Saturday, June 30, 2012

The Omen...

It feels very weird being up at 7:30am.  Especially on a Saturday.  But, I've decided to get out of the house today and go find some yard sales, take a drive up to the river, and whatever else I feel like doing while I'm out.

So, today's post is an honesty post.  Coming clean, I guess you could say.  And honestly?  I wasn't going to.  I wasn't going to say anything.  But after what I've seen this morning... I think it's for the better.  As much as it pains me to say it, I have to...
I didn't go to the gym yesterday.

The reasons are stupid.  I was dressed and ready.  And then my mom called to say she was bringing Butter home.  So, I decided to wait until she got here before I left.  I didn't realize that it would be 1pm before she got here.  And, my brother came with her and decided he wanted to stay for a few days.

None of that is any excuse.  The real truth is I could have still gone to the gym.  The gym was still open.  But, after I sat for a while, worked on packing for a while, waited, and then visited with my company - I just didn't feel like going.

And the worst thing is, I had no intention of saying anything about it this morning.  Not that I was going to lie.  You all know me well enough to know that is most definitely not how I roll.  I was just going to keep the information to myself.  Talk about something different.  Act like I had totally forgotten to mention whether I did or didn't go.

Why?  Because I was ashamed.  I was ashamed in myself and my actions.  I was so determined to go to the gym yesterday, restart my motivation...and I failed.  Again.

So, why the sudden change of heart?  

Because I discovered something this morning that has absolutely nothing to do with my going to the gym whatsoever - but I took it as an omen.  A sign.  Something that told me I had to do the right thing.  I have no idea why, but you've all seen and heard how my mind works...so it will probably make much more sense to you than I expect it to.

I will warn you, what you are about to see is disgusting.  It's gross.  But I just have to share...

I got up this morning, made some coffee, and then headed to the kids' bathroom to..urm...well, you know.. pee.  I don't hardly ever use the kids' bathroom, but I decided to this morning.  I'm guessing it's because I was supposed to see this...


Yes.  That is a freaking mouse.  In the toilet.  Dead.

Isn't that the most disgusting, terrifying, most disturbing thing you've ever seen?  I know it is for me.  Discovering something dead - especially a nasty, yucky mouse, in the toilet no less, gives me the biggest case of heeby geebies I've ever had in my life.

I have no idea how it got there.  I don't know if it fell in the toilet, came up through the pipe, or decided that my house was just so hot that it couldn't take it anymore and decided to end it all. 

Looking at it now, while I'm trying to type, is tying my stomach in knots.

So, what the freak does a dead mouse in the toilet have with me not going to the gym?  Again, absolutely nothing.  But, you all know that I have the power to connect the dots... make it mean something, right?  Oh yes.

You see, my determination and motivation lately has been either sink or swim.  And I've been doing a lot of sinking.  I say one thing, I do the opposite.  My intentions are motivated, my actions are the opposite.  I declare that I will lose the weight - or die trying... but what have I done?

The truth is, I'm drowning.  

As I watch all the pounds that I lost slowly come back to me, my head feels like it's falling under the water.  I came so far, worked so hard, and I'm now watching it all float away each time I step on the scale or put on  some pants. 

The sadness I feel from my failure is pulling me further and further down under the water.  I'm coughing and spluttering stuff on here just to keep my head afloat...to keep trying to tell myself that I will make the commitment once again.  But, then my lungs start to fill with water...and I give up, before I ever start.

But, deep down, I know that if I don't start moving my legs and arms, making myself move... I will end up like that mouse.  Not drowned in a toilet, but drowned in my weight with very little chance of making it out alive. 

Peanut and my brother have both told me that they want to go to the gym with me over the next few days.  Tomorrow, we are going to get up and go.  My brother while he's here, and Peanut until it's time for me to go back to work.  They are on my side.  They see how much it means to me - but the prodding and poking I need to get it done.

I can't do it alone.  I just can't.  No matter how much I try to tell myself that I can or want to. 

I don't want to end up a lonely old mouse, dead in a toilet.

I want to feel full of life, full of hope, and know that I can overcome the biggest of obstacles. 

I will take it one day at a time and see how it goes.  But, I've received my omen...my sign. 

RIP Little Disgusting Mouse.  Know your death wasn't in vain.  It showed me how I need to get off my behind and do something about my weight problem, before I drown in it.

Till next time. ;)
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Friday, June 29, 2012

Friday's Letters...


Got a few ideas for some nice (or not so nice) letters you wish you could write?  Well, then why don't you...and then link up with this fun blog theme post?? Huh?  Huh?

Dear Weather Man - I don't like you.  At all.  I'm so sick of hearing about the record breaking temps that seem as if they'll be here for a very long time.  You're all excited about beating the longest running record for temperatures over 100 degrees?  I'm excited to stick you in an oven, baste you with Crisco, and see how long you can last.  You suck!

Dear Sun - I know you're in cahoots with Weather Man.  You think you're all big and bad, don't you?  Blasting us with your constant rays and heat isn't very nice.  Your mother should have taught you a think or two about a little going a long way, not to be egotistic, or using your power for good not evil.  Shame on you!

Dear Deer - Thank you for choosing my backyard to bring your babies to eat.  It's so nice to look out my back window and see you and your family grazing in our over-grown grass.  I don't really have much more to say, but I wanted to write "Dear Deer".

Dear Gym-iny - I'm going to they gym today, just like you told me to.  While I'm there, I expect you to go all Jillian Michaels or Arnie on my behind.  Don't let me quit when I feel like I've had enough...make me work harder.  I'm expecting to do the 30 minute circuits and 30 minutes on the elliptical - at least.  More would be great, but no less than that.  M'Kay?

Dear Jelly - I spent a good part of yesterday cleaning your play room.  I expect it to stay clean.  You will learn where all the toys go, and put them back in those spots when you are done playing.  Being four doesn't earn you any more excuses.  Four is old enough to know how to clean up your own mess.  If you are old enough to cop an attitude, roll your eyes, and use sarcasm correctly - then you are old enough to clean up some toys.

Dear Laundry - It's about damn time you learned how to fold yourself.  I'm getting so tired of doing it.

Dear Scale - I still hate you.  I still think you are the devil.  But, I plan on making amends over the next couple of weeks.  I'll play nice if you play nice.  If you like your solid black casing, fancy digital number display, and don't want to feel yourself smashed up against a wall - I expect you to show me how my hard work is paying off.  No excuses for me, and definitely no excuses for you.

Dear Motivation - Did you enjoy your vacation?  I hope so, because you won't be taking one for a very long time.  Who takes a six month vacation?  That's just ridiculous.  Even teachers don't get that long off work.  Being that I do enjoy your company, and feel that you do great work when you're actually working, I'm not going to fire you.  But, I do expect you to pick up the slack from the past six months while you've been off enjoying the good life.  That means double shifts, overtime, and very few breaks.  Very few as in none.

Dear Clothes in My Closet - I'm so sorry I've abandoned you.  I love you, really I do.  I promise to do everything in my power to bring you out of that dark space and back in to the light of day.  It won't be something that happens overnight, but I'm going to work on it.  I hope to feel you and see you again, very soon.

Alright, that's it for me today.  I have some work to get done before I'm off to the gym.  I'm actually looking forward to it - and blogging about it, tomorrow.


Till next time. ;)
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Thursday, June 28, 2012

The Introduction of Gym-iny Cricket!


I have conscience.  

One that speaks to me, gives me advice, puts up the red-flags when things aren't right.  

Sometimes I listen, sometimes I don't. 

There are times when I'm pretty sure my conscience is mad at me and stays silent while I try and make tough decisions on my own.

One thing my conscience has been quiet about for a very long time is helping me with my weight loss.

He gave up on that a long time ago.

He used to offer subtle little warnings when I was on the hunt for foods I shouldn't eat.

He would try and remind me what will happen if I continue to ignore him. make open promises to myself, and always go back on my word.

I would get bigger.

My clothes would no longer fit.

I would say goodbye to the short period of time where I was able to shop in normal department stores for clothes, and feel great about how that made me feel.

He warned.  Kindly.

I didn't listen.

Yesterday, I took a drive with Peanut and Jelly up to Missouri so that they could see the new town they'd be going to school in.  We drove around checking things out, stopping at a little store, dropping off my teaching contract.  The second to last stop on the trip was at the school I'll be teaching - where Peanut will be going to school.  Right after that, I was supposed to take Jelly to her new school to get her enrolled and have a look around.

When we pulled up to my school, I got out of the car and something didn't feel right.  I felt a rush of air on my behind.  Coming in, not going out.  I reached back behind me, and I heard a chuckle - no, a downright evil laugh - coming from inside my head.  Where I should have felt my shorts, I felt skin.  Open, exposed to the world skin, right on my butt.  My pants had ripped...from just under the waistband, all the way down over my butt, down my leg.  My behind was on full display to the world.

