Saturday, December 29, 2007

last weekend of the year

I had my whole day planned around an event tonight. (I invited myself to a child's birthday party.) Upon check of my e-mail it turns out the thing is tomorrow. So now the pressure is off, and here I sit at my computer.

I've played some cards, checked the Obesity Help message boards, read a little about water and protein consumption, and am now rambling to you good person.

It doesn't seem like there's a lot to do, but my list is actually pretty long:

Laundry, when you only have 4 pairs of pants that fit the machine is going all the time. (More on pants later)
Take down the tree.
GoodWill ( seems like I'm going every week. Here's even MORE clothes that don't fit.)
Gift for mom's birthday.
Litter Box , yuck
Christmas cards (I'm still hoping to send something this year.)

More on Pants:

So, I'm not losing weight at the same marvelous pace as when I first got home from the hospital, but my body is changing. The black pants I had hemmed have gone from a tad too tight to belt required. It has only been three weeks. There's a new rule in the clothing department - no pants shall enter my wardrobe unless they have belt loops. I refuse to wear stretchy pants to work, so I'm going to have to stay diligent about looking for good deals.

I have to say that while I fully get that my body is getting smaller I'm having trouble parting with some of my most favorite clothes. I am fitting into smaller sizes and feel great in them, but I keep putting on items that are bigger thinking that it's great how loose they fit. I changed my clothes twice before leaving the house yesterday, because I was swimming in the items I had put on.

I guess it's time to turn that aggressive "throw this stuff out" force on myself. Both Yaz and Ali know exactly what I mean. I'm able to help other people weed out crap out of closets, garages and spare rooms, but I may need help to do it for myself.

Friday, December 28, 2007

Movie Review: National Treasure, Book of Secrets

See, not every movie I pick is an epic love story or relevant commentary on how our half assed involvement in foreign affairs ends up hurting us.

The first half of this movie is smarmy, over the top, cheesy and totally fun! Set aside any thoughts of "yeah right" and enjoy this cotton candy.

There was an emergency in the building and they evacuated the entire Lincoln Square complex. Once the all clear was sounded and we finally wandered back over to the building they (theater management) were handing out movie passes (with your ticket stub of course) but without hassle. THANK YOU!

I have work today so we didn't opt to sit for the next showing. So, I'll have to review the second half of the movie when I ever get to see it.

It's a Disney movie so I can pretty much guess how it turns out. Ed Harris gets his, Nick and the gang find the treasure and Jon Voight gets it on with Helen Mirren. Wait, it is Disney so they don't "get it on" get it on... they have a laugh and a "knowing look" that says... when this damn mouse finally leaves, we're gonna "get it on!"

Movie Review: Charlie Wilson's War

Here's another splendid book turned into a splendid movie.

If you know much about our history and involvement in Afghanistan and Saudi Arabia then you know the gist of this movie. Based on real events this movie is both educational and entertaining.

Tom Hanks is as usual, wonderful. Phillip Seymour Hoffman brings every role he touches to life and you can't help but love to hate him. Julia, well she's Julia. Although I read that she was almost four months pregnant when she shot the bikini scene... she should get an Oscar for the flat stomach.

I think this one will be high on the Oscar nominations list, so take time out to see it.

Oh, and

Open Memo

To: The man sitting next to me in the theater
From: tp gal
RE: Your stupidity

Not ALL people from the middle east are terrorists you ignorant ass-hole.

Movie Review: Atonement

Read the book.
See the movie.

Both are splendid!

The book has much more in the way of nuances and character development. It is fluid, gripping and heartbreaking.

The movie is stunning and remarkably well done. The visual contrast between the soft memories of childhood and the reality of a war torn France are stirring.

This isn't a movie for kids - language and s.e.x. But, for those of us of age... whoa, very HOT.

Keira Knightly needs to eat a cookie or something, but she's so beautiful that she's a skeleton doesn't matter.

James McAvoy is oh what's the word... dreamy. If he keeps picking roles like this, and the one in The Last King of Scotland (which you should see - again, without the kids) he'll be an icon before you know it.

