Wednesday, December 31, 2008

Monson

Monson turned 16 on Monday....and we celebrated by (Wayne and I) going on a double date with Monson and his girlfriend.
Sunday she was a friend-girl....Monday, a girl-friend.

We went to Texas Road House and then a movie. It was fun....?
Monson has always been mature in ways beyond his years. Liking girls is one of these ways. He considers himself a "ladies man." I just want him to be a mamma's boy.

I remember what a darling, google-faced baby he was. So smiley. He looked like a little leprechaun. He was charming, and many people asked to hold him. I would hand them a bath towel to drape over their body, then the baby. He was big on projectile vomiting. After being thrown up on, these same people didn't ask to hold him any more.

I remember him being 3 years old. It was just Monson and me, all of the other boys were in school. We were driving around Bountiful. He had a little smug, contented look on his face. I asked him what he was thinking about?
He replied, " I'm just thinking how cool I am."
He really said that----at three years old.
This has been his mantra ever since.

At 8 years old, Monson asked for a tuxedo for his birthday....that's all. OH yeah, he wanted a monkey too, but I had to draw the line somewhere. He was thrilled when he opened his one present, and it was a beautiful black tuxedo with studded shirt. He wore it to his baptism. He wore it to church every week. He wore it to his 2nd grade school program. All of the other kids had their run around-just in from recess clothes on. But Monson, made me bring the tuxedo and he changed in the car. He knew the "girls would love it." He was right. (I cried all the way through that program, like it was a funeral or something.)

For Monson's 3rd grade talent show, he wore a fedora hat, a Hawaiian shirt and sang "Luck be a Lady Tonight" from Guys and Dolls.
It was amazing....and sweet and man was he Cool.

It was really weird for me to be on this date. I got sick on the food-- had a stomach ache all of the way through the movie and went straight to bed upon returning home.

Maybe it wasn't the food.....maybe I was just "sick" thinking about my youngest son DATING! Sick that he was holding hands. Sick about change. Sick about getting old. Sick ........ oh well, I'll get over it.

I'm looking forward to the new year with excitement and maybe more double dating opportunities with my other boys.

Sunday, December 28, 2008

I love nativities


I love nativities.
I got one from Wayne the first year we were married for Christmas. It's a Precious Moments one. I display it with honor every year, all by itself, on the piano. It means the world to me. That's the year we had no money and for Christmas all we were going to get was 4 new tires for the car.....but Wayne sneaked in the nativity too.
I cried.
I love nativities.
I'm not really a nativity collector like Laura Belnap or Carol Merrill, but I have my fair share.
I love watching my boys and now Laila play with the nativity pieces and move them around so they can see the baby Jesus better. This playing with, inevitably leads to chips, cracks, and broken pieces.
I have some broken angels, shepherds,wisemen and donkeys to different nativities through out the years. I just pull out the super glue and try to piece the ceramic back as best I can. I don't throw nativities away. I think the broken pieces add character and a much needed analogy:
We come broken to the Savior and he "fixes" us and sees us as perfect.

I've left my big statuary-one out in front of my home. This began 3 years ago when Landon said, "Please leave baby Jesus up until I go on my mission." This would have been in the summer. I thought, "why not."
I left the statues in place for months, then a year went by, and finally Landon allowed me to take it down.
We both cried.
I liked having the nativity up all year though as a reminder. So I've continued doing this. I've left a quilted one and a snowman nativity out on my antique sewing machine top in my dining room the past 2 years. It's lovely to dust it and walk past it, and have my thoughts taken back to the greatest gift.


Addison sculpted a "shy-little-troll-kids- posing-as-Mary- and-Joseph-in-a
-pageant-with-a -crying-Jesus -ready-to-cry- themselves," Nativity for my mom and dad for Christmas. Their response to it was classic JOY!

Nativities bring out the best in people....they help us center our thoughts on the Christ Child.

This year I'm trying to decide which one deserves the honor.

(I just wrote an entire post and didn't mention food or eating once.
YEAH for me!)

Saturday, December 27, 2008

I treadmilled it!

I woke up today with new resolve. I got on my treadmill-- went for 20 minutes and then took some cold medicine...and now I'm sweaty and my head is pounding from congestion....but the good news is I exercised.
Wayne called it my new resolution.
It's really just the continuing saga of my old resolution.

The holidays keep coming.
We took the kids and one friend each to the movies and out to dinner yesterday. It really was fun. We saw Bedtime stories with Adam Sandler...and it was cute. There was something in it for everyone. Then off to Joy Luck for Chinese. I, of course, ate too much theatre popcorn and walnut shrimp....then two Carol Merrill brownies I found on Laura's cupboard. MMMMmmmmm

But today....for the past 3 hours...I have had resolve.

I am so ready to take down my Christmas decorations...and move forward to the next event. Monson's 16th birthday on Monday. Cake and Ice cream and Dinner.....
Then New Years Eve and New Years Day and Wayne's Birthday on Jan. 7th and Truman's 18th birthday on Jan. 21 and Laila's on Jan. 22-- the Eating events just keep coming.

I need more resolve.....

I think I'll stop writing and go do some sit ups.

Friday, December 26, 2008

Annual Christmas Bloat

I am now suffering from my yearly after Christmas holiday bloat. I've eaten 20 shrimps too many, a dozen cookies too much. Handfuls of Good Junk and Muddy buddies and Rice krispie treats.....I'm on cereal overload.
I've hammed too much ham and stuffed too much stuffing. I've had hot cocoa, and sweet rolls and hot rolls galore. Tried all of the homemade chocolates, and goodies that have arrived at my door. (Hey, that rhymes. I've eaten so much I'm now Dr. Seuss)
Suffice it to say, I'm really good at eating through the holidays.
It's part of the festivities....right next to decorations, and Christmas music.

"IT's the most wonderful time of the year."

We had a great Christmas morning. It began just after 7:30am when Wayne and I jumped out of bed in "heart attack" mode, because we heard a little girl's voice coming from the vicinity of the living room saying, "Yeah, Santa came." It was actually Addison practicing his falsetto. It really did get our hearts started. We thought Laila was in the living room, already opening presents.

We bleary-eyed it through present opening, and then the eating began.
French Toast and bacon, followed by more sweets.
I did throw two oranges into the eating mix yesterday-- although they were only clementines, baby oranges, that don't really count.
"I'm trying to have my fruits every day"-- I tell my self this as I drink my 4th glass of cranberry juice spiked with sprite.

The year is almost at an end.....
In the next few weeks I will get my act together, and go back in time to August when I wondered out loud, "How did I get to weigh 164 pounds...?"
Well I'm back there again, and I'm not really wondering....I acknowledge every tasty morsel that have passed my lips.

Ah......Christmas!

Wednesday, December 24, 2008

Christmas Cookies

Christmas cookies are so, well...... Christmasy!
We just got a big tray delivered from one of Monson's girlfriends, and we have been smiling ever since.
Getting little remembrances of love and friendship at Christmas is always nice.
I love little neighbor gifts. Treats, notes, stories, calendars, candy, hot cocoa....it's all good.
Some years I'm better at this neighbor gift tradition than others.
This year Wayne brought home a bunch of steak knives, so some neighbors are getting knives with a note..."We're not very SHARP, so let's CUT right to the POINT....Merry Christmas!"
I have given extension cords with-- "Extending you the warmest wishes, Merry Christmas".
I have given tissue boxes with -- "We 'tissue' a Merry Christmas."
I've given a 2 litre of Sprite-- "May your days be merry and Sprite."
You can probably see the pattern.
I usually give an object that can be purchased....not FOOD that I've made.
The boys have pretty much banned me from cooking treats and giving them away. If I know I'm giving it away, the treat usually "fails".
I've resorted to cereal cooking-- Good Junk and Muddy Buddies.....all out of Chex Mix.
Yeah for cereal recipes.
These are hard to mess up.
This year I branched out a bit, and for a few neighbors, gave Muddy Buddies, that we called Reindeer food.
It's great to have neighbors who like you whether you give them something or not....and who bring Christmas Cookies.

Monday, December 22, 2008

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Art for Arts sake




My Addison is an artist!
This is true in every sense of the word.
He is colorful, eccentric, funny, introspective, willing, obsessed, passionate, great story teller, creative, forgetful, enthusiastic......you get the idea. He gets so involved in his "stuff" that he forgets to eat. It will be the end of the day, and he won't feel good-- and then remember,"Oh, yeah, I haven't eaten ALL DAY. " ( I don't relate)
I tease him that he is sooooo right brained that his head should be mis-shapen. His right side should be huge and his left side all shriveled up.
It really is a miracle that he has made it this far in school -- those math classes are kil ler s for him.

It is so fun to watch him create, and be creative.

