Less of Paige

Monday, February 27, 2006

Sad and Amazing

I read the book, "How to be Lost", by Amanda Eyre Ward. This book was very good.

One thing really stuck with me though, from this book. The book is about a family who deals with the loss of a five year old child. I don't want to ruin the ending, so I won't say anymore. Go read it. The thing that stuck with me was this quote:

“When you are small, if you reach out, and nobody takes your hand, you stop reaching out, and reach inside, instead.”

I've been wanting to write about "my kids" for a long time. There are a myriad of poems, quotes, songs, and books that perfectly describe my kids. But this one rings particularly true. When I talk about my kids, I'm talking about the kids I work with. I'm a foster care social worker- this means I spend alot of time on the phone. No, just kidding-- kind of... I support foster families who have accepted high needs foster children into their home, and I support and advocate for those children. I do both family and individual therapy with the families and kids.

Many families don't understand these children. They've (the kids) been abused, neglected, and most of them have been further traumatized by being in foster care and moving from family to family. Basically, by the time they've connected to a family enough to feel safe, and act out their internal feelings, families decide they can't manage them. So they move. And this happens over. and over. and over.

Don't get me wrong. Foster care is a huge necessity and it can be an amazing force for children when it works. But it's not the best- the best would be for children to be able to be home with their families.

I'm not saying what I want to. I guess what I wanted to say is- I totally understand that quote. It's about rejection. I think we do this, small or not. If we offer something- particularly ourselves or our need- and are rejected, we don't offer again. We figure, we'll be rejected again, I'll just take care of myself.

This is one thing when you are 26. It can be managed, and dealt with. And moved on from. It is quite another when you are 2, or 7, or 12. And you have kept on trying to reach out your hand, and it's never taken. And so you stop reaching it out. This is what most of my children do. That no one understands. They are small children, who have not been able to trust those they should have most been able to trust- and they are reaching inside themselves. Children trying to raise themselves. It's the saddest thing.

I love my job. I love getting to know my children. I love when I can advocate for my children. I love watching my foster parents take care of children and watching them blossom and grow into children who can learn to trust- and they can, most of the time. And that's the most amazing thing.

Saturday, February 25, 2006


When I did Weight Watchers (the first time) something that I found I loved and really helped was having a community of people to lose weight with. If you've ever tried to make multiple attmepts to lose weight, you know how frustrating this journey is. And so it's so wonderful to have people there who truly get it, who will hold you accountable, and be there to hold you up. WW stopped working for me, at least at this point in my life. But I never found another community to support me.

I do have friends and family. As you know, my sister's in this with me. I have WLB, my weight loss buddy. My husband, while not walking the journey with me right now, is incredibly supportive of the journey. Some others. But it hasn't been the same.

But I'm so excited now. I've been cordially invited to participate in an online group of women blogging their weight loss journey. I couldn't be more thrilled. If you're so inclined, come visit us at We Ate It, We Moved It, We Lost It. These women seem incredible. Some are doing amazing and some are struggling. Which is me every day!! I'm mostly excited about the idea and opportunity of a community of women- people- to share my journey with. Thank you, Jules, for the invite. I'm so honored.

Friday, February 24, 2006

It's Friday and I'm not crying

So that's a good thing, yes??

210.5. Not too shabby. I'm not thrilled, mostly cuz several weeks ago I was 207 and my new pants fit alot better and didn't hurt. But down two from last week? Is a good thing. At least the scale is going in the right direction, sheesh.

So I'm down 11 pounds from the beginning and I'm down 1/2 a pound for The Wager. I'm pretty sure that so far Shannon is winning.

But she needs to watch out, because starting tomorrow the purple book is coming back out and I'm sticking to the 'xchange again. So. There. I still have to August. I want to lose thirty pounds by August and weight 181. :P That's for you big sister. I think I can do it. I need to stop eating ice cream for breakfast, but that starts manana. I can do this.

Thursday, February 23, 2006

Who Am I Kidding??

Do I think that if I eat a donut on the way home and don't tell my husband that I ate it that it doesn't exist? And in the interest of full disclosure, if I don't tell my weight loss buddy that I had McDonald's and chocolates yesterday, does that mean the calories don't count.

Yes, yes I do think that.

I'm kidding myself. And you know who's paying?

Not my WLB. Not my husband. That's right folks. It's me. Yeah me. Go me. I rock.

The saddest thing? While I was shoving the donut in my mouth tonight, I had all kinds of weight loss "mantras" in my head. I thought, "A moment on the lips is forever on the hips" (but the moment on the lips is soooooooooo good). Then I thought, "You don't want the food to control you, you want to control the food" (the food's in control. But right now? I'm loving the control the food has. Cuz it's so damn good).

