Friday, October 15, 2010

Hi, my name is. . .

Carrie.



I've been thinking a lot lately about what exactly that means.



Who am I? What's my life's purpose?



I think it's to be a mother. To raise my children. But I feel like I'm so bad at it that maybe that's not it.



I just don't know.



For anyone reading this, I'm curious. What is your life's purpose? What do you think you're supposed to do with your life?

Friday, October 8, 2010

SUCCESS!!!

OMG! I have had a major break through with the intuitive eating stuff.

After reading a couple of Geneen Roth books, I still felt unsure. I'm a very right-brained, analytical type person and her writing is less straight forward that I like. She writes beautifully and I like her books a lot but for starting out, I didn't find them very helpful.

So I bought the book Intuitive Eating by two nutritionists. I love, love it. No complaints at all. I've been following their guidelines as close as possible for less than a week AND. . .

1. I decided I wanted to binge last night. I had already surrendered to the inevitability of it. I had even gotten the food out. Suddenly I said to myself, "If you do this, it is a binge." And I didn't. I put the food back and left it at that.

2. I was hungry this morning but I had morning duty. I decided I would eat an apple to tide myself over until I could eat my breakfast. I took one bite of my apple, decided I didn't want it and threw it away.

3. Someone was getting people lunch at work today. I had my choice between Jack in the Box and Subway. I genuinely thought about the choice. I imagined eating my favorite meal from JB and it didn't seem like something I wanted.

I always pick the worst thing on the menu, always go for the worst (in terms of nutrition) choice. I chose Subway. And I was happy about my choice.

SUCCESS!!!!

Intuitive Eating Experiment

Day 1 (of keeping track): Yesterday was awesome. Aside from some major successes that I wrote about here, I learned some other things as well.

First I am feeling very confident about this. The fear is leaving and I feel like even if I didn't lose weight I would be ok with that because of how great I feel. My attitude toward food is so different. It's only been a week, maybe less and I feel so different. I can think about what I want to eat with no problem and I just decide. I'm not eating very healthy right now but hopefully that will eventually change.

I am still scared. Gaining weight is scary but I know it's part of the process. For the first time, maybe ever, I don't feel like food is an enemy. I just feel like it's food. I thought when I allowed myself to eat anything I would fast food and junk for months but already I'm eating better. Last night I wanted soup and bread. That's all. Maybe that doesn't sound so amazing. But for me whenever I've ever told myself I can eat whatever I want, I always choose the worst thing I can find. To choose something normal is crazy for me.

I also had a bit of a discovery. One of the things in the book they talk about is eating whatever you want. And if you want one thing and try to eat something different, you won't be satisfied. Last night I came home and wanted more soup and bread. But I didn't want to bother with making it so I ate a peanut butter and jelly sandwich and then ice cream and then more peanut butter and I still wasn't satisfied. I'll bet money if I had just taken the few minutes to prepare the soup I would have felt much better. At least I know now.

Day 2: Not as good today. I ate a big breakfast at about 9am so I shouldn't have been hungry for a while. But by noon I was desperate to eat again. Let me clarify, not hungry I just wanted to eat. I tried to figure out what was wrong, I chewed gum. But I wanted to eat. Finally I gave in and ate an early lunch. Not sure what to think of that. Maybe I was still wanting the soup and bread from last night. I just don't know. We'll see how the rest of the day goes. Wish me luck.

Well the day hasn't gotten any better. I'm wondering if this is a reaction to having such a good day yesterday. I can't really think of anything else. Oh well, tomorrow is another day.

Day 3: Much better day. I'm still really scared about this whole thing. What if I never stop eating? What if I keep wanting to eat nasty foods instead of turning to real, healthy food? How can I ever lose weight doing this?

I'm not asking for much. I don't want to be at a ridiculous weight just a good weight for my body. But how will eating like this get me there? I feel like everyone I read about it tends to me more on the anorexic side of things and I'm more on the bulimic side of things. Does that make sense? Maybe anorexics can be more successful than us. I don't know. I'm just scared. But I'm trying really hard to trust.

Thursday, October 7, 2010

Scary

During my senior year of college I got a great job. Basically I sat at a desk all weekend. I worked at a condo that just needed someone at the office during the weekend. I didn’t show apartments or anything like that. My only responsibilities were to deliver packages that showed up and occasionally walk the building to make sure everything was ok. Super easy.

Since I was there Friday night, 12 hours on Saturday and most of Sunday, I decided to work out while I was there. So every so often I’d run the stairs of the building. Because they had elevators, the stairs were almost never used. They were not fancy but just concrete stairs.

So one Saturday night around 11pm or so I was running back down the stairs. I turned the corner and there was a man lying on the ground in front of the door to that floor. There was blood on the door so I figured he’d fallen down the stairs. He seemed barely conscious.

But suddenly my heart started pounding. My body was telling me something was wrong. That I needed to run.

It occurred to me that this could be a set up. If someone was behind me, I was done. They could do anything to me in this stairwell and maybe no one would ever know.

I turned around. No one. I heard the man say no as I told him I would get help.

I ran. I ran up those stairs 3 or 4 at a time. I had my cell phone with me and immediately dialed 911.

I honestly don’t think I’ve ever been more scared in my life.


The police and firemen showed up. I took them back to where I’d seen the guy and I knew he wouldn’t be there. And he wasn’t.



There was still blood on the door but he was gone.


I’m sure he was on drugs or something and fell down the stairs. When he knew I was getting help, he probably just stumbled off to wherever he’d come from.



But still I bawled that night. I knew how close I’d come to something very bad happening. I still get scared when I think of it.


I imagine turning around and someone being there. A simple trap.


From me to you, take the elevator.

Friends

There is a saying, "Make friends before you need them." I like that. I love the idea of having friends as almost an insurance policy. You don't usually NEED them but someday you will.

I always saw myself as having very few friends. But when I look around now I finally see that really isn't true. I have a large collection of friends I've gathered over the years. People I can count and that can count on me.

It's amazing how important friendships become in bad times. And how easy it is to neglect them in good times. Friendships tend to be the first sacrifice in a busy life. And yet they are so important. I try hard to keep my friendships alive.

I send emails, make phone calls and plans. I try to show up. It's not always easy but I know it's one of the most important things in life. Happiness and health are strongly influenced by the number of relationships you have. The more, the better.

Here's to making and keeping friends!

Fragment

Every morning I feel like I'm leaving a part of myself at my Mom's house. I miss my daughter so badly during the day.

I know I've written about this a thousand times but every time I think of how much time I'm missing with her, it hurts all over again.

I know that I'm lucky. I am able to leave my baby with my Mom. I have weekends and holidays and summers with her. I have an end in sight in which I will be able to be home full-time.

I know she's happy.

I know she's well cared for.

But I also know it's not right for a mother to be separated from her child.

I know I miss her.

I'm afraid she'll be sad someday when she talks about how I wasn't with her full-time when she was a baby.

I'm afraid she'll think of my mom as her mom.

I'm afraid she won't love me the most.

God being a mother is hard. And I am so unbelievably bad at it. I just hope she knows how much I love her and how much I want to be better for her.

Wednesday, October 6, 2010

Books, books, books

1. Favorite childhood book?
Just as Long as We're Together by Judy Blume

2. What are you reading right now?
Breaking Dawn by Stephenie Meyer (I think) and Intuitive Eating by Evelyn Tribole and
Elyse Resch

3. What books do you have on request at the library?
A Geneen Roth book. My wish list on Amazon is crazy long.

4. Bad book habit?
I don't think so. I have, in the past, had a really hard time quitting books I'm not enjoying.

5. What do you currently have checked out at the library?
No library books but I have quite a few books To Be Read. Life without Ed, The Good Earth, Great Gatsby, Mother Night, Night are a few.

6. Do you have an e-reader?
No. Well I have one for blogs but not books.

7. Do you prefer to read one book at a time, or several at once?
I usually read one fiction and one nonfiction at a time. Sometimes I read multiple nonfiction but never more than one fiction.

8. Have your reading habits changed since starting a blog?
I don't think so.

9. Least favorite book you read this year (so far?)
I didn't really like The girl who played with fire. I also tried to read the Lord of the Ring trilogy. I made it through The Hobbit but I hated it. Where did the movies come from? Those books are so boring. Dreaming in Hindi was super lame too.

10. Favorite book you’ve read this year?
I freaking love Twilight series. I also really liked The Happiness Project and I'm loving Intuitive Eating.

11. How often do you read out of your comfort zone?
Um, I don't know what this question means. I guess reading books that make me uncomfortable. Never. I read for pleasure.

12. What is your reading comfort zone?
See above.

13. Can you read on the bus?
Usually.

14. Favorite place to
read?
Bed.

15. What is your policy on book lending?
No problem. I rarely keep books so I give them away once I finish them. If I loved, I have no problem sharing.

16. Do you ever dog-ear books?
All the time.

17. Do you ever write in the margins of your books?
Not that I can think of.

18. Not even with text books?
Not usually. Occasionally highlight.

19. What is your favorite language to read in?
English.

20. What makes you love a book?
I don't know.

21. What will inspire you to recommend a book?
If I like it.

22. Favorite genre?
Not sure. I read everything really.

23. Genre you rarely read (but wish you did?)
Not sure. I feel pretty good about my reading.

Favorite biography?
Huh, uh, does the Other Boelyn Girl count? What a great book and historically very accurate.

