Friday, October 30, 2009

Here I am!

Happy Friday everyone! I'm sorry I've been so absent in my posting.  Everyday I've been thinking, I need to catch up on my blog, but then the day gets busy and the opportunity is lost. 

Let's see...what's been going on? 

Work's been busy.  J had jury duty this week and had lunch w/ me a couple times downtown, so that was fun.  He also had an interview yesterday, so we're keeping our fingers crossed :)

Biggest Loser Update

A very emotional episode this week.  Everytime they show Abby's little girl, I cry.  I'm feeling less and less attached to Daniel and Shay.  In fact, I'll say it:  Daniel should have gone home this week.  Crazy Train didn't disappoint again this week...she's the go to for drama this season.  I can't wait til they get rid of her...

I am loving all of the time Jillian is putting in to get to the root of everyone's obesity.  It really gives me some good things to think about with my own story.


Have you been to Brasa? Of course you have, my little foodies! This summer they opened up a location on Grand Ave, which is practically right up the road from us.  It is quickly becoming one of my favorite go-to places for lunch or dinner.  I love the meat + sides served family style, and the food is always super tasty and just enough.   

Last week, some co-workers invited me to lunch with them at Trattoria Da Vinci.  Apparently, their pasta bar is very popular with the downtown St. Paul crowd, but after working down here for a year, I still hadn't tried it.  It's a pretty good value, for sure.  For $11 you get a HUGE (I'm not exaggerating here) bowl of pasta mixed with any kinds of veggies, meat, sauce you choose.  Seriously, it was enough for 3 good meals.  So, they've got the quantity, how about quality?  Eh, it was ok.  There was nothing bad about it, but it wasn't great either.  I actually felt really overwhelmed with all of the choices for ingredients you could add.  You also get bread, which the other people I was with raved about, but I thought was very average at best. 

Halloween Update

I LOVE Halloween, I must say.  Last night we went to a friend's house and carved pumpkins, which is pretty much an annual tradition.  I did a traditional Jack-o-Lantern and J, who always likes to do something different, carved "SAVE FERRIS" into his goes with our John Hughes theme for Saturday's party.

Yep, so most of the planning is done for Saturday.  We've got our costumes - I'll be Claire and J. will be Bender from Breakfast Club.  We're expecting about 20 people, which would be the biggest turnout yet for our party, so we're really excited about that.  We will be serving up all kinds of spooky and unhealthy fare, including bat wings, eyeballs, and a brain.  (I'll try to remember to post pics).


One thing I'm super excited about is for everyone to taste our homemade lemoncello.  We bottled it about 10 days ago and I've been having little sips almost everyday.  The flavor has definitely mellowed over time, so letting it sit was a good plan.

Weighty Stuff

Well, I really don't have much to report on my health goals or efforts, mainly because there haven't been any.  [Insert Excuse Here]  I've been eating crap, not exercising, and not feeling great....hmm...could there be a connection??? :-p

I'm going to make 3 goals/declarations right now.  1) I will drink all my H2O today and then some - I know part of my sluggishness is in my dehydration.  2) Tomorrow as I'm cleaning the house, decorating for the party, and prepping food, I will eat regular meals and healthy snacks.  3) On Sunday, hungover or not, I will get on the treadmill for 40 minutes - even if I just walk and do no running, I will be on the treadmill. 

Okay everyone, that's all for today.  I hope you have a really great Halloween.  :) :) :)

psst...I've already got 32 oz of water in...yay me :)

Sunday, October 25, 2009

Denial - it ain't just a river in Egypt....

This is a rare, Sunday post because I have some thoughts that have been turning around since last night. 

First, I have to say that last night we had an awesome time with some old co-workers of J's.  We had a great dinner at Brit's Pub in downtown Minneapolis, where they were celebrating St. Crispin's Day .  We all tried Crispin apple cider (FYI, Crispin is made right here in our fair city, folks) for the first time and I think all of us would give a hearty thumbs up - the honey crisp flavor in particular, was excellent. 

After dinner, we walked down to the real event of the evening - the first bout of the North Star Roller Girls season!!!  If you are in the mood for something totally crazy, cooky and fun, seriously, you've got to check out roller derby.  And do it quick, before Drew Barrymore makes it mainstream...

