Monday, August 27, 2012


If time went any faster, it would be warp speed. My apologies for my absence over the last couple weeks. There have been many reasons, most importantly I had to get this little lady off to college.
She's now safely tucked into her dorm with enough clothing to outfit the entire hall. My little girl sure is growing up fast. Today she declared a double major in pre-law and English education. I know whatever she puts her mind to will be a success. Hugs and kisses to my baby girl. I'm going to miss her lots.

Also, confession time. I fell face first off the wagon for a bit there. Well, maybe that's a little dramatic, but portions and "cheats" were starting to creep in a little larger and more frequently for a while. I only gained a pound and a half, but it's time to put a stop to the madness and get back on track. All in all, I'm still down a little over 30 lbs. Today was the official start of a new dietbet, this time, I'm the leader. I think that's going to be an important source of accountability for me. I'm doing week one of South Beach again to jump start things and so far so good today. I had plain Greek yogurt for breakfast because it was the item closest to the front of the fridge as I rushed out the door; I don't recommend it. It was pretty tart and blah without fruit. For a snack I had a little low fat cheese, then lunch was cauliflower soup (delicious and creamy with scant diary, see recipe below, sort of cream of potato flavor) and a nice big salad. Oh and sugar-free lime Jell-o. I'm really excited that soup time has returned. It really helps keep me feeling satisfied, it's cheap, and yummy. I had an event at work until 6 with lots of tempting appetizers, but I walked away from them all. I definitely have much better control if I don't start at all. I had some more soup when I got home. I need to get so more veg in before the day is done, so I'll probably make another salad in a while. I'm not hungry at the moment.

"Cream" of Cauliflower Soup
(From the South Beach Supercharged book)
1 medium onion
1 tbsp olive oil
1 head of cauliflower
4 c of low-sodium chicken stock
1/4 c of light sour cream
salt & pepper to taste
 shredded parmesan and romano cheese for garnish  

Saute onion in olive oil for about 5 minutes until onion softens. Add chopped cauliflower, saute another 5 minutes. Add chicken stock and cover. Simmer until cauliflower is easily smooshed with a fork. Process in a food processor or blender, pulsing until the soup is creamy and combined. Add sour cream. Mix again. All done! Serve with shredded cheese as a garnish. I bet scallions would be a nice addition also. 
So damned good.

I don't know exactly what the calories are for this, but I'm guessing you get a good 4-6 servings depending on the size of the bowl. It's not going to break the calorie bank though. 

In other news, graduate school classes start up for me on Wednesday. I need to be extra careful in planning so I don't find myself snarfing something from the vending machine. I need to figure out something quick and tasty to eat after work, before class. Thankfully my job and my classes are at the same location so I'll be able to use most of the hour before class to enjoy a healthy dinner. 

What else? I think know my dog has fleas, so he needs a trip to the groomer which he hates; I can expect the cold shoulder from him for about a month after. I'm dejunking the entire house drawer by drawer, purging feels good. The Solar Overlord has finally had mercy on us, so we can enjoy the outdoors again (with liberal doses of Zyrtec, thankyouverymuch ragweed, you jerk). I started watching Forks Over Knives again today at lunch which really has me thinking about alternatives to meat that are plant-based. I'm not able to eat soy because I have a thyroid condition (soy can suppress thyroid function), so I'm trying to figure out what would be a good replacement. Beans maybe? I don't think I'll ever go totally vegetarian, but I do want to cut back on the animal products. Other than that, not much else is new. I'll be back soon, promise!

Saturday, August 11, 2012

Crazy Days of Summer with Bonus Mini-Rant

Time is flying. I can't believe how fast the summer has gone. I can't believe it's been almost two weeks since my last post. There have been many teeny victories along the way. On the weight loss end of things, progress has been slow, steady, but very slow. I've decided to do week one of South Beach again to get a handle on my cravings and jump start things a bit. There is only about a week left in the diet bet and I want to win! As of now, I've lost about 2 pounds in the past two to three weeks. Not exactly earth shattering progress. Better than weight gain though. We'll chalk it up to a teeny victory! 

Exercise has been really pitiful. My excuse has been the heat. The real truth is probably closer to heat + lethargy. Tomorrow I'm walking with my friend Amber, who is a fellow "loser" and is great about keeping up with exercise. Having a commitment will keep me on track and get this train rolling again. I'm going to do some walking at lunch this week too provided it's not too terribly hot. Otherwise, I'll work out at the gym or walk the pooch at the park in the evening after dinner. One of my students who is a premed for podiatry met me this week and did an analysis of my athletic shoes (she's also a long-time employee of Fleet Feet) and helped me get things properly laced for my feet. The good news is that I don't have any glaring problems. The odd news is that my heel strike is to the inside which explains why my shoes are always worn on the inside portion of the heel first. She said that my stride is nice and even though, so it's no biggee except that I'll go through shoes faster. In a few weeks I'm going to go get some new kicks from the place she works. Apparently the (ugly) ones I have now are more of a "fashion" shoe than a real workout shoe and she says that if I get something with better cushion I'll have less joint pain in the long run. Well, okey-doke, I like that!

