Monday, May 31, 2010

Diet Diary Day - entry 12


At my weigh in this week I was down 3.2 pounds from last week. Finally! Although I feel like the extra cardio was helping me shrink inches wise, it was really nice to not feel like I was living in the gym last week. It also seemed like I had more energy and stamina in Zumba because I wasn't so tired all the time. I really, really needed some concrete evidence that this whole healthy lifestyle plan was working.

Mid week last week, I tried on a couple things that I bought while Mom was here. While they fit okay then, now they look better - the difference between having to wear control top hose or Spanx to leave the house, and being able to just put on the dress and go. And, on a lark, I tried on a bridesmaid's dress I kept from a wedding I was in almost 10 years ago - and it fit. So now if R and I have an official event to attend, I have a great dress to wear. Even though I think in the 11 years I've known him, we've attended 1 formal military event. But still, if we need to go, we can go without my having to go shopping. I can't tell you how happy that makes me. Pretty freakin' happy, actually!

It's only now that I'm really seeing clearly how much being obese has affected my life. I would have said that it really didn't at this point last year, and that I was continuing on with life in a normal way. The truth is that it affected every part of my life. I didn't want to leave the house most of the time because those looks that fat people get in public? Uh, we SEE those. And they hurt our feelings because believe it or not, we fatties have feelings. Lots of 'em, which I'm willing to bet is at least part of the weight problem to begin with. What also hurts? The commentary on what we are eating, as do the looks from salespeople when we go to look at clothes in stores that don't carry our size (fat people DO buy gifts for people. some of whom are a normal size). Some people use alcohol, drugs, excessive shopping, or gambling to deal with feelings, pain, issues, etc. Some people use food. It's cheaper, it's everywhere, it's legal, and until you're fat, it's acceptable. (Insert breakup ice cream binge scenario here.) I'm just sayin'...

On Saturday, we had to climb a ton of steps to get to one of the raft rides. We ran out of steps and into the back of the line before I ran out of breath. And we were way up there, only about 10 steps from the top to go. I'm not kidding, I felt like I had just climbed a mountain - in a look what I accomplished way and not because I was panting and heaving due to lack of oxygen way.

Progress, people. I am finally back to making progress. YES!

Sunday, May 30, 2010

Why is my child in the closet?

The last couple of days, T has been going into the pantry and shutting the door. This doesn't sound like anything to write about until you see a picture of our pantry and realize that the only place T could fit is between the floor and bottom shelf, which wouldn't provide enough room for him to even sit up. So why on earth would he want to hang out there?

I figured it out this morning when I opened the door and saw the scissors and the other evidence from the scene of the crime. We had some mini M&M's leftover from Easter, and T somehow got them down from the top shelf (probably with the assistance of the mop handle). I'm not sure how I feel about the kids being that kind of clever this soon....but I'm also a little impressed. So T shanghaied the mini M&M's, grabbed the scissors, and proceeded to have an M&M orgy while curled into a fetal position in the bottom of the pantry. heh. I mean, I'm going to have to rethink a few things for sure. What's the point of having a top shelf if the kids can get stuff off of it with minimal effort?
The humorous part of this morning, even though I missed it since I was in the shower, is that T got himself all set up with the candy and scissors, and apparently reached under the door to pull it shut. But because there is so little space between the shelves and the door, T couldn't get back out. Again, heh! I'm glad R was downstairs to be able to let him out, and I hope T will think twice about completely shutting the door next time. I doubt it though. Really, really doubt it. I mean, with the promise of unlimited food (provided he gets it off the shelf before closing the door), why would he? It's going to be an interesting summer, especially when S figures out what's going on and wants to get in there with him and there won't be room.

Saturday, May 29, 2010

It's official!

photo by Annie Pennington Photography
Our divine resident diva is fully potty trained! Way to go girlie! Now to find you a preschool....


Oh, how I hate to be outside when it's hot - UNLESS - there's a pool involved. Or a sprinkler. Or a water hose. Or just water at all - unless we are talking about lake or river water. I haven't wanted to stick as much as a toe in that since I was about 10 and my step sister freaked me out by telling me that water moccasins were everywhere - lakes, rivers, streams, oceans, large name it. Water you couldn't see through = water moccasin potential. She was two years younger but I totally believed her. I must still believe it to some extent, because I get a bit freaked if I can't see through the water. Of course now I'm also concerned about what people dump into the water sources - trash, industrial waste, who knows what's in there. Yuck!

Today we packed up and headed to the water park at Six Flags. Today was opening day and the weather was perfect. We got there shortly after it opened and it was already getting crowded. We changed into swim suits and the kids chomped at the bit because I insisted on hosing them down with SPF 50 and making them wait 15 minutes before they got in the water. Priorities! We are all as pale as pale can be. R burns really easily, I used to tan really easily but now I tend to burn since I shun the sun as much as possible, T tans super easy, and S burns super easy. Either way - we all got hosed down with sunscreen, some of us with two different types. There was a fog of SPF in our general vicinity. Seriously? You could have walked through our general area and been protected for at least half an hour afterward. And also? The spray mist sunscreen is more convenient, but if you get it in your mouth - good lord, that's nasty!

Finally, off we went...the water park had a concrete beach. Now that's what I'm talking about! (see photo above courtesy of The The kids had a blast playing in the waves and R and I loved that the majority of the pool was shallow enough that the kids could stand up with no problem. We eventually made it over the the kiddie lagoon, which was a combination wading pool and water playground. T was in water pirate heaven. S didn't like the bigger kids area since it involved getting occasionally doused with water with very little warning. Plus, water was dripping everywhere (well, duh! it was a playground in a pool after all) and it kept getting in her face and it made her cranky. I find this completely ironic since she's the most likely to splash. And I strongly feel that if you dish it out, you'd better be ready to take it. But we found an area for her as well at the side of the kiddie pool. It was a cool little pirate ship and you could climb all over and through it, and slide down off of it. We spent a good amount of time there and then headed to the lazy river where we floated our cares away. After that, we went down the family raft ride, which everyone but S loved. A quick break for more sunscreen, something to drink, a potty break, and we did it all again. S was so exhausted when we left around 4 that she fell asleep in the car in no time.

We ran by the commissary on the way home to pick up a few things, and then we unloaded the car. R grilled a yummy, yummy dinner, the kids got baths and went willingly to bed a little early. I'm happy to report that no one got seriously sunburned, even though R is a bit pink in some places. I can't wait to see what tomorrow brings. Hopefully it will include more time at a pool so I don't have to worry about murky water and what lurks in it. Goodnight, everyone! What did you guys do today?

Friday, May 28, 2010

My kind of Friday

I am one very grateful woman today! Sex and the City 2 opened yesterday. I watched almost the entire series on HBO back in the day and I liked the first movie. When R saw the trailer for it a few weeks ago, he told me to decide when I wanted to go and let him know. We talked about my going to see it last night after Zumba, but I wasn't going to have enough time to come home, shower, change, and then get to the theater for the 10 pm show. And believe me, I was going to need to shower after a Misti-led Zumba class! (BTW-the new shoes were great. It's going to take me a bit to get used to them, but they only weigh 3 ounces so it's literally like Zumba-ing on air.)

Instead, I asked R if he'd mind if I went today. Most people would be working, so I could go to an early show and not have to worry about trying to find a seat if I was running late. The kids loved Shrek 4 enough that they asked to go and see it again, so it worked out that R and the kids went to see Shrek (since he didn't get to go with us earlier this week) and I went to see SATC. I love it when a plan comes together!

No spoilers here, but I did really like the movie. But I like the characters, so it would be difficult to make a SATC anything I didn't like. After the movie, we came home and did some yard work and we let the kids run through the sprinkler until dinner. Tomorrow we are either going to the pool or to Six Flags, depending on the weather. Welcome summer!! Today was really warm, but much less humid so I actually enjoyed being outside when it was over 80 degrees. Will miracles never cease?!?! And also...the jeans I bought that were a little tight at the time? They are now almost too loose. WOOOHOOOOO!

Thursday, May 27, 2010

Something just really, really good.

