Wednesday, December 31, 2008

Happy New Year!

I'm ready for the year to be done with. Here's to 2009! Maybe things will be better this year for Michigan, the economy, and my John Hancock -24% 401K (yeah, that stinks) but at least Chris and I have our jobs. 2009 is going to look promising. We've got a lot to look forward to. Hopefully next year I can get pregnant if I'm at a decent weight so I can have a kido in 2010. I'm not ready for one next year....way to soon. 2010 is a great year to have a child. I can feel it.

Saturday, December 27, 2008

Weight Watcher/Holiday Ramblings...

Chris and I woke up at 5:00 this morning. We were all set and ready to start our day but after discovering that we really couldn't do anything until later, we went back to bed only to wake up around 9am. I decided to hit the Weight Watchers 10 am meeting for the first time since March so I needed to get dressed quickly. On our way out the door, we hurt a big CRASH. Only to find outside that the ice that was on the roof slammed down on Chris's car and took off the passengers side mirror. Darn! because we'll have to turn that into the insurance company. He hates putting in claims but I don't want to think even how expensive it would be to pay out of pocket. Darn weather screws us again (in some fashion that is). So I get into the WW meeting and weigh in. I found out that I'm 2 pounds lighter than my last weigh in. I'm currently 185.2 on the WW scale. Not bad, er? I'll take that. When I first went to the move it to lose it class I was 193 so that's pretty darn good. I got the Weight Watchers new books for the Momentum Program and figured out that there is no way that I'm going to stick with the 26 points that is recommended for my daily target. I figured out that if I stick to 30-34 points a day that will keep in line with what I have been doing. I'm going to still use spark people to input my daily intake but I'll use the journal for writing it down when I eat so I can use it when I log in my food at night. The new program sounds like it is going back to the 2001/2002 program prior to the core program because there is no core plan now. They want you to stick with a target total point but then you are allowed to eat 35 extra points within the week. Nothing new there, really. I did notice that they are emphasizing working out more, which is good. They really never pushed it but the guides are noting that you should be moving at least for 30 minutes 6 days a week, which is true.

I handled the holiday okay eating wise. Sure, I could have made better choices on Christmas eve (Chris and I had some Asti) but we didn't do our usual fondue which is better for us health wise. I avoided the 190 calorie, 9g of fat crescent rolls at his mom's but had a few pieces of candy but I kept track of everything and it will even out in the long run. I definitely didn't gorge myself as usual, which is good. I have no idea what we are doing for New Years. We're invited to a party but I'm secretly hoping to do nothing but relax at home with the kitties because we would have to stay overnight and I just feel almost too old to be crashing at someone's house at my age...if that makes any sense. I just want to be in my bed, my PJ's, chilling out, oh, I'm so old but then we still have to work on Friday so that stinks. Another issues is that I know if we go to the party, I will be cramming food that I don't necessarily need into my mouth. My self control with appetizers is amazingly weak. Appetizers are my Achilles heal.

Chris and I got a $35 for Macy's so armed with our gift card today we went looking for some amazing deals. Needless to say, we came home empty handed. There is nothing that we want at Macy's. In fact, I really don't care for that store and if it wasn't for having a gift card, we wouldn't have gone in there. Here in Michigan, Hudsons was originally around but then it turned to Marshall Fields and then Macy's bought Marshall Fields about two or three years ago and since then I haven't shopped there. I could always find nice bargains at Hudsons but Macy's seems to be lower quality and the deals are not there. We looked and looked for something to pick up but after noticing the gift cards don't expire, why bother? It just firms up the fact that our major spending freeze is happening for a reason. We also hit Target and found nothing, Kmart well, I did spend $10 on gum drop garland but that's my weakness and it Martha Stewart 50%. We even managed to get out of Costco for $10, which is amazing. I think just in case if I get tempted to spend. I need to copy my dream backyard and put it in my purse and just in case if I get tempted to spend, I look at my goal to keep myself focused.

Christmas was a blur. I think it was because we both had to work on Friday, it just felt so rushed compared to usual. Chris and I had our usual Christmas Eve day where he sends me on my annual scavenger hunt. This began 3 years ago when he started doing this because he was afraid I would look for my gifts so he hid them and I had to find them by doing a puzzle, word find, caching clue, etc. It's an awesome tradition and I always love participating in it. He keeps me on my toes! That's why I love him. Great husband....well that's it for me today, take care all-Kellie

Tuesday, December 23, 2008

Very thankful that I have until Friday off!

The weather is utter crap here in Michigan. My parents spent the night last night and they are heading down to KY today. So my thoughts are with them during this time because that is going to be some trip. They were getting cabin fever up north and didn't want to wait until Christmas to leave. We are basically getting snow every day. Chris has to work this week so he's had a rough go these past few days. It kind of sucks that I have to work Friday but at least I have a job!

I'm enjoying my vacation. Nothing new going on. All the gifts are bought, just need to wrap them. We so went over budget this year so we're having a spending freeze for four months because we do not need anything at all! My plan is to avoid Big Lots, say no to Costco impulse buys because I cannot walk out of there without spending $100, and no to Meijer Outlet (Grand Rapids has an outlet and almost everything there is 50% - 90% off compared to the store). We have property taxes for our land in February, have to beef up the emergency fund, we have to pay city taxes, and save for our home improvement stuff (replace the rest of the windows, get a new kitchen door, and new french doors for the back). Plus we need to start putting money for a baby fund if we start to TTC next year (if the economy perks up).

I've been running my points on the Weight Watchers and I'm averaging about 26-30 points a day. There's no way in heck that I can eat 24 points a day. My typical work out earns me about 6-8 points a day, 5-6 times per week so that would be about 30-48 points that I'm earning in a weeks time. My calorie range is between 1500-1700 usually. Ever since the YMCA class I've changed my mindset about food and healthy living. I feel okay in the gym. I can use the free weights, the ball, the bands, and actually do lunges! I'm challenging myself on the cardio machines and not hesitating to work in my proper HRA range. I love my heart monitor. On the home front, we ONLY eat out 1 time per week. This mouth has not touched a Wendy's burger, french fries, Mc Donalds since September and I don't miss it. When we eat out, it's usually a local nice restaurant. Like this past Sunday, we decided that our eat out meal was going to be at this place called the Cherri Inn. They offer local fresh foods and they are known for their breakfast. It was a terrific meal and well worth it. About a month ago, our one eat out meal was Qdoba and we both felt, wow, was that worth it? Nope. So we're really putting thought into this. The one thing that I loved about the class is that they stressed that eating out is not worth it. People have been to dependent on going out for so long. The healthier way is to just use it as a treat. At first I thought it would be a "binge" meal but that's not the case. After doing this, I've found that I still stick within the proper calorie range.

My pants are fitting a heck of a lot better. Down below is a pair of pants that I would like to fit in better before April. Right now they are tight in certain areas so it would be great to see me fit into them by the spring time. Plus it will remind me of old times when I used to do this on a weekly basis. It's not the best picture of me, nor is the outfit a's just for demonstration purposes only :) That's it for me today, take care all-Kellie

Saturday, December 20, 2008

Oh, the weather out there...

The weather is definitely not good out there. Yesterday, we got slammed by another storm. It was so bad that Chris's work in Kalamazoo was delayed opening for 5 hours so he opted out of going to work yesterday because the roads were so bad and it would probably have taken him two hours to get there instead of one. I had yesterday off anyways because it was the beginning of my vacation. It took Chris about two hours to snow blow (but he helped some of our neighbor's out too). Thank God we bought a snow blower in September. I love that thing. So far this year our snow totals for the season already has reached 30.7", which is scary because this is only January.

Despite the snow, we were able to have some company last night, which was awesome. We had our neighbor David over. He just lost his partner of 15 years so that's said. His partner had a stroke a year ago (he was just 59) and it was not good. So we thought that with everything going on in his life, we should have him over a few times. It was nice to have the company. We had lamb on the grill, potatoes, veggies, and baby spinach. We learned some cool things about him. He's a comedian with puppets and he puts on shows. His puppets are awesome looking so we'll have to catch his show some time. We were talking about our houses and we might be an owner of a Sears Roebuck Catalog home! That's exciting so I'm trying to scour the net looking for our old house.

