Sunday, November 30, 2014

As we end November...

November is shutting its door and this quote sums up where I am mentally.

I am peaceful and thankful.  

I am not sure if I can hold on to this, but I feel like I have gained perspective lately.  

Life is not perfect and I have areas that I would like to change.  But perfection is an unattainable goal.  Can pretty damn good be good enough?  

Saturday, November 29, 2014

It’s that time of year!

We spent yesterday decorating the house for Christmas.  Each year we trade off who in our family hosts, and this year is our turn so I really wanted to make it fully decorated.

I always hate after Christmas meticulously  putting away the lights into their boxes and each ornament and decoration into its box, but boy, it is worth it every year when we get everything out!  No wrestling with lights and swearing in this household!  We have to replace some blown bulbs, of course, but everything has been put away so precisely that we just have to place everything in its Christmas place!

I got out the dogs sweaters – the are always SO PROUD to wear them – it’s pretty funny.  They jump around and just show off!















I’m hoping for a warm up to put some lights up outside…that would be a bonus!

I also spent yesterday decidedly NOT back on track food or exercise wise.

So today I resolved that I was not waiting until Monday to get on the wagon!  I grabbed the dogs and went out into the cold morning air.  We ran/walked 6 miles and I really challenged Chakotay who is not a fan of running.  But he did great, including running a full mile our last mile.

I felt great about this and ate a healthy lunch and when we went in to pick some necessities up, I ignored the sweets on clearance and instead bought items for my turkey chili.

Once again, it’s a one day at a time program, and for this day, I’ll claim success!

Friday, November 28, 2014

I’ll take victories where I can get them…

How did everyone make out yesterday?  Did you stick to the plan – whatever plan you made?

I didn’t weigh myself yesterday morning.  From Wednesday’s weigh in I knew that I failed in my goal and although seeing the actual number shouldn’t have mattered, it would have.

I started the day by cooking some things up for one of the dishes I was bringing to Thanksgiving dinner – a crock pot wild rice and mushroom stuffing.  Cooking onions at 7 AM isn’t exactly my idea of a good time, but it had to be done to get in the crockpot before we left for the race.

With all that cooked and into the crockpot, I got ready to run.  I haven’t done a lot of 5K’s and was looking forward to the shorter, fun race.


We got to the place and it was PACKED.  It was a cold day and there was some slush on the roads from the previous night’s small snowfall.

We lined up – packed shoulder to shoulder – and they saw us off with a loud horn.  It was a little slippery and about .5 miles in, we headed down a steep downhill and I am always SO afraid of falling that I slowed wayyyyyy up and people went FLYING by me.  But on the straight away, I gassed it up.

I was surprised and thrilled that with my Achilles and how I haven’t been running as much and when I have it’s been slow on the treadmill, that I felt STRONG.  About 2 miles in, I felt like I was flying!  I didn’t look at my Garmin, preferring to just run with the crowd – and listen to the spectators yell “Love your tutu!!”

Before I knew it, the finish line was out in front of me and I had some in the tank and sprinted. 

My time?  25:02!  Not too shabby right?  I mean, for what I’ve been dealing with and the conditions?  I’m going to say that while I failed in my weight goal, I succeeded in my racing.

I came in 135th – BUT it was out of 643 people – including the teenage boy who won coming in at – get this – 16:04!! 

I was a little heartbroken to see that I came in 4th in my age group – just barely nudging me out of a medal!!

In good spirits we headed home to shower, get ready and make a couple of other dishes for Thanksgiving.

We spent the rest of the day with Marc’s family, and I ate way way way too much, but I had planned on this.

I now have to decide what happens between now and Christmas.  I know that I need to lose weight – but I’ve known this for months and haven’t done anything about it.

Many people make it a goal to MAINTAIN during this period and then get on to losing after the holidays.

Fill me in guys – what are you going to do for the season?


Wednesday, November 26, 2014

Get bent…

I’m not broken, just bent a little bit.  And for today?  I’m okay with that.

I expected to be in a deep funk after the news yesterday, and I did spend some time feeling anxious and also sorry for myself.  But I got home and instead of eating myself into a food coma, which Fat Jen really wanted to do, I ran on the treadmill.  And I was okay.

I then made dinner and really felt okay about the world.

I stepped on the scale this morning and saw a disappointing 127.9.  Far away from where I wanted to be.  And yet I still didn’t succumb to depression.

I am bent.  My weight, my Achilles, but I’m not broken – I’m okay.

