Wednesday, July 28, 2010

I'm a Versatile Blogger!

Maria, a.k.a. DiZneDiVa nominated me for the Versatile Blogger award. I am so honored to be told that I have inspired her.

She says the rules are as follows:

Thank the person giving the award

Thank you so much, Maria! You made my night.

Share 7 things about yourself.

1. I have two parrots, Liberty and Kumba. I adore them with all of my heart. Liberty is sitting on my head right now, preening my hair.

2. I am a college student. I dropped out the first time through, so I decided to go back to school in my early 30's. I only have three classes to go until I have my Associate's Degree! I'm taking American Politics and Strategies for College Success this upcoming semester. However, I still have no idea what I want to be when I grow up.

3. I am a roller coaster junkie and I was even a member of the Florida Coaster Club for several years.

4. I never planned or wanted to get married. I met Scott when I was 22 and we lived together for several years before he asked me to marry him By that point I knew I wanted to spend the rest of my life with him so I said yes!

5. I am a licensed ham radio operator. I never use the radios anymore but my call sign is KG4PGE.

6. I have secret dreams about becoming a registered dietician because I LOVE learning about nutrition, food science, and diet. It's my true passion. I never really thought that anyone would listen to a fat nutritionist, so I put that dream aside. With every pound I lose though, I think about pursuing that dream again. I would love to work with bariatric patients.

7. have major texture issues and my husband thinks I may be mildly autistic. I CANNOT touch sand or dirt with my feet. It completely skeeves me out. I hate a lot of foods that most people like, such as Rice Krispie Treats, raised donuts, eclairs, mushrooms, rice pudding, French toast, water chestnuts, and raw tomatoes. I can't touch chalk or chalkboards. Other than that...I'm pretty normal. ;-)

Nominate 15 newly discovered Blogs...

I don't think I've discovered too many new ones lately and my Ambien is kicking in, but I'll nominate a few that I started reading relatively recently...

Pie in Progress
Grace's Fat Chance
Two Sticks or a Lighter
Fat Like Me
Band Together
Provoking Practicality

Monday, July 26, 2010

Support Group & New Bandster Friend

Tonight was the monthly support group for my surgeon's practice. It was a good one. The bandsters are increasing! Not in size, because we're all shrinking away, but in numbers. I think there were 4 bandsters tonight, among the 8-9 bypass people and 2 sleeve people. (And by the way, do bypass and sleeve people have a cool nickname like "bandster"?)

Anyway, tonight was just an open session and we talked about everything under the sun. We got some free vitamin and mineral samples - score! I revealed that I am going bald (yes, it's true, I'm losing my hair and I'm hoping it won't last). There was a new person who is gearing up for her surgery next month - such an exciting and scary time!

After the meeting, I went to dinner with a newly banded lovely young woman named Amanda and her very sweet husband. Four weeks ago today, Nurse G mentioned that there were 2 newly banded women in the hospital next door to the surgeon's office and asked if I'd go over and say hi and offer some encouragement. So I did. The last time I saw Amanda she was in a hospital gown, hopped up on morphine, and now she is just doing amazingly well. I'm so happy for her. It's really nice to have someone to talk to who has been through the exact same thing I have. Shared experience is a powerful thing!

Saturday, July 24, 2010

BYOC Friday

1. Let’s brag a little….what’s the best perk you’ve ever had in your job (current or past)?

When I was in high school, I worked as a radio DJ at our school's station. I had a Grateful Dead/classic rock show called From the Vault. I would play rare concert footage and stuff like that. This lady, Jamie, called me and said she was looking for someone to work for her company part-time making jewelry and selling Grateful Dead merchandise to wholesalers (mostly head shops) out of her home and she heard me on the air and was wondering if I'd be interested. She knew that since I worked at the radio station I was a student and figured I wasn't some nut job. HECK YES I was interested! So, I worked for her for most of my senior year and the best perk ever? Paid time off when the Dead passed through town, concert tickets AND backstage passes! Jamie was sad to lose me when I went off to college, but she hooked me up with a friend of hers in the town where I went to school and got me a job in her head shop. I still keep in touch with both of those ladies.

2. Do you ever lie in your blog?

I never lie but I sometimes omit. I'll tell you anything you want to know about me, but my husband is a very private person and there are certain things he would rather I didn't share in a public place.

3. What do you wear to bed?

I wear t-shirt and undies. But don't worry, Sarah, I promise to wear a nightgown when we share a room in Chicago.

4. Where do you go for advice?

It depends what it is about. I have friends and family who are good at different things.

5. Repeat question. Make someone a superstar without using a blog award. What comment or blog stuck with you the most this week and why?

