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Yet Another Doctor…

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…has told me that I need to watch my weight.  1500 to 1700 calories per day.  Eat every 3 hours; meal –> snack –> meal –> snack –> meal –> snack.  Snacks can’t be carbs; recommended that they be dairy (which is so frustrating, because everyone else tells me to lay off the dairy).  Can’t they just all learn about this stuff from the same book and get on board? Ugh.

I have been in a bit of a carb-induced coma recently.  This morning is no different (I did have a bagel this morning as a final send-off — combined that with a blackberry / greek yogurt / cranberry juice smoothie [which needed a lot of sweetening with some Agave nectar]).

Working on getting myself back on track, back to tracking my food, back to exercising 5 of 7 days.  I really need to start “booking” the exercise on my calendar, including swimming.  As much as I hate the hubby’s new schedule (1 pm to midnight), it would allow me to go to swimming from 7 to 8 PM…

Ugh.  Will I ever just “learn” not to let myself unlearn everything that I’ve done?  Will I ever just figure out how to eat like a “normal” person (or what my normal should look like)?

What I’m Up to…

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Haven’t blogged in a while — I just don’t feel like I have all that much going on that would be interesting…  Sorry.

I haven’t been working out this week — been feeling a bit off, and not wanting to push it. Tonight I was supposed to have a facial & a massage, but my chiropractor cancelled the massage. Which is really too bad because I’ve got some crazy muscle thing going on in my right leg. If I’m not working out, how could I hurt it? Did I strain it in my sleep?!? Still excited about the facial though; I NEED my brows waxed!  I’m seriously like a Chubaka over here. 

The rest of the night I’ll be baking cookies and cupcakes for a baby shower that I’m throwing on Saturday afternoon. Should be a lot of fun, but I’d just like to get this ticked off the list. Baking today, frosting tomorrow. Also need to pick up the last part of the gift, buy the groceries, and pull together some of the serving dishes that I’m taking to the friend’s house who was gracious enough to offer her beautiful home! I absolutely love entertaining, and really wanted to do this at our house.  BUT, we’re supposed to be in the middle of a kitchen renovation.  Unfortuantely, that reno hasn’t started (just took measurements and designed the kitchen cabinets on Monday, so I don’t even really know when we’re actually starting…).

Oh! And I got all crafty last night and made some fabric bunting for a shower decoration that I hope they’ll be able to use to decorate the nursery too. Yay for actually doing something that I found on Pinterest!

Other baby shower food will include a fruit salad, a veggie platter (with dips served in hollowed out bell peppers — fancy! — and some hot appetizers courtesy of Trader Joe’s. The cookies will be “baby stuff” shaped, and I’ll package those as favors. The cupcakes are the cake — I’m planning on chocolate with green and blue frosting (the “theme” colors are green, brown & blue). But, we’ll see… May end up with white frosting & sprinkles… We’re also having a champagne/sparkling cider “bar” with pureed mango and strawberries as mix-ins, as well as punch, and mint/lemon/cucumber water.  Again, most of this (except the fruit salad, cupcakes, cookies, and TJ’s apps are ideas courtesy of Pinterest).  Seriously, I’m addicted.

Will take a bunch of decor pictures on Saturday so you can see what it all looks like when it comes together.  I’m a bit nervous for it, actually.  There are 3 of us throwing the shower — and I’m probably the one most into the design element.  However, since it’s at the other lady’s house, we’re using her dishes, etc. (trying to be green & avoid paper plates & plastic forks as much as possible).  The only issue is that they’re all really fancy crystal, etc., and I was really hoping that it would be a bit more modern.  She also has a bunch of decorations that she bought for other baby showers, and wants to use — and they don’t really go with the modern jungle theme that I’d set about using (before she volunteered to help).  I know.  I KNOW!  I need to get over this.  It’s crazy.  She’s 0pening her home, and of course we’d use the crystal punch bowl instead of me bringing mine, or me bringing my plain white clean-lined plates and serving trays.  That’d be insane.  INSANE.  I get it.  But it’s not going to be as cohesive as I’d like.  Of course, the momma-to-be won’t even notice, or care at all, and that’s what really matters, right?!?  🙂

Weight is holding steady at 197/198.  I’m OK with that.  I’m eating well, working out regularly (except for this week), and I’m pretty sure that I look good!  🙂  I ran into my nutritionist at the cafeteria a few days ago, and even she mentioned that I was looking “svelte”.  As long as I can keep my fingers out of the cupcake batter tonight, that should continue!