Christmas is coming and it just doesn't feel like it's that time of year yet. Almost all the gifts are bought for everyone. We just have a few loose ends for Chris's family. My family, we just drew one persons name which is nice. We are supposed to celebrate with them tomorrow but I doubt that because we're supposed to get another storm. Chris has got to work Christmas eve day so we're going out to church when he gets home then have a dinner and open gifts. On Christmas, we're at Chris's parents bright and early. Funny thing is that they stress to us the up most importance of getting there early. 95% of the time, everyone is still in their PJs. Now that Chris's sister who spends the whole week there kids are getting bigger, it makes me wonder when are they going to have Christmas at their own home because they never had one in their own home. Chris went over budget for Christmas then that prompted me to go over. I like what I bought him and hopefully we'll get the chance to use it. I couldn't beat the deals because I shopped at Moosejaw (a Michigan company) and EMS (Eastern Mountain Sports). I got 30% off of all the items so I couldn't pass that option up, especially with some of the items I bought him because some of the items never go on sale. The bad thing that I did though while shopping is picking me up something. I saw this Patagonia Jacket and I got $50 off of it so I got it. I have this thing about jackets, I have a ton of them.

The gym is going well. I need to work out Sat/Sun since I opted out of working out on Thurs/Friday. This was the first time in a long time that I didn't log my food every day. I missed 3 times last week so this needs to stop. This is a sign of my slacking behavior because I haven't missed a day of logging since September. Especially this time of year so I need to get back on it. No slacking.

Anji and Jan, can you pass me your email addresses please? Feel free to email me at so I can send you the recipe book online :)

Tuesday, December 09, 2008

Snow day!

I got a snow day today! I live in the green area on the map but the work place is in the pink area so they closed the office today. My boss called me at 6:30 to let me know that I didn't need to go in today. This is my first official snow day of the year and you know what? It's terrific. After Chris left for work, I crawled back into bed until 9:00. That felt particularly good because I was a tad tired this morning. I could have been very productive today but I chose to be lazy. My only outing of the day so far was to see my hairdresser Erin. I go to her home and she hooks me up with perfect cut so another super hair cut! I have to met Chris at the gym tonight so that's my day today :) I guess if I get super motivated I can wrap up Chris's presents but I don't know if I am that motivated (shame on me).

One thing that I have found lately with the going to the gym is preparing for it. I noticed that when I was not preparing dinner ahead of time last week in the crock pot or part of cooking Sunday, I felt rushed. I feel a ton better when I'm working out knowing that when we get home, dinner is ready. I just felt so unprepared last week when I neglected to plan. A couple of years ago, I got a WW friendly crock pot recipe book on the computer and it has a ton of healthy recipes. I haven't been disappointed yet. My latest tasty dish was a spaghetti sauce marinara sauce. I love that cookbook. I passed it to our trainers at the Y and they even thought it was good. If you are interested in a copy, drop me a line in the guestbook and I will ship it your way.

Living in Michigan is kind of sad right now. According to NPR, Muskegon, had a 22% unemployment rate and Detroit has a 21% unemployment rate. It's like wow, when is this going to end? I remember in college when I was changing my majors left and right, I thank God that I ended up being a social worker. At one point, I was going to go into business. That's funny, I cannot picture that. After looking at all my poor grades with my only one A in sociology I thought about being a therapist. At first I wanted to be a marriage therapist (that is also very funny) but after talking to a professor named Lori Ryan (who unfortunately died from breast cancer in her early 30s), I decided to become a social worker. Thanks Lori for inspiring me and giving me a sound solid career advice. I feel somewhat secure in my job but can anyone feel that secure in this day in time? I just hope that things turn around because it's so sad to see all these businesses closing, which impacts everyone. If I was in my 20s, graduating from college, as much as I like Michigan, I would be out of here. Now that is sad. I thank God for my job everyday. Take care all-Kellie

Saturday, December 06, 2008

This is why I am glad I bought a home with character...

I love my house, especially at Christmas time. New homes just don't do it for me. I especially love the fact that the first owner stayed in the home for 65 years. We're the 3rd owner of the home and I just feel the love that my home has. It gives off a very good vibe. So when I get to decorate for Christmas, my house kind of feels like it is singing. Last night it was so cozy because we had the fireplace going, the stockings were hung, and the kitties were chilling :) I love my life sometimes, it was pure happiness. Now only if I could bottle that feeling!

Life is good, working out is good. I have no idea how much weight I am down to. I wore my smaller jeans to work yesterday and they looked terrific. My stomach is getting flatter and the muffin tops are GONE! Yeah! I hear weight watchers is switching up their program this weekend. I might try to hit a meeting soon since I'm still a paying member. I haven't been to WW in eons. Partially due to the fact that I feel what I am doing now is better for me. I've never really emphasized eating better, just tracking my points. Now I am really eating better which includes vegetables, fruits, and other healthy foods. I actually eat a handful of nuts as a snack and I'm not afraid to (I was always afraid on ww to do this because of the point value). I've been doing the site with calories. I eat about 1500-1700 calories per day. I burn between 500-720 calories per work out. One meal a week, we splurge and go out. I no longer eat out more than once per week which really helps the budget. I no longer get that extreme hunger feeling or get that crashing feeling like my sugar is dropping. I feel terrific. I have a ton of energy! We've been at this for almost 3 months now and I'm proud of us. It's nice to have a spouse on board. Chris is looking terrific. His belly is going doing. The challenge for him has to get his calorie intake because that can get difficult. He was initially eating not enough so now his intake is better but it's hard to find extra healthy foods to add into his day. We no longer buy lunch meat for him because we take some chicken or turkey and cook it up for him where he throws it on some bread. Plus it's a heck of a lot cheaper. I get chicken for $1.89 a pound at my meat market and we usually get turkey for 59 cents a pound. Eating better has definitely helped our budget. Take care all-Kellie

Thursday, November 27, 2008

Happy Thanksgiving!

Happy Thanksgiving all! I have a lot to be thankful this Thanksgiving. I have a terrific husband, 2 great cats, a roof over my head, we have our jobs, both of our parents are still healthy (mine more than his), and we have our health.

Chris is going to make the turkey today and were going to take it down to his folks. He makes the turkey on the Webber Grill (charcoal) and it super yummy. Maybe I will try to get some pictures of him doing this. The turkey comes out pretty than a Martha Stewart Magazine. Really and the taste is amazing. It's our year at his folks so hopefully things will go well. I'm okay with his folks and feel comfortable around them but I have my usual uneasiness about his sister. Then we never know if his crazy aunt from Delaware is going to fly in so that's even worse. She's like SIL but 10x worse. Anxiety is high. I'm hoping that Chris is going to have a chat with his sister today about gift giving at Christmas where he notes "how about you don't buy for us and we will not buy for you" since brother in law is unemployed thanks to GM. Plus, I'm tired of getting all of the regifts. For our last birthday she gave us a spoiled bottle of wine that the cork was rotted out and it tasted like vinegar and for Christmas she gave us a salsa mix that expired in 2002. I know it's the thought but I'm struggling to find thought in those!

I wrote the folks a letter and they claimed that they never got my second message. Okay, I will take that but it appears that things are hammered out now. They noted that I "over reacted" but in this family, you never know. I think this all stems back to the issues over the holidays. My family has the tendency to do this, myself included. I don't know where it came from but the holidays were a stressful time when I was kid. It was not very happy around the home at Christmas especially when I was a teenager. I heard that Christmas is for little kids, etc. I remember going to church just being generally withdrawn and sad at Christmas while being a teenager. Maybe it stems back to my parents financial situation when I was a kid or maybe even their own upbringing because my dad was a foster child in the 30s-50s and my mom grew up in poverty in the hills of West Virginia. I don't necessarily remember them noting positive stories about Christmas time, just sad memories when they do come out because it's not spoken usually at all. For instance, at one foster home my dad was in, he thought he was getting a bike because he saw it. So he noted this to the foster mom and she noted "no you are not getting a bike" my dad noted that "I saw the bike" and when Christmas arrived no bike or anything else. He had no presents at that Christmas or hardly any at other Christmas's. That is sad. So maybe this is where my family gets all wacky about Christmas from the past. Those old feelings get churned up. My thing is that I am aware of this. I do tend to get unbalanced around the holidays with stress. Chris and I have been starting our holiday time so hopefully the stress will end. We have a nice Christmas Eve, have dinner, go to church, and come home to open gifts. I also notice that I get overstimulated at Chris's parents home when we go down there for Christmas. The materialism is over the top and it's hard for me. I noticed that I get grumpy and sullen. I don't mean to but I do. Another thing that is drilled into me is being practical. I was talking to Chris about this. I'm so practical that it's not even funny. For example, my boss's husband died last month and for a gift back, I suggested gift cards while my other team members thought of a cute bear for her son with the dads picture on it and another keepsake for my boss. Why is it in my mind, that I couldn't come up with something like automatically? Humm...self awareness is good but I need to work on this stuff.