This week has been frustrating. Which is not an excuse, please don't take it like that. It is to say, don't be thrilled for my Friday weigh-in tomorrow. It won't be pretty. Too much slacking. But next week, I've already talked to my husband about being accountable. The same conversation will happy with my WLB tomorrow. And I will be writing my food down. Me and the 'xchange? Are gonna be friends once again. I'm tired of gaining.

Wednesday, February 22, 2006

Me 'n Billy

Oy. That Billy. He's, um, crazy? Psychotic? One of those weird people who likes exercise that I'll never understand. I think I'll go with the latter, it's the least judgemental.

I did spend my 55 minutes with Billy and the "Boot Camp Gang" (I kid you not) this morning. It was, um, fun? No that's not right. Invigorating? Um, still not quite there. Tiring? Yup, yes, that would be the appropriate adjective.

In Billy Blanks Basic Boot Camp you're supposed to have Billy Bands (what's with all the B's??). I don't own Billy Bands because I have to earn the right to buy more exercise equipment by actually exercising consistently. But! You can do the program without Billy Bands. thank God. Because I think I might have keeled over had there been Billy Bands involved.

For those of you not familiar with Billy and his bands, the bands are these stretchy things. They're probably four feet long. You hook them onto your feet (I guess you'd be wearing sneakers, like they do in the video) and hold on to the handles with your, um, hands. Then you do exercises like arm lifts, and kicks, and other crazy things. They look to me like crazy torture devices. And the really really buff chick? She even grunted when using them. So I know I'm not ready yet. There was one other girl not using them, and ironically she was the only one not sweating. I still sweated, in case you were wondering. (Is sweated a word?)

I have decided two things. Actually, it's a three step plan involving Billy. Step one: Get decent at Basic Boot Camp sans Billy Bands. Step Two: Add Bands. Step Three: Be able to do Basic with the Bands. Step four (whoops I guess this is more than three steps. Sorry.): Graduate to Ultimate Boot Camp without Bands. Step five: Complete Ultimate Boot Camp WITH bands. By then I'll be SO buff. No one will recognize me.

So remember the buff girl on the video? When Billy had us do twists, you could see her abs twisting. It was beautiful and scary all at the same time. I want abs like that, but first I want to feel my abs.

Speaking of um, so I got on the scale tonight, and was up 2 pounds from Friday. WTF?? Could it be the french fries I ate today? Could it be the Chinese food? The small pizza from Saturday? UGH. Pray a small miaracle happens between tonight and Friday morning. I can't take another gain.

Tuesday, February 21, 2006

The Dreaded E-Word

Yes. This blog? Is all about weight loss. Early in the blog, there are some posts about me going to the gym. As you can see, that didn't, um, last very long. Turns out I didn't really love the classes and I didn't like changing at the gym, it seemed dirty, and I got bored as hell on the elliptihell. Sooo I kind of stopped going, then when I switched jobs we moved far far away from the gym and *phew* that was a good excuse to quit the gym. Because, see, I hate exercise. Hate. Exercise. Sometimes I feel better when exercising, and that keeps me going for several months, however I often get a cold or go away or sneeze and that stops the flow. Then it takes me a year and fifty pounds to go back. At least I'm not the only one who hates it. I don't feel so alone.

But remember January? When I made thenon-resolutions? I believe (I'd have to check) that one of those non-resolutions involved exercise. (The first one? Great.) I had to decide what to do. I decided to use the exercise videos I already have and buy a few more. This way I'd have some variety- see I hate exercise and will use any excuse to not do it, including me being bored. So I'm trying to avoid any available excuses. This way, once I start, I'll keep going! Really! I will!

Then it took me approximately two and a half months to muster up any kind of motivation to exercise. Um, a five pound weight gain in one week combined with me and my weight loss buddy's declaration of "Must exercise on Monday! NO excuses!" got me in front of the TV.

My cat, Rory, she was around to supervise. Which meant that while my video was on, she sat in the middle of the floor exactly where my feet were supposed to be dancing. She made it fun. Ha haha! Did I just say fun? In reference to exercise? I was talking about the cat, not the exercise. The only thing I remotely like that involves sweat is yoga. Well, that you can technically call exercise, anyway. Ahem. Moving on.

I put the video in, and lo! I did complete it. It was 35 minutes long and I didn't actually sweat too much. Good thing, I have sensitive skin. Plus, I really, really hate exercising.

