Wednesday, December 31, 2008

Goodbye 2008! It's been fun!

Today is the last day of the year. The markets are packed with people. The liquor stores are brimming with folks trying to figure out what champagne to buy for their big night out. The television is full of "best of" lists and countdowns. It's a big night!

I'm not a big New Year's Eve going out fan. I like to hang close to home and lay low! And that's the plan tonight. I'm going to pop into a friend's party and say hi to the gang and then be home before 2009 makes it's grand entrance.

The past week has been crazy busy and fun. The holiday hooplah began with my annual party on the 23rd. It was a packed and spirited house. Santa came to greet the kids - Thanks Michael! There was a great spread of food, wine, beer and great holiday moods! Here's a shot of Santa and group of the girls....

With party successful and behind me, the next focus was Christmas Eve. We didn't do a whole lot during the day. Sabrina and I hung out, played, etc. We went to 5 o'clock services at our church, Grace Bible Church, in the Heights. We were joined by friends and family. It was a great service in which the kids got to participate and the message, although decidedly Christmas, was a great one!

After church, Sabrina and I headed to the Coleman's house for our annual tamale, taco salad, chili meal! It was as fun as ever. One set of the Coleman's grandkids were there and Sabrina and the youngest, Thomas, are great pals. They, along with Zachery, had fun tracking Santa on GM's computer and playing outside.

Christmas Day was GREAT this year! Santa was good to everyone! We were joined early in the morning by my parents and Sabrina and I spent the ENTIRE day in our pajamas. It was fantastic. We opened gifts, had a great breakfast of egg and sausage catalog, homemade cinnamon buns and mimosas! We lounged around playing with toys, loading batteries and lightbulbs (the Easy Bake Oven) and just having a fun time. I made a pot of tortilla soup for the afternoon since we were delaying Christmas Dinner for one night. That evening we drove around looking at lights!

The day after Christmas, mom and I headed out early to do our annual "day after" shopping. We hit Target, the Hallmark store, Steinmart and Pier One and managed to load up on wrapping paper, gift tags, ornaments and few non-holiday extras! It did not disappoint!

That afternoon, my brother, Doug, his wife, Colleen, and my nephews, Collin and Andrew came to town. The next several days were filled with flying screaming monkeys, lots of Wii playing, great meals, great laughs, and tons of fun! Here's a shot of the grandkids...

So, that's the wrapup of my 2008....

I'll see you in 2009! It's gonna be MY year!

Tuesday, December 23, 2008

2 Days til Christmas!!!

I love Christmas. I love everything about Christmas, but the thing I look forward to the most each year is my annual Christmas party. It's a TON of work and always held tonight, the 23rd. I spent yesterday morning doing food prep and late last night started rearranging furniture. This morning will be cleaning the house and figuring out which foods are going on which platters and in which chaffing dishes.

I'm a bit nervous since this year there's over 70 people coming to the party and my house is a tiny cottage. The weather man tells me it will be warm enough to use the back deck, but whether or not it will be raining remains to be seen!

It's going to be a long day today, but it should be a fun day as well!

I hope you are enjoying your ramp up to Christmas and I'll check in tomorrow with how the party went!

Monday, December 22, 2008

3 Days 'til Christmas!

So today I begin the prep work for my annual 'Twas the Night Before the Night Before Christmas party! We have over 70 people coming this year to our little 1200 sq ft cottage, so I'm praying for good weather so we can use the back deck as well!!! I'm about to head to the grocery store to buy the food supplies. The 2 cases of wine and 4 cases of beer 3 cases of soft drinks and 2 cases of bottled water are already here and in place!

So, we went to Breakfast with Santa at the zoo the other day! What fun! They put out a pretty good breakfast buffet and Santa hangs out all morning. About an hour in they also bring in animals for the kids to see and touch up close. We finished by doing a quick once through of the zoo. The weeone had a blast with the whole thing!

