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Monday, June 29, 2015

Still Tired

I couldn't wake up this morning, yawning on the way to work, lethargic about my duties once there. It was a treat when the server went down and after lunch I headed home. So much of our work these days is computer centric; how far fetched are the stories about ending civilization as we know it by bringing down the tech? Probably not so very.

After a nap at home I picked up A and we had a good prevening together. Now I am ready to lie down again and let myself drift off. It's gotten to the point that I may be afraid enough to start taking better care of myself. All of the determination that comes and goes has ebbed to an all time low; wasn't it only days ago I was feeling so positive I was on an upward spiral? Wrong.

My dogs are killing me, and I am giving up the ghost.

Sunday, June 28, 2015

A Cinderella Shower

It's been a long strange weekend for me. Trying to stay active picking up around the house, getting ready to go to a co-workers bridal shower, fretting about the state of the house seen through another's eyes. I don't stress about that so much anymore, it's more of an opportunity to think to myself that I would rather live in neat surroundings, that I would like to be proud of my home.

Instead the poor house is falling apart bit by bit, and I know it's my fault to one degree or another. But I am so tired at the moment I can't even think about it.

The shower was very nice, and it was good to see the Bride to be so happy and surrounded by those who care about her. There is more, but it will have to wait for tomorrow. I'm wiped out.

Thanks to J's help I did bring home a 'diamond' ring for A; that's my happy note for today's end.

Saturday, June 27, 2015

Chinese Food Coma

I spent the day picking up the front of the house (living\dining room) and sorting through the bags and piles of papers that A has been bringing home from school since we sorted and put everything away for the holidays - six months ago. I saved anything artistic or special and recycled all of the normal 'workbook' type exercises. Then I sorted again and boxed most of it away marked for her Kindergarten year. T-K is already boxed up and in the garage. At this rate she will overtake all of the storage I have at my command in a few more years. I'm sure at some point the 'rents will sort through it again and save only special pieces, but it is all special now. R's experience in Kindergarten thirty some years ago was nothing like this new Pinterest version of the class and there are so many fun and beautiful projects I couldn't throw away. So everything I wanted to keep has been boxed and will be in the garage later tonight after it cools down.

Half way through the day I stopped for an awesome pedicure at Be U on Larkspur, between Sushi and the Tattoo parlour. I'll have to find their face page and 'like' them or review them on Yelp. By the time she was done I was super relaxed, my feet felt so fresh and clean and smooth, and my nails were nicely painted a beautiful coral colour. I will definitely go back again.

The Fam went to the Fair today and I knew they would be tired too so we splurged and had Chinese Food delivered. YUM. And no dishes.
Time to get the boxes out to the garage and then finally get my feet back up before the coma sets in. It felt good to accomplish something today in addition to the usual laundry and dishes. Now I can relax tomorrow and enjoy a bridal shower, if such a thing is possible! Oh the torture!

Thursday, June 25, 2015

“Usually I'm remarkably good natured. Try me on a day that doesn't end in y.” Cassandra Clare

I don't have any book credits available for a new audio book, and haven't been to the library, and can't find anything (ok, I'm just being lazy) in the NorCal digital library so I am once again back in the world of Mortal Instruments. I watched 'A Fault in our Stars' yesterday and my grandmother's phrase 'weeping copiously' would have described both me and the actress very accurately. Anyway, in the movie she is diagnosed as being depressed because she kept reading the same book over and over.

I know I have suffered from (been challenged by) mild depression my whole life, but am I now actually depressed? If I listen to the whole series again it will have been maybe the fourth time in two years. Worse case scenario, five times. Eh. I could be addicted to worse things.

This morning I decided to make the hour round trip drive to pick up the replacement Thumbie I had ordered a few weeks ago. It was dreadful driving up to the mortuary, and opening the door I was so nauseous - another manifestation of grief as weird as it sounds. Or rather a symptom of stress which I was feeling most acutely.  Anyway, eventually my original one will show up, it's in this room somewhere, and then I will be able to put this one safely away until it's time one day to give it to A. She has asked for one a couple of times before and it was on my Honey-do list anyway.

But a little grumpiness followed me throughout the day at work. Luckily that was dispelled by a couple of hours at the pool with the girls, A & S. I stayed in for more than an hour treading water most of the time and my shoulders and arms are feeling it tonight. Good for me.

Now it's the end of a hot day, we are tired and the house is stuffy, and A and I are both going to bed with pool hair. I'm just glad I'm not the one brushing out her long thick locks tomorrow! The ends of which are already turning coppery. I see a ketchup shampoo in her future.

Leftover pizza for dinner was not a good idea, the heartburn already slowly rising. But the large crunchy carrot I had with it was a good idea, as was the big salad I enjoyed for lunch that was full of sprouts, cucumbers and pepitas. More  plants every day, that is the mission. Oh, and NO added sugar today except what may have been in the pizza. Wait. Google. 3g in a slice and I had two. Not bad. Half of a daily allowance for me as an older female according to some. WHO published earlier this year that our goal should be to get less than 25g a day or less than 10% of your daily calories, which for me is somewhere around 15g-18g. So I am good today.

I did think about stopping for an apple pie from Sprouts today (THE best around) but instead came home and immediately got ready and left for the pool without even a snack. Except Water.

Tomorrow I will look for a charm bracelet or chain for my new Thumbie; it will be nice to have it to wear to a bridal shower I must attend Sunday. But that is another story.