Eatful in Seattle

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Eatful.  Is that even a thing?  I don’t think so.  But we were certainly not Eat-less…  So to continue this nonsensical link to some 80s movie, I’m saying eatful IS indeed a thing.

Basically, we spent our weekend in Seattle eating.  (Why, yes.  It has taken me over a week to post this.  Yikes.)

Many of our vacations revolve around food, and where we’re going, and things like breakfast dessert.  Serious.  Most of those happen in Vegas, but apparently Seattle is a favorite foodie location.

Friday

  • Lunch – random pho restaurant.  I don’t even know what town we were in.  I was on the lookout for a Starbucks (not hard to find, by the way) but the hubby wanted something else.  Because it was Friday he either needed fish or vegetarian, so he thought it would be easy to find something at this Vietnamese place.  Wow, was it good!  I had a vermicelli bowl with chicken and fried egg rolls, he had a fish stew pho, and we shared a tofu ban mi.  That sandwich was SO good, y’all!  I dreamt of the bread from that sandwich for days.  Serious.
  • Dinner – Elliott’s Oyster House.  We’ve been here a few times – it’s one of the hubby’s favorite restaurants.  It’s not one of mine.  Both things I’ve had in the past were not good.  This time, though, it redeemed itself.  We started with calimari – lightly fried, you could still taste the perfectly cooked calimari.  Yum.  Hubby had some fantastic Alder smoked salmon, and I ordered the main dish of crab cakes.  In hindsight, I should have gotten the salmon too.  The crab cakes were good, but a bit weird.  They were like a crab salad in the middle – still creamy with mayo.  I really like it when my crab cakes are only crab.  But they were still good.  We skipped dessert.

Saturday

  • Breakfast – Local 360.  (I don’t really know why, but they have a .0rg web address — cool!)  This place is cool.  As much food as possible is sourced from within 360 miles of Seattle.  We started out with breakfast appetizer:

PB & J Bon bons. You're jealous. Just admit it.

I ordered a sensible meal of scrambled eggs with roasted potatoes.  They weren’t anything special, but I wasn’t really expecting much from them — I just really wanted some plain eggs.  (After a breakfast appetizer of fried peanut butter, it’s usually better not to go too crazy).  That said, check out the hubby’s breakfast:

Chicken and Waffles, y'all!

  • We skipped lunch, since brunch was so late, but I stopped and picked up a box of granola bars and an iced decaf coffee at a grocery store between the wedding & the reception.
  • Dinner – Salty’s on Alki for the wedding reception.  Dinner was good – a large buffet.  The best were the shrimp scampi and the clam chowder.   The piece de resistance was not from the  restaurant, but was a marionberry wedding cake.  Mmmm, good stuff.

YAY for wedding cake

Sunday

  • Breakfast – Top Pot Doughnuts.  This is an amazing doughnut shop near our hotel
  • Lunch – Pike Place Chowder.  Shared a bread bowl of clam chowder.  I love this place.  So good.
  • Mid-afternoon outing – Freemont Brewing Company.  This was so odd…  Very odd.  There was a child’s birthday party going on in the bar.  I couldn’t decide at first if it was awesome or crazy.  I decided after watching the very chill parents, with microbrews in their hands, and the very happy kiddos, eating pizza and birthday cake, that this was GENIUS.  We just need to find a brewery that allows this here.  (Oh, and have a kiddo.  Small things…)  On that vein, since I was DD, they gave me (free!) fancy bottled rootbeer and ginger beer (non-acho!) Woot!
  • Dinner – Local 360.  Like I said, this was one of our favorite places.  I had the mussels with a side of fries.  And a side of mac and cheese.  The mussels were huge, and tasty, the fries were a bit over-fried (but the hubby loved them) and the mac and cheese was delish.  I should have just gotten the mac & cheese for myself.  Honestly?  I loved this meal so much that I have NO idea what the hubby got.  Sorry!

