Thursday, October 30, 2008

Blizzards and Lattes

These are my two major cravings right now.

First, a bit of background. I have been seriously dieting since Labor Day. As my 40th birthday looms ever closer, I have finally, I believe, found the resolve to lose all this extra weight that keeps finding me. I lost 60 pounds about 6 years ago, and despite swearing I would never, ever, gain it back, I regained 50 of the pounds before getting pregnant, and hit a weight during my pregnancy that I thought I would never see (but pregnancy pounds don't count, right? So I never "actually" weighed that much...)

After Monkey was born, I quickly dropped a little over half of the pregnancy weight. But a few months later, I was still 15 pounds above my pre-pregnancy weight. Over the next year, I yo-yo'd a bit, and managed to lose those pounds, as well as five more, but then I just sort of got stuck. Until Labor Day, when my husband and I resolved to eat healthier and drop the extra weight. (My husband, sweetheart that he is, had graciously gained some "sympathy weight" with me during my pregnancy, which, he learned to his dismay, does not drop quite as quickly and with as little effort due to the fact that he did not produce a child from his body at the end of nine months).

And it's working. My husband has lost close to 30 pounds, and I cam coming up on a 20-pound milestone, hopefully very soon. I hope to lose another 10 before year-end, and ideally another 30 (although I'll settle for 15) in the first few months of next year, before the big birthday.

But I can't say I'm entirely happy... I LOVE that my clothes are big on me, that I actually FEEL thinner, and all that good stuff. But MAN do I miss food! And that brings me to the subject of this post. Not a day goes by where I don't drive by Dairy Queen and/or Starbucks, and I can just hear those Blizzards and Lattes calling out to me, inviting me to just pull my car into the handy drive-thru lane and have a little taste. With Blizzards, it's the Oreo, Heath bar, and Reese's varieties that are calling to me. As for lattes, I'm partial to the white chocolate mocha, although it's getting to be that time of year when peppermint and peppermint white chocolate will be on the menu "for a limited time only" to make me drool.

Now, I'm doing the Weight Watchers plan, so these foods aren't totally forbidden to me. But if you know anything about WW, you know they use the "points" system, where you can only consume so many points per day (based on age, height, weight, and activity level), and once they're gone, you're out of luck (with exceptions, but I've found that the best way to lose weight is not to use those exceptions too often). In my case, I get 23 points a day. Well, my friends, a DQ Oreo Blizzard is 13 points - yep - well over half of my daily allotment. A tall white chocolate mocha isn't nearly as bad - I think 5 or 6 points? But did I mention how good it tastes with a cinnamon scone? Yeah, I think you get the picture...

And so, I now consider it a personal victory to drive past these establishments almost every day - on my way to Stroller Strides class, taking Monkey to and from preschool, traveling to and from the grocery store, Target, you name it. I'll give their real estate folks credit - they sure know how to place their stores!

Computer Overload

Maybe it's just me...

I'm new to the whole Facebook/MySpace phenomena. Sure, I'd heard of them, but I didn't see what the big deal was all about, and I didn't think that anyone I knew was using them. But eventually curiosity got the best of me, and I had to go see what it was all about...

So, I pulled together a bare-bones MySpace profile, and then basically let it sit there for a while. In the meantime, I found a bunch of on-line friends, as well as real ones, on Facebook, and I found myself checking my page constantly. It's been a cool way to check in on people, to reconnect with others, and to generally goof around. But, to be honest, some of the applications are starting to wear me down.

Today, for example, I received "good karma" from a friend of mine back home. Nice thougt - the first five times she gave it to me. Now I'm starting to feel guilty - is it rude if I don't give it back and pass it on to ten other people? Each application is starting to feel like a chain letter - I'm not being threatened with bad luck if I don't "pass it on," yet I'm constantly having to choose "skip" to move on to other things, as if my computer WANTS me to carry on the good karma/l'il green patch/gift/pumpkin patch/Christmas tree/you name it!