Wednesday, June 24, 2015

His Dark Materials

“We shouldn't live as if [other worlds] mattered more than this life in this world, because where we are is always the most important place.” 
― Philip PullmanThe Amber Spyglass

I am sad to come to the end of this trilogy. I had read the first book many years ago, and listened to the 2nd a couple of years ago, but somehow never made it to the third. I cried at the end, at the beauty of these imagined worlds, at the partings of the characters, at the idea of this human experience being more important than what may come next.

Because that is another bolt hole I have; my experiences of another reality, and that someday I get to 'go back' to where it's not so chaotic and hurtful and harsh. Of course I know that it's entirely possible that I have been upon occasion a little bit delusional in order to deal with the realities of this world. But it's much more comforting to believe in the experiences I have had than to think I have wasted this one opportunity to really experience a life that offers so many delights in this human form.

We do what we can. I will try to behave as if this life is the most important one. That where I am is the most important place. Heaven can wait.

Tuesday, June 23, 2015

A Tale of two cookies

Sometimes I have dinner early, as in driving through for a bean and salsa burrito on the way home at 4pm. If I don't go to bed and fall asleep by 9pm I find myself ravenously hungry. Even on a day like today when I was sure to hydrate adequately.

So I found myself doing something that has cropped up again of late; standing in front of the refrigerator with both doors wide open releasing cool air up and down my body while I peruse the items in vain for something 'I want'. A half eaten apple (we do live with a six year old), some honeydew melon, PB of course, drawers full of crisp delicious veggies that are not even in the running for selection, and an odd assortment of leftovers that I was not keen to open.

I remember the three years I was eating well and this whole 'browsing to no avail' experience just disappeared from my life. In Other Words, when I get enough nutrients I am not driven back into hunt and gather mode.

In the end I found two bakery cookies all alone in the bottom of a bag the kids had thrown in the wooden bowls that live on the back corner of the kitchen counter where they are waiting their turns to be filled with the afore mentioned crisp and delicious veggies (think salad.) The cookies were oatmeal with raisins and nice if not wonderful (it could have been both better and worse, there could have been chocolate involved) but do I remember the enjoyment of eating them? No. I remember the frustration of standing in front of the fridge. So not satisfying at all and I am sure there will be heartburn later since I ate them on an empty stomach. Yes I have tums by my bed. Another habit that had become obsolete but is now once again ordinary.

I really enjoyed living without heartburn. I really enjoyed having my size 14 jeans (ok, stretch jeans) fit comfortably. I enjoyed hiking and shooting and swimming without feeling like a whale. I say happiness should be enough of an incentive to stick with good habits and I want to know why it isn't. Really. Why.

Focus on the positive, remember what it feels like to make healthy choices, stop the damn heartburn in it's tracks. No more bread, tortillas or cookies for a while - heartburn is one pain I can fix so I shall do it. I shall.

Monday, June 22, 2015

Monday's attitude

I think it would be fair to say that most of us worker bees fall into two categories of a Monday morning. We either face the new week with optimism or dread the week ahead already pining for the coming Friday. I tend to be an optimist, and with two nights of hard sleep and dreams and not waking until close to seven am each of the following mornings I feel refreshed and ready to do battle. I made my decaf at home, threw some fruit and veggies into my lunch bag, and headed out onto the big bad Monday morning traffic.

I had lain in bed last night realizing that the damage I do to myself isn't about my past failures - my go to excuse for all my current problems - instead it's about my present and future failures that may occur or be occurring because even as I swear I have not given up, my actions tell a different tale. How is laying about watching movies most of the weekend a good example for A? How is it preparing me for the challenges that lay ahead in my life? I don't need to regain my former athletic shape, I just need to be active and show a healthy respect for my body, my life, my continuing existence so that I am ready for whatever comes next. So that my life is something I can share and not hide from in embarrassment having made my worth about my mistakes and not about my resiliency.

It's easy when coming to a hard moment or hour or day to think, "But it's right I feel this way, after all I failed my son, and I can never recover from that."  This happens more often than I care to admit, my get out of caring free card. Not attending events, becoming somewhat of a hermit, living in size 18 clothes that I hate. It's all part and parcel of the same dysfunction. Maybe it's all the nuts and seeds I've been eating lately, but for whatever reason I was clear headed last night, I was calm and filled with the normal feeling I embrace so dearly when it arrives apparently out of the blue to visit.

I made a conscious decision this morning to NOT stop for a fast food breakfast. I made myself take the time to brew coffee at home and was glad there was a banana to take in the car to break my fast. I truly felt the reality that this one positive act could change my life, could lead to another positive decision later in the day, and that I could keep this up indefinitely.

Belief is a marvelous feeling. I could move mountains this morning, even this ungainly one I have been living in for the past few years. And as I have prayed before, please let this feeling last. Please let my core of strength and goodness continue to make its presence felt.

Saturday, June 20, 2015

Laundry Day

All of the dog blankets must be washed today. Full of Peet's decaf and cream I am a laundress going about her work as if there were nothing else in the world to do. The day was interspersed with snacks and naps, and with both girls coughing and congested I can't help but think I am fighting something off...yet again. Of course it's a handy excuse for being so tired but I know I am just grasping at straws, trying to blame this lethargy on anything but the obvious truth that it is exhausting hauling this weight around. I think to myself that I will just stop eating, and then I go make another snack.

And for the second night in a row there was ice cream for dessert. Just a small mini bar, but sugar. I hope I am not rebounding. Perhaps I need to start another 28 days tomorrow.Ha ha. another 28 days.

The heat kept me in the house almost all day. I did pick up groceries and returned the red box movie - that alone is an accomplishment; read as no extra fees and actually being a teensy bit responsible.