And I have a plan for tomorrow. It involves the early morning (once I come home at night, no matter what time (on Sunday it was 2pm and sorry for the parentheses in parentheses) I head straight for my pajamas and the couch. The most exerting thing I do at night is unload the dishwasher. ) So exercise at night is not an option. Anyway, now I'm all confused by the parentheses, and I bet you are too. Where were we? Oh! The plan: early morning, my cute (read: tight and not fit for public viewing) exercise clothes, and my cat. oh! And a new DVD. This time we're trying Billy Blanks Basic Boot Camp. Sans the billy bands. It's longer- 55 minutes, and from my other experiences with Billy Blanks (I used to have Tae Bo) it will involve lots of sweat. Wish me luck.

If you don't hear from me soon, I've collapsed in a puddle of sweat on the living room floor with my cat. It may be a while before I can walk again. We'll see. If I can, I'll let you know.

Monday, February 20, 2006

Earth Shattering Revelations

When I'm upset, I make poor, poor food choices. Not sure who I'm trying to hurt or get back at, or hurt, or what, but I really only hurt myself. Obviously.

Am trying. Is hard.

Friday, February 17, 2006

"I'm trying, but it's hard"

My husband asked me last night, while I was in a snit over nothing, if I was ever going to be done being crabby. I responded, "I'm trying, but it's hard."

I feel like that's my life anthem right now.

I'm trying to lose weight, but it's hard. Turns out? Fondue + lobster + stuffing + apple puff pastry + numerous chocolates at work and at home? Make you gain five and a half pounds. That's right folks. I went from 207 to 212.5 this week. Not that it wasn't worth it, and not that I easily couldn't have balanced the splurges with some better choices, I could have. But I didn't.

I'm trying to be brave when I'm scared, but it's hard. Some things are going on that are big questions in my family right now. I'm acting like nothing bothers me, la la la, but inside I'm scared shitless.

I'm trying not to be devastated, but it's hard. I'm feeling more and more like I'm losing my friend. Like, even if she does come back and want to talk to me, I'm so angry right now I'm not sure I'll want or be able to talk to her. Like, I'm not even sure she's going to decide she wants to be my friend anymore. And I still have no everloving clue what the hell I did to make her so upset. Which is scary, cuz if I don't know then I can repeat it. And this can happen again. Which will not happen, because before I'll let the friendship resume, I'm going to find out what the fuck is going on. Went on. Whatever.

I'm trying not to be lonely, but I am. I am missing my friend. Another friend at work is leaving. Most of the people I know at work are leaving. I don't have that many friends in this state to begin with, I can't have everybody up and leave me. My weekends are empty, and that makes me sad and lonely.

And so, I'm trying not to be crabby, but it's hard. I'm MSing, crampy, and tired. I'm up in weight. My eating is out of control- tied entirely, right now, to my emotions, which are all negative. I'm scared and upset about alot. There are alot of changes at work. I'm lonely. I'm pushing my husband away when I need him most with my crabbiness. I get upset with myself about being crabby which makes me more crabby. I'm sorry for you if you cross paths with me.

I'm trying not to cry, but it's hard.

Tuesday, February 14, 2006

My Lovely Valentine

My husband and I met in the summer of 1998. Although, technically, that's not the first time we "met". When we graduated from (different) high school, we had mutual friends. I went with these mutual friends (one of whom was my boyfriend) to my husband's high school graduation party at his house. Many questions were asked before about whether or not it was ok for me to go to a party when the Honoree didn't know me. I didn't know my husband back then. It was fine. I didn't know many people at the party, and I didn't feel well. There was (for some reason) a reclining chair on the driveway, where people were dancing and hanging out (we were in high school, remember). I didn't feel well, and so I spent most of the night on the chair. I left early and drove home and went to bed. My husband remembers another time we met, at another party, but you'd have to ask him about that.
Anyway, so we met officially through the same mutual friends. I had broken up with my boyfriend and also learned that he had been cheating on me. My trust in anyone of the male gender was- to put it mildly- not high. We all hung out (we went to the movies, I think) and after that he asked for my number. We had fun talking. He called when he said he would. Something I wasn't used to.
That was the very, very first thing that attracted me to my husband: he called when he said he would. It set a tone for the rest of our relationship.
It would be several years of friendship before we quit denying the mutual attraction. We were very good friends and saw each other through romances and some loneliness. He, as my friend, walked me step by step through some of the darkest times in my life. We got jealous of said romances and hid those feelings. At the very beginning we went on a "date" and talked about all the reasons why we couldn't date.
Fast forward two years. I had transferred schools to one in California (we both lived on the East coast) and I was home for the summer. We were inseperable. His mom commented about how we were together all the time. I was working at two jobs and we spent all the rest of our time together. He used to come see me at Applebees and he liked to witness and make fun of my mistakes.
On June 25, we got over ourselves and kissed, for the first time. Our first kiss. It followed a night of a 10pm dinner at Denny's (I was late babysitting) and lots of flirting. While the earth didn't move, something shifted inside of me, between us. Something that, while we tried a couple of times to go backwards, would never let us move backwards.
There were lots of rules. (set up by yours truly, the control freak). We were not serious. This was not going to last. I was going back to California and didn't want to do long distance. I was so, so scared. Something inside of me sensed how big this was between us and I wasn't ready, I was scared. He spent the next few years trying to be patient, while I pushed him away and tried to pull him back. We fought alot. We spent many, many long hours on the phone. Everytime we got together in person, the connection was there, undeniable.
People on the outside didn't get it. All they saw was us fighting. They didn't like how he treated me- we fought too much. They didn't see what was really going on. I was fighting against what was there, and he was trying to stay sane. I broke up with him two times in that period.
Then we got together "for good". I realized what I already knew. I moved back to New England (my family is all here as well). He came and picked me up, much in the same way he had brought me to California and dropped me off. We fought the whole. way. home. I was scared- this whole time we had been "long distance". I'd never really had a serious boyfriend in "Hi honey, wanna come over?" range. I was, again, scared to death. I broke up with him again, but this time it lasted, like, a night.
After that, the games were up. Over. Finis. I knew we'd get married. In the years we spent as best friends and as a fighting long distance couple, we had seen each other through some very serious drama, and difficult times in our lives. Our friendship built a very strong foundation for what has become a very strong relationship. And we did, we got married. I got to marry my best friend, just like that cheesy quote.