Addison loves the theatre and wants to be an actor on stage and screen.
Theatre is his major at school, and he plans on being very successful.
He loves to sing and has a beautiful voice. It gets better and better as he matures.
Musical theatre is his passion. He is currently in Peter Pan at Weber State in Jan/Feb. and then Musical of Musicals at the Grand Theatre in Feb/March.
Addison is great at pencil sketches and drawings. He paints and now has found a new passion...sculpting.
He wandered around Tai Pan Trading with me at Halloween time, and saw all of these little elves and Santas , and knew he could make his own....even better. So he bought some clay and started. He became consumed by it...drawing little pictures, dreaming about nose and ear shapes, staying up to the wee hours of the morning doing his thing.

He finished some elf heads and I gave them away to family for Christmas gifts on Sat. night.
They were all thrilled.
The oohs' and ahhs and sweet laughter made the art all worth it for me.
Just the doing of the Elves , makes it worth it to Addison.
Addison is an Artist.

Friday, December 19, 2008

Crying through the Holidays

I knew I was having "one of those Sundays"-- when I started crying while talking to a friend during early morning choir practice. Tears came easily as I described , once again, how amazing it was that Laura even made it home from China. ( 4 fractures in her pelvis, 3 torn ligaments in her hip, torn hamstring and 2 broken toes) It really was a miracle.
The crying continued as we sang the ward choir program. It's not fair when the choir director starts crying during the first few chords of "Were you there?"
I love to sing out of my music and have the words memorized, so I can look at the choir director. But it's not fair to have the director crying-- then I'm choking up.
I look beyond her, to stop my tears, and see my friend Laura sitting in her wheel chair in the back singing along-- now I'm really crying. I have to get it together. I really just want to sit down and give into my tears and sob my heart out....but couldn't...shouldn't.....didn't.
I really felt the spirit.
The ward choir Christmas program is one of the highlights of my Christmas season.
I love music and the spirit it brings.

I'm crying through the holidays-- as usual.
Cried in the boy's Christmas concert.
Cried at Laila's little drama program.
Cried at the Marley and Me preview.
Cried as I listened to the radio and the need for more Sub for Santa this year
Cried as I drove down the hill listening to Christmas music
We have our family Christmas dinner today with me, Wayne, all my kids and my mom and dad. Then we are off to the Welch family Christmas party with all of Wayne's family, featuring gingerbread boy decorating, more eating, and a sweet nativity.
I plan on crying through that now too.

Thursday, December 18, 2008

Christmas Cooking

Came home from Truman and Monson's two holiday choir concerts totally in the mood to cook!
Deck the Halls with Boughs of Holly.....I sang as my cooking night began.
My foodie-friend, Si, inspired me on her blog and I gathered all of the ingredients to make Fresh Cranberry (English) Scones with Almond cream.

MMMMMMmmmmmm!
I know you are thinking...is this diet food? Is this going to be healthy? These sound healthy because of two words: Cranberry and Almond......... AND....I was only going to eat one.

I had the fresh cranberries, flour, baking powder, eggs, buttermilk....oh, wait, no buttermilk-- how do I make fake buttermilk. Looked on line-- "add lemon juice or vinegar or cream of tartar to whole milk and let sit for 5 to 10 minutes, then use."
Great...I can do this. I wonder how old this bottle of lemon juice is? No whole milk...1% will have to do.
I begin to chop the cranberries.
My those little, red, round balls are slippery. Hard to chop. Berries are flying all over the floor. Rinse and reuse. I'm making a mess on the front of my shirt. Need an apron. Where is an apron? When's the last time I used an apron?
No apron.
Back to the mixing.
I put all of the ingredients in a bowl...follow the recipe "exactly" -- well tried to.
Patted the berry studded dough into a 10 inch circle. Cut 8 wedges. Sprayed my baking sheet.
"Sprinkle on Turbinado sugar....."

What the "H" is Turbinado sugar?
(I picked up letter swearing on my recent China trip-- thanks Laura and Kimi...it's not good....and I'm going to stop.)
I used granulated sugar.....
Okay...The scones looked pretty good to me at this point. They looked "English" to me-- white, pasty , red bumpy complexion, you get the idea.
Baked them off-- 15 minutes at 400 degrees.

My house smelled divine at 10pm. The boys were salivating and commenting on their mothers cooking prowess. The UMOZ-- delights her children once again.
Scones....not so divine.
Took a few bites. My kids took a few bites. Picked the cranberries out. Took a few nibbles more.
Hmmm?
Didn't cook long enough? Something wrong with my oven? Maybe the buttermilk was the issue...or the special T- sugar? Who knows. Threw the rest away.
I Didn't even make it to the Almond whip cream stage.
FA- la- la -la -la-la-la-la-la!

Wednesday, December 17, 2008

Tortoise and the Hare


I have exercised twice this week!
I pulled myself out of my 24 day slump , wriggled into my sports bra, strapped on my sneakers and headed to the dungeon. ( my dark basement)
Two days on the treadmill and I'm feeling pretty good about myself.

I don't know why I get so far off the exercise "wagon" that I can't even find it....but I've repented and I'm BACK!

The tortoise and the hare fable is really appropriate for me.
Remember the fable about the tortoise and the hare? The hare got off to a zippy start and seemed sure to win the race. But he didn't, did he? The tortoise, while naturally much slower than the hare, kept moving steadily towards the finish line and was able to cross first.

I am the frenzied hare.....I jump in with my whole heart, empty my cupboards of guilty pleasure food, and set up diet and exercise charts- knowing I am totally motivated, and the pounds are just going to melt away-- Only to be tripped up and never reach the finish line, because "it's just not fun anymore."

I need to be the tortoise.
SLOW AND STEADY WINS THE RACE
(That needs to be my new motto.....)

A great day of exercise followed by a few cookies later shouldn't derail my thin dreams.

Human beings are imperfect.

It's inevitable that I will eventually skip a workout or give in to temptation, and feel like a failure and want to give up entirely — trade the all for the nothing.
I need tortoise thinking....Pace myself.
As long as I don't stray too far from the exercise path, I should reach my goals.
I'm planning on Exercise day #3

Tuesday, December 16, 2008

Photoshop and Garbage Trucks


I'm thankful for PHOTOSHOP.

We had family pics taken....big 30 people family pictures taken. We had to get it done before my nephew flew off to a mission in New Zealand...and we only had night time. Family pictures are stressful anyway, and don't bring out the best in any of us.... and these were no different.

We tried many ideas of where to set up, and finally decided the stage at the high school would suffice. Well....the bright spotlights, and the black curtain, just didn't make for the best pictures. BUT....photoshop is amazing. We can lighten up hair, darken faces, get rid of wrinkles and big but-t-s...you get the idea.

I could make a billion dollars if I could figure out how to photoshop real life...not just pictures. It's great to live in denial.

I'm thankful for Garbage trucks.

Think about it. You put your crap on the curb and a man drives up and hauls it away for you. Does it get better than that?

Mine comes on Wednesdays.

I'm loving this concept.

The DI sends a truck around too, periodically......If I don't want to wait for them, I just load it in my car and get that beautiful de-junked feeling any time I want-.

Dieting would be so great if it was like this.....just decide, time to get rid of this fat bu tt or that jelly belly , and then a man comes and takes it away in his big noisey truck.


Imagine if we could expand their business to haul away EMOTIONAL crap! Now that would be something.


Monday, December 15, 2008

PMS and Periods---- (Warning Sensitive material follows)


My period started 4 days early, while in China, and lasted over a week! I blame it on the 11 airplane flights and my body not knowing what time it was for quite a while. But still, where's the fairness in an 8 day period?
Where is the fairness in even having a period when I'm well beyond child "patience" years?

Now...I have PMS---- Post Menstrual Syndrome.... ( I actually had to ask Truman how to spell Menstrual and he knew.....hmmmm?)
I ran out of my DHEA...my lifesaver....and I'm screaming at everyone and anyone who gets in my way....particularly if you are under 4 feet tall....
I actually have had my PMS symptoms totally handled for the last 2 years thanks to DHEA-- and I can't believe I let myself run out of it. I had my CHINA stash in a baggy, but I didn't remember that my bottle was empty....and now my family all gets to suffer.

10 days to CHRISTMAS......BAAAAAAAH!!

I'm eating everything in sight....
I'm bloated...nothing fits.... okay all of the Christmas goodie eating might be the reason for this, but who knows?
I'm mad......
I'm sad....
I'm bad...
I have tooo much to do..... maybe taking a 13 day vacay right before the BIG holiday, wasn't such great timing?

I'm.......BAAAAHHH!

I'll take 2 DHEA and be better in the morning..