And then there's the matter of etiquette - how often is appropriate to post on another person's wall without seeming like a stalker? How often must one update one's status? And what is an acceptable number of pieces of flair? So many questions, so few answers...

In the meantime, I decided to revisit MySpace, as I started to hear some people express a preference for that application. I've found a few friends, but I haven't had much of a chance to dive in yet. My site is still under construction, and says very little about myself. And it contains a blog feature, presenting the question of what should go on that blog and what should go on here? Suddenly, I'm getting overwhelmed with options - bulletin boards, private messages, e-mails, text messages, blogs, Facebook, MySpace - Soon I fear I'll be spending more time trying to keep everyone adequately up-to-date on my life that I won't have time to live it!

I think I need to come up with a plan to tackle these multiple forums - a special purpose for each. And I will.... just as soon as I update my Facebook status, upload some pics to my MySpace page, check my three favorite Bulletin Boards, read a few friends' blogs, and ... what am I forgetting?? Oh yeah - WORK!

Tuesday, October 28, 2008

The Wiggles are magical!

OK, so I feel a tiny bit guilty...

Monkey was in day care today, so I haven't spent a lot of time with him.

But when he got home, after only a single one-hour nap, I got the benefit of his fussy time... It feels so unfair sometimes that he has so much fun at school, and then I get the crankiness to finish off the day.

So we've played a bit, and I've made him laugh, but he's definitely in "high-maintenance" mode this evening. So what did I do? Turned on a Wiggles DVD (specifically, "Toot Toot," if you're taking notes...) And Monkey is completely mesmerized. I'm not sure he's even moved since I turned it on ten minutes ago!

Now, this isn't something I do all the time - I don't want him to turn into a brainwashed Wiggles zombie. But there is something about the Wiggles in particular that he just LOVES! He really enjoys a combination of music and dancing, and when he watches cartoons, he tends to tune out the narrative part of the show, and only watch the opening, closing, and other musical numbers. But with the Wiggles, it's all song and dance, almost ALL the time - It's Monkey heaven!

And I have a confession - The songs are kind of catchy, and I often catch myself singing "Fruit Salad" and other songs in random moments. :-) But I'm partial to the original Wiggles, and can't seem to accept that Greg had to quit and be replaced - the new guy just doesn't seem like a real Wiggle to me. :-( Lucky for me we have the older DVDs, so I can watch selectively.

And speaking of The Wiggles - Have any of you seen Disney's relatively new offering, The Imagination Movers? Maybe it's just me, but they seem like such a blatant Wiggles knockoff. Four guys, each of whom sings (or plays an instrument) and has some unique characteristic or quirk. On the one hand, I can't blame them for trying to piggy-back off The Wiggles success, but on the other hand, it just seems wrong. I like the history of The Wiggles - guys who wanted to be teachers and put together an act as part of their schooling. The Imagination Movers strike me more as wanna-be actor/musicians.

I have to wonder why I care about this, but there you have it.

Busy busy

I've been bad about posting lately. :-( I'm frustrated, because blogging is something I really want to do, but other things just seem to keep taking up all of my time.

On the plus side, I've started going to Stroller Strides three times a week, in an effort to keep exercising (and thus losing weight) now that the weather is turning significantly cooler, after a surprisingly warm September and early October. I don't always make it there all three days, but I'm averaging twice a week, which is definitely better than what I might otherwise do on my own! Monkey seems to enjoy it, although his favorite part is when we do ab work at the end, and the kids generally get out of their strollers and run around. Unfortunately, my ab exercises are lagging behind the rest of the group, as I have to keep jumping up and chasing Monkey, asking him to give back another little one's sippy cup, etc... He loves to run laps around the fitness center - perhaps I have a little runner in training? If so, he sure didn't get it from me!!