This boy I fell in love with? He has his quirks. He loves comics and action figures. He is so smart. He loves cooking (good thing). He grocery shops and does laundry. He hates vegetables. He's great with kids. He's quiet until he's comfortable, then it can be hard to get a word in edgewise. He loves movies. He can be sarcastic and funny.

My husband- he is my heart and soul. He gets me like no one else does. He treats me like a Queen, but not in a demeaning way. We're partners in life. We respect each other immensely. He protects and cares for me. He listens to me, even when I think he's not. When I'm upset and can't figure out why, he's patient. He puts up with my constant tears- from "I don't know what to eat" to a TV show to "I'm losing a friend". He deals with my mood swings like a champ. I have more fun with him than I do with. anyone. else. period. He doesn't put up with my bullshit, and I love having someone who can be around to challenge me. We belong together. He's my best friend, my lover, and my soulmate. I am so blessed. No words are enough.

Happy Valentine's Day, Khalil. I love you with all of my heart.

Monday, February 13, 2006

Fat Girls Want To be Cute, Too

So the whole wearing-four-pairs-of-pants-day-in-and-day-out has stopped working. So I scrounged up some money and went shopping. I had a whole plan. TJ Maxx and Marshalls first, then Old Navy. It was a good plan. Solid.

TJ Maxx was first. It was horrible. The mean people who run that store think that fat girls don't want to be cute. There were such cute pants! But! They all stopped at size 16! And I don't fit in 16s anymore! :( I scoured that store, the store I used to love, for pants that would fit. A sweater I liked. I found nothing.

More than slightly discouraged, I made a mistake. Went to Dunkin' Donuts and got a donut and a hot chocolate. Not my best decision ever. One day I'll write a post on the fact that I am very much an emotional eater.

On to Marshalls, after inhaling my donut. I actually tried a few things on in Marshalls, but to no avail. It all looked horrid.

Now, Wal-Mart was not in the original plan. But the original plan also did not include not finding anything at my first two stores. So, remembering that the pants I wore today came from Wal-Mart, I decided to stop by. At Wal-Mart I found two really cute pairs of pants and a really adorable sweater. I felt reassured- someone believed that fat girls deserve to be cute too!! *phew*. Also, one of my favorite things about Wal-Mart was finding out that they have sized 17 and 19 in Juniors. I didn't buy anything in those sizes, but I adore the fact that they recognize that not every teen that wants to be cute stops at size 13 and 15. So that made me happy. Say what you will about Wal-Mart, but I liked the way they shared the love.

On to Old Navy. I was getting tired, but was feeling happy about the Wal-Mart success. I basically picked out every pair of 18s in the store (I've done this before, at other stores). By the end, I had about 20 pairs of pants. I liked two pairs. But you know, I guess you've got to work a little. I found some cute tops and sweaters also. So overall? Shopping was a success.

I just want it to be known: No matter the size, everyone wants to be pretty or cute. It's tough when you're battling the urge to just wear sweats every damn day because they're the only comfy things, and you can't find anything halfway decent in the stores. It. Just. Sucks.

