Thursday, September 29, 2005

Thoughts on a book I'm reading

Here's the first installment of my thoughts on the book Addictions: A Banquet in the Grave, by Edward Welch. This is going to be VERY informal, so please bear with me. I'm just going to jot down some notes on a chapter or two at a time.

Chapter 1 - Practical Theology
Welch writes, "Practical theology protects us from the deceptions in our hearts and the competing "isms' of the world. It sets the boundaries for our lives." Basically, he sets forth the premise that Scripture does set forth ready help for our addictions, even though it may not appear to do so. I could not agree more that Scripture contains much for the entrenched food addict, at any rate. Once you start to look for it, it's amazing how much the Bible has to say about food. Seems like perhaps some others have had this problem before.

One passage in this chapter that is especially poignant for me was in the section entitled "Describing Addictions". He explains, "Addicts feel as if they are trapped and out of control. They feel like abject worshippers, devoted to something that can be very dangerous...they feel they can't let go, clinging even when the addictive behavior yields very few pleasures and a great deal of pain...[they] feel out of control, enslaved, stuck, and without hope for freedom or escape." Wow. That is really how I felt much of the time for the past 7-8 years. I became truly miserable and felt so stuck. It was horrible. It's good for me to re-live this now, if only for a little while, so that I can keep in my mind how terrible it was to feel that way. It reminds me that I never, ever, ever want to go back to that again. I love food, and always will, but it is just not worth it. Welch explains why we keep going back to these things that enslave us, "What unites these and most other activities or substances described as addictions is that they deliver a bodily experience...[they] change our physical experience and they do it quickly, working within seconds or minutes rather than days or weeks." It is true, the temporary pleasure is hard to resist, but part of the resistance is remembering the long term pain that it causes.

That's most of what really particularly struck me about chapter 1. I'll try to write some on chapter 2 tomorrow. Or whenever. For now, I'm going to get my stuff ready for the morning and hit the sack.

Tuesday, September 27, 2005

A good day

Work was very busy today, but finished well. Got lots done, which was satisfying. Then I picked up Calvin, and went to Costco and got some much-needed stuff (esp. diapers, wipes, and frozen fruit for my smoothies). I won't bore you with the rest of my afternoon, but I will say that I LOVE HARMON'S grocery store. They had everything there that I could NOT find yesterday at Wal-Mart. I really hate Wal-Mart anyway, and so it does not pain me to say that I am NEVER EVER going to do a big grocery run there again. They didn't have like 5-6 things on my list, the prices were not that good (!), and the service was lousy (of course). I really really love Harmon's. :)

Tonight I didn't cook dinner and we just had leftovers, which was great. Our fridge is so full of stuff for Calvin's 1 year party that there is no room for anything else, so we really needed to eat the leftovers to make more room.

I did cook a little - I made coconut-almond rice krispie treats for Loren (he gave me this recipe and begged me to make it, and I said "no problem", much to his surprise) with the almond paste I could NOT find at Wal-Mart (grrrrrrrrrrr!). They were so amazingly good. I have never had rice krispie treats this good before. I was worried about the points value, but they were only 4 points for a very large one, which was decent, I thought.

Oh, this I'm posting for Sara Z. Thanks for the accountability! I am impressed! After I blogged last night I did spend 5 minutes playing a scrabble move and saw your comment on the post, so I posted again. I actually got to bed only a tad bit late, but managed my 7.5 hrs sleep and also managed quiet time and a walk in the morning, and was only 10 min later to work than I wanted to be, so it all worked out. It's earlier tonight, so I'm going to read for a while before I go to bed, unless Loren wants to watch a movie. He's putting Calvin to sleep right now, so we should have some baby-free time for a bit, which is always nice.

Monday, September 26, 2005

So far

I'm doing better on the sleep thing. Only for 2 days, and it's late tonight now, but I am going STRAIGHT to bed (do not pass Go, do not collect $200...) now! I have gotten up early enough to exercise and have morning quiet time. Hopefully I can be consistent. Just putting this here makes me accountable to you, the reader (whoever you are). That's what I need - people to hold me accountable.

So with that in mind, I'm off to bed!

Saturday, September 24, 2005

Progress for the week - GOAL DAY!

Yeah, it's been 3 days since I posted. Sorry. I don't have a good excuse. I still want to post about the Addictions book but just haven't gotten to it yet. I will, never fear.

Today was goal day at WW. Every 10 weeks we set goals and see how we did on our last set of goals. I did great on all of my goals except my goal to get more sleep. I need to work on getting to bed earlier - that might mean less blogging. Hopefully it will mean I just get a bit more disciplined. We'll see. Anyway, this week I lost 1.8 lb, and my total for 1o weeks was 17.2 lb! My total since I started is 63.6 lb GONE! I was able to buy some size 16 pants, and they fit well. Considering that I was wearing a 3x plus (26-28 size), this is a vast improvement. Heck, in high school I wore size 14-16. I still weigh about 25 lb more than in high school, but I'm working on it.