Monday

  • Breakfast appetizer – Top Pot Doughnuts.  Mmmmm.
  • Brunch – Dim Sum at Golden Harbor in Chinatown.  We walked all the way here from our hotel, and worked up quite a sweat (and appetite!).  We got a bunch of standard dim-sum dishes – but the best were the steamed shrimp & cilantro dumplings.  These were awesome.  I really wanted another dish of them, but we’d stuffed ourselves with shrimp balls and pork buns and lotus pods and taro dumplings.  I could not stuff another dumpling in.  So sad.
  • Mid-afternoon snack:  Elysian Brewing Company.  I drank some ginger ale, and Matt enjoyed their 2 beer samplers.  We noshed on the hummus, babaganoush, olive, pepper & feta plate.  I think it was called the “Oasis Plate”.  It was an oasis of yumminess.
  • Dinner – Serious Pie:  Salad of mixed greens with radishes and a sausage pizza.  Mmmm, pizza.

Tuesday

  • Brunch – Portage Bay Cafe.  This one was a spot-on recommendation from one of my readers.  Hi Alyssa!  This was quite possibly the best meal that we had the whole trip.  I got to doctor up my own meal

    Challa French toast

with the fantastic toppings bar!  I got the raspberries, blackberries, and cranberries to top 1 slice each, then topped the whole thing with slivered almonds and whipped cream and strawberries on the size.  Holy yum.

The toppings bar was awesome. Awesome, I say!

But really, the best thing I ate all weekend was the hubby’s Migas.  So super good.  He added the chorizo, and it was amazing.  A.maz.ing.  This picture doesn’t look like much, but it is.  Oh, it is.

Seriously, the best thing I ate this weekend.

At the airport on the way home, I wanted to grab the grilled fish tacos, but they were out of the fish, so I ended up with a pizza.  Meh.  Nothing to get too excited about.

But those migas, kids.  Those you should be VERY excited about!

Here comes the sun…

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Oh.  Wait.  No.  I’m actually going to Seattle.  Where it feels like 42* and is about a 100% chance of rain every day that we’ll be there.  Cute rain boots?  Check.  Cute umbrella?  Check.  Appropriate shoes?  Nope.

We’re headed up there for a wedding of a friend that I work with.  And I honestly don’t own any dress up shoes that go with a fancy “attend a wedding” dress that aren’t open-toed.  How did that happen?!?  So, my feet are going to freeze.  Unless I decide to rock the cute rain boot + fancy “attend a wedding” dress combo.  That could work.

Unfortunately, we don’t have many grand plans for the trip.  We’ll be there for 4 nights (returning on Tuesday), and really only know that we’re going to the wedding tomorrow.  Anyone have any great tips for Seattle?  We’ve been a few times before, so looking for those little hole in the wall places, even outside of town would be fine.  Also, restaurant recommendations, please?  The only two places we know that we’re going is Alki’s (for the wedding reception) and Stika & Spruce, an amazing restaurant that we went to last time we were there for my husband’s work.  Everything is local, fresh & whole.  Menu changes all the time – so it’s just written on a chalk board.  It’s fantastic!

I’ve got 2 sets of workout clothes, and really need to pack some bars to make sure that I don’t just keep stopping in coffee shops for muffins when I get hungry!  Flight leaves in less than 3 hours, so I’d better bust a move!

To tell or Not to tell…

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Over the 2 weeks or so, I’ve had at least 3 people ask me (sometimes alone, sometimes in a group) when we’re going to have children.  I’m not an overly emotional person (kind of a robot, sometimes, actually).  But this question always gets me.  What am I supposed to say? 

For people that I know well, I have decided that I am going to tell them that we’re working on it.  I want to avoid the constant questioning eyes “Are you pregnant today?”  “What about today?”, but if someone is a good friend, I’ve decided that it’s easier to tell them what’s going on, than to lie or be subversive.

For people that I don’t know well, I’m a bit stuck.  I sometimes respond with a sing-songy “Someday”, or “When the time is right”.  

When I’m on my hormone medications, though… all bets are off.  My new favorite response is, “When God feels it’s time” or the snarkier, “Well, it’s not really up to me at this point.”  People usually catch my drift, then move along.  