Sunday, February 12, 2006

We are Winter's Bitch

In New England, where I live, it has been the mildest winter ever. Typically in January and February the temperatures are in the teens to thirties. If we hit high thirties, we're lucky. It usually snows at least every week. You can always see your breath. This year has been so weird. It's been in the forties, and sometimes, even in the fifties. If you say it's cold at 41 degrees, people say things like, "Well for February 1st..." Like the date changes how 40 degrees feels. Just because it's supposed to be 22 degrees, and we're used to 22 degrees, doesn't make 40 degrees any warmer. No, but really, I've said, "Wow, it's beautiful out" more than I can ever remember saying in January and February ever, except for when I lived in California. (In CA, 40 degrees really is cold.)

Well, until today. Today Winter laughed in our faces and said "Ha haaaaaaaa! I was just saving it all up! You all got comfortable in your spring jackets and started eyeing your capris (which I don't own, but that's a story you'll hear about in a few months), you FOOLS!!"
She made us her bitch. She laughed in our face. And then she gave us all of winter's snow. In one day.

The Evidence:
These are our cars. License plates have been blurred to protect the innocent. Oh, wait. Nope, that's snow.


The view from our back porch. That's our grill. Well taken care of, I know.

Khalil, who is thrilled to be out shoveling. I was going to help, but we only have one shovel. He sent me back inside. So, so sad.

See? Winter made us her bitch. In one day.

Edited to Add:

I HATE putting pictures up. I love having them, but it completely stresses me out to get them up. It takes me forever. And if anyone offers the helpful advice of, just click on the button and c/p the pic in, well, just don't offer that advice. Mmmmmmk? It just stresses me out. And takes me forever.

Friday, February 10, 2006

Friday Update!

Well, it is sad that I cannot eat anything I want whenever I want. I miss fast food, and pizza, and chips, and cookies, and especially brownies. I miss huge portions. I do not miss the feeling of overeating, which I had far too often.

The scale this morning? Made it all up to me. 207- Down FOUR pounds. Whhhhheeeeeeee!!!
In related news, I had a dream that on some random message board, someone had written:
Subject: Less of Paige that girl... (and I got all excited that someone was reading!)
Post: Is such a fat loser. (Not so excited.)
In still related news, tomorrow begins The Wager.
My starting weight will be today's of 207. I have until August 1. Go me!

Wednesday, February 08, 2006

The New Deal

Shannon and I have agreed to the terms of our wager:
Starting weight: Saturday, Feb 11.
Ending weight: August 1.

Whoever has lost more pounds wins.

Loser buys winner (who's actually the biggest loser, ha ha) dinner (a nice dinner out, winner-loser's choice) AND an outfit.

I'm so looking forward to my dinner and outfit. Now I just hope I don't have to eat my words.

Snail and Hippo

I think I've mentioned before, that I've tried Weight Watchers before. Twice. The first time, I kicked Weight Watchers ass. I lost about 30 pounds. I exercised. I swam. I was an expert points counter. And I lost weight. Then I got married. Then I gained about 36 pounds or so. When you celebrate every 2/10 of a pound, 36 pounds is sad. It makes you sad when you finally go back to Weight Watchers and step back on the scale and cringe at the number. So, I went back the second time. And in about four months I lost about six pounds. It also was sad. It was so hard last time, and I can't for the life of me figure out why.

Weight Watchers talks alot about lifestyle changes. You can even become a Lifetime Member at Weight Watchers. Once you reach your goal, if you maintain that for six weeks, you're a lifetime member. You don't have to pay anymore and you have to weigh in at least once a month. The point being? Diets don't work. We all know that. We all know that diets don't work and if you want to lose weight and keep it off you have to make a lifestyle change. And not change back. Otherwise, well see above about 36 pounds.

When I started Weight Watchers, I was determined I was not going to be one of the people who were back for their third time. I was going to do this ONCE and it was going to be a lifestyle change and that was that because I was tired of being fat. So smug, was I. Then I got closer to being married. Then I got married. Then I realized I was paying $10 a week for people to tell me I was gaining weight. So I took a "break". Then I gained 36 pounds, and decided it was time to go back.

So I went back. Bound and determined that the 2nd time was the charm. The second time was dismal, as I mentioned before. Which was when I decided that it might be worth my while to try something, um, different.

Fast forward through lots of blood tests and you get a doctor telling you that you need to lose weight- not only so you can feel good about yourself again and not avoid shopping like the plague, but also because if you don't lose weight you're on the fast track to diabetes. And having just watched your grandma suffer some serious complications mostly stemming from diabetes, you know you don't want to go there. So I went to a nutritionist, who introduced me to the 'xchange. Which I like a lot better that WW, for the simple reason that it gives me more structure and forces me to eat more healty. On WW I can eat in my points, but I choose ice cream for all my points, that's my choice. Obviously they don't encourage that, but still. The option is there.

