Monday, January 31, 2011

A Daily Observance

Wow. I'm late. This is what happened with my other blog, too. I would forget to post and then things would slide down into a spiral of neglect. I told myself I would try very hard not to do that this time, but it seems that this is second nature.

I have two questions which will probably never be answered - why do my children sleep later when it's snowing? Is this a genetic human trait? I also sleep later when it snows and am extremely reluctant to get out of bed. Are we supposed to hibernate?

And my second question - why do cereals aimed to get kids attention flavored with styrofoam? I ate Alphabits this morning and they were absolutely awful, enough so that I threw the entire box away. Sintu liked them, but Sintu will eat absolutely anything, so his opinion doesn't count in this case.

My darling daughter lost her first tooth on Saturday and was terribly excited about the tooth fairy coming for a visit. Of course, thanks to the movies, she thinks the tooth fairy is the ROCK in hockey clothing, but that's okay! She got a silver dollar for her tooth and couldn't be prouder.

We are working on refinancing our house and are supposed to close in a few weeks. We had the appraisal today and she was very nice - I'd recommend her. I had questions about our first appraisal, when we started trying this months ago, but she explained everything to me patiently (and apologized for getting my name wrong) so that did wonders. This refinance won't lower our payments by much, but it will lock us into a fixed rate 30 year mortgage instead of the 10 year interest only we have right now, which is a great thing. We love our house, we want to stay here.

In other news, there's not much to say. Things are going pretty well around the workplace. I joined up with the biggest loser challenge for Minnesota, but I haven't lost any weight yet. I've done a lot of exercise and I DID record all my points this week, which I feel quite proud of, but no lost weight as of yet. It'll come, right? I just have to be positive.

Sunday, January 16, 2011

WMDs in Human Suits

My children are weapons of mass destruction. It amazes me that they manage to pull EVERYTHING out of the play bin in just under 30 seconds and then blame each other for doing it. It's like Hurrican Dagny and Typhon Sintu in here sometimes! Not that any self-respecting weatherman would ever name a storm after my kids (gotta stick to the regular names), but it does seem that way sometimes.

Add in the furry little bundle of C4 named Roscoe and we've got a regular job for the A-Team in our house. If the A-Team cleaned toilets, floors, and did laundry anyway. Hannibal, where are you when I need you? Murdock can babysit! I think they'd get on great!

I understand that tantrums are normal. I also understand that teenagers are like unstable, weapons-grade plutonium and that I will have TWO entering puberty at mostly the same time, but right now it amazes me just how insane things can get around here!

However, Sintu today said "Mommy, I need to show you something" and led me into his room. "Mommy, sit on my bed for a minute, okay? I have something cool to show you."

Keep in mind, out in the hallway he dropped a blue plastic vase and out fell a pink stuffed bunny. I had no idea this was important until right now.

"Abracadabra!" he shouts gleefully, overturning the vase and (once again) dumping out the rabbit. "See?" How cute is that? Makes all the tantrums worthwhile, doesn't it?

As to the weight loss - I'm not doing too badly with the water, drinking as much as I should every day. And I am still addicted to spinach and have found a new vice: Laughing Cow spreadable cheese! The light version is only 35 calories per wedge and it's quite tasty with lowfat wheat thins, which are some of my favorite crackers. Unfortunately, when I start eating them, I never manage to stick to just one serving. I always end up munching for much longer than I should. That's my goal for next week - portion sizes. I need to stick with it and actually write in my weight watchers journal, which I have been horrid at recently.

However, on the shopping front (borderline shopaholic here), I've done quite well. I took all my credit cards out of my wallet and am only going to spend money that I HAVE and not money that I might have. I went to TWO sales this week and didn't buy very much at either place, spending about $20 dollars for each one. I have an allowance of $100 per month and that's not bad! The rest can be coffees and an occasional lunch and (gasp) maybe savings?

Speaking of savings, I have decided that we need to transfer money into the kids' savings account each month so that they have something there when they need it. I feel pretty good about this.

Wednesday, January 12, 2011

Is It Really Worth It?

Yes, yes it is. So over the past week with all this water drinking, I have lost about 5 pounds altogether. Considering how bummed I was feeling earlier, this is fantastic! Now, if I could stick with eating healthier foods, I would be doing even better!