Friday, December 12, 2008

2 types of people

There are people who will eat Chinese food in China and people who opt for McDonald's in China or nothing. I tried to be only in the first group on this latest Beijing excursion....but I had to dip my toe into McDonald's land 3 times-- just to survive. MCDonald's fries have never tasted so good.

While getting the little cancer cut out of my chest this morning, I was watching "What about Bob" for the 100th time....and I was reminded of one of my favorite movie lines, "There are 2 types of people, those who like Neil Diamond and those who don't."

I like to classify people into groups as well. I find it helpful to compartmentalize. .... Mainly things like... people who like dark chocolate and those who don't, people who eat stale DOTS, and those who don't. It's either you do or you don't, you will or you won't. You get the idea.

Here are some more ideas to think about:

People who'll eat food that's fallen on the floor and those that won't

People who love Musical Theatre and those who won't step foot in a theatre

Adults who order off of a kids menu and those who won't

Self home repairers and those who hire it done

People who only take home baked desserts to ward parties, and people who purchase store bought

Old mom's with young kids and Young mom's with young kids

People who eat American cheese and people who only fish with it

People who love vegetables and those who consider ketchup a vegetable

Those who know the Color Code and are enlightened because of it and those who think yellow is the color of the sun, blue is the color of the sky, red is fire and white is peace.

People who can go potty anywhere i.e. squatters in China, and those who need pristine situations and toilet seat covers

Those who volunteer at the Grade school and those who don't

It's interesting to think about this. I like "typing" people......it helps me.
What will or won't you do.....?

Thursday, December 11, 2008

8 tag

I'm sharing my 8 tag today....if you want to play....go ahead. I'm not good at the normal way of "tagging" in blogging.
Like everything else, I do it my way.

8 favorite "diet" foods
1-yogurt
2-apples
3-tuna
4-diet hot cocoa
5-celery with peanut butter
6- rhubarb pie
7-bread pudding
8- chocolate cheesecake
(I know the last 3 are not diet foods....don't care....I got sick just looking at the first 5 and got off track)

8 TV shows I love to watch
1-The Office
2-Dancing with the Stars
3-American Idol
4-So you think you can Dance
5-30 Rock
6-Extreme Home Makeover
7-Samantha Who
8-Gilmore Girls--- off the air, but watch it in syndication

8 Places I love to eat
1- Mandarin
2- Si's
3- Baja Cantina
4- Texas Road House
5- Zinns Bistro
6- My mom's
7- The Roof
8- Marie Callendar's for dessert only

8 Things that happened yesterday
1-Saw 'Twilight" with girlfriends
2-blogged
3-created Christmas gifts online
4-went to 2 Christmas choir concerts for Truman--- slept through one.
5- did a Washonline school "Millionaire" game.
6-cried with a friend
7-lost Laila and Preston after school
8-watched Wayne de-viruse my big computer

8 Things I look forward to
1- A clean house
2- maid service
3- Christmas morning
4- Vacation with my family
5- World Traveling
6- Eating (I have such an unhealthy relationship with food...)
7- Remodeled Kitchen
8- Being in good shape....i.e. losing last 20 pounds

8 Things I love about WINTER
1- Snow clinging to tree branches
2-Sweaters
3-no more cracked summer feet
4- sparkly snow on sunny days
5- Fire in the fireplace
6-Hot Bread and Soup
7- No more worrying about watering the flower pots--leaf raking, or yard work
8- Snuggling with my family members and watching movies together

8 Things on my wish list
1- Remodeled Kitchen ( I really want this-- can you tell?)
2- New windows through out my cold house
3- European Vacation
4- Disneyland with Laila
5- Being in a Show
6-Peace with world and with self
7- Machu Pichu , Peru
8- No more dizzy dude!!!

Wednesday, December 10, 2008

Poor Oprah

Poor Oprah---- having to confess a one year , 40 pound weight gain to millions of people over the airwaves.
WOW!!!!
Now that's painful
I only have to confess my ups and downs with weight to a few interested bloggers.
Once again dealing with the question-- why does weight matter?
Oprah has everything money can buy-- and she is still unhappy with her body because of her weight.
I know some people don't care about this.
I know some people aren't obsessed with the scale.
I know some people don't think about food, or what they are going to eat next.
Well I'm not some people
Call me Oprah

Tuesday, December 9, 2008

What did I do today?

What have I done today? ( heavy sigh)
I made pancakes , eggs, sausage and bacon with Laila for dinner. I made peach crisp for Addison and Landon for a treat. Oh,.... and I made cookie dough for Monson. Food wise, Truman was the only non demanding child.

I had Laila on my lap for most of this day, she needed lot's of attention. She is sick again and is coughing, wheezing and throwing up. Hopefully we will have a better day tomorrow. She sits on my lap and tells me how much she loves me and kisses my neck, and pets my hair.

My kids have me all figured out.
If any of my boys want money or a favor from me they say, "H ey hottie. " or "Former Super model......" They think they can appeal to my vanity and I'll give them anything......they are mostly correct.
Laila tells me things like, "You are so cute, you don't need makeup." or "Good job at getting rid of your gray hair." or "Your the best mom in the whole wide world."
The last one is usually said when I give in to her demands and cute pouty lip and feed her and her 2 friends mint chip ice cream at 5:30pm -- right before their mothers pick them up for dinner....heee heee.

Mother hood is interesting.
I love being a mother.....I would love if my clothes fit me better while I am being a mother, but being a mom is nice.

Some day all my kids will be gone. I know this.
But on this day....I have kids eating everything in sight, scavenging through the cupboards, kids arguing about who shoveled the most and least amounts of snow today, and a kid rocking my body back and forth and putting necklaces soaked in spit on my face.
Infact, as I try to type this I have Laila wiggling the dining room table my lap top is sitting on asking me if I "can type while on a wavey boat at sea? " Love it.

Okay, I know what I did today. ( Sweet smile)

Sunday, December 7, 2008

Holiday party eating tips

I have the trees decorated-- well one half way decorated, but I'm calling it "done." My nativities are out and I'm starting to get in the Christmas mood.
I have so much to do if I'm going to get anything ordered on line this year....cards to figure out, books to make etc....
I'm through with the jet lag and now I only have my tiredness to blame on staying up too late while talking to my teen agers and my sick little Laila.
Christmas is here !!! I know this because I'm dreaming of what food I'm going to be eating a the next party.
Alas, Egg nog and soft sugar cookies are definitely dancing in my head.
My friend sent me this amazing list of do's and don'ts for holiday eating.
Enjoy!!!

As the holidays begin, I wanted to pass these tips along to you. Enjoy the spirit of the festivities.


1. Avoid carrot sticks. Anyone who puts carrots on a holiday buffet table knows nothing of the Christmas spirit. In fact, if you see carrots, leave immediately. Go next door, where they're serving rum balls.


2. Drink as much eggnog as you can. And quickly. It's rare.. You cannot find it any other time of year but now. So drink up! Who cares that it has 10,000 calories in every sip? It's not as if you're going to turn into an eggnog-alcoholic or something. It's a treat. Enjoy it. Have one for me. Have two. It's later than you think. It's Christmas!


3. if something comes with gravy, use it. That's the whole point of gravy. Gravy does not stand alone. Pour it on. Make a volcano out of your mashed potatoes. Fill it with gravy. Eat the volcano. Repeat.


4. as for mashed potatoes, always ask if they're made with milk or cream. If it's skim milk, pass. Why bother? It's like buying a sports car with an automatic transmission.


5. Do not have a snack before going to a party in an effort to control your eating. The whole point of going to a Christmas party is to eat other people's food for free. Lots of it. Hello?


6. Under no circumstances should you exercise between now and New Year's. You can do that in January when you have nothing else to do. This is the time for long naps, which you'll need after circling the buffet table while carrying a 10-pound plate of food and that vat of eggnog.


7. If you come across something really good at a buffet table, like frosted Christmas cookies or pralines in the shape and size of Santa, position yourself near them and don't budge. Have as many as you can before becoming the center of attention. They're like a beautiful pair of shoes. If you leave them behind, you're never going to see them again.


8. Same for pies. Apple, Pumpkin, Cream. Have a slice of each. Or if you don't like cream, have two apples and one pumpkin. Always have three. When else do you get to have more than one dessert? Labor Day?


9. Did someone mention fruitcake? Granted, it's loaded with the mandatory celebratory calories, but avoid it at all cost. I mean, have some standards.


10. One final tip: If you don't feel terrible when you leave the party or get up from the table, you haven't been paying attention. Re-read tips; start over, but hurry, January is just around the corner.

Shrinking Grandma

My Grandma is currently the incredible shrinking woman. This once robust ( size 16 ) woman is shrinking before my eyes. I had lunch with her on Friday and came away ....... sad.