25. Have you ever read a self-help book?
All the freaking time. I'm a big believer in self-improvement.

26. Favorite cookbook?
Don't have one.

27. Most inspirational book you’ve read this year (fiction or non-fiction)?
The Happiness Project and Intuitive Eating

28. Favorite reading snack?
I don't like to eat and read.

29. Name a case in which hype ruined your reading experience.
I can't think of one. I try to know as little about books as possible so things don't get ruined.

30. How often do you agree with critics about a book?
I don't read critics.

31. How do you feel about giving bad/negative reviews?
It's not my fault if a book sucks. I didn't write it.

32. If you could read in a foreign language, which language would you chose?
French or Italian

33. Most intimidating book you’ve ever read?
I was scared to read Tolstoy but I love War and Peace and Anna Karenina.

34. Most intimidating book you’re too nervous to begin?
Nothing.

35. Favorite Poet?
Good Lord, I hate poetry.

36. How many books do you usually have checked out of the library at any given time?
I usually have between 10 and 20 books to be read at any given time.

37. How often have you returned book to the library unread?
Never. Even if I don't finish (because I don't like it), I always start the book.

38. Favorite fictional character?
Snape. I'm a sucker for unrequited love sufferers. ("Look at me.")

39. Favorite fictional villain?
What was that evil bitch from the Harry Potter books? Bella something. She was a twisted villain.

40. Books I’m most likely to bring on vacation?
Whatever I'm reading and a few extras.

41. The longest I’ve gone without reading.
Not sure. Never very long.

42. Name a book that you could/would not finish.
Fellowship of the Ring and Pride and Prejudice.

43. What distracts you easily when you’re reading?
Noise; talking, TV, etc.

44. Favorite film adaptation of a novel?
The English Patient. I hated the book but absolutely loved the movie.

45. Most disappointing film adaptation?
Most are disappointing.

46. The most money I’ve ever spent in the bookstore at one time?
Who knows?

47. How often do you skim a book before reading it?
Never.

48. What would cause you to stop reading a book half-way through?
If I didn't like it. Rape, sexual abuse, etc.

49. Do you like to keep your books organized?
No. I keep very few books.

50. Do you prefer to keep books or give them away once you’ve read them?
Give them away.

51. Are there any books you’ve been avoiding?
I avoided Twilight.

52. Name a book that made you angry.
The Girl who Played with Fire. What a let down.

53. A book you didn’t expect to like but did?
Harry Potter and Twilight.

54. A book that you expected to like but didn’t?
Lord of the Rings and Life of Pi

55. Favorite guilt-free, pleasure reading?
Funny mysteries. Twilight. Bridget Jones.

Tuesday, October 5, 2010

Hair

My poor hair. I was thinking of all the crazy things I have done to it. I don’t have many pictures but I remember them all.

In high school I thought I would take my thick, dark, curly hair and redo it into a blonde pixie ala Drew Barrymore circa 1998. Why? Oh good Lord. And when it looked bad I kept cutting it shorter for a few months. It was awful.

Then after a breakup, I decided I needed a change. So I chopped off my hair (I’m seeing a pattern) and tried to die it light red. But because it had been died even darker than it is naturally it turned out burnt orange. I was going for an angled bob but it was so big I just looked kinda like Carrot Top.

Now I mostly just ignore my poor hair. It’s in a pony tail most every day. Certainly every week day. And despite the fact that pretty much every time I cut it short it looks like crap, I’m planning on going short again. Maybe some bangs. I need to shake things up. My poor hair is becoming boring, depressing hair.

Friday, October 1, 2010

Update

The eating stuff is going quite well. It’s still hard but better. I’ve been trying to read a lot on the subject. I’m really liking the book Intuitive Eating. I don’t know if I have the trust in myself to just let go and eat whatever I want but maybe some day.

Still I feel better about things. I’m discovering a lot as I go along. How I can do things better, what works best for me, etc. It’s a journey, right? I feel like there’s not much else to say.

Work sucks. I’m really hating my job. I’m still looking for something else. I’m sure something will pop up.

R is gone at school a lot which makes things really strained between us.

Maggie is precious. She is so funny. Every day she cracks me up. We are doing a daily calendar where we talk about the months and days of the week and numbers and weather and seasons. Very fun. Sometimes I wonder if I'll be able to homeschool, which is kinda funny considering I'm a freaking teacher. But for some reason I feel scared about it.

I guess this is a super boring post so I'll end it. But before I go I should mention that I'm trying to just write for a while every day. So I'll probably be putting up more random posts. I'm just trying my hand at something new.

Monday, September 6, 2010

Lucky

I was talking to a friend of mine a couple of days ago. She was lamenting her lack of family. She has family that is alive but has little interest in being involved in her or her children's lives. It made me realize how luck I am.

I have four parents, all of whom adore Maggie and are directly involved in her life. I have 3 in-laws that I love. I could have had Marie and Frank from Everybody Loves Raymond but I got a great set up of funny, kind people.

I have aunts and uncles and siblings and cousins. I have so many people in my life that love and care for me. I am so lucky. Sometimes I forget how lucky I am. I think when most people talk about how they want a close family, they want something that looks like my family. And I have it. How lucky is that.

So I guess I just wanted to write about how grateful I am for my family and friends. My cup runneth over.

Friday, August 27, 2010

Change of heart (well, sort of)

I’ve been a vegetarian since 2005. I became a vegetarian after learning about factory farms and their atrocious practices. I’ve never been against people eating meat just the way that food gets on their plate.

Lately I’ve been reading a ton about local, grass-fed animals and how humanely they are treated. They are not in crowded filthy factories but live on actual ranches and roam around. They are not given tons of antibiotics that in turn make us antibiotic-resistant. And I support this. From the get go I’ve supported these farms. But I wasn’t supporting them in any meaningful way. Like with my money.

All of this is to say that I have decided to eat meat again. I found a market that is around the corner from my work. It is run by a couple who own a ranch and farm in Bowie and Keller. They don’t use antibiotics or hormones. They don’t feed the animals grains. Pigs eat past-its-prime produce and goats and cows eat grass. They graze all day. They even have a blog.

I am actually really excited. I’ve missed meat and I’ll be glad to be able to enjoy it guilt-free. But mostly I’m excited to be supporting a local, humane, environmentally-friendly business.

Thursday, August 26, 2010

Bored fat?

I’ve been giving a lot of thought to why I binge and I’ve come up with something. I think one reason I binge is that I’m bored. I’m bored at my job, I’m bored when I have summers off. I’m just bored. Even staying home with a 2 year old gets boring because it doesn’t take real brain power so much as major stamina.



I don’t have a job that is really challenging to me. I’m actually a pretty smart person but I couldn’t figure out what I wanted to do so I ended up here. I wish I did something that was challenging. Something I had to work at.



I think this leads to bingeing in two ways. One, when you’re bored eating seems fun and for a few minutes, it is.



Two, I think living a life without challenging myself leads me to want to create an unsolvable problem (ie losing weight). I wonder if I had something challenging to do if I would still feel the urge to binge. I wonder what I could do.

Saturday, August 21, 2010

Mommy Guilt

I've been thinking a lot about mommy guilt recently. Mostly because I've been feeling it so much recently. Maggie stayed with my mother-in-law for a week and a day while our AC was broken. My MIL posted a ton of pictures of their time together.

Every picture I saw made me feel guilty. Oh look, she cooks her something every meal (or so it seems). Oh look she's actively engaged (can you tell I'm a teacher?) with her all the time (or so it seems). I just felt like I don't spend that kind of time on Maggie. I actually felt guilty for picking her up. I thought maybe she's better off living with her various grandparents.

Isn't that horrible? Nothing makes me guilty like being a mom. I never feel like I'm doing a good enough job with her. I never feel like her diet is balanced enough. Like I'm taking her to enough playdates. Like I'm spending enough quality time with her. Like I'm good enough.

Take for instance my yoga classes. I feel so guilty about yoga. I want desperately to go to yoga but now that I'm back at work it makes it even more difficult for me to go. But (here's my Catch-22) because I'm back at work I need the yoga even more. I need that break, that exercise to clear my head. But I feel so guilty about it because it takes time away from Maggie. Well, not always. There are 2 evening classes and 1 is before her bedtime and 1 is after. But because I'm depending on other people to watch her I let them decide which time slot they would rather have her. And most times people want to see her and not just sit in my house while she sleeps.

Anyway, I don't have any answers here. I spend a lot of time wondering what percentage of mommy guilt is real (and something I should be working on/improving) and what percentage is bullshit and I should realize I will never be good enough and just do what I can and try to do my best. And goodness I just don't know.

Any thoughts? Do you suffer from mommy guilt? Have you ever thought your kid would be better off with someone else? Did that thought make you feel guilty?

PS. I want to clarify that I am immensely grateful for all my parents and family that both want and are willing to keep Maggie. I'm so grateful that she is loved by so many people. I didn't mean for this post to sound ungrateful just whiny.

Snafu and 100th post

So I went to my yoga class yesterday (which, yea for me!). At first it was great but about 45-50 minutes into class I started feeling really bad. It got worse and worse. At first I just laid there and tried to cool down (I do hot yoga, Baptiste). After about 10 minutes of that I was pretty sure I was going to throw up and there was no stopping it. So I left class, went to the bathroom and did just that. I never randomly throw up. I'm either drunk, have a stomach virus (which has happened maybe a handful of times in my adult life) or am pregnant. None of those things apply now so I'm stumped. Maybe because I donated blood Thursday afternoon. Maybe I was too hungry (I felt like I might be getting hungry on the drive over but nothing major). I have no clue. But after that I went home, ate a handful of walnuts and went to bed.