I quickly jumped back into the car.  I felt the flush of red across my cheeks that indicated exactly how I was feeling.  Of course, Peanut and Jelly thought it was hysterical - and just couldn't stop laughing.  I laughed, too, but another laugh inside my head jarred me.  It was dark, ominous....full of the tone of "I told you so"  It wasn't a voice I recognized.

Our trip had to come to a sudden end, so that I could go home and change my pants.  While I was driving, I was calling out to the voice that had appeared in my mind.  Who are you?  Where did you come from?  Where's the other voice I usually hear that is a lot sweeter and nicer and never says anything mean to me?

And there it was... the evil, dark voice... "You know, you should let your conscience be your guide".  

Apparently, I have been watching WAY too much Once Upon A Time.  My conscience is now Jiminy Freaking Cricket?  

Yes, that's the part that made me stop and think.  Nothing about hearing voices in my head is unusual to me whatsoever.  *Sigh*

And then the voice spoke again.  "Oh no, you're way past the need of cartoon crickets.  You won't listen.  You'll just ignore it - just like you did with the other one.  The other one is gone... and I am here.  From now on, my dear, I will be you conscience - and we'll keep the name you picked...except I spell my name Gym-iny."

That's it.  I've done completely lost my freaking mind.  Gone are Disney tunes and Broadway music playing in my head.  Now I've got a psycho conscience that sounds like he means business.  

I have two choices.  A)  Call Therapy Dude.  STAT.  or B) Listen to what the guy has to say...while keeping Therapy Dude's number close at hand.

And there he was again "How did it make you feel having the pants rip off you?  Is this what you want?  Clothes that go beyond tight to literally ripping from the pressure?  You are going to have to do something about this. NOW! You are going to go to the gym.  You are going to work out.  You are going to lose the weight.  There will be no whimsical thoughts or desires.  It will be hard work, but with a huge pay-off.  You're running out of time.  It's now or never."

And then he was gone.

I thought about it all the way home.  I thought about it while driving back out to go do a little shopping.  I thought about it while I was walking around stores like Old Navy, Gordman's... the stores I used to enjoy shopping in.  I thought about it while we were eating dinner, while I was eating my salad. 

Then I got a text.  From my gym.  Offering all members the chance to take a guest every single day in July - for free.  

Good timing or very weird timing?  I'll let you decide that one.

I looked straight at Peanut and said "Wanna go to the gym with me next month?"  And she said she'd love to.  Peanut has been very mindful with her eating since school got out.  She's not over-doing it.  She's not thin-crazy. She's just being mindful...a trick I taught her that she now uses.  She's also mentioned how much she wants to be able to work out with me. And here was our chance.

I'm not waiting until July - even though it's only three days away.  I start going to the gym tomorrow.  It would be today, but I have some stuff I need to deal with at home.  But tomorrow, Friday, I will be taking the short drive to the gym.  I will be signing up for a personal trainer.  I will be hitting the 30 minute circuit training and the elliptical.  It will be day 1.  The start.  Finally.  Again.

I kinda like the idea of having a cricket in my ear that looks and sounds like Arnold Schwarzenegger.  He's tough.  He won't listen to excuses.  He'll keep me on track.  

And for anyone that is now very concerned for my sanity - fear not.  There is a very solid line between crazy and imagination.  Besides, if it means hearing cartoon voices in my head to get me to go to the gym - is it really that crazy?  I think not.

So, I say BRING IT ON, GYMINY.  I'm ready for ya! 

Till next time. ;)

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Wednesday, June 27, 2012

WTF Wednesday?


When it's summer break, and I haven't really been doing much more than lazing around the house, cleaning, or packing up school stuff - it makes my blog ideas run as dry as the earth outside my front door.  I could come up with something to go on about... or, I could join in a really fun blog link-up with Draz.  Draz wins again!  This time, it's called WTF Wednesday.  Things that just make you say Who, Why, or What the Freak?  

If you wanna join in, click photo and go link up on Draz's blog - so that I can read them...and she can, too!

WhyTF do meteorologists get so excited about breaking weather temperature records?  Apparently, we're in the middle of a record breaking heat-wave right now...and they share it with us as if it's a story about a winning lotto ticket.  If our area is under a record breaking heat wave, with temps over 100 for the next 10 days or so, then I am in NO mood to celebrate.  Burn bans, drought, and heat stroke probability is nothing to get excited about.  When there's some much needed rain in the forecast - then come back to us, k?

WTF is up with women owning 25 bathing suits?  Seriously.  I've been browsing through the Facebook photos of some people I know, and almost every girl has about 8 pictures where they're wearing a different bathing suit in every one.  This fat girl may not understand bathing suit etiquette.  Is there supposed to be one for each day of the week?  How about different places to swim?  Is there supposed to be a designated pool bathing suit, river bathing suit, lake bathing suit, and ocean bathing suit?    I own two.  One that I keep at my mom's for her pool and the other I keep at my house to swim everywhere else.  Is that wrong?  Should I have more?  I just don't get it.

WTF are the America's Got Talent judges thinking this year?  SPOILER ALERT!!!  They send a human cannon ball straight through to New York, yet they send home Opera Marilyn Manson.  I can't believe some of the people they send home versus the ones they keep.  AND they send home a veteran with brain damage and a speech impediment - than can sing like Garth Brooks - but they keep an idiot who likes getting kicked in the balls.  Seriously...WTF???

Peanut and Jelly have been spending quite a bit of time together since Butter went to my parent's house.  Now, Jelly has been copping some serious attitude... like serious, 12 year old attitude.  WhyTF has the 4 year old started acting like the 12 year old?  Why can't it be reversed?  It would just be awesome if Peanut asked to snuggle with me on the couch or asked if we could play a game together.  But, no, I have to put up with Jelly rolling her eyes, mouthing "I hate you" to Peanut whenever I turn my back, and using phrases like "whatever" or "cause I said so". *sigh* 

I was reading a status update on Facebook yesterday from my favorite local radio DJs.  They were sharing that a person had called in to the show and stated that "people with tattoos make bad parents because they are setting bad examples".  W-T-F??  I'm pretty sure that people who judge others aren't setting the best examples for their children.  WhoTF does that person think he is?  I have a tattoo and I'm a damn good parent.  Not only that, but both of my parents have tattoos - and I turned out just fine.  I'm going to be a hypocrite here and judge him right back:  He's an idiot.  Some people need to seriously think before they speak.  Especially when it comes to broadcasting your stupid, naive beliefs on a radio station.  My heart feels for the children of this guy - if he has any.  It seems to me the people that think they are experts on children are the people that don't have any.  WhoTF would want to procreate with a D-bag like that, am I right?

I want to know how I can use the phrase WTF about a zillion times a day, yet have a tough time coming up with six examples to share on here.  WTF is up with that?  WTF is one of my favorite phrases... yet, when I have to write about it my mind goes blank.  Figures.  That happens a lot when I'm blogging.  I come up with a great idea, or totally copy someone else's great idea - and then sit here with a blank mind.  WhyTF does that happen? 

That was fun.  A little challenging, but a lot of fun.  Now, if you want to do something like this - click on the picture and link up with Draz.  Be sure to read her WTF Wednesday post - it's a hoot!

Till next time. ;)
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Tuesday, June 26, 2012

It's Tuesday, Tuesday, Tuesday...


So, it's that day of the week where I tell you my dark, little secrets again.  I'm pretty sure that True Confessions Tuesday is the longest running "theme" post I've done on my blog.  Do you know I've been doing this for over a year now?  I know.  Crazy, isn't it?  But, I still enjoy it...

I confess that my days are so mushed together that today could be Friday, Sunday, Wednesday... they all feel the same.  I only know it's Tuesday because I looked at my calendar this morning.  Being off work for so long does that to me.  I'm not complaining.  Don't mistake my confession for complaining.  I think it's freakin' awesome that I don't have to worry about what day it is.  Until the end of July, anyways.

I confess that I've been sleeping later than I have in probably ten years.  Getting up after 9am, even on the weekends, just isn't something I do.  But recently? I've been going to bed around 1am and not getting up until 10!  That's just crazy.  Again, absolutely no complaints here. 

I confess that being a teacher is the bestest, most awesomest job in the whole wide world!  And, yes, I'm fully aware that bestest and awesomest are not real words... I'm qualified to teach, really.