Body wise...I'm looking better. The class ended last week and I'm officially down 5 pounds, lost 7 inches, my flexibility has tripled, and my cardiovascular has increased greatly. The class was so worth it. My goal is to rejoin the class in the spring. Eating wise and exercise wise, we are still doing the same stuff. I get a combined 40-50 minues on the elliptical, bike, and arc trainer. The arc trainer is AMAZING! It's a true calorie burner. I burn about 11 calories a minute on this thing. At first, it was uncomfortable to go on this thing and now I am up to 20 minutes. About 5 weeks ago, I got my Polar Heart Monitor and I love it. I have to say that the machine readouts on calorie burn is not correct at all. My watch will tell me the exact number of calories and what my heart rate is. I'm usually exercising in about my 75% heart range which is good. I also pay close attention to my heart rate so that I'm not going over the max heart rate. I especially love the weekly summaries because it lets me know if I am on target.

Well, I hope you all have or had a terrific Thanksgiving! Take care all-Kellie

Friday, November 14, 2008

I put on a pair of pants that...

Well, I know the YMCA program is working because I put a pair of LL Bean Jeans that have not touched my thighs in 2 years on and they fit! Yippy! Our last class is on Wednesday so I'm sad to see it end. Chris and I have been working out 4-5 days a week doing 45 minutes of intense cardio (75% max heart rate) and doing 3 days of full body strength. Tuesday I get to do my health assessment post test so I'm looking forward to seeing the results. I feel absolutely terrific, lots of energy, and I can sprint up the 3 flights of stairs at the YMCA (something I was never able to do!).

One thing I find helpful when I work out is not paying attention to all of the TVs around in the gym. I take my little shuffle and listen to some tunes. My range of music is quite odd. Here's some examples: Biggie Smalls-Hypnotize, Butthole Surfers-Pepper, Cake-Going the distance, Chris Cornell-Scream, Coldplay-Speed of Sound, Commordores-Brick House, Death Cab for Cutie-Soul Meets Body, Rick James-Super Freak, House of Pain-Jump Around, MC Hammer-Can't Touch This, Tone Loc, Pink-So What, Poe-Angry Johnny & Hey Pretty, Porno for Pyros-Pets, Ramstein-Angel, Radiohead-All I need, Rupert Holmes-Escape, Shiney Toy Guns-Ricochet & Le Disko, Nine Inch Nails-Hurt. I find this to be a pretty good mix of music. Do any of you have any favorites? I swear when I hear Escape from Rupert Holmes, I want to burst out and sing it, no matter what.

Speaking of music, I've always loved music. I had my first radio at 5. When I was little, I always thought that I should be a music video director...oh, that is so funny. I've cut down on going to concerts in my old age (I'm joking). I have the "Prince Rule". You see, I have this rule that if I really, really, really like a band, I don't see them in fear of being utterly disappointed. You see, I went to see Price about 7 years ago after being a huge fan, only to be so disappointed that I no longer can listen to his songs in the same manner as before. For instance, Nine Inch Nails is playing tomorrow night. I loved that music a ton, but in fear of the Prince rule, I'm opting out of going. It's better to just still love the music instead of not.

Thanks for all the support about the family issues. Nothing has changed, haven't heard from them. That's their choice. The sad thing is that you really don't realize how messed up your extended family is until events like these happen. Please tell me that this is not the norm for people because this totally sucks. I'm refusing to dwell on it like I did my sister but it's frustrating because I'm just feeling like a sitting duck here. The holidays are right around the corner...that is a major bummer. One of my co-workers discussed her relationship with her mom. she noted that she doesn't have the typical mother:daughter relationship and she described the normal relationship as having lunch together, going shopping, etc. I guess I never had this either. I can't recall the last time I went shopping with my mom alone, just to browse, or even get a bite to eat alone. I question if it ever has happened during my adult life. I can recall the last lunch I had with my dad alone was 4 years ago. We just don't do that kind of stuff. Funny thing is that I have found with people that I know, the ones who really really really want to have daughters of their own, are usually messed up in some does this repeat the cycle of dysfunction? God, let me have boys then because I wouldn't want to put my future kidos through this crap.

Chris and I are going to Chicago tomorrow so I'm looking forward to that. It's supposed to be rather chilly so we better bundle up! It will be nice to get out of town. We plan on hitting the art institute and window shopping at some shops. We had the opportunity to take a bus down there for $12 so we couldn't pass that up. Food wise, I'm encouraging him to make some healthy choices because initially he was dying for some deep dish pizza. I suggested some sashimi and thai food so it looks like we will be doing that because I want to finish strong on Wednesday. Have a great weekend all! Kellie

Saturday, November 08, 2008

I think there's a storm brewing...

I think there's a storm brewing and I'm not ready for it. This storm is an emotional storm and I just don't want to deal with it. Things are going funky with my parents and my sister. Which totally ticks me off because I'm tired of the family drama. It happened last with my sister which lasted over two years and now it's happening again with me. It all started a little over a month ago when Chris and I went to Mackinac Island. My mom was pressing me to come visit her when we were coming home. For some reason, she thought we were driving near her home, which we were not. I explained how we were not even going to be close but I still felt pressured to attempt to see them and explained how it was 45 minutes out of our way but she wouldn't listen and noted that she would be very upset if we didn't stop. So that Sunday, I was hurt physically front the day before. My foot was strained from all the walking and I was tired. We left the island at 12:30 pm and then I called my dad and noted that we would still try to visit them (even though I was hurt/tired and it would be a fast hi/bye). My leg was hurting and I was upset in general so I talked it over with Chris so we decided not to make the trip over to see them. I called, told them why, etc. So that next weekend was the weekend when we capped the fireplace. Chris's parents volunteered to come up to help us get on the roof and cap it. When I talked to my mom that week, she was like "Oh, YOU'RE always seeing Chris's folks. They are a priority". I explained that they were purely coming up to help us out. I knew stuff was brewing then and we discussed it and thought, why not have them come down with Chris's parents here. We were having turkey on the girl and we could all visit. They declined. So we went up the next weekend. I got an earful about how we should have visited them the Mackinac weekend and how if we really wanted to see them, we could have left the Island earlier, how they never see us, and Chris's parents is the priority. I noted to them, it was not good to see them that weekend because we were not going by their house but was 45 miles out of the way, I was injured, etc. Chris's parents will come to help out with the house and visit us but that is their choice. I noted to them that they could have come down to visit but they noted that they felt like they were imposing. So after a few of my tears (because of hearing what I don't do is painful) and continuing to press on with my point I thought we came to a consensus. Chris felt that I held my ground with her but her felt that she did not feel the satisfaction of winning so I would probably get more crap in the future, he was right. Then comes my sister issue, my nephew's birthday is on Sunday. We will not be home on Sunday because Chris's dad is having a get together and it is custom to stay the whole weekend when it's a parents birthday because they are the priority. Well, it's my sisters son's birthday (nephew) and we wouldn't be around so I called her to see if we could get together so I could drop off some gifts and see them since we were not going to be around on his birthday. Left a message, no calls, nothing (it's two weeks later so I sent the gifts in the mail). I told my mom this. She noted "Well, Carrie isn't going to move the birthday" "I wasn't asking her to, I just wanted to drop the gifts off" I replied "Well, I guess Chris's parents are the priority?" she asked "Yes, it is his dads birthday and he is the priority because it's his dad. You wouldn't want me to chose Chris's nephew/niece over your birthday, would you?" I asked. So there was a dig from her. Then of course the next time we chatted, mom was nice finally, no digs. Then the next call, I called them on election night and noted that I was going to call them back but I fell asleep then called Wednesday to apologize then nothing. No calls, nothing. I know I am in for it now. Not only with my parents but again Carrie. I'm tired of this family crap. The last time this happened I basically cried for a year about Carrie. It was never resolved but I moved on. Now it's happening all over again, hell no I'm not going to put myself through that again. It was awful and I will never have that relationship with my sister. I've accepted it and now with my parents because they are feeling slighted over Chris's parents? It makes me feel emotionally tired and sad. Nothing is ever good enough on my parent.

I feel like we make about 85% of the effort when it comes to my family. I do 95% of the phone calls because I hear, "We never know when you are home" from my mom. I noted that "it's nice to see the attempt". They have only been to my home a few times since moving here because it's too far. My parents will come into town or near where I live and not stop. When we go up, it is expected to stay the full weekend but they don't stay here, etc. It feels like how much am I expected to give, give, give. Sometimes I feel that's all I do in my life is give but when it comes to myself, am I because I'm the giver and that is my role. I remember in the past, it was always me to run to them. Going back to college, they never came up because it was "too far and we're working" so I used the Greyhound a few times, in grad school I always went to them, when I was dating Sluggy, I ran to them, now I still run to them but it's healthier now. The common thing I hear "it's too far". Yup...this is going to suck because I know what is coming and heck, I don't deserve this one. Argh...need hug...and not ruminate on it. I keep on telling myself I'm doing the best that I can. I guess that's all I can do.

Monday, October 27, 2008

I may not be dropping the pounds but...