I have HUGE feet (hush Tina). My feet are mostly flat, they tend to roll inwards which I think has something to do with having no arch, and they are large. Like, I have to buy my athletic shoes in the men's section because I have yet to find a comfy pair of women's athletic shoes. Like, I'd do just as well to wear the shoe box most days as the shoes that were in them. So it's extremely unusual for me to buy a pair of shoes without trying them on.

This week I ordered two pair from Zappos. One specifically for Zumba and a dressy pair, since I haven't replaced any of my 'good' shoes after they wore out and I wasn't working anymore. Really- it wasn't like I had anywhere to wear heels anyway and the thought of falling down a set of stairs while carrying one or both of the kids terrified me. I consider this a legitimate concern because when R and I were having our engagement pictures taken, I actually did fall down a set of steps. No, it the photographer didn't get it on film even though that would have been pretty funny. It's also why I decided I didn't want to have to walk down steps when I got married. Safety first and all that. Luckily, I was wearing a long blue knit dress so it covered the scrapes, scratches, and bloody knees. I am so totally not graceful. It's a little sad.

But back to Zappos. I've been debating about buying a pair of Zumba shoes for several months. The ones the instructor recommended cost more than I wanted to spend and the shoe manufacturer didn't offer wide widths. But, I did find a pair that's mostly mesh and therefore stretchy that other people reviewed as working well with people for people with wide feet that don't need much arch support - and that is me, my friends. Plus they were way more affordable and Zappos offers free shipping. Aren't they comfy looking?

I order the shoes and realize after I've completed the order process that I didn't change my shipping address from Germany to our current address. Aw, nuts! So I call the customer service center hoping that they can help me. If not, I might see those shoes by the time the kids leave for college. Seriously - we are still getting mail that was sent our way in January and is just now being forwarded. It's a mess. And I doubt the military post office would forward shoes anyhow.

So this is what happened - the customer service agent (the very sweet Diane) not only fixed the address, but she upgraded my shipping to overnight, added me to the VIP club, and then wanted to know if there was anything else she could do for me. Hands down the BEST customer service I have ever gotten. She emailed me confirmation of everything we talked about, and lo and behold, my shoes were at my front door by Wednesday morning (having ordered them late Monday night). I think I'm going to buy all my shoes at Zappos from now on. Good prices, fast shipping, excellent customer service, on target customer reviews...I'd be silly to order from anywhere else! And I'm not even being paid to review them! I :heart: Zappos!!!!! Now - off to Zumba in my new shoes!

Perception is reality

Someone I know used to say that aaaaaall the time. I hated it. REALITY is reality. Or at least it was before they put it on TV and started scripting and staging it. Nothing is sacred these days. Back to the point. Apparently, I hated that saying so much that I can't even remember who said it anymore, even though I've been racking my brain for a while trying to remember. Feel free to chime in if you know...

No? Alrighty then. Moving on.

I've been thinking about perception a lot lately. For example, the lady in my Zumba class whom I always thought was giving me the stink eye turned out to be really nice. BONUS -she's British, and I LOOOOVE her accent! I could listen to her talk for hours. But I would never have known that had I not decided to speak to her. Who knows what she thought about me...maybe she thought I've been giving her the stink eye. I do steadfastly stand by my impression of Rainbow Brite as a bit of a snot though. But in all honesty, I think that might my own insecurity coming through. Shame on me if that's the case. Perception. It can be a force for good or evil.

I've been looking for an occasional babysitter for the kids and if searching through oodles and oodles of potential influences on your kids isn't stressful enough, how much can you really tell from a profile? Because, really, who is going to put anything negative on their profile? "Hi! My name is Britney. I'm 22 years old and I drink like a fish, so I'll generally be hung over when I'm in charge of your precious little darlings. I'm happy to take your money to watch your kids, but they are going to sit in front of the TV for hours on end and I'm going to let them eat whatever they want, because, hey - you won't be paying me enough to care about their nutritional needs. Oh, and my boyfriend will be over a lot. He just got out of jail, and we haven't seen each other much in the last year."

It's kind of the same thing with meeting them briefly. You get an impression, but no guarantee that it's accurate. See how I analyze myself into a virtual black hole? I think too much. It might actually be dangerous now. I didn't do this as much before I had kids. I wonder if it's hormonal....

Anyway, with all my over-analyzing, I still managed to hire a baby sitter who pulled a no show on Tuesday night. Although, in her defense, we had a miscommunication about a week and a half ago. She called one night when I wasn't available and talked to R. She said she was told I'd call her back, R said she said she'd call me before she came on Tuesday. Then she called and cancelled because she was sick. That's cool - people get sick and she has a full time nanny position, so she would have worked all day and evening being sick. Totally understandable! We rescheduled for this past Tuesday. She never called, she never showed. We called her and left a message - was she okay? Had we mixed up times or dates? Was it just not a good fit? I'll never know because she hasn't returned my call. What's my perception about all of that? I just don't think the chemistry was right. It happens. Plus, T told me the one time she watched them that she stayed on the phone a lot. Doing that with my kids is like waving a red flag in front of a very angry bull. It's seen as a challenge by them, no doubt about it. It couldn't have been pretty. I'm actually surprised she agreed to come back after that. Plus, I'm not much of a phone person these days. Something about having to talk on the phone for years at work has left me feeling....not so telephonically inclined. This is a definite minus for me, because the entire planet seems attached to their cell phone/iPhone/Blackberry. I still don't text and our cheapo pay as you go phones aren't set up to get text messages, so if you know my number and are texting me, I'm not ignoring you, I just don't get 'em. I swear. No, really!

So...perception. Anyone out there have any good stories that make me look less neurotic?

Wednesday, May 26, 2010

Hump day

Hi. Rough week, and I'm tired. I haven't been feeling very humorous today. Of course, I've been watching on demand episodes of Intervention, and there's nothing funny about seeing these people struggle with addiction. It makes me sad, so why do I watch it? I think it's the hope of the happy ending, even though I know not all endings are happy. The whole blender thing is proof of that.

Since I'm really not in the mood to write today, here are some pictures to distract you.

Tuesday, May 25, 2010

Beware the blender

What oh what to talk about today?

Tonight my blender showed me who was boss. I was innocently trying to make a Yoplait Smoothie and the blender wasn't interested in cooperating. Then I noticed that it was leaking from the bottom. Drat it! This is what you get for using the fat free milk. If I had used whole or 2% milk, I'm convinced that the fat in the milk would have prevented so much of it leaking out the bottom. I'm kidding, but I still think it's a plausible theory.

This isn't the first time I've had trouble with this blender leaking, but tonight was the final straw since on top of the leaking, bits of triple berry smoothie are being splattered everywhere. And by everywhere, I really mean all over me and my favorite white shirt. But that's okay. I like polka dots. Even if they aren't evenly spaced or the color of my choosing.

I do, however, have more news about the blender. We've decided to send it a nice blender farm in the country where it can frolic and play with other tired, spunky, splattery blenders and live happily ever after. The end.

Monday, May 24, 2010

Diet Diary Day - entry 11

The past week has been.....interesting. No real change in my weight (I'm down about half a pound) but I didn't really follow a super strict diet plan, nor did I track my food or exercise like the week before. I did, with the exception of one day, eat sensibly. I followed the advice of my doctor (shocking!) and reduced the time but increased the intensity of my cardio sessions and bumped up my weight training. I can't wait to see if this change in my workout makes a difference in my BMI, endurance, and weight.

But you know what? I've been staring at this entry and trying to complete it off and on all day. It's week 11 and I'm just a little tired of talking about this. I feel like it's time to really buckle down, figure out what isn't working and start doing what will work. You know, the whole - put your money where your mouth is thing. There have been some really stressful things going on (but really - who doesn't have some level of stress in their life) in the last week, and I just feel....talked out. And exhausted.

And surprisingly - especially for this to be coming from me - this is it for today. To paraphrase and possibly quote Forrest Gump (I'm too tired/lazy/unconcerned to look it up right now) "....and that's all I've got to say about that."

Sunday, May 23, 2010

Slide right by...

Last night we planned to take the kids to see the new Shrek movie at the drive in. Oooooh! I love a drive in! The first weekend R and I spent time together, we went to a drive in. I have no idea at all what movie was playing, but I do remember being really, really happy. I also remember seeing Legends of the Fall at the drive in. Brad Pitt in that role also made me really, really happy.