As for my mission and goals with eating - they're going pretty well. I started out great guns with the water drinking but have slacked off a bit the past couple of days. BUT, I've been too busy to eat like crazy, so that's a plus! =) Also, I've added the Evernote app to my iphone and it's making writing down what I eat REALLY easy!

Merry Christmas Ya'll!

Saturday, December 20, 2008

Deck the Halls with Boughs of Holly...falalalalalalalala....

Well....the countdown calendar tells me that there are only 5 more days until Christmas!!! It's an exciting time of year for anyone, but especially when you have a weeone around!

Last night we went caroling with friends. The weeone had never been caroling before, was extremely excited and was plum tuckered when we were done! It was a blast. It was a mix of people we knew and people we didn't know, which is always kind of nice. I was surprised at the number of people who wouldn't open the door for us - even if we had started singing!!! I guess in this day and age people have every right to be a bit afraid. On the other hand, we had cars stop and request songs and house parties full of people come outside and we even got to sing for a one horse open sleigh full of people! It was a blast!

The weeone is now done with school and I'm done with work, so we're in full on vacation mode. It's amazing how busy the coming days will still be. Today is my Dad's 63rd birthday- Happy Birthday Daddy! We'll start the day in just a little while by having Breakfast with Santa at the Houston Zoo. I found out about this activity a couple of years ago and now it's our favorite way to see Santa! This afternoon will be spent visiting with family who are in town receiving treatment at MD Anderson. And dinner will be my Dad's choice!

Monday and Tuesday will be party prep days - although the weeone and I were invited to a Gingerbread decorating party on Monday afternoon that we're going to try to squeeze in! That should be fun.

On the food front - I walked away from a Cranberry Bliss Bar at Starbucks yesterday. That's a MAJOR accomplishment for me. The water is really helping my appetite so far. I think I'm even beginning to lose my Diet Dr. Pepper cravings! Amazing...

Tuesday, December 16, 2008

The Good News is...

...I'm feeling better! The bad news is that my foot is hurting again, so I'm back in the "boot" - the walking cast. It's only for a week and then I'll test it again, but it's a bit disappointing.

On the upside, I'm meeting my food journal and water goals thus far this week! I talked to Sarah today and she seemed thrilled with my progress to date. It's funny because since I'm writing down what I eat I feel guilty when I indulge. She tells me not to feel guilty. I'm not changing anything but water right now. Gotta love that! Chocolate truffles for breakfast, lunch and dinner!!! Just kidding!

Sunday, December 14, 2008

Nothing like being sick... keep your appetite in check! My tummy is mad at me and I'm not sure why! =)

I did eat a little bit today and made sure to write it down. I didn't do as well with the water consumption since I was trying to sip gingerale to keep my stomach settled, but I'll cut myself some slack for illness!

On the upside, the weeone returned from a weekend with her father and we spent the evening driving around looking at AWESOME Christmas lights and listening to Christmas music. Even as I type, she's getting ready for bedding singing "Oh the hark herald angels si-ing!" Hilarious!

Saturday, December 13, 2008

Sometimes it's about comfort...

Early this morning I was joined by my friends Ellen and Staci at my house so the three of us could play Santa in a way. Two weeks ago I had started making candied jalapenos in large quantities. Ellen ordered some adorable jars from Crate & Barrel a while back as well. So, with all the supplies ready to go, we began jarring our homemade Christmas treats!

In total we filled 96 jars with the fabulous spicy and sweet concoction! I tasted a couple of peppers on the way. They start off pretty sweet but come back with a bite only moments after being in your mouth. They're soooo good!

They'll be labeled and tagged with serving suggestions, including pouring over or mixing with a block of cream cheese and serving with a good cracker, adding a kick to a burger or sandwich, or jazzing up a potato salad. I like the idea of mixing the with cream cheese the best. It would seem more like a dip that way and, well, I love a good dip!