This morning I'm planning on going to yoga class but I'm starting to feel shaky again. WTF? I'm not sure what to do. I don't want to puke in the middle of class again but I really don't want to miss an opportunity to go to yoga class (with my guy in law school, a job and an almost-two-year-old, opportunities are becoming hard to get). Not sure what to do. I think I'll go and hope for the best.

Also this is my 100th post. How exciting is that! Very exciting for me! Woo hoo! I'm a blogger.

Friday, August 20, 2010

Hooray!

Fantastic news first: I haven’t binged. I have (mostly) followed the guidelines and certainly my goal of eating only when hungry. I’m so excited. Especially because last night, I really wanted to binge. I know that my binging comes from a place in my head, not in my stomach but it can be really hard to overcome that desire. I mostly used distraction to not binge. I tried on some new clothes and thought up cute outfits and then I went to bed.



I think one thing that really helps me as far as avoiding binges is to remember that you don’t have to do it. I know it feels like it’s an urge that won’t be denied but you can deny it. I also tell myself that every time I don’t do it will make it easier for me to avoid it in the future.



So that’s that. I’m really excited. It’s hard to walk through the fear of weight gain and trust that this will work eventually but I have to believe that it will. The big fear is spending my entire time on this planet obsessing over losing weight or what size pants I fit into. It’s missing time with my daughter because I’m too busy thinking about how many calories I’ve had so far. It’s missing life because I’m putting off living until I weigh X.



Wish me luck!

Wednesday, August 18, 2010

Epiphany, part 2?

After I wrote yesterday’s blog post I remembered something. I remembered an email that I sent to my sister (the lovely Elaine) when I was 17 or 18. The title of the email was Epiphany (I remember this because I could not figure out how to spell that freaking word). I don’t remember exactly what I wrote (except for the lines: I am not fat. I do not have a weight problem.) but the gist was that I was using the never-ending process of losing weight to avoid living life. To avoid dealing with my real problems. Basically constantly losing weight/gaining weight/finding new diets/starting new exercise plans was my way of avoiding life and the myriad of problems it contains.

As of today I am 28 years old. I wrote that email 10 or 11 years ago and I wrote a very similar post yesterday. Yikes!

At first this greatly depressed me. I thought oh this is impossible, I’ll never overcome this, I’m doomed. (Drama queen??? Me???)

But then I remembered (ok, I googled, but I remembered the gist) a quote. Knowledge without action is wasted. I knew what the problem was 10 long years ago but I didn’t know what to do with that knowledge. The question is do I know what to do now. I think I do. I really do. It’s super hard but that doesn’t mean it’s impossible. I won’t be the first person on Earth to have to relearn how to eat like a normal human being. It can be done. Right now I’m reading lots of Charlotte for inspiration. She had a totally f-ed up relationship with food and now a few months (that’s not so long!) later she’s on Cloud 9. She writes about how free and amazing she feels. I want that so bad. And if she can do it, so can I.

Last night, I had a huge binge. The biggest one in a while. I had eaten fine all day and followed (mostly) the eating guidelines. I went to an amazingly wonderful yoga class. I thought about food a lot during the class. On the way home I knew I wanted to eat. A lot. I knew it was coming. And I felt powerless. I’m not sure what to do when that feeling comes on. I try to tell myself it’s an urge, a desire but I don’t have to do it. I don’t have to binge.

Does it feel good in the moment? Yes, unfortunately it does. It feels great but it will always make me feel like crap after.

This isn’t going to happen over night. I have to put in the work. It’s not fun but it is what it is. I just don’t want to give up. I know I am probably gaining more weight and that’s so scary. I keep wanting to quit and just go back to dieting to lose weight but I know, in the long run, that won’t work. The weight will come off when I can follow the guidelines. It’s that simple. But this is so scary for me right now.

Tuesday, August 17, 2010

Something new

Have you read Women, Food and God? It's really good and I'm trying it out.

I have this deep dark fear that I'm going to spend my life trying to lose the same 10 to *some really high number* pounds. Like it'll never be enough, I'll never keep it off, etc. That is quite scary to me. I don't want to spend my life thinking about weight and calories and carbs and this and that. I just want to eat and work out and be healthy without all the drama. When I hear about women in their 40s, 50s and beyond talking about trying to lose weight, it terrifies me. I always thought I was dieting to be done with it. Not so I could go back to eating fried cheese and pints of Ben and Jerry's but just be free from the obsession of all things weight related.

I heard about the book first through Oprah magazine, then Charlotte of Great Fitness Experiment did it. Both talk of that freedom from obsession. Of being able to eat and enjoy food without obsessing. Without eventually binging. Freedom sounds pretty freaking great.

The author, Geneen Roth, talks about dieting as a distraction. A distraction from whatever. From life, basically. I'm busy dieting but as soon as I'm done I'll change careers or find a partner or be a better mother. Only you're never done dieting. It never stops so you never have to fail at life or take risks or whatever you're avoiding.

So at first it seemed really easy and I was quite excited but I guess crazy runs deep cos it's gotten much harder.

First the eating guidelines. You are supposed to:

1. Eat when hungry.
2. Eat sitting down in a calm environment (cars don't count).
3. Eat without distractions (YIKES!!!).
4. Eat what your body wants.
5. Eat until you are satisfied.
6. Eat with pleasure and gusto.
7. Eat with the intention of being in full view of others.

These seem so simple. Maggie already does all of these without even thinking about it. Or knowing about it. Me? Holy crap. They are so hard, I decided to do one at a time for a week each. And just keep trying until I get it.

So I am on number 1. Eat when hungry. This one is getting easier. I've been doing it since Sunday, I guess. I do obsess sometimes, wondering when the hell I'm going to be hungry again. But mostly it is getting easier. It's funny to be paying so much attention to my body. I've ignored or hated it for so long.

That's what I'm doing. I'm trying not to worry too much about the other rules or even what I eat at this point. Although, I will say, old habits die hard. I am still obsessed with what I eat and how I eat it and I am trying to implement all the rules.

We'll see how it goes but oh, I want to be normal around food. And hating and shaming and bullying myself is unlikely to ever have a positive affect so let's give this a go.

Wish me luck!

Saturday, July 17, 2010

July 17, 2010

Diet and Yoga

I was right about yoga class; it was wonderful. Joseph (my favorite yoga teacher ever) was all about me today. This can be good or bad. Today I'm not so sure. When your yoga teacher is all about you, it usually means you will be having a much more difficult practice than you would have. I.e. Can you reach your foot?

No.

*push* Oh look, now you can.

*sob*

So good but painful, I guess. Still he is an amazing teacher. When I open my yoga studio I will definitely make sure he works there.

Ah, the diet. It's going good but I'm thinking about switching to another diet (or lifestyle, as everyone loves to call diets nowadays). I've been reading a lot about primal. The biggest problem with going primal is the minor fact that I am a vegetarian. Yeah, it makes things a bit difficult. But I do eat fish and I do eat eggs so I might give it a go.

When you go primal you can't ever eat any grains at all. No dairy either. You can eat quinoa, beans and fruit occasionally. Mainly you eat fish, eggs, vegetables, nuts and seeds. Love that variety. I don't know. Of course after looking around AndreAnna's site I see there are lots of options for faking not-allowed food. She's made pizza crust and "rice" with cauliflower. She's also made fake oatmeal and pancakes and freaking bread. That doesn't seem so bad. Plus she has amazing before and after pictures. Good Lord, in 3 weeks?

I also had a bit of a breakdown today. I ate a lot of badness. I was fine, perfectly fine until we went out to dinner. Even though I ate fine when I got home I wanted that stupid ice cream stupid Jake got me. Whatever. It happened. All I can do is move on.

Best part of the day

Taking Maggie to visit her grandmother, grandfather and aunt. They love her so much and it's great to see her interacting with them.

Gratitude

I am so grateful I got to go to a yoga class today. See I told you.

Friday, July 16, 2010

July 16, 2010

Diet and Yoga

So yesterday wasn't so great on the food front. I definitely wanted to eat just to eat, which is bad. Today I fought the urge all day. I wonder sometimes if I don't get a little self-destructive the closer I get to my goal. Maybe. . . or maybe I'm just sick of eating fish, veggies, beans, eggs and cheese.

That's the thing: the bad, processed junk is so good. I love it but it hates me. It makes me feel and look like crap. And it truly is addictive.

And speaking of sabotaging (well, we sort of were), Jake bought me a pint of Ben and Jerry's Half Baked. What a punk. I'm on a freaking diet, man!

I did better at doing yoga at home today. I love yoga but it's hard at home. I have to really fight the urge to slack.

In better news, remember when I was buying jeans and I couldn't decide to buy size 6 or 8. Well, I went with 6. . . and now they're too big. Oh happy days. Seriously I feel like crying over that. Size 4 jeans. That's crazy talk. How can I be small enough for that? I do not know but I like it.

Best part of my day

Listening to Maggie's belly laughs while I 'got' her. You know the game: "I'm gonna get you." She laughed so hard. Oh, my baby is so sweet. Or rather my toddler is so sweet.