I may not be dropping the pounds but I sure am losing the inches. Oh my goodness, I have to say this working out is awesome. My pants are fitting better and my legs are really firming up. I can even run up 3 flights of stairs now without getting winded! I'm really impressed by the class because it made Chris and I recommit to our life style changes. It will be sad when the class ends because I love the support and the attention. They are offering another class but with our commutes in the winter, it would be impossible not to be late so we'll hook up with them again in the spring. I'm just uber impressed with all of our changes that we have made behaviorally wise. We eat better, feel better, and heck, we are looking better. If only I had taken a before and after picture...darn me for not doing that.

Ah, the election is only 1 week away. So here is what I believe: the social security especially the disability part needs a whole overhaul and welfare needs to be re-evaluated. I believe in government health care and I am willing to contribute my share for my fellow American because people should not go bankrupt due to medical bills or get denied for care that they need. Okay, don't hate me for it. I'm a social worker which usually = Democrat because Republican social workers are few and far between and the ones I've encountered are super scary. Michigan is hurting bad. For example, the local paper only had 2 pages of employment listings and half were in the medical field. Homes are being foreclosed left and right, every week a business goes out in my area, there are no jobs, and it's scary. I had a conversation with my mom and she's worried that if Chrysler gets bought out by GM, they would lose their hx. My mom is 57 years old and it will be 8 years before she gets medicare. What happens if my mom does not have any insurance in the future? On their fixed income, it would be a huge stretch to buy insurance. That scares the crap out of me. Listening to NPR today and hearing about how devastating it would be to lose one of the big 3 makes me sick to my stomach. I remember when my dad was laid off in the 70s/early 80s, I spent my childhood in the unemployment lines. My dad would work 2 jobs, one being a painter, the other doing factory work that drove scraps of metal into his skin, mom worked jobs that she hated but they did what they could to make ends meet. I never knew about it because they did the right thing and not transfer that stress onto my sister and I. My parents were smart though and they taught me some hard core values such as live below your means, do a budget, and pretend you are poor. I really do these things. Chris and I are doing things right (hopefully), we bought a 1 income home, we budget, save money where we can, and I rarely buy new clothes for myself (Goodwill and Salvation Army have always been a my best friend). We do spend on the house for home improvements (windows will be installed soon and Chris layed some insulation for the house) and travel but beyond that, we live simple. We have no debt besides the house and for me, that is an amazing thing. I like simple non-materialistic living and I could care less what other people think about me. I don't need the best, new greatest thing, nor do I need a brand new top to make myself feel good because I get that same feeling when I find a treasure at a thrift shop because after you wash a top, it's used anyways.

This time of year, I always think about the guys who I dated who were Republican...which were many because I'm a Democrat but somehow always date Republicans...thank Goodness Chris is a fellow Democrat. Anyways, the election time always makes me think about my first boyfriend David. I swore to others that I would kiss him in front of others (my first time) if Bush Sr. would win over Dukais. Funny thing is that he did but I freaked out and didn't kiss him at that time...that came later at a school dance :) Then Sluggy was a staunch Republican and he made me pissed off the whole election time. I still wonder if those two are still Republicans after Bush being in office. I remember telling him when GB got into office, his job would be gone, and it totally was. But if that wouldn't have happened. I might have ended up with him because we moved in with each other due to financial reasons and after that hell, I dumped his @ss! Yeah! Go me, Go me...then I met Chris :) So everything happens for a reason. Whom ever gets in, we'll survive...we've done it the last 8. Just go out and vote and hope for the best because it will eventually get better. It always does.

Sunday, October 19, 2008

I worked a what!?

I, Kellie Louise [last name], used a chain saw to chop down 9 Black Walnut trees in our back yard today. I never thought in a million years that I would have done this but you know what? Using a chain saw is awesome! BZZZ BZZZ! I'm thinking of that hair band chain saw song now :) Chris and I have been wanting to drop those trees since buying the home and today was a perfect day to do it. It was a crisp 50 degree day and we spent from 11 am until 5pm chopping the trees and putting the brush in a pile that will go to the yard waste facility next weekend. It really opened up the back yard. I also clipped about 20 choke cherry trees at the top of our hill. Our plan is to develop the hill and have some type of pagoda at the top of the hill next year with some outdoor furniture and our fire pit. And yes, we live in the city! (Above is the back yard this past spring, I'll try to post picks of what we did this weekend sometime this week). Our lot is pretty funky because it goes about 160 back and part of that is up a hill. With all the work, I'm completely sore now so I will sleep good tonight.

The workouts with the move it to lose it are going extremely well. I'm feeling better and not getting so winded when I walk up the 3 flights of stairs at the YMCA. Chris and I are doing 4 days of cardio for 45 minutes plus stretch and then 3 days of stretch. The Y just got this cool machines called "Freemotion" where the machine uses your body and they are so cool. Much better than the typical machine. I'm down a pound but I'm actually fitting my clothes better, which is good. Chris and I went to a health fair yesterday when we visited my folks yesterday and our cholesterol looks a whole lot better. I had always hovered around 200 and it was 174 (non-fasting). I was pretty happy about this. I think the program has done a good job at changing my eating behaviors because I'm more mindful about eating fruits and vegetables. We just need to stay on this track! Well, that's it for me tonight, take care all-Kellie

Monday, October 13, 2008


Today wasn't the best day. I learned that my boss (who is absolutely the best boss in the whole entire world) husband passed away on Saturday from Crohn's Disease. He was only 49. They have a child who is 7. I really feel for her and her family right now. So send some positive thoughts her way.

Things like this make me think about losing Chris. I don't know what life would look like without Chris nor do I want to think about it. Things like this really make you appreciate significant others. I absolutely love my husband with all my heart. It's the healthiest relationship that I have ever been it. It's a balanced, whole hearted life. It's funny but I have never felt this way with anyone. I guess that's why I married him. I love our life, our relationship, our home, and our cats. It makes me think about how fortunate I am in life to have such a blessed life. This Thursday is our anniversary...4 years really go by quick!

I started thinking last week that I needed to work on living in the moment more. There are times that I am so future orientated or past, that I'm not grounded in the present. While it is great to have these wonderful future goals, it's also important to be grounded in the present so life is not passing you by. I definitely need to work on that. Just looking at life on a daily basis, not the weekly where you are just so focused on making to the weekend.

The workout program is still amazing. Chris and I hit the Y 4 times last week. 45 minutes of cardio with one strength training. They want us to bump it up now to 45 minutes 4x a week and 3 x a week of strength...argh, that's a lot but we love it. I didn't see a loss today but my clothes are fitting better. I'll take that.

Monday, October 06, 2008

Oktoberfest in Amana, Iowa

Another killer weekend!

We went to Amana, Iowa this past weekend for Oktoberfest and it was awesome! I love Iowa. The people are terrific. I've always heard that the south takes the cake for hospitality but they cannot beat the people in Iowa. Everyone is so nice. I think Iowa gets a bad reputation but it's a gorgeous state and worth a visit. This was our second year in a row to visit the Amana Colonies and it was terrific. Funny thing is that Dateline NBC was taping while we were there. They were doing a story on unclaimed money. So we might be on TV. Another huge surprise that we had is that we were upgraded twice, once on the rental car and another on the room. We usually rent a car when we go 3 hours out to keep the mileage off our own car. So I reserved an intermediate car from Budget. When they got there, they didn't have any on the lot so they gave us a Seabring with XM radio...nice. Then we go to check into our room and they noted that they had an issue with the room so they upgraded us to a 1 bedroom suite condo. It was brand new with a flat screen, full kitchen, couch, chair, table, and deck! It usually went for $180ish a night and we got it for $90...unbelievable. I made some better food choices this year compared to last but I could have done a tad better eating wise. I did have a cherry turnover and one brat but last year I ate bad all weekend long and this wasn't the case this weekend. Being in the condo helped us cook a healthy breakfast too. I whopped up some scrambled eggs with minimal yoke, spinach, chicken sausage, and a dash of cheese. Plus we tracked our food so that was an amazing feat anyways.

The one thing that I am happy about is that we exercised this weekend...something we didn't do the year before. My foot was finally back to 95% so we took a 90 minute walk. It feels great to have back my proper mobility because I was limping for the majority of the week. I have to remember that I'm not that young anymore where if I push myself so hard, it will be forgiven the next day. It's like it will be forgiven the next week. It didn't help when we were at Mackinaw, I heated the foot instead of icing it. Argh, I learned my lesson there. Looking back, I definitely would have taken our bikes or rented them on Saturday because I over did it so much, I didn't get to enjoy the hotel like I should have. Which is a total bummer because there's a ton of things there but because I chose to over do it, I paid the price.