I confess that weather in the upper 90s and low 100s sucks big Satan balls.  I've said it many times before, but apparently the universe won't listen:  I HATE HOT WEATHER!  Upper 80s and lower 90s I can tolerate - if I'm in a pool with a fruity beverage... but anything above that just makes me cranky.  I won't get in to a pool when it's 100 degrees outside, because I just feel like a boiled lobster.  My AC is also complaining about the heat, and the poor ol' gal just doesn't have the oomph to keep up with it.  It's 90 degrees at 7am and keeps going up from there. My English blood just isn't cut out for this type of weather.  Although, looking on the bright side, I sweat without doing any form of movement at all.  That's got to be some kind of plus, right?

I confess that it's a terrible idea to take a 4 year old to an art gallery.  Just down right stupid.  Why I ever thought that Jelly would be interested in walking around and looking at beautiful art is beyond me.  Ten minutes in and she was whining "I'm tired of looking at old pictures".  I managed to keep her there for 2 hours, but it took some coaxing.  We didn't look at 1/3rd of the exhibits - but Jelly did enjoy the abstracts.  She made several comments about how the pictures looked like the pictures she made at school.  I have to hand that one to her.  My fridge does hold several replicas of some of the art on display at the multi-million dollar art gallery.

I confess that I went to the grocery store yesterday and stocked up on tons of clean(ish), fresh stuff to eat.  Lots of veggies, mulit-grain bread, deli meats, yogurt, fruit, cottage cheese... you get the idea, right?  The meal plan for the entire week is nothing but sandwiches, salads, and wraps.  Partly because of the heat, and partly because I'm sick to death of seeing the scale go up anymore.

I confess that Peanut took a few pics of me at the museum yesterday, and I want to delete every one of them.  I'm back to...well, not back to, I've been this way for a while now... of hating anyone taking my picture.  There's no chance that my Facebook page will be bombarded with duck-face, stand in front of the mirror poses any time soon.  But, all those duck-face haters out there get ready.  When I get back to liking the way I look, Facebook may flag my account.  Although I'm gonna come up with something more creative than a freakin' duck face.  Why anyone thinks that puckering your face up to look like a elephant's rear end is simply beyond me.  Whatever happened to just smiling in a photo?

I confess that I don't like how quiet it's been in Blogland, lately.  I'm sure it has a lot to do with the time of the year.  It may have a lot to do with the fact that my creative juices are a little on the dry side.  Whatever it is, I want my commenters back!  Please?

I confess that this week, I've learned a valuable lesson about honesty and professionalism.  And, in that lesson I've been taught that a fresh start is EXACTLY what I need.  While the information I've learned has been hard to swallow, it's ramped up my excitement about my new career venture 100 times over.  I know this is very cryptic.. but it comes down to people should just be honest with me.  I don't like being lied to.  I respect people much more for being honest with me, even if it's not what I want to hear.  I went out on a limb with someone I know to not believe some of the not-so-nice things I'd been told about them.  Then, I got to learn first hand that everything I'd heard about them was true.  Honestly is, and always will be, the best policy.  Some people have apparently never learned that philosophy.

I confess that I should really get to doing the stuff I'm supposed to do today.  I slept until 10 and have been sitting here ever since.  My classroom stuff is not going to pack its self.  My bedroom and bathroom are also not going to clean themselves.  And I'm not going to burn any "cleaning calories" by sitting here, drinking coffee, and being lazy.

Toodles!

Till next time. ;)
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Monday, June 25, 2012

Bingo, Schmingo

This really pains me to tell you all.  Like rip out my heart pain.  Ending a relationship is tough, but I had to weigh my options and follow what my heart was telling me.  And, my heart says....

It's time for Bingo and I to break up.

Just for a while.

A Ross and Rachel kinda break.

If you've read my blog at all over the past couple of months, chances are you know how in love with Bingo I was.  I mean, the thought of going to the bingo hall, hanging out with all those people I didn't know, in the hopes of earning a quick buck?  Just pure joy to me.

But not anymore.

The last couple of times I've been, I've felt this awkwardness between Bingo and I.  Like we're forcing our relationship.  Number after number hurled at me - and not a single one of them on my cards.  It hurts.  There's no need for that kind of abuse.

Yesterday, I decided to give the relationship one last chance.

For EIGHT AND A HALF HOURS, I played bingo.  From 1:30 to 10pm.  And I didn't win a dang thing.  Didn't even get close enough to sweat or think I might win.

That was pure dedication on my part, but I got nothing back in return.  Which made it clear that we definitely both need our space away from each other.

Please don't feel sad for me.  I know I'll get through this.  It just means I need to start looking around for other opportunities in which to spend my free time.  Plenty of fish in the sea, right?

To start my healing process, I've planned a trip to the new museum today.  It's been open for a while, now, but I haven't got to go.  It's the first museum of it's kind in our area.  A real museum, with art and fancy old stuff in it.  Real swanky like.  I've decided the girls need some exposure to culture like that...so that's what we're going to do.

The museum is also surrounded by some wonderful hiking trails.  Not sure how much hiking we'll do in 100 degree weather... but it will be nice to at least check the place out, so I have some ideas for places to go when the weather is back to my liking.  You know, like 40 degrees.

Butter is at my parent's house.  My brother and sister came and picked him up Saturday night.  My brother apparently missed Butter a lot, despite the.. urm... "issues" we had while my brother was away.

I'm happy.  Butter is not the kid that can sit around the house for any amount of time.  He needs to be out doing stuff - and my parent's house can provide all that he needs to tend to his lack of attention and patience.

This gives the girls and I time to hang out.  Go to the museum, have a little lunch, maybe go do some shopping.  We can have fun...while my heart heals over the loss of my bingo love.

And, I'm thinking tomorrow is the day I get my rear back to the gym!  No, it's not a rebound.  I'm not jumping from one place where I don't know anyone to another place I don't know anyone.  I just want the gym and I to be friends...nothing more.  Yet.  I plan on taking it slow, and see what develops.  M'kay?

Till next time. ;)
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Sunday, June 24, 2012

The Size of Life

Last night, I went out for a long over-due evening out with my two closest gal pals.  A girls' night out means I get to get a little dressed up, splash on some make-up, and make my hair cooperate into looking like I have at least put in some effort to fix it.

It's somewhat of a special occasion for me.  I don't wear make-up very often.  My hair remains in a firm pony tail or down with a quick brush through 98% of the time.  And recently, my clothes of choice have been baggy shorts and t-shirts.

I thought I'd be really excited about my night to glam myself up just a little.

That was, until I walked in to my closet.

As I rummaged around for clothing, I began to get a little upset.  I tried a few things on, and couldn't take my eyes off of the fat roll that emerged around my waist.  The jeans that I usually run to in my time of need were hard to button.  Every shirt clung to me like cling wrap exposing all the bulges and bumps that my body now has on display.  It was depressing.

I decided to stick with my jeans - tighter than what they were the last time I put them on.  And I grabbed a button up shirt that was way too hot for the weather, but did a good job of covering the mountain range around my mid-section.

My friends and I went out to eat at a small pizzeria.  We sat out on the patio and ordered a couple of drinks.  I was so uncomfortable.  I was hot and sweaty.  I felt shaky on the little plastic chair I was sitting on.  I wanted nothing more than to get out of there and hide.

After dinner, we went back to my friend's house and sat on her porch.  Where I didn't have to worry about who was looking at me, or feeling uncomfortable and out of place.

I realized this morning, that's not who I am.  Or used to be.  I was the girl who LOVED going out.  I enjoyed mingling with complete strangers.  I enjoyed the night life feel and vibes.  But, then I realized...

I'm not that girl, anymore.

I was that girl when I weighed 212lbs.  When I looked in the mirror and didn't see fat rolls or awkward bulges, but progress.  I saw a slimmer waist-line.  Still not perfect, but much better than I'd ever seen before.  I saw banging curves.  I put clothes on with ease, and felt good in them.

It hit me that my size is defining who I am.  Again.

I don't like that feeling.  I don't like knowing that the way I look affects how I feel about being out in public, spending time with my friends, interfering with my ability to enjoy myself.   But, I know deep down there's only one way to fix it.

I have to change.

Not just the way I feel, but the way I look.  I can't go on pretending that I'm OK with myself right now.  Because I most definitely am not.  I can't pretend that my size doesn't define me.  Because it does.  When I'm fitter and thinner - I'm happier.  When I'm bigger and less fit - I'm unhappy.  When I struggle to get in to my clothes, or don't like the way I look in them - I'm down right miserable.

The first four weeks of my summer break I was preoccupied with being at my parents'.  Last week, I was preoccupied with teaching classes at a summer camp.  What do the next five weeks hold?  Being preoccupied with losing this damn weight and getting my life back.  There's no more time to sit and worry about it, anymore.  I just have to do.

And you can take that to the bank.

In five weeks, I will stand in front of my mirror and be more happy about what I see.  I will put on a pair of pants and not struggle and wiggle to squeeze myself in to them.  I will go out for an evening jog, because that's become the habit of what I need to do in order to keep pushing through. 