I remember her always watching her weight when I was a child and teen ager. She would walk "the loop" around the neighborhood of her house. We felt privileged when we would get the call to go walk with her.
I remember her joining TOPS-- a weight loss group in the 70's. I don't know what it officially stood for, but I always thought it was short for--Tons Of People Starving.

My mom is on the heavy side thanks to menopausal meds and body trauma. She would say she is fat-- I think the chub just makes her skin look awesome. It fills in the creases, so she is very non wrinkly. It's hard to guess her age that's for sure.

My grandma and mom are food pushers. They are only happy, if at the end of a meal-- after everyone has had 2nds or 3rds, there are no leftovers. That means they made enough, and everyone had their fill.
"There's always room for seconds."
" We can't have left overs."
"You need a large piece of cake, you are a growing ."
" If you aren't in pain after eating, have another serving."

When I moan about my weight now, my grandma just scoffs at me.. ..
"Enjoy it, pretty soon you won't even feel like eating. Nothing will sound good and you will just waste away."

I had lunch with Grandma Friday.....I'm not complaining.

Friday, December 5, 2008

China List

China was awesome.
I'm still basking in the fun-ness of it.
Things I learned while in China
1. Take a spare candy bar or package of nuts everywhere you go.
2. Chinese taxi drivers get upset when you try to cram 6 s into a 4 seater.
3. The Great Wall is not just roll-y and easy to walk ....parts of it are straight up for a mile.
4. 11 airplane rides in 12 days makes me tired and draggy.
5. Shopping at the Silk Market in Beijing and at the W mall in Shenzhen means having to buy 2 new suitcases to bring it all home in.
6. Chinese money is easy to spend...it's like monopoly money
7. Keep toilet paper in your purse at all times
8. Squatters are stinky and make my thighs shake ( so much for exercising)
9. Chinese foot and leg massages are HEAVEN-- 90 minutes for $13.00
10. Keep your valuables close...there are pick-pockets on the subway
11. Chinese food can be VERY HOT AND SPICY
12. If it's weird looking and you eat it anyway, don't ask anyone what it is you just ate.

I loved this trip.... I would do it again...but first I want to go to Peru, and Machu Pichu.

Thursday, December 4, 2008

What's up with Chopsticks?

I'm back....and sleepier than ever.
I tried to Blog while in China...but we were traveling too much ( 11 airplane flights in 12 days) , staying up too late, getting up too early, no internet access...you get the drift. The computer was the last thing on my mind.
But.....I'm back.
Here's what I would have written while in China.

What's up with chopsticks? As a diet device...they work great for me. I can't seem to get anything even near the proximity of my mouth with them.
I set a goal to get good at using chopsticks while on this trip.
I was determined to join in the culture and not ever ask for a fork while traveling from Shenzhen to Beijing.
I was pretty good at the first couple of awkward stick squeezing bites, then my hand would cramp up and I would resort to stabbing the food instead. It was always a helpful meal when we had Peking Duck-- I could use the little pancakes for the duck and for all of the other food on the table as well. I could eat all of my food like a burrito....No chopsticks needed.

The first day, I tried some of the hot, hot.....did I say hot as in spicey, Schezhun cuizine. What I could actually taste was good. It was good until the spice kicked in and my head felt like it was going to pop off and my lips were on fire, and my mouth was numb. What's up with that?
At this point I didn't care if I couldn't eat with chopsticks, and I didn't even want a fork. I wanted medical care. I needed a big drink of milk, stat. Oh, that's right-- no milk in China, just soy milk.

The only thing I could think of to do, while in this mouth burning state , was to hoot. I actually let off little/big screams of pain. My eyes were sweating, my face was red.
I was still hungry.
As soon as the firey-numb settled down, I tried a different bite.
Pick up the sticks, try to concentrate on picking up the big piece of unknown-food, have most of it fall off the sticks before it get's to my mouth, end up licking hot spice off the chopsticks instead. The circle of life. Hot burning mouth , sweaty eyes, little screams. Quite the sight. My table mates were laughing-- they obviously didn't eat, what I ate.

Another interesting chinese delicacy is a chicken dish where they don't take the bones out before they chop up the chicken. I don't know this , of course. I toss a piece of chicken in my mouth, and end up spitting out bone schrapnel onto my plate-- along with alot of the meat. Why is this a good idea?

I'm still hungry.

Using chopsticks as a diet device is great in theory.....what actually happened is I wouldn't get enough to eat, then I would just stuff down 2 candy bars after dinner.
Ahhhh, Snickers.

Thursday, November 20, 2008

3 Docs

We went to 3 doctors on Tuesday.
Monson and I went to the dermatologists for mole and skin issues.
Truman went to the Dentist for wisdom teeth and canker issues.
Then at 5:00 that night -- Laila said, "Mom, look at the weird stuff on my tongue." I screamed as I gazed at the large red bumps on the back of her white tongue.
We raced to First Med and found out that she has major Strep....

We went to 3 doctors in one day! What is up with that. This is not planned into my monthly budget. These equal 4 co-pays and $160.00 in prescriptions, add Wayne's bills and Laila's bills and Landon's bills to that, and ..... and all I can say, is thank goodness for Insurance.

Insurance is my friend.
I pay a little bit at the beginning and a little bit more in the middle, then my insurance kicks in and pays the rest.

I wish there was other insurances in life, like Food Insurance or Diet Insurance.
I eat this now, and even though I eat the rest, someone else gets to have the calories.

I Know I'm always reaching for a food or fat analogy....but it would work. All those people starving in Africa can have some of my extra calories and poundages that I don't want to pay for.

The problem is...I'm always searching for analogies as an excuse for not doing what I know I should be doing. MODERATION and EXERCISE.

3 docs in one day....

Wednesday, November 19, 2008

My Foodie Friend

My foodie friend has a birthday next week, and we went to lunch to celebrate it this week, since I'll be in Asia. ... sounding like a world traveler makes me so happy.

I love this woman-- I have won the friend lottery and she is in the POT.

Reasons why I love SI

She knows her way around a kitchen!!
I love her eccentricities with germs and with food places. Where she will and will not eat is fascinating.
She knows how to do everything just "so." (Except she doesn't sew....interesting?)
She is a huge U of U fan and wears red the entire week before a big home game.
She makes the best dinners. There is always a loud cheer from my boys when Si brings the food, or when we get the occasional invite to her home.
I love her recipe blog-- it inspires and infuriates me all at the same time.
I love how she tells a story.
She has a great memory for details.
She has self control...Si can actually order a decadent tiramisu and only eat a few bites, "because it's too rich" and save the rest for later.
She is a giver-- time, talents and food.
She has amazing patience and grace with her children and with the G-man.
She is spiritual and has a strong testimony of the gospel.- she is my tissue supplier for the "weepy" Sunday meetings.
I love how she dresses--she looks great in Black. (seriously)
She knows how to eat all day long and still stay thin. ( This is a mystery to me.)
Si puts up with my weirdness and even laughs at what I say.

So, while SI is celebrating her "Holy Holidays"-- Thanksgiving and Birthday combined,
I'll take a moment of silence and pray and say "thanks for great friends," then I'll eat something weird in her honor.

Tuesday, November 18, 2008

Sun worshiper

Went to the Dermatologist today to have a hard crusty mole on my chest and a weird wart something on the side of my nose checked out-- taken off to be exact. Both appear to be skin cancer--- what? Skin Cancer. That cancer word conjures up all sorts of scary images.
The Doc said it was good I came in when I did. Biopsies will tell us more. Stay out of the sun.

I love the sun.
I'm not a sun worshiper-- but I love the sun.
I'm not a lay-in-the-sun-with-baby-oil- on-my-body-holding-a-piece-of-tin-foil-gal -- but I love the sun.
I love to be warm.
I love getting into a stifling hot car.
Summer is my favorite time of year.
My birthday is in July.
I love closing my eyes and turning to the sun and letting it warm my eye lids . (I love the orangey colors it produces in my head.)
I love swimming and being around a swimming pool.
I love weeks spent outside in Bear Lake and Lake Powell.
I love Beach vacations and Cruises.
I think you are probably getting how much I love the sun......
So just thinking about the "staying out of the sun" directive by my Doc., is kil-ling me.

It's so interesting how past choices affect current situations.
Past sun choices make it so I have parts of my body cut out.
Past food choices make it so I have parts of my body chub out.

The sun isn't all bad-- being in the sun in moderation and sun screen will help out a lot.
Food isn't all bad either-- eating in moderation and not having food be my dr- ug of choice will help a lot, too.

The choice is up to me.

Monday, November 17, 2008

Early Thanksgiving

Our China buds had Thanksgiving dinner yesterday for their families. They didn't want to miss out on Thanksgiving while in China, and have their children all sad-- so they did it early. We did not. Thank goodness I have an extended family that will take care of it for me, while I'm away having fish heads and scorpion on a stick.