So after my 4lb gain last week, I am down to 192 :) It was a good week. The trainers are bumping the workout up. They are encouraging us to workout 4 times a week for 45 minutes high intensity. This is awesome but Chris and I need to make some time for the two extra days that we need to get. There's just never enough time...which stinks. We're already getting home late plus doing this 4 times a week is challenging but of course worth it. We just need to commit. Unfortunately, nothing ever comes easy.

Oh, hey are right that Chris has gained some weight. When we first met, he was about 172 and unfortunately our relationship, his microbrew drinking, lack of excercise, and change of career made him gain the weight and hit the scales at 235. Thus, he is the only male in our move it to lose it class. I keep on hearing from the ladies in the group how awesome it is to have my husband in the group because theirs would never come. What a shame!

Monday, September 22, 2008

What a weekend!

It was a terrific weekend. It was my turn to plan the anniversary weekend so I booked us a room at The Grand Hotel on Mackinac Island. We stayed in Mackinaw City on Friday night and then left for the Island at 8:30 am. We arrived there and we hit the trail. We walked all over that island and found nearly 50 caches, on foot. We then hit the hotel around 5:30 and I was totally beat from the hike. So we rested a bit and then hit dinner. At the Grand, you have to be in a suit and dress so it was fun to dress up. The service was amazing and everyone was so nice. The hotel exceded my expectations. So here are some pics from the weekend.
The one thing that I have learned from the weekend though is pacing yourself. I needed to really work up to that 15 miles because I am paying the price now. My left foot is killing me and I think I strained it. It also reminded my on why I am working on losing weight. Chris and I have the passion for exploring/hiking but we don't have the bodies for it right now. Let me rephrase that, maybe I don't have the body. Chris is doing okay, I'm the one that needs to be strengthened. The class was really good tonight. Our trainer Carly gave us the food wheel. I have no idea on where she got it but it's really awesome. It breaks down what you should be eating based on Carbs, Protein, and Fats. It describes what are excellent, good, fair, poor food choices and how to spend your calories wisely. As I looked at the wheel, I started to think of how I need to set myself up for more success. My freezer is looking okay but my refrigerator needs to be stocked better with some wiser choices. That just takes time and how do you properly weed out your old foods without wasting? Any ideas? I have some pantry stuff that I could donate but the foods in the refrigerator/freezer, I worry about.

I have the body age of what?

Part of the "move it to lose it" is a body assessment. I got mine done today and there were no real surprising results except, I am out of shape. My body age is 44 and I'm only 33! My flexibility is very poor and I need to strengthen it, cardio needs to be increased, as well as strength. My percentage of body fat is like a big mac...39.2% yikes....not so kind. I have to say that this program is the best program I have ever been a part of. Chris and I are digging it. The program is part of the YMCA and we are hoping that my basic flex will cover the cost of the class but it was well worth the $500 that we are paying. (Anji...I don't have your email so please pass it too me. Miss you!). The insight from the trainers is amazing and so far, it's not boring, and accountability is high. They want us to work out about 4 times per week at a medium intensity level. Chris and I noticed that it is easier to get to the Y when we plan ahead.

The interesting thing that I learned tonight is that I haven't been eating enough. The trainer Carly noted that my 1250 average is too low and she would like to see me increase my daily intake to about 1500-1600. Chris is also running too low so his calories need to increase also. The strange thing about calories, it is actually hard to increase them in a healthy manner. I can increase them in a not so positive way but to do it in a healthy manner is hard. I'll work on that.

Things are going well here. The fall is my favorite time of year. I'm planning a surprise getaway for Chris and I so I'm looking forward to that. Eating wise, we definitely need to think about making healthy options because there are some major temptations were we are going. I'm hoping that the activity level will offset it. We just need to think smart. I can do that!

Monday, September 15, 2008

Funniest switch-a-roo...

Chris and I had our first class tonight for the Move it to Lose it program and we had a good laugh about it. So I get there and Chris is already there where we were supposed to be. When I talked to the trainer he noted that he would be over by chairs on the 3rd floor. So there were tons of people there and the trainer walks over and introduces himself and we sign in. He then notes "okay, just walk around the track for 15 minutes to get your heart rate up" so we do that. We rejoin the group and he breaks us into 3's. One group being the cardio, then core, and finally strength. I went to the core and Chris went to the cardio. The trainer was amazing. I did some crunches on the ball and it was awesome, along with a plank exercise, and then a movement with the legs for the abs. The second round was 10 minutes on the treadmill with the goal to burn 60-80 calories. When I was on the treadmill, the woman asked when did I start the product. I noted that I just started and she just went "oh". I ran for 4 minutes, this in itself is a feat. After the working out, we go into the instruction. We follow the others up and Chris gets there and notes that the guy accross from me lost 58 pounds! Wow, then the lady kitty corner lost 65 in 20 weeks. I'm thinking amazing...this move it to lose it program is utterly impressive. So as we move around the room, everyone is sharing their success. Chris and I are dumbfounded. Then it's my turn to introduce myself and I explained why I am there. To eat healthier, lose weight so I can have a healthier pregnancy for when I do get pregnant, etc. She then noted "what is your diagnosis?" I noted, "well, according to the FIT, I am obese". Then she asked Chris what he was doing there and he stated "to get back into working out". Then she asked, "well your not our typical people. You two look really good". Then the woman kitty corner to us notes "Wait, you're supposed to be in that other program". I asked, "What program, the move it to lose it?" "Yeah, I saw the trainer take them away when everyone was out at the chairs. There were so many people. You're in the Victory Weightloss Group right now". So we got our groups mixed up. We laughed about it and they said that we could stay into the group. We learned about weightloss myths and I got a 98% on the test. They were a great group of people. Too bad we don't get to stick with them. They were super motivating. We talked to the YMCA people and we're hooking up with our proper group on Wednesday...Chris and I never laughed so hard about the mix up. Good communication goes a long way.

Saturday, September 13, 2008

A rainy Saturday...

I sometimes love a rainy Saturday. Our typical Saturdays lately have consisted of running errands, going to the relatives boat, socializing, cleaning the home, working outside, etc. I'm usually up by 7:00 but when it's raining out I sleep in. It was so nice this morning to just relax and not have the need to get up and moving. I fully took advantage of it. I made my usual Saturday breakfast of biscuits, eggs (beaters for me), and a piece of bacon. I was proud of my over easy for eggs for Chris but after discussing it, he always thought that overeasy meant sunny side up. Opps! We don't have too much going on this weekend. Later today we are going to a suprise birthday party. Never been to one before so that's going to be interesting. Our healthy eating plan is that we are going to eat before going rather than sit there and gooble up all the party food. Party food is a weekness so hopefully this will work. Other than that...we get to relax.

Last night we redeemed our free dinner coupons at Noodles & Company and Coldstone. They have birthday clubs so they send you a free offer on your birthday. I love Noodles & Company. I'm additcted to the Chicken Penne Rosa and Chris loves the Chicken Pad Thai. Then we headed over to Coldstone. The one thing I have to say about Coldstone is that I only go there once a year for my birthday ice cream. It's totally unhealthy and the prices are insane. In this day in age, I cannot rationalize paying $4.20+ for a Love It Size Creation. If I do have the craving for ice cream, it's much better to scoot my bottom down to the store and picky up some Edy's light. The one good thing is that I don't crave sweets...the downfall is that I like salty crunchy things like potato chips so I need to keep those out of the house. My two lowfat chip loves are Flat Earth chips and Kettle Bakes (from Costco, oh so good! 3g Fat and 2g Fiber per serving).

I'm ready for my brain to return. I feel like the last few months have been a fog because I've been involved with learning a therapy technique for the past year and it's getting to the end now. I'm just so focused on this therapy, it's not even funny how much it has taken over the brain. I've spent 124 hours classroom time, over 60 hours of supervision, and that's just the beggining of what I have done. It's funny when I was going into the training I heard the trainers noted that the majority of your brain space will be taken over by this, I thought they were joking. Well, they were not. It's been an amazing learning experience and I've become a much better therapist but I am so looking forward to getting my certification so things can return to normal where all of this space in my brain can go towards other things.

Speaking of other things, Chris and I are officially signed up for the move to lose it program. Our first meeting is next week. We're both looking forward to it. I think it will be a lot of fun and you can't beat working out with some personal trainers. At least it will get us into a routine. Now I just have to figure out what we'll do for dinner because we have to be there at 6pm (that's usually when we get home). Maybe leftovers? We'll see.

Tuesday, September 09, 2008

It's my birthday!

I'm the big 33 today! I look damn good, no makeup or hair dye needed yet. I took the day off because I never work on my birthdays. Birthday's are almost like a new years for me because it brings about a resolution to change. I have a few resolutions so I'm looking forward to an excellent year.