To recap:

Read the book
See the movie
Keira - eat something!

Thursday, December 27, 2007

More about my darned weight....

I lost weight over Christmas!!!! Only two pounds... but still - yeah!

I was worried about Christmas dinner. Would I be able to sit at the table with my family and not feel deprived? As it turns out, yes. I served myself a dollop of all my favorite foods and a TON of greenbeans. The stuffing was cornbread stuffing (which I secretly hate) so I didn't take much more than a tablespoon of that. I ate slowly, putting my fork down between bites.

I didn't spy anyone ogling my plate (I also spaced the food out so it looked like a full plate.) I ate slowly while everyone else threw food into their face like they hadn't eaten in years. We mostly finished at the same time, although I still had food on my plate at the end so I "picked" at it while some when back for seconds. I had that overly full feeling that is so satisfying after Thanksgiving, but not so much that I had to "give back".

Giving back is a side effect of eating too much, the doctor said it's best to "give back" than hold it in. I didn't want to do that at my aunts house because she's still a little bit on the fence about my surgery. I don't want to give her any reason to doubt that this might have been the best thing I've EVER done for myself.

So, here it is the 27, I lost weight while away and am excited about the return to a normal schedule.

Watch me waste way!

Monday, December 24, 2007

Merry Christmas

I didn't get it together enough to send holiday cards this year. I had three weeks off from work and I only managed to get gifts for my family. I'm totally filled with holiday spirit, but that didn't translate into kicky cards. Maybe for new years...

The drive over the pass to Eastern Washington was a long and slow event. The 3 hour drive took 6 and a half hours. But I made it, and I even put the tire chains on myself!

We spent yesterday with Aunt Glenda and today we're hanging out (saw a matinee ' Charlie WIlson's War.) Tomorrow we're off to Sandy & Ed's for dinner and cards.

Nothing super exciting to report. My parents watch Discovery, History, CNN or if I'm lucky the Independant Film Channel. Discovery is ok, but History and CNN get really old after the third hour. We argue over the computer. (I've won the latest round.)

So, have a happy holiday, don't worry that your annual card from me got lost, it never left my living room.


Thursday, December 20, 2007


The scale is moving again! I'm 9 pounds from a major milestone for me. It feels like it's just around the corner. Yippie.

While I knew that the last two weeks have been normal weight loss (stall) behavior it is still a little distressing. I continue to pass by the Christmas Cookies that are at the office day after day with no "reward." I have always felt that those of us who struggle with our weight should get a small 1/2 pound dip in our weight after we resist something like fudge, french fries, or garlic bread. To get the bonus weight drop, you have had to have really struggled with the decision to walk away from the treat. Again, one more reason that I'm pissed that I don't run the world. (Kidding - I don't want to be responsible for the entire world. So, if you're reading this Morgan Freeman, don't drop by I'm not building you an Ark or anything.)

Anywho... I had a good workout last night. 30 minutes on the elliptical machine (cardio) and a limited (20lbs) set of weights on the circuit machine. I figure I'd better work both the top and bottom half of my body or I'll end up with strong legs but won't be able to lift a pencil.

Of course I didn't hit the gym until 8pm and wasn't tired at 10 so I was up until midnight trying to wind down. Oh well, that's better than a 4am alarm to get up and workout. I know that morning sessions are more effective, but damn... 4am - no thanks.

Have a wonderful wonderful day!

Tuesday, December 18, 2007

Taken out of context that sounded bad....

Standing in the bathroom at work today (washing my hands) someone walked in and greeted me. 

Them: "Hi, how are you doing?"
Me: "Pretty great, but I'm realizing my hair looks terrible,  it's all fuzzy and wacky today.  I guess I should always remember,"  (door opens as someone else walks in) "that half a blow job is not good enough."

The new lady just stared at me as I tried to recover…

"I, um, meant blow dryer, hair… ok, I gotta go"

Monday, December 17, 2007

One Month Out

Today marks the one month anniversary since my surgery... or as they say on the online support groups... "Surgiversary" - that's a word fitting for the Fictionary.