Now I am just irritable, having done too little to be really tired and yet ready to call it a day.

OMG, let's just do a little whining because that makes everything so much better.

A trip outside with the girls to see the plants shining so clear and bright by the moon sets my mood back on the positive side of the scale. Damn this hot house when it is so perfectly lovely outside. A whole house fan has been on 'the list' for years, but apparently the universe has not seen fit to provide one yet. We can build a space station but can't figure out how to suck the evening heat out of a house and store it to power the next day's AC.

And I'm back to whining so it's time to call it a day. Greens tomorrow, I need greens. And flax meal.

Friday, June 19, 2015


It was an unusually quiet day at work, and I enjoyed the peace. Getting a lot done, spending some time reviewing what was on my plate, and finally leaving my quiet clean office for the hustle and bustle of the Friday commute home. Even that wasn't horrific, I'm guessing the vacation season has begun. Yes!

A and I were both a little tired and opted for dinner at home and a movie. We picked up Day of Life from the red box at the grocery store along with a cheap and decidedly unhealthy dinner. Cuddling later on the couch we were content to do nothing but enjoy the show. Our small 'like it' containers of ice cream from Cold Stone disappeared as we watched the brightly coloured characters fly across the screen telling an old but timeless story of love.

PJ's, the brushing of the teeth, and the final tucking in of A left me to my own devices which turned out to be, unsurprisingly, bed for me too. At nine o'clock on a Friday night - Perfect.

Thursday, June 18, 2015

Life as a series of Day One's

There have been so many times in my life that I have attempted a diet, or a new habit, and just failed. So many times I have started over, talked myself out of a bad place, and played the Pollyanna game in an attempt to steer my path away from the pity pool and back up onto whatever wagon it was I had currently hitched my hopes upon. But I will not feel like a failure, that only happens when you quit trying and I am not there yet. My two months detoxing from sugar was not pristine, but it was a measurable accomplishment nonetheless. I know I already said this yesterday, but I wanted to remind myself that I made progress and that is worthy of notice. Baby steps are still steps, and every day I get a day one do-over.

We just watched Alexander and the horrible, terrible, no good, very bad day or whatever it was. Corny but cute, and fun to see a family resilient and loving and supportive no matter what came their way. And I am thankful tonight as I usually am for my own little family and how we keep fighting.

Today could have been worse. I went in to work early because I was leaving early for my much anticipated massage. Instead I worked overtime covering my co-workers ass because she hasn't had her shit together for quite a while and I didn't want to let my boss down. (She knew this had to be done, ignored it for weeks, then didn't come in the day it was promised.) So instead I let myself down, not to mention my friend\neighbor\therapist whose time I accidentally blew off so absorbed I was in getting the work done at the office. The day does fly by fast when I am focused, but this was not a day I wanted to disappear. Venting done.

R brought me home a Lemon Noosa yogurt; what a perfect dessert, better than lemon meringue pie, except that there are 30g of sugar in it. But i'm not going to weep about 5g of sugar over a daily limit when my other choices for the rest of the day were sugar free and I got to enjoy the richness of lemon curd in a rich and silky setting. Okay, I had to google the pie and as close as I can see there are probably 60g of sugar in a piece. See it was a good choice.

Tomorrow is Friday, and I get A after work as the 'rents are going to a show in the city (SF.) We will probably swim and pick up something fun for dinner and play a game before watching a show once we are (read 'I am') too exhausted to do anything else. She is a fun date and I am looking forward to it.

But for now I get to lay down and see what the boob tube has to offer a tired and emotionally spent girl.

Wednesday, June 17, 2015

Sugar Detox Redoux - Day 28/28

It's been approximately two months since I began to consciously withhold sugar from my decaf, honey from my tea, and 2pt ice creams from my normal daily routine. It's been six months since I ate any wrapped chocolate at work, or took seconds from a home made dessert brought in to celebrate a birthday. In those six months I have only gone to the corner store once for a pint of ice cream and eaten it alone. These are small but routine changes that certainly must have had an impact on my health. I haven't had any follow up bloodwork since January, but at the time my sugar levels were within the normal range. This wasn't about being afraid of diabetes, it was about hoping to remove the unexplained urges to eat when I obviously wasn't hungry.

Has it worked? Maybe. Maybe I need to be more stringent about removing all refined sugar. To say no when ice cream shows up in the fridge. To say no when a pudding cake arrives unbidden on the kitchen counter. To just always say no to sugar. I don't think I am there yet, but what I do know is that it's becoming easier. That my urges to eat are less if not gone. I rarely drive through for fast food after work, I often make breakfast at home now, and I feel this has been a good start to what needs to be a lifelong habit.

So I am calling this test a successful beginning as it has left me wanting to continue. To eat less sugar, to have less cravings, to remove empty calories leaving room for added nutrition. To keep striving to care more about what goes in my body, and just be more careful in general of myself.

I am worthy!

This was an exceptional day. A graduated Kindergarten with one of only three academic awards given to her class of 26. She is the class Author and Illustrator. Given my penchant for the written word I could not be more proud. She is now officially part of the HS graduating class of 2027. What!?  OMG.  See, I have to take care of myself so I can be there for her.

No sugar today! Lots of greens. Some nuts and seeds. Go me.

Tuesday, June 16, 2015

Sugar Detox Redoux - Day 27/28

Another warm day. Another struggle to 'put together an outfit' for work. I have lots of XL summer tops, all too tight right now, and I think about all of the Springs I have sorted through my clothing planning to thin out my wardrobe until there are only two sizes; maybe 12's and 14's. Dream away big girl. The funny thing is I still believe this will happen. I still have it in my head that someway and some how I will get back into my XL's and then finally back into mediums. There is no doubt, I know it for a fact.

