Archive for February 2010

Hurts So Good

February 27, 2010

The past couple of months I’ve been on a little health kick. Although for me this change hasn’t been so little. It’s actually been kinda huge. I’ve not eaten ANYTHING with sugar, corn syrup, honey, nothing even with artificial sweeteners, no “diet” fake sweet foods, etc. during this time. The only sweetness I’ve had has come from apples, strawberries, and grapefruit. In addition to that, I haven’t had any starches. No bread, pasta, beans, potatoes of any kind, cookies, cakes, etc. Oh yes, and let us not forget that I’ve had absolutely NO dairy. My diet has pretty much consisted of lean meats (a few varieties of fish and seafood, chicken, and lean red meat), lettuce, tomatoes, cucumbers, and the fruits I mentioned above. Add to the list unsweetened green tea (yuck) and tons and tons of water, and that’s all folks.

In the beginning it was incredibly difficult, more mentally than anything else. I have always  LOVED bread and pastas, as well as treats. Oh blessed frosted sugar cookie from Hagermans, how I love thee. And the single sized lemon bundt cake from Nothing Bundt Cakes, we will always have our memories. My dear sweet chocolate… I can’t believe I’ve gone this long without you.

Why in the name of all that is good would I do this? I took on this challenge because, after a lot of reading and research, I began to buy into the idea/theory that refined sugars as well as all refined and processed foods are kinda, well, evil. I love them, but the are not so good for me (or anyone else for that matter).

Despite the early difficulties, I feel so much better physically. I feel more energetic, less fatigued, and generally just healthier. And the GOOD news is this at times torturous and horrible part of the journey is over (the part that I think of as the “cleanse” whose goal was to break my body’s dependence and desire for less than ideal foods). At this point I can now add healthy fats and dairy, which will be such a nice change. And in the following weeks I’ll slowly add in whole grains and as well as sugars (although in moderation). But until then, I will be happy with my new additions, especially my Laughing Cow wedges (I had one with some smoked salmon for lunch… seriously, soooo good!).

I’m not going to say that I will never indulge in the occasional  sugar cookie or a piece of cake at a birthday party, because I’m sure at times I will. But I’m really making an effort to more conscious about what I put into my mouth and therefore, into my body. The best part of this whole process is that I think it actually worked! Part of the idea is that once you get out of the habit of eating crap, you get over wanting it. I’m not really craving treats like I used to. Yeah, a cookie sounds OK but honestly a steak salad or an apple with cheese sounds better.

Here’s hoping I stick to my guns so that less sticks to my guts.

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Whirlwind

February 18, 2010

Every day I keep thinking that I need to post an update on what’s happening in my world. But as the days fly by, it all gets away from me, and then I find myself thinking “so much has happened, where do I begin and what do I even say?”.

One step at a time, right?

OK, Arizona (yeah, I know it was almost 2 weeks ago). It was BEEEE-UTIFUL! The weather, the resort, our awesome room, the wonderful spa… everything. It was wonderful being able to get away with the Mr. and to have some time to ourselves all while enjoying a nice change in climate and surroundings. Not only the was the “vacation” portion of the trip awesome, the “business” part went better than I expected. I’m on the board of a foundation who (among other things) gives money to various organizations and charities. MY cause (which I am very passionate about) got an unheard of amount of money (at least relative to what they usually give)… the full amount I requested. Maybe it was my embarrassing and very unexpected and unwelcome blubbering. Maybe I’m the master of public speaking (not). Whatever it was, it worked and I am thrilled to be able to be a part of something that help children and their families and literally change lives. Woo hoo! It made my week. I still get excited when I think about it.

Valentine’s Day weekend was splendid as well. I LOVE the kids – they are my life – but I really appreciate the few nights a month Greg and I get to spend alone. We never got any kind of “honeymoon” period because we were thrust into parenting not our usual 2 and 3, but a whooping 5 kids, full-time. The weekend was not only romantic but we also got TONS done. We cleaned, organized, made trips to our storage unit, and just in general kicked ass AND took names. It was great at the end of the day to look at all of the great progress we made. I love the feeling of a productive day, and BONUS… we got to do it together!

Tuesday was my monthly “date with one of my kids” night. I know I’ve said it before, but I absolutely love and look forward to this! This month was Ian’s turn. We decided to get some dinner and then catch the new movie, Percy Jackson & the Olympians: The Lightning Thief. He was in the mood for a burger and fries, and since we were tight on time, we headed to the burger joint, SNAPPY’S, inside Jordan Commons. Ian seemed to really enjoy the food, especially the Oreo shake :). The movie was what I expected (not wonderful, not bad, somewhat entertaining), but Ian liked it and that was all that mattered. I had a lot of fun getting to spend that time alone with him. I adore that kid!