Liz - Lizzle - Libby Lou has been inspiring the heck out of me with her workouts lately!

Wednesday, July 21, 2010

Food Sucks

I am so sick and tired of food. The whole act of planning a meal, grocery shopping, cooking or ordering takeout, cleaning up all sucks. I like going to restaurants still, but ordering something up and socializing is the part I like. Everything else...I wouldn't mind skipping the whole ordeal.

Last Friday night I went to my parents' house straight from work. I was under the impression that we'd be going to a restaurant. My mom, without mentioning anything to me, cooked salmon, roasted cauliflower, made a salad, and heated up some leftover pork loin. Well, I don't really like cooked salmon (only raw in sushi or smoked on a bagel), reheated meat gets kinda stuck and uncomfortable, and I can't just eat a pile of veggies for dinner. I choked down a tiny bit of pork for the protein and ate some cauliflower (which I LOVE) and picked out some beets and avocado from the salad, but my stomach wasn't happy and I felt bad about being miserable about the whole thing. Don't get me wrong, I so appreciate that my mom cooked, from the bottom of my heart, but I felt trapped because I didn't have a say in the matter and there wasn't a decent protein source for me. She offered to go get sushi with me and have a cup of tea while I ate but I just felt awkward about that and once I'd had a few bites of pork, not much else was going down anyway. So that was that. I waited a few hours and had a Skinny Cow ice cream

Then there was tonight. I was going to stop at the grocery store but my husband didn't want a sub from the deli and by the time I get home at 9:00 PM or later, I'm not cooking. We had no food in the house because I've been sick and haven't been grocery shopping so his cooking wasn't an option and the man would rather break his arm than grocery shop, so he asked if I'd stop at an Italian place instead. Fine. Whatever. I didn't really feel like shopping tonight anyway. I called to order, asked for a pasta kids meal for him (yeah, my husband eats the kids meal) and when she asked what else I wanted, I realized I hadn't even thought about what I wanted because I didn't want anything. I asked for, literally, "Some, I don't know, chicken and lettuce?" and she asked if I wanted a chicken caesar salad. Um, sure. Vinaigrette on the side instead of caesar dressing. It will get the job done.

I eat a frozen meal for lunch and often dinner on a lot of days. If it's not something I love, like sushi or Thai food or tacos, I just don't care. As long as it's some protein and veggies that I don't dislike, it's just...fuel. And most of the time I'd rather have veggie protein like beans or something.

Don't get me wrong, if it's something I love, I really enjoy food. I love crab. I love sushi (and I've been craving it like mad - can you tell? - I've only mentioned it about three times in this post). A really good salad? Heaven. But the day to day dealings with feeding myself and others is really freaking annoying.

In some ways, this was exactly what I was looking for with weight loss surgery, and in other ways? Honestly, it kinda sucks sometimes.

Sunday, July 18, 2010

Action Packed Weekend and BYOC

Wow, what a weekend and it's not even over! Friday night I went over to my parents' house to sleep there since it's half the distance to get there from my office than my house, and we had plans on Saturday morning so it all made sense. My mom had some great coupons and we went shopping and she treated me to 3 new shirts at Kohl's that actually fit me, so that was awesome.

Saturday morning we got up and got ready to head out. One of our favorite authors, Jennifer Weiner, was doing a reading in Ft. Lauderdale so we were going to lunch and to see the reading. We went to Seasons 52 for lunch. Has anyone been there? It's a bandster's dream restaurant. The food is fancy, but it's very fresh and seasonal...and everything on the menu is 475 calories or less. We shared a spicy shrimp and pineapple flatbread (400 calories total, so about 130 calories for my portion). Then I had a bowl of buffalo chili, which came with spicy sour cream and cornbread (335 calories, 28 grams of protein, and 7 grams of fiber total). Then we indulged in dessert, which they serve in a shot glass:

I had chocolate peanut butter mousse, and my mom had a bite, so I ate about 3/4 of it for about 225 incredibly decadent calories. Yum. It was a very indulgent meal for not too much damage on the scale. Yes, it was about 750 calories but I'd put money on it that pre-band, I'd eat double that at one meal and not be nearly as satisfied. It kept me full for 7 hours.

After lunch, we headed over to Borders to see Jennifer Weiner read from her new book. If you don't know this author, I highly recommend reading her. Her first book, Good In Bed, is about opening a magazine and seeing an article written by her ex-boyfriend entitled, "Loving a Larger Woman," and it seriously throws her for a loop. Anyone who has ever had weight issues would love this book. She also write In Her Shoes which became a movie with Cameron Diaz and Toni Collette. Awesome.