(My kids weren't too sad to hear that we wouldn't be here for Thanksgiving because we told them we were going to China over Christmas, which caused a big hallabaloo-- so when we said, "Just joking, we are going over Thanksgiving instead," they didn't complain too much.)

We are having Thanksgiving tonight -- which means leftovers at Belnap's , so I get my Thanksgiving dinner after all, by default.

I love Thanksgiving.
I love the pie part ( of course) and the grateful part and the food part.
In the spirit of the season.....
Here is my SICK OF CHUB THANKFUL list:
1. I'm thankful I don't have to make Thanksgiving dinner-- no 60 pounds of mashed potatoes this year.
2. I'm thankful I've only gained back 3 pounds.....okay 4, but who's counting, since September.
3. I'm thankful I have my Wayne who keeps me on track with my crazy "bribes."
4. I'm thankful for my kitchen. I don't have to cook in it, because it's not remodeled-- and it's not remodeled because I haven't lost my final pounds, and I'm not losing my final pounds because I don't like to cook. Circular reasoning is great!
5. I'm thankful for....legs to walk, and arms to wave and a face that yawns, and a body that moves and choreographs.... and sleeps.
6. I'm thankful for my computer that I can get on and blog to my hearts content.
7. I'm thankful Laila is doing great-- and is almost back to "normal."( this is a relative term-- and none of her relatives are normal.)
8. I'm thankful for my sweet life.
9. I'm thankful for chocolate.
10. I'm thankful.

I'm off to have my left over helpings of turkey and yams. I'll be thinking of you all next Thursday. BE THANKFUL!

Sunday, November 16, 2008

Extrinsic Rewards

I fear I've rained on my weight-woed blogger chicka's parade.

She is trying to be extrinsically motivated, by setting the self-bribe of getting a lap top if she loses her final 25 lbs.
It sounds great!
I'm excited for her if it works, but I know from my past experiences that this doesn't work for me.
Oh, I've promised myself all kinds of things; trips, outfits, massages, pedicures. Then I find that I just go on trips, buy outfits, have massages and get pedicures whether I lose weight or not. I even had Wayne bribe me with a kitchen remodel last year if my scale showed 140 pounds by January.
I still don't have a new kitchen.......hmmmm??
Why can't I do it?
I get all excited for about 20 days, then just wear out. Then, I get mad at Wayne for even suggesting a kitchen remodel reward, when it was all my idea in the first place! I tell myself, "I deserve a new kitchen if I weigh 140 or 160!!- Why is Wayne being so rude? Can you believe him?"
Crazy town!
I hope that the reward system works for other people but it usually ends up feeling like a punishment for me.

Saturday, November 15, 2008

Cooking almost killed me!

I'm reflecting on the GREAT ROAST BEEF tragedy of 2006.
What is this, you ask? Well, this could be one of the many reasons why I gave up cooking and look upon cooking in general as painful....hmmm?

I'm reminded of this tragedy because it happened in November and my friend Si spoke of it recently-- she is either psychic or psycho.
I easily forget about unpleasant experiences, hence, I went through child birth 4 times, before I got smart and adopted. But this unpleasant time....is not easily forgotten.

Cue the spooky music and swirly tv screen as we go back in time....to 2006...

I had just returned from a fun filled weekend to NYC with friends ( Farleys and Fowers) and I was trying to be a "Mom" again and have my children love me by cooking a real Sunday dinner. I raced home from church to get my roast beef out of the oven. My house was smelling just like heaven-- I had some early Christmas tunes on....I had changed into my velour jammies and I was feeling pretty good about myself.

Afterall, I am the "Ultimate Mother of Zion" -- just look at my License Plate.

I opened the oven door, took out the big pot of roast beef with boiling hot au jus-- and kicked the oven door shut. I had done this maneuver hundreds of times. I happen to be very coordinated....but not today. Today I was tired. I hit the pan on the lip of the stove and tipped the contents of the roast beef and juice all over my thighs----- Did I tell you it was boiling hot?

I shiver in pain just thinking about this.....hence, my not thinking about painful experiences motto.

SCREAM!!!!!! SCREAM AND MORE SCREAM!!!!

ANYWAY.....

No one was home.
I had left church early. I knew I was too tired after the NYC trip, and would have slept through SS and RS anyway... so this was the searing punishment I deserved, right?

My being alone was probably a good thing-- I would have scarred my children for life had they experienced their crazy pain filled screaming mommy. I didn't know what to do. How to help
myself. I ran over the hot au jus to the carpet , ripped off my melted velour pants and ran up to the bath tub; filled it with cold water and knelt and screamed in the water as I tried to splash it up onto my thighs.
Any way...one ER trip, morphine, bandaids, tears, salve and knees filled with 2nd and 3rd degree burns later and I was back home.

I would post my burned knees pictures, but they are just gross. I had to heal and salve and scrub and d r- ug myself for about 6 weeks before my bandaids finally came off.

I got a lot of RS dinners because of my pain.....and my house cleaned a time or two, and I had some faith promoting experiences along the way. My knees are mostly fine but it took awhile before I wanted Roast Beef in my home again.

Can you believe the lengths I will go to, to not cook?

Friday, November 14, 2008

Grandma Butters


My Grandma is 93 years old....93! I know I've been writing a lot about age lately, but people around me keep having birthdays....what's up with that?

Anyway, she turned 93 this week.

Grandpa passed away 16 years ago and Grandma still lives alone in the home they built in the 1950's. It's a beautiful home with a swimming pool in the back yard that I have played in, all summer long, for my entire life! We always shared the greatest food around the swimming pool, especially at the 4 summer holidays: Memorial day, 4th of July, Pioneer day and Labor Day. These are the "Holy Holidays" for me, and they wouldn't be the same without Grandma and her pool.
A fond memory I have as a child, is swimming in the pool on a hot summer day and Grandma bringing out hot ,out of the oven, raisin oatmeal cookies. I recall eating as many of these as I wanted, standing in the pool with the chlorine water dripping into my mouth, mixed with the hot cookie. MMMM... it just makes me smile, even now.

My Grandma is an amazing woman. I know she had an entire life before I was born, but this is what I know about her.

Grandma has always been a great dresser! She sang in a quartet and had traveled all over the Mountain-West putting on shows. She wore sparkley, glamorous costumes. She always looked so put together with the perfect hair, makeup and jewelry. Grandma also danced with my Grandpa and did floor shows and put on dance festivals for the church. I loved watching them waltz around and laugh and gaze at each other.
I inherited these quartet/dance costumes about 20 years ago. For one of our cruises, we (Me, Karen and Christine) wore her 60 's outfits for the formal dinner time. -- it was so fun.

Grandma was choir director in her ward for over 40 years-- talk about a life time calling. She had a grand ward choir. Every seat was always filled and extra chairs added in. They would totally do productions at Easter and Christmas time. She had special lighting installed in the chapel, that was built while she was in charge, so they could do mood lighting for the programs. The choir even had individual lights that clipped on the choir music folders, so we could see to sing. I say we, because she invited me to sing in her ward choir for about 10 years. I loved singing under her. She was so expressive and a great musician. Grandma has always been a great support for my singing and drama endeavors. One of my biggest fans.

My grandma is a marvelous cook. She makes the best shredded roast beef and homemade rolls. Grandma has always loved roast beef, strawberries, ginger cream cookies and almonds-- oh, and "sweet aloha." ( Diet Pepsi) These are the foods that I relate with her. She cooked a lot when she was raising her 7 kids and 60 some odd grandkids. Now we take turns cooking for her. It really is an honor to do this. She is so appreciative and welcoming. She will even turn off her FOX news or Matlock and sit and visit.
Grandma will tell it like it is. She doesn't mince words and has an opinion about the world around her and what's happening with current events. She loves the Jazz and a good football game too.
I always wanted a daughter to name after my Grandma.... after 4 boys, I got my wish when Laila blessed our family. Laila is just as much a spitfire as the woman she is named after.
My Grandma has taught me to love-- always-- unconditionally.
People are more important than things.... and...
Gratitude is the key to a happy life.

I pray I can be as healthy and Happy as my sweet Grandma when I turn 93!

Thursday, November 13, 2008

Big Risk

I haven't stepped on my scale since the end of September.....I don't want to be faced with my ballooning reality...
Since leaving the wagon, I have eaten my way through Wayne's operation, Laila's Emergency stay, Halloween, a family wedding and many birthdays.... and lets just say I'm good at eating to avoid my life.

Okay...no more denial. I'm going to leave the computer right now, run upstairs and tackle, er, I mean, jump, on the scale!!