Gratitude

I am grateful for my podcasts that enable me to do yoga at home (I'm not going to be coming up with my own routine--I mean, I could do it for someone else but not for me). It's nice to know that I don't have to stop Maggie from falling asleep so we can go to my yoga class.

Still, I'm sure tomorrow I'll be grateful for going to my yoga class.

Thursday, July 15, 2010

July 15, 2010

Diet and Yoga

First, I lost again for another low, which is great. Only 9.2 pounds to go. However, I did yoga, ran intervals and did some strength exercises. I guess that was a bit much. Unfortunately I was ravished after that. So instead of my usual beans and veggies for lunch, I ate a few big spoonfuls of peanut butter, several cheese sticks, and one and a half whole grain English muffins. I guess it wasn't horrible but I don't feel so hot about it.

I did yoga at home with a podcast. It's hard for me to do a home practice. I don't know why. Probably because no one is watching.

Best part of my day

Maggie was especially cute today. Probably because I'm stopping the potty training until we get back from our vacation. I decided that as long as we're out for 2-4 hours a day and she's napping another 2-4 hours a day and wearing a diaper while out and while napping, she's unlikely to ever figure it out. So when I get back I'm clearing my schedule so we can be at home in panties, no diapers. Hopefully it won't take too long. I just need to be super consistent; no going out. No playdates, no gym, no nothing. Yikes.

Gratitude

Today I got a letter from the IRS saying I owed them more money. At first I was really upset but then I realized it must be a mistake because I made a payment to them in that exact amount. Phew! Of course, now I have to get in touch with the IRS and straighten the whole thing out but still. . . very grateful.

Wednesday, July 14, 2010

July 14, 2010

South Beach Diet and Yoga

The diet's going great. I'm down to another low, only 9.8 pounds til my main goal. I may want to lose more once I get there but seeing as that's the lowest I've ever been, that's my goal.

Yoga is blissful. I had another great class today. My legs have gotten so strong. I have almost no cellulite on my thighs anymore. Woo hoo!!!

Best part of my day

I love picking Maggie up from daycare after yoga class. She is always so excited. It makes me happy to see her standing there, looking for me. It just makes me feel so happy.

Also I really like being part of a mommy group. It's so nice to have other mommy friends.

Gratitude

I feel so grateful. I have such abundance in my life. I am a lucky woman.

Wednesday, July 7, 2010

July 7, 2010

Happiness Project: Make the choice not to take things personally

I am so bad about this. I seem to love to take things personally. I think I love playing the martyr. If someone is having a bad day and snaps at me I will give them the very obvious silent treatment until they apologize. Cause that's gonna help their day out.

I'm getting better about this but it's definitely something I struggle with. Everything isn't about me!

Day 17 of the South Beach Diet

I gained some today. I think this has a lot to do with being, uh, plugged up. Sorry not trying to be graphic but that's my best guess.

Best part of the day

Floating in my MIL's pool. Cool water, one of those mesh bottom floats, hot sun, Maya occupied. Bliss

Gratitude

I love my yoga teacher. I make sure nothing gets in the way of going to the three classes he teaches each week. His classes are amazing. They fly by. He's funny. I am so grateful I didn't give up trying to get to the first class of his I went to (I got lost). He is an amazing teacher and I am so grateful to be able to take his classes.

July 6, 2010

Happiness Project: Hug, kiss and touch more

Again, pretty self-explanatory. I know that skin to skin touch releases feel-good, bonding hormones (which is why mommies are told to hold their naked babies against their bare chests). So more touch is always good, in any relationship.

Day 16 of the South Beach Diet

Uh, doing well. I think I lost another 0.2 pound. Woo hoo! Closing in.

Best part of my day

R and I took Maggie to a petting zoo today. It was so cute watching her interact with all the little animals. The funniest part was when she got pecked by a chicken. It didn't hurt but her reaction was so shocked.

She also kicked a cow. R put her near the cow but was holding her up so she could pet him. She started kicking and got him in the face. Poor guy. R pet him a lot as an apology.

Gratitude

I am so grateful for my yoga practice. I love it. I love feeling (and seeing) my body get stronger. I love knowing I can go deeper into a pose or hold it longer. I love flowing through the class. I love, love yoga. Although I'm not at my pre-preggo weight yet, my body (I think) looks amazing, especially my back, arms and shoulders. I feel absolutely amazing.

Monday, July 5, 2010

July 5, 2010

Happiness Project: Say thank you, I love you and I'm sorry more

The thank you goes along with some of my other posts. Cultivate an attitude of gratitude.

I love you is obvious. You can never tell the people you love that too much, especially children. I try to say it often.

I'm sorry. Why is it so hard to say? When I'm wrong, I need to admit I'm wrong. Even if I'm not the only one who is wrong. I shouldn't spend so damn much time worrying about what every body else is doing. I need to keep my side of the street clean and stop worrying and pointing fingers.

Day 15 of the South Beach Diet

Down another 0.6, I think. Woo hoo! I'm at an all-time low for this diet. Plus I actually lost weight while out of town. Seriously that has never ever happened to me.

Best part of the day

Maggie was in a much better mood today. It's amazing how much I love spending time with her. Even when she's being a little stinker, she's still so much fun. I love her so much and feel so lucky to be her mother.

Gratitude

I went to my yoga class this morning. They changed the time from noon to 10am and for whatever reason the teacher didn't show. But it just so happened that a woman that had been there to take the class was a yoga teacher and she taught our class.

When she first started I thought the class was going to be super easy and boring. But it really snuck up on me. I was sweating hard by then end of class, which is always nice.

Sunday, July 4, 2010

July 4, 2010

Happiness Project: Always be grateful

This one is easy when I can remember it. There is almost always a positive outlook when you are having a hard time.

Thank God I left on time or this traffic would have made me late.

Thank God R and I are learning more about each other through this argument.

Thank God Maggie's lungs are so healthy.

There's so much to be grateful and sometimes I forget that I surrounded by abundance. I have a huge family that I love. I have in-laws that I love. I have friends, co-workers, etc. I have my daughter and boyfriend. My home, my car, my clothes. I live in a stable country. I am quite safe. R and I both have jobs. We have college educations. We are so amazingly lucky.

Day 13 of the South Beach Diet

Well I went out of town and didn't cheat. It's amazing to me how much I connect vacation and bingeing. As soon as we got on the road I wanted to stop for fast food, ice cream, snacks, etc. I wanted to eat big every where we went. And it was quite plain that it was just an association thing for me. That's just what I do on road trips and vacations. Which, uh, wow, that's bad. Except I didn't this time. I ate my food that I made at home and brought. I ate nuts and cheese too. I am so proud of myself for not crumbling in the face of temptation. It's hard to do.

I didn't have my scale out there so I don't know what I weigh. Even though I didn't eat any differently I am convinced I will have gained since Saturday. I'm not sure why. Maybe because I've never gone anywhere and not gained but who knows. I guess we'll see in the morning.

Best part of my day

Maggie peed in the potty again today. She didn't go in her diaper almost at all over the past 36 hours or so. When we got home and I put her on her potty (I brought her potty with us but she wouldn't use it), she peed big time. She's getting it. I may have a potty trained daughter soon.

Gratitude

I'm so grateful for my family. I'm grateful I got to stop by and see my grandma's grave. I'm grateful for everything I have.

Saturday, July 3, 2010

July 3, 2010

Happiness Project: Smile

I wrote this one because I have seen a ton of research on how good it is to smile. How it lifts your mood and the mood of those around you. And truly what could be easier. If you feel sad, smile. If you feel angry, smile. It can be hard to do, but it definitely works.

Day 12 of the South Beach Diet

Today was tough. We were at a barbeque with all kinds of yummy looking food and I wanted to dive in elbows deep. But I would have been so sad if I had done that. So far, so good.

Also, I maintained my weight from yesterday, which is fine. Oddly enough this is the first time I've maintained. I've either gained or lost every other day. It's not as good as a loss but it's a heck of a lot better than a gain.

Best part of the day

I had an amazing yoga class again but what was so great was that I got up extra early for it. I was tired when the alarm went off but I got up, got dressed and went to yoga. I feel very proud of my self.

Gratitude

My family. I'm out here with tons of family. Close family, extended family. I love family get-togethers, which is funny because I hated them as a kid (well, a teen). But I just love seeing everyone and Maggie getting to see everyone. It's a great thing to have lots of family.

Friday, July 2, 2010

July 2, 2010

Happiness Project: Focus on the Positive

This is so hard for me. I'm not sure why because every time I do it I think wow this really works and yet I always think it won't work. It won't do to not point out R was wrong about something. It won't do to CHOOSE not to take something personally. It won't do to notice the gorgeous weather and not the bugs. But when I do this it makes me so much happier.

One way that I've found that makes it easier for to remember this is to try to say thank you a lot. And not just to people but, I guess, to God or the universe.

Thank you for this green light.

Thanks you for this great find.

I am so grateful that this yoga class is so hard that my face is soaked in sweat and body is shaking.

I am so grateful I have this moment with my daughter.

When you are constantly saying thank you, it makes it much easier to focus on the positive.

Day 11 of the South Beach Diet

I lost another 0.6 pound. Woo hoo! Definitely going in the right direction now.

I also figured out that I was, unknowingly, eating an off-list food. I was eating low carb yogurt for my dairy every day and it turns out you aren't supposed to do that. So yesterday I switched to low-fat cheese, which is specifically mentioned on his allowed list.

