12/29/12 G.L.A.D. Chronicles – Deciding My Course

I’m taking a few days to think about my goals for 2013. This came up yesterday during lunch with friends Tim and Joanne.

Writing is at the top of my list. I want to study and learn how to write fiction. As much as I love to read fiction, it irks the snot out of me that when I try to write it, my mind goes woefully blank. I have a few unconventional study guides to try to rectify this frustrating situation. I can blame it all on Nancy Drew. I passionately read every adventure of hers that existed when I was young. I thought if I couldn’t be her, I’d at least like to write great mysteries. The only mystery I seem to write so far is whether I’ll make any progress with losing weight. As reviewed in Mysteries Weekly: She’s up, she’s down, her roller coaster weight-loss effort reads like the never-ending nightmare of “Will Government Solve The Fiscal Crisis Before We All Go Over The Cliff?” Actually, I probably WILL lose weight and keep it off before government solves anything!

Back to writing, I feel it’s time for quiet and learning. Read, study, homework, whatever it takes to see if there’s an exciting mystery in me willing to come out. In the meantime, I’m reading so many good authors work now. Some of the best I’ve seen are my fellow writers at www.fanstory.com They’re miles better than what I’ve viewed in the bookstores and on my local library shelves. Maybe that’s one reason I’m not so sure ‘being published’ is any true measure of a writer’s worth. I see published books that aren’t worthy of using for toilet tissue and I read unpublished authors’ writing that absolutely blow me away.

Another goal is to continue the work I started in 2012 of putting myself first. That remains an alien and sometimes guilt-producing notion with me. However, as my personal clock ticks and time on Earth grows shorter, I am left with the knowledge that I don’t have forever to get this thing called life right. If I don’t work on it now, who says I’ll be here tomorrow or next year to make it a priority? I may never be a size twelve, calm, rational, island of tranquility… who am I kidding? I’ll NEVER be that! But I can at least move toward a serene nature and away from a squirrel-on-speed self!

Something interesting I’ve noticed since the last blog… I received various responses to last week’s piece about looking at myself without clothes on. Every response came from a woman either: younger, slimmer, prettier, etc. than me. None expressed being ready to look at themselves in this way (in the mirror buck naked). I find this interesting and a statement of the baggage women carry. Compared to them, I am a human who resembles a Caucasian Shrek. Yet I found no judgement. It wasn’t about how I looked cosmetically. It was about acceptance of who I am. The odd thing is, when I put clothes on again that night, the judgement began to seep right in. I’ve decided the only answer for me is to move to one of those “Nekky Colonies”. Not a nudist colony. This would be a “Nekky Shrekkies” oasis. We’d look like animated movie characters, hence we’d all look quite normal! I think I’m on to something. 🙂

wpid-5754027156_1c88c839b8_o_thumb.jpg                                                                                                     shrek


10/13/12 G.L.A.D. Chronicles, Week Two… and Soup In The Crock Pot!

Isn’t it a gorgeous day? The leaves are changing, fragrant coffee perks, the weather is decidedly sunny, crisp and warm. Just breathe it in for a second, take a mental snapshot for when the climate is colder and feeling less friendly!  

In my G.L.A.D. corner, it’s been a week of revelations and realizations. Still dealing with medical tests, I had a Holter heart monitor attached to my chest for forty-eight hours. If that wasn’t fun enough, add a Pulmonary Function Test on Monday and I was beginning to feel like the display model at a medical convention! The heart monitor revealed that I have abnormalities, but not enough to call for medication at this time. The PFT, which makes you feel a bit like the Big Bad Wolf trying to blow down the Three Little Pigs houses with all the huffing and puffing required, indicated that I have asthma and will benefit from an albuterol inhaler. I used an inhaler years ago when I was an avant outdoor exerciser, enjoying over one-hundred pounds less on my body. Sorry, just had a rosy memory of when I could walk a twelve-minute mile. I enjoyed the time at the pulmonary office, as I learned loads about asthma, breathing, and how to make my life easier. I have been so convinced that all of my problems are because I’m overweight (I’m sure a number of them are), to hear that the breathing issue is not related to my weight gave me a certain mental freedom. It’s as if… now I can get on with the life I’ve been trying to pursue this year. Exercise outdoors doesn’t have to be horror to avoid anymore.

