Wednesday, December 22, 2010

Chocolate Covered Cherries

This is not a post about eating. It is post about grieving. Every year all my life chocolate covered cherries were under the tree for my father. We gave them to him when we were kids, and then my kids gave them to him. Every single year of my entire life. This year I noticed them first when I was waiting in a long line at the grocery store just before Thanksgiving. Then as Christmas approached and I was doing my shopping and thinking of what to get for who, I could not imagine Christmas without having a gift for my father. There are so many fond memories of him and Christmas. I could not imagine watching It's a Wonderful Life - that was his all time favorite Christmas movie and we watched it every Christmas with him, even in the later stages of his Alzhiemer's. I finally started crying last Sunday on the way to the mall. I had bought a box of chocolate covered cherries to put under the tree in his memory.

I decided that I would go to his grave and bring a wreath, and the chocolate covered cherries and have one with him. I had not been to the grave since they set the tombstone. So I went and picked out a pretty wreath with silver ribbons. Silver Bells is one of the carols I remember him singing. We have a recording of him playing the guitar and singing it. He would play guitar and record us singing carols when we were kids. We still listen to those recordings sometimes at Christmas. My brother keeps the archives of all the family recordings.

I never visited a grave before. It was comforting to decorate it and to talk to him and I even sang some of Silver Bells. It was cold. I cried but I felt like I had spent some of my Christmas with him. I felt like I included him in my life.

I have been kind of up and down. My weight is at my pre Thanksgiving weight and that is good. I am not that intersted in food and the Christmas Eve and Christmas day food will be easier and safer than Thanksgiving. I am having the family at my house both days. It stresses me a bit but then I am also excited, too. I am ignoring the rental house situation. I got it ready to show and already have one prospect that wants to move in the first of February. I will get back to that next week.

I wanted to check in and wish anyone still reading my bog a very Merry Christmas and a Happy New Year!!

Tuesday, December 7, 2010


I ate at least three servings of triscuit thin crisps tonight and I don't know how many Hershey peppermint kisses. I have to be honest and accountable. This is not good. I am trying so hard to keep my spirits up and my stress level down about that rental property fiasco. Last night I went and looked at it. Stuff all over the place. Trash, bags of it in the shed. Debris and personal items strewn about. The carpet looks awful. Walls with smudges, filthy toilets, and so on. I want to be an optimist and just let it roll off. I can do that most of the time but I have moments where I think I just cannot do this. I have to pay their unpaid trash bill or the trash company will never allow trash pickup there again. There's some really weird trash monopoly situation in that county. I have to pay their unpaid sewer bills. This adds to already a couple of hundred dollars. I don't want to dwell on it. I am going to stop talking about it. My point here is that I keep making all this effort to be upbeat about it but I came home and hit the crackers and kisses. Like the underlying stress jumped out and grabbed for the food. I am responsible for this eating episode and I have to be extra vigilant during this potentially stressful time.

I have been very cheerful and happy around the house with the kids, and I have been chipping away steadily at that laundry pile and other little areas of clutter. I have energy and I even find myself liking my job. I have a deep appreciation for my job today. I have a deep appreciation for my life today. Being alive. I have been reading about Elizabeth Edward's passing and thinking to myself, what if this was my last day and I spent it obsessing over that rental property situation? I have no time to waste. I only need to think about it when I am doing a task that relates to it. When the task is finished, I can move on. I can do my tasks with joy. The joy of being alive and able to do these things. I appreciate the fact that I was able to move out here in spite of still owning that house in the old neighborhood and put the kids in a better school and living situation. It is worth the whole rental stuff, and I am going to keep on with it as long as necessary. I can emotionally detach and treat is like a business. Think of the workout I will get cleaning up the place on Saturday. I can't pay my next year's gym fee due to this financial interruption so I will have to find other ways to work out.

More will be revealed.

Okay time for sleep. The eating episode is over. I forgive myself and move on.

Sunday, December 5, 2010

Is it ever enough?

I was talking to a good friend yesterday and I told her what I had done so far that day, commenting that I felt like I had not accomplished anything. She told me that it sounded like I had done many things already and that every time we talk I am always doing many things. It was one of those moments where I realized something about myself that I am not sure I ever knew before. I know I have the "not good enough" concept about myself lurking in the back of my mind waiting to pounce on any flaw or mistake. But what I see now is that I never think I DO enough. I am always feeling unaccomplished like there is so much left to do, or worse lately, that this is it, and I am NEVER going to DO anything, its all over, etc.