Best part of the day

Maggie peed in the potty today!!! We're on day 5 of potty training boot camp and she did it. We only had one accident (and she was with Daddy--he isn't with her all day so he might have missed something). She also had one success (our first). I was so happy I let her watch cartoons (we never watch any TV) for hours today.

My yoga class was amazing. At one point I went to wipe a bead of sweat that was heading for my eye and when I touched my face I realized the entire thing was soaking wet. I've never been sweaty like that not even when I took hot yoga. How is that possible?

Also guess what size Gap jeans I fit into today. Go on guess. 10? No. 8? No. 6? F*ck yeah!!! Size 6 with 12 pounds to go. I am so freaking happy about this, you have no idea.

Gratitude

I think I'm growing a little. I had a perfect opportunity to say I told you so to R. Several days ago he wanted to know why we weren't staying two days with my family for the fourth of July. I told him because I thought he worked. And made this big deal about how no one works on that day because it's a major federal holiday. I told him that people do work and that I was pretty sure he had no days off until later in the year (they get a lot of time off at Christmas/NYE but very little through the rest of the year).

Then today my uncle asked me if we wanted to stay. I told him to ask R but that it was fine with me. Then after a while, I texted Jake to find out what the deal was and he said we weren't staying Sunday. I didn't ask why but about 10 minutes later I got a text saying (wait for it. . . ) he did have to work. And I didn't write back: I f*cking told you so, sucker!

Growth people, real growth.

Thursday, July 1, 2010

July 1, 2010

Day 10 of the South Beach Diet

Well, I'm back down to my original low on this diet. I lost a pound. Very exciting stuff. 12.8 pounds to go.

Best part of the day

We've got a 3 parter today. My first best part was when Maggie and I went to tumbling class this morning. We did all the activities. I tried to really back off today and see how much she could do on her own. I'm still heavily involved and helping and guiding, I just tried to do that less. She still did really well. At the beginning when they sing and do motions, she just sat there. I think she only did one thing the whole time. I don't think she understood that part. But the rest of it: she did great.

Second best part of my day was my yoga class. I know, I know. I'm obsessed with yoga. But I love it. I met two nice women who also go to my yoga class so that was nice.

Third best part of my day was getting a facial this evening. It was the last part of a gift certificate that R got me. It was blissful. Amazing. Wonderful. Oh, it was so awesome.

Gratitude

I read a post today about a sick child. Or rather a child that is behind developmentally. I cannot even imagine having to deal with that. Having to think about Maggie dealing with that. I am so grateful that she is a healthy child. I know that everyone has their thing; something that holds them back or whatever. And she'll have something just like every other child. But oh, for now I'm so glad she is healthy.

Wednesday, June 30, 2010

June 30, 2010

Day 9 of the South Beach Diet

Well I'm down 0.2 pound, which is better than gaining. Maybe I should have only weighed myself at the end of the 2 weeks.

I should write a little about the food. It's still so easy. I'm amazed at how not difficult or frustrating it is. I don't feel deprived at all. It really is an awesome diet and I am healthier. And eventually I will lose this last 14 pounds. I know it wants to stay but dammit it's going.

Best part of my day

Yoga was amazing today. It's not even hot yoga and I had sweat dripping down my face, my arms, my legs. I seriously got my ass handed to me.

Maggie was so happy today. It was great. She was laughing and being silly. I love her so much. Her silky curly hair. Her sweet baby face. Her belly laugh. I am the luckiest Mommy in the whole world.

Gratitude

I had visitors today. My Dad came over to see Maggie and me. Mostly he sat around and waited for Maggie to wake up but we did talk a lot about our upcoming vacation to Maine.

My stepdad came over too. He was only here to air up the tires on my bike. I know that sounds silly, but well, it's a long story. But I am so grateful to be able to ride my again. Although not today because it's raining. Stupid rain.

Then my friend Lisa came over and hung out. She doesn't have kids and I think she was a little shocked about being around a toddler. Maggie was in full form; climbing, yelling, laughing, not to mention she peed right next to Lisa. I can see how that might be a little shocking. I tried to calm Maggie and definitely kept her off of Lisa. I gave Lisa a towel to separate them in case Maya peed. Lisa was very sweet to her but I could tell she was surprised. I am too. Toddlers are f*cking crazy and they never stop.

Tuesday, June 29, 2010

June 29, 2010

Day 8 of the South Beach Diet

AAHH!!! I gained again. I've decided to cut out olive oil (I get plenty of good fats) and add lots and lots of water. Also I will try to eat less at each meal.

Last night I went and got a pedicure and the lady doing it asked me if I was having a boy or a girl. I had just finished a big dinner that included lots of beans (if you catch my drift), but good Lord. That sucks. I've never been asked that before and I weigh 30 pounds less now than I did at my highest (not pregnant).

Best part of my day

I am addicted to my yoga classes. I think I'm going to focus on going to all yoga class for now. I am loving it. I'll probably still run a couple of times a week just to get in some good cardio (and hopefully fat/weight loss) but mostly yoga.

Yoga is truly the best workout. Usually you do yoga in one of two ways. Short holds or long holds. Short holds mean you hold every pose for a short amount of time but move quickly between poses. This makes your heart pound and is great cardio. Plus you get strength and flexibility and relaxation. The other kind is long holds. You move slower but hold the poses until you are pretty sure you are going to die. We did this kind today. I definitely got my heart rate up and my muscles were burning. Plus I still get the flexibility, the balance, the relaxation, the works. It's the perfect work out.

Gratitude

Maggie is potty training. We're on day 2 and it sucks. I very much don't like it. She also threw her first temper tantrum today. It was less than fun, although I did video tape some of it. Which I feel really guilty about. What a mean bitch.

Wait what does this have to do with gratitude? Oh, right. I am grateful that. . . I don't know. Not sure what I was going for.

I'm grateful for my funny daughter. We have been going through old videos and labeling and organizing them. When people ask her questions in the videos she tries to answer them. It is so cute. She also yells and waves at the people in the video. I love watching them with her. It's so sweet. Especially when someone in the video tells her to dance so she starts dancing.

Monday, June 28, 2010

June 28, 2010

Day 8 of the South Beach Diet

Um, I gained another 0.8 pound. I'm thinking something is wrong. To gain a pound in a couple of days insinuates I'm doing something wrong. Elaine has done the SB diet before so I'll ask her opinion.

She thinks it's just fluctuation and not to worry about it. I guess I'll see how it goes for the next little while. I'll probably lose tomorrow no matter what because I only had two meals and two snacks today (although I'll probably have a third snack). I didn't have time for breakfast because we had to go pick up my car (I did have snack). After working out I wasn't hungry and I kept forgetting to make something. I finally had breakfast at about 12.30pm and had been up since 7am. Whoops.

Best part of my day

I had visitors today. My Mom came over this morning and Elaine came over this afternoon. It's always nice to have company.

Gratitude

I conquered not one but two technologies today. First, I figured how to burn CDs (which has been on my to do list for about a year). It took forever because I thought I was doing it right and went through the whole 45 minute process and no. I had to start over on my laptop.

Then I figured out how to get more videos on the Internet so my family can see video of Maya. Turns out you have to delete old ones to make room for new ones. I had no idea.

Woo hoo!

Sunday, June 27, 2010

June 27, 2010

Surprisingly my sunburn that looked pretty bad last night is almost gone this morning. I am perplexed; I thought sunburns got worse the next day. Whatever. Now I'm mostly brown with a bit of red. I'm pretty sure I didn't put on sunblock often enough. Well, obviously.

I decided to go through my dressers last night (and my closet today) and clear out everything that is too big or something I'm never going to wear. I can't believe how much more room I have. Plus I discovered clothes I'd forgotten I had. Ah, uncluttering is a wonderful thing.

Day 7/End of Week 1 on the South Beach Diet

I gained 0.2 pound, which WTF. I'm not upset about it; I'm just surprised. I was hungry all day yesterday because we were out so I didn't have constant access to food. And I exercised and floated in a pool, I thought I'd for sure have a loss. But still not that horrible. Especially considering I still lost 7 pounds this first week. I am shocked. I can't believe that. That's amazing. I am becoming a spokesperson for SB diet. 7 pounds!

Best part of the day

Ok, I was a total grumpalumpagus today. But I did go to a really hard yoga class. This guy kicked my rear. That was a great part of the day.

Also when Maggie got up from her second nap, R brought in the room with us. She kept saying hi mommy and pretty mommy and giving me kisses. And she was just in a great mood. I'd say she's definitely feeling better.

Which means it's time to start potty training again. Yikes.

Gratitude

People who are kind to parents. There are two parts to this. One is that parents (or rather, children) are often discriminated against. People don't like them and don't tend to want them around unless they are related to them. While I've never noticed them (I'm not really the type to notice), I've heard of parents getting dirty looks.

Now I'm not talking about the parent who brings their baby and toddler to a midnight showing of Pineapple Express (true story!). That's ridiculous. I'm talking about being in the grocery store or any store. Being at the post office. Not when your kid is throwing a giant tantrum but just being a kid.

People that are still kind to my child mean a lot to me. I often worry that people are judging every move I make when I'm with my daughter and a kind smile or word goes really far.