Jennifer was just so engaging and hilarious and it was such a good time. Here are a couple of pictures from the event. The first is Jennifer reading her new book, and the other of when I met her:

Last night my husband and I hung out with our AWESOME friends Greg and Donna. We had dinner at Tijuana Flats (my favorite) and talked and talked and talked until about 1:3o in the morning. We love those guys. The four of us have been friends for over 10 years and we have done so much cool stuff together, including an AMAZING trip to Hawaii. Greg actually married us, and Donna was my matron of honor. We had such a great time last night.

Today I am going to pick up my "niece" (not technically my niece, but she's my dear friend's daughter who I've known since she was a fetus) to take her out to lunch and a movie for girl's day. So...I better run off and get ready, but here's my BYOC...


1. Because I’m going hardcore on Monday to lose my last 15 before vacation I’m curious….what’s the oddest diet you have tried? Or which ones have you tried and were any successful?

Honestly? I lost a lot of weight quickly on Atkins, but I couldn't maintain it for long. When I actually got angry at a friend for baking chocolate chip cookies, I knew I was in a bad place. But to drop a few pounds quickly? Yeah, I'd recommend doing it for 2 weeks. Other than that, I've tried a LOT of diets (haven't we all?). I've done cookie diets, shakes, low carb, low fat, NutriSystem, Jenny Craig (3x), Weight Watchers, name it.

2. Do you prefer baths or showers?

I like baths if I have a nice, large, CLEAN bathtub. Otherwise showers are it. My house doesn't have a bathtub at all so it's been awhile.

3. What is your favorite breakfast food?

A big ol' breakfast burrito filled with eggs, cheese, hash browns, sausage, and smothered with sour cream, guacamole, and salsa. Um yeah. It's been awhile since I've had that, and the one time I've had something similar since being banded, I don't think I ate half. My other favorite used to be a big southern breakfast - scrambled eggs with cheese, bacon, biscuits smothered in gravy, hash brown casserole. I don't think I've had that in over a year. Now? I have leftovers more often than not, or I'll have a turkey sandwich on a sandwich thin or hard boiled eggs (which I am sick of right now) or a bagel thin with cream cheese and smoked salmon or something like that. The only thing I don't love in the morning (even though I've tried) is anything sweet - yogurt and fruit, granola, cereal, pancakes, smoothies...none of that stuff works for me in the morning, although I love Greek yogurt with fruit and Kashi Go-Lean Crunch as a snack or dessert.

4. What’s your least favorite word?

I hate the word "moist." It's so gross. I hate when people refer to food as such...moist chicken, moist just makes me think of sweaty and funky. I also cringe over "axe" as in, "Let me axe you a question." Other words like the "n" word as in black people and the "f" word referring to a gay person are just words that I won't even say or write.

5. Repeat question…make someone a Superstar for a day! Whose blog or comment spoke to you or stuck with you the most this week and why?

Gilly's post about Zombieland was just awesome!!!

Monday, July 12, 2010

Foods I Am Loving Now

I haven't done one of these posts in awhile, so here are the foods that are striking my fancy lately...

Crabs! Specifically dungeoness crab legs, my new favorite! They're practically all protein, almost no carbs or fat (unless you eat the butter and corn that come with them at Joe's Crab Shack...but with all that yummy crab, who has room for the other stuff?). A whole dungeoness crab is 140 calories, less than 2 grams of fat, 1 gram of carbs, and a whopping 28 grams of protein! Plus they taste so amazing simply steamed with Old Bay, and what bandster can eat more than a couple of crab leg clusters...a perfectly sensible dinner. I'm going to Joe's with some friends later this week and really looking forward to indulging in lots of yummy, sweet crab.

I try to cook fresh veggies whenever possible, but the Green Giant digestive health blend is one that I try to have in my freezer all the time. It's a delicious blend of white beans, yellow carrots, spinach, and some delicious garlicky sauce. Half a cup contains 90 calories, 4 grams of protein, and an awesome 5 grams of fiber, and it tastes so good. I had it tonight as a side with a small steak, but sometimes if I'm feeling particularly lazy, I'll eat a whole package for lunch for 180 calories.