My size will have a new definition for my life.  It will be smaller.  The size, but my life will be better.  I will be better.  And it won't be about how I look, but what I've accomplished.  Well, who am I kidding?  How I look will be a big part of it, too.

I'm ready.

Till next time. ;)
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Saturday, June 23, 2012

Friday's Letters... On Saturday

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So, the last couple of weeks, Draz has started doing something a little different on Fridays.  Usually, she does Bring Your Own Crazy.  And I really liked it.  But, now she's been trying something different...and I really like it, too.  It's called Friday's Letters.  They are linked up by another blogger over at Adventures of Newlyweds

I've actually done these before.  It's been a while now, but the few times I did them - I had a great time.  It's a way to get some stuff off my chest by writing short letters.  Here, I'll show you...

Dear Weather Man... When you tell me that there's a cold front coming through the area and now the temperature will be 90 instead of 95, you need your eyeballs poked out with a pencil.  The definition of a cold front should be that the temps will drop drastically - and will offer some relief to those people (like me) that hate hot, humid weather.  You should be ashamed about getting people's hopes up.

Dear Karma/Universe/Whatever you are... Thanks for showing me once again how I should stop doubting myself and be grateful for what I have.  I received your signals loud and clear, and know what I'm supposed to be doing.

Dear Honesty... There are a few people that have been desperately missing your company.  I think you know who I'm talking about.  It feels like you're slacking on your job just a little - and you need to make a few house calls.  Pronto!  Maybe host a seminar about giving people the truth, even though it's not what they want to hear.  I can't speak for all people, but I know I'd much rather hear the truth.  So, get on that for me - m'kay?

Dear Scale... I hate you.  You are the devil.  That is all.

Dear Creators of Magic Mike... You are freakin' geniuses!  No, I haven't seen the movie, yet, but I know that it will be awesome.  Oscar worthy, even.  Any time you put Channing Tatum on the big screen and allow him to strip his clothes off, the skies open up and the angels rejoice.  You can bet your bottom dollar my behind will be front and center when this piece or artistic magic opens on the big screen.

Dear Apple... Please work on adding a Photoshop feature to FaceTime.  I love that I'm now able to see people when they call me - but when those people call me at 8am, I don't want to look like the creature from the Black Lagoon.  An addition that allows me to add a quick touch-up of make-up and lay down the bush that is my hair would work wonders.   I know.  The idea is incredible, and you can't believe you didn't think of it yourselves.  You're welcome.

Dear Version of Me While I Was At My Parent's House.... Why didn't you come home with me?  I thought we had the discussion that being I had turned into a Domestic Goddess, you would come back to my house and help me be that way here.  You weren't supposed to ditch me the minute my parent's car pulled in the driveway.  This house isn't going to get clean if you're not here, I know it.  Get your booty back to me.  My house needs it.

Dear Clothing Makers... There should be some standards about size.  I know there aren't any because one pair of size 18 pants will fit me perfectly, while a different brand of size 18s won't even get over my big behind.  It's not fair.  Do you know that messing with consumers like that has drastic effects to our self-esteem?  There needs to be some mandates or laws or something that depicts certain measurements for certain sizes.  Meaning I can buy whatever brand of pants I want - and if they are size 18, they will all fit me or not fit me.  I know, I know - there are different body types and measurements for people... but how about coming up with a way to fix that problem instead of stamping a number on everything that means something different to every single person that puts them on?  Just saying.  

Dear Jelly... I know that being at home during the summer is tough on you.  But, that doesn't mean you get to empty out every toy box and drawer of toys that you own, and scatter thousands of toys around the living room.  I'm not sure if you're trying your own daycare make-over, but it's getting a little old.  Pick up your stuff, already!

Dear Bingo Balls at the Bingo Hall... I'm coming to see you tomorrow, so do a girl a favor and come out in the order that will help me win big.  Or little.  I don't care.  Win something, that better?  You haven't been very nice to me AT ALL the past few times I've been to see you.  I'm not sure what I did or said to upset you, but I'm sorry.  Let's be friends again, best friends, k?

Dear Sanity and Hope... I am so freakin' excited about our Girls' Night Out tonight.  Pinky promise me that we won't wait months and months before we do it again.  Especially since I will be working in a different state.  I think we MUST go back to at least once a month.   Be prepared to swear an oath in blood tonight.  Just kidding.  Or am I?

And that's it.  That's all I've got.  But, that was tons of fun.

If you want to link up and do your own Friday's Letters - on Saturday - you can click the picture and do it.  Come on, you know you've got a few things that deserve a nice, friendly note.

Now, I'm going to enjoy a relaxing Saturday.

Till next time. ;)
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Friday, June 22, 2012

Finally Friday!

This week has gone by too freaking slow.  I'm so happy it's Friday...and after today I can go back to sleeping in until 8 and doing stuff I wanna do during the day.  Like sort my teaching stuff, or go swimming, or lay on the couch all day and watch trashy TV, or go to the gym.

Today is my last day of teaching camp classes.  I've enjoyed it.  It's been fun.  But I don't know what I was thinking when I agreed to do it - knowing I'd have to get up at the butt crack of dawn.

It didn't help that I slept like crap last night.  I was still wide awake at midnight - and my alarm was going off at 5:30. 

I slept like crap because I got an email right before I went to bed last night.  An email I probably wasn't supposed to see, and shouldn't have looked at before going to bed.  Can't go in to any details - but let's just say it was enough to get my mind racing.  A racing mind equals a non-sleeping mind. 

So, now, I'm all tired and a little cranky and my mind is STILL racing with images started by that email.

Yesterday was an exhausting day at camp.  I got to teach a class of 6 year olds.  You all know how much I love 6 year olds, right? That's kindergarten age.  They make my heart rate increase, my head start spinning, and my palms sweaty.  If there was or is a phobia or kindergarten kids - I have it.  Yes, even being a teacher.  Kindergarten children scare the bejeezus out of me... because they are very hard to settle down, have way too much energy, and have the attention span of a gnat.  And I was supposed to teach them about the importance of hydration FOR NINETY MINUTES!

But, I learned something I was very shocked to learn.  There are several six year olds that can't last five minutes doing physical activity.  Seriously.  The one class that I thought would knock my socks off in terms of the exercise segment of the class didn't.  What.  The.  Freak?

I also learned that the skinnier a child, the less energy they have.  No joke.  The one girl that down right refused to do any more than a couple of jumping jacks before crying that she was too tired was about as big around as my thigh.  She was so lethargic.  No amount of encouragement or support could get her to do anything.  I even got down and did sit-ups with her.  I knocked out ten in the time it took her to do three.. and then she was done.  She just couldn't do anymore.

Then, I remembered that I'd seen that trend throughout the week.  The really skinny kids had a really tough time doing any form of physical activity.  The kids that ran circles around me weren't skinny.  They weren't overweight.  They had some meat on their bones.  And then I realized - Duh, Joanna....I know that skinny doesn't mean healthy.

I'm still overweight - big time - but I know that I don't want to be skinny.  And by skinny I mean bones showing.  I don't want my ribs to stick out of my sides.  I don't want a collarbone big enough to hang clothes off of.  I want curves.  I want meat.  I just don't want handfuls of it.  If I can do more sit-ups and even push-ups than a six year old... I haven't lost all hope.  I can still do way more now than I could two years ago when I was hovering around 300lbs.

Today, I have the other group of children that make me very nervous.  The 11 and 12 year olds.  That's 6th/7th grade level.  That's where there's a lot of attitude, not wanting to do stuff cause it's too embarrassing, and I better find a way to bring Justin Bieber in to the conversation - or I'll lose the girls 5 minutes in.  But, it's also probably the most crucial age to get my message across to.  Their bodies are changing, they are starting that level where girls are obsessed with body image and boys are dreaming of playing professional sports.  And there's Facebook, video games, and cell phones to compete with.

I really have to buckle down today and do what I can to imprint some form of wisdom on these kids.  It will be tough, but I think I can do it.
 
Well, it's time to go.

Till next time. ;)

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Thursday, June 21, 2012

You've Got to Give Everything a Second Chance

Last week, I decided to try a new blog post idea that I copied stole borrowed from Draz (an amazing blogger).  It was called Ten Things Thursday.

I've borrowed several blogging ideas from Draz.  She just has a knack for writing, and then when I read it I get this delusional idea in my head that I'll be able to pull off a similar blog post just as well.  That's never the case, but I do usually always enjoy writing the posts.  Until last Thursday.  It was hard coming up with ten random things to write about - and I'm a very random person!  I think I struggled so much with it because I was still at my parent's house, and consumed by everything related to that.