I'm still in a holding pattern with my weight, I'm "stuck" at about 30 pounds down. That's NOTHING to sneeze at, and I'm loving my new thinner frame.

I had hoped to hit 250 before Christmas, but with only 8 days to go, I don't see it happening. I seem to be holding at 261...

I haven't been meeting the protein goals so today I'm trying a new product called New-Whey Liquid Protein. This little 3 ounce bullet has 42 grams of protein and no sugar. It's very efficient. The only problem is that they've added so much splenda that it tastes like ass. I'm hoping that a different flavor tastes better. I'm having a little bit of trouble getting these 3 ounces in. You have to drink it over ice which makes it more than 3 ounces.

When my shipment arrives I'll store those suckers in the fridge so that I can shoot them down without the ice.

So, other than not losing weight (for now) I feel fan-damn-tastic! I was worried that the surgery would be top of mind for all time, but it's not. I'm able to focus on real life, and I'm getting back into the swing of taking care of my people vs. the other way around.

Now, all I really need to do is:
Finish Christmas Shopping
Write and send my holiday cards
Straighten up the house
pay bills
wrap Christmas presents
deal with Countrywide on the property tax thing
deal with Valley Medical on the bill for my surgery. (I pre-paid, but am still getting a bill for $27 Thousand dollars - I pre-paid and that bill is over an above the stated surgery amount. It's a mistake, but unsettling none the less.)
And.... well I think that's it before Christmas.

Oh, gotta run... work.

If I have a moment tonight I'll take a new round of pictures so you can see my progress.

Sunday, December 16, 2007

Messy Martha an update

So, Messy Martha, the depressed aunt of the north is still living in squalor. I had a very long discussion with my dad and then MM today. We are ALL in agreement that SHE can NOT come and live with either my parents or me. It did cross my mind in a fit of insanity - but the blissful quiet of my home brought me back to reality.

I'm working with MM's type A friend Barb to bring in a squad of folks from Labor Ready to do some intensive cleaning. So, I'm throwing money at the problem for right now. Not much, but enough to make a difference.

My level of guilt over not taking care of my elderly relative is lower than it was, and I think that my small investment will help.

I'll be talking with the DSHS social worker to discuss the future because I can't believe that once she reaches the "must" be in a nursing home stage and she can't afford it that she'll be pushed to the curb. Right now, assisted living would be a great to have, but it isn't medically necessary.

It should be a fun spring! I will be soliciting volunteers for a day of fun to the north. Don't worry if you get a call I'll be offering all sorts of compensation.

Saturday, December 15, 2007

Back to Me

The first week back to work started off well. I bragged to a friend Monday morning that things were quiet and I was getting a lot done. Well, be careful when you brag, usually that's a good sign that something is about to go really wrong.

My boss called me into a "mandatory meeting" at 12:45 Monday and he was there with my supervisor (not so super, but that's a different issue) and he tells me that he has been told to cut X% from our budget and that we will be losing some positions.

My eyes must have jumped out of my head because he then quickly said... "oh, it isn't you." (um whew) Then he launched into his though process and told me that I was losing someone on my team.

Oh man, the timing, the thought process it all blows. I'm thankful (selfishly) that I didn't get to participate in the decision process as my conscience is a little clear, but I'm not at all absolved from any feelings of guilt and sadness.

The Departed (TD) and I were not on the same page and a separation was in the works, but it didn't involve leaving the company. Needless to say, TD didn't say so long to me - which I understand.

So the rest of my week involved getting my hands into the job that TD was supposed to be doing. Holy Mother of Pearl... the work queue is so back logged that it will take me weeks to get it clear. I will be able to cross train some of the other team members, but wow... it's a damned mess.

In addition to getting things caught up, I have to work on how to re-tool the service dramatically. The newish big boss (the decider) thinks we should stop doing it altogether. That's an idea, but I seriously doubt it would fly with the regulators and auditors.

At this point my attitude is "I'll work as hard as I can, and get as much done as I can, but since you amputated my leg (which was only broken) it might take me a while to reach the finish line." I'm certainly NOT going to work 80 hours a week to do my job and TD's job.