My mood is once again improving; adding flax and seeds and greens back into my daily diet is doing it's work. I just need to keep building on that. No big plans, no expansive tracking sheets, just the hope that I can be devoted to making healthy choices most of the time. Unlike my cheese sandwich last night. Grrrr. It was one of those moments I was expecting to disappear now that I have been on the thyroid meds for a month; like someone else was making the sandwich and oh, here it is, I may as well eat it!

I wonder sometimes if there was a psychotic break years ago between Anne and Vail and these are the personalities that constantly battle inside of me. I am just about the start listening to the third book of the Dark Materials trilogy, and I can't help but associate this split as me and my daemon.  Neither bad nor good, just another aspect of myself. But always some type of duality going on, whether it's little angels and devils on my shoulders, or my inner athlete yelling at me while my calm pisces center yearns for meditation and oceansides and forest hiking. And here "I" am in limbo listening to no one, and actually working hard towards nothing as I try every day to lean into a positive cycle of nutrition and movement that will miraculously heal my assorted wounds and injuries both physical and mental, real and perceived.

So that is my request of the universe today; let me be driven, let me act on my own behalf, let me care and take strides to prove myself worthy of more than I am settling to be right now. Head back, arms held wide, hands facing towards the heavens, deep breaths in and then slowly out as I slowly let the universe fill me with light and calm and determination.
Dinner was a BLT. A huge slice of tomato, two slices of uncured bacon, whole grain bread, the small half of an avocado, lettuce and mayo. Divine, and a nod to lots of nutrition too. Whole grains, healthy fat, a bit of green - that's me, focus on the positive, forget the bacon and mayo and move on. And it was a serving, not a binge. God I'm bad. Moving on.

So a little sugar in the processed foods for dinner, but not much. No candy from work, no sugar in my decaf, only fruit and nuts (brazil/cashew mix)  for snacks. I know now that I will never be the girl who would grab three or four fun size chocolate bars from the counter and take them back to her desk to snack on during AP day. I haven't touched those since January. I'm not making any promises for halloween, but the idea of gorging on chocolate is...sickening actually. I have a candy bar of dark organic chocolate in the kitchen for when I really want the chocolate, but I think the days of ooey gooey little candy bars is gone. Have you ever read the ingredients? Ugh.

I know staying away from the processed sugar can only help, and I'm not stopping after tomorrow. I will probably stop tagging my posts as Sugar Detox, but just continue the practice until it's habit, and my confessions come less and less as I adapt.

Monday, June 15, 2015

Sugar Detox Redoux - Day 26/28

With Peet's dark french roast decaf and organic cream in my cup and yummy pb on toast with flax meal and bananas beside me resting on a paper towel I headed off to work full of my first batch of supplements and not an inkling of an itch to stop for fast food. Nice. Once at work the 2nd batch of supplements went down and I got to work. Damn pills. R says my goal is to be off all meds before I hit Medicare. Sounds like a reasonable plan.

Shopping at Sprouts for lunch I brought back to the office my favorite cheese enchilada entree by Amy's and a big box of spring greens. I had a perfectly ripe avocado already waiting for me at work, and throwing everything together with a small handful of pepita seeds (roasted not salted) and my homemade buttermilk dressing has left me full and longing for a nap. I did get my share of those over the weekend but there are never enough these days to satisfy my desire to lay down and float away. I know better than to eat enchiladas at work, but sometimes it's worth the following lethargy when I feel the need for something solid, and my taco salad last night just whetted my appetite for more of the same flavour profile.

Dinner was a potato sprinkled with magic mushroom mix, a pinch of sea salt, and lots of sour cream. I won't even pretend I tried to portion the dairy. Freshly ground pepper added the finishing touches and it was a dreamboat of a dinner. Super seed granola was dessert (a little added honey) and I thought I was done eating for the day.

A game of Yahtzee with A, an episode or two of Big Bang, and then SYTYCD LA auditions. I so love the dancing on this show; it transports me.

BUT THEN, the bread was calling me from the kitchen and not long afterwards I was indulging in a sharp cheddar cheese and crisp dill pickle sandwich. No added sugar, no meat, just extra calories at the end of the day that came under the heading of Want instead of Need. Or maybe it was both, who knows, but certainly it wasn't something my body required.

Two tylenol PM and off to finish watching the dancing from bed. Damn decaf.

Sunday, June 14, 2015

Sugar Detox Redoux - Day 25/28

This morning another small scoop of the SCC went into my coffee cup, and another went into A's bowl of skinned and diced peaches. We were both happy.

Breakfast for me was half a cold  potato with ketchup, lunch was a kale, cauliflower, sunflower seed salad with a serving of my newly mixed fresh homemade ranch. Such decadence.

A and I spent some time early today weeding, picking up dog messes and giving the weeping willow that intrudes into our yard from next door a hair cut. I gave the trees each a good watering, trimmed wayward new growth off of the back privet tree, and did an excellent job of filling up the large green waste bin with A's help. (She loves the ratcheting pruning shears.) If I do that each week it will make a huge difference in my attitude; I hate that I have let it go so long. Eventually the back yard needs to be drought tolerant and dog friendly, at least that is the goal. Baby steps.