Last night, in the interest of time, I warmed up pierogies from the freezer because it was too cold to grill (imagine that) the fish we had thawed. Tonight, we'll do the fish and I am hoping that I manage to control myself enough to not eat at Confirmation so I can eat healthy food when I return home - this is better for me, so cross your fingers. I'll just have to think good thoughts.

And so I come to my next question about worth - what should people really be paying for health insurance? We figured that about $6000 is taken out of Marc's check a year to pay for our health insurance, which has a $6000 out of pocket for the family ($1500 per individual, $3000 deductible for family, $6000 before expenses are covered). That means we have to spend $12,000 before our insurance really kicks in.

Seriously? That's more than my mortgage and is it really worth it in the long run? I'd love to say yes, but lately I've had doubts about that. Money is money and perhaps we would be doing better in the long run to save that $12,000 into an account that we could use if it were needed, rather than just spend it on some company who is only in it for the profits.

But that's a soapbox for another day.

Monday, January 10, 2011

Keith Olbermann

Keith Olbermann has some words to say and it is everything that I wanted to, only said with more passion and more reason than anything I could say myself.

Listen to Keith.

We Live in MN - Redux.

Right. It's snowing again. A LOT of snow. And it just keeps coming. It's light and fluffy enough, and quite lovely, but if the wind picks up, we're all screwed. And what do we have around here in great abundance? Wind. So we'll see what tomorrow will bring.

School was closed today because of lack of plowing, but the kids really wanted to go to daycare, so I opened the library for four hours this afternoon - it'll let us get delivery done, shelving, and some projects. However, I have had to shovel the walkway TWICE and am now wondering why I bothered to work out this morning at all.

Ha. I did, though. I used the exercise bike at home and did intervals while the kids watched Hotel For Dogs, which is a really cute movie. Dagny got very upset when the siblings (humans) got seperated and all the dogs got locked in cages, to the point where she was crying. And by the end, I was crying, too, since it's so sappy and marvelous. Sometimes I wish I wasn't such a cryer. Oh well. Guess I can't fix that.

I also made aaplesauce bagels this morning. I have this recipe for pumpkin, but with Marc and I trying to steer clear of processed foods, I thought I'd try something else. So instead of canned pumpkin, I used home-made applesauce and whole wheat flour instead of the white. They're very good! I think I'll put in raisins next time, though.

I'm still drinking my water and peeing like nobody's business (like you needed to hear that) and on Sunday I was so bloated, I was miserable. BUT - today I feel better. Maybe my body IS adjusting to it. I hope so, anyway. I like the side-effects. My ecxema is almost gone, my legs don't itch like they do every winter, and my skin is feeling healthier in general. I think I can keep it up!!

And for lunch I had a spinach and mushroom salad and it was very tasty. Tonight we're having shrimp alfredo with whole wheat pasta - should be very tasty! I think we might cheat and have a little bread with it, but once in awhile isn't a big deal.

Hope everyone is warm and snug, wherever they are!

Sunday, January 9, 2011

Disturbed By The State of the Nation

First, I'll do some weight loss comments, before I get on my soapbox. I have drunk my water (at least ninety ounces) for the past four days and I am now bloated and cranky. Marc says it just takes some time to get used to it, so I'm hoping he's right. For lunch today, I made scrambled eggs with spinach and mushrooms and it was very good, and for that I'm thankful! It would suck if healthy food was gross, but it's really not. In the long run, whole grains, veggies, and fruits taste much better than all that processed stuff that probably gives you cancer anyway.

Can you tell that I'm cranky? So, onto my other reason for writing today. My husband said this morning (and I've quoted him already on Facebook) that he understands free speech, but what about RESPONSIBLE free speech?

Everyone already knows about the Representative that was shot in Tucson on Saturday. Twleve people were shot, including a nine-year old girl who died at the scene. 5 others are dead, including a federal judge and Representative Giffords was shot in the head. Remarkably, she survived surgery and the doctors are cautiously optimistic, but the attack was definitely aimed at her. The cause for this? A nutjob, but it doesn't help that some things were put right out there for nutjobs to concentrate on. Sarah Palin (whom I don't like and that's no secret) had a website where congressional districts were "Targeted" and on that website, various districts had bulleye markings with crosshairs. Tucson was one of those districts and what did someone do? They took it literally and SHOT someone for not agreeing with her.