Don't they look festive??? There's still work to do - design a label and a tag, etc, but that's just some computer time and stickers. =)

We finished by 10:30am, but didn't want our fun to end, so we headed to Don Jose's Mexican Restaurant. It's a little family owned dive that Ellen and I have been eating at since we were kids. It's cheap, consistent and pretty good. As an added bonus, their margaritas are only $2.99 each! We had a great lunch and then everyone headed their separate ways to continue on our individual Saturdays.

Tonight? I'm headed to Lights in the Heights ( several blocks of houses with lights, crowds, live music, and fun). I'm going with Staci and her family and we should have a great time! I figure I'll get a bit of exercise tonight and if not, tomorrow morning I'll do the pilates dvd again.

I've written down everything I've eaten and I've had some a good start on my weekly goals. I'll keep you posted! Happy Weekend!

Friday, December 12, 2008

And another one bites the dust...

So, another month is gone and once again I'm full of good excuses! Shortly after my last post, 6 days in fact, I had emergency surgery. Something about an appendix and inflammation. =) Yes, I had an appendectomy. So that's one thing I can check off my to-do-in-life list! While they were in that tummy of mine they discovered I had a belly-button hernia from pregnancy and fixed that too! So, as you can imagine I was down and out for a couple of weeks...then came Thanksgiving...then my company's layoffs (which I thankfully survived). So, now here I am looking Christmas in the eyes.

What do you do when the the season of sweets and pastries and appetizers is upon you? Well, if you're me, you have a heart to heart with a close friend who happens to be a dietician. What happened? Well....I used to think I was fed up with my weight, but the past week has been enlightening for me. It's shown me how bad things have gotten. I'm officially uncomfortable in my own skin. I'm disgusted by a photograph of myself. I don't want to go on like this. I'm exhausted. And I mean exhausted all of the time. But who wouldn't be tired carrying around a good 70 extra pounds all the time?

Oh, I was telling you about my friend. Sarah, that's her name. She and I work together, but her training is in nutrition and she's a licensed dietician. She's struggled with eating issues in her life and she is passionate about helping people be healthy. She doesn't care what someone weighs, but she thinks health is key. I like that. Plus, I like her. She's my friend so that helps. =)

I've wanted to talk to Sarah for a while about my eating and the fact that food is my best friend, but I was scared. I've tried a lot of "diets", "routines", "plans", etc. Every time I've tried, I've failed. It's heartbreaking when you really start to think about it. But something (Are you there God? It's me, Terri!) made me talk to her today about how sick and tired I am of being sick and tired of being fat. And you know what? She wants to help me. It's the first time I've had a friend say "I want to help you." It's an amazing thing when you hear that. I wanted to cry.

Sarah and I talked for about an hour about goals. We talked about baby steps. She understands my fear of leaving food, my fear of failure, my fear of facing all the things I hide behind fat and french fries. She gets it. She also knows I'm going to fail a multitude of times before I succeed. There's freedom in that, you know. Each failure gets me one step closer to success, so those failures aren't all for naught.

So, we set 2 goals for me this week. The first is to start to drink more water. As it turns out, dehydration can rear it's head disquised as hunger! Who knew? Well, Sarah did. =) Also, water helps you feel fuller, so it all makes sense. So, I'm replacing at least 1/2 of my usual Diet Dr. Pepper with water and I'll slowly (not all this week) increase that water consumption until I'm drinking 1/2 my body weight in ounces of water! Seems like a lot right now, but I'm sure it won't be so much once I start. The second goal is to write down anything that goes in my mouth - food, beverage, hard candy, the works. And after I write it down I'm also going to write down what I was feeling when I ate it. That's sort of scary, but she says it will help. She's my friend. I'm just going to trust her on this one.

Oh yeah - we did talk a bit about exercise too. She suggested I get myself moving in some way at least 2-3 times per week. I still can't do anything with impact, so I've got some Winsor Pilates DVDs that I'm going to bust out. I did one about an hour ago and I survived, so we'll see if I can do it a few times a week.

Feel free to check in with and see how things are going....I'll do my best to update at least once per week as to how the new "make Terri healthy plan" is going. As always, wish me luck...and pray because I know I can't do it all alone!