However, the 'xchange still must be a lifestyle change. Unless I want to lose weight only to gain it back and then some. Which brings me to my point (which actually is not to tell you the story of my weight loss attempts). Sometimes, it makes me sad that I have to change my lifestyle. See, I loooooove food. Especially food that's bad for me. When I see coworkers bring in McDonald's, and D'Angelo's, and Wendy's, and eat it all, well I want that option. I want to be able to eat whereever the hell I want. But the thing is? I'm not built like everyone. First of all, I don't have a stop button. Second of all, I gain weight. Quickly. I put on twenty pounds in a year, twice. (In 2002 and in 2004). And in 2003, from August to January (that's five months, folks) I gained the aforementioned 36 pounds. In other words, I have to be really careful, because apparently I have the metabolism of a snail. And the appetite of a hippo. And sometimes, it's just so damn frustrating. I want it opposite. But noooo. But this is part of growing up, getting to know myself, and treating myself well. I have to accept who I am- someone who really can't eat crap willy-nilly and not pay for it- and I have to deal.

but I don't always have to like it.

Tuesday, February 07, 2006

For Kicks

Thought I'd try a meme. Really, I'm just trying to fit in. Everyone's doing them.

Four Jobs I've had:
1. Babysitting: I did this to support myself from ages 12- current (I still occasionally moonlight as a babysitter. I love babies.) When I think now, that I was babysitting at the age of 12- responsible for the care and protection of children smaller than me- it gives me hives. What were these people thinking??? To be fair, I started as a "mother's helper" (I folded lots of laundry), but still...

2. Retail: TJ Maxx, Parade of Shoes... I hate retail. I mean, I loved the 10% discounts, but really, really hated working in retail. People. can. be. so. rude.

3. Waitress: Oh my. I was a horrid waitress. The summer I waitressed I also nannied, not that that is at all relevant. I spilled soda, water, and alcohol on people. If people ordered appetizers, you were supposed to put the apps in, then wait a few minutes before entering the meal, because everyone hates it when the meal comes and you've only just begun your appetizers. Well, if I didn't put them in at the same time, I'd forget to put their meals in. A half hour later, people would be wondering where their food was, and the kitchen would be telling me, we don't have an order for steak for that table!! And then I'd look, and sure enough there was no order. Waitressing was, um, not my strength. But I ahd always wanted to try it, and I did.

4. Social Worker: I've done lots of kinds of social work, all involving children. I haven't been this good at something since babysitting. I love and adore social work and I'm not bad at it. My soul lies in social work. I've done child protection social work, counseling for children who've been sexually abused, family preservation, hospital social work, adoption, and my current job of foster care. As long as I'm busy and feel like I'm working and am challenged, I love my job. Good thing, cuz I sure barely get paid for it.

Four Movies I can Watch Over and Over:
1. Men in Black
2. Princess Bride
3. Men in Black II
4. Gone in 60 Seconds.
clearly I'm no conneiseur of movies. I like movies that make me laugh and cry. I'm not some kind of tough critic.

Four Places I've Lived.
1. Cheyenne, Wy.: For the first, I don't know, 6 months or so of my life.
2. Connecticut. From 6 months to 17, when I left for college, then 22 to now, when I cam back.
3. Rochester, NY: I started college here. I. Hated. It. and went downhill really, really fast. I desperately needed something different, and made one of probably four of the best decisions of my life, moving to:
4. Azusa, CA: Nicknamed the armpit of California, but who cares? I went to college there. Finished my BSW and worked for a year, before coming home, to CT, to get my MSW and get married. Not in that order.

Four Places I've Vacationed:
1. Disney World: Honeymooned here. Was AWESOME.
2. Do trips back to CA to visit friends count? I hope so, cuz I've never done many vacations.
3. How about trips cross country with my hubby (who wasn't at the time) to bring me to college and then home again?
4. Um.... I did a missions trip in Mexico and one in Canada. Let's count those.

Four TV Shows I Love:
A. Current:
1. Gilmore Girls
2. Everwood
3. Grey's Anatomy
4. The O.C.

B. Reality (really, it DOES need it's own category)
1. America's Next Top Model
2. Any MTV Reality Show. ANY.
3. Starting Over (Please don't hate me, but I TiVo it.)
4. The Amazing Race
and many, many more...

C. Not Current:
1. Friends. All. Time. Favorite. I know, I know, so cliche, but I LOVE Friends. When I have a bad night and can't sleep, I put in one of my Friends DVDs (I own them ALL) and can chill out. Some nights? It's the only thing that makes me chill out.
2. Dawson's Creek. All the appropriate teen angst at just the right time in my life.
3. My So Called Life. You were oh so short but oh so good.
4. ER. Ok, ok. I know it's current, but I don't watch anymore. I love the old ERs.