Watch out walking trails, here I come!

I mentioned a discovery last week. I’ve finally been able to stop dousing myself with hateful, negative self-talk. This week I’ve pondered all the times I tried praying about it, asking God to help me stop loathing myself, but the negativity continued. What changed things was the time spent waiting for these tests to happen and the results. At the time, I did not know they’d come back with such positive results. I asked myself, “What if you’re dying, or have a bad disease to deal with; how do you want to spend your time?” and that’s when I finally became able to see what a total time waster self-loathing is. I started living each day as if it could truly be one of my last. I found out that I liked a lot of how I spent my time. The one thing that blared out was the self-negativity. The first time it started, I stopped, and said, “Really, this is how you want to talk to yourself? This is how you want to go out?” and I saw the absolute insanity of what I’d been doing.

Here’s the funny part of this story. As I said,  asking God never seemed to help. Last night, I was having that thought and a quiet voice inside of me said, “Who do you think set up those circumstances?” D’OH! God was there all the time, right in the middle of it. Who would know better than Him how hardheaded and resistant I am to change? Talk about a humbling moment. Once again, I have reason to thank God for His grace and knowing just the right way to reach me, when that seemed all but impossible.


One thing I want to do more of is home cooking. I love using my crock pot. There’s something so nice about coming home from work and smelling wonderful things bubbling away in the pot. I’ve acknowledged that I don’t care for cooking in the evening. For whatever reason, it doesn’t bother me at all to do the meal prep in the morning before I leave for my day job. So, work with your strengths. I asked friends this week what type of recipes they like to see. A few responded ‘meatless’. I might add that the few meatless ladies are slim, very pretty and have beautiful skin. I think that’s something all of us could enjoy a little more of, so I shall be happy to pop a meatless recipe in here and hope that some of their wonderful ways rub off on me!

One of my favorite cookbooks is “Fix -It and Forget-It Lightly” by Phyllis Pellman Good. I’ve used many of the recipes in this book. The one I’m showing here is new for me, so I invite any of you who might be interested, go to the grocery, get the ingredients and try it along with me. Please come back and tell me what you think of it. In future weeks, I’ll use a variety of meats and meatless recipes, maybe even a few for desserts. (Life is short, don’t forget dessert!) Feel free to say what type of recipes you’d like to see. I’d love for us all to get healthier together. Wow, I just looked at Amazon, you can get a used copy of this cookbook as cheaply as one shiny penny! Plus $3.99 shipping. That’s considerably less than I paid, but mine was bought at a school fundraiser a few years ago.

Oh, a D update: the Depression has definitely been snoozing contentedly this week, I’ve been continuing to Declutter my sanity room (where I pray, meditate, write, etc.) I had an extraordinary gift while decluttering. coming across two cards from my mom, who passed away in 2004. Seeing those cards made my insides light up like a lighthouse beacon and I hugged them to myself for a few minutes. Another precious discovery was a packet of letters from my niece Kelly, who died unexpectedly at the age of fourteen in 1986. I read the last letter from her, written a few months before her death, and a torrential downpour of tears ensued. It’s okay though. It feels like I have this lovely connection to Kelly that I’ll treat myself to, one letter at a time, every so often. Those two things alone have made the whole decluttering project worth it! Mind you, the cleared out space and fresh start are lovely too.

Now for that recipe…. White Bean and Barley Soup.

04/27/12 Sweating Inspiration!

What a great week it’s been! Getting outside everyday and sweating, I forgot how much enjoyment is in “glistening” with odoriferous perspiration! Walking has turned from torture a week ago into still huffing and puffing (fractionally less!), a lot of sweat and a feeling of accomplishment that moi hasn’t keeled over and is still going!

Two WordPress blogs have inspired me: Joyful Journey and Fabulous 50’s. They’ve managed to make fitness and perspiration seem desirable and not something to avoid at all costs! For that, I am grateful!

