Saturday, October 31, 2009

DAY 83 Caturday & The Power To Choose

Hello Journal,

For anyone not a cat lover...quick, hide your eyes!

Missy at Fearless Missy  asked if I had me if I had kitties, so I wanted to show off my furbabies. :-)

They are Dusty and Butterfly, both rescued kitties. Dusty is now 15 years old, and Butterfly is 5. If Dusty were not so set in her ways, I would definitely have kittens running around, too. But she is Queen, and getting on, so I won't put her through that stress.

Here are a couple of pics of them, if you can stand me bragging on my "kids" (click on any to enlarge).

Dusty has one gold eye and one green eye.

Dusty and Butterfly actually DO tie in with my weight loss. They are interconnected to my dreams and passions. A few years ago I, along with other local artists, helped to raise money for our local cat rescue shelter. We painted 3 foot high cat-shaped statues which were then sold at auction, with all the money going to the shelter.

I was so surprised and honored that my first one sold for the highest bid of $1100! And the following year my next one sold for $1000! I have a hard time explaining how much that means to know that people paid hard-earned money for something I painted. They LIKED it! Enough to pay money for have no idea how validating that is to an artist. 

I was able to go to the small Artists Reception in a wheelchair, where I knew some of the people. They were so nice, and affirming. But the auction was held in an old historic two-story elevator. Plus I was feeling self-conscious about my weight then (in 2005 and 2006) and did not want their judgements of ME, the person, to interfere with their perceptions of ME, the artist. I also worried that their judgement of me might affect the auction. I know... self-absorbed and insecure... sigh... but that's the way it was. So I stayed home, and missed these special events.

Instead of posting pics of the cat statues, they can be seen by visiting my Yessy Gallery here (and no, I'm not selling anything):

So when I talk about dreams, goals, passions... this is the kind of thing I'm talking about, and want to participate in...not sitting at home ashamed of how I look. I want to be able meet people at art galleries and receptions. Mary at Chronicles of Meps' Reconstruction  wrote about that...reading her stories (such as here)  and not having to be hindered by self-consciousness due to weight. I SO understood when she wrote that!

I know in this world we just can't help it...we SEE people, and make instant judgements about them by their looks, speech, manner, dress, and attitudes. I guess it is a normal thing to do...I find MYSELF doing it sometimes, as much as I detest it! I suppose that is why I like that Bible verse which talks about God seeing the HEART, not the outward appearance. Considering I have been a person that has been judged harshly all my life due to my size, you can see why I reeeeaaallly like that verse..LOL!

A career in any of the arts is hard enough, filled with people's subjective opinions and judgements, without adding to the mix an appearance that instantly gives them one more reason to have a negative reaction. For that matter, LIFE is hard enough without all that extra junk!

But the good news to me is...this is one area that I CAN change, my size. I have the power to choose, to get healthier and stronger, and get this one out of the way. That's good news. :-)

From Dr Phil's book: "Be very careful not to let others deter you from your task of managing your weight... be sensitive, but let them be responsible for their own feelings."

My verse for today: "Whatever is true, whatever is noble, whatever is right, whatever is pure, whatever is lovely, whatever  is admirable--if anything is excellent or praiseworthy--think about such things."

My quote for today: "Whatever happened on the previous attempt doesn't matter anymore. What matters is what you do now"--Ralph Marston

Enjoy the Journey,


Friday, October 30, 2009

DAY 82 The HOW & The WHY

Hello Journal,

Today I want to focus on the WHY, not just the HOW.

The WHY is why I want to lose the weight. What is the reigning passion of my life, my goals, my REASON for being. What is the thing that lights up my life, brings a smile to my face, causes my heart to beat a little faster, gives me a sense of fulfillment and destiny...the reason I was put on this earth, the thing I have to offer that could make a difference, somehow, sometime, to someone. 

WHY am I  losing the weight?

WHY keep trying?
WHY do I want to change?
WHY did I start this journey?

That's the WHY.

The HOW is simply the method, the plan, the skills acquired along the way. The nutrition plan, the exercise plan, the mental/emotional skills to handle the stresses of life without resorting to food...managing my emotions, not just managing food. 

That's the HOW.

The WHY is my source of energy, my source of motivation when things get rough.

The WHY encourages me to never ever quit.

The WHY gives me hope, and infuses the passion back into my life that overeating sucked out of it.

The WHY is all important!! Without it, I believe this weight loss would end up like all my many past attempts...a temporary reprieve.

The WHY will be totally unique for every single two on earth will be the same. What a fun thought!