Four of my Favorite Things to Eat:
1. Ice Cream, particularly Cookies and Cream and anything chocolate
2. Pizza
3. Pizza
4. Chicken Parmesan
That was hard- there are a million foods I love

Four Sites I visit Daily:
1. TV Guide
2. Hamster Watch (During Big Brother Season)
3. Pink is the New Blog
4. (this one is weekly) Post Secret

On a Roll

I'm discovering that I'm an "on a roll" kind of person. This can work in either way for me, good or bad. Once I start exercising, I keep going. I get on a roll, and enjoy it, and keep doing it. Once I stop, I stop. It takes me forever to start again. Once I start eating healthy, I keep it up. I like the way it makes me feel. I like eating healthier. But once I "take a break" or don't do well, that's it. I can't eat just one cookie, oh no. Once I've eaten one, well why not eat four? Or ten? Or the bad?

I guess another way to put it is I'm very all or nothing. Either I'm doing something all the way, or I'm not doing it at all. It's something good to know about myself, but I have to work on using it for the good and keeping it away from the not-so-good.

Sunday, February 05, 2006

SuperBowl Sunday

A few weeks ago, I was leaving a client's home. I had just met with a dad. As I was leaving, he said, "Who you pulling for in the Superbowl?" Now, if you're paying attention, I'm working at a newish job, so I really want to get along with people I have to work with, often for a long time, clients included. However, I couldn't even make an answer up. I stood in his cold driveway for a minute, thinking. Racking my brain, trying to come up with a football team, any team. Finally I had to look at him and say, "Um, who's playing?" He told me, the Steelers and Seahawks. I picked a team, and today I have no clue who I said. I think the Steelers. Not sure. Whatever I said, he agreed. So that was good.

In our house, we watch the first hour of the Superbowl. Or so. Actually, when I came home from the movies, the TV was paused (LOVE TiVo). Khalil was sitting at the table grading papers. He was pausing the game and then watching the commercials. But when I wanted to change it at about 7:30, that was ok because he'd seen all the good commercials. He's back to grading and I'm enjoying a Beauty and the Geek 2 Marathon. We're such nerds. To be fair, we did at least get invited to a party this year. So that was nice. We would have gone if the friends we just set up went, but she had a prior Superbowl Party commitment. So we chose to stay home.

Which is cool for two reasons. A, I got to go see Brokeback Mountain. Which was sooooooo good. It was not the most fast-paced movie, but it was intense and sweet. Um, but not intensely sweet. Both my friend Liz and I were crying- not even just sniffling, but crying- by the end. The credits rolled and we just sat there. So. Good. If you aren't offended by gay love scenes, I highly recommend it. B, I'm not feeling well (again?!?!?) so I'm happy for the couch time. Hopefully I'll rest/sleep it off and be fine tomorrow.

One last tangent. I've talked about Fridays before, and how I take them "off" from the 'xchange. Well, my goal this weekend was to stay on the 'xchange starting Saturday. I started Saturday off good- out to breakfast with my dad I had 1/2 of a veggie omelette with cheese, a few hashbrowns, and two mugs of tea. At his house, 1/2 glass of juice. Then I got home. And I was hungry. I tried- for lunch I had rice, then a banana, then later some veggies. And that's about when the weekend started going downhill. It involved an extra slice of banana bread, and two cookies worth of frozen cookie dough. Today it involved movie theater popcorn and fried chinese food. The positive thing that I take from all this is that while I still make mistakes, they seem... not as drastic as before. Before, my mistakes involved 1/2 bag of oreos, or a bag of chips, or several candy bars, or huge bowls of ice cream. Huge servings of food, all the time. I'm not perfect, but I am trying and improving.

Shannon and I are going to come up witha a new wager. We've done this before- most often betting each other an outfit for whoever loses more weight. I won once, and I LOVE the clothes I got- I don't fit in them anymore though. :( Last time we wagered, I gained more weight than I lost. It was sad. This time will be for real.

Friday, February 03, 2006

Today is FRIDAY!!!

Two weeks ago, I weighed in at 213. Or something along those lines.
Last week, after I didn't eat all week because, you know, of the puking, I weighed 214.
This week, I weigh 211. I'm pretty excited. :)

I like watching the scale go down (never mind the weird 214 blip, which my friend described as "my body hanging on for dear life". Seeing the scale goes down gives me hope and gives me motivation. It means that this is working, and that it makes sense to continue on.

So continue on I will. Today IS Friday, so I'll continue to make good choices but will take it easy.