After lunch the overdue books made it back to the library and I grocery shopped for R while she took A swimming. Dinners tonight, depending on the family member, are nachos and\or taco salads. Mine will be a salad with beans instead of the taco meat R is currently sauteeing in the kitchen. Meat is once again making me sort of grossed out and it's easier every day to abstain. Speaking of which, I picked up good organic whole grain bread and good peanut butter (ingredients: peanuts and salt) and bananas to make easy to eat in the car breakfast toast each day next week. And some Peet's decaf french roast. So much for saying no to coffee. It's not happening this week anyway. And some organic cream - no more sweetened condensed milk - so I can quit on the sugar again. It was only two servings, one each day, but the guilt of using something so thick and sweet and canned, well, the guilt is horrible and not worth it!

I know it's going to cool off this evening and I can hardly wait until it's time to open the windows and purge this air conditioned environment; I know it's not good for us.
Dinner was just what I like; a huge helping of crisp leafy greens brightened with a sweet colourful pepper accompanied by a touch each of healthy fat (avocado) and unhealthy dairy (organic sour cream) balanced with hot sauce. White corn tortilla chips and left over black beans and rice from a local taqueria rounded out the salad and I enjoyed every last bite. And here I am back to always talking about food; the bliss and bane of my life.

I could have achieved much more than I did this weekend, but it was better than the last one and I at least made a dent in my honey do list. Come on greens, do your work, restore my energy.

I remembered today that I haven't been getting in my flax meal so I will be sure to add that to breakfast each day next week. And I realized that probably a lot of my stress is pain related; I haven't been using any pain meds recently, instead just toughing it through. Except I don't, I become depressed and lay down to watch tv. Not good. Neither is using the ibuprofen\acetaminophen cocktail several times a day but at least I get more done and stay on my feet. I've been fighting this battle so long I forget sometimes how the choices impact my mood and choices. It's not just my inner athlete that suffers, it's also the hard worker in me that hates how debilitated I feel, how dependant on drugs, how far down the rabbit hole I have fallen.

Fifth Element has just begun, and they are building the 'perfect' being. I felt that way once.

Saturday, June 13, 2015

Sugar Detox Redoux - Day 24/28

Waking late at seven I kicked the light covers off and lay there enjoying the cool breeze coming through the window. Maybe it really will start cooling off! As I lay there I thought about cleaning out the fridge and juicing for the weekend; shampooing the living room carpet; making an appointment to have Kaylee's teeth cleaned (dog she stinks); mowing down the foxtails out back; and finally digging around the roses to make basins and giving them a good drink. Damn this drought. Usually I splurge on flowers each spring with birthday money, but not this year. I didn't want to even think about saving water to keep them alive. It's hard enough to keep the trees alive.

The morning started with...and I have NEVER done this before...adding sweetened condensed milk to my coffee. Out of milk, no coconut cream, and definitely not in the mood for black coffee I was going to skip the whole thing. But then A asked for tea, and she doesn't drink tea without milk. Her darling little pouty face at first pissed me off, the spoiled little shit, but then apparently she inspired my brain. Standing in the kitchen and wondering if I should get dressed and go get some cream I remembered digging through the cupboards for pasta and coming across a lonely little ignored can of the stuff. I have never used it for anything but making lemon bars and that was years and years ago. I am sure R will figure out something from Pinterest to use the rest of the can for making dessert. See, already planning more evil deeds. Maybe fudge, she has organic cocoa in there.....

So already too many plans and a flagging sense of enthusiasm. That's ok, there will be something wonderful in this day, in fact there already has been. The cool breeze, the snuggles with Kaylee and A each special in their own right, and my delicious coffee. Maybe one more cuppa decaf will get me going.
It ended up being a super lazy day. I did get one load of A's laundry done and mowed the back yard in an attempt to reduce the foxtail population that has cropped up instead of grass in our drought conditions. Every night  after getting into my pj's I put Kaylee on her back in front of me on the bed and thoroughly examine her feet, ears and (their favorite nesting place) her armpits. There is always one or two, and I hope daily that none find their way into her long doxie nose.

As always I hope tomorrow will be better.

Friday, June 12, 2015

Sugar Detox Redoux - Day 23/28

I was hoping to finish out this second set of four weeks strong. Instead I am floundering as usual, my blue moods spiked through with shards of optimism that keep me afloat. This was just another ordinary day at work, but one of the girls was going to her favorite deli at lunch and we all ordered sandwiches. Mine was their veggie on a sourdough roll (the best) full of sprouts, cucumbers, black olives, pickles, lettuce & tomato and some mayo. So delicious and satisfying, which did nothing to dispel the lassitude that quickly followed. If we had a nap room at work I would have been in trouble.

Leaving work the hot air hit me, and I knew I would be driving East into another twenty degrees or so. Arriving home I headed for shorts and a lie down in my cool cool bedroom. I hate to think what the PG&E bill will look like this month, but it is what it is.

R went out later and picked up Baja Fresh for all of us; my dinner was a nice green salad with black beans, avocado, sour cream and pico de gallo - it was indeed fresh and I gobbled it down, and yes, even the fried tortilla it nestled in, the best bits on the salsa soaked bottom. Yum.

It had been another early start and an accidentally long day, being absorbed in a project and working an hour too long. It's okay, I'll go in late next Weds so I can go to A's Kindergarten Graduation.

I did have one small madeline cookie when I arrived at work in the morning, but that was the only added sugar for the day. It wasn't even dipped in chocolate as we so often see them; just a plain buttery light delight.