One more back story before I get to the point:  About 3 weeks ago, my boss had to be out of the office unexpectedly.  She told me that she had been recruited to "act" in a corporate video, and asked me if I would fill in for her in her absence.  (I work for a pretty big company & occasionally they do these videos that they show in various propeganda or big corporate meetings)  Of course, I don't want to leave my boss hanging, so I agreed, despite my aversion to being in front of cameras of any sort.  I HATE having my picture taken, but being on video is 1,000 times worse.  The one positive thing was that I was assured there would be no speaking parts.  It was me and four other people and we were supposed to act out a mock meeting where we all collaborated together.   How nice.  So, I get to the "shoot" and though a series of unfortunate events, end up sitting nearest the door.  The director shows up, and immediately picks me to do a little acting...I have to walk into the conference room like a big doofy moron who is late to the meeting because everyone else is already seated in the room (exactly how I would love to be portrayed to the whole company).  So, I do my little walk-in and then he also asks me to do another scene, where I'm standing behind two other women, bent halfway over, pointing at their laptop and then up at the projection screen.  I just know that this is the worst possible angle I could be shot at.  I have huge boobs and although I wasn't wearing a v-neck or anything close to that, I was imagining that on film, they looked as if they were about to smother the two other women.  Think 1940's sci-fi monster.  So, we finish the shoot, and I go back to my desk relieved that it is over. Then, I realize (with choking panic), this is going to be shown at this big department meeting (100+ people attending) in front of everyone...AND, I would have to see it.  Bad enough that it existed at all, but way worse if I would actually have to see it myself.  Fortunately, for me, I actually had a conflicting training to attend at the same time as the big meeting, so I have never actually seen the gruesome footage to date...

Ok, so my revelation is totally related, I promise.... 

Back to roller derby last night.  Near the end of the bout, one of our friends asked for a girl sitting near us to take our group's picture...dun, dun, dun....the dreaded picture.  Have I mentioned maybe once or twice that I HATE having my picture taken?  And like the video, what was particularly bad about this instance, was that he showed me the picture after he took it...ugh, I glanced and looked away as quickly as I could.  Remember, it's bad enough that someone else can see it, but it's way worse seeing it myself
All of a sudden, the thought popped into my head: 
"Looking away doesn't make you any less fat"

What kind of delusional, denial filled world do I live in that I think if I don't see the picture/video, I am helping myself in anyway?  Sure, maybe I'm sparing my own feelings for a moment, but I. am. still. fat.  And, unless I take actual, real, tangible ACTION, I will stay that way.  Fact.

Also, I might point out that even though I still can squeeze into the same size pants I wore 20 lbs ago, that doesn't mean that I don't look 20 lbs heavier. 

I feel sad.  This realization that I'm in denial makes me feel like the biggest dummy on the planet.  How could I be such a fool???  Why did I even let myself get to this point?

I also feel overwhelmed.  Armed with this knowledge, what will I do? Where will I even start?

Am I even capable of doing what I need to??

I'm going to say, with much hesitation and wavering in my littlest voice, "yes. i can do this"

Tuesday, October 20, 2009

One little thought

So, I should let you know, I actually started my earlier post late last week, and was sort of letting my thoughts about it steep for a bit before I posted it this afternoon. 

Now that I've read and re-read (and in parts, re-written), it's fresh in my mind again.  Anyway, I was trying to get back to work, when my mind wandered for about the millionth time today and I thought maybe I should head over to the vending machine for a pick-me-up.  The inner dialog went something like this:

"Maybe a twix would help me concentrate"
"Should you really be spending your money on that?"
"Well, no, but I have some change"
"What about your last blog post? I thought you were all committed again"
"i am, but i want a snack" (little, weak voice)
"That's not what our plan was"
"i know, but..."

It was at this point that I thought about Seinfeld.  There's this great episode where George decides to do everything opposite of what his instincts are.  He ends up getting a job with the Yankees and all this other good stuff happens to him.  Everything works out for Opposite George.  Maybe I need to try an Opposite Laura it at all possible that with time, my instinct will not be to go get a Twix? 

Changing the Story

Sorry, I have been incommunicado the last few days – not really a ton to report. I’ve been doing ok on my food choices, tracking most of the time. No activity in for a while, which is not good. I think that I feel weird about working out right after work when J is home…like I sort of feel like I should be spending time with him – it was easier to go down to the basement and hop on the treadmill when he wasn’t there when I got home. It’s a very shabby excuse, I know, but I’m working on it.

