts Meema made, and the file folders that have my financial information, birth certificates, and medical records.  I also have one small box for each child that has papers, artwork, and special momentos they’ve made through the years that I’d want to bring.  If I had time, I’d grab a few other things, like items Mom has brought back from her overseas travels, the wreath Dad had made for me from a rope he used when I was a kid, the Bible I’ve had since I could read, the Christmas ornaments I’ve had since I was 3 days old.  I’d probably throw in my jewelry box (although I don’t own any really expensive jewelry) and that would be it.  All of those things are within easy reach and could be packed in less than 10 or 15  minutes.

I know I’d be wishing that I had a huge U-Haul truck instead of a small car if I was faced with making those choices, but really, most things can be replaced.   I’d only take the things that I could never replace, things that have memories tied to them.  I feel so badly for the people who’ve lost all those things this week.

During this time of year, when Oklahoma has lots of tornadoes and (prior to the rain) fire hazard warnings, I keep a bag filled with J’s pump supplies and syringes packed in the laundry room.  Whenever there’s a tornado warning or watch, I feel better knowing that I can grab the bag, get insulin out of the fridge and go.

I have begun assembling an emergency kit for my family, but it’s not complete yet.  This past week has reminded me that I must not stop gathering supplies until I’ve gotten all the necessary items in one place.

Side note:  I really need to start remembering to turn up the ringer on my cell phone if I’m going to be carrying it around in my pocket.  Mom and Chrissie had tried to call me to tell me about the evacuation, but I didn’t hear the phone ringing when I was in the grocery store.

j is for jas…

This has been a long week.

Yes.  I know it’s only Tuesday.

Oldest daughter (15) is home from her band trip to San Diego.  I’ve heard many fun stories and am delighted that she was able to go.  I’m proud of her for working hard to earn half of the money to pay for her trip and most of her spending money.  And not only because that was less for me to pay.  But because I believe it taught her a valuable lesson about working hard to reach a goal, saving, spending on what’s important and not just blowing the money she worked so hard for.   She’s a good kid.

I have loads photos to post.  I think that instead of posting them here as blog posts, I will just upload them to my flickr stream.  They can be viewed by clicking on this link to flickr or by clicking on the flickr photo box in the left sidebar. I’ll continue to label them by which day (of 365) the photo was taken.  I’ve gotten so far behind and am not sure I have the fortitude to mess with getting them all on the blog.

This is for my good friend who’s initials are CSV:

The word jasmine is right before the word jasper in the Merriam-Webster’s Pocket Dictionary that I keep at the computer desk.  Someone at my house wanted you to know that.  🙂

Oh, yeah.  Guess who got a Hard Rock San Diego Bon Jovi t-shirt?  Yep. Her name is Natalie.   15 yr old daughter brought it back from her trip for me.

EDIT:  I can tell I am tired.  This is a very ramble-y post, jumping all over the place.  Plus, it’s taken ages to get it finished because my fingers are not connecting to my thoughts very well right now.

Good night!

another sticker!

This morning at Weight Watchers, I weighed 1.6 pounds less than last time (two weeks ago). That brings my total weight loss since Jan. 2, 2009 to 15.2 pounds.

That also means that I got another 5 pound sticker at the meeting. WHEE! I feel really silly for being so excited about a little yellow star with a 5 in the middle of it. But seriously, it’s a great feeling!

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When I get to work on Monday, I’ll add two more paperclips to the chain of paperclips I have hanging near my desk to represent the weight I’ve lost. One paperclip for each pound. When I feel tempted, I find myself looking at the paperclip chain and trying to make healthier choices. It’s funny how small visual reminders can help me stay on track.

turning 14

My son will be 14 tomorrow. He was born a few minutes after noon. I remember thinking that I couldn’t possibly be in labor because it didn’t feel like it did when his older sister was born. I didn’t have as much pain and thought it would go on for a couple of days. He was born six hours after the contractions started, which was two hours after I got to the hospital. No epidural, no pain medicine, just a quick delivery and a baby who was too long for the little 0-3 month size outfit I brought to the hospital to take him home in.  That was the only day he wore those footie pajamas.  After that, he had to wear the 3-6 month old size clothes.

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At birth, he was 7 pounds 15 ounces, 21 inches long. Now he weighs about 170 pounds and is 6 feet tall. It’s still a little weird to have to look up to see his face when I’m standing next to him.

Happy birthday, my dear son. I love you!