Well, I've been back for almost a week now.  I thought it was only fair that I give Ten Things Thursday one more shot - just to see if I still do as bad as I did last week...

1.  I am now officially licensed to teach in the state of Missouri!  Got my email on Monday telling me that the Department of Education in Missouri are going to trust me teaching their youth and issued me a teaching license so that I can teach Pre-K through 6th grades.  It was a great bit of news to start my week.

2.  In the state of Arkansas, where I did all of my schooling to become a teacher and received my initial teaching license, I am only certified to teach up to 4th grade. I think it's crazy and very cool that I jump to another state, and earn the certification to teach two additional grades - just by submitting some paperwork.  Not that I ever had nor probably will have any desire to teach higher than 4th grade... but who doesn't love freebies when they can get them?

3.  I'm on a role with my teaching stuff today, so I'll go ahead and mention that the board notes from the last board meeting were published this week...announcing that I'd officially been hired by the school board.  Phew!  That's a relief.  Getting a teaching job isn't as easy as hearing the words "you're hired" by a school principal.  They offer you the job, then the superintendent has to OK it, and then the school board has to OK it.  Check!  Check!  Check!  Now, a month after receiving my job offer, I am now officially an employee of the school district. 

4.  This weekend, I'm planning a couple of kid-free outings for myself.  One being a night out with Sanity and possibly Hope.  We haven't had a girls' night out in so long.  Too long.  We need to celebrate the summer, celebrate finally getting teaching jobs, (Hope already had one, but she is more than willing to celebrate with Sanity and I) and celebrate anything else we can think of celebrating.  I am a firm believer that you're just never too old to go out for a drink with friends, make complete fools out of ourselves, and laugh until our sides hurt. 

5.  My other kid-free outing is another day at Bingo.  I'm starting to feel like a 60 year old woman... but dang, I love me some bingo.  I have no interest in any other form of gambling.  Plus, I'm due for a win.  It's been a couple of months, now, and my palms are getting a little itchy.  I need to come up with some extra cash for a down payment on a house somehow...might as well try my luck with an afternoon at bingo.  Please keep comments about how I should be saving my money to yourself..m'kay?

6.  I showed the kiddos in my nutrition class, yesterday, the picture of me before I started losing weight.  This picture...


They were genuinely surprised, and I was genuinely relieved that they were so surprised.  One girl said "you were fat in that picture, now you're just chubby".  I never thought I'd want to hug a kid so much for calling me "chubby".  It made me realize that even though I've gained 35lbs in the past year, I have still lost a considerable amount of weight since that photo was taken.  Enough to shock the crap out of a bunch of kids.  And then I realized that if I had still been at 212lbs - my lowest weight - that shock would have probably been about 10 fold.  I promised myself that I'd volunteer to go back to the camp next year and teach a similar class... but this time be a lot less "chubby" than I am now.

7.  I have been shocked at the amount of kids I can out-run and out exercise the past two days.  No joke. Seriously.  Stop laughing!  I haven't been able to run much, and I couldn't remember the last time I tried to do sit-ups or push-ups.  But I did them the past two days...and could do more than several of the small kids in my classes.  At first, that made me happy...then realization sunk in and it made me very sad.  If I can out exercise a bunch of kids that are less than 10 years old at my current size and condition - something is seriously wrong.  My lesson plans suddenly switched from the importance of staying hydrated to the importance of not spending your life in front of a TV or computer and ending up being me in 20 years. I heard after that several kids had opted for water with their snack both days rather than the juice and sweetened drinks that were being offered.  That's a start, I guess.

8.  I'm not one to stand on a soap box and preach about the health of our youth or the "obesity epidemic" but I've now decided I'm going to start.  But first, I have to change some of my current situations.  I will NOT be a hypocrite.  Or anymore of a hypocrite than I'm already being teaching a nutrition class while weighing 250lbs.  I personally believe that kids should be able to enjoy pizza, candy, and soda... but the kids have to learn moderation.  Or at least learn how to get out and exercise every once in a while.  I'm starting to feel that this summer camp class was somehow a sign that I've been given.  Yeah, there I go with my signs again - but it's true.  If nothing else comes out of it but myself getting a swift kick up the rear, and taking some of the wisdom I've learned in to my own classroom, that's good enough - for now.  

9.  I think it's high time I got my ever-growing behind back to the gym.  My gym offers free personal training, and now is the time to start taking advantage...while I have the time.  I can get up early every morning, head to the gym for an hour, and still be back home in time to spend some quality time doing stuff with the kids.  The twenty pounds I want to lose this summer aren't going to magically melt in the heat...no matter how much I try to convince myself they will.

10.  Ten Things Thursday is still really hard.  I want it to be funny, random, and upbeat... but that didn't happen today.  I gave it a fair shot.  But, I failed.  I got out some stuff I wanted to say - but I've somehow lost the ability to be humorous when I write posts like this.  Sorry, Ten Things Thursday, may you rest in peace.

Till next time. ;) 
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Wednesday, June 20, 2012

The Importance of Staying Hydrated - The Class

I've told you all time and time again how long I've wanted to be a teacher, right?  I'm sure if I just posted the question right now and waited for responses - there would be a lot of correct answers. 

Twenty-Five Years.

Since the age of five, I've played, dreamed, and worked towards becoming a teacher.  I've taught, basically, for the last two years.  One year as a student-teacher and the next as a teacher's aide.  I've been nervous.  Not all of my lessons have gone to plan.  But, I can say, not a single lesson or class have I taught where I felt guilt, sadness, pleasure, anger, and happiness all at the same time.

Until yesterday.

My first group of kiddos entered the room.  They sat down.  They were a mixture of 8 and 9 year olds.  I introduced myself by name...and then I introduced myself to them by example.  I had four kids come up front and make a circle around me and link their arms.  I asked them to walk around the room with me.  They weren't allowed to break the chain they had formed, but they had to move in the different ways I asked them to.  I asked them to walk, bend over, move.

After they sat back down, I asked them to explain to the rest of the kids how difficult it was to do the things I asked.  They said it was almost impossible - they had a lot of trouble with it.  I then told them the point to that scenario.

That was me two years ago.

That's how big around I was.  That's how hard it was for me to walk, move, and bend over.  I explained how difficult it was for me to be on my feet for more than a few minutes.  How hard and tiring it was for me to walk around a grocery store.  And how simple tasks such as tying my shoe laces, buying clothes, and walking up a few stairs felt like running a marathon.

It was a powerful introduction.  One that I was pretty proud of.  It was true.  Then, my mind began to wander to how much more I had achieved such as boot camp, running 5ks, buying clothes in a regular department store.  And then, I remembered how far I'd let myself sway off course.  And not just while I was teaching.

For 90 minutes, I taught the kids how important it was to drink lots of water - and the nasty effects that soda, sugar, and fat has on the body.  I took the kids outside for a demonstration on fun exercise and how the body uses water during exercise.  I had fun.  They had fun.  They then got to drink a bottle of water, and then I gave them some Propel water flavorings to take with them to enjoy. 

After the class was over, I had some time to reflect on my teaching.  I felt good about how the class went, but I couldn't shake the feelings I was having.  I was proud I was able to share with them my story.  I was angry that a year ago I was MUCH smaller and much more able to do more activity.  I felt guilty that I had spent so much time telling them how important proper nutrition was, when I didn't follow my own advice.  I kept telling myself that my story would have much more of an impact if they saw me last year...when I was at my lowest weight, was in the best shape I'd ever been, and was living by the example I was setting on them.

I get to do it all over again today.

But, today, I've decided that during the time I get to sit and reflect...I'm going to go and walk, instead.  Why waste 30 minutes sitting when I could be walking around the building and getting some extra exercise?  I've decided that I'm going to drink water all day long and live up to the explanation of how much water I should be drinking. 

I weighed myself this morning.  The scale said 251lbs.  Not sure how I've gained 5lbs this past week.  Especially since I've been eating better and I did do some exercise - such as the yard work I did at my parent's house last week.  You can bet that seeing that number really brought my feelings down. 

I think I'm a hypocrite.

I stand in front of a bunch of kids - weighing 251lbs - and tell them why it's important to eat healthy, drink lots of water, and exercise often.  Especially since I eat like crap, drink hardly any water, and exercise minimally.  Now, anyways.  I can only imagine what was going on in their cute little heads. 

But, if they were thinking what I think they were thinking - they didn't say it out loud.  They did make me prove my claims, though.  They wanted to see me run.  They wanted to see me do a push-up, and a sit-up.  Thankfully for me, my body cooperated.  I was able to do ONE push-up for each class.  I was able to run the length of the field in a sprint.  And I tried with all my might to not show them how tired and winded it made me. 

It made me very angry that I had let my body go so much.