At the end of each week I go into the next hoping that it’ll be a little less chaotic, that I’ll have a little more down time, that I’ll have to put up with less crap that is redonkulous, and that I’ll actually get 8 hours of sleep. Rarely does any of it actually happen, and there are some days that the demands on me make it feel like I’m getting dragged into quicksand and on the verge of going under. But the truth is, even with all stress and strain and  running around trying to get everyone where they need to be and everything done that needs to get done, I love my life. I love my friends, my dog, my children and family, and my husband. I’m so very grateful that I have the choice and ability to stay home with our 5 children, volunteer at their school A LOT, arrange play dates, run them to all of their various activities, and cook dinner every night. I’m thankful to be married to a man that keeps his commitments and takes pride in working hard to provide for all of us. I’m one lucky woman.

Yesterday was the anniversary of my brothers death. There isn’t an edge to the pain like there used to be years ago, but this DAY has sort of loomed over my head and created a shadow all week. I’ve lived longer without him than I did with him, but even after 22 years, I still miss him. I wonder what kind of man he would have been. Would he have been a husband and father? The next Einstein? I’ll never know, and I guess that is what’s hardest for me. What I wouldn’t give to know him now. At some point, I think I will have that opportunity. Until then, I love you bro!

The 10 Things I LOVE About You (no, not you… YOU!)

February 14, 2010

Dedicated to my best friend and lover, otherwise known as my husband:

1. What a dedicated father you are.

2. How your favorite place to lay your head at night is on my stomach.

3. When you surprise me with flowers or my favorite treat.

4. That you make cd’s for our trips filled with our favorite songs.

5. When you call me from work, just to say hi and I love you.

6. Watching you play and have fun with all of the kids.

7. That you work hard to provide for all of us.

8. Your funny sense of humor.

9. The way I feel during our “moments”.

10. That you love me!

Happy Valentines Day sweetie!

It’s Not So Bad

February 11, 2010

Valentines Day is not a favorite on some peoples list. I get it. It’s one of those greeting card holidays… an excuse to force us to consume more and more, buy into yet another holiday, blah blah blah. That might be true, but despite it, I like Valentines Day. Maybe it is a b.s. holiday, but with hectic schedules and crazy demands placed on us, I think that most people need a reminder once a year to REALLY stop and think about their significant other and how wonderful they are.

The other day I was watching The Food Network (I’d never watched it before, but starting about 5 days ago, it’s become one of my favorites), and one of the chefs said something so amazingly simple but incredibly poignant to me. “I would hate being in a marriage where it was a lot of hard work. Ours (speaking of her husband and herself) is so simple. He wants me to be happy and I want him to be happy”.

So it’s not a quote from Socrates, but I love it! It is in complete harmony with my theory (formed sometime after my divorce) about how to have a happy marriage. I don’t always follow my own advice, but it’s a work in progress :). I believe that if you are both doing things to make the other one happy and fulfilling their needs without worrying about your own, and they do the same, everyone’s needs are taken care of and the desire to do more and BE more for each increases. Not to mention that respect, love, happiness and admiration for each other grows in an awesome vicious cycle. The DOING it may be a little tricky, but the times I’ve put it into practice it has always worked.

Come Sunday, whether you like, dislike, agree with or think it’s all crap, take the time to really let your better half know what they mean to you. You don’t need to spend a lot money. You can make a nice dinner at home, make them a thoughtful card, and just enjoy each other. Maybe even make a commitement to yourself that from this point forward, you’ll keep things simple and just work on doing things to make your loved one happy. It’s a worthy investment.

Farewell Utah

February 4, 2010

Here’s a side note to my post before it’s even begun. Tuesday night we went to a broadway play, Avenue “Q” (thanks Mom & Dad). I didn’t have any idea what it was about but it was definitely NOT what I expected. It was HILARIOUS! And so incredibly raunchy and sexually charged that I was slightly mortified watching it with my parents and somewhat conservative sister and her hubby. I’ve seen my share of plays (my parents get season tickets to all the plays that come through the Capital and Kingsbury Hall), but this was unlike anything I had seen before. Many of the characters were puppets and yet still humans. So hard to explain, but for me it was like Sesame Street on ecstasy. Good times.

In other news, I’m off to a land of warm(er) delights this weekend. Arizona to be exact. The purpose is more business than pleasure, but I”ll do my damndest to squeeze as much pleasure out of the get away that I can . If I have anything to say about it, it’ll be a 25/75 split (pleasure being the later of course).

Courtesy of the foundation which I happen to sit on the board, we are really looking forward to this weekend. I shall partake in a much-anticipated spa resort massage while Greg gets to golf on an amazing course (who will host some big pro tourney the week after we leave. And yes, that is an actual picture of the golf course). Woo hoo!

All I need now is to 1) get over this stupid flu that decided to beotch slap me yesterday, 2) pack, and 3) leave the house relatively clean. And #3 is negotiable. The logistics of scheduling the kids whereabouts and care taking can be a little overwhelming, but I think it’s all figured out and I, for one, plan on taking this opportunity to relax. Tucson, HERE I COME!