Today is a really good day. I saw my folks, they took me out to lunch and we had a terrific time. That was an awesome birthday present just to see them. The window guy came over and we're getting our four windows in the front replaced. They will be here in about 7 weeks. I am so looking forward to getting the windows, it's not even funny. See how bad they are? I think the only thing holding them is the putty. So by Halloween, we will have four new windows. The only bad thing about getting them in late fall is that the kitties will not be able to lay in the open windows, it will be too cold for them. I have to say that I love my cats. I never thought that I would love a cat as much as I do, but they are terrific. They make me smile every day.

In making healthy choices, Chris and I opted to stay in for our birthdays (his was yesterday). I made him a mean Mahattan Clam Chowder last night. It tasted great. Tonight, we're just going to have some left overs. Yeah, we could spend some money to go out but I much prefer staying in and eating a terrific meal. The one thing about the wii fit is that it really tracks your weight. We've noticed that M-F we eat very well but on the weekends, we tend to gain because we are off schedule. I've signed us up for the "Move it to Lose it" program at the local Y. It starts next week and we're really looking forward to it. Chris would like to lose about 30-40 pounds and I would like to lose about 20. Heck, I will take 10 pounds at this time. I like my body but I need to eat and be healthier for the future. We're doing good on the hiking. On Saturday, I didn't meet up with the group because we had a million errands to run but we did hit a local park and did some hiking for about 2 hours. I love hiking in's such a great time of year.

Funny thing we were discussing over lunch is that I realized I'm a picky eater. I never really considered myself a picky eater but after chatting with my mom, it was like, "oh, yeah, I guess I am". I guess I always condsidered picky eaters are people who are not willing to try things. I like a full range of foods but there some of the foods that I should eat but don't. I like fresh fruits from the farmers markets but not from the grocery store because it doesn't have that great taste. Chris can eat a ton of fruit. I always like the odd things like asparagus, brocolli, brussel sprouts, cauliflower, squash. I hate mellon, sweat potatoes, and tomatoes. For chicken, it's got to be the breast only. Humm, I guess I am picky. I'll have to do something about the fruit thing.

Thursday, September 04, 2008

It's never a good idea to google...

I found this's never really a good idea to google people you used to know. I was curious about the my elementary school friends to see if they were on the net and I found two of them. The two turned out simply amazing. One is an environmental lawyer who graduated at the top of her class at George Washington University. The other is high ranking official at the peace corps. Amazing!

Then I got thinking why in the heck did my parents move me from that school district? I remember them stressing out about how difficult the high school was and how they needed to move out to the country. Funny thing is that my early years of school were challenging at times but wonderful. It was like this little safe haven that was created in a progressive town outside of Detroit. It was idealic where the community raised the child. We had computers in the school in 1980. I learnd math on an Apple Computer. When we moved out to the country in 1986, the schools were "rich" but they lacked what my former schools had. The new country school was rough, the 5th graders were boy crazy and wearing makeup. The 6th grade was even worse. I remember moving into the country school in the middle of 5th grade and it being absolutely painful. I went from a small child to being a very large child in six months. That's when the weight settled in. Looking back, hell, I must have been depressed. Having the house burn down at the end of fourth grade, then moving mid year to a hick school in fifth grade, argh. What really made me think about it is what I want my future to look like. I'm pretty mindful that I don't ever want to move during my child's education. I know it worked very well for the folks but it didn't work as nicely for me emotionally. I never felt like I had a true home after leaving the Detroit area. It wasn't until we bought that house that I felt settled. It also made me think about the school for the future kidos. The school district that I live in is known for having strong elementeries and middle school programs but the high school is rough. Is that the same idea that my parents thought? I cringe at thinking of sending my future offspring to a rough school but looking at my former classmates, well, they did well. Then it got me thinking about my life for a few moments of "wow, look what I've done" (in a blah tone) but then looking at Chris, my home, my cats (yeah my cats) I felt like I did okay. It's funny how googling can make you rethink your life for a few moments and the "what if's"

Wednesday, September 03, 2008

Wow, the's been...

The mojo is's feeling terrific. This excitement about being healthy is definitely what I have been missing. Chris actually helped me get my butt back in gear with the help of the Wii Fit. We got the system back in July after hearing about Chris's cousin raving about the fit for hours and it really had us intrigued so when we got back, I was able to find it online. When we got it, we just used the fit a few times but about three weeks ago, Chris got hooked and he's been doing the fit for a half an hour every night. I would do it here and there but I've been doing consistently for the past week and so far, it's terrific. Now, I know it's not to supplement a real work out but it definitely helps. I'm officially not obese anymore! I'm just overweight. My BMI was a 29.90. I'll take that.

We went hiking for a solid 3 hours the other day at a cool park down the road. This weekend we're planning on hooking up with my hiking group that I joined back in May for a hike this weekend. Plus we'll do some additional hiking because we're going to do some caching. We're also joining a 10 week class at the Y in a few weeks so we are going to be looking fab soon. There's something about fall that usually motivates me, so it's nice to get back into the grove of things.

My newest obsession is making my own whole wheat pasta. Last Friday, I found the Kitchen Aid mixer pasta attachments for 60% off at the Meijer outlet. I have been desiring this set for ages but for $180, I said "pass". But when I say it at the outlet, I sprung into action. I even got another $10 off because I asked the manager for a discount and he went for it. Last night was my first attempt. I took a cup of whole wheat flour and 1/2 cup of egg beaters and it came out pretty good for my first attempt. The noodles were thick so I'll have to work on making them thinner. At least now I have a use for the six pound bag of whole wheat flour I bought at the amish store. It's been sitting in my cabinet for months and I had no clue on using it because the recipe that I originally bought it for tanked.

The birthdays are next week. Chris and I are a day apart. He's turning 36 and I'm turning 33. I'm okay with the 33. Initially the thought of turning 33 was a tad bit scary but I'm up for it. I think it's going to be a good year. Take care all-Kellie

Wednesday, August 20, 2008

Hi, my name is Kellie and I have...

Hello, my name is Kellie and somewhere along the way, I lost my mojo. Can you help me find it? Oh, please, can you?

The last few months have been a blur. Not a bad blur but just a blur, like time is passing by so quickly that it scares me. I'm turning 33 next month, 33. I think it started to freak me out a few weeks ago that I am turning this age. It was fine to hit 30, heck, I was looking forward to it. But this 33 is freaking me out. I think I've been doing some inward self inspection. There are things that I need to change, but don't want to. I, Kellie, have been lazy all summer, I haven't counted points since March, and I feel...well, terrible about it. I say I want to commit to myself but then, the choices I make, well, they suck. It's not like I am going out and eating with all abadonment, but it's lost little tiny choices that I make everyday that add up to were I am now. I'm up to 188. The heaviest that I have been in years. This is because my laziness and lack of trying, I know that. I am accountable to it. I keep asking myself where is my motivation? Where's that mojo of mine? I need to change, but how? I have a couple of solutions but I need to make the changes. It's me...and I hate this feeling. People that have been here in this spot, understand where I am at. I have two options, give in, not care (which I have been doing for years, really) or put up a fight, start on the right track. I want to fight but my choices have been the lazy route.

So that's where I am at. Looking for motivation, finding some inner strength to get my "poop in a group". I want to do it again, but I find myself asking, how can I?

Thanks for listening...

Friday, May 02, 2008

There's something about looking back....

I was browsing through my old website and I noticed a few things. For example, I was pretty angry for quite a while about my high school experience. Funny thing looking back now as a 32 year old who is not angry about it, just saddened that I'm not the person who I was 5, 10, 15 years ago. There's an amazing leep that I've seen even in the past three years in myself. That makes me sort of wonder why does growth only occur via age and experience? Too bad I wasn't zapped with that knowledge many years ago but then wait, I wouldn't be the person I am today, nor the person I will be tomorrow.

A few months ago I went shopping with a few of my older friends from Curves and we were talking about self esteem. The majority of these women were 40-50. All of them reported continued daily struggles with self-esteem. That made me sad but then I thanked God for feeling comfortable in my skin. I don't go through those daily struggles of negative self talk, I was at that spot 10 years ago but I love where I am today. Now that's growth because there's no room in my life for negativity like that. There's something to that positive self talk and not letting the negatives come in and seep into your core.

I've been doing this awesome therapy training for positive parenting therapy for the past six months and it's also had a huge impact on me. One of my fellow trainee's gave me a huge complement today because we were talking about motherhood. She's 50 and has 3 girls ranging from 18-23. She noted to me "Gosh Kellie, you're amazing with your skills. I wishe I would have had your skills when I was your age. You are so going to set your future children up for success". I laughed and shared about my petrifying feelings about nurturing a young infant/baby and noted "I KNOW I can raise a teen ager but those babies scare the heck out of me". She laughed and noted "You got what it takes". Nice to hear that once in a while.

