Monday, May 23, 2011

Apparently a good day for our blog

Totally not trying to steal Charleen's thunder because her posts today are awesome! I just happened to write a blog post today before I found out about hers.

Well, this year my goal has been to post more often...I was doing really well to start but now it's been over a month since I last posted. So, what's been happening?

First things first, the weather's been nicer. A lot nicer! Being in the midwest it's bounced back and forth a lot, but overall it's been pretty nice and we've been spending a lot more time outside with our new bikes. Yup, that's right Char and I got bikes and we're using them quite a bit. There's a trail near here that we've been riding on once or twice a week. I even rode my bike into work this morning for the first time! It's about 8 miles and took me a little over a half hour. I'm hoping to do that a lot over the summer.

Let's see, we went back to our hometown a little over a week ago and "went to" the Lilac Day Parade. We're from Lombard and it's the Lilac Villiage. Every year they have a parade that's about 3 hours long that just about everyone in town goes to...and then some. I think the estimate I heard is that usually there are about 55,000 people in attendance (pretty good for a town of about 34,000 last I knew). Anyway the reason that "went to" is in quotes a couple sentences back is because the weather on the day of the parade was absolutely lousy for parade weather. It was windy and cold and misting out all day,so we went to our friend Lynsey's place that is right on the parade route and watched through her bay window. We still saw everything, but it wasn't quite the same as being on the curb on a bright sunny day. Still fun to hang out with good friends though.

And finally, we finished watching Stargate SG-1 this past week including both of the movies that follow the series. We started watching them about 2 years ago with some friends back home. I had seen most of the first 4 seasons when they originally aired, but didn't keep up and Charleen hadn't seen any of it. We both enjoyed it a lot. Now to decide what series in our long list to watch next. I've started watching Eurika and Fullmetal Alchemist: Brotherhood (yes I like anime), I'd also like to watch Warehouse 13 and Big Bang Theory. Then of course there's How I Met Your Mother, and catching back up on Castle and NCIS, but none of those are available for instant view with Netflix. So yeah, that's the short list of TV series that I'd like to watch.

Anyway, that's just a little bit of what's been going on lately. Lots of getting outside mixed in with some healthy TV watching. :D Oh, and we're planning on getting Slider in on some of the outdoor action soon. We'll see if he can get over his dislike of his harness if it means that he can actually walk around outside. Should be interesting.


Two posts in one day, oh my! I guess this is what happens when I actually leave the house -- relatively interesting things happen to me ("relatively" being the key word in that statement).

So. I've been doing some running around. Pat actually rode his bike in to work today (I'm sure he'll tell you all about that at some point), so I've been taking advantage of having the car WITHOUT having to wake up crazy early to drive him to work: yay! AND, without having to keep tabs on the clock for fear of forgetting to pick him up later: double yay!

Well the first thing I did that's worth noting is I drove out to the bike trail that we use, but instead of biking, I was running. Running is a new thing for me, and at this point I'm actually doing more walking than running, but if you're actually interested in reading about all that, I direct you to my Spark blog posts here and here.

And if you skim any of my other blog posts over the past week or so, you'll notice that I've been a little apathetic lately. Basically I feel like my results aren't showing anywhere other than the scale. Not that I'm not happy about losing the pounds. But I feel like my body shape isn't changing as rapidly as I'd like. I'm almost halfway to my goal (can you frickin' believe it?!?!) and I just don't look much different than I did when I started. But, of course, I'm my own worst critic, and I see myself every day, so who am I to judge.

Well, I bought some new capris about a week ago. The ones that I had were getting pretty loose, and I figured they would only get looser over the summer, so I decided to go ahead and buy some new ones to help bridge the gap through to autumn, when I'm hoping I'll be able to buy new jeans that are a couple sizes smaller than the ones I'm currently wearing. And, while the 16's that I tried on certainly fit, the 14's weren't too tight, so I decided to go with the 14's, knowing that I'll only be losing more weight as the summer goes on.

Fast forward to today, shortly after publishing my previous blog entry. I was wearing my new size-14 capris, and I had to go to the bathroom. (This is important to the story, I swear.) Momentarily forgetting that these were my new capris, I went to pull them down without unfastening them, as I can with my old pair. And . . . they came down.

Let me repeat. I pulled down my size-14 capris that I JUST BOUGHT A WEEK AGO without unbuttoning or unzipping them.

Maybe I was bloated when I went shopping before. Who knows. But whatever the reason, I suddenly felt sure that I could fit into a size 12. I had to go back to Kohl's to exchange something else today anyway, so I decided to exchange my capris as well. Went to the store and, sure enough, those size-12's fit. As before, they're a little tight, and I probably wouldn't buy them if I was planning on staying this size, but I'm not, so I did, and I'm wearing them right now! Me! Size 12's! Purchased in the regular-sized-people section and everything!

My current full-length jeans are still 16's, and they still fit pretty comfortably, so I can't really say I'm out of the plus-size section officially. But, I can say that I'm done shopping in the plus-size section, because I will certainly be ready for 14's or 12's (or, depending on the brand/fit/etc, maybe even 10's!) by the next time I buy jeans.

This realization put me in such a great mood that I spent about another 30 minutes wandering the non-plus-size section looking for other non-plus-size things that would fit me. I managed to restrain myself. I made an exception for the capris, but buying pretty much an entire new wardrobe is going to be expensive enough once I get there, without picking up all the in-between sizes along the way.

B3 is Awesome!

(First off, B3 is Bed Bath and Beyond, for those who may not have had a friend who worked there at one point and just got used to hearing it called that. Now, to the point.)