Joyful Journey talked about the website www.myfitnesspal.com  It’s got the nicest phone app that allows me to download my exercise, food, notes, lots of cool things. Very motivating and FREE! I love free lately. 🙂  It mimics the features of other well-known sites that do not offer such services for free and it’s extremely easy to use on my Motorola Droid. Gotta love that, no notebooks to tote around for journals, food diaries, whatever.

I can’t get away from it. Over at Facebook, different friends are writing about training for events and the accomplishment they feel moving from walking to running and busting a move in general. Emily and her mom Joanne lead the pack of inspiring women in their posts about “Girls on the Run.”

My brother Jon and his wife Marcia are in on the act. During the last family gathering at Easter, unlike me, they didn’t look like they’d been up close and personal with an air hose planted up their bums! I can’t hiss at them, as I know they work out and don’t eat like rebellious children.

My book club friend Deb, definitely a long cool woman with a blonde mane, also inspires me to move. She’s about as slim as they come and breaks a sweat regularly.

Obviously, I can’t beat them, so I wave the love seat lizard’s white flag.

I’m ready to join them, call Cecil B. DeMille and tell him “I’m ready for my glistening close up, Mr. DeMille!”

Drops of sweat

Drops of sweat (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

04/23/12 Walking Through The Park One Day

Big Bad Wolf

Big Bad Wolf (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

I took the plunge yesterday and headed to Veteran’s Park. Meeting a friend after church, we walked the track for two miles. Truthfully, not a pretty sight! This is the first real walk I’ve taken in a couple of years, I think.

The lungs can get very lazy from non-use over such a period. Each time we hit the slight upgrade of the track, I believe other walkers thought a delirious female version of The Big Bad Wolf was lurking in the park! I’m glad no little piggies were around, they would have squealed all the way home. 🙂

It’s interesting to note that in the past, I didn’t like walking with other people at all. Moi was very content being an island unto herself. Now I appreciate the company of others. It made me get my tail out there when I’m sure I’d rather have been at home reading a good book.

However, I don’t like that my breathing is so compromised lately. Funny how you take breathing for granted until it becomes a chore. Then one learns to appreciate it for the gift it truly is. I want it back.

I’m willing to huff and puff until I walk this girth off. Please warn any nearby piggies!

8/23/11 Confessions Of A Couch Potato

It’s been such a busy few weeks. School started for my son on August 16th. He goes to school on the east side. It’s been a continuation of a sobering experience to drive over there and see all of the fit people out jogging, walking, enjoying life. The east side seems to emanate energy and vitality. I don’t feel that vibe on the west side. I wondered if I lived over there, would I still be the couch potato that I have become over the past decade?

June 2010 at 258 lbs.

I USED to work out… a lot…. and keep my body not exactly thin, but at a much healthier weight. About 70 lbs less than I’m carrying now. I ponder and ponder this, but can not deduce why I can’t stick to working out and eating right.

I’ll draw up plans for a workout schedule, join Weight Watchers (repeatedly), go to the store and load my cart with healthy foods, write down all of my toxic emotions in a journal. Things seem to go better for a while, and then, just like the sober alcoholic who plays Russian Roulette and decides he can take “just one drink”, I decide I can do it on my own, I don’t need the weight loss meetings, or to work out this week, or I convince myself that two cartons of Hostess love in a box won’t really hurt (especially if I keep them hidden and no one in the house sees them).

WHY does this one area of my life confound me so?

I have supportive friends and family, I have way expensive walking shoes and countless pedometers to track my steps, enough exercise DVDs and videotapes to stock my own store…. yet I can’t stick to it.

The first thing I kid myself into/out of is sleep. I reason to myself that I can get by on 5 or 6 hours of sleep. I’ve never been able to put the proper value on enough sleep for myself. Late evening is the only time I seem to be able to read a good book, waste countless minutes/hours playing games on my smart phone, check my email in case Ed McMahon’s trying to reach me with that elusive million dollar check.

This is one of those times I wish I had a legion of dedicated readers who could at least chime in with their two cents regarding treating yourself as well as you try to treat everyone else.

I’m open to all thoughts. PLEASE chime in.