Seeing 251lbs on the scale this morning made me realize that if I lose 20lbs by the time I go back to work, I'll still weigh 230lbs.  That's not good.  And with each day that goes by that the scale keeps increasing, I make that number even higher.  Twenty pounds won't matter that much if I keep doing what I'm doing.  In terms of getting back in to my old clothes and shape, anyhow. 

So, I have a choice.  I bite the bullet, start living by example, lose the damn weight, and go back next year a completely different person.  OR, I keep doing what I'm doing now, keep increasing my weight, and go against everything I believe - the motto of teach as I say not as I do.  I don't like that motto one bit. 

But, only I have the power to make that decision.

Till next time. ;)
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Tuesday, June 19, 2012

True Confessions Tuesday


It's Tuesday, so you all know what that means.  Well, maybe not all of you.  If you're new, you might not know that each Tuesday I get on here and make a list of confessions.  It covers all the things I probably shouldn't have done, things I should have done but didn't, and other stuff that I feel the need to share or say something about.  It goes a little something like this...

I confess that I'm pretty nervous about the summer camp classes I'm teaching this week that start TODAY.  In a little over a couple of hours, actually.  I got all of my notes written on my iPad yesterday, and so I feel a little more organized - but still nervous.  Which is really funny, being that I'm going to be a teacher in a couple of months.  But this is different, because it's 8 different classes of age groups, I'm teaching a topic I've only ever had personal experience with rather than proper training, and I don't know any of the kids or the people I'll be working with.  Except Sanity.  That part makes it all worth it.

I confess that I never in a million years thought I'd be spending four days of my summer break getting up at 5:30am.  I'd almost forgotten what this felt like.  I'm not as tired as I thought I'd be - yet.  But, the house is silent, my coffee smells and tastes wonderful, and my mind is clear.  I now remember why I enjoyed this time so much when I was getting up so early each morning before going to work.

I confess that I'm not wearing any make-up today.  I would never normally go to any job without putting a layer of make-up on, but I figure if I'm going to have kids outside running around in the heat... I better prepare myself to join them.  Me plus heat plus make-up equals one hot mess.  I'm going to go for an all natural look, and hope I can get away with it.  For the sake of the children, they don't need to see what I look like sweaty WITH make-up running down my face.  I think it's comparable with watching a wax figure melt in a fire.  I don't want to give those poor kids nightmares.

I confess that I had a really good session with Therapy Dude and Butter, yesterday.  We confronted a lot of issues.  I was able to let out some of my frustration.  Therapy Dude ensured me that I'm doing all of the right stuff, and it was completely normal to feel the way I've been feeling.  Phew, that's always a relief to hear from a therapist.  He also thinks that Butter's recent behaviors are pretty normal considering the amount of stress we've all been under.  Leave old school, move away for a month, prepare for new school.  It's a lot.  We're going to have a few extra visits this month, just to give Butter more time to work through some of his issues.  And mine.

I confess that I spent several hours yesterday starting the cataloging and packing up of my books ready for my classroom.  It's a lot more time consuming than just throwing the books in to a box.  I have to stamp each book with my name, catalog them in to my online library program, and write down the AR reading level in each book.  After about three hours, I packed just over 100 books.  There's only about 400 more to go.  Good thing I started when I did, I might actually be finished by the time I go back to work.

I confess that I love the fact that Katniss, my kitten, is curled up underneath my desk in her bed.  Only because Hubby said that she wouldn't sleep in a bed.  Nor would she sleep in the bed when it's under my desk.  He made sure to inform me that cats aren't as loyal as dogs are.  She won't follow me around or sleep with me or keep me company when I'm sitting here typing.  Really, Hubby?  Well, here's the proof...



I confess that having Katniss has really helped fill the hole I've felt since Asia left.  I know I haven't said much about that.  Only because it's really been too difficult.  I still have trouble when I get home from somewhere, and she's not there waiting for me by the door.  I know she's doing well with her new family, but it's still hard.  Thankfully, Katniss does all of the things Hubby said she probably wouldn't do - and then some.  One of my favorites being curling up in bed with me at night.  She sleeps exactly how Asia used to - right up against my back.  It's also a huge bonus that Hubby actually likes Katniss.  They get along very well, actually.  Having an animal Hubby likes is huge.

I confess that I ate better yesterday.  Still not perfect, but better.  It's something that will get some encouragement this week while I'm working.  Being that this entire week of camp is dedicated to cooking, eating, and nutrition - I might actually learn a thing or two.  Plus, I've made sure to add 30 minutes of outside activity to the lesson plan.  I'll admit, that part is for my own benefit.  I figure why not kill two birds with one stone.  I want to get in some exercise and I have to teach the kids the importance of staying hydrated while they play.  Might as well come up with a good way to demonstrate that.

I confess that I probably need to get my behind in gear.  I have quite a drive a head of me - and no idea what traffic is going to be like.  I better give myself extra time to get there... which means it's time for confessions to be over.

Till next time. ;)
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Monday, June 18, 2012

Back to the Grind

I've been back home from my parent's house for a couple of days, now.  I've had a little time to adjust and get back in to the swing of things... and now it's time to get back to doing what I do.

This week is going to be pretty busy.

Today, I have to take Butter for his visit with Therapy Dude.  It's my his follow up visit post parent's house to see how I'm he's adjusting.  Therapy Dude blocked out an hour and a half for our visit today.  Does he know me or what?  He knows I'm going to be all up in there talking about my problems and stress.

Unfortunately, though, Butter has a lot to talk about too.  Some of his old behaviors are starting to rear their ugly heads - and that worries me.  I don't know if it's because of the stress of being at my parent's, being out of school, or knowing that he's going to be starting a brand new school in a couple of months.  Probably a mixture of all of it.  Whatever it is, I need to find a way to knock it on the head - now.  I understand that there's a lot going on right now, but we have to find a way to deal.  This momma has no problem admitting when it's hard to cope.

Starting tomorrow, I'm teaching a nutrition class for the rest of the week.  It's half a day each day, two classes per day.  For 90 minutes, I have to keep kids amused by discussing nutrition.  Luckily, I'm teaching the same lesson to 8 different classes. 

I've decided to teach about the importance of staying hydrated.  Sounds thrilling, doesn't it?  But, like I said a few posts ago - I don't want to be too much of a hypocrite.  I don't want to stand in front of a classroom of kids and tell them how important it is to eat healthy, when I am struggling with that myself.  Staying hydrated I do know a thing or two about.  Plus, I can incorporate playing around outside in the heat and following up with some good old H2O.  Yes, I totally plan on using this time for my own benefit of getting some exercise in as well as drinking some water.

Being at home has been weird.  I feel almost like a stranger in my own home.  I don't like the clutter or the mess.  I have some serious work to take care of.  Being at my parent's house somehow brainwashed me in to enjoying a clean house.  Even though I'll never really care for this house, much, I can at least work on getting it decluttered so I can be comfortable.  For now.

I've also realized that now it's time to put up or shut up in terms of getting back on my weight loss horse.  That poor ol' horse.  I sure do get up and down off of him way too much.  He's ready for a nice, long ride.  Not a gallop that only lasts a day or two before he's forgotten again.  Anyone else think it's weird that my weight loss horse is male?  No?  Okie dokie, then. 

I'm still determined to lose 20lbs before I go back to work.  I spent some time, yesterday, rearranging my closet and moving all of my summer clothes to the front and temporarily retiring my winter clothes to the back.  It was good for me to see the clothes I was able to wear last summer, but will have some trouble wearing this summer unless I do something about it.  I have so many cute summer dresses, capris, shorts, etc. that are dying to be worn again.  I could almost hear them talking to me.  "Oh, Joanna, do you remember how great you felt when you put me on last year?  Don't you want to feel that way again?"  Yes, clothes, I do.  I do.

My plan for eating is to go back to eating clean.  I tried doing it twice, and both times I had HUGE results very quickly.  The first time was the week before spring break.  I lost something crazy like 7lbs in a week.  Then, I did it a couple of weeks before school got out and lost 8lbs that time.  The problem is, I didn't stick with it.  I jumped off that horse way too fast...and so the weight crept back on just as fast as I lost it.

One thing I learned about eating clean is it's a do or die program.  After a few days, my body starts to adjust to the good things I'm pumping in.  That leads to a fast weight lost the first couple of weeks, cause it's unloading all the nasty toxins and water weight that's stored.  The problem is, though, if you don't stick with it - the weight comes back hard and fast.  I lost 7lbs in a week eating clean, gained it back in a week of not eating clean.  Lost 8lbs in two weeks, gained it back in two weeks. It goes to show that changing my eating habits has to be a lifelong commitment, or I'll be right back to square one in no time. 