OK, so my new goals are:
1. Eat within my points every week.
2. Get at least 28 activity points per week.
3. Lose another 12-18 lbs and get my 75 lb magnet!
4. Get at least 7.5 hrs sleep 5 or more nights per week.
5. In conjunction with number 4, make sure I go to bed early enough so that I can wake up to have a MORNING quiet time 5 days per week (minimum 15 min).

The sleep part (#4 and 5) is going to be tricky. With that in mind, I'm going to bed!!!

Wednesday, September 21, 2005

ramblings in lowercase - lazy & tired

work today was long and ugly. had to go back after i picked up calvin and worked for another 1.5 hr with him in the backpack. ugh.
dinner was great. had dutch oven feast at loren's work. it was amazing food - the BEST comfort food i've had in a long time, hands down. yummy potato dish, green beans in mushroom soup, a mexican casserole, tender chicken, some great pork tenderloin, too... then cobbler for dessert that was just incredible. these people do this for their hobby - they have a large trailer (we're talking LARGE - like 15-20 ft long) that holds all their stuff plus has a workspace. they had like 20 dutch ovens. some were so huge - i have never seen a dutch oven that big! loren was very impressed too.
so now you ask - did you do well in the food department? well, things went pretty well overall. i exercised amazing self control until dessert. then i did eat a lot. however, i had not used ANY of my points allowance yet this week, and i still have most of it left, so actually things are fine. i do still expect that i will lose weight this week. i do have another big dinner thingy on friday (neurobiology & anatomy picnic, catered by rico's mexican market - yum!) but i still have some points allowance left, and it should all be fine.

Sunday, September 18, 2005

Progress for the week

It's Sunday, and I usually write about my weekly progress on Saturday, but I guess I forgot to post it yesterday. I lost 1.6 lb more for a total of 61.8 lb! I am hoping to be at 75 lb gone by Thanksgiving. A lady in my class got her 75 lb magnet yesterday, and it was really cool seeing her do so well, since I don't have far to go to get there too.

Part of my journey is figuring out the spiritual component to the whole weight problem. One of John Piper's sermons mentioned this book, and I thought it would apply, so I am reading it. It's about addictions (hoping it will apply to my food addiction - yes, it really is an addiction) and it's called Addictions: A Banquet in the Grave. The first chapters have been good and informative, but I'm now reading the chapter on how to say "no" (can't remember the chapter title exactly), and it's really really good. It's very much hitting home, and it's information that I think I will want to read and re-read and re-read. When I have a little more energy and I've actually finished thinking more about the chapter, I'll post more on this topic.

Friday, September 16, 2005

TGIF; gingered pear jam

I'm pretty tired. It's been a decent week, but I'm tired all the same. I swore I wasn't going to can any more this fall, but then I got an order of spices from Penzey's, and included was candied ginger. I couldn't resist making my favorite recipe w/a few of the pears we have left from our tree - gingered pear jam. I now have seven 8oz jars and four 4oz jars cooling on my counter. I can't wait to try it!

Thursday, September 15, 2005

A great afternoon

Instead of spending the afternoon vacuuming (which the house desperately needs), I lounged in the hammock during Calvin's nap. That was time very well spent. I really enjoyed reading and relaxing. In addition to reading and meditating on I John for a while (we're studying it at church), I was reading "The Forgotten Kingdom" by David Bigler, about the early years of Mormon settlement in Utah. It's pretty fascinating so far. It's written for people who are new to the state of Utah, so they can learn more about the culture & history here. Since I've been here 6 years, I'm not exactly new to the state, but I figure it can't hurt to read it anyway. I certainly am learning a lot so far. I've read a couple of chapters, and it may take a while to read, but I'll work on it intermittently I'm sure.

Ahhhh, the warm bath I started to draw is calling my name. Calvin is in bed, and I'm going to enjoy a soak and some more reading. I've taught my piano student, prepped my breakfast and Calvin's, laid out clothes for tomorrow, and I'm ready to relax!!!

Tuesday, September 13, 2005

I'm "interesting"

Visited the reproductive endocrinologist today (fancy speak for infertility specialist) and he once again pronounced me "interesting". I'm not sure I want a specialist to think I'm interesting. But at least I think he can help me. He certainly did a great job last time - our little boy is almost 1 year old now. We are going to take him with us on our next visit on October 3rd so that he can meet the doctor who made him possible. Anyway, the net outcome of the visit is that I get to have more labs done and then we'll figure out a course of action. Wooo hooo! Pincushion time again! We're going to try & figure out how to get the ol' body functioning right again post-childbirth and all, and he will also try to help us figure out how to breastfeed more successfully this time around, if it's possible. He did think it was strange that although my problem before was elevated prolactin levels that I had problems with adequate milk supply - he said he's only heard of one other patient that had that problem coupled with elevated prolactin. He wasn't sure what was going on there, but promised to help us figure it all out. That's all we can ask.