This weekend I was at a bridal shower, and the conversation turned to babies.  I successfully navigated through the conversation and thought I was free & clear.  Until I got up to get some water, and the hostess turned to me, and asked, “So, Lara, when are you going to have kids?”  EVERYONE in the room just looked at me.  And I really only know the bride well; I’m friendly with the hostess, but everyone else was new to me.  The response was one of those, “Well, um, it’s not really up to us at this point, so we’re just waiting”.  That shut EVERYBODY up.  Topic was officially closed.  Dun, dun…

A friend asked me yesterday about this, and I made the decision to tell her.  I wouldn’t consider her a good friend, but I just wasn’t in the mood to be coy about it.  So I spilled the beans.  I should have thought more about this – she’s not overly compassionate, and her response just kind of angered me.  What was the response?  None.  None at all.  I told her that this is one of the hardest things I’ve ever gone through, and she flipped the conversation to start talking about her soon-to-be mother-in-law.  Why am I friends with people like this?  Ugh.  Time to purge, I think…  Anywhoo…

I did finally talk to my mom about it last night.  Yes.  All my friends knew before my mom.  I just didn’t want her to worry, you know?  But I decided that it would be easier if I could tell her everything that’s going on in my life — hormone shots and all.  She told me that she and my dad had a hard time conceiving, and had to take her temperature for “a really long time”, but they never had any medical work-ups done.  My brother is now 37 years old, so that makes sense to me.  She was 31 when he was born (my dad was 42), so I’m sure that the pressure that they got from family was excruciating.  She has never once pressured me for a grandchild — which I’m sure is because her parents or my dad’s parents kept that kind of stuff coming.  My mom is SO self-aware, and would never want to say anything that would be hurtful to me.  

Back in August we were planning my dad’s 80th birthday for November.  The family decided that they wanted to go skiing in February of this year.  At that time, I decided that I should mention that I would hopefully not be allowed to ski because we were hoping to start a family.  We ended up not going skiing, and I ended up not pregnant, but my parents have never asked me about it (although I’m sure my mom was wondering!).

Public Service Announcement:  Unless someone has already talked to you about starting to try to have kids, don’t ask them if they want to have kids.  Make no assumptions.  If someone opens up to you, listen.  Talk to them about it.  But don’t make that the only thing you talk about.  Let them know that you’re always willing to listen, but that you don’t want to make that person feel like it’s the only thing going on in their life.  

I’m Still Here…

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Yes, I’ve said that before.  And I will probably say it again.  Things are crazy in the TresLaLa world, and I really didn’t know how to start when I got back from the UK.  But, I’ve been away for too long, and need to start getting everything out there again!

So, here’s what’s up with me:

That was quite the trip.  Started out terribly (Virgin cancelled my flight! AND I got my period 5 days early!), but ended really well.  We saw SO much of the country – but really I kind of felt that I didn’t see much of anything.  We were always running from one place to the next!  Getting my period did allow me to have some drinky-poos, though…  Yay for cask beer and vodka tonics!

Food wise, I’ve really fallen down.  January was such an amazing month for me. I was in a really good place mentally, and in a really good place with exercise and food.  Travelling for 15 days really did a number on my workouts, and full English breakfasts (even if they were mostly vegetarian) are not something that anyone should sustain for that amount of time.  Today I committed to eating on plan – and figured what better way to kick this off than to start blogging again.  Kind of a way to re-commit everything.

I even started biting my fingernails again.  I bought an OPI “shellac” manicure through a local deal site that expires on 30 April.  So I have Just under 6 weeks to get back to real nails!  I can do this!

Work has been going really well.  Busy, but good.  I got a really good review, with a nice raise and an even nicer bonus.  Love that.  That bonus is going to help us do a bunch of projects around the house.

Speaking of, we’re renovating our house.  It’s a gigantic project, and we just finished interviewing 3 contractors (all of whom come highly recommended by various people).  Just waiting on those estimates to come through so that we can start.  We designed the kitchen cabinets yesterday at Home Depot — and I think we’ve decided that we’re leaning towards having the cabinets custom-made.  Apparently they’ll be less expensive than the Kraft Maid brand?!?  I was super surprised to hear that…

In addition to the kitchen, we’re replacing about 90% of the flooring in the house (leaving one bedroom’s carpet, but replacing the other guest bedroom’s carpet, the office & the living room, then replacing the tile in 2 of the bathrooms [maybe 3?], and then everything else (including our bedroom) will have engineered hard woods.

On top of all that, we need to renovate at least 1 of the bathrooms (possibly 2).  Those we’ll probably not be able to do with the contractor now – but we might have them tear the current stuff out, so that we can work on them kind of piecemeal when we have time.  We have a buddy who really wanted to help us do everything, but I know my limitations (and especially those of my hubby & his time), and I realized that it wasn’t worth it for us to even attempt our own kitchen.  Guest bathrooms are another story (there would always be another bathroom that could be used!).