But now I'm off track. A-hem. Shrek 4. At the drive in. We had popped our own popcorn to take and the kids were excited about the idea of the movie, even though they didn't quite get the concept of what a drive in was. We headed out in the general direction and I started to program the GPS. Of course our GPS couldn't find the address, no matter which way I spelled it. Stupid GPS. Why I ever think it's going to come through for me after that fiasco in Belgium when it directed me the wrong way up a one way street is a complete mystery to me. Luckily, R had anticipated this issue and printed out directions on Google Maps, so we got there plenty early only to find out that Shrek was sold out. Phooey. I guess lots of other people love drive ins too. I wonder if it has anything to do with Legends of the Fall or Brad Pitt...

Today dawned warm and sunny and with no formal plans. We hung around the house all morning. I had a great talk with Dad, then we all headed to the Y. After working out, we went to McDonalds and got ice cream cones (only 150 calories - totally worth it) and then headed back home. It was so hot the kids didn't want to jump on the trampoline, but they asked if we could hook up the hose and run through water. Good idea. Then I remembered that Mom got the kids a slip and slide for Christmas. So we hooked it up. Our back yard is slanted just enough to make the slip and slide work well. T took to it right away, but what else do you expect from the kid who used to slide down the entire length of the BX aisle in Germany. S took a little more convincing. Before long, R and I slid into the action too. Once S slid down once on my back, she was slipping and sliding like a little pro all by herself. Now, I don't know if slip and slides have undergone massive improvements since the 70's (probably), but it was a smooth ride today. No big lumps of dirt or rocks to stop you in your tracks and there was a small pool of water at the end to slide into. Just all around fun for all of us.

After we disconnected the slip and slide, the kids jumped on the trampoline and looked for rainbows while R sprinkled them with water from the hose. Then the kids wanted to take a turn with the hose, and while T pretty much listened to us about not spraying the neighbors, the house, and us, S was not as diligent. She would spray us and laugh manically. This one is going to be trouble.

But you know what? This weekend was the perfect blend of memories from my childhood with memories I hope my kids will carry of their childhoods. It doesn't get much better than that.

Saturday, May 22, 2010

Strawberry fields

One morning last week before the TV got hijacked by Nick Jr., the local news did a story on strawberries. This, of course, made me want to go and pick strawberries. The kids are old enough now that it should be fun, right? But when I looked up the address of the place featured on TV, it was a little farther than I thought. It seemed a little too far to go to pick strawberries since I wasn't sure if the kids would like I put the idea in the back of my head. And then, on Friday on our way to Zumba, I saw a sign for a strawberry festival. How festive! So R and I decided we'd take the kids in the morning to go and pick strawberries.

We were out the door this morning by 7:40 and, after so much rain lately it looked to be a glorious day. We found the strawberry field with no trouble and headed out for the picking. T only wanted the (and I quote) 'big, juicy, red strawberries'. S wanted all the strawberries. It didn't matter if they were ripe or rotten, big or small, red or green. R found a frog which he picked up and showed to the kids. T wanted to hold it, but it scared him a little when the frog moved. S was happy to observe from a safer distance and continue picking strawberries. After we filled three bins, we paid and walked back to the car. What a great experience and a great morning. We got home, washed the berries, and then had some with lunch and dinner. SO yummy!

Friday, May 21, 2010

You just never know

There are times when posts come easy to me, and times when I have to really think about what to write. I try to strike a balance of honest but discreet - not everyone I know wants to be a subject entry in my blog. I totally understand that. Add to that certain..ahhh...expecations on the family side and often my entries are a little more edited than - say - a direct email from me to you on a particular subject would be.

And I also learned a valuable lesson about spouting off (well, spouting off too much) about someone in a blog entry before I get to know them. The people I run across that I have no intention of knowing? Fair game, baby. Need an example? Happy to oblige.

In the Monday afternoon Zumba class, there's a young girl. She's probably 10ish. The first time I saw her in that class, I was all, "awww...look. How sweet! She's coming with her Mom to Zumba!" Only, she really acts like a little snot. Within 15 minutes of getting to class and watching her look at other class members and then run over and whisper and giggle with her (I think) older sister, I decided that perhaps she wasn't cute at all. Not even a little bit. So I only feel a little guilty when I roll my eyes when she wears crocs to class or knee length rainbow socks. I bet they are toe socks too. If I didn't have the impression she was such a snot, I'd find her quirky and original, but I'd still question the intelligence of wearing crocs to a Misti-led Zumba class. That's just asking for a broken ankle. Well, okay, it would be asking for a broken ankle if I were wearing crocs. For Rainbow Bright, I'm sure it will all turn out okay. The popularity gods will see to it, I'm sure.

On the flip side of that equation, there's a lady in class that always seemed to be giving me the stink eye. I thought at first that maybe I was making a mountain out of a mole hill, but once Samantha agreed with me and Mom even conceded that I had a point, I had to wonder why. Did I remind her of someone she knows? Did I cut her off in traffic? Has she seen me in public with my kids and decided I'm insane? What? What could it be?!?! So a few weeks ago, I decided to speak to her. And I did. You know what happened? She spoke back. SHOCKING. And now we exchange pleasantries. It's lovely. Plus, she's English and I love her accent. Just goes to show me that you just never know.

Wednesday, May 19, 2010

Okay. It wasn't so bad after all.

I hate going to the doctor. Loathe it. Sit in the waiting room feeling like I'm going to be sick kind of hate it. I have never liked it, but after my experience with Dr. Frank Johnson, creepo extraordinare in Germany, I really, truly despise doctor's visits. Of course the main reason I have always disliked going is because my weight is always a focus. And by a focus, I mean the reason blamed for pretty much anything that would bring me into a doctor's office.

Major heel pain making it hard to walk, much less plod on a treadmill, elliptical, or aerobics class? It's cause you're fat Ms. Dahl.

Carpal tunnel issues seriously aggravated by using a hand breast pump for three to four months? Have you thought about losing weight, Ms. Dahl? That can sometimes help reduce inflammation.

Super heavy female bleeding pretty much non stop for the better part of a year? Yes, a year (that's how much I hate going to the doctor). If you lost weight Ms. Dahl, your period would probably get lighter. (Uh, probably?)

Swollen foot because I injured it when I was standing on an unstable chair (yeah yeah) while trying to clean an intake vent in the ceiling of our old house? Ms. Dahl, I really think that this could have been avoided if you were less heavy.

I could go on, but you get the idea.

So yesterday, I had my list of issues to talk about for my physical. Nothing serious. I want to keep an eye on my blood pressure, because it's higher than I think it should be with my lifestyle changes. I'm having some pain in my arm and my lower back and want to make sure what I'm doing in the gym isn't going to make it worse. I want a referral to dermatology for a thorough skin cancer screening because I have a couple moles that are changing and it's better to be safe than sorry. Plus, I'd like to see if there's anything that can be done about these doggone age spots and my thinning hair. And also... WHY OH WHY am I not losing any weight!

In the military, you have to arrive 15 minute prior to your medical appointment. This was my first time with this doctor, so I got there about 20 minutes early because I knew I would have to do paperwork too. I was surprised when they took me back within 5 minutes. I weighed in (BLAH), got my vitals taken and, answered a few questions (earned some mad respect when I said I was going to Zumba 4 to 6 times a week...sweet!) and was told to wait for the doctor.

Get this - I still didn't have to wait long. Crazy! (Dear Spang med clinic - please COME HERE and take notes. Stat!)

My new doctor walks in (golf clap please) and we start talking about my exercise and nutrition. I, being emotional and frustrated about this anyway, burst into tears. Yay me. Way to be a freakin' grownup. First thing Dr. writes down once he leaves the exam room is probably 'emotional' written in all caps and underlined twice. Remember that Seinfeld episode when Elaine sees her chart? Hahaha! I bet that's actually true.

Anyway, we discuss my eating and exercise habits in depth. He thinks I need to do more resistance training. Building muscle will amp up my metabolism better and more effectively than just cardio. He suggests I spend less time on cardio a day - 30-40 minutes a day should be fine as long as I push myself to the limit. I figure Misti's Zumba class on Mondays and Thursdays should meet that criteria with no problems. On other days, I'll throw in a short, intense cardio session. That gives me the time and freedom to concentrate on weights in the mornings at the Y. I'm excited about doing something different. I like weight training, so I'm excited to see the changes in my body as I start this new plan.