I will run in the Turkey Trot tomorrow and won’t have the best time.  I will spend the day with family.  I will laugh and eat way too much! 

That’s OK!

Because what I’m starting to realize is that being a little bit bent?  It’s a hell of a lot easier then constantly trying to be straight every minute of every day.


Tuesday, November 25, 2014

[Enter many swear words here]

Today has turned out to be pretty crappy.  I went to my physical therapy appointment today and told them how I have been feeling and what the results have been with the specific exercises they have been having me do.

While my Achilles is much improved from where I started, there is still pain and swelling.  And, after the mileage I put in Sunday, the pain was pretty significant.

They are basically out of ideas.  Nothing seems to be having a lasting effect.

So all the time - not to mention lots and lots of money - that has been spent, and I'm better but still pretty fucked.

I'm trying not to be such a drama queen.  As far as impairments go?  I'm pretty lucky.  I can still run, but probably not long distances.  But I do have to wallow in this for a bit and feel sorry for myself...


Monday, November 24, 2014


With Christmas coming, I know that a lot of you might be interested in either asking someone to buy you a FitBit or buying one for someone else.


I know very little about these devices, but they are all the rage.  So Marc decided to try one for himself. 

Check out his extremely detailed review on his blog, Random Bits & Bytes!


Sunday, November 23, 2014

Sliding into danger….

Ok, it’s not danger exactly, but we are headed into what most of us would label as the season to stuff our faces.

Yes, Thanksgiving to New Year’s is – at least for me – the most wonderfully fattening time of the year. 

Not only do we have all kinds of holiday celebrating, but we are also reaching the days where there is the least amount of light – which leads to depression and a desire for me to jab a knife in the eye of anyone who gets between me and carbs.

Now add this to the mix – I am horribly superstitious – did you know that?  And this time of year – within a few days of one another marks the following anniversaries:

  • My father’s death
  • A head on car collision
  • having to put my Rottweiler, Riker to sleep
  • The death of my ferret, Kira

It is not a good time of year.

I am headed into this holiday season with a reasonably good attitude.  It was mild today and most of the FEET of snow we had built up melted.  I got out first thing this morning and went on a walk/run with the dogs for 8 full miles.

I then ordered a couple of Xmas gifts online, played a couple computer games, did some laundry and then headed to the basement and ran on the treadmill while watching football.  Another 8 miles – we’ll see how Mr. Achilles reacts to that later….

I also ate extremely well today.  I just finished a brilliant home made pork stir fry dish loaded with fresh vegetables and brown/wild rice cooked in the rice cooker.

And I feel great about that – BUT, I’m going to be honest here – I can’t wait for Thanksgiving Day and all the indulgences it brings.

I am not going to make my weight goal on Thursday, either, which makes me feel like a bit of a failure.  But I’m not beating myself up, either, which is a victory in itself.
I continue to navigate and negotiate with myself.  Hold on tight – this should be an interesting sprint to the end of the year.


Saturday, November 22, 2014

Feel the flow....

Feel the flow is a common phrase they use in yoga.  Right now I'm feeling that flow.   I think I've mentioned here before that many times in my life I've felt like a spectator of my life.  But right now?  I feel grounded and peaceful.

The last couple days we've been setting up our new cable and especially internet.  For those of you that have had high speed internet for years - like the rest of the civilized world, it's probably difficult for you to understand how truly life changing it is for us.

I know I told you guys about buying a TV earlier this summer.  It is a smart TV.  So the last 2 days, Marc and I streamed yoga videos from youtube - it was so effing cool!  I know I'm a dork.

Today we worked out and then went into the store so I could buy what I need to make the dishes I bring to Thanksgiving.   It was still early when we got home and I reluctantly started cleaning the kitchen which was a disaster area.  I hate cleaning, but once I start - I was feeling the flow - and attacked the rest of the house.  A couple hours later, I had a very clean house and that priceless sense of having accomplished something.

Marc chose an extremely challenging yoga video - as I sit here 4 hours later my shoulders are still aching!  And then I made a cheesy cauliflower soup for dinner.

I feel in the zone.  I'm even not having fits about my weight today!  How long can I hold onto this?  My grip is tight!!

Thursday, November 20, 2014

Hey, moron, things are good!

My friend asked me how things were going today.

Things are great, actually.  Other then the freaking weather.

But really, what do I have to complain about?  I have a home, work is going great, and the miracle happened today - they FINALLY installed high speed internet!!!