The second is a fact. It's hard to do anything with a child in tow. Maybe that is less true as children get older but my daughter isn't yet 2 and it has consistently been true for me. Doing anything and everything is exponentially harder when she's with me. I have to carry her, her stuff, watch her constantly, etc. It's hard. When R, Maggie and I flew back from Atlanta, the bags took forever to show up. Finally we decided that R would go get the car and I would get the bags. Then we'd meet up.

We had only packed one huge bag and I was holding Maya. As soon as the alarm went off a man walked up and asked me if I thought I'd be able to get my bag. I said oh of course no problem. Even though I was thinking oh Lord I don't know. He got his bag well before I did but he waited until I made a move for my bag, then jumped in and grabbed it.

I can see how some people might be offended by this (or maybe I've just read too many feminist rants) but I thought it was so kind. He knew it would be hard for me to get a bag while holding a toddler. I couldn't really put her down in an airport baggage claim area filled with people and less than 3 feet from a door. So he waited politely and helped. That is true kindness.

Saturday, June 26, 2010

June 26, 2010

Last night R and I had a big fight about scheduling, etc. He was annoyed that I had scheduled something that required him to be home at a certain time without consulting him. I guess he's right but it does annoy me. I hate that he can schedule anything anytime because he just assumes I'll be with Maggie but I can't schedule anything ever without a consult because I can't make the same assumption.

When he got home (we argued via phone), everything was fine. Then ironically he went out (having never mentioned it to me) with his best friend and his BF's fiance to see a movie. I wasn't too irritated (although the irony was pretty thick) because I needed to clean and I was pretty tired since Maggie had woken me up at 6.30am yesterday.

Sometime in the night (probably around 11-1), R came home. He woke me up to tell me that he was sorry and he shouldn't have gone out and he realized that he was making decisions as a single guy instead of a family guy. We talked for a while about a ton of stuff. I really want to write all about it but it was really personal so I won't. Suffice to say it made me feel so much better about everything. It was truly an amazing talk. I love R so much. And he can be so guarded and closed off and combative. I don't know if he's ever opened up to me like that.

Moving on. . .

Day 6 of the South Beach Diet

I lost another 0.6 pound for a grand total of 7.2 pounds lost in the FIRST week. Wow. I am super excited about that!

I bought a pair of jeans online yesterday. I wasn't sure if I should or not. I only have one pair and it's not the greatest. Everything else is too big. But see, I have more I want to lose so I'm hesitant to spend money on something just to turn around and spend more money later. But still I need a pair. So I went on overstock.com and found a pair of very cheap on sale jeans and bought them. I think I got an exceptional deal because I think these jeans are very popular and usually expensive. They are called Seven something and I think I've heard of them.

I'm pretty sore today from yesterday's yoga class. I love it. I love yoga. I've been thinking about that a lot.

I've spent the past year (well, really the past 10 years) trying to figure out what I want to do with my life. I ended up a teacher and while I love my students and my co-workers, I don't feel like it's my passion. So I've been trying to figure out what it my passion; what should I be doing. And the past few weeks, I think maybe I've had a bit of a breakthrough.

I've always wanted to own something. A doggy day care, a health store, a restaurant, something. And then I started thinking about becoming a personal trainer. But now I'm thinking about becoming a yoga teacher and eventually opening a yoga studio. I'm not sure. It's a big goal. I already feel unsure. The first thing I'd need to do would be to establish a regular yoga practice. I can afford to get a yoga membership (it would hurt but not horribly) but who would watch Maggie. The place I want to go to finally opened a studio near me (a sign?) but the best classes are during the day so again who to watch Maggie? Especially since I'd need to go most days, if not every day. I don't know; I need to give it more thought. Much more thought.

Best part of the day

We went out to R's Mom's house and swam all afternoon. It was blissful. I laid in the floaty thingy and it was so nice and relaxing and I am so tired now. Which is nice. I forgot how much the sun wears you out.

Gratitude

I'm grateful for my MIL (sort of--sort of MIL, not sort of grateful). I really do get along with her and genuinely like her. With all the horror stories about MIL/DIL relationships, I feel really lucky to get along so well with her.

Speaking of MIL horror stories, I have a friend whose MIL, when she met her for the first time, told her, "Oh no, you are too fat to date my son." What can you possibly say to that?

Friday, June 25, 2010

June 25, 2010

Day 5 of South Beach Diet
I lost another 1.2 pound today. Wow. Oh, wait I donated blood yesterday. That's probably more impressive than it should be. Well, I guess they only take a pint. I don't know. Either way, woo hoo!

I'm supposed to work out today but I'm not sure what to do. I'm scared to lift weights because you are supposed to wait 24 hours after donating before doing any heavy lifting. I am always so scared of hurting my arm after donating. I'm thinking of doing a Zumba class. That's all cardio, no lifting. I was going to do a yoga class but that has lifting using your body weight.

Later:
Problem solved! I decided to go to the Zumba class but I forgot it wasn't at my usual gym but at one further away. So when I was ready to go, it suddenly occurred to me that I wouldn't make it. So yoga it was. I googled the address and left.

Google totally f*cked me. It sent me to some tiny street in a different town. Somehow I managed to find my way to the class, sign Maggie up for the daycare and get to the class only 15 minutes late. I felt horrible coming in late. So rude.

Best Part of the day

Continuing from above because this class was awesome and the best part of my day. First, the class was huge. I was shocked when I saw how big the room was and packed wall to wall. I accidentally touched and was touched by the lady next to me several times. It was crazy. But it took me about two seconds to figure out why. It was one of the best yoga classes I've ever taken. I absolutely loved it. It was hard but I felt amazing. I will definitely be going back.

Gratitude


I am grateful today for my home. I love my house. I love improving it every day. I do little tiny things and they add up to make such a big difference after a while. Just keeping it clean and tidy make such a difference.

I love my neighborhood. We live on a beautiful cul-de-sac with huge trees and friendly people. I know both of my neighbors quite well.

I love all my windows. I open all the blinds in the house and there is so much light. The living room has giant windows and the sun room is almost all windows. I love it.

I love this home. I love this family. I love that it is ours.

Thursday, June 24, 2010

Too much internet?

I've been thinking more about something I wrote about a few days ago. How much internet time is too much? Not even thinking about the time it's taking away from my daughter, how much is too much?

I worry that I'm obsessed or addicted to the internet. I feel like I need to check if I'm near a computer. The best way for me to really spend time with my daughter is to leave the house because otherwise I'll be tempted to sit down and check email and blogs and this and that. That seems less than good, you know.

I don't own a phone that can connect to the internet because, if I did, good Lord I wouldn't be able to do anything else. It's best to keep my internet sequestered.

The funny thing is I always feel a little bit superior when I can say, "Oh we don't have cable so we can't watch TV unless it's a DVD." I probably watch less than 2 hours of TV a week but I'm the computer for hours every single day. There is absolutely no difference.

I'm thinking about putting time limits on my daily internet time. Like I can get on 3 times a day for no more than 45 minutes per time. God, how sad is it that I need to cut my internet time down to 2 hours and 15 minutes. Of course, I don't actually know how much time I spend on the internet. Maybe it's already about there.

More than anything I want it to be something I think less about. I want to play with my daughter without running to check on the computer.

June 24, 2010

Day 4 of the South Beach diet
I lost another 0.8 pound today. Woo hoo!!! Very exciting stuff. It's still going quite well. Ironically I read a short article (well, skimmed) about detoxing diets and they said when you ditch the sugar, you can experience bad withdrawal symptoms for up to 2 weeks. Wow. I've noticed minor headaches but it's definitely much better. Here's hoping it stays that way.

When school ended, my Mom was so upset that she wouldn't be watching Maggie every day anymore (because for some reason she is not able to come to my house). So I offered to bring her over and let her stay the day once every week. My Mom was thrilled and quite grateful.

So starting last week, I brought her over and she stayed about 5 or 6 hours. Then today, which would have been the second time, they canceled because my Mom has had a migraine for 2 days and is going to the ER.

First, good Lord. Always sick. They are always sick. I bet the ER folks know them on a first name basis.

Second, you couldn't have given me any notice. They called this morning. I got the message as I was driving over there. Because I had this day, I've been packing it full of stuff that isn't convenient to have a baby at. So I had to find someone else to watch Maggie and cancel some stuff. Come on Mom. Geez.

Third, a few hours later my stepdad called me and said they would keep her early next week and I said I couldn't do that because of stuff we have planned but she could come again on Thursday. And, well he didn't say anything outright but I think he was mad. He was a little gruffy and said something about how much they missed her. It annoys me. It's not like we're in China. She's right here, just come over. Or join us when we go out. I'm not keeping her from anyone.

I hope I don't sound ungrateful. I'm not. I am very grateful that my Mom keeps her and I'm even grateful for the day I have to run errands without a toddler in tow. But come on. I'm just annoyed.

Best part of the day

Maggie's tumbling class. I really think I like it more than her. She likes it but I freaking adore it. Watching the little ones run around and do their little activities. It's just so cute and sweet. She did so well today. I was so proud. Well actually I guess she did fuss a lot but still she did most of the stuff and she was tired.

My little mama is getting so big. She's definitely starting up the terrible two's. She a little early though. I'm getting much more attitude although, the grandparents get it even worse. I guess you have to be firm or she'll run wild.