Now for nutrition. I need to try for about 1200 calories a day. That's doable, especially if I'm scaling down the cardio. I shouldn't be as hungry. My focus is complex carbs, lean proteins, lots of fruits and veggies. Dr. suggested the Body for Life plan as a guideline - six small meals a day (that is SO hard for me though) consisting of a carb balanced with a protein and veggies for 2-4 of the meals. Also doable. But - I have the flexibility of choosing to use Fat Smash, Two Day, Body for Life, or any other sensible menu plan. So let's get this party started. I go back in six weeks to see how much progress I'm making and also to address the rest of the issues we didn't get to yesterday.

Holy cow. I just made it through a doctors visit without hearing the words "if you would just lose weight....' even once. He was happy with my progress. Slap my face and color me stunned.

Random pop culture stuff

First of all - yay! Russell did NOT win the million on Survivor. Truth be told, I'm glad Parvarti didn't win either.

I can't decide who I hope wins The Biggest Loser this season. I like all the contestants (except for Melissa, who just bugs me) and can't wait to see what happens next week.

24 is getting GOOD you guys - despite the fact that I fell asleep watching it last night. Thank goodness for DVR.

I have no idea what's going on with Dancing with the Stars or American Idol this season. There's too much TV to watch, which is hilarious considering I've been complaining for the last four years (and rightly so) that there was nothing on TV. AFN tries hard, but just can't compete with the cable overload in the US.

The Apprentice is still going on? Really?!? Wow.

I've lost touch with Desperate Housewives and Grey's Anatomy. It is just me? The recaps on TWOP don't even capture my interest anymore. Sad.

Has anyone ever seen Billy the Exterminator? It's like nothing I've ever seen. I think that Billy the Exterminator should replace Dog the Bounty Hunter effective immediately.

If I never hear Lady Gaga's Bad Romance again, I'll be just fine. Of course, next week on Glee they are doing a tribute to Lady Gaga. Does anyone else think she has a serious case of manface?

OMG - the Pretty Wild chick got sent to prison for burglarizing those homes. Can someone please explain to me why I should feel bad for her in any way?!?

A'ight...that's all I've got for ya. I'm still playing catch up from living in Germany.

Peace out, yo!

Monday, May 17, 2010

Diet Diary Day - entry 10




Weight loss this week? Not so much. Mental attitude about weight loss this week? Really crappy. I really do try to only weigh once or twice a week. On weeks like this last week, when I'm super aware of everything I'm putting in my mouth and how much and with what intensity I'm working out, it's really hard to stay off the scale. This is a problem because some part of me needs to see the numbers getting lower to stay super motivated. Especially when there are Nutter Butter bites (which I bought thinking they would be a piece of cake to resist like the last two or three bags I brought into the house) in the pantry that I swear I can smell through the closed bag, closed pantry door, and upstairs around the corner when I'm lying in bed. No kidding. I even had a dream about eating them, and woke up in panic, because for a few seconds, I wasn't sure if it was a dream or not. There is something seriously wrong with me.

By Thursday, I was sure I'd at least lost a couple pounds. I was actually hungry most of the time last week, which is really unusual. So I got on the scale. Nada. Not even a pound. Not even ONE measly pound. I should have lost that much in sweat, if nothing else. I tried to shake it off, stay focused, not stray from the brown rice, steamed veggie path I was on. And I did okay - not great, but okay - until later that night, when I think I actually ate everything I could get my hands on except steamed veggies or brown rice.

Logically, I get that it's an ongoing process. I understand that for me, weight loss, healthy eating, and getting enough exercise are things that I'll always have to work on. On most days, I'm okay with that. It's worth it when the kids ask for fruit as a snack, or make healthy choices when we go out to eat. I know that my lifestyle changes are working out when I see them reflected in the kids. I still can't get them to eat a salad, but they'll pretty much eat anything that goes on a salad except for lettuce. I'm good with that.

But this week, I'm frustrated and disappointed that the number on the scale didn't move. I'm embarrassed that I went so easily back to my old habits of soothing myself with food. I'm mortified that I posted what I ate those days for the world to see. I'm grumpy that I've been hungry and sweaty all week and my upper arms and thighs are still just as jiggly. I kid you not, all I could think about Thursday and Friday was "I'm not losing weight eating well, so I might as well eat what I want." Not a productive way to look at this process.


Deep breath. I'm stepping back on the path. I have a doctor's appointment tomorrow, maybe I can get some help or answers there. We'll see. I know I didn't get to be this size overnight, so the weight won't come off overnight. Weeks like last week really do make me want to try out for the Biggest Loser. They really do. Because yes, I still have that much weight to lose.

Breakfast – none
Lunch - turkey burger on sandwich round w/low fat cheese and 1 tsp ketchup – 350 cal
Baked sweet potato fries 100 cal
Dinner – egg whites on ww sand round 180 cal
Snack – popcorn 100 cal
Almonds 200 cal
Cupcakes 220 cal
Exercise – arc trainer 11 min 154 cal
Zumba moderate 550 cal

Calories in: 1150
Calories burned 704

Sunday, May 16, 2010

No one is in control. Of Anything. Especially me.

What a week. This was S's first week in big girl underpants and while she wasn't nearly as excited about the possibilities as R and I were the beginning of the week, she has been doing great this weekend. You know, I read so many books about potty training - strategies to use, things to try, blah blah blah, but what I realized this weekend is that after you show your kids what to do, the rest is pretty much up to them, and that's the hardest part (at least for me).

Leave it to me to turn a week of potty training into a metaphor of life, but the more I tried to 'guide' S to what I thought she should do, the more she fought me. While she was willing to sit on the potty every hour at the beginning of the week, by Wednesday she pretty much had to be strong armed into it. On Friday, I gave the control back to her. Want to wear pull ups? No problem. Want to wear underpants? No problem. Need my help? I'm right here. Don't need it? I'll be near if you change your mind. It sounds so simple. Why was it so hard for me?

I've got great kids. Do they have tantrums over s'mores? Yep. Food on every possible surface of our house at one time or another? Yep. More dirty clothes than I could have imagined would ever be possible? Yep. Way, way, waaaaay too loud at times? Oh, heck yes! But tonight, when I was tucking them into bed, after realizing this week that my need to control things interferes more than it helps, I have hope that I haven't lost all self awareness and (hopefully) parental skill. We'll see.

Breakfast – none
Lunch - turkey burger on sandwich round w/low fat cheese and 1 tsp ketchup – 350 cal
Baked sweet potato fries 100 cal
Dinner – egg whites on sand round 180 cal
Snack – popcorn 100 cal
Almonds 200 cal
Cupcakes 220 cal

Exercise: 11 min on arctrainer 154 calories
60 min Zumba moderate 550 cal

Calories in: 1150 calories burned: 704

Food diary and exercise log update

Thank you to JK, who gently reminds me to follow through even when I don't want to.

Okay, here goes.

Breakfast – yogurt 110 cal
Egg McMuffin, no cheese 225 cal
Snack – low fat ice cream cone 150 cal
Grapes 35 cal
Cookies 200 cal
Lunch – sandwich turkey lf cheese 200 cal
Snack - Ice cream cone 130 cal
Dinner – egg white omelet w/parm 80 cal
Steamed veggies 60 cal
Snack – popcorn 150 cal
Turkey burger 375 cal
Lots of Cookies 500 cal

Intense Zumba - 650 cal burned

Totals: Calories in: 2215 cal burned: 650 cal

Breakfast – yogurt 110 cal
Lunch – chicken + biscuit 640 cal
Mac&cheese 350 cal
Dinner – grilled chicken salad 340 cal
Snack – popcorn 100 cal
Exercise – 15 min on bike 74 cal
35 min on elliptical 425 cal
60 min zumba (high intensity) 650 cal

Calories consumed: 1540 Calories burned: 1149

Breakfast – yogurt 110 cal
Lunch – cheese pizza and salad 700 cal
Dinner – fajitas, brown rice, beans 550 cal
Snack – pudding cup w/light cool whip 150 cal
Graham crackers 260 cal
Ice cream cone 130 cal

Exercise - day off

Calories consumed: 1900

Saturday, May 15, 2010

And the award goes to......