I have a wonderful husband and our marriage is fantastic.  Archer's ear is virtually healed and the rest of our managerie is in great shape.

My Achilles feels wonderful!  I ran again tonight - on the treadmill again - but I'm hardly feeling any pain!  I have to run outside to really test it, but damn - this is something I feared would never happen.

And yet...I can't surrender to happiness. Why?  Because of the number.  That blasted number on the scale that greets me every morning.  It taunts me, tells me I'm a miserable fat failure.  

I think some times that I've gotten beyond that.  And I really have improved.  But wayyyy inside it tears at me.  Every single morning.  It's STUPID.  So so so stupid.  And yet real...

Will I ever get there?  I guess it's like everything about this a journey - persistence and patience...

Wednesday, November 19, 2014

The BUZZZZ of healing?

We survived round 1 of the storm - I'd say we got pretty close to 2 feet.  AND guess what?  Round 2 is headed our way!  Good times, people - does anyone live in hot weather and have a guest house that you'd love to put me up in???

So let's talk physical therapy.  I told you about last Thursday and the woman who does mechanics.  Then Friday, I saw another woman who massaged and pulled on my Achilles, foot and calf.  Both days I also had the electrical stimulation and this weekend I felt really good!  A 6 mile power walk with the dogs and almost no pain.  Then the 7 mile run.  Which hurt, but nothing like in the past.

Yesterday another session of a specific squat designed to challenge the ankle joint and Achilles. Followed by the electrical stim.   I did plyometrics and went 5 miles on the dreadmill and very little pain during and almost no pain getting up in the night!

So today I saw the mechanics lady again.  She is firmly convinced that the answer lies in my ankle joint - me?  I think it's electrical stimulation that’s doing wonders.  Either way, something is working - and that is good.  The pain I feel is usually not TERRIBLE pain, it's just a chronic always there pain.  And the thing with chronic pain is that you sometimes don't even know it's there until you're not in pain!  So Saturday I suddenly realized - while in the shower - that I wasn't in pain!!  It was strange!

The physical therapist’s office is going to submit to my insurance for them to authorize me getting one of those stimulation machines so I can use it at home.  They cost - get this - $3,000!!!  So first we have to see if it's approved and then see how much of that they cover.

But I am seeing a light at the end of the tunnel!


Tuesday, November 18, 2014

A wacky day!

What a bizarre day!  I got up to pee twice in the night and we had no snow.  So I thought we were home free.  But then the alarm went off and the first words I heard?  “Oh SHIT!” from Marc.  We couldn’t even see the chicken coop that sits just a few feet from our bedroom window!

So I take a shower, eat breakfast and get all ready and head into this:


As I headed in, 3 cars were off the road.  But then, just a few miles from my house?  Cleared up COMPLETELY.  That’s how lake effect works!

I went into physical therapy.  While I was sitting there, I got a text that they were closing all building owned by the county.  So after physical therapy I got to head home.

Marc and I did P90X Plyometrics and were watched almost the whole time by this guy:


It was blizzard conditions, so I didn’t even take the dogs out to play!  The high winds made for frigid temps.

I managed NOT to eat myself into a food coma, but trust me, I wanted to!  I was, for some reason, nervous and hyped up. 

On the bright side, I got good news at physical therapy today and have another appointment tomorrow – I’ll fill you in, then.  So – other then this weather – I hope things are looking up!!

Monday, November 17, 2014

Snow and Porn…

The apocalypse is coming.  At least that's what the weathermen are predicting.  A monster of a snowstorm is heading directly towards us and we are supposed to get NAILED.

I just read that they are talking 5 inches of snow PER HOUR and 45 MPH winds.  Well fuck me.  Of course this is lake effect snow.  Which means 10 minutes south of where I live could get blistered while my house gets next to nothing – or vice-versa.  We won't know until it moves in.  It's starting tonight and won't end until Wednesday afternoon.

You all know how I feel about weather like this.  So I'm already throwing myself a pity party on top of the feeling sorry for myself dance I've been doing for weeks.

And then - welcome to the holidays and FOOD PORN!!!  Facebook is always good for that, but this time of year it really ramps up.  Page after page of sinfully calorie ridden treats that just scream to me.  MUST MAKE, MUST EAT!

I worked out yesterday - 19 miles on our stationary recumbent bike and then I ran 7 miles on the treadmill.  7 miles which is - absolutely pathetically - my longest run in months.  My reward?  An astronomically high scale number this morning.