Oh, and we’re redoing our pool.  Why, yes.  We are crazy.  But it’s going to look awesome!  I even dreamed about the pool tile last night (and we’re the furthest behind in this project – the hubby’s in charge of finding and hiring the contractor for that…)

And, finishing up the update on my life is the fact that I’m still not pregnant.  Or, at least, I don’t know if I am or not.  While on my trip to the UK, I was taking birth control pills so that we could be the ones determining my cycle.  Once we got back, the hubby was leaving in a week for his parents’ house in Florida, so all in all, I was on the pill for 3 weeks in February.  Started up again on a drug similar to Clomid (an estrogen blocker), but that’s known for growing the lining of the uterus a bit more (mine had been thin the previous cycle.  Ultrasounds revealed that my eggs weren’t maturing as quickly as they’d like, so I started on Brevelle (an injectable fertility medication – $125 per day!!!).  5 days of that, plus acupuncture twice a week leading up to ovulation, and I *think* I had a LH surge (via LH predictor kit) on Sunday morning – 11 March.  That afternoon I gave myself an injection of HCG (just in case I didn’t really ovulate, since I couldn’t recreate the LH surge on other tests), and in the afternoon on 12 March I had an IUI (intra-uterine insemination).  Implantation was due on Saturday (acupuncture on Friday afternoon, and lots of pineapple!).  So now we’re just waiting.  I can take a pregnancy test on Monday (26 March).  If positive, I have a blood test.  If I get my period or it’s negative, we start on another round of Clomid, injectables (if needed) and insemination.  My doctor has recommended that we go straight into in-vitro fertilization (IVF), but at $10 to 12,000, we’re not willing to go down that route just yet…  What an emotional roller coaster.  The medications have made me more than a bit crazy – and cause hot flashes!  NOW I know what my mother was talking about!

A few posts that you can look forward to:

  • Full details on the UK trip, with pictures!
  • Updates on food & exercise!
  • Updates on the nail biting situation!
  • Many, many updates on the renovation progress, with pictures!
  • What I’m hoping will be FEW updates on fertility and MANY updates on how wonderful it is to be pregnant!

Cheers!

And… I’m up.

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I have not been sleeping.  Well, I have haven’t been sleeping well.  Or much.  Not sure why – except that this week has been especially crazy at work, and I’m prepping for this trip to the UK that I am not.at.all. ready for.  At this point, my bags are packed (except for those 1,000 things that I keep remembering to bring that I then immediately forget, cursing myself for not writing it down…  but that’s to be expected).  The car will pick me up at home at 2:30 PM today to head to the airport.  Between now & then I need to:

  • Book a rental car for the vacation portion of the trip
  • Choose a hotel in Bath
  • Call my bank to let them know that we’ll be in the UK & please don’t put our credit cards on hold while you call home trying to “verify charges”
  • Make a photo book (or at least transfer like 1000 pictures from my Mac to my work computer so I can make the photo book in the UK in all my free time — curses, Travelzoo Deals!)
  • Download a few new albums and sync my iPhone
  • Go to a personal training session
  • Finish the laundry
  • Confirm the pet sitter, prep her room & pay her

What do I want to do?

  • Drink coffee, while lazily watching some mindless TV (Grey’s Anatomy would be a good choice)
  • Take my dogs to the dog park

Ugh.

I had hoped to do a really nice post on our trip to the UK, and all the fun stuff that we have planned.  Unfortunately, I haven’t planned much of anything!  My hubby’s had to take that on, but he’s a bit reluctant to “pull the trigger” on hotels, etc. until I’ve approved them (love that!).  Here’s what I know so far.  If you have any suggestions within a reasonable price range, toss ’em my way!