One more hot day and then it is supposed to dip down into the 80's for the week; I hope that holds, so often our weather changes at the drop of a dime. One hundred one day and raining for most of the next. California? I call us a state with an identity crises as we are no longer the blissful sunny california we once were. Spring used to be a beautiful dependable 70 - 80; now there's no telling. I remember laying out in the sun in March soaking up the sun and bracing for the cool breezes that were bound to come whipping along my skin to raise goosebumps. Not this year, not last, did this happen. I did get out one day this year; tired after yard work I collapsed on the chaise and rested in the sun until the flies discovered me. I live for those rare days when my mental health meets agreeable weather.

Tonight we watched the latest episode of Fake Out and I finished colouring in the turtle on our current dragon page of the colouring book. If my back would allow it I would disappear into that book for hours, reveling in the calm of the shapes and the hypnotic effects of laying down colour.

I taped Vampire Academy earlier, time to go see if it's fun, exciting, campy or just sad. TGIF.

Thursday, June 11, 2015

Wednesday, June 10, 2015

Sugar Detox Redoux - Day 21/28

The day passed as they all must, from sun up to sun down, and I am still here at the end of it.  It was a fine beginning of rain pattering outside my window, and fresh air breezing through the house after being shut up the whole of the day before in 100 degree weather.  Early to work and early home has left me even more tired than usual, and there is not much to write.

What there is to put down is all about sugar and I guess I should figure out how much there actually was. Hang on, off to google. Well, not as bad as I figured considering all I could taste was the sweetness of the vegetarian baked beans. I would estimate a cup for my serving and that makes it 24g of sugar. But either my taste buds have shifted so I am more aware of the added sugar or it's just my bad memory - I don't remember them being so damn sweet. It felt more like dessert than dinner. (I did have corn on the cob, and zucchini sauteed with red onions too - all very dinnerish.)

But that was it for the added sugar. A week left in this second month of trying to go without added sugar. It is getting easier to push aside random thoughts of donuts and 2pt cones from the drive through, and I feel I am making progress however slow.

Yaaaaawwwwwwwwwwwwwn. Night.

Tuesday, June 9, 2015

Sugar Detox Redoux - Day 20/28

Eating isn't just about being depressed and needing comfort food, or eating our stress, it's also about celebrating with food. Any excuse, any time seems to be the norm for this foody and I know I'm not alone. Having had to shampoo my hair this morning and not wanting to aggravate my back I opted for the easy and pain free choice of driving through for breakfast this morning. After all, I had been 'good' the whole day before! I'm not sure what the correct expression is for this moment, both "Honestly" and "For Heaven's Sake" spring to mind along with "WTF" and "OMG".  I seriously could have just grabbed a banana for the drive to work. Spineless little shit.

But I did just chomp down a big crunchy salad with homemade dressing so I am forgiven for my morning trespasses. Speaking of chomping, I do eat more consciously and am careful to set down my fork between mouthfuls and chew chew chew until I have indeed macerated my choice bits. There is more than one important change there that has evolved over time; ha ha one of them being time and eating slower, and the other preparing the food for a more optimal digestive experience.

Let's see, what else have I been doing better? The glass of water I drink every morning now with my Thyroid pill starts the day with hydration; I've written much on how important I think this is so in a way it's good I am forced to practice something I think beneficial.

I eat lunch outside whenever I can so I am soaking up my vitamin D for the day.

Okay, I can't think of much else, other than forever stretching my toes and feet, stopping at my computer and moving often instead of letting myself be frozen during a project, and breaking up my work day by strolling up and down the hall with items to handle instead of waiting and doing them all at once. So some progress. I just need to keep doing the work and everything will come around.

The optimist has spoken!
Fruit only Jam is still a processed food, and I need to count it as sugar as much as I would love to think of it as a smashed up piece of fruit. So the PB&J I indulged in about 9pm was not a good idea per the boulder that is sitting in my stomach an hour later. Especially since the It's It connection dropped off frozen treats earlier and I had once again indulged. How does one say no to ice cream? No really, I'd like to know. I will go sleep on it.

Monday, June 8, 2015

Sugar Detox Redoux - Day 19/28

Knowing I will rebound after being 'down' doesn't usually help actually get through the sad times, and once I do bounce back it usually hits like a surprise out of the blue. So weird. But here I am typing away at lunchtime to brag about the green smoothie I made for breakfast and the fresh chopped salad I just threw together in the kitchen here at work. Nothing seems impossible today - right on!

I feel rather like a peach dumpling in my summer clothes, and yet I received a compliment on looking summery this morning. Our mini heat wave is not going away soon, and it will be over 100 when I arrive home today, but I made enough smoothie for two servings and the 2nd one is in the fridge waiting for me. Looking forward to that should keep me on the straight and narrow driving home, then later there is left over mac n cheese. It's really good, but with the added veggies it's not the constant temptation that 'straight' mac n cheese is. Win win; a single serving is satisfying and I get my veggies.

A couple of girls at the office are getting ready for a 15 day European vacation; oh to be young and independent and courageous. Not that I haven't been those things in my life - it just never occurred to me to travel, and I think I am satisfied living vicariously through book and all the wonderful tv programs that take me around the world from the convenience of my home. Not to say that I wouldn't jump at the chance to see PEI, or Scotland, or Italy. Maybe someday, but I will not be devastated if it doesn't happen; I am a confirmed homebody at the moment.
Crazy pool hair tells it all. I picked up A and S after work and took them for a romp at the pool where they joined 15 other kidlets of all ages in the task of cooling off. Lots of yelling and jumping and splashing filled the next two hours as they worked off the heat and built up appetites. Me too. It felt good to be in the water and even better to get home afterwards to enjoy the semi dark cooled environment after the bright flash of the pool. Another blessing, the air conditioner is working and I'll be able to pay the bill.