When did this happen? Most of the politicians want to prove that they are "good christians" and they love Jesus. Would Jesus have done this? Would Jesus have posted crosshairs on Herod's kingdom and encouraged people to go shoot him? I think not. So where is the good Christianity that people are espousing? Certainly not where I've seen it.

A friend yesterday posted something on facebook: a short video (creatively edited) that showed Nancy Pelosi handing over the gavel of the Speaker of the House to her successor, who then hit her on the head with it. How is this funny? How can we be mad about violence when we not only condone it, we use it for our pleasure? I've got a newsflash for you - it's not funny. Not even remotely. It is NOT OKAY to post things like this for the general public.

What did I say before? There are NUTJOBS out there who will take this stuff seriously and run with it! Responsible free speech should be our right, not the right to say anything we want. Where do we draw the line? You can't scream FIRE in a crowded theater, for example, but how is putting a target on someone's head any different?

Friday, January 7, 2011

We DO Live in Minnesota, you know

School closed early today. Probably a good thing, considering it's almost impossible to see the road. I wouldn't mind except for the fact that Marc is at a meeting in New Ulm and who knows when he'll be back.

I ran errands in Sioux Falls this morning and it wasn't that bad. I got groceries (healthy foods) and did NOT stop for fast food, much as I wanted Long John Silvers or KFC. Instead, I bought a healthy sandwich at HyVee and ate it in the car, along with a sugar free mocha from Starbucks. I'm pretty proud of this, can you tell?

I drank 90 ounces of water yesterday, enough to make me pee most of the afternoon. I weighed myself this morning at I lost FOUR pounds in a day, just from the water. So I did it again today and we'll see what happens!!

This afternoon I managed to clean the bathrooms, start the laundry, and make some salad for our potluck on Sunday night at church. I feel accomplished and for the first time in a long time I actually feel pretty good about myself. The water is helping, I think, and the healing of the infection. This is a good thing!

If only I can start feeling pretty again. I KNOW I'm not unattractive, but I haven't felt pretty in a long time and it would be nice to feel that way again. I shouldn't let that be dependent on weight, but in my head it is, thanks to the images we're bombarded with every day. I wish someone would hire me to be a plus-sized model soI could see just how attractive I could actually look! Not that that will happen, but you never know!

Hope everyone is safe in their homes - I'm off to make grilled cheese sandwiches for the kids, along with key lime pie yogurt - it's their favorite.

Thursday, January 6, 2011

Spam, Spam, Spam, Spam!

Spamalot was awesome! I haven't laughed that hard in a long time and it was very nice to have a date with my husband without two small voices clamouring for attention. We had dinner at Leonardo's Cafe before the performance and the food was delightful, however...

I didn't think I'd eaten that much, though Marc tells me I did. I had most of a plate of salad and sauteed vegetables, though I did also get the pasta bar, which was probably more than I needed. My tummy felt a bit wonky afterwards, but this morning it's better.

I've made a decision today - I have to drink the water. That will solve a lot of problems, including really dry skin (which itches) and heathier hair and nails. Of course, I need to take my multivitamin every day, too, which I should manage. If I get more water into my system, then I won't itch as much, which will mean I don't need to spend the money on fake nails (fake nails prevent me from itching - they're much thicker than my regular nails) and then I can use that money for other, more fun things. And I won't have to constantly try to schedule appointments for my nails and spend the time to do them.

Not to mention, water will just make me feel better, right? So I'm drinking today, as much as I can. I might not make 100 ounces, but I'll pull of 70 at least and that's a good start.

I'm not sure if it's the steroids that are making me see the world in a better light, but today seems better than most days have been recently. Cross your fingers that I can switch the glass to half-full instead of half-empty. That's my worst fault, I think.

And I have to keep telling myself that my family is what's important, I'm a good person, and there are plenty of people who like me and my husband and children. We are in a good community in which we want to stay and grow roots, and we should work on acheiving those goals before stressing out about other things.

Everything will work out in the end. I must have faith.

Wednesday, January 5, 2011

We Want to Pump...YOU up!

So I write this as my dog has the rips in the living room. Nothing funnier than that!

I went on steroids and antibiotics yesterday due to a massive sinus infection that had the doctor wondering why I wasn't in the hospital. I figured since I was still walking around, we should keep it that way and so we're trying a less invasive treatment first. It's working, I think, or the steroids are simply giving my the illusion that things are going great!