  • Today – 4 Feb:  Depart LAX for LHR via Virgin Atlantic Upper Class (WOOT!!!  Seriously.  WOOT!)  I’m not always in agreement with my company’s travel policy.  It does make sense if you’re going to go straight into work, that you should be able to get a good night’s sleep.  But I’m torn, because it’s so freaking expensive.  But it is awesome.  Seriously awesome.  Why is Virgin Atlantic Upper Class to London awesome?  Funny you should ask:
    • They pick you up in a sedan or limo.  At home.  For free.  I live about an hour from LAX, and they’ll be here at 2:30, ready to take me on my merry way.  Am I a rockstar?  No.  Do I feel like one?  Yup.
    • The seats lie all the way down.  And then I’m wearing Virgin Atlantic pajamas (which are not difficult to take with you on accident, by the way).  And covered with a down comforter.  ON A PLANE.
    • They have estheticians ON BOARD to give you spa services.  WHA?!?  Yep – I got a hand/arm massage last time.
    • In London, they’ll take me to my hotel.  For free.
    • They’d then pick me up again to take me to the airport, if I wanted (but we don’t need it…)
    • The Upper Class lounge in London is psychedelic, baby.  It’s like Austin Powers threw up on itself, but then gave you free food & drinks.  And spa services.  Need a haircut?  Sure.  A facial?  Why not?  A massage?  They’re FREE!
    • And then the whole plane ride happens again, and I’m in my little cocoon, wearing a 2nd new pair of pajamas.
    • They pick me up, with one of those little signs with my name on it, and take me home.  Sa-weet!
    • All for the low, low price of…  well, more than I’d ever pay for a flight on my own.
  • Tomorrow (5 Feb) ~3 PM:  Arrive at The Cavendish Hotel in London – our home base for the next 5 nights.  Dinner at some fancy restaurant that has a bunch of weird animal parts on the menu.  (Pray for a vegetarian special, people.  I can’t do a bunch of tripe and hooves. Can.Not.Do.It.  Yes, I realize that I call myself a foodie, but that is just crossing the line.  Line –> Over it.)
  • Monday through Thursday – 6 through 9 Feb:  Work, work, work.  Seriously.  My days are booked solid from 9 AM to 6 PM.  SOLID.  Insanity.  And I’ve got a bazillion things to do other than the meetings that are scheduled.  There may not be much sleep in London.  (Note to self:  PACK AmbienCR!)
  • Thursday the hubby arrives (he’s flying on American using frequent flier miles, in Coach.  He is not amused by my recount of what my flight will be like).  He’ll go to the hotel, wander a bit, then we’ll meet up with my colleagues for dinner
  • Friday – 10 Feb:  Check out of the Cavendish, and head over to our new home base in London for the next 2 nights – the Park Hotel Belgravia. Super excited about this hotel – about 1/2 the price of the Cavendish, but seems REALLY nice in a great area.  I hope we’re not disappointed!
    • Speaking of being disappointed, have you seen this YouTube clip?  Hercules is awesome.  Dis-a-POINTED!
  • Friday through Sunday AM (10 – 12 Feb):  Wander London, see a show if we can get cheap tickets, eat, drink & be merry.  Go on the London Eye (yes it’s touristy, I know…) and a cruise of the Thames River.  Buy something (perchance a Longchamps bag?) at Harrods (more likely:  a coffee).  Have a proper tea.  See the Tower of London.  Go to the market on Saturday morning.
  • Sunday – 12 Feb:  Pick up automatic rental car from somewhere in London (to be determined, see the to-do list above).  Depart for Bath, stopping a few times along the way – specifically at Stonehenge.  (I’ve already been there, and wasn’t super impressed, but Matt REALLY wants to go, so we go!)  We don’t yet have a hotel in Bath (see list above).  Wander the old Roman Bath and then find the modern-day spa.  Relax.
  • Monday – 13 Feb:  Travel on our merry way to Stratford-upon-Avon, home of William Shakespeare.  Check into The Virginia Lodge Guest House, and wander.  The Taming of the Shrew is on for that night – which means I need to read that on the plane.  Which means I need to add buying it for my Nook to my list.  Gaaah!
  • Tuesday – 14 Feb:  Make our way to York (no hotel yet) for 2 nights.  Wander.
  • Thursday – 15 Feb:  Make our way to Edinburgh, potentially driving the Scottish highlands that day (long day in the car, but we could then get rid of the car a few days earlier).
  • Thursday – Sunday (15 – 19 Feb):  Stay in Edinburgh.  Visit the Castle.  Go on the Literary Pub Tour and a Haunted Edinburgh Tour.  Let the hubby taste some whiskey and haggis.  Wander the cobblestone streets.
  • Sunday – 19 Feb:  Flight at O-dark thirty to London, then change airlines for the flights home.  I’m on VA again, and the hubby is on AA again.  I’ll get in 30 minutes before him, and my driver isn’t allowed to wait for him, so he’s hitching a ride with another friend who is coming home from another business trip

Phew.  I’m tired just thinking about it.  Now, time to get on that to-do list!