I had the most annoying baby cold last week. It started with a sore throat on Monday and Tuesday and then I got a little better on Wednesday, but yesterday, sore throat, cough and stuffy nose. It wasn't really bad enough for me to miss work or take anything for it (aside from some Advil and Halls, I guess), but it definitely had me feeling worn out and annoyed.

BL update

So, Tuesday’s episode of BL was probably the best so far this season – game play is definitely in full swing and there is no shortage of crazy. Tracey is such a nutcase, I can’t believe they didn’t want her gone. On the other hand, since Mo threw himself under the bus, they might as well take the opportunity to give him the axe now and know they can get rid of Tracey later.

I thought there were some really sweet gestures last week – Rebecca offering her video from home to Dina, and Liz giving Danny her video from home…I bawled when he was like, “That’s MY family!” Those three are definitely becoming my faves.

However, I thought the most interesting thing was the story around Dina. She was working out with Jillian & was supposed to jump up on this little platform, probably about a foot off the ground, and she just couldn’t do it. She would give these little half-assed girly jumps about 4 inches high and just was unable to bend her knees in the air and get on the platform. I found myself trying to will her to get up on that little stool. She seems so scared to just jump, and it seems so easy. It’s like her brain just does not want to allow her body to do it. Jillian talked with her about how she needs to change the story that is going through her head, or nothing in her life will change; she might lose the weight, but unless she gets past the mental things that are holding her back, she won’t be able to keep it off. This struck a huge chord with me.

When I think about the story that I have for myself, I see how I relive it over and over.  I was looking at some pictures of me on FB the other day and realized that in every picture, I know exactly what I was thinking at that moment.  I was thinking, "I hate having my picture taken because I'm so fat, but starting tomorrow, it's all going to change and next year at this event, I'll be at my goal."  I also know that after each of those pictures was taken, I made a beeline to the food table and had a piece of cake, or second helping of some kind of chip & dip, or another glass of wine.  And, after consoling myself with junk food, I forget about my mental resolution and continue my regular habits.  So, that's the story of how I make goals. 

That's not the only story I've got going on in this head of mine.  I also have a story about my fitness abilities.  I was never an athletic kid.  I had asthma and was allowed to use that as an excuse not to be physically active.  Truthfully, physical activity scares me a little.  A few years ago, I got a bee in my bonnet to run a 5k.  I trained and ran it and finished feeling really great about myself.  I've participated in several more since then, running two or three all the way through, but most of them, I've walked for at least part, if not all of it.  Now, this has become my story: I will sign up for a race, train for a few weeks (2 or 3), decide that my training isn't progressing how I think it should, stop training and when race day comes, I'll run as far as I can (which usually isn't far) and walk the rest.  Then, my physcial activity stops until I sign up for another 5k with the great aspiration of running the whole thing.  I never would call myself a failure for this behavior, because I rationalize that at least I'm getting out there and doing it, but I never feel accomplished afterward, so I let myself FEEL like a failure.  I know that I can get by without having to challenge myself too much, so I don't.  How can it be that I'd rather feel like a failure than push myself out of my comfort zone? 

So, now I know about two paths I have carved out for myself - I'm sure there are more.  But, the real question is, how do I change these?  How do I let go of the behavoirs I'm comfortable with?  How do I take what I know and rewrite my story?

Monday, October 12, 2009

Motormouth Monday

Happy Monday, world! It is a snowy morning in St. Paul. And, if you want to know a secret, I'm kind of excited about it. Oh, don't get me wrong, I'm bummed about hardly having any fall at all, and I will get very sick of winter come mid-January, but I did get a little tingle of excitement this morning seeing those big fluffy flakes falling.

Weekend Recap

Had a pretty nice weekend, actually. Friday night we had planned to stay in, but decided to go up to North Minneapolis to watch the Twins’ game with two other couples. It was a heartbreaker of a game. I’ve never really had strong thoughts about this before, but now I can unequivocally say, “I hate the Yankees”. Jeter is so freaking smug, I can hardly stand it. I really was wishing for him to catch a ball right in the kisser.