Having the WHY dominate my thinking will supercharge me and keep me making healthy choices, not for their own sake, but for my REAL reason, the WHY I am doing this all for...the real passions of my heart... the WHY. And when a stumble does happen, the WHY will help me get back up, dust off, and get going again.

I have been trying to incorporate my WHY into my everyday life even now, not waiting to "live" until I reach my goal weight. But I must say, it's been in very teensy doses.

After reading what Mary wrote this last Wednesdy on her blog post titled "Make Your Life Worthwhile" (edited to add: Mary has a new blog now HERE) I have been thinking of how I can do more of my WHY now, while still on my journey. Some of it is not physically possible yet, but some IS. That is going to be my focus for this next leg of my journey. I think it will be fun for me to launch it officially, The WHY Leg of My Journey, when I hit my 100 lb mark of lost weight....and that will be soon!

I have already blogged about my WHY in depth (here) and (here), so won't repeat it. But anyone can take the questions asked in these blog entries, and insert their personal feelings to help them discover their own passions and purpose. That is one reason I wrote down a lot of the METHODS, the HOW, that I used to arrive at where I am now, so anyone who so chooses can take what they relate to and use it for themselves. 

Freely I have received, so freely I give. :-) 

Progress, not Perfection, will take us all the way.

From Dr Phil's book: "Make time for exercise, then protect that time."

My verse for today: "Be joyful always; pray continually; give thanks in all circumstances..."

My quote for today: "Having more fun than the Oscar Mayer Weinermobile..."

Enjoy the Journey,


Thursday, October 29, 2009

DAY 81 Just Do It & An Award

Hi Journal,

I woke up sick today...sore throat, earache. After making 2 meals for MyGuy to take to work, I just couldn't get warm, so I gave in and crawled back into bed.  Bless the person who invented electric blankets!!!!

I woke up later feeling warmer and a little better, and as I lay there, I thought about all the chirpy motivational stuff I write. Oh goodie...I get to put it into practice. I get to look for the "Blessin' or the Lesson". Well, after I got over grumping about it, and remembered all my bloggin' friends who are struggling through illnesses and still Doing It, I decided that today would be no different than any other day, foodwise. I won't be exercising, or pushing my new schedule, but otherwise, it is just another day along the Journey. 

THEN, when I got to the computer I found a message from Black Kitteh and Orange Kitteh, at A Tail of Two Kittehs On WW. They gave me an Award! How did those kittehs know I was sick today?! Purrfect timing...see my pretty award? It made me purr:

I am not sure of the Rules to this one, but since it is an Inspirational Award, I IMMEDIATELY know who I would like to pass it on to, and why:

I love reading her blog! She has reached her weight loss goal, and is  LIVING her life. She is busy, but still takes the time to share with those of us still ON the weight loss journey, and is sooo inspiring. I frequently save her articles to re-read and think about. Yesterday's was called "Make Your Life Worthwhile" (here). All I can say is wow! It made me cry, it made me think, it inspired me, it excited me, it CHANGED me. So for all those reasons, I would be honored if Mary would accept the Inspirational Blog Award.

From Dr Phil's book:  "Just do it...again and again and again."

My verse for today: "...the testing of your faith develops perseverance."

My quote for today: "Choose well.", not Homer Simpson! ;-)

Enjoy the Journey,


Wednesday, October 28, 2009

DAY 80 Great Ideas & Thank You!

Good Afternoon Journal,

All I can say is WOW! I asked for suggestions yesterday, and in response I got so many great ideas and points of view. It really did help to open up my thinking to new ways of looking at the situation.

I think I will summarize some of the good ideas sort of help me grab hold of them and formulate a working plan.

From Missy/Fearless Missy: I realized how much I had been missing our Date Nights. I know this was not really on topic, but it struck a chord, and made me realize how sad I was that we didn't do this anymore. Now I have one more reason to keep going to my goals...thank you so much for that, Missy. Plus, she always makes sure Hampy is well fed...LOL!!

From Chris/cmoursler/A Deliberate LifeI was reminded how much God was involved in the restoration of my life AND my will be even better than ever...this touched me deeply.

From Ruby/ScarletSimple/A 252 Journey To Being Free: She inspired me to get that exercise done on the days he is NOT here, making it a priority...I have gotten too lax. And to take charge of my schedule, do better in the time management department.

From Karen/Musings, Memos and Melancholy: I am so glad my sister doesn't live too far away...she means so much to me. And, she reminded me of the importance of planning AHEAD, and my recurring problem of getting to bed on time!