This goes against everything I believe in. First, I am not na- k- ed and I'm not immediately out of bed having gone potty. I am dressed in my walking clothes- brown Velour pants, Ogden 1/2 marathon shirt, sports bra, underwear, running shoes, glasses; I have eaten breakfast--two cookies, an apple and a large water; and I have a full bladder.

But, I'm throwing all caution to the wind and here I go.......

Did you miss me?
Did you hear the scream coming from my upstairs bathroom?

Well it wasn't as bad as it could have been. I am 5 pounds up from my original loss of 8 pounds-- but if I subtract all of the above mentioned from the scale equation, I'm probably only 3 pounds up--- so still a total loss of 5 pounds from where I started in August!! Diet Math is hard.

Let's hear a Yeah for ME!!
Mr. Scale didn't get the best of me today.

What I've learned....avoidance leads to rationalization which leads to self delusion and finally elation.

I avoided the scale. I rationalized that I didn't need to know my weight-- what does it matter anyway? I kept my self in a state of delusion, just wearing my elastic waist clothes and finally I was elated when I jumped on the scale and was only up 3 pounds after 6 "hard" weeks.

Life is funny.

Wednesday, November 12, 2008

Wrinkles

I'm tempted to write something negative and dark....but remembering my November plan of loving myself, I'm staying away from the blues. I'm forcing myself to cheer up....it's what a good parent would tell me.

I have a friend who turns 40 today....WOW...40...ah, yes, I remember it well. That was the year Wayne and I looked at each other and said, " for our birthdays should we go on a cruise or adopt? " Okay there was a bit more conversation and prayer than just this, but in a nutshell that's what happened.
It's amazing how things work out when you turn it over to the Lord.
We were blessed with Laila a few months later-- and my body has yet to recover.
Ah, yes....40....
At 40 I had a "shape." I have a shape now, too-- it's just square and pudgy.

Anyway, back to the positive.

Kimi is turning 40 and I love her. She has always been so great about getting older. She relishes it. She loves finding the newest wrinkle or the gray strand of hair. It might have something to do with the fact that she is constantly mistaken for a teenager....but she is getting older and is fine with it.

"It's a sign of wisdom and maturity. These wrinkles don't just happen, you have to work for them. You have to go through some stuff to get to this old. Wrinkly faces are a sign of character."
I can hear her say these things right now.....

I used to shake my head at her, and think she just doesn't know....but she does know. She is wise even with her one wrinkle.
So I celebrate Kimi today and her wisdom.
Here's to getting older!!

Tuesday, November 11, 2008

The Dreadmill

I love walking with my friends, but when winter and cold weather comes, these walks become fewer and farther between.
Even though it's only November, because of the cold weather and my driving Laila to school now, instead of her walking-- my walking outside time is severely limited and I have resorted to using my treadmill in the dungeon, that's my basement.

It's appropriate that the exercise would take place in a dungeon, don't you think?

I can handle the "dreadmill" for about 20 minutes at a time. 20 minutes that feels like an eternity!
20 minutes to channel surf and try to not think that I am walking/running/climbing in place.
20 minutes alone with the constant whirring of the mill---

When I tread the mill I feel like a rat on a wheel. AAARGHH!!

I'm trying to come up with new inspiring ways, to make my stay on the treadmill last longer.

I've tried the TV thing-- it's okay....I'm better if a movie is on that I'm interested in-- but it's still a struggle.

I'm thinking of mixing it up when I watch TV... ..for example,
1. During commercials I will raise the incline and imagine I'm in the mountain, climbing up to Elephant rock, be very dramatic about it....over act the panting and needing water part.
2. When ever the words, : Obama, recession, weather or traffic come up (As I watch the morning news shows)-- I get to jump off of the treadmill and run to the top of my stairs, have a little snack , and then back down.

Break it up a bit.

I may even add some costumes to this routine-- and a song or two.....just a thought.

I know if I do the treadmill....I can eat my cheese at the end, just like a rat!
That's why I do it....I love Cheese!
RATS!!

Monday, November 10, 2008

Hair Color Diet

I got my hair colored today!
Shout Hallelujah!
As part of my new diet to appreciate myself.....I got colored....and not a moment too soon.
I was really going gray. I didn't look too badly in the house, at night, without too many lights on....but outside in the day, I was gray, gray gray!
Laila kept pointing it out to me.
"Mom, let me see.....yep it's gray." She would hold my head and stare at my hair line as if reading a crystal ball.
(One more step to feeling better about myself.)
It's amazing how the little things in life thrill me......and the big things too, don't get me wrong.
I love getting my hair done. I love feeling pampered and having my head rubbed.
My bro- in-law Gary has been doing my hair for over 20 years. I love him.
He is a great philosopher and hair-guy.
He had a salon once where he did hair and Marcie did nails and all was well.....except not exactly what they wanted to be doing. He got hired away by some big hair companies to be in charge or product development and marketing. Now he travels all over the globe-- Europe etc...and shows color techniques and works on marketing strategies for people in Poland and Germany and such. It's amazing.
I'm lucky though, he still does my hair.
I have to be flexible....I wait around long enough for him to be in town and then get on his very busy schedule . It's worth it to me though. I get colored and my ills get "cured."
Being a hair dresser actually runs in my family. My Bro in law, my Uncle, my Aunt, many neices and even my Grandpa are all Hair dressers.
My Grandpa Butters had a salon from the 30's in Green River Wyoming to the 40's,50's.60's.and 70's with a Salon in downtown SLC-- across from Temple Square.
It was always a treat to go into Grandpa's hair salon as a little and get my hair done.
Grandpa was a "feel good" person--always building me up. I loved him so much. I miss him.
Even on this rainy day, with my sick daughter home from school, my work undone and dishes in the sink, I'm feeling pretty good about myself......thinking about the kindness of my Bro- in- law and my Grandpa.
I'm looking pretty good too.

Sunday, November 9, 2008

Cheers for Veggies

Life is good!
Life is sweet!
I'm going to eat veggies
before I eat treats!!

(A New Cheer I've been trying out.)

I'm trying to find new ways to get my veggies.

I actually like veggies-- I just don't like preparing them. I like most veggies- even squash, but like my problem with fruit....I want my veggies to taste the same every time I eat them. I want my peas to always taste like peas and my carrots to be sweet not woody and always taste like what I want a carrot to taste like. "Eehhh...what's up with that doc?"
I have a love affair with salads-- I will order a salad everytime we go out to eat, and really enjoy it. I actually enjoy the salad toppings the most : cheese, croutons, bacon,fruit, craisens, nuts, yummy dressing, and if I have to eat some lettuce with my toppings, that's okay by me.
I was feeling bad about not having enough veggies, so I tried the Greens to Go drink from Costco....it's great if you like the taste of silage or cold pea soup.
So I guess it's not that great.
Now I've decided to get my vegetables the old fashioned way--V8 juice. I drink one every morning and feel pretty dang good about myself.

My motto concerning vegetables: Eat up-- then I can treat up!!

Saturday, November 8, 2008

Funny Exercise story--not mine

Dear Diary,

For my 60th birthday this year, my daughter Rachel (the dear) purchased a week of personal training at the local health club for me. Although I am still in great shape since being a high school football cheerleader 43 years ago, I decided it would be a good idea to go ahead and give it a try.

I called the club and made my reservations with a personal trainer named Belinda, who identified herself as a 26-year-old aerobics instructor and model for athletic clothing and swim wear. My daughter seemed pleased with my enthusiasm to get started! The club encouraged me to keep a diary to chart my progress.

MONDAY:

Started my day at 6:00 a.m. Tough to get out of bed, but found it was well worth it when I arrived at the health club to find Belinda waiting for me. She is something of a Greek goddess -- blonde hair, dancing eyes and a dazzling white smile. Belinda gave me a tour and showed me the machines. I enjoyed watching the skillful way in which she conducted her aerobics class after my workout today. Very inspiring!

Belinda was encouraging as I did my sit-ups (although my gut was already aching from holding it in the whole time she was around). This is going to be a fantastic week!!

TUESDAY:

I drank a whole pot of coffee, but I finally made it out the door. Belinda made me lie on my back and push a heavy iron bar into the air -- then she put weights on it! My legs were a little wobbly on the treadmill, but I made the full mile. Belinda's rewarding smile made it all worthwhile. I feel GREAT!!

It's a whole new life for me.

WEDNESDAY:

The only way I can brush my teeth is by laying the toothbrush on the counter and moving my mouth back and forth over it. I believe I have a hernia in both pectorals. Driving was okay as long as I didn't try to steer or stop. I parked on top of a GEO in the club parking lot.

THURSDAY:

Belinda was waiting for me with her vampire-like teeth exposed, and her thin, cruel lips were pulled back in a full snarl. I couldn't help being a half an hour late -- it took me that long to tie my shoes. Belinda took me to work out with dumbbells. When she wasn't looking, I ran and hid in the restroom.