Saturday, I slept in a bit and then had some Steel Cut Oats for breakfast – J made them overnight in the slow cooker and it was so nice to wake up on a chilly morning with snow on the lawn and the warm smell of oatmeal and dried fruit filling the kitchen. It’s an Alton Brown recipe – I’m sure you could Google it if you are intrigued.

After breakfast and lying around a bit, we drove down to Burnsville to check out the new Becker Furniture Outlet. We still need some furniture for our house. Mostly I’ve been looking on Craigslist, but haven’t had a ton of luck there, so we made yet another trip to a furniture store. I’m not a huge fan of furniture stores anymore and will be very thankful when we have no need to buy any more. No luck with furniture this weekend though.

On Friday, J had an appointment with a recruiter, and couldn’t find his dress shirt, suit pants or dress shoes. We gave the house a good once over and still couldn’t find them and concluded they must have been a) lost in the move or b) left in Rome when he went there for work in May. So, we went to the suit store and got him a really nice new suit, two shirts, and two new ties. He rarely has occasion to wear a suit, and the last one he’d had for 10 years, so it was time for an update anyway.

Saturday night, two of J’s, now former, co-workers took us out to dinner at Roat Osha in Uptown. It was okay – slightly better than average, I guess. We had a fried tofu red curry, which was not really spicy or flavorful enough for me. I didn’t try the Pad Thai. We also ordered beef skewers, which were very tasty. I was surprised that it’s a sister restaurant to Tum Rup Thai, which I had really enjoyed when we went there a couple of years ago.

After dinner, we headed over to Moto-I to play some bumper shuffleboard – super fun. If you haven’t been to Moto-I, definitely give it a try. It’s a sister restaurant to The Herkimer , just down the street, and it’s easy to tell - if the Herk was an Asian place, it would be Moto-i. If you go, ask for the honey martini – I’m sure it has another name, but I don’t know what it is…they drizzle honey in the glass and then make a martini with saki (made in house, I believe) and vanilla Stoli, then rim the glass with cinnamon and sugar – yummy!

After that, we decided it would be fun to see the midnight showing of Shawn of the Dead at the Uptown Theater. We’re pretty sure that Saturday was the zombie bar crawl, because we saw several groups of zombies out and about. As a result, we thought SOTD would be packed, but it was quite the opposite. We bought our tickets and went across the street to Zeno for a snack and coffee before the movie. Had this awesome flatbread with figs on it – really, really tasty.

SOTD was great, and I only took two little naps during :-) I don’t remember the last time I was up til 3:00 in the morning.

Yesterday was a nice lazy day in the house. I did some cleaning and found J’s lost suit pants and shirt in a laundry basket all ready to go to the dry cleaners. Oh well, he needed a new suit anyway.

Last night was J’s first curling game of the season and they got off to a great start. It was a fun game. I divided my time between watching them curl and watching the Twins lose to the Yanks again.

Wow, that was quite a long weekend re-cap!

What do I want?

So, I was doing some thinking about what I want and where my desires come from. I think a lot of my desires come from what I *think* I should want. I’m so out of tune with myself, that I don’t even know if what I think I want is truly coming from me, or if it’s from an outside influence. And, I’m so often wishy-washy about my goals, I wonder if it’s because of that. So, how do I know what I want?

Things I think I want:

• I want to feel energetic, healthy, and attractive
• I want to feel successful, a sense of accomplishment
• I want to be admired

It occurs to me, as I write this list, aren’t these things what everyone wants? Of course, I want to be healthy, of course I want to be successful – and I do think that achieving my weight loss goal will help me fulfill these desires – however, there must be something that holds me back, it seems like it would be so obvious to keep myself on a path that leads me to the above things, why do I choose not do it?

Perhaps I have *conflicting* goals.
Possible conflicting goals:

• I want to be comfortable
• I want to be comforted
• I want to be indulged
• I want to be fun

I’m starting to see these lists as two versions of me. The first list is my grown-up, serious self. The second list is the petulant adolescent self. Is there some way for me to have goals that satisfy both of these versions? Is there some balance that can be achieved to appease the whiny teenager when she says, “I don’t want to eat healthy, I want to eat the tastiest thing on the menu!” or “I don’t want to run, I want to watch television!”? How can I get the adolescent to grow up? And how can I get the grown-up to chill out a little?