Gratitude

I donated blood today. And I'm grateful that my blood will help people. It's a weird thing to think about but possibly my blood could save someone's life. Probably not but it will help. I'm grateful that I'm able to do this. It's such a small thing to do. It hurts a little but it's quick and you get to sit back and (mostly) relax. And the payback is that someone gets vital medical help. That's a pretty nice return on your deposit.

Wednesday, June 23, 2010

June 23, 2010

Day 3 of South Beach Diet

So far, so good. It's really not that hard and the more I think about it, the more I think how easy it would be to stay on this for life. Not Phase 1, just the diet. Instead of walking into a restaurant and thinking, "I need to eat healthy," (which, ha ha ha!, yeah right) you walk in and think, "I need to eat mainly lean protein (where can I not find grilled fish?), veggies and beans. Cheese is ok too. How hard could that be? Of course, I should point out, that I haven't actually been to a restaurant since I started this. But still I feel confident.

I lost 0.6 pounds since yesterday. And I was a little sad about that. Oh, poor me only losing more than half a pound in one day. So sad. Gah! Get a grip.

On that note, I cannot let go of thinking about calories and worrying about eating too much. Why am I such a freak? I've actually stopped eating because I was full at like 3 meals. That's unheard of for me. I never stop until my plate is clean or I'm going to vomit. I'm proud of myself for that but I'm still doing a lot of panicking. Although I guess I should just see how things go. If I continue losing weight at a sensible pace then obviously I'm doing fine. If not, then I can adjust. Emergency solved. What a drama queen.

Best part of the day

I love being so productive. Today I made food for Maggie and I all day. I cleaned the kitchen, my floors (vacuumed and swept the entire living area--foyer, office, kitchen, dining room, sun room, living room, hallway and bar) and my bedroom. I did a load of laundry (washed, dried, folded/hung up). I cleaned the litterboxes and brushed both cats. I spent for-freaking-ever picking out pictures for my new scrapbooks and pictures that I haven't gone through and bought yet (the whole time I had to tell myself, "You are not wasting time, this needs to be done," while I also berated myself for wasting time). I designed and printed covers for 9 scrapbooks AND researched and found some cheap scrapbooks for my project. I dropped off some clothes at the tailor and took Maggie to the science museum.

Wow this list makes me feel like a rock star. Although honestly I need to spend a little less time doing all this stuff and more time with Maggie. I feel like I'm a little too excited about getting everything done and not spending enough time with her. God this parenting gig is tough. You can't win for losing sometimes.

But then again maybe I do. I don't know. I feel like I'm doing something else a lot of the time. You know she's playing by me but I'm also reading or on the computer and that doesn't count. I beat myself up for this more than anything. And I feel like I'm cheating her all the time. I have this time with her and I should be spending the vast majority of it with her, completely focused on whatever we're doing. Why is that so hard?

Also I haven't exercised today so I'm feeling guilty about that. I should be able to take the dog on a walk or walk on the treadmill tonight so maybe I won't have to feel bad about that.

Still all in all, a freaking fantastic day.

Gratitude

I'm grateful for my body and my health. Last Saturday I was in a yoga class and I noticed a man outside the windows working out. He was on crutches. When I looked closer, I could see he only had one leg. And he's still at the gym working out.

I have a healthy body. I have no pain when I work out (no bad pain) other than the occasional twinge from my hips (and that tends to happen when you fracture both of your legs in 3 places). I am able to work out. Imagine having asthma that prevents you from exercise or being paralyzed from the neck down. Or having newborn triplets and can't leave the house. Or having 3 jobs and can't find the time. It's a blessing that any fad workout class or whatever, I can try without worrying I'll hurt myself. I can do anything I want.

And that's a blessing.

Tuesday, June 22, 2010

June 22, 2010

Day 2 of South Beach diet. I lost 4 pounds since yesterday. As nice as that was to see, I don't think it means too much. I mean that was probably mostly bloat, but still it was a nice way to start the day.

I have had a headache all day despite taking medication. Also my stomach hurt after lunch. Although I was out in Texas heat and when I got home and drank some water, I felt much better. Anyway, I was reading about Linda doing the Paleo diet (which is pretty similar to the SB diet except they also have very little or no dairy) and she talked about having bad headaches for the first few days. She did some research on it and came to the conclusion that she was probably experiencing withdrawal from sugar. I wonder. . .

Today's life rule: Be the kind of woman I want Maggie to be.

I think about this a lot. I want to model for Maggie what I want for her. Which means respecting myself, living with passion, being responsible, taking care of myself, etc. Those are huge goals. It's not always possible (I don't think) to live the ideal. But it certainly is a major motivator to try. Maggie will probably be more like me than I would like so it's important that I'm showing her as much good as I can.

Best part of the day: R apologized! When he came home, I immediately asked him to do something for me and he snapped at me. I've been trying to lay off when he first comes home. I know I hate being bothered the second I come in the door and R is worse than I am. If I give him about half an hour or so to decompress, he's fine. Either way he shouldn't have snapped at me and it really pissed me off. I decided to just walk away and let it go rather than start a big fight. Then about half an hour later, he came up to me and said he was sorry and gave me a kiss. This is so unlike R (the apologizing), which is bad, but it feels like improvement, which is good.

Gratitude: I haven't written about R in a while. Things are better between us than they have been in a very long time. I am trying so much harder at being more loving and less nagging. It's not always easy. It is so much easier to be annoyed at him, to snap at him, to ignore him. Engaging with him (in a good way), not letting myself get angry, letting go, not taking every little thing personal, etc. is the hard part. But I can't expect him to do these things if I won't. Being in a relationship is hard. It is so much harder than I ever understood. But it's worth it.

I tend to have a martyr-ish personality and I love being able to say oh look at all I do and why are you so horrible. But good Lord who is going to respond positively to that. I mean seriously. I can make such a huge difference in my relationship. Why is this so surprising to me?

I am constantly proving things I've heard over and over right. You hear things like attitude is a choice and I am the master of my fate. I tell my students this, I tell myself this and yet when I see the proof of it in my life, I am always surprised. I guess life experience is the best teacher. Of course that only works if you can be open to learning your lesson.

Which is not to say that R is perfect. Far from it. But worrying about R's imperfections is unlikely to help our relationship. I read a magazine article that put it beautifully. Basically any relationship is an equation: a+b=c. I am a, R is b and our relationship is c. In this equation, I cannot change b. So if I want c to change what's the ONLY thing I can do? Change a; in other words, change me. R may snap at me or not do what I think he should do or whatever but I have to choose to engage.

A great example of this: When R's dad, R Senior, flew to Atlanta for his other son's graduation. At the airport, he had a bottle of water. The security guy told him, "You can either go back outside, finish your drink and come back through security or you can throw it away." So R says, "Well I'm not going back outside." I guess the security agent was in a bad mood because R said he got very combative and said something like are we gonna have a problem. Now seriously how many people would have gotten pissed and snapped at that guy? Considering how many altercations I've had with security people, I'm pretty sure I would have (although I hope I wouldn't anymore; I hope fights with security people are over). But R's dad said, "Sir, I think you misunderstood me. I meant I'll throw the drink away."

He was laughing as he told the story but really, what a great guy he is. He really is kind to everyone and incredibly polite.

Back to R Junior, he's been really great. I really do love him and want to make a life with him. Which is a great thing to be grateful for today.

Monday, June 21, 2010

June 21, 2010

Remember how I was going to write about my life rules (is that what I called them?) and then stopped. I completely forgot. Whoops. But now I remember so. . .

The days are long but the years are short.

Oh good Lord. The first time I heard this it hit me like a ton of bricks. It is so freaking true. A bad day or really even a good day can seem like an eternity. But you look up and your infant is talking and walking and pretending to talk on her phone. How does that happen?

Being a mom is wonderful. I am happier as a mom than I am at anything else. And I never thought that would be true for me. I honestly didn't think this level of happiness and love existed. I thought it was made up for cheesy novels. And yet I feel it for my daughter.

But the flip side is that parenting can also be monotonous and boring and tedious. Not all the time. But there are times when it so is. I mean think about it: Maggie is not even 2 years old. Everything is completely new to her. So she is quite thrilled to sit and look at a book for an hour. Or a block. And not really an hour. In reality she's running from thing to thing and I am chasing after but she usually doesn't even really notice I'm there because she's doing her own thing that makes sense to her but I'm thinking WTF. But of course then I blink and she's getting her driver's license. You can't save time or get it back. She'll never nurse again. I'll never swaddle her again. She'll never be tiny again. We can only move forward. And every single day takes her further and further away from me. I'm going to cry.

New topic. So I started my first day of the South Beach diet today. So far, it seems easy enough. Nothing too difficult. I felt better today. Although after one day, really what can I say? After the carb/sugar/bad fat/fried crap/sweet crap overload I've been on, anything would have been better. Still I'll try to update regularly to keep track of this whole thing.

I also went to an exercise class that's all strength. Holy freaking crap. My arms were shaking so bad and I purposely got really lite weights for just in case. Thank the Lord cause holy cow the class was hard. But I do feel like I can't wait to go again.

Best part of my day: Cuddling with Maggie. She lays her head on my chest and wraps her arms and legs around me. I talk to her, sing to her, rub her back, stroke her hair. I love it so much. I sniff her and just breathe her in.

Gratitude: Today I'm going to go with family. I love family. I love holidays and get-togethers. I think of books and movies and thinking oh I love family scenes and the idea of families. But really I have that. I love my family.