Since putting my blog out there on, I've come across some immensely talented, intelligent, hiliarious, and all around cool blogs and blog authors. (Also, feel free to vote for me often by clicking on the TopMommyBlog link on your right). I would just like the take the time to mention some of them right here, if you don't mind. If you do, just stop reading, mmmmkay?

The Journey Starts Write Here

The Stewart Family Chronicles

Please check them out if you get a chance.

But tonight I would like to give an award. Tonight's award goes to Free Therapy because until I found her blog, I really thought that the chances were mighty slim that anyone shared my bizarre sense of randomness and things that are FUNNY! So this one's for you, girl! Here is your award for General Awesomeness!

BTW: I got this graphic from, just so there are no little nasty copywright issues, cause I'm anal like that.

Friday, May 14, 2010

Emotions, Graham Crackers, Marshmallows, and Chocolate. In that order.

One of the things T's teacher suggested was an emotions board to help him identify through visual means what emotions he's feeling. I think the point behind this is to open a dialog to help him work through emotional situations verbally instead of him relying on physical ways (i.e. tantrums and massive meltdowns). During one of his speech therapy sessions, he and his therapist took the pictures. She sent us a black and white copy, and then followed them up with laminated colored copies.
T is such a ham. I could only get him to make silly faces, so it was great to see that he could project so many different feelings. And, as a bonus plan, S must walk up to the fridge and name the emotions (except for hurt, which she claims is tired) about 10 times a day. She's even started saying "frustrated" instead of angry or mad at times. Hilarious! Because the pictures are too awesome not to share, here you go:

And speaking of emotions...this morning T asked me if we could make s'mores again - only not melt the chocolate and marshmallow. Well, sure. But we didn't have chocolate or graham crackers, so I told him that S and I would go get some while he was in school and then we could make them this afternoon.

After school and after lunch we got the stuff out and I made T and S each a s'more. S picked hers apart, ate the chocolate, licked the marshmallow, nibbled one edge of the graham cracker and was done with it. T, on the other hand, went to smash it all together which made the graham cracker break, and he flipped out. He fell to the floor screaming and crying. I feared this was going to happen. I gently explained - or tried to - that the only way the s'more would smush together is if we melted the chocolate and marshmallow. Well! That was NOT going to work for T. I eventually got him to compromise to heat the chocolate just a bit, put the stuff on a smaller cracker, and I cut the marshmallow in half. It was passable until he bit into it, and then he flipped out again. At this point I'm not sure exactly what the problem was, other than the food wasn't doing what T thought it should. 10 minutes later I was no closer to figuring out why he was so upset or how to help. So, I just let him get it out of his system. S, meanwhile, was personally decorating the "How to Potty Train Your Child" book with an ink pen while peeing on the floor. Lovely. T takes a break from his fit and says, "S, you're supposed to do that in the potty. In the potttttttttttty." Sigh.

Thursday, May 13, 2010


I started this entry on Thursday night after I got back from Zumba and R and I watched our dvr'd Survivor episode. (BTW - dear any listening Deity: Please do NOT let Russell win. His crazy eyes and attitude towards women in general really creep me out.) After that, R went to bed and I started my daily blog entry.

I was having some trouble coming up with an entry that I was happy with. I was too tired to be any sort of humorous and there were cookies in the pantry chanting "EAT US NOW. EAT US NOW". I'm happy to say I did not eat them, but I thought about it aplenty.

Usually when I'm having trouble, I just start typing whatever's on my mind (which explains some of the random rambling, right?) and then I go back and do my best to edit it into something presentable. So I'm typing and I'm typing and I notice that blogger's auto save is having trouble. This is not good. I do not use 'proper' typing technique and I can't even begin to estimate how many times I've had a good portion of an entry accidentally erased because some part of my hand will hit the touchpad just right and it will highlight and delete much of my hard work. This is SO frustrating. By saving frequently, I can usually exit out quickly and go back to edit and most of what I typed will be there. Last night when the save function wasn't working, I thought - no problem, I'll just copy this and paste it to Word document or something and no harm, no foul. Yeah. Well. Unless there's something obvious I'm missing, blogger will not let you copy or cut so you can paste. So I lost my entire entry, which is why I'm posting this instead. And honestly, the only good thing I had to talk about was how this cute little pardner (no I didn't misspell that) had his eye on S at the preschool screening. She, true to the diva she is, never even noticed this cutie pie. But man, did he notice her! He'd sort of follow her where ever she went, but he never approached her or said a word. He had on blue jeans and cowboy boots, and he was a-to the-dorable. She's put a toy down and he's pick it up and just hold it, all the while looking at her with stars in his baby blue eyes. S was interested in trotting after the older girls and seeing what they were doing, so everyone else in the room might as well have been invisible. Cute! But also - the teenage years should be interesting indeed.

The screening went fine, I would be really surprised if they put her in the pre K program that T is in. I was also greatly amused at the amount of things she knows how to do that she would not do on command - like count, tell her last name, tell her age, say her ABC's, and twiddle her thumbs. I didn't even bother to tell them she couldn't do those things, but when we got home, I asked her to do some of them and she just looked at me and said flatly, 'No." ahhahahaaaaaaaaa. I'm adding future teachers to the list of people I have great sympathy for in dealing with the diva.

Food and exercise log:
Breakfast – yogurt 110 cal
Lunch – Qdoba naked ck taco salad 430 cal
McD’s vanilla ice cream cone 150 cal
Snack – graham crackers 130
Dinner- egg white omelet 60 cal
Reduced fat cheese 30 cal
Steamed veggies 80 cal
Snack – graham crackers 130 cal
Popcorn 200 cal
4 mini oreos, snickers bar 300 cal

45 min ArcTrainer 650 cal burned
Weights/strength training 20 min. 150 cal burned

Total calories eaten: 1620 Total calories burned: 800

Wednesday, May 12, 2010

Taking it easy

Today I'm just going to dazzle you with pictures. Enjoy!

Happy kids

Don't you think this looks a little like the Darth Vader of appliances?

What I ate yesterday:
Breakfast –yogurt 110 cal
Snack - almonds/honey nut cheerios 175 cal
Lunch – 1 cup brown rice 240 cal
Steamed broccoli 60 cal
Carrots 30 cal
Dinner – pbj sandwich round 225 cal
Snack – popcorn 100 cal
Yogurt 110 cal
Graham crackers 260 cal
Total: 1310 cal

Zumba 1 hour Calories burned 550-650

Tuesday, May 11, 2010

Today is Tuesday

T's class is working on learning the calendar - what the months of the year and days of the week are and what the current date is. So in the morning when I get T up, I'll say what the month, day, and date are. This morning marks a couple weeks that we've been doing this so T should be cluing in to some of it by now. But no. This morning -

Me: Today is Tuesday, May 11th.
T: Oh
Me: What day of the week is it?
T: Is today a school day?
Me: Yes. What day of week is it?
T: I don't know.
Me: I just said it. Can you try to remember?
T: Yeah.


Me: Do you remember what yesterday was?
T: Yeah, we didn't go swimming, but we went to the big gym.
Me: true, but what day was yesterday?
T: Ummmm...Sunday?
Me: No, Sunday was the day before yesterday. What day comes after Sunday?
T: Is it a school day?
Me: Yes.
T: Uh...I don't know.
Me: Do you remember the days of the week?
T: Days of the week?
Me: Yes. There are seven days of the week.
T: Right, right.
Me: So........
T: Can I watch cartoons?
Me: If you can tell me what day it is today.
T: (getting really frustrated) I just don't know it, OKAY?!
Me: Silly, I just told you a minute ago.
T: (sighing) Mom, you know I don't listen to you because you are always talking too much.
Me: (trying not to laugh) Ahhhh, I see.
T: So can I watch cartoons now?
Me: If you can tell me what day it is.
T: If it's not Sunday then I don't know.
Me: What are the days of the week, T?
T: Mom, you are making my brain hurt.
Me: Sunday, then Monday, then.......
T: I only like Sundays.
Me: Today is Tuesday, May 11th.
T: Okay. Tuesday, May 11th.
Me: So what is the day of the week?
T: I just told you. You have to pay attention.
Me: True. But since I forgot, could you please tell me again?
T: You need to look at the calendar. The calendar tells you what day it is. The calendar, Mom.
Me: You just said it.
T: Then why do I have to say it again?
Me: Just tell me, please.
T: It's Sunday.
Me: It's Tuesday.
T: Moooooooooooooom. This conversation is boring.