I also learned that eating clean isn't expensive or really that difficult.  I'm just eating more natural products.  I'm avoiding white sugar and flour.  My taste buds really enjoyed the changes I was throwing down my throat.  AND, it's very easy to compromise with a family that isn't really on board with cutting out the foods they love.  If they are eating white bread, I eat multi-grain bread.  If they are eating white rice, I eat brown rice.  If they are eating something else I shouldn't have, I can throw a bag of steamed veggies in the microwave and have those instead.  There's plenty of room for compromise and adjustments.  One thing I love about my family, though, is that if I'm eating healthy - they are willing to eat healthy with me.  That part I have to be thankful for.

I have about 6 or 7 weeks before it's time to go back to work.  I'm not sure when my first day will actually be.  That's plenty of time to lose 20lbs.  If I eat clean the whole time, anyway.  If I had the results I did the first two times, anyhow.  If I really commit myself to working out a couple times a week, it should be easy sailing. 

I know I can do it, because I've done it before.  So, I need to do it again...and this time?  NO GOING BACK!

Till next time. ;)
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Sunday, June 17, 2012

I Didn't Realize Sleeping Till Noon Was Possible

Yes.  The title for today's blog is exactly what I plan on talking about today.  Sleeping.  It will probably end up being a snooze-fest (ba-da-bum), but it's just all I've got.

So, yesterday I went out with P-Momma and we played some bingo.  We didn't win, which sucks big donkey balls - but we had a good time, and that's all that matters.  Although winning a couple hundred dollars would have made it SOOOOO much more fun.

I get home around 11:30 last night, but I didn't go to bed until 1:30am.  Before going to bed, I look at Hubby and say "I'm sleeping until noon tomorrow, just so you know".  We both laugh...cause even though I LOVE sleep - sleeping until noon is something I haven't done since I was a teenager.

When you have kids, it becomes a rite of passage that there are no more days of sleeping late.  If I'm up after 9am, I feel like my whole day has been wasted.  There's just too much to do in a day to waste any time on sleeping in late.  OK, so there are days where I feel like a nap is in order - but even those days are very few and far between.

Anywho, I tell Hubby I'm going to sleep until noon.

I wake up this morning, and look at my clock.  What do my eyes see?  12:02.  Seriously.  I have slept until noon.  What.  The.  Freak?

I figured I'd feel full of energy.  I figured I had to have been tired in order to sleep that long.  I was up most of the night before with Katniss, my kitten, who insisted on playing with me.  But, once I got up I felt sluggish.  My back hurt.  Sleeping this late is not good.

Now, I'm looking at the clock and it's after 1:30pm.  I literally slept half the day away.  And I really don't like it.  I have no energy.  I don't want to do anything.

Plus, today is Father's Day.  I was supposed to get up and make pancakes with Peanut.  That obviously didn't happen.  But, I don't feel guilty.  I went out to eat breakfast on Mother's Day - but that's only because I put my foot down and made it happen.  If I hadn't of suggested it, it wouldn't have happened.  Sorry, Hubby, but that's what you get.  HA!

I did speak to my Dad a little while ago, for 3.2 seconds.  He HATES talking on the phone, so the conversation consisted of "Happy Father's Day! Love you!" with the response, "Thanks, Jo, and you!"  And, that was that. 

Now, I'm thinking about all the stuff I have to do today - and how much time I don't have to do it.  Although, on the flip side, if I don't do it today - I'll do it tomorrow, or the next day, or the next day...and I can go on and on.  Ahh, gotta love being a teacher.  Wow, typing that sounds funny.  Looks funny.  But, I really am a teacher now!

Seriously, though, being at my mom's for an entire month has done something to me.  Apparently, I lost so much sleep while I was there that I slept until noon.. but so much more.  I can't stand looking at the clutter in my house.  I can't stand seeing a bathroom that's in desperate need of some reorganization.  I can't stand seeing my bedroom with clothes that aren't put away or laying on the floor.  It must be cleaned!

So, I guess that's what I need to get my behind to doing.

I apologize for just boring you to tears with this post - told ya it would be a snooze fest.

Till next time. ;)
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Saturday, June 16, 2012

Home Sweet Home


I'm here.  Home.  Finally.

Got here around 10pm last night...and man, it feels good.

I spent all morning, yesterday, recleaning my parent's house.  I wanted it to be perfect, or as close as I could get it for their return.  I was also trying to stay busy so that the time would fly by - and my nerves would stay settled as much as they could.

At 3pm, I finally left for the 1 1/2 hour drive to the airport.  I got there right at 4:30.  The flight was supposed to arrive at 5:15, so my sister's boyfriend and I just walked around a little.  At 4:45, I decided to head back to the arrival gate and wait.

But there wasn't much waiting.  As I stood there staring at the arrival display, their flight showed a change in status - it had already arrived at 4:46pm.

My sister's boyfriend was there as a surprise to my sister.  We came up with a quick plan for where he could hide and decided the best place would be by the luggage turn-style.  I stood staring at the gate from where I was, feeling as if had been years since I'd last seen my parents.  Tears began to well up in my eyes...and I ditched the boyfriend and went back down to the gate.

People started coming through and I waited...and waited...and waited.  Finally, ten minutes later, above the crowd of people, I spotted my dad.  I couldn't hold my emotions anymore, and flung myself at him with a tearful sob.  Shortly behind came my mother, my brother, and my sister.  I gave my mom the hug of a lifetime and new tears sprung to my eyes.  They all laughed.  They thought I was joking when I told them I would cry when I saw them.

We walked down to get their luggage, and to give my sister her surprise.  She was surprised.. but I didn't have time to worry about that.  I was just happy they were all finally home.

The ride back to their house was very nice.  All of my nerves and fears were quickly swept away.  My mom assured me that she wasn't too bothered about the minor problems that had occurred since she'd been away.

We arrived back at their house close to 8pm.  My mom insisted that she get all the cases opened up and dig out the stuff she brought home for the kids.  I would have been happy to wait on that... but she wanted to.  The kids got some cute stuff - and I got something I've wanted for YEARS.  That would be an official Arsenal jersey.  Arsenal is my favorite soccer team.  I'm English, so I like British football.  Arsenal just also happens to be the rival team of my entire family's favorite team...so I knew had to have been hard on my dad to spend money on that jersey.

At a little after 9pm, I decided it was well past time to finally head home.

It was and is so nice to be home.  I didn't get as much sleep as I thought I would being that my kitten has apparently missed me and spent practically all night trying to get me to play with her.  But it sure felt good to be back in my own bed.

This morning, I've spent some time on my computer and went and did some grocery shopping.  Now, I'm waiting for P-Momma to get here so that we can have a girls' night out.   It will be so nice to have a kid-free evening.

Guess I better go unpack all my junk.


Till next time. ;)
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Friday, June 15, 2012

Today Is The Day!!

At 5:44 this morning, I was yanked out of my slumber by a loud crash of thunder. Storms don't bother me one bit - but this one did. All of a sudden I went in to panic mode and thought "NOOOO!! Please don't let the power go out!"

You see, today is the day. The day. My parents come home, and I get to go home. But, I have stuff to do this morning...that requires power...and without it, I am capital S-C-R-E-W-E-D.

You see, being the total procrastinator loving daughter that I am, I held off on doing some stuff until this morning. I want to clean all of the bedding and wash all of the towels. That stuff requires a washer and dryer that work.

Luckily, once I got up and made a pot of coffee - the worst of the storm had passed, and the power was still on.

There was no going back to bed, however, because I was lured to the peace and quiet...and took my cup of coffee and iPad to the front porch to sit and listen to the rain.

And, this is where I've been for the past 2 hours. Just enjoying the coolness, the calmness, and the quiet. Oh, and the coffee.

If I'm being totally honest, I will admit that I will miss this part a little. Sitting on the porch, kids still sleeping, being able to write my blog with a clear mind. Of course, this part of the day doesn't usually last long... but I'll miss it all the same.

I do have a deck at my house. One that I could do the exact same thing on each and every day...maybe something I'll consider.

I also got some good news this morning. A few days ago, I pulled my credit report and noticed that there were some things on there I wasn't responsible for. It was back from 2006 when I was in a car wreck, and the other insurance company was supposed to pay for my medical bills. I guess they didn't. So, I disputed them. It's only been 3 days since I did it, and I got the notice this morning that my investigation had already been completed. And? All of the medical bills are gone! $1000 of bad credit gone from my credit file in 3 days. That's AWESOME!! Especially with the subject of house buying in the midst.

So, I'm hoping that was a sign that today is going to be a good day.

It's stupid, but I'm nervous about my parents coming home today. I thought I'd be a lot more excited... but I think it's more nerves than excitement. The strong desire to always wanting to please my parents is niggling at me now. Will they be OK with some of the minor problems that have come up while they've been away? Is there house clean enough? Have I done everything that I'm supposed to?