Cheerio!

Eeek!

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I’m kind of nervous (not sure why)…

I just ordered a BodyMedia Fit Link armband!  From Costco for $179 with express shipping (so that I make sure that I get it before I leave for the UK).  It’s the one that syncs with my iPhone.  I have been thinking about it for a really long time, and finally bit the bullet.  I think I’m nervous because doing this kind of brings me into the No Excuses zone.

Aaack.  Just had a bit of a freak out about the price (since I always MUST get the best deal), but at Costco it’s $179 with a 12-month subscription, whereas on Amazon it’s $140 with a 3 month subscription (and then to get 9 more months it’s an additional $62), so that’s $202.  Woot – look at me, saving money!

One thing that peeves me:  The actual BodyMedia website has it for $199 with a 3 month subscription.  I HATE when companies make it MORE expensive to buy directly from them.  Why?!?  It seriously doesn’t make good business sense.

Anywhoozles…  I’ll wear it while in the UK, and will give full reports on what I think of this gadget of mine!

Picture Pages…

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… time to grab your pens & your pencils!

Not sure where that came from.  Anywhoo…

A few months ago, I purchased a deal online that would allow me to have 1,000 of my photos scanned, and put onto a CD.  Digitizing my ’80s and ’90s?  Whaaa? That is awesome.  Imagine all the Facebook trauma I could unleash.

So I started by pulling out all of my photo albums.  I have pictures of me as a 5-year old, posing in front of a family friend’s plane.  ‘Cause that’s how I roll.  (NOT AT ALL.  I don’t even know who’s friggin’ plane that was.  We certainly didn’t roll in that crowd.)  I have pictures from when I was in 8th grade and went to DC (I was quite the scrapbooker then, including all my flight tickets, etc.).  I have pictures of when I was in Russia in High School on an exchange program in Siberia.  I have pictures of me at sorority formals and random dress-up events — Ghetto night, anyone?  Or, for my boyfriend’s Scholastic Frat (yes, I dated a cute nerd), “Pimps & Prostitutes” event.  *shudder*  And then I have pics as I grew older.  Me with coworkers at the company Christmas party.  Me sailing with the family.  On vacations with my now hubby.

And I think back to what was happening in all those pictures.  I have had an awesome life.  But I have felt fat for most of it.  

But I look at those pictures, and think, “Geez, that was a SKINNY girl!” or “Wow, my arms are so defined”.

Has my view of myself shifted as I’ve gotten bigger?  Have I become more accepting of what is big vs. small?  Or, as I imagine has happened, was I just in a cycle of self-destruction that I didn’t know that I was happy, healthy, and beautiful?

After looking through those pictures of me in Russia, I got the idea to try to find my Russian exchange student.  Tuiara stayed with my family for a month my Junior year of high school, and then I traveled and stayed with her family (and my best friend) in Siberia for a month that summer.  It truly was an amazing time.  So I consulted The Google.  And I found what appeared to be a Russian “Facebook”, where I found a girl who looked a lot like her (but 16 years later, who can really tell?), but had a new last name.  So I did what any Google Stalker curious gal would do, and emailed an address that *seemed* right.  The next day, I got my answer!  It really was her!  We emailed back & forth, and then she friended me on the *real* Facebook.  (Gosh I love that site!)

And then I had about a second to think, “Oh my.  I’ve gained 75 pounds since I saw her.  When we met I was in high school and 118 pounds, and I’m SO much bigger”.  But then I realized, I have had an amazing life.  And almost none of that has anything to do with my body size, or being heavy.  The pictures she’s about to see?  They’re ME.  And she was one of those friends that I really don’t CARE if she knows that I’m bigger, because even 16 years later, and a language barrier, she’s like a sister to me.  So how big I am?  Doesn’t matter.

I was feeling pretty good about this.  She started commenting on my photos – all of her comments were extremely positive and made me feel like the amazing rock star that I am.  (Seriously, I’m not usually this conceited, I promise.)