Okay then. Once I got the kids downstairs and through breakfast, we started the getting out the door dance. S refused to find shoes this morning. If she didn't have 10 pair scattered all around, I might -might - be more sympathetic to her "I can't find it" plight. We have this issue several times a week, so I was determined that today if she didn't find and put on her shoes herself, then she could just go without. When it was time to leave for school, S had no shoes on, so I put her in the car without them. When we got to school, I realized this was not my brightest idea because the parking lot was full of puddles. Way to teach who a lesson, Brooke?!? I carry her across the parking lot to the dry sidewalk, and we walk T to class. When we go in, she announces "I have no shoes!" I explain to Charlotte why she has no shoes and she laughs and says, "It doesn't look like it really matters to her a bit, does it?" No. No it didn't matter to her one bit. On the way home she says, "See, Mommy? I don't need shoes." Yeesh.

Food intake and exercise for Monday:

Yoplait fat free yogurt - 110 cal.
1/2 cup sliced strawberries - 40 cal
1 cup brown rice - 240 cal
1 cup steamed broccoli - 30
teaspoon low fat Parmesan and sprinkle of sliced almonds - @30 calories
Hostess 100 calorie cupcake pack (I only ate two of the three) - 67 calories
apple - 110 calories
pb&j on sandwich thin - 450 calories
popcorn - 80 calories
slice of pizza (I KNOW, okay?!?) 380 calories

35 min on ArcTrainer - 501 calories
1 hour high intensity Zumba - 550 calories
@25 min of strength training - 150 calories

Total calories consumed - 1537
Total calories burned -1201

Monday, May 10, 2010

Diet Diary Day - entry 9

Losing weight feels impossible some weeks. There are actually days when I feel like it's a minute to minute battle not to run to the grocery store and hoover down the entire chips and cookie aisle. Still holding steady on the weight, but this weekend I ate like a lumberjack, so I'm sure it will show up on the scale by next Saturday unless I can actually stick with the detox this week. Yep. I've decided to try that again. I'm halfway through day one, and while I already feel much better, I have a battle ahead of me to overcome the pizza, Hooters boneless wings, and Cold Stone Creamery cupcakes I ate over the weekend. Between those three items, that's got to be 5000 calories minimum. And last night after a weekend of overeating, I felt awful. Well, that's a given if I'm willing to do the detox voluntarily, right? UGH. I wanted to make cookies for the garbage guys who brought us a shiny new trashcan, but there's no way I can do that right now without eating the cookie dough, and the last thing I need right now is a big lump of fat and sugar. Even if there is oatmeal in there. I really wonder why it's so freakin' hard for some people (meaning me) to eat only when I'm hungry and to eat food that satisfies my nutritional needs instead of my emotional needs.

It occurred to me on Saturday that I've been gaining and re-losing the same 5 to 8 pounds since December. By now, I should be at least 15 to 20 lbs lighter than I am right now. It also makes me wonder if there isn't something else going on - maybe a thyroid or hormonal issue that might be slowing down my weight loss - cause I'm sure it has nothing to do with me eating too much *snort*. The ice thing actually was helpful last week, but the bottom line is that like it or not, I'm going to have to start keeping a food diary. I don't know why I don't do that already, because it's always helped any time I've kept one. Actually, that's not true. I do know why. Because I don't want to face the possible reality that I'm still eating too much, when I feel deprived in one way or another most days. I also have to keep in mind that I'm still losing inches, even though my weight is pretty stable. I put on a pair of pants on Saturday that I could actually pull on and off with ease without unbuttoning or unzipping. That's got to mean some sort of progress, right? Right??!

So okay. To hold myself accountable, this week at the bottom of my posts I'm going to list what I've eaten the day before (uh, that will begin tomorrow) in all it's horrifying honesty and how much I worked out. If I don't do something drastic and public, I fear that this time next year I'll be avoiding looking at my entire self in the mirror again and telling myself that I don't look THAT different having gained 40+ pounds. I never want to be there again. I never want to pick up a pair of pants that used to be too tight and wonder if I can make it into a tent for the kids. No - seriously. It makes me wish I'd saved my biggest pair. By the end of the week, I'll be back in the habit and can keep it up without the oversharing. Hold me accountable, please. I need it.

Sunday, May 9, 2010

I fell in love today

After an wonderful day that began with breakfast in bed and ended with not having to cook anything or do a single dish all day, the kids and I went to pick up dinner tonight at Pizza Hut. Since we got to the Hut before our order was ready, the kids and I headed to the nearest Moto Mart (which is just down the street from the Handee Mart and the Washee Washee - true story) so I could get some crushed ice and also provide drinks with the dinner I didn't have to cook.

Inside the Moto Mart was a policeman from the local police department as opposed to a non local police department natch, who was nice enough to talk to the kids when we were paying for drinks. T was really shy, but S? Chatty Cathy. Seriously. It went kind of like this: What's your name? Your shirt is blue. What's that? What's that? What's that? What you doing? You have blue eyes. I have blue eyes. This is my mommy. This is my best friend brother T. My daddy has blue eyes. My daddy is at our home. Hey! What is that? What does that do? I have a drink.

Naturally, by the time we got out of there and back to the big red Hutzaria, our food was ready so we picked it up and headed home. I decided to go a different way home than the way we got there, which meant we ended up going the entire length of Main Street in this little town. And, I hate to admit it, but it was love at first sight. I don't know why. Who can explain love? It's something about how so many people were out walking around, the mix of homes and businesses, the small town, homey feel of the place and some deep seated desire I have to live somewhere that I feel like I belong. And for whatever reason, I feel like I belong here. Plus, S has already made friends with local law enforcement. And who couldn't love a town that has a Handee Mart adjacent to the Washee Washee?

Saturday, May 8, 2010

What a great day

I love Saturdays. R and I ended up staying up later than we expected last night because the sheets for our bed were in a battle of the wills with the dryer. The dryer said 'dry!', the sheets said, 'I don't think so'. But I love sleeping on freshly washed sheets, so it was worth the wait. I guess that we could have just put a different set of sheets on the bed, but that would be the easy way, and then I'd have to fold the fitted sheet, which never folds neatly. I'm a control freak, I need even edges. Fitted sheets irk me.

For whatever blessed reason, R let me sleep in. When I woke up, I honestly thought it was 11 am, but it was only 9. Whew! We needed to go to the credit union and sign some paperwork and other than that, we had no real plans for today. Unlike last weekend, things went really smoothly at the credit union, and we were out of there in about a half hour. We decided to let the kids pick where we would eat lunch, so of course they picked Burger King. Before I complain about a meal consisting mainly of fat and salt and sugar, let me give kudos to BK. The apple fries are awesome, even if you don't use the caramel sauce you get with them (which is a little squirt of heaven). And they now offer fat free milk that both kids sucked down. Go figure.

The toys in the kids meals were from Iron Man 2, so that got T started on how much he wanted to see the movie. I didn't think he liked the first one all that much, so I was surprised. We had planned to take the kids to see it on Sunday, but ended up going today when the movie theater wasn't as crowded as we thought it would be. Even though we had all just eaten lunch, we ended up getting popcorn which we devoured before the movie was halfway over. I can't believe how much T is eating these days. I fully expect him to wake up one morning in the next two weeks the size of a 12 year old. S fell asleep during the movie, which was an impressive feat with all the noise and action that was happening. T, Mr. I don't know what quiet means, complained that the movie was too loud during the action sequences and too boring during the non action sequences. Sigh. Dude, just watch the movie, mmmmkay?

After the movie, we were on our way home when T asked if we could stop by Hardees and get something to eat. Seriously?!?! We managed to get him home without any meltdowns over food, but he kept asking for something to eat until we sat down for dinner around 5:15. I have no idea how we are going to feed this kid when he becomes a teenager.