And today?  I didn't want to work out during my lunch hour and the following thought didn't just cross my mind - it sat down in my mind, kicked back, and made itself very, very at home.  What was that thought?

Well, I decided that I was going to pretty much bail on exercising and would eat whatever I wanted through Xmas and then would get back on track come January.  Yup - that was my thought and, as visions of Oreos and brownies and shopping and eating out during my lunch hour gleefully played out in my head, I wanted to – as Picard would say “Make it so!”  It was a lovely, enticing fantasy.

When people are talking to me about my "amazing" change, do you think they suspect what a true phony I really am??


Sunday, November 16, 2014

Understanding change…

I don’t know why I have been thinking about change lately, but it’s really been weighing (haha – no pun intended) on my mind, especially with my current struggle to get my weight back down to a reasonable – if not ideal – number.

When I work with recovering addicts, we often talk about change and how hard it is.  I often say to them “Stopping using drugs is the easy part.  If this journey was just about not using, I would be out of a job!”

And guess what – the same applies to weight loss.  The eating less and moving more?  That’s a matter of science.  It’s that easy.  It’s the mental change that is such a challenge.

That’s why for so many people who have weight loss surgery, it doesn’t work.  They either don’t lose, or lose and then gain it back.  Because the change for many is not a mental change.  It’s a physical one and that can only take you so far. 

And please don’t think that this me being judgmental, because it’s not.  It just is a reality. 

Just the other day I was talking to a new physical therapist who was trying something different on me (that’s a story for later) and we were talking about how I “duck walk” – with my toes pointed out.  And I told her I thought she needed to know that this is not from the Achilles injury, but rather from years of being obese and my thighs being so large that my feet needed to point out.

She told me – like I have heard many times – that my weight loss was “amazing”.

But my weight loss is really not amazing.  What is amazing is what I changed mentally.  Which is what is so hard to explain to people.  I can talk all day about healthy foods and protein and being active.  But what I can’t do is explain why and how I went from being someone who CHOSE to sit on my ass and eat unhealthy foods to being someone who made a commitment to eating healthy things, to saying NO to foods I really wanted to eat and being someone who half the time wouldn’t get up to get my own soda out of the fridge to exercising 2 hours a day.

Everyone – and I mean everyone – has the capacity for change.  But not all of us choose to exercise it.

Every single drug addict out there has the ability to stop using drugs.  Every single person who wants to lose weight CAN lose weight!  People can choose to be nicer, to be better parents, to learn and to grow.  But it’s hard.  So fucking hard at times.  And we might not be able to change as much as we want.

But we can make changes to take us towards our goals. Most people simply don’t make the choice.  Which is why people see my physical change as being “amazing”.  Because most of us don’t make good choices.  I didn’t for many years.  And I still make lots and lots of bad choices.

But the next time you are thinking about your goals you might want to visit what block there is mentally to your change rather then just looking at what is happening physically.


Friday, November 14, 2014

A day in the (food) life -

A cup of coffee and an envelope of Quaker Oatmeal – lower sugar.  Today’s selection – maple and brown sugar.
A package of Miracle Noodles – angel hair:
A package of imitation crab meat:
Mixed together and microwaved for 4 minutes:
A banana and water:
A huge salad – includes Romaine Lettuce, spinach, carrots, celery, broccoli, olives, cranberries, fat free feta cheese:
And topped with 6 ounces of grilled boneless pork:
And a glass of skim milk.
Dannon Light & Fit Greek yogurt.

Thursday, November 13, 2014

2 and 2…

2 weeks from today is Thanksgiving.  I stepped on the scale this morning and weighed 126.9.  Which means if I want to meet one of my 2 goals, I have to lose at least 2 pounds.  I'm not sure that is realistic.

But I won't give up.

I ran 6 easy miles on the treadmill last night and my Achilles and opposite knee are pretty sore.  But I feel like the 5K Turkey Trot will be comfortable.  Probably I won't win a medal but I'll finish.

Marc took Archer in to see the vet this morning.  The hematoma is pretty well healed.  She thinks the ear infection is as well but wants us to continue with the topical antibiotics for a week just to be sure.  No further appointment needed.  Yay!

I tried something new for lunch today.  I brought in 2 cups of canned pumpkin (160 cals) and mixed that with a spinach and garlic chicken sausage (80 cals) and mixed it up with salt and cinnamon.  It was actually really good!

I find myself interested in experimenting with new tastes and coming up with different things to eat rather then a salad every day.