Monday, September 12, 2005

In memory of Ebony, 1991-2005

My parents put their dog Ebony to sleep today. She was truly a great dog. I helped my mom to pick her out back in 1991... still remember what a cute puppy she was and how she was so frisky and adorable. She was always such a wonderful, sweet companion. She will be missed a lot.

Ebony and Shadow playing (before Shadow was big enough to pick on Ebony!!!). Posted by Picasa

Great women's fellowship

Tonight was the women's fellowship - the first one of the new "year" - and the first I've been to at New Song. It was really great to start getting to know some of the other women. It's hard to do that on a Sunday morning, and since one of the main reasons we switched churches was to be close enough to church to develop deep relationships, I am making the best effort I can to get to know people. I almost didn't make it, because my piano students left at 6:40 pm and then I had to make & eat dinner before the group started at 7:00 pm 10 minutes from my house (it was at the Wheatley's house; Sam is the pastor of the church and Kate is his wife). Yikes! I was 20 min late, but thankfully, that was OK. Even better, Loren got a little break because I took Calvin with me and Sam & the girls watched him for us. That was really great!

Anyway, it is really interesting how our lives are all sort of linked. 3 of us have husbands who are MDs, and one of the women used to work in the same dept as I do at the U. Her husband works in a lab in the building next to the one I work in. It's neat to actually know people at church who live & work so close to us. I really missed this a lot, but just didn't realize it. I am looking forward to continuing to get to know everyone better!

Sunday, September 11, 2005

Inspired by Sara

If Sara can do it, so can I. Here is a pic of me as a junior in high school (1985). OK, go ahead, laugh...

Sick, but still busy

Not feeling well. Have an annoying cold that is making me really tired. Despite that, I managed to do a lot of canning yesterday, mostly because I had a bunch of fruit that was going to go bad if I didn't do something with it. Last weekend I made plum jam with plums from our yard. Yesterday I made a peach pie and peach jam with peaches from Sarah's yard, and also canned pears in a very light cinnamon syrup. We tried some of the pears today (one can didn't seal properly, so we ate them!) and they are delicious!!! After all that work canning I was exhausted, and today I don't feel any better. I still taught 2 piano lessons and worked in the lab for an hour, but I probably shouldn't have. Hopefully after a good night's sleep I'll feel better.

Saturday, September 10, 2005

Progress for the week

I lost 2.2 lb this week for a total of 60.2 lb!!!!!!!!!!! Got another 5 lb star to add to my collection. My bookmark is getting full of stars - it's really cool. When I get to goal I'm going to laminate it. Anyway, it was fabulous getting to 60 lb. Lots of people are noticing my weight loss. At work this week at least 3-4 people mentioned it, which was really great!

Friday, September 09, 2005

Calvin is adorable! Other notes...

OK, so I'm a raving mommy. But he is so cute! Right now he's waving pieces of paper in the air, throwing them, and chasing them around the room. Earlier today he crawled underneath the stroller and repeatedly got stuck. It was endearing, if maddening. He is entertaining us a lot.

Other notes... Loren is almost over the annoying cold that had him pretty wiped. Now I have it. Grrrrr. Have managed to keep exercising and working, though. Other than that, it's been a fairly straightforward week. This is a boring post, so I'll stop now!

I'm stuck now, mommy! Posted by Picasa

Crawling in the bottom of the stroller Posted by Picasa

Monday, September 05, 2005

Returning from vacation is insane

There is TOO MUCH to do when you get back from a 2 week vacation. Cleaning, laundry, yardwork, bills, grocery shopping, and more. It all just accumulates and lies in wait for you, hence the lack of activity on my blog lately.

Despite that, things are holding steady. I managed to stay on program while gone, and have lost another 2.8 lb! Total now is 58 lb gone! I read a GREAT book while I was gone - "Walking: The Complete Guide to the Complete Exercise" by Casey Meyer. I was contemplating starting running because I wanted to get a higher intensity workout, but I really prefer walking. Well, my mom had this book sitting on her coffee table, and I picked it up. Good move. I learned that aerobic walking is not only possible, but desirable! I can burn just as many calories walking w/o the risks of injury associated w/running. So, since I've been back, I've been walking fast. Very fast. The other day I did 3.75 miles in 46 minutes (average 12:15 mile!). I prefer to do about 13 min miles for right now, as that seems to be fast enough to get my heart rate over 70% max (high intensity for WW).

It's getting late, so I'll sign off for now.