Work has been slow for the past couple weeks, which means I'm feeling poor this month, although that hasn't stopped me from shopping. Losing weight has several benefits, one of which is the need for some new clothes! My jeans were on the verge of falling off of me, and while that was kind of cool as a reinforcement of how I'm doing, it wasn't making a particularly impressive fashion statement. :-) And, there's the Monkey - now that we've finally worked our way through ALL of the shower and early baby gifts, most of which ended around 6 months, but a few which stretched into 9 and 12 month gear from a few forward-thinkers, we're stuck buying all of the Monkey's clothes on our own. It's such a guessing game... How fast will he outgrow the 12-month pants, and do I need to buy him a bunch of 18-month stuff? Or has his growth slowed down enough that I should hold off buying more 18-month stuff until I know whether he's gonna need it mostly in winter or spring? So, of course, I buy too much - the perfect solution.

One would think that the downturn in billable hours would allow me to catch up on some home projects - Monkey's scrapbook, my desire to do another DVD montage of Monkey's first year, printing off some of my 2 million photos and actually starting an album, or perhaps trying Publisher and making a book as a Christmas book... all still on my to-do list, untouched. And don't even get me started on Christmas shopping - I've barely given it a thought, other than to pick up a few impulse items for Monkey.

I have also had trouble making a dent in my DVD backlog, and I've had to give up on a few shows already. Probably for the best, given my couch potato tendencies, but still a little sad in the sense that I feel I have less and less time to myself. I gave up on Heroes, as it was always near the bottom of my list in terms of priorities to watch, and I felt like I was just watching it to make more room for other shows, not because I was particularly enjoying it. I'm still trying to catch some of my favorite shows on-line, given the fact that my cable company and local CBS affiliate reached a deadlock in contract negotiations almost a MONTH ago, having the nerve to deprive ME, the almighty customer, of the ability to DVR shows like Survivor, The Amazing Race, How I Met Your Mother, and Big Bang Theory - How dare they!! (And yes, I am aware that for the price of a pair of rabbit ears, I could watch these shows, but it's the principal of the thing - how can a cable company take away a major network??)

And now, with work finally picking up again, I'm actually resenting the workload, even though the money will be needed for the holidays. I have to make to trips back home for continuing legal education, which will reduce the number of days I have available to work, and will keep things hopping right around the holidays. I guess it's time to step back, take a deep breath, and get organized!

Saturday, October 11, 2008

Playing Tag...

And here I was thinking I haven't had any ideas lately for an update to this blog...

Kristen [Grr, the link function doesn't appear to be working, but you can find her blog at] "tagged" me to play a blog game. I'm new to this, but willing to play along. So, to pretty much cut and paste the rules: I tell you six random things about myself, and then tag six more people to do the same. Sadly, however, two of the people I would tag are Kristen and Beverly, who Kristen has already tagged, so I'm not sure how far this will go...

OK, six random things.... Thinking, thinking... OK, here goes:

1. I was a drama geek in high school, and had hoped to get involved in community theater as an adult (not entirely out of the question yet, maybe when Monkey is a little older).
2. I took piano lessons for 8 years, and now don't even own a piano. I gave it away (along with a lot of other stuff I wish I still had) when I moved cross-country to be with my now-husband.
3. I met my husband on (but he'll deny it if you ask him)
4. I'm a terrible procrastinator.
5. I had weird seizures as an infant, and one doctor told my parents I would probably have to be institutionalized. Instead, I graduated #1 in my class at law school. Not trying to brag, but that's a pretty exciting way to defy their predictions, no?
6. I still bite my nails and pick at my cuticles incessantly - the only time my hands looked REALLY good was when I was pregnant. Maybe I should take those prenatal vitamins just for the heck of it??

So, here's the part where I'm supposed to tag six more people. Hmmmm... I'll get back to you on that part, and in the meantime, I'm accepting volunteers if I actually have any readers out there!!

And, FYI, here are the rules, for what it's worth:

1. Link to the person that tagged you.
2. Post the rules on the blog.
3. Write six random facts about yourself.
4.Tag six people at the end of your post.
5. Let each person know they have been tagged.
6. Let your tagger know when your entry is up.