I'm starting my journaling today for WW. I figured out what the problem was. I was so used to knowing the points of things off the top of my head that, when they changed programs, now I have to look things up and that makes me grumpy. But the meeting yesterday was so great, I may have found new purpose. I actually looked up my oatmeal this morning! Whahoo!

This is a rather short post, but I still haven't gotten the kids ready for school yet and tooth-brushing must be done. I won't be able to write tonight since we have tickets to Spamalot at the Washington Pavillion and I'm really looking forward to a date with the hubby. Oh, and the show is supposed to be funny, too. How can you go wrong with a musical based on Monty Python??

Tuesday, January 4, 2011

A Better Outlook?

So I feel better about weight watchers today. I know I've done it before (I lost 70 pounds the first time), for some reason this time seemed much harder. Might be the age, might be the inspiration. Anyway, I've got a high school reunion (20 years, don't tell) in the summer and I think it might be nice to not have such a big butt.

Weigh-in today did not go well, but the meeting was great. It was very supportive and I think that I'm ready to start journaling and get busy. Wish me luck on this!

On the way home from Pipestone today, the kids both told me all about what they did at school and I was reminded that the things that matter the most to me are the family. Sometimes I forget that, and I shouldn't. So I'm reminding myself now that those are the important moments. Sure, it matters that I remember to pay the school lunch bill, but in the end, they won't stop feeding her if I forget for a few days. I did pay it, by the way.

And I'm addicted to Facebook. I play this game called Mousehunt. If you don't play it, you should - it's fabulous!

Monday, January 3, 2011

Is It Okay to Crate the Children?

All right. There is one part of this plan that is a bit silly. I'm supposed to drink half my body weight in ounces of water a day. yeah, I was confused about that for awhile, too, but what it means is I divide my weight in half (102) and then have to drink that many ounces of water. Are you kidding me?? I was lucky to make 30. Marc managed to do it, but his bladder must be HUGE because I would have been peeing all day.

I also ate a piece of chocolate at work. This is supposed to be a slow start, right? I'll get there. I might not lose weight this week, but I have every intention of working out in the morning, so that will help make me less cranky. I hope.

On a different note, I'm tired of listening to my children fight with my dog. I would like to let the dog stay out since he is, after all, a dog and doesn't know that the children are not puppies. The children however, know that the dog is a dog and yet they keep egging him on. I would like to put THEM in the crate. I know this isn't possible (they don't fit - they tried, not me) and someone would undoubtedly report me, but I'm SURE that other moms have felt the same way at some point.

Oh, and the bright note of the day: Ben Browder has a new show coming out. I loved him in Farscape and to have him back on TV will relieve Vincent D'onofrio of having to be my TV boyfriend. Don't worry - Marc has a movie girlfriend. Jamie Lee Curtis. I know, I think that's weird, too.

So I got off to a rough start, but hopefully I'll get better. No chocolate tomorrow - it wasn't that good. I think I only ate it because it was chocolate. I need to get over that.

Sunday, January 2, 2011

A New Beginning

Tomorrow, Marc and I are going to try and eat only non-processed natural foods for the next ten weeks. It's part of the Impact Body Plan that he's really keen on. He's planning on doing the full plan, which includes a workout that's highly detailed each week. I've looked at this workout plan and there's no way I can do it. I mean, some of the moves in that would make me make noises similar to a dying moose just trying to contort my body into those positions. So he can follow the entire thing. I, on the other hand, am going to follow the eating plan and continue with my usual workout at Anytime Fitness.

The all natural food thing is a good idea - Weight Watchers recommends the idea and so I'll go with it and see if I lose any weight.

As of right now, I weight 204 pounds, which is way too much. I have SO MANY cute clothes that would fit my backside if it were just twenty pounds lighter. So cross your fingers that I can do it. I'm hoping this blog might help me do it, considering talking to whoever is reading might make me feel accountable. So if you're reading, drop me a note and let me know.

And it won't just be weight loss - there are many strange things that happen in the mind of a mommy. The conversations that happen with children are amazing. For instance, in line at the Jasper MiniMall yesterday, I had a long conversation about rubber boots, which the man in front of us was wearing. Sintu found them incredibly cool and wanted to know why he didn't have a pair. Hmmm...maybe because he doesn't have to muck out barn stalls? But heck, if rubber boots would make him happy, then maybe I'll get him some for his birthday.