Thursday, June 17, 2010

June 17, 2010

I'm planning on starting the South Beach diet next week. I'm very excited about it. I've never actually gone on a diet before. Not like a real diet plan and followed it. I've lost about 20 pounds and been stuck here a while so I thought I'd try something else. Plus I think sugar is pretty evil and I like the idea of detoxing off that.

I turned 28 this week. Which is crazy. Life is going by so freaking fast. It felt like it took a million years to get to 18 and the ten years since then have passed in the blink of an eye. How does that happen?

I finally went to an exercise class at the gym and brought Maggie with me. I hadn't been going because I was nervous about putting her in the gym day care. Why am I always so silly about stuff like this? It was fine. No, it was great. I had a great, fun work out (that I'm paying for every month!) and she had fun with the other kids and toys and stuff. We're going to another class in the morning.

I'm having a big Father's Day brunch on Sunday. I'm not really nervous about it this time. This is the third big party I've thrown. The first two were narrowly avoided disasters (and only avoided because of wonderful, kind-hearted Elaine) but the third was great. I didn't go overboard and try to do too much and I was laid back the whole time. I'm going into this one with the same attitude and I'm sure it'll be great. I'm actually really looking forward to it. I'm making 3 different kinds of muffins and 3 different kinds of pancakes. Which I guess seems like a lot but, even made from scratch, muffins and pancakes are super easy.

Also my stepbrother, whom I haven't seen in about 10 years is coming. That'll be nice. He's married and has a daughter, who is 3. I'm looking forward to meeting them. And how fun will it be to have another little girl there.

Speaking of other little girls, Elaine's baby is a girl!!! I'm so excited. I cannot wait for that little baby to get here. I'm so excited for all of it. The birth, the shower, the baby. Oh, the baby.

Best part of my day: Maggie's tumbling class. It's so much fun. Watching her do the activities and especially this time to see her understand better and participate more was great. She just laughs and runs and we have so much fun together. I love it!

Gratitude: I'm so grateful for everything. For my clean house, for my family, my daughter, my pets, my life. I am so lucky in so many ways. Sometimes I forget how lucky I am.

Friday, June 11, 2010

June 11, 2010

Life Rule: Doing a little bit every day is better than doing it all at once. Or never.

I wrote about this a couple of days ago, I think. Basically I have bad habit of thinking I can get everything done and then do nothing forever. But what always ends up happening is that I get my couple of "free" days and then I never want to do it again. Then I let things build up so that just the thought of working on something is so overwhelming, I avoid it altogether. So I'm trying to do things every day. To rid myself of the idea of having days off. Life needs to be lived daily. Things like cleaning up after yourself, getting dressed, exercising and eating well should be done daily. They should just be a part of life.

I struggle with this is so many ways. The more I write, the more I think of other ways this manifests itself in my life. I guess this might end up being something I work on for the rest of my life. It's one of those things that even though I know how much happier and how much more satisfied this makes me, I constantly have to fight to remind myself to do this.

Best part of the day: I had a birthday dinner with part of my family. My sister and brother-in-law, my Dad, my stepmom and my other sister were all there. Along with Maggie and I (R had to work.). It was nice being around people. Elaine is now noticeably pregnant, which is so exciting. Well actually it's not all that noticeable but I did see it when she moved a certain way. Very exciting.

Gratitude: I'm grateful I have the summer off. Although I do sometimes have a harder time when I have unstructured time, I'm trying really hard to be proactive and keep myself productive. It's such a waste to not enjoy this time off. And so far, this summer, every day has been great. Every day has been productive. I have exercised and eaten well every day. I have been happy every day. It really is such a gift to have this time to enjoy my daughter and live my life.

Thursday, June 10, 2010

June 10, 2010

One of the things in the Happiness Project is the idea of having sort of Life Rules that you live by. I've created a few and I like the idea. But I have a tendency to not think about that sort of thing. Even if I read over the list daily, I'm afraid it wouldn't really sink in, you know. So I thought maybe I could write about my Rules to try and remind myself why I picked them and what they mean to me.

So my first Rule is: Love is all you need. I made this rule because I think that I tend to keep score in relationships. I.e. I did x, so I'm not talking to you until you do y. Even though I haven't told you that. It's a horrible trait and I'm actually really bad about it, especially with R. So my goal is to always remember that I love R and treat him that way. Not just R but everyone. Love is, in my opinion, the meaning of life. Not only romantic love but the love we have for our kids, our friends, our family. I need to be doing everything I can to show my love. Life is short and if you miss your chance, it's gone. I want everyone I love to know that I love them.

Best part of the day: I had another wonderfully productive day, which is always so fabulous. But for my best part, definitely Maggie's tumbling class. It was so cute watching her do all the little things. It was more involved than I thought and I did the whole thing with her. We had so much fun.

Gratitude: My baby is all better. She's ravenous but she's well. It's so nice to my sweet, funny little girl back. She's starting doing silly little things, like pinching noses and making little jokes. I am so lucky to have such a sweet baby. I love her so, so much!

Wednesday, June 9, 2010

June 9, 2010

Gretchen Rubin (The Happiness Project) talks about having a good bad day. Essentially it's a bad day but you still get stuff done, you don't go crazy and yell at people, etc. Today was a good bad day. I got a lot of stuff done. Not everything but a lot. I exercised. I ran errands. I cleaned. I organized. I didn't yell at anyone or anything else that I feel guilty about. She's right it's much better this way.

I had never thought of doing things this way. I have always kind of thought, if you are having a bad day you deserve a break. Slack off, eat whatever, don't work out, don't do anything, or talk to anyone. So on and so forth. But then I end up feeling lazy, unproductive, out of control, antisocial, fat, etc. Not so great feelings. And when you are already having a bad day, why add more badness?

I'm not going to write about why I'm having a bad day. Why think about it or preserve it for years to come? Better to remember the good stuff, than the trivial B.S.

Best part of my day: I got to talk to Elaine a lot today. Elaine is probably my favorite person to talk to. I always get her and know what she means and she always gets me and knows what I mean. It's one of those effortless relationships that are so rewarding. Hopefully her being laid off means we'll get to spend a lot of time together this summer. Fingers crossed.

I'm really glad that I can look back over my day and know that I got stuff done, that I didn't binge on a pint of ice cream or scream at my ultra-whiny baby. It feels really good to think, well it wasn't the best day but I cleaned, I ran a few errands, I marked some things off my to do list, I exercised and I cleaned the litterbox.

Gratitude: After my GG died in January, the family got together to start cleaning out her house. My Mom wanted us to take a ton of stuff but most of us declined. We did all take some things. I filled a little tote bag with some letters, a book, some pictures, two purses, a ring for Maggie and a jacket. I brought the tote bag home and I haven't really touched it. I just haven't wanted to look at the things, you know. Today I decided to go through it. I pulled out the jacket and went to hang it up. On impulse I put it up to my nose and inhaled. And it was like she was right there. I didn't even know GG had a smell but there it was. Like sweet baby powder. After I cried, I kept thinking how can preserve this so the smell won't go away. But it will. No matter what I do, it will go away and there will be no way to get it back.

GG was a tough lady. She took no bullshit and was hard to deal with sometimes. But I really loved her. She would sit in her blue chair or on her little love seat sometimes and I would sit on the couch and she would tell me stories. Stories about everything. My childhood, her childhood, my mother's childhood. Her first marriage to my grandfather, my parent's marriage, my Mom's current husband, everything. And I loved it. I loved hearing all her stories. She always made me sandwiches. Tuna, pimento cheese, chicken salad (when I used to eat meat). She had these funny little spreaders for that. Like knives with no blade, just to scoop and spread. And these coaster with a little sidecar for pills or your spoon.

I just miss her. I'll remember she's gone and try to bargain it away. Like that's not possible because x, y and z. But it is true. I just really wish it wasn't.

Tuesday, June 8, 2010

June 8, 2010

I'm still very interesting in this whole eating thing. I've been thinking about it and it's not just when I overeat or "cheat," it's also with regular meals. I look so forward to eating and, when I notice, I feel disappointed after. And it's not that I'm sad the food is gone, it's something else.

I guess I would have to figure out what I do get from eating. Or maybe not. I don't know. I'm quite perplexed.

Best part of the day: It's been a pretty darn good day. I've gotten a ton of stuff done. Maggie is feeling much better. Watching Maggie play with my cell phone is so cute. She says hello, who is it. And it's always her grandpa (my Dad) and she tells him stuff (although I usually can't understand). She does ask him how he is. It's so stinkin' precious.

We played in the backyard and I let my cat come out too. She attacked some small animal but I'm pretty sure it escaped. Greenlee, kitty hunter.

It's a gorgeous sunny day.

Gratitude: I'm grateful I was productive today. I'm grateful I got up on time. I'm grateful I was able to go to the grocery store. I'm grateful I worked out and will hopefully be good sore tomorrow. I'm grateful my baby girl is getting better and other than being very whiny this afternoon she's been great all day. I'm grateful I got to talk to my sister today even if she didn't call with the best news :(. I'm grateful she'll be having a baby soon! I'm grateful I've given up on the Lord of the Rings trilogy. I know it's hugely popular but, for me, what a snooze fest. I'm most of the way through Fellowship of the Ring and other than a few parts it's just been so overwhelmingly boring. Now I'm reading a relationship book as recommended by R's and my counselor. I guess that's it.