I have had the feeling of lack, that's what I call it, about food, money, love, etc. - like there is never going to be enough, I can't get enough, I don't have enough, and so on. I believe that leads to hoarding, overeating, etc. but this lack feeling applied to DOING - how does it impact me? It leads to feeling like a failure. I can feel overwhelmed and inadequate. I am going to address this feeling and how it effects me. It can also lead to the what's the use, why don't I just sit and eat philosophy. All stress can lead me to eat, I already know that.

So, I want to visualize what would be ENOUGH doing. Does my house need to be perfectly clean? All work at the office finished? My weight at a normal BMI? One 45 or longer exercise session per day? Eating on plan all day? Maybe I need to set some minimum standards for some of these things.

This weekend I started clearing out this massive pile of clothes in my room, sorting what can go, what stays and laundering what needs to be washed. It is a BIG project. It grows as I work at it. I want to pitch it all and frankly I believe I'd never miss it if I did.

I lost another Thanksgiving pound. I am still ticked off about those. But glad I am somewhat back on track. I have not eaten in front of the TV. I watched a movie last night and I realized that If I watched a movie each night I would not eat in the evening. I like having a NO EATING zone. In fact, maybe I could only eat at the table (what a concept) and then everywhere else would be a no eating zone. I may try that after the TV experiment, branch it out. Overeating is most likely related to eating everywhere while doing everything. If eating was just eating at the table would I eat less? I believe so. Maybe I can find that out.

UPDATE - My tenants did not contact me yet about the rent and I got a funny feeling so I looked them up on facebook. They are in Indiana staying in a hotel, working jobs and house hunting. The whole story is chronicled in their facebook posts. They quite their jobs on Nov 8th and she got a job up in Indiana and took a bus, then he came up after Thanksgiving. They left their kids with relatives and my house is locked and their stuff is still in it. I doubt I see anymore money and I guess I will call a lawyer tomorrow. This was a huge shock for me but I am determined not to let it bring me down. It is a huge financial strain among other things but I was just climbing out of that awful depression and I refuse to let this take me back down. I am having steamed veggies (not in front of the tv) and we are decorating the tree. I may not be able to spend much money this year for presents but I am going to keep a cheerful outlook for me and my kids and be merry all the same. Here we go again, but this time around I am more seasoned, educated and experienced about the whole house thing. I just wish,....

Friday, December 3, 2010


My weight is stagnant and I regret Thanksgiving now because I was progressing. Phooey. But I am not giving up, I am eating sanely and exercising and all that jazz. And being patient. And forgiving myself and encouraging myself and others who are on the same journey. Today I made a tastey salmon salad for lunch. Trying to get more salmon in the diet.

I also signed up for a "study" where we try and stick with one changed behavior for two weeks. My behavior change is not eating in front of the TV. Very good one for me because even though I do not watch lots of TV, I usually eat when I do. Also, I watch more TV when I eat in front of it, and I eat more when I eat in front of the TV. I like movies. I decided that I will drink hot tea if I want something. I have not watched any TV since I started this. Too funny.

More will be revealed.

Thursday, December 2, 2010

Steamed Veggies and other delights

I love steamed veggies. I especially enjoy broccoli with fresh ground pepper and a sprinkle of Parmesan cheese or low fat mozzarella. I have been mixing in celery and a few baby carrots the past few evenings. I also used up all the leftovers from the veggie dip tray on Thanksgiving for my steamed mix. I am focusing on the goodness of whole foods. I want to make sure I enjoy what I eat.

I also like frozen blueberries. Just small amount of large curd cottage cheese mixed in with a cup of frozen blueberries is a yummy frozen dessert for me. But it is full of nutrition. And guilt free. For my morning coffee indulgence I have been using seasonal coffee grounds like pumpkin spice, eggnog and peppermint with a tablespoon of half and half. Then I sprinkle in some spices. It makes a warm morning treat with no more than about 20-25 calories. I also have been enjoying sugar plum spice tea - a seasonal tea blend with no calories or caffeine. Also have some black cherry tea on hand at work for a rich fruity flavor in the afternoon. I love warm drinks. They are soothing. I am finding "comforts" without the calories.

I have settled into better eating after my holiday splurges. I decided to be more prudent at Christmas and have a menu that is easier to live with like a big salad and some shrimp. I still have another turkey to cook but the sides will be different. I just don't like taking a whole week to recover after a few days of eating outside of my boundaries.

I toyed with joining weight watchers but I hate when I spend money and don't follow a plan. Not that I wouldn't but this past year I spend some money on another program and ended up not doing it at all and gaining weight instead. I lost weight before by being flexible but sticking to some rules that I can adjust if need be. Weight watchers looks somewhat flexible and I like the idea of going to a meeting and weighing in. So I am still not finished toying with the idea yet.

More will be revealed