All in all, the first week back at work... SUCKED. I look good, but I don't really care about that at this moment in time.

Friday, December 14, 2007

Saga of the Nutty Aunt

So, Messy Martha up in Bellingham had her visit with the social worker and it turns out that her retirement income disqualifies her for assistance.

She doesn't have enough money coming in to pay for an assisted living facility, and clearly can't live alone.

I got an e-mail from the friend (who has been so great) saying that it's time for the family to think about what we're going to do.

One word comes to mind....

F * U * C * K

---ignoring it until tomorrow morning. I'll call my parents and have a "meeting." Save your money folks, you aren't going to be 35 forever.

Thursday, December 13, 2007

Rules are Rules

There's a lot of little rules for a successful life after weight loss surgery.  The doctor, nutritionist and all the online support groups are very clear about certain things:

1) don't eat after you've reached the "full" stage
2) don't drink 30 minutes before you eat
3) don't drink 30 minutes after you eat
4) no gummy bread
5) avoid sugary treats

These are RULES and not guidelines.  I think I over did it at lunch today. I was reading and finished all of my little 1/2 cup of chili because it tasted so good and then mindlessly picked up the water bottle and chugged about one and a half ounces of water in one glorious mouthful. 

I am burping and feel really heavy in my chest right now.  I need to either throw up or breath through it for the next 15 minutes.  I refuse to throw up at work so I'm breathing through. 

Stupid stupid stupid!  Perhaps the days of mindlessly eating at my desk with the Internet Browser up are over. 

Monday, December 10, 2007

1st day back

So far it's been quiet, which is good.  I know you'll be shocked to learn that I don't ALWAYS want to be the center of attention. 

I am looking really good today new haircut, good pants, heals, and a cute grey vest over a white top with French cuffs.  Oh I'm rocking the banking world today!

Funny thing tho' my weight has stayed the same for the last week.  This is called a stall - and after losing almost 30 pounds since surgery day it is clear that my body is taking a little time out.  I can hear it saying "WHAT THE *F* DID YOU DO TO ME!?  I NEED *ALL* OF THIS FLUB TO SURVIVE.  I GAVE YOU 30 - BUT YOU'RE NOT TAKING ANY MORE!!!"

What my poor body doesn't know (but my head does) is that these little stalls are normal and help the body maintain.  The goal is not to get frustrated or wander into to the headspace of thinking - "I did all this for 30 damned pounds!?"  Those aren't healthy thoughts.  The other thing (later on) is that once the workouts get more regular then weight stalls could be attributed to muscle gain. I'm not there yet -(Sunday was all about the couch)  but I will.  I'll be back on the sliding scale soon enough.

The one good thing about a stall is that I get to wear these cute pants a little longer.  After all, I had them hemmed and everything!

I also think being back to work will help with maintaining a regular eating schedule.  It's pretty easy to regulate the intake during the work day - yesterday (aka Couch Day) was a mini eating festival.  Of course the dynamics of that has changed - I'm limited to about 6 ounces an hour but I managed to have almost nothing but treats yesterday.  Sugar free popsicles, sugar-free pudding, low fat popcorn! (yeah!!!) , cottage cheese (not a treat, but it tastes like one), grapes (oh golly those were so good) and cheese. No meat, no protein drink, just snacks.  Here's how the food breaks out:

S-F Popsicles = count as water intake
S-F pudding = counts as milk
Popcorn = fiber
Cottage cheese = protein
Grapes = sugar and goodness
Cheese = protein

Here's a weird fact - some people have to peel their grapes.  I apparently can stomach almost anything!  Had no trouble with the grapes.  I did have *issues* with the toast I tried to eat - so for now, tp gal and toast are still not friends.  Boo.  However, peanut butter on a whole wheat cracker… GOOD.

Friday, December 07, 2007

My last day off...

Oh what a wonderful three weeks it's been. I'm ready (sort of) to go back to work, I'm in a smaller size (or more depending on the brand of clothing) and looking forward to starting a normal routine.