Monday, April 07, 2008

It feels like money...

Lately it feels like money is just sliding out of my pockets. I was totally on empty today so I fueled my gas hogging Jeep Wrangler up and it was a whopping $55. This will last me 2.5 days. I remembered in grad school when I lived in Louisville, I paid 76 cents for gas, now I'm paying $3.32 a gallon. I've been pondering if the Jeep needs to go lately. The only thing that is keeping me from selling it is that it is paid off, I've maintained it nicely, and we have a small sail boat (that has not seen water in two years). I'm been secretly desiring to buy a small shitkicker but the only downfall of that, is that I don't want to buy a used junker that is questionable. Though, driving 105 miles per day myself and Chris is driving 120 miles is getting me to think about some other car options. We hit $760 for gas last month and we didn't take any trips. I got all excited thinking that we were going to save some major money this month but then the brakes on the jeep were going so we shelled out $600 for brakes but at least we had the money to pay for it in cash without touching the savings. It just seems like since the first of the year, we've been sending out a ton of money with property taxes, car insurance, etc. Plus vacation is only three months away so I would like to have some extra pocket change for the trip. At least we don't have any credit card debt! I learned in my 20s to stay away from that kind of debt.

I feel pretty bummed for my sister. She was attempting to get into grad school for speech pathology but she was waitlisted. Hopefully, a spot will open up for her. It's been 8 years since she's been out of school. She graduated the top student out of her class so I was suprised to her that she was waitlisted. At least she didn't get rejected but if she doesn't get a spot, hopefully she will try again. My mom said that there was over 200 applicants for the 32 spots. So send her some positive thoughts. I know that things happen for a reason but it would be nice to see her go back to school so that she could get her masters. Thank God I got my masters when I did. I would strongly urge those who need to go on for their career to do it while their young because when you get older you have too many responsibilities. I couldn't imagine going back to school at this point in my life. So I give people a lot of credit who do it with kids and a full time job.

I ate 26 points 3 of tracking...just 21 more days to make it a habit, right? I'm heading in the right direction....take care all-Kellie

Sunday, April 06, 2008

Love this feeling....

I love spring. I truly do. Nothing is better than the sun shinning brightly, a warm breeze, and the feeling that the snow is over. DH and I travelled over to Lansing yesterday and it was amazing. We drove by the campus of Michigan State and people were sprawling on the grass, throwing ball, etc. Seeing that sparked the feeling of winter is finally over and spring is going to be in full force.

Today we get to do some spring cleaning. Our duties today is to rake the remaining leaves on the lawn and do some general clean up. I'm trying to convince Chris to rent us a small dumpster to get ride of some of the yard waste that we didn't focus on last year. Our back yard is pretty funky. We live on an incline and in our back yard we have some flat space but then we have a 12 foot hill with an incline. Future plans for the hill include a Pagoda type structure, a small pond, and some other landscaping. That's a few years out but we still our planning. The most immediate thing we need to do is to get some new windows and insulation. We finally get to start saving some money this money because nothing major is going to be going out. We just put brakes on the jeep so there no big forecasted expensives coming up until vacation. Thanks to the stinking stimulus package, we're going on vacation with that so it's not going to impact the budget. We were going to buy a video camera for the trip but I think we are going to hold off on that until the technology price comes down (Chris wants a sony 60gb HD video camera that is running about $1K at Costco...I say wait on that).

The weight is staying put (which is awesome) and I'm tracking my points for the second day in a row. I've been trying to be more mindful of what I put in my mouth. For instance, yesterday, I could have completely gorged myself. We hit the Michigan Brewing Company and I was very good. Chris tried some brews out and I tasted. Prior to going to the brewig company, we stopped a nice but strange restaurant in Okemos (a small town outside of East Lansing). It was called "The Travelers Club" which was a tuba museum and a restaurant that had food inspired from all over the world. He had a few samples of their brew and I ate a delicious Greek salad instead of picking the Indian meal complete with a mango lassi...

We hit the gym 3 times this week and it was exciting. I think that it's getting darker later in the night, makes it easier. I'm still in a quandry about the curves place so we'll see where that goes. Working out there has been a complete time challenge lately and I don't know if it's going to be any better. Summer will be more flexible on my schedule because I won't have to put up with the after school appointments because everyone will be home. Well that's it for me today because we have a busy day! Take care all-Kellie

Wednesday, April 02, 2008

Slowly finding the mojo...

I am slowly finding my mojo back. Darn, that trip to Kalamazoo! It totally threw me off course and it's taken me forever to get back on. I think I used almost every excuse in the book of why I haven't been feeling like exercising. For instance, "Oh, I am working late" or "Chris is sick" or my favorite one is "Oh, my energy is completely gone". Last week, we made it to the gym once but then Saturday we went out Geocaching around Muskegon near the lakeshore. The one thing about living in West Michigan that is wonderful is all the access to the beaches. We found two caches in Muskegon State Park and they were wonderful. The trails were awesome but as I was walking around, I was very aware of how out of shape I have become. It was a sad realization that I could definitely not reframe. It felt good though to be back on the trail. I'm looking forward to being outside this summer. We have the house exactly where it will not need any work so we can focus our energy on maintenance and having fun. We haven't camped in years either so it's definitely a goal this year to grab the tent and do some exploring. Geocaching is awesome. If you have a GPS, there is no excuse on not using it for some fun. The positive thing about caching is that it takes you to some awesome spots that you would never know about. Like this weekend, when we went out to the park, we hike about 1.5 miles and the views were stunning. When we go on vacation, we're always grabbing our GPS to take us to spots. There are several favorite sports that caching has taken me. My number one spot was looking at Sun Island at Glacier National Park in WY. The other was in DC where they had a spot with all of the individuals who signed the Declaration of Independence. We would have never known about it unless we were caching.

I found out last week that my Curves owners is sold the club. I know that things have been tight but I was so sad to hear this. I was happy that they were able to sell without just closing it but I'm so sad that they are not going to be running it anymore. It kept me accountable and now I found out that they are also losing the whole staff because the new owner is bring in her own people. It's ladies will be broken up. We're planning on keeping in touch but I feel it will be like that for a while, then we will part ways. Goes back to my transitional friend theory. I have this theory about friends. People are in your life for a certain time and they exit your life accordingly. I'm very cautious when it comes to friend. My best girl friend is Teresa and she is probably in my life because when I exited her's she did such a good job of keeping in touch with me. Besides that, the only women I feel close to are my curves acquaintances. My coworkers on my team are awesome but I always keep a distance because I'm afraid to blur the lines there. I sometimes wonder why I don't have too many close friends but to tell you the truth, I'm okay with it. People burn me out. I'm very skilled clinician and put 110% into my job and meeting the "client of where they are at" and then to deal with people like that are high mantinence in my personal life? No thank you. That's why I loved the ladies at Curves. They were non-draining positive people and this is a rarity in my life to have people like that in my life. So when I heard the ladies were selling the club, I was sort of crushed. I feel sad about losing part of my support network and I truly hope that they are not a part of my transitional friend theory. There are people that stay in touch, right?

Sunday, March 16, 2008

Life is...

Life has been pretty quiet lately, which is good. There's every little day stuff that happens but rarely do I get down to post about it. I find little things everyday that I wish I could post but by the time I have the time, it's like puff, it's gone.

I'm happy that spring is around the corner. The winter was tough, especially commuting an hour to work, which seemed like 75% of February was a two hour commute...but at least I have a job. I don't think I was mentally prepared for this winter. Between Chris and I, we had about 5 great falls. Luckily, no broken bones. We had countless attempts to make it up our drive with no luck. One time his car went down the drive in park and went parallel to the sidewalk and a good neighbor helped pull Chris out. To top it all off, Chris flipped the Jeep on Christmas eve and thank goodness he was okay. So needless to say, I'm ready to say goodbye to the winter and hello to Spring.

We have a couple of things cooking for this spring and summer. We might go up to Mackinaw Island and stay at the Grand Hotel opening weekend and then we are planning a trip out east to and on the fourth of July we are going to be in DC watching the fireworks so I'm looking forward to that. We're planning the trip around the mandatory graduation party for Chris's cousin who is graduating from high school. The kid is amazing...he was on Jeopardy when he was in 5th grade, already has a full ride to anywhere he would like, and he applied to Princeton, John Hopkins, and Yale. He's never experienced what a B is...which makes me think why on earth would he like to be clumped into all the best out of the best? He's going to be devastated if he's not number one. Two years ago when we stayed at their house, I found a goal sheet that the kid made. He was 15 and he discussed how he wants inner peace and to enjoy the true nature that surrounds him. When I was 15, I have no idea what I was thinking, wait, I was thinking about the wonder this kid is a genius. What 15 year old thinks about this. To even have a global perspective at a young age is amazing. Chris has an interesting extended family unit. The majority of them do very well in life. His cousin who lives in DC worked for the navy on the subs then entered civilian life and now he is running his own company. His wife is an engineer at NASA. These are just a few examples. My family is different and to tell you the truth, I wouldn't have it any other way though. Plus another thing about his family is that they all live in great places. He has an aunt in Alaska, a cousin in DC, another cousin in Delaware, etc. so we have places to stay out east and west.