Friday, May 7, 2010

Some of the things I forgot to mention

I've been on a graham cracker kick lately. The kids love them too, so we've eaten our way through a couple of boxes in the last couple weeks. The other day, T saw the graham crackers and asked if we could make s'mores. It's not that I'm against the idea of s'mores, but my kids + melted marshmallows AND melted chocolate does not equal a good idea. Ever.

But okay, I need to get past my 'don't make a mess' issues (mainly because it's a waste of time and energy and it's causing unnecessary stress on all of us). Aren't moments just like these what I want my kids to remember when they get older? Yes. Like the time my mom woke me up in the middle of the night and we took an impromptu trip to see my mom's best friend. I got to sit in the front seat and talk to my mom all the way to Virginia. I couldn't have been more than eight, but it's one of my best memories. So in the interest of lightening up and stepping out of my comfort zone, on Monday S and I went and bought chocolate so that we could make s'mores when T came home from school. Wisely, I resisted toasting the marshmallows because the only option I really had would have been the gas burners on the stove, and let's not even talk about the possibilities for disaster that would present. As it turns out, a few seconds in the microwave and BOOM! You've got puffy, melty lumps of 'mallow. Excellent!

So after overcoming all my reservations about messes, overdosing on sugar, and possible third degree burns from roasting marshmallows, we made the s'mores. The kids totally freaked out when they got marshmallow on them because 'it's too sticky'. T ate about four bites, S licked the marshmallow and chocolate off one side and they both pronounced it 'yucky'. Now, a year ago this would have likely irritated me. Monday? I just laughed and dabbed melted marshmallow on the end of their noses, which freaked them out (in a good way) and let them do it to me, which made them laugh. We threw away the s'mores, S ate the leftover chocolate, T ate the leftover marshmallow, and I ate the leftover graham crackers. Everyone was happy. And sticky. And the world didn't end. Hallelujah.

On Tuesday, S had a three year well baby visit. Tricare recently switched our pediatrician. I think I liked the old one better. I took T in on Friday to ask for a referral to a developmental pediatrician. I am hoping that by exhausting every available option, we can figure out what it is that he needs that he's not getting or how to modify behaviors that, at this point, just are. I feel like a piece of the puzzle is missing somehow, but that I don't know enough to figure it out on my own. After talking to Dr. C, I realize that it's going to be an uphill battle. Simply put, T's issues aren't severe enough (which is actually positive) for much medical intervention and since we are in the school system now, we ask for what we think we need for him, and the school system comes back with what they can offer. Uh, excuse me? At what point did someone think it would be a good idea to have the medical community, school system, and parents working against each other instead of with each other? How many kids are falling through the cracks because the parents don't realize or have enough knowledge to fight this battle? And how many great teachers have quit because of all the stress of demands and being second guessed and challenged? It's just a waste. So when I took S in for a 3 year well visit, I wasn't expecting much and I got even less. We were in there 10 minutes tops, he wasn't concerned about a diaper rash I have been trying to get rid of for weeks, and - like with T - we spent more time talking about BMI than anything else. What a crock.

Thursday, May 6, 2010

I guess it's a matter of perspective

Today was my day to volunteer in T's class this month. After all the negative reports over the last couple weeks, I was anxious to see what in the world was going on in there. Yesterday when I dropped T off, I had a chance to talk to Mr. Simon, T's case manager. Turns out that T is not the only one causing Mrs. B to reconsider her chosen profession. Okay I'm kidding about Mrs. B wanting to change professions, but you can tell she's getting frustrated. Today I think I got a clue as to why.

Mrs. B wasn't in class today, so the teacher's aide was in charge. We had a chance to chat, and she was telling me that next year, they are combining the mainstreamed and special needs classes. This means there will be about 30 kids in each class, with no additional help. Some of the special needs kids need an aide all their own - especially those kids that have extreme physical disabilities. It's sad and frustrating. So I can see why Mrs. B is not in the mood for some of the hijinks that go on on class, and why she's trying so hard to get the older pre K kids ready for kindergarten, which is now a completely different experience than when I was in kindergarten.

It seems like all the stuff I learned in kindergarten, T will have to know before he goes. Sheesh. And also, kindergarten has quiet time. I've thrown that into our schedules at home now, because that was one of the things T hated about staying at the CDC in Germany. T and I have a lot of work to do this summer, but at least that will help me to come up with interesting things to do in our summer schedule.

Being in class yesterday, though, T was really well behaved and (at least that I saw) wasn't reprimanded for anything. Actually, all the kids were really good. It continually surprises me how quiet the kids are expected to be. I think my kids are really loud (and they are, trust me), so it's really interesting to see how my definition of quiet is the pre k's definition of loud. Some of the students in Mr. Simon's class come over to Mrs. B's class for certain activities. Yesterday, I got to spend time with Joey, who is the sweetest kid but is a real handful. He puts everything into his mouth, so most of my morning was spent prying potential choking hazards out of his mouth. I wanted to laugh a couple times, but Joey needed NO encouragement. Then he tried to eat a book. His mom must have her hands FULL! But he gave me a huge hug before he left yesterday and I truly think my heart melted a bit. Which brings the question - why do I have so much patience with other kids but not my own?

Wednesday, May 5, 2010

Feliz Cinco de Mayo!

I used to be part of a management team for a Tex Mex restaurant and no, it wasn't Taco Bell. That was the first I'd ever heard of Cinco de Mayo. (I led a pretty sheltered life.) Even once I was aware of it, all it meant was Mexican food for lunch and a reason to drink Corona (like we needed a reason back then).

R and I have been interviewing babysitters and last night, Jennifer came over and watched the kids for a couple hours. She even lived to tell about it. Impressive. R and I ended up going out to dinner, where I celebrated Cinco de Mayo early and had a margarita and some sort of southwestern grilled chicken salad. It was yummy. But now I'm trying to decide if I should make a Mexican dish tonight. I'm thinking yes. Ever since T's last bout with a stomach virus, anything remotely taco like prompts him to tell you, "I can't eat tacos anymore. They make me throw up." So, I've gotten creative with my presentation of all foods Mexican in nature. So far, as long as I don't serve it up in a taco shell, he'll eat it with no complaint. I'm thinking we should have chicken enchilada casserole, which is simply chicken enchilada dinner ingredients put in a casserole dish and baked. So simple. So quick. So tasty. I can also sneak in brown rice because between the beans, meat, enchilada sauce and cheese, who can tell that it's just plain brown rice? I also leave out the tortillas, so other than what I'm sure is the fantastically high sodium content in the enchilada sauce, it's actually a pretty healthy meal. I think I'll steam some peas to go with it. Not that peas are particularly Mexican, but the kids will eat them and I'll free up some freezer space.

Okay then. I can't believe I just did a blog entry about what I'm having for dinner. Slow story day here at the Dahl household, I guess.

Oh - and happy birthday, Caitlin!!

Tuesday, May 4, 2010

The art of yelling

Neither of my parents were really yellers, so it really surprised me that I turned out to be one. After a lot of thinking, analyzing, and some really, really good therapy, I think I've figured it out. I yell when I feel like I'm not being heard. Which, if you have been reading my blog entries for any length of time, you know that's one of my biggest pet peeves and henceforth a trigger.

So, today it was almost time for T to come home from school. I was trying to convince S to go outside and ride her bike before it got really hot. She announced that she needed a diaper change. When I helped her to lie down on the floor, she put her hand under her body then pulled it back out covered in...well, you can imagine. Oh crap. Pardon the pun.

Trying to get S to hold still when she actually needs to is about as productive as sweeping a doorstep in the middle of a sandstorm. So, when I asked her very calmly to be really still, she immediately puts her hand on the carpet, on her leg, on her face, and in her hair. So guess what was on the carpet, on her leg, on her face and in her hair. Yep. With the damage already done, I tried to keep the damage to a minimum. I was not successful. What IS it with this kid and poop? I did not have these issues with T.