She sent some skinny b*tch to find me. Then, as punishment, she put me on the rowing machine -- which I sank.

FRIDAY:

I hate that witch Belinda more than any human being has ever hated any other human being in the history of the world. Stupid, skinny, anemic, anorexic little cheerleader! If there was a part of my body I could move without unbearable pain, I would beat her with it.

Belinda wanted me to work on my triceps. I don't have any triceps!

And if you don't want dents in the floor, don't hand me the darn barbells or anything that weighs more than a sandwich.

The treadmill flung me off and I landed on a health and nutrition teacher. Why couldn't it have been someone softer, like the drama coach or the choir director?

SATURDAY:

Belinda left a message on my answering machine in her grating, shrilly voice, wondering why I didn't show up today. Just hearing her message made me want to smash the machine with my fist. But since I lacked the strength to even use the TV remote control, I ended up catching 11 straight hours of the Weather Channel instead.

SUNDAY:

I'm having the Church van pick me up for services today so I can go and thank GOD that this week is over. I will also pray that next year my daughter Rachel (the little snot) will choose a gift for me that is fun -- like a root canal or a hysterectomy. I still say if God had wanted me to bend over, he would have sprinkled the floor with diamonds!

Friday, November 7, 2008

#8,9,10

I LOVE MYSELF AND I THINK I'M GRAND!
Yeah ME--- there that's my cheer for the day!

I'm connecting with other weight-woe'd bloggers and I have a new friend who has set out a list of rules to live by in trying to lose the pounds. I totally agreed with her list and realize I struggle with the following:

8) Don't eat it if you don't enjoy it. If you're going to eat junk, eat good junk but less of it. Savor it. Let the high quality chocolate melt slowly in your mouth. Slow your eating down in general. It can take up to 20 minutes for your brain to receive the message from your stomach that you're full. Give it time.

9) Enjoy your body as it is. Make sure you have an outfit or two that fit you well as you are now. Don't keep looking at your "skinny clothes" wistfully. Find something that makes you feel good now, in this moment. Your baggy old sweatpants might not be tight on you, but they probably make you feel like crap.

10) Feeling like crap is not an option. This isn't about punishing yourself for getting fat. This isn't about beating on yourself till you get to where you "should" be. This is about treating yourself right. You are amazing already, and you have the potential to be even more so. Take that leap. Treat yourself as if you're already who you want to be, and the end result might surprise you.

So this goes totally well with my "diet" this month, and the idea of parenting myself.

I actually made myself eat an apple today, because that's what a mom does. I even told myself I couldn't have the cookie, until after I ate something healthy.
I've got this parent thing down.
Now if my kids would just listen to me.

Thursday, November 6, 2008

Person in Oven

I don't know if you can read the sign that appears on my oven lately, but it reads,
"Person in OVEN--Don't OPEN!!"
The first time I saw this note, I laughed.
What is a person doing in my oven?
Then I realized it's because Addison is baking his clay faces in the oven and if we open the door before they are done, they will c r -ack.

There is an analogy in here somewhere, somehow....I don't know if I can make the leap, but I'll try.

I'm half baked....I need to stay in my "oven" longer , that's why I'm so cracked.
The oven is the challenges-the heat of this life...."the actual hotness of battle."
When the heat is on, do I give my all? OR ...do I just bask in the warmness and don't do 'nuthin?
I've tried all the actual ways to lose weight( for a few weeks at a time) , but seem to bask more in doing nothing, or eating everything, than in giving my all.

So for The month of November---I'm going to give it my all!
I'm up to the challenge of another diet.
I'm going on the "love my body" diet.
I'm going to stand in front of the mirror every day, clothed or ...which ever is easiest, and tell myself how awesome I am.
I'm going to love myself into submission.
Take over the parent role for this body of mine...protect it, feed it, make sure it gets enough sleep and water. I'm going to make sure that no one makes fun of it ( me) or talks bad about it,
( me again). I'm going to give it treats like pedicures, and hair color and hot-tub baths and trips.

During this season of gratefulness and thanksgiving , I'm going to embrace myself and rejoice.

I've tried all the other diets...maybe this one will work.

Who wants to join me in the oven?....hey there's a person in here!

Wednesday, November 5, 2008

PERKS to Walking

I love to go on walks, vigorous or not, with my friends in the mornings.
I love the chat that goes along with the walk-- it's like therapy with legs. We have solved the world's problems, diagnosed illnesses, cried over our families, debated candidates, given movie reviews, planned vacations , discussed last night's dinner and what is happening with our day to day lives.

I try to walk in good weather and in bad. I want to do this outside with my peeps, because it's better than being on the dreaded treadmill alone--- or the "dreadmill" as my friend calls it.

One time, while strolling...er, I mean, walking quickly-trying to keep our hearts rate up and pumping our arms- on the Boulevard with the ladies, my 22 year old son drove by with his window down , honked his horn and called out, "Hey Hotties." We laughed and shrugged it off. But it did put a smile on all of our faces.
We have heard other honks and "cat calls" while on our walks in the past, but we didn't think they were for us.
NOW we take every honk we can get!
We accept the Hottie honk, the Hottie whistle and really any random noise we take as a "Hottie" appreciation.
Tree limb breaks-- that was a Hottie break!
Car skids around the corner....that was a Hottie skid!
Car door slams....Hottie slam!
You get the idea.
This new Hottie option builds us up and helps us feel better about dragging our pa-tooties up and down the road.
Quite the perk!

Tuesday, November 4, 2008

Chocolate Gift

My Si-borg friend thought I should broaden my dark chocolate samplings and got me a Starbucks Dark.... She is soooo nice.

I thanked her profusely and got into my car where I snarffed down the Starbucks Dark in a matter of minutes....eating quickly, but trying to savor the taste on my tongue...couldn't get enough...kept going, one bite after another.

When I arrived in my driveway, I checked the mirror, brushed away the crumbs off my chin and tried to hide the evidence. (Trash can outside. ) This is what all closet eaters do....if you haven't figured me out by now, I'm a closet eater.

I loved that dark bar.
Loved it.
I thought about it through out my day, and felt a satisfied glow each and every time.

Hours pass.

I was washing my face in my "white night" outfit-- when I looked at my cleavage area and saw dark spots all over my underwear. I was scared...it looked like ...I don't remember bleeding. On closer inspection, it was melted chocolate droppings.
I looked like a dalmation.

I laughed, as I cleaned myself up, and thought about the Starbuck's Dark again, with a satisfied glow.

I wonder when the Dark chocolate bar ends up on my fat white thighs if I will have the same glow of satisfaction?

Chocolate, the gift that keeps on giving.

Good times.

Monday, November 3, 2008

Food is my Frenemy

There is method in my non-cooking madness.

My boys will never say they miss their mother's cooking when they go away to school or on missions. My boys will eat school lunch, and appreciate it. My boys will go to the MTC and actually like the food. They will go on a foreign mission and eat only rice and beans for 2 years, and think it tastes pretty good.

They will never compare their newlywed bride's cooking to their mothers either.
You are welcome, future daughter's in law.

I'm doing a service for them and to their future.

I'm for well rounded boys who are just happy to have food in front of them.

I do make some food really well. Monson loves my Chocolate chip cookie dough, not the cookies, just the dough. And Laila has bragged to many friends about her mother's melted cheese "x" bread. (it's microwaved melted cheese, that is cut into an x-shape before served. I know all the tricks.)
I could write a cook book with all my secret recipes. Okay, maybe a flier with all my secret recipes...maybe a post-it?

You get the idea.

I know I used to like cooking.
In High School I subscribed to Bon Apetite, and would fall asleep at nights reading recipes.
I was in a recipe club once when I was first married-- for family style recipes. I really just wanted to get together with friends and chat and eat something besides Ramen noodles.
I never made anything great... I thought the ingredients were too expensive.

Now I view food as my enemy. Not good. Well more like a "frenemy"-- I love it and ha -te it at the same time.
I need to embrace it and have it be my friend, then I can move forward. I need to start a new relationship with food.
I'm going to get better at this.
Resolution: I will buy ingredients and I will cook and I will like it and I will have food be my friend instead of my enemy!!! ( How's that for a run on sentence?)

Sunday, November 2, 2008

Oct. 32nd

I have officially dubbed Nov. 1st-- Oct. 32nd. ( Call Congress and we'll get it on the calendar)
It's the Halloween Hangover day.
It truly is the day after the candy coma and spooky artifacts are still hanging out everywhere. I have 2 moldy , gross, definitely scary pumpkins on my front porch.
We have mounds and buckets and sacks of candy everywhere.
I'm still eating left over doughnuts, promising myself that I start the "diet" tomorrow.
Sounds Spooky !! This doesn't sound like November the month of gratitude at all!