I got my panties in a bunch earlier this week. A woman I am acquainted with made a rude comment on Facebook in response to an article. The comment she left was, "she's probably fat and in tact". Well, that's nice, isn't it?This got me really thinking about how much I really don't like that in addition to the public gay-bashing that's been going around lately that it's still totally acceptable to bash someone for their appearance. I made a comment back to the girl that was sort of lighthearted, "Hey, don't hate on the fatties, I'm one and I'm adorable" hoping to call her attention to the jerkiness of it all but still keeping it somewhat friendly. Her reply was something like, "don't take it personally." Ugh. How can I not? You called someone fat as an insult, I'm overweight, and and implied that because of it she's so gross no one would have sex with her. While I think the author of the article was a jerk too, that kind of banter is pointless and unintelligent. First of all, you just never know why someone is the way they are and making cheap shots about their appearance is immature and ignorant. If she was a person of color or disabled would it be okay to criticize them for it? Of course not. Secondly, suppose said author is a virgin, that's none of anybody's business, and holy crap, who cares? It's not my vagina. Maybe she's picky and that's not a crime. When are women going to stop bashing other women for their appearance and their rumored sex lives or lack of it? Can't we do better than that? My goodness, how many women do we know who have suffered emotionally because they didn't live up to cultural ideals? Oh, I dunno, just about all of us? How many of these women were perfectly fine and beautiful exactly as they are? All of them. Every single last one of them. Can we please stop measuring the worth of a person based on their outside package? I would like to lose weight, yes, but it's to improve my health. Are there things I'd like to have look different than they do right this minute? Sure, but I'm not less of a person because I have some jiggle on my thighs or a wobbly belly. Can we please focus on health and character development? PLEASE! Bigotry is all its forms is just ugly. /rant

The remaining news will be via pictures. :)  

Our first crook neck squash! Kinda looks like a drumstick, but did not taste like chicken at all.

I've been prepping a week's worth of salad on Sundays which has been working out GREAT and is a big money saver. A salad on campus is about $6/day. If I make and take it's under $10 for the whole week. I use store-bought spinach as the base then start piling on the veggies. From our garden - peppers, radishes, pickled banana peppers, radishes, and yellow pear tomatoes. I also pile on some chopped grilled chicken that I cook on the George Foreman grill and top with Greek Seasoning. It's yummy and really satisfying for lunch! 

Mid-week haul from the garden. It's amazing how much a handful of plants can produce.

Coworker tomatoes! My buddy, Elisa, has been bringing in beautiful slicing tomatoes and they have been amazing and sincerely appreciated. From some silly reason we forgot to plant the big guys and just have teeny 'maters in the garden this year.

This map was from my camping trip planning. I'd show you pictures of our trip, but it was a flop and we got rained out and had to head back home before any fun was had. We arrived after dark, put up tents in the dark, then woke to thunder and lightening at 6:30 a.m. Because that wasn't enough fun, my car also decided to die exactly 2.1 miles from my house.  Sigh.
This pretty girl is still up for adoption. She's a big fan of The Bangles and wants to walk like an Egyptian.

This mock cable cowl has been on my needles for a year. I finally finished it!
This is my girl, Singer. She's been mostly collecting dust, but I finally gave her a nice cleaning and got some sewing done. I had a custom collar order that I finished and delivered and I have a custom bag order up next. 

This is me waiting for the bus. Which, for the record isn't so terrible really. It's nice to not have to think about driving sometimes and the people-watching is pretty good. I went almost a week without my beautiful, slightly dinged and dented, 1998 Honda Civic. She's back in action now after $500 worth of repairs. Ugh. 

In a fit of frustration I cut bangs this morning. I'm sick of trying  to pin them out of my face. Also, this is  picture of me and my girl cuddled up on the couch. She's going away to college in 12 days. sniff sniff. I've been making her cuddle as often as possible, which is next to never since she's always out with her friends. I'm really going to miss her. I really does seem not that long ago that she was getting ready for her first day of kindergarten. 
The next week and a half will be busy busy with preparations for Alli going to school and the usual responsibilities. I'm going to do my best to stay organized and on track so I have the energy to tackle it all. I hope all is well in your world and you're feeling fine and dandy!