Left over mac n cheese for a quick hearty meal, and I'm ready to take it easy for a bit; this June heat wave is kicking my butt. Maybe I just needed a couple of days to adapt. Who knows. But at least I am feeling sane again. OMG - dinner is bottoming out and I am gone.

Another no sugar, no meat day. Go me.

Sunday, June 7, 2015

Sugar Detox Redoux - Day 18/28

Sunday cometh.

Having just finished another helping of left over confetti mac n cheese I thought I should follow up on how it came out. Delicious!

Here is a recap of the veggies that went into the dish because I had to look it up to figure out what was giving the little bites of crunch. Jicama!

Healthy 8 is a colorful blend of red and green cabbages, carrots, broccoli, jicama,
 bell peppers, radishes and celery. The veggies are chopped into smallish pieces that make them easy to eat, quick to cook and beautiful to envision. Add them into soups or stews,
 simmer in pasta sauces, make these vibrant, vivacious veggies the star of a spectacular
 stir fry, or even include them in fresh-pressed juice concoctions. 

This was so good, but of course I was analyzing why I was eating it as my portion spun around in the microwave transforming from a block of leftovers into a hot and creamy dish of delight. (So maybe going a little overboard with the prose but it is awesome. I think it's the cheese I used this time, half jack and half a cheddar, gruyere blend.) And I immediately knew why I was filled with the urge to eat; tired and bored. Plain and simple. No hunger involved. Big Sigh.

I had such high hopes for the new thyroid meds and the sugar detox, and I have to admit that for a couple of weeks I thought I could really feel a difference. But this weekend my energy is just gone, kaput, vanished. I want to mow the back yard, vacuum the house, go on a bike ride. Instead I am in front of the food network eating leftovers. (Speaking of TFN there is probably going to be a sweet potato salad happening around here soon. Orange zest and chives - i'm in!)

I need to back off on the typing, coloring, dishes, and SALT. My limbs are not happy this morning so I added extra ground pepper to my mac n cheese to avoid the sodium blast. I also need to STOP EATING SO MUCH and fricken lose some pounds so I feel better. Arghh.

Deep breath, time to go calm down, take stock of the fridge, and plan a healthy week. OR NOT!

I feel like I am back in my year of disability when the doctors told me to rest my back, to do nothing, and let the inflammation subside. I still have that problem, nothing they suggested worked, and today I sat in front of the tv doing nothing and once again letting my hands and therefore my back rest. I did color a few tiles of dragon, and played one game of solitaire, but other than updating my blog that was it. I didn't venture forth from the house with the exception of one quick trip in the heat to the recycling bin.

I am exhausted from doing nothing. Has it been a waste of a weekend? IMHO, yes. And now the pinching has just begun and I'm off the keyboard.

Saturday, June 6, 2015

Sugar Detox Redoux - Day 17/28

Saturday slipped by with chores and naps, an oil change for my little car, some coloring and a finally a movie once I was tucked safely into bed. A fog has once again descended, and it does worry me some. I hate to be in that place where I consider it a blessing just to be walking and breathing through the day; is that life? Really? Technically, yes, I suppose it is. But it is not how I imagine it should be at all.

No added sugar, but I snacked my way through the day; banana with PB, a bowl of confetti mac n cheese, the last of the asian salad with added sunflower seeds, and finally finishing up with delicious veggie fajitas from a local taqueria courtesy of R. So too much salt and fat, I should probably weigh myself soon but the snugness of my clothes has already told the story and I dread stepping on the scale.

Such gloom, such sadness about it all, and for what? I have so much to be grateful for as I constantly remind myself. And my hand is tingling with the precursor heat of numbness that is lurking and ready to strike. No more typing or coloring or anything today. Time to rest.

Friday, June 5, 2015

Sugar Detox Redoux - Day 16/28

Confetti Mac n Cheese
One pot, maybe six servings?

1 tub of chopped veggies from TJ's
1 medium yellow onion, diced
2T of red palm oil
16oz brown rice and quinoa spiral noodles
1T butter
2C milk
1T magic mushroom mix
2C cubed cheese (the more you love cheese the smaller the cubes, the healthier you intend the dish to be the larger the cubes - mine were cut in about 1/2" squares, a generous serving of cheese.)

Saute onion in palm oil until soft in a large ceramic covered roasting pan, stir in chopped veggie mix and stir well with magic mushroom mix; cover and cook on med low until veggies are not quite done; 5-10 minutes depending on your pan and the heat so keep an eye on them.

Cook noodles per pkg directions until al dente, about six minutes.

Preheat oven to 350°

Stir butter into veggies, add flour and keep stirring until all is blended and flour is cooked (5 minutes?)  Add milk and stir gently but thoroughly. Add cheese and cooked, drained noodles and lightly toss together with as much of the pasta water as is needed to do the stirring.

You now have a pan of brown mush laced through with bits of green, red and purple from the veggies; hence confetti mac n cheese. Sprinkle with parmesan shavings and put in the oven for half an hour or bubbling or until done to your likeness.

I don't expect anyone else here to love this, and in fact it is an experiment so I don't even know how it will turn out. If it tastes as good as it looks awful it will be wonderful.

No sugar at work today, all the pastry boxes are gone. I had a mandarin orange and a banana on the way home thinking about dinner and then stopped at TJ's to get the fixings for the recipe above. There is also leftover salad from the stash at work that I brought home, it's being Friday and all that entails when leaving work for the weekend.

One last item from shopping, a flat of a dozen peaches that will be ripe in about five days if I am gauging them correctly. I know the girls will help me gobble them all down once they are ripe, and there may be a cobbler in our future.  Time for the wicked to take a breather!