So about four and a half years ago, when we were in the wedding planning phase, we registered at B3. We had gotten two different sets of dishes passed down to us from two different family members -- both "everyday use" and "fancy guest" -- so we didn't really need to register for the traditional wedding china. What we did need was silverware to go with said dishes. So we registered for a fairly simple-looking flatware set, along with a fancier gold-trimmed flatware set to go with the "fancy guest" dishes . . . which, for the record, we have never used, and honestly they aren't even really my style, but at least we'll be prepared if we ever need to host a really fancy dinner someday.

Anyway, we got the simple silverware. We've been using it quite happily for years. But out of the fancy stuff (and this is one of those flatware sets so fancy that each place-setting needs to be purchased individually), we only got a 4-piece serving set. None of the actual silverware. And yes, we did go for a massive shopping trip after the wedding hoopla had died down to buy things that we hadn't received, but basically we decided that we didn't really need fancy silverware. But we still had this one serving set. That didn't match any of our other flatware. And we decided we were going to return it . . . and then somehow it never happened. And for years, every time we move, I come across this serving set, and think, "Damn, why didn't we ever return this?" And after our two-year anniversary when our registry was purged from their system, I figured it was too late. But I've always meant to go in and ask if, even though it was years past the purchase and I didn't have a receipt and didn't really have high hopes, was it possible to return it?

Well, long story short . . . four years, one month, and ten days after receiving said gift, I now have a B3 store credit for $69.54.

Remember in my last post how I mentioned there was all sorts of fancy kitchen gadgets I wished I had, but didn't want to spend money on because I didn't really need any of it . . . ?

Wednesday, May 11, 2011


I made a pretty good breakfast this morning. Something I'll definitely have to try again, particularly on the weekend so we can both sit down and enjoy it.

Basically I made a skillet with potato, onion, scrambled egg, and a little cheese. The potatoes were a little hard for my taste, so next time I'll have to either chop them up smaller, or let them cook for a while on their own before adding the onion. Anyway, I just cooked those up for a bit, then shoved them to the side and added my egg to the pan. Some of it ran over to where the veggies were, but I was able to contain most of it and scrambled it up. Then I mixed it all together anyway, but I just didn't know how the egg would have cooked had it been mixed with the potato and onion all together (though I may try that next time just to see how it turns out). Then I turned off the heat, added some shredded cheese to the top and let it melt before dishing it out onto my plate.

It was really good, except like I said I would have preferred the potatoes to be a little more well-done. I also think it could have used a little green pepper in with the other veggies. I'm not really big on green (or red or yellow or orange) pepper, but sometimes I get a craving for the flavor of it, and this dish could have used a little of that flavor. It's bizarre to get a craving for something I don't really like, but it's only once in a while, and with certain dishes, and in small amounts.

It's kind of funny, I really enjoy cooking, and I never thought I'd hear myself say that. I always hated cooking when I first started living on my own, but a lot of what I made was stuff like hamburger helper or mac and cheese. It's easy, sure, but it's boring as hell. I don't like standing around, doing nothing except making sure something doesn't burn or boil over. I like keeping busy in the kitchen . . . but not being frantic, which is sometimes a fine line, particularly when I'm trying to make multiple things and make sure they're all ready at the same time. But it's just funny to look at how much more comfortable with cooking I've become.

Now that I'm trying to eat healthier, I'm always looking for new recipes that will accommodate my somewhat picky tastes. And every time I try one, I'm thinking of ways I could tweak it for next time. Used to be that I would follow a recipe to the letter and that was that, and I'd freak out at phrases like "a dash of" or "season to taste" -- anything that didn't give me a set amount to follow. Now, I definitely appreciate having a recipe as a starting point, but I have no qualms changing things to suit my own tastes.

I wish that I would have gotten to this point before we got married, because it would have made registering for gifts so much easier. There are so many things around the kitchen that we registered for and have never used. Various cooking utensils, oven pans of every imaginable size and shape, a gigantic stainless steel pot with strainer/steamer accessories (okay, that one we've used . . . probably a total of twice.) I mean, they're good to have, I guess. But I'd trade them all for a food processor in a heartbeat. I don't want to buy one because I get along fine without it, but there are definitely times I wish I had one, and those times are far more common than the times I think, "I'm so glad I have six different types of baking pans."

Hmm, this is not at all how I expected this post to go after starting with, I made a pretty good breakfast.

Monday, May 2, 2011

Four Months Down

Four months down, and my weight-loss is coming along nicely. At this rate, I'll reach my goal by the end of the year, but I know that's not how these things work, and I'm not expecting that. Currently, I lose anywhere between 1 and 3 lbs a week, depending on the week. But even if I never hit one of those dreaded plateaus everyone always complains about, I know it will eventually slow down. It's fine to be losing that much when I'm 50 lbs overweight. My body's going to reject my efforts if I try to lose that much when I'm only 15 lbs overweight. So eventually I'll be losing only 1 lb a week, and then maybe even just 2-3 lbs a month, until I gradually ease into my new weight and maintain it.

Besides, my REAL goal isn't even to hit a certain number. My real goal is to be healthy, to look and feel great. I'm aiming for 140 because I need something to aim for. For me (little 5'3" me), that's the high end of "healthy" on the BMI scale. But who knows. I might get to 150 and be perfectly healthy. I might get to 140 and realize I really should lose another 15 lbs. And as I get closer I'll start paying more attention to other things that are a more accurate representation of my health than the number on the scale, to figure out where my "magic number" really is.

Anyway, thanks for all the support so far, and sorry my blog posts have been so single-minded lately.

But at least I'm not talking about World of Warcraft. Oops, I mean . . .

Kidding, honey!