I had PT this afternoon.  I saw a different woman who was trained in “mechanics”.  I feel as if I have plateaued in my treatment and so do they, so they are trying to rule out that this is some sort of ankle/bone issue that is causing the problem.  I ran up and down stairs, did a ton of squats and stretched and she pulled and pushed on my foot.  AND?  Inconclusive Sad smile 

But she hooked me up to the electrical stimulator for 15 minutes and I came home and ran 4 and had virtually no pain and have no pain here an hour or so later.  So that has to be good, right?  We’ll see how I feel when I get up to pee in the middle of the night.

What I am noticing is that I am being so much less harsh on myself.  I still have my moments, and I’m not happy with my weight, BUT I also don’t spend hours obsessively berating myself.  And that is good news, too!

Wednesday, November 12, 2014

Fighting like cats and dogs...

I thought I would shows you a pic of the absolutely vicious fights that happen when you have a house full of cats and dogs...

Hope it brings a smile to your face!!!

Tuesday, November 11, 2014

The Cable Guy...

Marc and I moved into our house in 1998.  We live pretty rural, although a main highway passes near us.  At the time, we tried to get cable but it didn't even go down the main road.  So we got Direct TV and used dial-up to access the internet.

A few years later, they ran cable down the main road.  We were excited not just so much for cable, but for getting high speed internet.  But even though the cable went .25 miles from us, Time-Warner told us that the cost would be $11,000 to run it!  Are you kidding??

They then ran it down our remote road from the opposite side.  And stopped .7 miles from us.

We have been battling, battling and battling with them for years.  I've written nasty e-mails to them.  I've called and harassed them.  And still we were living in the hell of no high speed internet.  We bought a Mifi card a few years ago.  Better then dial-up, but still agonizingly slow.  We talked about paying for satellite, but it is extremely expensive and people we know  who have it are largely unhappy with the service.

So we can't watch videos or anything streaming.  We can't download anything as even a small file takes hours.  With the internet increasingly being necessary for everyday things, it has been a little slice of hell.

This summer we noticed a company running a line from a cell tower near us to the road.  The workers  were contracted to run it and told us it was a fiber-optic line and they didn't know anything else. 

Hoping against hope I called Time-Warner again.  I actually received a call back from a local employee named Phil.  He knew exactly who I was and where I lived (I wonder if he knows all the nasty things I've said about his company?!)  He told me that T-Mobile had contracted with them to run and line and yes, because of that, finally, after all these years he could get us service.  He said that he had been "trying to get you guys service for years!"

He told me it would take up to three months to run the line.  I told him I didn't believe it would really happen and he assured me it would.  July ended, August, September passed and we saw nothing.  I called Phil's cell phone and he assured me that they were waiting for a "build order" from the powers that be, but it was going to happen.  And then?  2 weeks ago Marc saw them running a line to the pole near us.  Could this really be happening?

After not hearing from them, I called Phil again on Friday and told him it was his favorite stalker calling.  He laughed and said that line was all set but now they needed a "turn on order". 

So last night we arrived back from our ride and I told you guys that we heard the doorbell.  It was around 6:30 PM and we wondered who the heck it cold be.  It was David from Time-Warner.  "I hear you want internet?" he said.  I said "Since 1998!!"  He laughed.  I'm glad he thought it was funny! 

And within minutes there was a signed contract and the promise of "in a few days" he would have us up and running.

Marc is beyond excited.  I am happy, but until I am able to sit down and easily watch my first cute kittens playing video on Youtube, I'm not going to believe it's real!!! 

Monday, November 10, 2014

Sometimes things fall into place...

I get so frustrated when I make plans and they don't work out.  Sometimes - amazingly - things just fall into place!

That was today.  A few weeks ago I started thinking that I had a small gift certificate to use in a store that we don't have here, but there is one in Syracuse.  I told Marc that I had Veteran's Day off, and if I took off today I would have a 4 day weekend, and if the weather held up that one of the days we could take our bikes down, ride a nice trail system down there, and then head to the store to use my gift certificate.

The weather predictions all this week showed that today would be perfect - not much wind, partly sunny and temps in the 50's.  And - for once - they were right!  Bikes loaded we headed down to the Onondaga Lake Trail.

It was an awesome ride.  What a difference riding on a long, fast, flat trail rather then the hilly, windy, high traffic areas around here!  It was a beautiful day.  We only went 20 miles, but had a great time!

We then headed over to another short trail and checked that out.  Finally we hit the store and then headed back.