Today, I’d like to work on formulating a goal that can help me achieve this balancing act – something that allows me to feel like I’m making progress, but I’m not taking away my own freedom.

This has been a very long post – thanks for hanging in there!! Have a great Monday!

Thursday, October 8, 2009

life, in a nutshell

hello, my little twisters.  well, things are getting a little better at our house - starting to come to grips with J's career change and starting to feel a little more normal to have him home all day long.  i used to always be the first person home in the afternoon, so it's kind of weird to have him there when i get home.

one of my favorite bnl songs is playing on my pandora station right now:  "life, in a nutshell"  - favorite verse:
"i fell down,
with no one there to catch me from fallin',
then she came around,
and only
her tenderness
stopped me from bawlin'
my eyes out - i'm okay."

steven page, i love your voice. seriously.

the reason i'm here

i've been doing ok on my health/fitness goals this week.  haven't been too bad with my eating - mostly because i'm trying not to spend unnecessary money on junk food at work.  i have not, however, been writing down my food choices, i hope to get back into that groove next week.  i also have not been working out. at all.  so, i would like to get back into that swing again also -  i just need to gear myself up a bit for it.  so, i'll start gearing up now...i will run on saturday.  i will run on saturday. i will run on saturday...

biggest loser update

how about biggest loser on tuesday?  i've said it before and i'll say it again: tracey is a nutter!!! she does that wide-eyed, crazy woman look and i just want to smack her upside the head.  i'm hoping she gets the heave-ho next week. i do like the girls on the pink team, but i'm getting really sick of hearing, "america picked me, so i owe it to them..." i actually voted for the other girl at last season's finale, anyway.  i think i'm going to be an orange team fan.  daniel seems like a sweet kid & i hope he gets rewarded for all the hard work he's done already. 

lemoncello (or limoncello if you want to be snooty about it)

so, i mentioned earlier this week that i was going to start making a batch of homemade lemoncello.  after reading some blogs that all claimed to have the BEST recipe, i found one that sounded good and started two batches last night.  i did one batch of lemoncello and one batch of grapefruitcello. 
10 organic lemons
1 liter Everclear

4 organic grapefruit
1 liter Everclear

i zested the fruit, careful to avoid the pith and added the zest to the Everclear.  now, it's supposed to sit for 4 days - 2 weeks.  we're hoping to do a taste test at our halloween party, so i think what i'll do is let it sit for 2 weeks, until the 21st, and then add the simple syrup, bottle them and let them sit another 10 days until the halloween party.  i'm a little skeptical about how the grapefruit is going to turn out.  i think i should have used ruby red grapefruit, but i just used the normal grapefuit that Trader Joe's had.  we'll just have to see, i guess.

halloween party

so, i mentioned our halloween party.  i like planning and i like pleasing people, so hosting parties is really something i enjoy.  we've had an "annual" halloween party for i think 3 years...we skipped last year because we were out of town for J's brother's wedding.  so, i'm looking forward to having it this year. plus, it's the first year in our huge house, instead of our tiny apartment.  the theme this year is in memory of the late, great John Hughes.  so, everyone can come dressed as a John Hughes character.  i think i have a pretty good idea for a costume, but i'll keep it a surprise. besides, i'm not sure if i can pull it off.

well, that's about all that's going on with me.  weigh-in tomorrow morning! and tomorrow's friday...i need a weekend in the worst way...


Tuesday, October 6, 2009

Shitty day

Well, perhaps the universe read my post from yesterday and thought, "Hey, looks like Laura is in need of some stress, it appears she's bored."  I got a big dose of stress yesterday afternoon.  J, my wonderful husband, lost his job.  We're both very sad about it.  He really liked his company and we felt like he could really be there for the long haul, and now it just seems like he's been dumped out of the blue.  It was very unexpected and we're still in shock.  We just bought our first home in May and now to have one of us without a job is scary to say the least.  Luckily, we're savers, so we do have an emergency fund, but it doesn't make this any easier emotionally. 

On the upside, now that I need to be more mindful about my spending, I think it will contribute to being more mindful about my eating too.  Cutting back on eating out will be a big money saver for us. 

I don't really have much else to say, life will get back to normal eventually...i just hate that i don't know when. 

Monday, October 5, 2009

Back in the saddle?