By the time I get her bottom cleaned up, the rest of her clothes off, and her hand mostly wiped off, I'm really irritated because I've been repeating, "Please hold still, please don't move" for like 5 minutes. I'm trying really hard not to raise my voice. Really, really hard. The garage door is open and the door leading into the garage is open since T should be home any second. I tell S that we need to go wash her hands with soap, and she heads into the kitchen to wash her hands. The step stool is in the bathroom, so I try to direct her there. She's having none of it, and she's standing naked in the doorway to the garage wanting to go outside. Nekkid. Not going to happen. Plus, there's poo in her hair and she's not exactly smelling like roses. We have a doctor's appointment this afternoon, and I'd really rather not take her smelling like that. So as I try to guide her to the bathroom, she begins to scream and cry meanwhile touching everything within her reach with her dirty hand. Really? REALLY?

I finally get her to the bathroom to help her wash her hands, and as I'm scrubbing her hands, she's still wailing like a tornado siren. Doors are still open. If anyone happened to walk in, they would see a naked, screaming, crying, smelly three year old, a very red faced and angry me, and a lot of uh...places that were in serious need of a Lysol wipe. I'm guessing that wouldn't look so great in a child services investigation.

T comes home in the middle of the ruckus, and immediately realizes he doesn't want any part of this. Smart kid. I ask S to go upstairs to the bathroom so I can give her a bath, and even though she does what I ask, my frustration level did not decrease. I've got a huge spot on the carpet to scrub and a bunch of places that S touched that still needed to be cleaned. When I walk into the bathroom five seconds after her, she's standing by the toilet which T forgot to flush this morning getting ready to reach into it.

And that was all she wrote folks. I yelled. I yelled at S for wanting to play in pee and for not holding still and I yelled at T for not flushing the toilet - again. It did not make me feel better. It did not improve my relations with S whatsoever. It was completely unproductive, and I didn't feel better at all. Sigh. However - 15 minutes later when she threw a fit over not getting to wear the shirt she wanted (which I was washing as we spoke) I did not yell. I just got up and walked away. S screamed for a few more minutes, then all was quiet. When I went to check on her, she had put herself to bed for a nap. Hmmmm...........

Monday, May 3, 2010

Diet Diary Day - entry 8

I've got nothin' for you today. Haven't lost any weight. Haven't gained any weight. My number on the scale, much like my attitude last week, was 'meh'. Of course, since I vowed to be honest, it's not like I'm exactly doing stellar with my eating. I came up with the idea last week of substituting pellet ice when I want to snack. I figure that's a great way to boost my water intake and curb my nighttime snacking since ice has no calories. The only problem with that is that I have to go and buy said pellet ice, which involves going to a convenience store that also has all kinds of fat and sugar for sale disguised as food. Food which I really would like to eat some days. Okay, most days.

I am still working out a lot. I'm in the gym 6 days a week for a minimum of an hour. Something's got to give soon, right? The good news is that under this layer of fat and loose skin is a pretty awesome body. Too bad I can't just suck out all the fat and tighten up all the loose skin. But I also know that if I don't have to work for a healthier weight and toned body that I won't appreciate it. I feel for my kids in this respect. I have to do everything the hard way, and so does R. I'm not sure T or S stand a chance of having an easy time of anything.

T had a doctor's appointment on Friday afternoon and his new physician mentioned we needed to watch his BMI. Dude - have you even LOOKED at my son? (The answer to that is no, he did not.) There's not a bit of extra flesh on him. The kid has a freakin' six pack for crying out loud. He's in the 95th percentile of height and weight for his age. Of course, when I told R about this he shrugged and said that according to the BMI charts, R is considered overweight. That makes me laugh. There is NO way R is overweight. Me thinks these doctors should look at the patients before they announce they are BMI fodder. It also makes me dread my physical on the 18th even though I'm 60+ pounds lighter than I was this time last year. UGH.

So, the goals for this week are to stop snacking after dinner, get to bed at a decent hour, continue with the workouts, ingest more pellet ice, and stay away from the ice cream section in the commissary. Totally doable.

Well that will teach me to show off for my husband

I woke up this morning at about 9:30, which is the latest I've slept in weeks. When I got out of bed and got into the shower, I noticed that the left side of my neck was really tight and uncomfortable. The first time I ever had a problem with it was right after I had T. Something about trying to cradle a 12 lb infant and coax them into breastfeeding did not agree with that particular muscle group. I even went to the doctor about it, since every time my Ranger candy wore off (Ranger candy is what R and his Airborne buddies called 800 mg Motrin), I would cry or swear in pain until I could take more. The doctor, bless her heart, gave me muscle relaxers but they still didn't work as well as Ranger candy. I think she might have given me serious narcotics if I had requested them because my appointment with her coincided with Mom leaving to go back home and an absolute hormonal meltdown. As I sobbed uncontrollably in her office insisting that I was okay and not really sad or depressed (and why on earth did she believe me, for crying out loud?!?!), she just patted me on my good shoulder and assured R that all would be okay, but to seek out medical attention if I didn't improve in a day or so. Well, sweetie. That all relies on the meds.

Anyway... a few weeks ago I did something to aggravate that particular set of muscles. While it's normally not anywhere near the pain level I had after T, it's beginning to really bother me and it's not going away. That can't be good. I guess this means weight training yesterday wasn't my brightest idea. Especially since I took some Advil prior to working out so I wasn't feeling any pain until I woke up this morning. But man, did I feel it then. When the shower didn't really help, I went downstairs to take more Advil and to get some sympathy. Interesting tidbit - only R cared that I was hurting. Doggone unfeeling rug rats. Harrumph.

Two hours later and the Advil was having no effect whatsoever. So what did we do? We went to the gym and worked out some more. In my favor, I just did cardio and tried really hard not to do anything to aggravate my neck further. Zumba had just started when R and I finished on the ellipticals, and I tried to talk him into going into class with me. He wasn't interested and it didn't seem fair to make him wait another hour to leave, so we grabbed the kids and headed to the commissary and then home.

The good side of this neck/shoulder pain? We ordered Chinese for dinner (and it was YUMMY) because I couldn't possibly cook in my condition. *snort*

Saturday, May 1, 2010


After thinking all day long that Friday was Saturday since R didn't have to work, it felt strange to wake up today and have it actually be Saturday. R and I talked about spending more time together and being workout buddies this week, so this morning he got up early to swim some laps and then we were going to do some cardio and weight lifting as soon as the childcare room opened.

Have I mentioned how much I dislike mornings? Okay, that's not exactly true. I don't dislike mornings, I dislike getting out of bed. I think it's my body's attempt at humor to deliver my best sleep right as I don't get to sleep any longer. Either that, or I'm so much of a procrastinator that it even applies to my sleep patterns. Either way, our plan to be at the gym around 8 am didn't happen. And yes, it was all my fault. We were interviewing a babysitter at 2, so I wanted to get all our running around done while we were out. The only problem with that was that I hadn't gotten anything together - like a grocery list or the stuff I wanted to mail or even a list of places we needed to go. By the time all that was done, it was 9 - but that meant the post office would be open. I suggested that we hit the dry cleaners first, then the post office, then the credit union, then the gym, then the commissary and be home in plenty of time to meet and interview the sitter. It's as easy as that, right?

Almost. Everything went well until we got to the credit union. We needed to talk to a customer service rep to sign some papers, and there was only one working. We waited almost an hour before the kids showed (understandable) signs of mutiny and decided that if we wanted to go to the gym, and we did, that we couldn't wait any longer. Off to the Y we go. Since R had already done cardio, I did a quick mile on the elliptical and then we hit the weights. R and I used to go to the gym together before he re-joined the military and before we had kids. I even used to get up at 5 am (not always willingly) to work out. That's how I knew for sure I could never join the military myself. If I'm up at 5 am and working out? He who yells at me will have an unpleasant day, followed my some unpleasant time of my own, I'd bet. But - even though we used to go to the gym together, we didn't work out together. He did his thing and I did mine. Today was different. We actually did the weights together and I got to show him that the time with Romi (the personal trainer I worked with in Germany) was well spent. We had a lot of fun, and I got the best weight workout in that I've had since Germany, I think. By the time we finished, it was after 12, and we got the kids, grabbed some lunch and headed home to meet the potential babysitter.

And then, all of a sudden, it was time to get the kids ready for bed. Where did the day go? I think that a lot at the end of the day. I'm guessing it will happen more often the older the kids get. Just another thing I should have listened to my parents about...the older you get, the quicker the time goes. Sigh....