We stopped at Walmart to grab a couple of things and to get something for dinner.

We got home and all I wanted was a HOT shower, my PJ's and dinner - I was starving!

We barely walked in the door when our doorbell rang.  I almost yelled for Marc to ignore it, but then I heard him say "Hi!" - and BOY - was I glad he answered the door!!!!

To be continued....

Sunday, November 9, 2014

I remember you!

I was obese for much longer in my life then I have been not obese.  So you would think that it would take an extremely long time – if ever - for the memories of being that person to fade.

And in some ways – many ways - it is true.  The psychological fear of becoming fat again, the physical reminders of my obesity – those are here to stay.

But in other ways, the memories I have of who that person was and what her life was like – they seem like something I read about – not something that I actually lived with.

I thought about this the other day when I went to the upstairs of our house to put something up there to store.  And I saw this bag.  At first I wasn’t sure what  it was – I looked closer and saw that it was my old CPAP machine.

From the time Marc and I moved in together I snored terribly.  It used to be something I would laugh about.  But it was truly disruptive to Marc’s sleep – especially since he is a horrifically light sleeper as it is.

And it wasn’t just the snoring.  I would go to bed on a Friday night – exhausted from the week – at 11PM.  I would sleep until around 10:30 AM.  Even though I felt as if I had slept, I would emerge with a pounding headache and not feeling rested.

I finally went to the doctor’s and was scheduled to see a specialist.  I spent the night in a hotel like room in the hospital with a ton of wires attached to my head.  I was stopping breathing multiple times per night and, even worse, the non-breathing episodes lasted 30 seconds or more and my oxygen levels were dropping to 59%!!

I was given a sleep apnea machine which I soon became completely dependent on.  Not only did it look incredibly sexy:

CPAP Machine,

But I had to haul the machine and all of it’s extras (like distilled water) with us everywhere.  I had to have it when we camped – stuck next to our air mattress.

And I didn’t think a thing about it – it is amazing what we can – and do – get used to.

Interestingly enough, neither my doctor or the specialist mentioned my weight and how losing weight could probably solve the problem.

When I started to lose weight, I continued to wear the machine.  I had lost quite a bit and then suddenly realized that it was not comfortable and that air being forced into me while I slept didn’t feel normal. 

So I tried not wearing it.  I slept great and Marc said I didn’t snore.  I woke up early.  I felt refreshed.  So the machine was retired for good.

Fortunately I lost weight before I started to have other, more serious, health issues.  I knock on wood that I never had to take cholesterol or high blood pressure meds and that I never developed diabetes.  I wonder if I had if that would have made me wake up…

Saturday, November 8, 2014

Climbing out of a hole…

Yesterday was a rotten day.  I started it off with physical therapy, which was fine, EXCEPT it effing COLD out and  the appointment was first thing in the morning and the place wasn’t warmed up yet and I got chilled while lying there letting the electrical stimulation go on for 15 minutes on top of the 5 minute phonophoresis treatment.

I get back to my office and despite a large coffee and hot oatmeal, I sat there in my – for most people oppressively – warm office and just shook.

I swear, if it weren’t for the fact that I was tested just a few months ago AND that my skin, nails and hair are in great shape, I would think my thyroid had fallen out of my body.

By lunch time, I was miserable.  The thought of working out – pathetically – made me want to cry.  All I wanted to do was eat.  I plowed through my salad with tuna and was completely and totally unsatisfied.  All I could think about was carbs carbs carbs.

Driving home it was lightly spitting a cold snow/sleet so when I got home and the pity party continued.  I had agreed for this survey company to dye my hair and they had sent me a kit.  I dyed the hair and while rinsing it out stood underneath HOT water.

I ate dinner which despite being a completely healthy normal dinner, again left me feeling empty. 

I sat on the couch just waiting for the day to end so I could go to bed.

A good night’s sleep refreshed me somewhat, but I was out of sorts this morning, as well.  I did manage to haul my ass to the basement for a weight heavy workout.

Then we went in to my hair salon where I saw my stylist and gave her something I had made for her.  At our last appointment she told me that there would be no wigs for her.  As soon as chemo ended and she had even a bit of hair, she told me, she would “rocking the lesbian cut!”  I gave her the scarf and hat I made for her:


And told her I was all for her rocking that cut, but she would need to keep her head warm during her long walks!

Beyond that, it was an uninspiring day.  I did do some yoga and was at least gratified to see that my flexibility, lack of pain, and balance is proof positive that I am definitely healing.