Despite the fact that Therapy Dude gave me a stern talking to about my obsessive desire to please my parents, and forgetting what I've done and sacrificed on their behalf so that they could have this vacation, I can't help buy worry a lot little.

I can't help it. It's something that's been engrained in to me, I guess. I'm the oldest child, so I feel that it's my responsibility to do whatever my parents ask. No isn't a word I use with them. And then, even when I do what they ask - I never think I've done it well enough. It's stupid. My parents haven't really given me reason to feel this way - but I feel it, anyway.

I'm 30 years old, and still worry about getting in to trouble with my parents. Silly and pathetic - but, maybe this time tomorrow I won't be worried anymore.

Regardless how I'm feeling, today is the day they come home...the day I've been waiting 4 very long weeks for. How can I not be happy about that? I never thought I'd admit to missing my house so much - the house I really don't like and want to move out of. But, I realize that it's not the house I miss - it's my home. Being in my house. Being with my family, my Hubby. Not having to worry about a check-list of responsibilities. That's what I've really missed.

And I have something to look forward to tomorrow. An afternoon/evening kid free. I'm going out, I'm going to have some fun, I'm going relax and soak in the few hours of freedom.

And it will be one of several I plan on having over the course of next 6 weeks before I go back to work. I've earned it - despite all my nerves and feelings. At the end of the day, I've spent the last 4 weeks with very minimal adult interaction. I need a break. I deserve a break.

Just a few more hours.

Till next time. ;)

Thursday, June 14, 2012

Gonna Try Ten Things Thursday...

So, you all know how much I like doing Draz's Bring Your Own Crazy, right? I do it pretty much every week. Not always on Fridays - when Draz does it - but eventually, I get around to it.

For the past few weeks, I've been reading another fun blog post thing she's been doing called Ten Things Thursday.

It's simple. I just come up with 10 random things to talk about. I'm pretty sure mine won't be near as good as Draz's.. but I decided to give it a shot.

1. How does holding on to a long, metal object for a couple of hours cause SOOO much pain to my arms? I mean, seriously. I held up a weed-eater for two hours, and it feels like I've been hurling 85lb weights around. I didn't feel this much pain when I did boot camp - and that was major exercise stuff. I leisurely walk around a yard for a couple of hours swinging around a metal stick that has the power to whack down weeds...and I am in more pain than I've ever been doing any form of exercise. Ridic!

2. I'm getting a little nervous about teaching the nutrition class I'm teaching for 4 days next week. I decided to teach the kiddos about the importance of staying hydrated - and that meaning drinking water, not soda. Each class is 90 minutes long. That's a long time to go on and on about drinking water. Plus, let's not forget that I'll be the biggest hypocrite in the world by preaching to these kids about drinking water - when I've been slacking off drinking any water.

3. I miss my mommy! There, I said it. And you can go ahead and read that in a whiney, three year old voice - cause that's exactly how it was intended to be taken. This past month has really made me realize how much I rely on my mom to be my ear when I need someone to talk to. OK, everything I've had to whine about the past month has been because I'm staying at her house... but not being able to pick up the phone and call her when I need her is hard. I know that when she walks through the gate at the airport tomorrow afternoon, I'm going to cry. Like a big, baby. Let's not forget my dad...I've missed him, too. He's just not much of a phone talker.

4. I want to know how it's possible for a 10 year old boy to destroy 10 pairs of shoes in a year. No lie. In the last three months he's pulled the soles off of 2 pairs of tennis shoes. Not cheap tennis shoes, either. Every single pair is the same - within a few weeks the soles are ripped off. I know it's because he takes them off without untying them. I'm so tired of buying shoes - and I just don't know how to break him of it short of making him walk around bare foot.

5. I made the best spaghetti last night for dinner. OK, so it was sauce that you buy in a jar - but it was the best I've tried. It was Bertolli - and it was made with white wine. I cooked it up with ground beef, onions, and mushrooms. I then made garlic bread. So delicious. Yeah, I know it was probably full of calories - but I didn't go crazy. While I'm still not a fan of cooking - I was proud of that creation.

6. I'm curious to see how my Mommy Homemaker attitude lasts once I go home. Once I'm not cooking anymore, or I'm actually able to use a dishwasher... will I still do any of that stuff? Will I still wash dishes just because they are in the sink and need to be cleaned? Will I go to so much trouble to keep the house picked up? My bets are on a big, fat no - but you never know. Maybe I've reawakened a part of me that want's to be a good mommy that takes care of the house. Don't laugh too much as you read that last statement, m'kay?

7. DirecTV is by far the best satellite company. And I'm so glad we have DirecTV at my house - and no, I have not been paid to say that...although, I'm open for offers DirecTV! My parents have Dish Network, and I freaking hate it. The DVR won't let you watch anything else while something is recording. Also, if I'm watching something on the DVR and then go back to the channel the TV was on - it won't let me rewind the TV. My DirecTV does. We can record two things in the living room and two things in the bedroom at the same time. I can watch a show from my DVR, then go back to live TV and rewind it. It's so much better. I can't wait to get back to my TV.

8. I am definitely no farm girl. I'm a city girl at heart, despite living in BFE. But, I have to admit, that I've kinda enjoyed taking care of my brother's mini-farm. I go out and feed chickens and goats and ducks...and it's fun. A little fun. Not enough to make me start buying farm animals - but enough to make me appreciate the hard work he puts in to keeping up with it all. I'm gonna miss them smelly animals - a little - once I'm gone.

9. It is not healthy for a 30 year old woman to spend so long without adult interaction. Physical or verbal. Four weeks feels like four years. I feel like I'm on a reality show that tests the limits of a person's mental stability by sticking them out in the middle of nowhere with 6, then 5, then 4 kids...with no other adults. I will come out victorious - but holy mother effers, it's hard work. I know that Peanut has had enough of being my conversation buddy - cause I just got no one else to talk to. *Sniff*

10. I've realized that coming up with 10 random things to talk about is hard. I feel like it's stepping on the line of True Confessions Tuesday. I know, not to sound like a broken record, that my current living situation is what is causing my mental block of pulling stuff out of a hat to talk about. Maybe in a couple of weeks - when I've had my life back for a little while - a post like this won't be so hard. I'm sure it will be a lot of classroom prep talk, summer swimming, and how f'in awesome it is to be back in my own bed... but that stuff is interesting, right?

This is the part where I say if you want to try Ten Things Thursday, that you should go back to your blog and do that. I would advise reading Draz's version - it's so much better. But, this was fun.

Till next time. ;)

Wednesday, June 13, 2012

I Can Eat For Two Hours AND Lose Weight? WHAAAATTT??

Oh yes. Believe it. I have found a way to eat for two hours...with just a little break in the middle...and burn a ton of calories.

In fact, the more I ate...the more I sweated...the more I could feel my body aching... the more I could feel the weight melting away.

OK, so I guess I have to fess up about what it was that I was eating.

Wanna know?

Weeds.

No. I was not eating the weeds, as in putting them in my mouth and swallowing. Don't go rushing outside and grabbing handfuls of plants and start shoveling them in your mouth. You'll end up with a nasty taste in your mouth for nothing.

I was Weed-Eating. As in, with a weed-eater.

This is very sad for me to admit, but I have NEVER used a weed eater before today. Not once. I had no idea how heavy they were, how hard it was to maneuver one, and how great it felt to drip with sweat just by chopping down ugly weeds.

I had no idea that weed-eating would be so good for stress. As I whacked at the weeds, I could feel the stress melt away as the sweat dripped off of me. I actually really enjoyed it.

I'm loving discovering new exercise that takes me out of my comfort zone.

After I used the weed-eater for two hours, I went and push mowed for an hour. Another sad truth, but I've never used one of those before, either. I know, I must be a spoiled princess... but had I known how enjoyable it all was? I would have been doing it for years.

I'm sure Hubby is going to be thrilled to hear how much I want to get out and do some yard work when I get home.

So, changing the subject a little - it's Wednesday, which means it's weigh in day. Unfortunately, there was no change on the scale this morning.

I would rather have no change than a gain. I would have liked to see a little bit of a loss - but I am still working out a lot of kinks with my eating. I think if I stay on track this week, the scale should drop a little by next week.

My body is aching - and I love it. My arms ache, my legs ache.

There's just two more days until my parents come home. I just want everything to go smoothly between now and then. I want their house to be clean and perfect for them. That means plenty of exercise for me. I just know that I'm going to cry like a baby when I see my parents walk through the gate at the airport. I'm going to cry because I'm happy to see them, but also because it means I can finally go home.

OK, that's it for me today. My fingers even hurt...so I'm done with typing.

Till next time. ;)