From Nancy/Easy To Be Thin: She and I are on the same type of nutrition plans, and have the same challenge with hubbys who are resistant to is nice to know she understands! (and she has THE most fabulous recipe link at her site to a rich, ooey gooey sugar-free chocolate cookie, "Mad's 
Flourless Chocolate Walnut Cookies". Sorry, couldn't resist, they are currently my FAVORITE cookie! They are so rich, one cookie is all I want...really! Yeah, I know, side-tracked by food again, ha ha ha.

From Mary/antgirl/Chronicles of Meps' Reconstruction: I hit the jackpot here...the lightbulb went on and I saw my mistake. I was trying to make ONE kind of schedule fit for days that were DIFFERENT. What I need are two DIFFERENT types of schedules, to fit the differing needs. It is sooo simple, but I was just being too rigid in my thinking. 

I had to laugh at the thought of a "free floating schedule" sounded oxymoronic to me! LOL! But the more I thought about it, the more I could see it working.  I am a very visual thinker, and even connected an image to each kind of schedule: Firm Day and Flexible Day...or maybe I will call them Tight Day and Loose Day...not sure yet.

But for the Firm Day, my visual will be a tight little bunch of Johnny Jump Ups.

And for the Flexible Day, my visual will be a big, tall, fun and casual Giant Sunflower.

 Thank you, everyone! I am still feeling surprised and blessed to have met so many truly nice people on the intertubes!

From Dr Phil's book: "Food behavior and exercise behavior are highly feel better so you want to eat better."

My verse for today: "When your words came, I ate them; they were my joy and my hearts delight..."

My quote for today: "I am definitely going to take a course on time management...just as soon as I can work it into my schedule."--Louis E Boone

Enjoy the Journey,


Tuesday, October 27, 2009

DAY 79 In My Jammies & Lookin' for Ideas

Good Afternoon Journal,

MyGuy is off work's 4:30pm and I am still in my jammies... Good griefus! He is off to do some shopping, so I finally get computer time. :-)

Today, as I bounced from task to task, I realized--AGAIN-- that I need a workable plan that I can consistently follow on his days off.

I do BETTER following a routine...sleep is better, food is better, exercise is better...chores get done...EVERYTHING goes better. And on his work days, when I am free to follow my routine, *I* do better. I feel better ABOUT myself, feel more productive and happy...feel like I am progressing towards my goals. I am one of those weird ones that loves crossing stuff off from my to-do list, and awarding myself little stars or smilie faces!
But, about 2 days per week, hubby is off, and here, and out the window goes my schedule. He has had rotating days off for the last 27 years...and sometimes, with last minute notice, it changes. Out the window goes my plans, routines.
One problem is that he is dyslexic...hard to read, hard to write. He CAN, but he prefers not to. He jokingly refers to me as his "sexetary". Kinda cute, when I am in a good mood.
As an aside, I love the book of Proverbs, in the Bible. And one verse I chose years ago to live by is this:
"Her husband has full confidence in her, and lacks nothing of value. She brings him good, not harm, all the days of her life."
Because it's a lot of work for him to read, he doesn't read my blog. I could say anything I wanted about him and he would never know. Mwahahahaha....
 But, seriously, I am loyal to him, and even when I get ticked at him, I would never trash him for the world to read. "Ticked" comes and goes...Love is forever.  I have seen blogs where the wife verbally drags the man she has pledged to love through the mud, and I almost cried for them. 
It made me even more determined to be the kind of person his heart could trust. He is not perfect...but he really is a good guy!
Back to the topic! When MyGuy is here, I am sort of the "go to" person in the house. Anything needing reading, writing, phone calls, bills, letters, emails, where is this, where is that, what's for lunch? what's for dinner? Sounds like a momma! I don't mean it to sound that's just a special situation, and it's sort of worked for a long time.
Until *I* went and decided to change! Now, I am trying to learn CONSISTENCY. And part of that means not getting all behind 2 days a week by letting my routines go out the window, then playing catch up the next two days. By the time I am feeling in the groove...he is off work again! Ack!
So, I am humbling myself to ask for ideas, opinions, suggestions. This is embarrassing, something that is probably so simple for most people, yet I struggle with it so much. I love order, thrive on routine. And in the end, by following a routine, it gives me even more free time, and I get to work on my art, which is deeply meaningful and important to me...something I feel I was meant to do.
I have tried to be honest, and see if I am making excuses. If that is the case, then it's a blind spot...I don't see it. I have tried to talk with Jim...and he is totally NOT a routine person...he cares, but he doesn't get it. HE thrives on flexibility, spontaneity, the "last minute rush". And he is great at his job because of that! Go figure.
Do I need an attitude adjustment? A check-up from the neck-up? A different perspective? A better plan? The same plan, but more consistently executed? Stop making excuses? Am I just afraid to rock the boat, that MyGuy would get ticked at ME? 
I will find a solution...I am open to correction, or suggestions, or ideas. Surely someone has experienced a similar situation, and come up with a great idea to make it work.