But I have once again, lost that wonderful mojo.  And I am terrified that this long winter will push my weight even further up the scale!

Thursday, November 6, 2014

This post is for the animals!

Remember those cute little black baby chicks - Tony's last hurrah?  Well they have developed into some of the nicest, friendliest and cutest chickens we've ever had!  They follow Marc around and beg to be hand fed - it is adorable.

But - they are growing little pigs - scarfing up food - and I noticed 2 of the roosters getting into a mini fight - more posturing really - but I knew the time had come.


So Tuesday I went out and got a head count.  5 roosters and 5 hens.  I posted on Craigslist and got an immediate response from 2 people.  I reluctantly contacted the one guy - I hated to see such nice animals gone - especially not knowing if they were going to be dinner, but we can't have 6 roosters in our small flock.

The guy came yesterday when Marc was home, and - I'm thrilled to report - that he had established a flock of about 40 hens and had no roosters!  So he wanted them for his girls, not for his dinner table!

He emailed me last night thanking me and saying they were getting used to their new home!!

Archer is doing so much better!  He's getting back to his old self.  And when I clean out the port hardly anything is coming out - just some blood - and the port keeps trying to come out of the ear - a sure sign of healing!  And last night this disgusting black thing - part of the infection from deep in the ear - came out while I was cleaning it.  Frigging gross but leaving nice pink skin under it.  So good news there!!

Finally, an update on my wonderful little fatboy, Chakotay.  He still - like his mommy - wants to eat and eat and eat.  I have been a little lazy about tracking his measurements.  He is such a sweetie - when I call Archer in to clean out his ear, he comes running and stands beside me - supervising.  As soon as we are done he runs around trying to Archer to play and chase him!

Anyway I pulled out the tape measure today and wrapped it at and him.  I was so happy to see that since the last time I measured - 3 months ago - he has lost 1/2 inch from his chest, and stayed the same in his waist.

He - like me - is just never going to be thin.  But he is clearly maintaining well, and for now, I'll take it!!!

Wednesday, November 5, 2014

Shock therapy…

My friend did not win last night.  I am sad for her and, honestly, sad for the community.

This morning I went to PT and was seen by the actual physical therapist for a reevaluation.  She feels that I have made significant progress, but I still have pain and swelling, so she started today adding electrical stimulation.  Basically she took a sophisticated TENS unit and hooked 4 electrodes up and I received the stimulation for 15 minutes.  We'll be continuing that for a few sessions before deciding if we need to take another course.


My Achilles feels fantastic right now - of course I haven't run since Sunday, so that is probably part of it too.  But I am hoping that this  - quite literally - shocks my Achilles into submission.

My weight is holding stubbornly at 126.  I asked myself last night, again, after Marc offered me a mini Snickers bar (80 calories) and I reluctantly refused - how my life will be better if I can get back down under 120 - hell, I'd take under 125 at this point.

I don't have a concrete answer for that but my brain believes all would be right with the world if that was to happen.

I think that is magical thinking.  I also think that I'm making progress on that, but I'm not quite there, yet...


Tuesday, November 4, 2014

Getting out to vote


And I hope you did too!

I have voted in every election since I was 18.  That includes absentee voting when I was at college.

I take this privilege seriously.  And since I get the day off of work – don’t ask me why that’s a holiday for us – I have ZERO in the excuse department.

This year was special.  Although I have personally known people before in our local elections, this is the first time that someone I consider a friend is running for office.

An office that is important and that I think she would be spectacular in the role.  So voting for her – it took on a special meaning. Especially since I know she is running for all the RIGHT reasons.

Today was a day when everything seemed to fall into place.

Marc and I got around this morning and went in to vote.  I took advantage of the day that most people don’t have off and didn’t have to wait in line to get my oil changed, to fill up Dexter and to get a few groceries.

After lunch, although it was pretty windy, it was – for this area – a positively tropic day.  Marc and I took advantage of it and headed out on a bike ride.  30 miles later I arrived home spent and happy. 

I threw a pork, apple and sweet potato casserole in the oven and then relaxed. 

Today was a good day and I’m keeping all my fingers and toes crossed that it ends the same and my friend emerges as the victor!

Monday, November 3, 2014

Recipe: Broccoli-cheddar Chowder

I LOVE a hot soup on a cold night.  And I really love the anything with cheese.  I adore Panera’s broccoli-cheddar soup – but it is extremely high in calories. 