Thursday, June 4, 2015

Sugar Detox Redoux - Day 15/28

My weekdays are a repeating pattern, and like many other good souls I stay in my flight patter of commute, work, commute, arrive home tired but needing to at least fix something to eat, pick up a little, and finally try to have a little me time. Often I listen to a story while playing solitaire, but lately it's all been about colouring.

A is not bringing homework from school, and I am not pushing her reading right now; she has had an amazing school year and has advanced her reading skills much faster than I could have hoped. So we are taking a little break before the Summer reading program begins, and instead we colour or write and make things up and watch Fake Out and just goof off in general. It's all exhausting, but also a blessing and I wouldn't miss any of it.

The evening flew by too, and after some more comings and goings for food and meetings it is finally time to retire and I am sooooo looking forward to that moment of relaxation when one's body hit's the mattress and releases all of the strain of the day.

Wednesday, June 3, 2015

Sugar Detox Redoux - Day 14/28

Half way through my twenty eight days of saying no to sugar and I had an It's It for dessert. Go figure, one of M's friends dropped some off - family business no less - and I had no desire to refuse my share of the bounty.

The rest of the day was fairly typical with the exception of another brilliant thought. What if my Thyroid meds are improving  my blood pressure and affecting my beta blockers in such a way that I am being more forthcoming about my thoughts. A severe lack of editing has been apparent these past couple of days as I say what I think without benefit of a sanity check first.

I am often in 'self check' mode trying to figure out what is right or wrong in any given moment. I think I will give this another couple of days to figure it out. The timing is right - it's been almost a month since the new script showed up and something should be going on inside about now. I'll check the dates in the morning when I am not so ready to fall into bed and shoot a note to the Dr.

In the meantime, it's bed for me. Oblivion here I come.

Tuesday, June 2, 2015

Sugar Detox Redoux - Day 13/28

I don't know if I would call this an epiphany, but I realized today that my recent bout of anger at the least perceived slight may be an emotional reaction that is part and parcel of the sugar detox. This insight came after repeatedly denying myself the pleasures that the kitchen at work had to offer today. Two big (and I mean bigger than normal) pink pastry boxes filled with an assortment of small tarts, donuts and muffins, three smaller brown pastry boxes filled with scones (some of them glazed) and bottles of orange juice. I did fix myself a cup of fruit from the plate that was also in the array of goodies and it was wonderful; fresh green grapes, pineapple and strawberries. And I did go to Costco at lunch (no pizza or polish dog thank you very much) to pick up a bag of raw nuts (mixed, unsalted) plus a carton of raspberries for A and us to share and a bagged salad mix to keep at work for the rest of the week. Oh, and a hot dog for C and I still didn't order one for myself.

I fought for this victory, through the day and then again off and on during the drive home. Finally stopping at the store for tortillas, jack cheese, canned refried beans and bananas. I ate a banana on the way home to satisfy the hunger and urge to eat, and now I have time to cook up some veggies to go in my burrito for dinner. I think I just needed the tortilla to have something 'bad' since I had said no to so many things over the course of the day. And I know the rest of the Fam will help eat them up so I don't overindulge - they are a processed food after all. As are the canned beans, but I want the creamy fatty tradition beans, not my healthy beans from the freezer that are full of greens. It could be worse, I could be chomping away at a loaf of sourdough spread with butter. But I am not, nor will I be in the near and foreseeable future.

My brain is in a good place today caring about what I put in my body, wheeling and dealing to come up with alternatives in order to keep from making really bad choices. It's nice, I wish I felt this way more often - must be the extra salads and the seeds I am remembering to add daily. Nutrition does matter! Please let this last, please let this last, please let this last; my prayer going up in sparks to the universe.
Foiled again. The last few bites of leftover cheesecake and strawberry bundt cake were shared by us girls. Now the house is clean again - except for the strawberry ice cream, but frozen fruit does nothing for me and it is safe in it's cardboard container tucked away from the light of the world and my notice.

More drawing, no reading, lots of cuddling with A, and the day is finally winding down. I have chamomile tea steeping at my bedside, Kaylee waiting patiently at the foot of my bed, for a change. Normally I have to move her from being curled up exactly in the middle. The rascal. Not tonight though - maybe she is enjoying the cool air coming in the window after the heat of the day.

I'll count this a good day, most of the battles won and all that, and I'm ready to get up and do it again tomorrow.  Let's hope that feeling lasts 'till morning.

Monday, June 1, 2015

Sugar Detox Redoux - Day 12/28

Almost half way through my latest sugar detox and I feel like I am starting over at day one again. Just like everything else I am stuck in a do-over rut. Dishes, laundry, chores, eating, not eating, and now not eating sugar. The day went fine, no big temptations, a big chopped salad at lunch with my fresh lovely new dressing, and then my stop at TJ's resulted in a margherita pizza that is currently in the freezer waiting for the day to cool off so I can fire up the oven.

Short vent: My boss thinks I am an idiot, of course he feels the same way about the rest of the world so I shouldn't let myself get so mad. Arghhhhhhhh. Just let me do my F'ing job already. Obviously another nice day at work.

Time to open up and preheat the oven because Pizza fixes everything except your pant size, right? Or breathing, where is my inhaler - the wind is stirring everything up and my lungs are rebelling. Because I needed one more thing on my plate. Am I done? Anything else I want to get off my chest?

Early to bed with some extra Immune to fight off whatever allergen it is that was bothering me on and off all day. Tomorrow will be better, it's all in the mind, remember your psycho cybernetics sweetie and do some visualizing for god's sake.