From Dr Phil's book: "Use it or lose it."

My verse for today: "Happy are the people whose God is the Lord."

My quote for today: "To fly, we have to have resistance."--Maya Lin

Enjoy the Journey,


Monday, October 26, 2009

DAY 78 Birthday Adventure Goals & Weigh Day

Hiya Journal!

Here it is Monday afternoon, and I am still basking in the glow from Friday night! As I chattered on and on, talking on the phone to my sister Karen (her blog is Musings, Memos and Melancholy), I realized that what I had been thinking Friday night was still with me...the thought that "this is how NORMAL people live!" (ummm...just what IS normal, anyway!?)

I get out so rarely to these kinds of events, that it was a big deal to me. So when my sister pointed out that there would be many more in the future, it was a novel and exciting thought! And I also realized that I WANTED more of them. It seemed to have awakened a hunger in me for more...more of LIVING life, not just watching it or reading about it.

So, just for the fun of it, Karen and I are going to set a mini-goal for January. Both our birthdays are in January, and we want to find some fun place or event to go to, together, as a Birthday Adventure. We don't have any ideas yet...January in Southern Oregon can be quite chilly, wet and/or snowy! But we will do SOMETHING...and will have the photos to prove it...LOL!!

Oh, and today was my weekly weigh day: 365, for a loss of 3 pounds last week. Yippee, finally the numbers are moving again!

From Dr Phil's book: "A common denominator among people who successfully manage their weight and stay fit is that they exercise as a matter of habit."

My verse for today: "Now what I am commanding you today is not too difficult for you..."

My quote for today: "For many people, change is more threatening than challenging. They see it as the destroyer of what is familiar and comfortable rather than the creator of what is new and exciting." --Nido Qubein

Enjoy the Journey,


Sunday, October 25, 2009

DAY 77 Day of Rest & Favorite Photo

Hi Journal,

I am feeling laid back today, like this cheetah.  

Jim took this photo at Wildlife Safari in Winston, Oregon. Friendly guy!

(click pic to enlarge)

Enjoy the Journey,


Saturday, October 24, 2009

Progess Pics

This will be the official home of the Progress Pics... and someday, I will get to rename it to Before and After Photos!
I will just add more photos here in one place as I have them to share, with the link in the sidebar, so they will be easy to find. I don't know about other people, but one of the first things I look at are the Before and After photos! I find them sooo encouraging.

I've been on this journey a LONG time, finding what really works for me. If you've struggled and been up and down, please, NEVER GIVE UP, always always keep going. I did a lot of things wrong... but that one thing, I did right: I never gave up!

So, here is what I have thus far (click on them to enlarge...posting thumbnails will enable the page to load faster):

Note: had several dental surgeries starting mid 2014, so as soon as all that is straightened out, will get an updated photo.

May 2016 at 340

July 2016 at 328

Update: Diagnosed with cancer and other stuff in 2016; medications that messed with hormones; gained wt; lost wt; gained wt, etc. Hard times.  Highest late last year in 2017 was around 360. It's been a wild ride, all over the map. Writing this in March 2018;  currently at around 343. So... just keep going. Never give in, never surrender.

Above: Feb 2019 at 270

Jan 2020 at 245

Enjoy the Journey,


No No, In My Head It's Still Friday Night!

I know it's Saturday night...but in my mind it is still Friday night! :-D

I was having such a great time last night, and when 9 o'clock came and the dancing started, Jim was ready to go home to bed. He had to get up early to go to work the next day. But I didn't want it to end!!

As MyGuy walked around visiting with people after the awards were finished, I sat there people watching. I was basking in the "aliveness" of it all. The room was decorated so colorfully, there was great 60's music...and I was thinking, so this is how "normal" people live. I thought of how much of life I had missed out on due to being so overweight...but I was not sad. Because I had a Secret...

I was going to come back next year, and be smaller! Whenever I got self-conscious, I would remind myself of my "Secret". It made me smile, and it didn't matter what anyone else thought...I knew my Secret, and that I was doing something healthy for myself.  I just hope next year they play 60's music again! LOL!

Here are some pictures we took with Jim's fancy camera before leaving home, since I had no idea what I would end up with at the Banquet with my little cheapie camera. Groovy, baby!

(click on pics to enlarge)

Enjoy the Journey,

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