Because of my sugar headache, my kids could probably ask me anything on this day and I would say yes.

"Mom can I take the car and drive it around all day?.."
"Sure."
"Mom, I'm getting my hair dyed blue and shaved into a mohawk."
"Why not."
"Mom can I go hang out with my questionable friends and have a sleep over?"
"Of course."
"Mom, can I have a million dollars?"
"No problem"

I really was in a fog all day long-- I blame it on the grease and the sugar.

A new official holiday has been declared!!!
-- Man, I have a headache.
Looking forward to November ...

Saturday, November 1, 2008

Sugar Coma


We had doughnuts coming out of our ears and other orifices last night.
My mom went Doughnut crazy.
My kitchen was a haze of grease, flying flour and a powdered sugar cloud.

Besides the 100's of doughnuts made, we also served Chili, White Chili and Potato Cheese Soup-- with rolls -of course- (don't want to stop with the dough theme.)
We fed the extended family, neighbors, random trick or treaters, and a boat load of high school kids who showed up after the foot ball game. ( we lost)

We easily had about 100 eaters here last night. WOW!
I ate my fare share-- 10-- I was doing my part.
We sent doughnut plates home with family members and still have 18 doughnuts staring at me temptingly this morning. (I'll admit I'm eating one as I write.)


When the doughnut eating stopped, we turned the left over dough into 2 big pans of rolls, cooked off and frozen and ready to eat on Sunday.

Mom is definitely dubbed " Queen of the Dough."

Now I'm on a complete sugar high. Doughnuts are like cra - ck- co- caine for me.

IF I add up the 10 doughnuts, the 2 bowls of chili-- no roll--( I was being good), the random candy bars I threw in my mouth as the night progressed, plus the end of the "hospital treats" that I ate during the afternoon as I was cleaning my kitchen--- I easily gained 10 pounds.
A new world record for one day of eating....
Good job Melinda! You can dub me..."Queen of no control!"
I have a sugar coma.... I need to go lie down.


Friday, October 31, 2008

Halloween Funnies





Why do they call the little candy bars that are passed out at Halloween...FUN- size. I find it inspires me to keep eating more and more and more just waiting for the FUN to start.

I'm working on my costume...a witch as usual, not too much of a stretch here.

I have mom coming tonight to make her doughnuts at my house, since we are trying to keep Laila down and "calm." I find sugar and more sugar are excellent strategies for this.

Life is sweet...ha, ha, ha

Thursday, October 30, 2008

Grateful Season

I am kicking off the "grateful" season a few days early this year. ....

I still am sick of my chub-- and I'm getting chubbier, but currently I'm just grateful for my life!

I'm grateful for life's challenges that make me stronger, and remind me to fall on my knees and turn to God.

I'm grateful for my Wayne-- he truly is the love of my life and I thank the Lord Daily for him and that he loves "crazy 'ol" me!

I'm grateful for what a great father Wayne is. Last night he came home from work with Graham cra- ck -ers, Marshmallows and chocolate. He lit the gas fireplace in the Living room and he and Laila had S'mores and told scary stories, and read books together. What a sight!

I'm grateful for all of the food and dinners and treats showing up at my house. No cooking for me. We have sat at the dining room table, as a family, every night this week, and had great food and laughed and enjoyed each other. What a blessing!

I'm grateful for my friends who walk and talk with me each morning, and bring me Dark Chocolate to melt in my mouth.

I'm grateful for a sweet daughter who holds my hand and says, "When we hold hands it feels like there's magic and nothing can hurt us.”

I'm grateful for 4 strong sons, who handle "crisis" and come out the other end sweeter and stronger and more loving. 4 sons who still hug and kiss their mom.

I'm grateful for art and creativity and being able to make things. I love watching Addison and his Art-- sculpting of elf-people currently. He is inspirational. He just dives in and tries things.

I'm grateful for a supportive and wonderful Mother in Law--- this is a blessed word in our home. Wanee comes each day and plays and reads and takes care of Laila so I can shower and have a break.

I'm grateful for the 1st grade school Halloween program. So darling. It was great to see Laila on the step remembering most everything, after not having practiced it for 8 days. She was expressive and .........a miracle!

I have a grateful heart......may it ever be so.

Wednesday, October 29, 2008

Halloween gingerbread house


Scene opens: A beautiful, just fresh from the ER, brown eyed , happily creating a Halloween gingerbread house with her mother.

"Please pass the candy, mother," says Laila.
"Yes, Darling. " responds Mother. " Oh, this Halloween kit is just wonderful. The icing totally holds the cookie structure together with no problems."
"Yes, we are having a lovely bonding time, mother, more sprinkles please," replies Laila, sweetly, as she puts orange jack-o-lanterns in a line on the roof top.
"This is the perfect out of the hospital project. I'm so glad we have this," laughs mother.
"I love you mother," says Laila with a tight squeeze.
" And I love you Laila," says mother as she holds up the picture perfect Haunted Cookie House that looks just like the one on the box. Everyone is smiling.

Now for......Real Life:

L: I can do this myself...I don't need any help.
M: I will help you or we are putting it away right now.
L: Why isn't the icing holding this together?
M: Oh my word you have black and orange icing everywhere. We need to wash your hands.
L: The candies aren't sticking. I don't want the icing there, that's not how it looks on the box!
M: The icing isn't working. Let's try microwaving it. Bad idea.
L: The house fell down again-- what is wrong with this?
M: Wash your hands-- you are turning all of the candy black.
L: Oops, I dropped all of the candy on the floor, the dog is eating it!!
M: The roof fell off again!!!
L: You ruin everything!!!!!!! ( Screamed at the top of her lungs.)
M: ( Silence as she tries not to say anything she will regret)

Pause...........

L: I forgive you.
M: Get the Glue gun!
L: I can't eat it if we glue it.
M: You won't eat it anyway. Let's go change our clothes. I love you Laila.
L: Yeah, yeah, I love you too mom.

Tuesday, October 28, 2008

Food, Glorious Food!

Food, Glorious Food is showing up at our home in abundance.

I denied the blessing to neighbors, family and friends to feed our family during the Wayne-C-Scare, so now we get double the blessings.

We got two dinners last night--- we were sitting down eating lovely chicken and rice, with jello salad and a bacon/corn veggie with homemade cheese biscuits...and dessert of course; when the door bell rang and dinner number 2 arrived: Potato cheese soup, hot rolls, apple waldorf salad, apple juice, and more dessert.

As I write this , I look on to my kitchen counter and I see dozens of nut filled brownies, ginger cookies, 8 caramel apples, a plate filled with pumpkin choco chip bread, a small plate of peanut butter rice krispies topped with melted chocolate, a plate filled with chocolate chip cookies, sugar cookies, a bat cookie from parson's bakery, a shake from Arctic circle that is melting, Banana bread, 4 bags of Snicker bars, caramel popcorn and......and...... and it just keeps on coming.

We have homemade rolls and lasagna and spaghetti and salads.....in the fridge and freezer.

It's a good thing I'm an emotional eater and Food= Love

I feel very loved right now.

Monday, October 27, 2008

Imperfect Life

We are so grateful to the Lord for keeping our Laila with us!!!

Laila is home and happy and has to "stay down" for a week, then slowly get back to school and life. I've taken her out of all of her lessons, and spoken to her teacher...etc.... She has had visitors and presents and Perlerbeads galore.
Now, I have to find quiet activities for her to do --wish me luck. Her grandmas have come by already this morning with activity books, tray puzzles, and a Halloween gingerbread house to construct.
Spending all this time with my darling girl has it's ups and downs. She is a cuddle bucket, but very bossy. She wants to watch the same DVD-- Hocus Pocus over and over and over...I'm trying to interest her in a new show.
Her head is pounding, which is to be expected, but her memory and motor skills are good--- which is such a blessing.

Being this close to Laila -- physically close--all the time, has made her look at me in a new light.
I would want her to see me as "perfect." She totally doesn't, she sees me as me.

I have a chubby lower back that amazes my Laila. She has asked me more than once, what this part of my body is called, as she pokes it over and over again with her finger, "What 's this pushy part called?" I tell her it's my back, she disagrees. "It looks more like a bum."

What surprises me most, is she is right!!

So now as I look in the mirror I realize I have 3 bums-- upper bum, bum and lower bum--the part that has slipped into my thighs.
She was this physically close as a baby and toddler but didn't have the verbal skills to comment on my body.
Now, I don't want her to see my hairy face, bulging belly or notice the other things "wrong" with me.
I know Laila is just innocently commenting-- not being mean or negative. I put the negative spin on it.
Oh, I can laugh about it...but it is interesting to note how I felt when she said this.

We are all imperfect beings with imperfect bodies having this life experience.

I'm just glad her perfect little body is on the mend.