Tijuana Flats is my favorite place to eat lunch out. They offer lots of healthy choices, including whole wheat taco shells, "Power Lite" style with lowfat cheese and sour cream, and a whole menu section on how to customize your meal to make it lower in calories and fat. I love the chicken and black bean tacos, Power Lite, with lettuce and onions, on whole wheat taco shells. And I am addicted to their hot sauce bar. Come on...they have sauces called, among others, "Smack My Sweet Ass and Call Me Sally," "Don't Be a Chicken Sh*t," "Colon Blow," and "See Spot in Heat." Although my favorite is the more tamely named, "Cafe Louisiane Hotter 'n' Hell" which is deeeeeee-licious! I will shamefully admit that I ate there three times last week and I still managed to lose three pounds, so it can't be all bad. (Oh, and I get a side salad instead of chips. That probably helps.) Also, their slogans, "Roll me a fat one," and "Rock out with your guac out," just make me giggle. sauce bar...

Sunday, July 11, 2010

5K Baseline

I have the most helpfulest (yes, I know that's not a real word but it's the only one that works here) blog friends and I was so encouraged with all of the responses when I asked whether I should walk or "run" the 5K in Chicago. Thank you!

I went to the gym this afternoon and did a 5K on the treadmill, just to get a baseline for where I am now. The answer numbers were pretty pathetic. It took me just under an hour, 58 minutes and 33 seconds to be exact, to do 3.2 miles. I'm not being down on myself about this...I'm sooo glad I got off my "buts" and did it. I burned a whole lot of calories and feel fantastic.

I am so excited to have a concrete goal to strive for, and I can't wait for the BOOBS 5K in September!

I Have Big Buts and I Cannot Lie

No, that's not a typo. I'm talking about excuses, not...errr...posterior regions.

Confession time: I haven't been to the gym all week. Here are where my big buts come in:

* The gym was closed on July 4 and it was raining outside so I had no way to work out.
* Monday, July 5 was a day off from work. I needed to use that day to rest and get some housework done.
* I just started my 5-hour-per-week consulting job (on top of my 45-hour-per-week regular job). There just wasn't time.
* My debit card was hacked and I had to spend hours with the bank getting it sorted out.
* My husband has a cold.
* That TV show Huge started last week and I just loved it. I had to take an hour to watch it.

Ok, so some of those (especially the job thing) might be semi-valid, but if I am being completely honest, I could have found a half hour on a few days this week to get some exercise.

BUT (and there's another big but), here's what's really freaking me out. I didn't exercise and I lost over 3 pounds this week. Working out like a maniac the 2 prior weeks I lost 1.6 pounds. Whiskey Tango Foxtrot, y'all? Is that ALL muscle/fluid loss? So strange.

Ah well, I suppose I'll get off my big buts and my big butt and go to the gym today anyway.

Saturday, July 10, 2010

BOOBS 5K Walk/Run

So...who is doing the Boobs 5K in Chicago? I want to sign up but am torn about whether to sign up for the walk or the timed run. I am so not a runner. But I have walked several 5K's and am starting to think about whether I want to set running (at least part of) the 5K in September as a goal. Hmmm. Decisions. Any input? Is 2 months enough or should I make that my goal for next year? Keep in mind that I'm still 230-something pounds.

Saturday, July 3, 2010


1. Seeing that it’s a patriotic holiday of sorts I thought of this one: Where were you on September 11th?

Scott and I were getting ready to go to work and running a little late. The phone rang and it was our co-worker, Amy. We thought she was calling to see where we were. Scott turned ashen and said something about, "Someone hit the twin towers. Turn on the TV." We watched in real time as the second plane hit. Scott had just moved from New Jersey a year before that, and he worked in Manhattan for years. I was so scared. We barely left the house that day. We just watched CNN all day long.

2. What is your idea of fun? If given the chance to skip work/life for an entire day, what would you do? (assume you’d be by yourself)

I'd go to an amusement park and ride lots of roller coasters.

3. Suggestion from a follower. Some blog questions.

How many blogs do you follow? I'm not sure. A bunch?

Do you read them all or just your faves? I read them all. It's like painting the Golden Gate bridge. I start at the top and work my way down. When I get to the end, I start back at the beginning again.

Do you comment a little, a lot, on all? Not nearly as many as I would like, since I read from my Blackberry a lot.

Have you ever unfollowed someone because of something they said or you didn’t like their blog? One time. There was something said about how she wasn't one of those "fat cows" who started above 250 pounds. That pissed me off and I unfollowed.

Do you routinely unfollow and why? See above.

4. Repeat question. Pick one day and one healthy thing you’ll do for just that day next week.

Ummm. Well this week was a bust because I overslept on Zumba day. I can't even promise to go this week because I have an appointment on Wednesday morning. I'll try to exercise outside one day this week. It seems to be good for my soul to do that.

5. Repeat "Make someone a superstar" question. Whose blog or blog comment stuck with you this week and why?

Amy's coming out. I'm so proud of her for being true to herself.