But…

Not sure if you’ve noticed, but when someone comments on a picture of you in Facebook, even when it was added months (or years!) ago, it shows up in friends’ News Feeds like it’s new.  So they have another opportunity to take a look.  This was one of those pictures…

The hubby & I at a winery in Paso Robles in the fall of 2011

And here are the new comments received on the picture:

Starts out really good, with Tuiara complementing me on my tall, dark & handsome husband.  I could get used to this (of course, I have, which is why I married that tall drink of water!).

And then, we get the comment about my chest.

I don’t remember you being so chesty!

At first, I didn’t know how to take it.  And then, I realized it was meant as a compliment, so I’ll take it that way – it definitely made me laugh.  At least on the surface.

But now, I have this fear that all these people are going to realize that *gasp*, this girl is fatter than she used to be, so her lady bits have filled out a bit (if a bit can be going from a 34-B to a 40-D).

I KNOW:

It doesn’t change who I am.

Doesn’t change that I’ve become a successful, contributing member of society.

But it does change the little persona that I thought I’d built up.

Not that I don’t expect people to notice.  ‘Cause it’s awfully hard NOT to notice a girl from HS going from 120 pounds to 210 pounds (where I likely was when this pic was taken).  And it’s not like she said, “Oh, man.  I don’t remember your butt being so BIG!”  or, “Woah, Lara, that tummy of yours has really grown, hasn’t it?”.  A large chest is something that people want, right?  (To a point, I suppose.)  But to me, I hear that and immediately assume it means, “Woah, you’ve gotten so fat that your sweater kittens are more like pumas”.  (You’re welcome for that visual.)

Does my chest look big there?  Yes.  

Does it always look that big?  Not really, but it is a pretty hefty chest.  

Is it bigger than in High School?  I sure hope so.  

Am I still the insecure high schooler who thought that everyone was judging her and her every move?  I’m not sure.  

Are you ever caught up in a circle of self-doubt and self-loathing, even though you KNOW you’re awesome?  How do you kick it?

Up, down, up, down…

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And, my weight is on its way up.  Not that I can say that I’m all that surprised, but it’s so frustrating at how finicky it is!  Saturday I was well within calorie targets before going to our friends’ housewarming party.  I steered clear of the wine and the food as much as possible (even grabbing a clementine instead of a slice of mushroom tart), but I eventually succumbed to the cheese tray.  Based on my estimates, I was still OK, but the extra dairy does not help me one bit.

I ended up not making anything for the party (which was fine, because they had TONS of food), but instead brought them a gift bag with bread, a specialty salt, and wine:

  • Bread – So that the house may never know hunger
  • Salt – So that your life is infused with spice
  • Wine – So that you have joy & spirit

I love the interwebs and their great ideas!  🙂  I got a loaf of herbed California bread from Great Harvest, and a smoked alder salt from Whole Foods, along with a Roblar Syrah 2008.  I would have LOVED the gift – which is usually my trigger that it’s acceptable!

Yesterday was not so great in the food department.  We had an appointment in the morning that lasted an hour and a half, so by the time we were finished we were famished!  Made plans to meet some friends for brunch, which was supposed to be off-limits this month.  I used a Groupon-type deal though, so I justified it, and it was for “sneaky healthy” food.  Unfortunately, both the food & the service were “meh”.  I won’t be going back.  Which then put me in a bad mood because I’d “wasted” a meal out on something that wasn’t good…

I ended up taking an hour and a half-long nap when I got home, then headed out to do the grocery shopping.  The friends who had the housewarming party were coming over to celebrate Chinese New Year, and I was cooking.  On the menu:

  • Trader Joe’s Vegetable Gyoza
  • Trader Joe’s Chicken Shu Mai
  • Trader Joe’s Pork Bao
  • Grilled chicken with Asian marinade
  • Steamed shrimp & vegetables (carrots, snap peas, broccoli & cauliflower)
  • Brown Rice

It wasn’t over the top, but I definitely over-did it on the calories.  And the sodium.  Paying the price today with an increase in weight, and a bit of bloat.  Doesn’t help that a new medication that I’m on will also cause bloat…  :-/  Just hope that it works!  🙂

After dinner we sipped a bunch of herbal tea, while I made some egg white salad for snacks this week, along with a lentil soup.  Our refrigerator is filled to the BRIM!!!

Heading to a new Pilates studio for a spin / Pilates combo session tonight at 5:30.  It’s pouring rain here, so I’m not super excited about doing anything but crawling into bed, but I know I’ll be excited when I get there, do the workout, and head home.

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