So I present to you a healthier version:


• 1 tablespoon olive oil
• 1 large carrot - diced
• 2 stalks celery. - diced
• 2 cloves garlic - minced
• 1 large potato - diced
• 1 tablespoon flour
• 1/2 teaspoon dry mustard
• 2 14 ounce cans broth
• 8 ounces broccoli crowns
• 1 cup reduced fat shredded cheese
• 1/2 cup reduced fat sour cream
• 1/8 teaspoon salt

Heat up the olive oil and add carrots and celery:






Cook for 5 minutes.

Add potato and garlic:







Cook for 2 minutes.

Add flour:







Dry mustard:







And cook for another 2 minutes.

Add broth and broccoli:


Bring to a boil, then reduce to medium heat and cook for 20 minutes.

Take out 2 cups and blend – I used my handy dandy wand blender:













Pour that back in to saucepan.

Add cheese and sour cream:






Cook for 3 minutes or until all cheese is melted.


Serve it up!!


Sunday, November 2, 2014

Just one more hour!

I am always saying if I only had even one more hour in the day…

Well, I got my wish this weekend!  Even though I slept in late, I had a ton of time this morning.  The weather was nice and sunny, but terribly windy and effing COLD! 

But, I needed to get some sunlight in me, so I layered up – Cuddl Duds as the first layer, then some fleece pants and a thick sweatshirt, and then a jacket and thick gloves.  Yes, that’s what a November walk looks like in the godforsaken hellhole known as Northern NY.  Then my boys and I headed out for a long walk.  

It wasn’t the best walk ever, especially when I took a turn and was walking directly into 15 MPH winds.  BUT, the boys were enjoying themselves and I was getting some exercise and some sun into me.

When we got back = 7.4 miles in just under 2 hours – it was still only 11AM.  How awesome was that?

I would like to request an extra hour every single weekend, please!!!

Did I tell you guys about our treadmill?  We had been having problems with it, and Marc took off the belt and saw that we had worn a huge groove in it! 

Between the two of us and the dogs, in the course of almost exactly 4 years, we put about 2,700 miles on it!  It looks like this:


So I ordered a new deck and Marc got it installed, but it’s been a BITCH to get the belt right – between adjusting the tightness and the alignment, he’s been ready to kill someone. 

He thought that he finally got it right and ran himself a short distance this week and it seemed perfect.

So, while watching football, I decided to head down and do a little bit of running.  I ended up running 5 miles because it felt really good – the tready can be mind-numbingly boring, but boy, the impact is so much gentler then running on pavement.

So despite some really bad food choices this weekend, I feel like I’m ending the first weekend in November, by eating extremely well today and getting in some good exercise.  And I’m gonna go ahead and take partial credit for the Dolphins CREAMING the Chargers!!

I hope all of you are starting the last push of the year in a great place as well!!


Saturday, November 1, 2014

Taking on November

Wow – it’s November.  I can’t believe this year has gone by so fast!

November is a mixed bag for me – we “fall back” tonight which means the sun will set depressingly early.  The desire to crawl into my PJ’s and cuddle up under a heated blanket the SECOND I get home will be overwhelming.

I had a goal for 2014 – to get in at least 2,000 miles.  Despite totally falling off the wagon in my running, I racked up 247 miles in the month of October and sit pretty at 1,935 miles year to date.  So I will clearly make my goal and much more.

I signed Marc and I up for the Turkey Trot this morning.  My goal to weigh less then 125 that morning seems so close and yet SO FAR.  Especially since I can only seem to hold my motivation to eat rigorously well for a few days in the row before going off the rails.

My other goal – to be healthy enough to run that short 5K – seems more realistic.  The treatment I am getting continues to have an increasingly positive effect.  There is still pain, but the swelling is almost completely gone!

Speaking of my PT treatments, I took some pics!









This is me wrapped in a heated pad prior to treatment.









Then I lay face down on the bed so she can treat my Achilles.









The room is dimly lit and peaceful with soft music playing – there are some pretty decorations on the ceiling which I don’t see due to lying face down.









And then the ultrasound machine that is used to drive to cortisone in.

After treatment, we head into their gym for 10 minutes of challenging exercises designed to work my Achilles.  Friday’s workouts involved jumping on a mini-trampoline, box jumps, towel hops and Heisman jump-holds.

The weather continues to be largely uncooperative.  I am facing the last 2 months of the year in an unsteady but not bad place mentally.  Onward and upward?