Ok, I had a not so great week last week.  You know, there was nothing really going on in my life that made me too busy, or too emotionally taxed, but I just was not on track with my goals.  I had a great week one, and then a rough week two.  I feel guilty that there was really no reason for me to not be making good choices.  It should have been just a regular week.  And, then, you know what? I stepped on the scale this morning and I'm still down 2 from my starting weight - that actually makes me feel more guilty - like I should be punished for not being on plan.  But, I am grateful too that I haven't undone all my hard work from week one. 

Had a pretty fun weekend.  On Friday night J and I went to Zombieland.  As a Shaun of the Dead fan, I didn't love Zombieland - but, you get what it promises, nothing more.  There's lots of zombies and it's fun and silly and the cameo is really good.  But it wasn't great. 

After the movie, we had dinner at Flame in Roseville.  Average food, average atmosphere, average service, but great late happy hour prices.  I enjoyed two glasses of wine for the price of one, so that was a plus.  The highlight of the meal was DIY smores for get to roast your own marshmallows.  It was fun. 

Saturday, my friend's little girl had her 5th birthday party, so I went over in the morning to help decorate a bit.  I left before the other kiddos got there, because J and I had some errands to run.  We drove to Hudson, WI to buy some Everclear because I've decided to make homemade lemoncello and apparently Everclear is better to use than vodka.  I'll let you know how it turns out :)

Saturday night, we met up with some friends for dinner.  Stayed out and had a few too many drinks and was feeling the pain on Sunday morning.  J doesn't really drink and isn't used to dealing with drunk people and was pretty scared I was going to puke in his car on the way home.  After this episode, I've decided to take a step back from drinking.  First of all, it makes me feel like shit the next day.  Second, it's just empty calories.  Third, I make poor eating decisions when I drink.  So, no more nights out like that for a while. 

Last night I dreamt I was running.  It was really easy and fun and I could run and run and run.  Will it ever be like that in real life?

My goal for today is to stay on track with food choices, and drink a ton of water.  I want to run tomorrow. 

I hope people are reading this.  Starting to feel kind of silly about posting to an empty room.  The blogging equivilant of talking to myself. 

Thursday, October 1, 2009


I didn't write yesterday because I didn't really have anything interesting, or nice, to say.  I've been in a funk all week.  And one funk day has just led to another and another for me.  I'm tired and cranky and feeling lonely and unmotivated.  My weight has been creeping up on the scale too.  I know that in order to feel better, I need to get back on track, cease the negative self-talk, and get some activity in, but the whiney 4 year old part of me just wants to wallow in it for a bit. 

I already had a chocolate chocolate chip muffin for breakfast this morning and I'm trying not to think that my day is shot.  I used to have a WW leader who would say, "If you accidentally break one dish, do you then go to the cupboard and break all the rest?"  Of course not.  One bad meal doesn't have to mean that I can't make good choices the rest of today.  Even if I don't feel like it.

Today is October 1st.  Time will march on even if I don't stick to my plan.  Time won't stop because I'm mopey. 

There will be shitty days.  There will be days I don't feel like running.  There will be days when I want to eat a whole pizza.  There will be awesome days.  Days that I feel like I could run a little further.  Days when I can easily say no to a slice of pizza.  But, most of the time, there will be so-so days, where choices are small challenges, but not insurmountable. 

I'll get out of this funk soon.  Maybe what I need is a fun weekend....

BL was awesome on Tuesday - lots of drama, which I love.  That Tracey is Looney Tunes! She's got the crazy eyes for sure.  She's really the only person I don't like.  Orange team, pink team, and green team are all starting to stand out to me.  Every season I wonder if I'll have that one person I really start to root for (like last season's Tara), who will it be this season?

So, I listened to some more of "Skinny Bitch" on tape.  I got to the second disk before I couldn't take anymore.  I just found it really condesending, harsh, and just plain annoying.  I've dabbled in vegetarian and dairy-free diets before, but for me, it's just not a realistic or balanced way to eat.  The great thing about trying to be vegetarian is that it exposed me to lots of great low cal, alternatives to meat that I probably would never have tried otherwise.  Now, I'm listening to a Lewis Black book on tape.  He's hilarious.  So, it's like I've traded a bitchy, snooty girl yelling at me for Lewis Black yelling at me...a great trade in my opinion.

Well, that's about all for today.  Friday is almost here...ugh, time flies.  :-p