Don't get me wrong, I could get use to not working - EVER. Somehow I've managed to keep a pretty normal sleep schedule - I was worried that without mom here I'd start staying up late and getting up at noon - but in the last three weeks the latest I've slept in was 9 am (and that was after a 2 hour break from sleeping between 4 and 6am.) I have been getting up at 7:30 (or earlier - ick) pretty much every day. Hopefully the transition to the 5 am Monday wakeup won't be so terrible.

Even though Janie and I spent a good two hours out and about today I decided it was time to walk my (smaller) butt to the workout area. I just completed 30 minutes on the eliptical trainer. Oh how I love that machine - arms, core, legs AND sweating in fluid motions. It's wonderful!

Hopefully that, and focusing on getting the right amount of water in (I'm WAY behind the curve there) the dramatic results will continue.

Janie and I found the $4.99 sale rack at Macy's today and I picked up some cute things in all sorts of smaller sizes! At this point it doesn't matter if it doesn't fit now, because in no time it will!!!

I do have one piece of sad news. About two years ago I bought this really pretty green silk dress at Nordstrom (super on sale) and told myself that I would lose 20 lbs and be able to wear it. Well, now that I'm down (56+ lbs) the damn thing is too big! FRICK. It has the tags on it and everything. I know, you're thinking take it back - but I think I'd need the receipt.

Can't ramble, Rico is taking me out tonight so I gots ta shower and get pretty.

Happy Friday everybody!

Wednesday, December 05, 2007

Wednesday's Blather

Took my car in today to see why the check engine light was on. The reason? Volkswagen needed $375 - that's why. Apparently the falange or sprockethook was out of spec and badly needed to be reinstalled. Uh, I don't quite get how something that is no longer the preferred item in the car should be MY financial issue, but the cashier wasn't having any of my flogic on that topic.

I dropped the car off at 8 am and they dropped me at the Bellevue Square Mall at 8:15. I knew it would be a long day, but it really kicked my ass. I did manage to do the following:

a) 8:15 non-fat decaf coffee with old people (read 60 pages of my book)
b) 10:00 got a haircut (cute)
c) 10:50 had links taken out of my watch. Thank you Ben Bridge for not charging me!!!!!
d) 11:20 Picked up my eyeliner at Sephora (and spent an additional $100 on "stuff." Pretty perfume, makeup remover, a lipstick and a make up tool - if you must know.)
e) 12:00 Scowered the sale racks at the Bon... oops, Macy's. Found a H*O*T black dress to wear in a couple sizes and a replacement pink turtleneck sweater for the one I'm swimming in. (Used a gift card, so those items only cost $14!)
f) 12:30 Had soup and the insides of three pot stickers from World Wraps. When I say soup, I mean about two tablespoons.
g) 1:00 worked my way to Starbucks for a tall, non-fat, decaf, sugar-free gingerbread latte. (even the cashier laughed at me for that order.) Read for about 2 hours.
h) 2:00 realized that I had a date to hang out with Melinda today and I totally FORGOT. SHIT, I am a terrible friend. (Called Mel on her home number, and her cell...begging forgiveness.) She's got a good heart and forgave me but I am MORTIFIED.
i) 3:00 walked over to the container store - bought 6- 4 ounce containers for lunch brining in my new work life.
j) 3:25 found a chair and read some more.
k) 3:30 - phone call from VW - car is done! The shuttle will call soon for a pick up time.
l) 4:15 - I call back, um, still waiting
m) 4:30 - a call! 30-40 minutes. (urg)
n) killed some time (and $70) at Talbots. Two more smaller tops!
o) 5:15 back to VW to part with $$$ in the least fun way.
p) 7:00 (damned traffic) arrived home to find a beautiful wreath on my door. (Melinda)
q) 7:02 another phone call to Mel to thank her for being so wonderful
r) 8:39... posting and then... BED.

Tuesday, December 04, 2007

Tuesday News

Oh, I have absolutely nothing to report today. My Monday plans got canceled due to the terrific rain so I took the car to Les Schwab and had the tires rotated (woo hoo) and took my stash of good quality smaller clothes to the dry cleaner to give them a spiff up. That was pretty much my whole day.