Weight wise, I've been messing up the last three weeks. I totally had an awesome groove going in but just when I hit my stride, I lost my mojo. I need to get back to journaling and all that good stuff. I got comfortable. Honestly, sometimes it is difficult to lose weight when you find yourself okay. I like my body the way it is. I know losing 30 pounds is essential but to tell you the truth, it is hard to get into the mindset when you think you look good. Unfortunately, one of my best skills that I have is positively reframing things and this can sometimes be a barrier to weightloss, I swear. If I found myself miserable to look at, I might have more fire under my bum but I'm okay with myself. Though, this is not helping in the area of losing weight to eventually have a kid. I don't want to way this much when we go try to produce some offspring so maybe I need to focus on that. Now that's an idea!

Sunday, February 03, 2008

I think I'm obessed with my...

I, Kellie, am obessed with my crockpot. Oh, crockpot how I adore thee. For the past 3 weeks, I have done at least 3 meals a week in the crock...and the crock is kicking out some superior meals. Some favorites I've done is a flank steak/taco rub mixe with salsa verde, white chicken chili, chicken casserole, and my absolutely to die for chicken curry. Oh, it was lick the plate yummy. My passion lately has been cooking meals. I've always enjoyed cooking to tell you the truth. My first cooking attempts came at the ripe age of 5 and since then I've always loved to cook. I hate baking but cooking is something that I look forward to do. With using the crockpot, I'm able to come home at night and not worry about scrambling to get dinner done. I checked a few books out at the library to help me with some ideas because I have a lot of recipes but I like diversity. My cooking is pretty diverse in nature. I love cooking more meals like meditterean, indian, thai, chinese, brittsh, etc. I'm not a meat n' taters type of gal. My philosphy on cooking is that I want to feel like I'm eating out the majority of time. Cooking a diverse menu helps with that and it helps saves money in the long run because we don't eat out as much as I would be inclined to do. I'm the type of person that would rather have a nice meal out than a new top or outfit. So in order to combat this urge, I cook well.

I hit WW again this past week and I'm down another .8! I'm so happy aboout this. I'm feeling good and the one think about WW is that it's always slow and steady for me. In my hx of weightloss, I don't think I truly ever had a "BIG" week. It's usually a pound and under. I feel great about it because I know my behaviors are back on track. Where I was getting stuck in the past few years was with the lack of tracking points. It's amazing how many points you can shove into your mouth without even know....thank God for E-tools, it is keeping me very mindful about the choices I am making.

I've been in a reading mode lately. My latest read is: Final Exits, the illustrated encloypedia on how we die. It's a quarky book and a must read for those who like odd facts. For instance, I never knew that Presiden Zachary Taylor died from aresinic poisioning. At a fourth of July celebration near the Washington monument, they invited people to cook for the president and 3 days later he passed away. another fun fact, about 2300 people die from pushing too hard in the bathroom. So be sure to get your fiber don't want to die from that :) Have a terrific day all-Kellie

Thursday, January 31, 2008

House pics finally!

Oh, the joys of West Michigan weather...

Please please let it be April soon. I don't think I can put up with anymore snow. We had a bad storm pass through the other night. In 6 hours it went from 47 degrees (it did not feel like it) to 9 (which felt much colder). I know it's personal choice to live in Michigan but I hate cold weather. It was so bad yesterday that my work closed for the first time since 2002. I made up my mind at 6am (actually my mind was made up the night before) that I wasn't going to make the 52 mile commute to work. It would have taken me 2-3 hours to get up there. Luckily, they called it a closure at 8 am. Tonight we're supposed to get slammed again. It's looking like a foot of snow by tomorrow night. Urgh!

Thank goodness Chris and I have good jobs or I would be questioning why we stay here. Well, family keeps us tied here too. I still love Michigan. It's a beautiful place, nice beaches, lots of beautiful landscape, and diversity amongst the state. Unfortunately, we're hit with a nasty recession. Detroit sounds like it's a mess and the jobless rate continues to rise. The only way I would lose my job was if I did something stupid or my agency lost it's contract. Chris works for a strong company who is hiring people left and right. But even then, he has been forced out of a field due to the economy and he's had to go into a career that is not what he went to school for. I ask him periodically if he misses being a pilot but he notes he hasn't but I always worry if he is honest about that. He was passionate about being a pilot since the 5th grade. I never had passion like that. I wanted to be a lawyer when I was younger, then in high school, I wanted to be a speech pathologist. I got to college and after talking to a school rep they noted that my grades wouldn't be high enough for graduate school so I didn't even try. I kind of regret that now. I explored being in business, then a business teacher, and then finally after looking at my piss poor grades, the only thing I did well at was my human behavior class, which I had my one and only A. I thought then "Ah, I get this social work thing. Maybe I should be a social worker" thus my road to being a social worker. Funny thing in high school when I took my ACT, it noted that I was bust suited for being a social worker. At that time, I was like "no way I want to work with people like that"...funny how things change. I love being a social worker...I really do. There's a lot of positive things that come out of doing my job but then there is a lot of sad...lots of sad...lots and lots of sad...that people have had exposure to in their young life. Every once in a while, I cry about my kids that I work with(this is something I don't share with others because I know all of us workers have been there), hoping that things change or life gets better. The thing about being a worker is that you have to accept that you are a farmer. You plant some seeds and you hope they grow, so do, some lie dormant but there is always hope.

I had my dentist appointment today. I have to tell you that I get excited for my dentist. I absolutely love that place and getting out of work early on a Thursday is freaking awesome. I had plans of cooking Chris an elaborate italian meal but I'm going to whip up some crab cakes tonight. I'm kicking butt with WW. I'm losing slowly but steadily and I, Kellie, have logged ALL my points for the past that rocks. Have a terrific day and take care-Kellie

Saturday, January 26, 2008

My computer is finally back!

January 26th, 2008

If I have learned something over the past two months, it is to back up! The same time I was posting the last entry, I was browsing my favorite gossip site and it gave my computer a nasty virus that sent me spyware glore so I just got full access back today. Chris had been working on backing up everything so it took forever. I thought I lost some of my pictures but luckily Chris's friend gave him a program that saved the pics so I was relieved.

Lots of stuff has been happening but the most exciting thing is that we adopted two shelter cats. We resuced them from the animal shelter. The weird thing about the animal shelter is that it's located next to the county jail so we sprung out kitties out! Both are around two years old. The male who is a tiger is named Bolton and the other is a female naked Forest (she has Forest Whitakers eyes) but I nick named her "baby gurl". I never would have thought that owning cats was so rewarding. I've really become attached to them so much and I love them so. Aren't they cuties? Chris was being mean with Forest by teasing her with some food. I thought this picture was so funny.

As for weight, the holidays were a tad bit challenging. I hit my recent all time high of 191, which scared the crap out of me. So I started logging my points, that's a new concept! Yeah, it's neen actual years since I have faithfully logged points so I was able to do it for a month already and I'm down four pounds for the month. I finally found a leader who is motivating and staff who don't say a darn word at the weigh in (good or bad) and I'm hooked. I still need to work on the working out thing but I'm averaging about 3x per week. Twice at Curves and then on Fridays, Chris and I play badmiton at the Y. I would ideally like to go back to swimming but the snow ticks me off and the cold so my target date to start back at the pool is March 1st.

In order to set myself up for success, I've been cooking a lot of crock pot meals. I do some menu planning the day before and I plot out my dinner. It's so nice to come home to a cooked meal without asking or hearing, what's for dinner? I've got a few favorites so I'm hooked. Tomorrow I'm cooking a chicken verde in the crockpot so I'm looking forward to that. I got the recipe out of a Betty Crocker Slow Cooker Cookbook that I checked out at the library. I hate boring food so I always try to spice things up a bit. Last week I made a scallop thai soup and it was to die for. Chris rated it a 10 (which is difficult to get) so he keeps on asking when am I going to make it again. The thing about cooking a good meal is that it makes me feel like I'm eating out and that's all I need to keep statisified.

Things are good, life is good but busy so I'm always searching for that balance. I would like to get meet a few people so DH and I are going to start to attend the local methodist church in a few weeks. It's a pretty progressive church and I've downloaded their sermons and it's sounding good. Well, that's it for me. Take care, Kellie