On a weird sidenote- there's a 37 year old woman on TV who is married to and 8 months pregnant by a 14 year old boy. She's telling everyone that she was led on (she thought he was seventeen. That makes a BIG difference, youknow???). But now she's in love and married and hopes she's not going to prison.

What do I say? That's sick. She was looking for someone to dominate and he's looking for a mommy. (Coincidence he was raised by his grandma? I think not. Coincidence she's waxing poetic about how he listens to everything she says??? I think not.) Sick sick sick.

Thursday, February 02, 2006

A La Cuisine!! ???

Where have I been? I wish I knew. Actually, I had the flu. And a nasty head cold.

Which brings me to today's story: I cooked.

I came home from work last night, around... mmm... 8 or so? And my hubby, poor guy, was in bed with chills and very flu-like symptoms. Symptoms that I had over a week ago and led to three days out of work, throwing up, and other fun times, but for him are leading to one day out of work and "I feel better!" Good thing I'm not bitter.

So I was left on my own to cook. Now, if you don't know me very well, you have no idea of the crisis this brings. But it does. See, cooking gives me anxiety, makes me nervous, is difficult for me, and I don't do it well. Most of the time (oddly enough I make some things well: lasagna and shrimp calzones. I'm strange.).

Khalil had left out pork to defrost, and I was pretty sure that once you defrost meat you aren't supposed to refreeze it, so I decided to cook it. I looked on the handy dandy internet and found what seemed to be a pretty easy recipe for pork chops. I thought, I can do that. And I decided to make some broccoli-cheese rice (from a box) and steam some squash. Easy-peasy, yes? Nnnoot so much for moi.

I read the recipe and the instructions for the rice several times. I planned what I would cook in what order. Start with rice (you have to brown the rice before adding water) then do the flour and the sear for one minute on each side of the porkchops. Then I'd add the water to the rice, put the water and steam the porkchops (if you don't believe, click on the link for the recipe) and then set the squash to steam.

Everything went according to plan! With much concentration and effort, I did everything. I browned the rice. I seasoned the pork and coated them with flour. Heated the right amount of oil. Seared the pork one minute on each side (I timed it). Cut the squash and got it ready. Then I got the rice ready with water and seasonings, got the pork ready with water and seasonings, and set the timer on the squash. Weirdly enough, all three of my dishes were steaming and simmering. This did not seem odd to me. Maybe it should have.

About twenty minutes later, timers are going off and I think "Voila! Dinner! I rock! maybe this isn't so hard???" God laughs. I pull the rice off the heat and take the lid off. I had to like pry it off, which was weird. It looks a little, well, runny, but you're supposed to let it sit for five minutes so I figure that will take care of the runny. I take the lid off the pork. Looks, well brown. I'm fairly certain pork's supposed to be brown, so I figure that's good. I'm not thrilled with the having to scrape the pork from the pan, but I notice a yummy looking coating of brown on the bottom of my pork. (More golden brown and less pork brown). Mmmm that looks good! Maybe I'll just turn the porks over and see if I can get the other sides golden brown??? I try, but seems like that's not really working so I give up and take them out of the pan. Tinfoil over them to keep them warm while the rice is, um, setting. Getting less, you know, runny.

I weigh my pork (a little too much, but the bones in pork are, well they weigh alot, right??). I get my rice. Still a little runny, hmmm, but I'm hungry and it's 10 pm (I kinda procrastinated before starting to cook. I had medicine to give and blogs to read, come ON!) so I figure the rice is fiiiiiiiine. I get my squash (seems a little, um, watery but whatever) and go sit down.

Take some bites of rice. Yeaaaah, still runny but you know- tastes pretty good. Try some squash. They're not overly cooked, but for some reason they're watery. HOW did I make watery squash!?!?!? Still, not bad. Try the pork. Oh. Can't cut the pork with the side of my fork. That's odd. Cut it with my steak knife. The brown part, it's um, Crunchy. Not chip-a-tooth Crunchy, but kind of close. The rest of the pork is, cuttable. Maybe a teeeeeeny bit dry, but still. I have lots of water on my plate from the squash and the rice, so I can just kind of dip the pork in that and it will be ok.

I told Khalil today and when I told him what I did with the pork he said, "That doesn't sound good". Thanks, hon. He looked at the leftover pork (which I saved (??!?!?!?!?) ) and laughed.
He told me this: You're not actually supposed to follow the directions on the box of rice (HOW am I supposed to know that, I wondered aloud??? I just told you, he says.). You need less water and you don't put the lid on all the way. I overcooked the squash (14 minutes not my 18) and I think he was implying that my first problem with the pork was the recipe. I hope he implied that anyway.

So what? So cooking's not my strong suit. Sue me.