Today I'm hanging out with the house cleaner people. (I really don't like being here sitting on my ass while they clean, but it is what it is.) They just got here, so I've really spent my day picking up crap around the house so all they have to do is the actual cleaning. It's a good system.

The office is an area that they don't clean (mostly because when I arranged for the service the office area was a F*cking Mess and I didn't want to deal with it. Now that mom has been here and gone and piles of stuff (clothes, shoes, ugly purses) have made their way to GoodWill the office isn't looking so bad. I moved some stuff around today (the printer and my dresser and made a nice little nook see:

I didn't have a photo for the white frame, so I dropped in some coordinating paper for a subtle touch. The lamp was on my grandfather's desk when he retired, so I think technically it is stolen property from the Washington State Patrol (circa 1965). I think the brass ads a nice contrast to all the purple.

It's going to be a hard day for cat. Not only are there strangers in the house, but the vacuum has been out running. At 3:30 my friend Aide will be brining over her kids so she can get the Christmas shopping done. They are going to hang out until the evening. I'm sure I'll sleep like a baby tonight!

My thought was to bring out the arts and crafts and set the kids up to make their dad (who is in Iraq) some christmas cards. Little gabe - LOVES Peter. I"m not quite sure how Peter feels about their friendship but maybe it works for him too. I do know that there are treats involved - which Peter does love.

My only worry about baby sitting is that my house is pretty much a treat free zone. I don't have any kid snacks unless you count the sugar free popcicles. (Although, those are mine and I don't really want to share.)

Well, that's about it. Tomorrow I'm off to get the Jetta serviced, which means dropping the car off and then hanging out at the mall until it's ready. Bummer - I may have to see a movie. Drat.

I also need to finish reading my book group book so I may be coffee shop hopping too. I am a little apprehensive about being out for the day away from the standard food supply, but I'll just make up a bunch of little meals and carry it with me. I'll be fine.

Sunday, December 02, 2007

Fashion No-No

I don't like to poke fun at others... ha ha ha ha I totally do!

I wish I could have captured this outfit in a standing position because it had the matching leggings.

The explosion of fabric flowers in her hair really make this ensemble POP!

The tennis shoes are also a great touch.

Saturday, December 01, 2007


In the midst of all this weight loss hoopla I did manage to book my trip to Greece. I'll be on the 5:35 flight to London October 1st, 2008 and will leave Athens for the UK and then home on the (get this) 22nd!

Yes, that is a crazy long time to be gone, but baby, I don't care! The sailboats leave from a little island called Keci Buku (in Turkey) at 11am on the 5th which gives me 3 days to tour Athens and get to Keci Buku.

Fourteen days later we arrive in the port town of Lakki on the Greek Island of Leros. I will then have 3 days to get back to Athens.

So, while I keep my mind on getting well, and continuing to lose weight, I'll also be dreaming of beautiful fall nights on the sailboat with my new friends (and hot vacation lover.) Oops, TMI?

Get over it, I'll be hot, he'll be hot... it's inevitable.

An interesting question

Becky came over last night and we had a power visit. She and I have a great talking pace - if anyone else could hear it they'd be amazed.

She is moving down a path of weight loss too and is doing really well. (Go Becky!!!!!) She raided my closet for an accessory to wear to a holiday party. (I almost said holiday sweater, but that brought to mind visions of Reindeer embroidered on a green background with a jingle bell for a nose. *shiver*)

We were in my (home) office and she was looking at all the pictures of me with the people I love, wedding photo's from June & Haji, Becky's own wedding photo, me and the girls the night of the Duran Duran (2006) concert, me and Seal. Becky asked "What happens when you get really skinny, will you look at those pictures and hate the girl in the photo?"

Wow, great question! I don't think so, because in each one of the photo's I display I'm genuinely happy. The photo brings back that feeling of joy and love that I feel for and get in return from my friends. The only photo I have posted that I DON'T love is the one of Seal and me. I look like a bright red blob and I can't see "me" in it at all.

I hope that I always love the girl in the photo no matter what her size. I just took some comparison photos. I couldn't decide which looked best, so here's a bunch:

Before (The Seal and the Whale):