Monday, July 28, 2008

You Know What? This "Life Change" Stuff Is Actually Working.


OK, so I didn't update you on my weigh-in last week because I was confused. I weighed in at a Tampa branch and she calculated it wrong...so I wanted to get it straightened out this week before posting. Boy, was I shocked tonight! My lil' team and I (including my hubby and my sis-in-law) had quite an evening! My sister-in-law lost 4.8 pounds, my hubby hit his 10% of his body weight goal and I found out that not only did I hit my 10% last week but I lost an additional 7.2 this week. Now, I must admit that I was sick Saturday night and Sunday and didn't eat much but SEVEN POINT TWO?!? It brought me to a total of 32. 4 pounds lost since May 13 (actually, 40 since April 30 but since those were before I started WW, I really can't count them in my "official" total...but, believe me, I'm very happy those pounds are gone, too!)

Anyway, I was pretty proud of our team this week. It wasn't easy but we all hung in there!

Now, for my biggest challenge yet: LAS VEGAS. Hubby and I leave tomorrow for 5 nights while I do an event there. Hopefully I'll walk a lot of calories off because nothing screams diet LESS than a week in Las Vegas. What happens in Vegas doesn't stay in Vegas when it comes to the eating part. It jumps on your hips and hitches a ride home.

Wish me luck.

Saturday, July 26, 2008

Amazing Amazing Grace

Like so many others, my favorite song always has been, is, and always will be Amazing Grace. When I was younger, it used to be the soothing melody of the song pouring out of our piano on a Sunday morning as I was dressing for church. Later, it was the feeling of security and belonging that I felt as I sang those familiar words with my mother...whether cooking dinner or driving in our car...her soprano notes blending perfectly with my alto harmony.

But, as I've grown older and more appreciative of the grace that God has bestowed upon me (and, believe me, it's overwhelming at times) it is the very words of the song that entrance me. A friend of mine sent me this video and it moved me to tears. I think it will move you, too.

Amazing grace, how very sweet the sound.

Tuesday, July 22, 2008

Butterflies

I'm sure there are many legends that involve butterflies. But none hold a candle to the significance and sentimentality of the fifteen very special construction paper butterflies that adorn the painted cinder block space above the chalkboard in my sister's middle school classroom.

You see, back in 1998, two very special hands used a pair of scissors and a black sharpie marker to transform simple pieces of school-grade construction paper into a rainbow of butterflies to decorate a young new teacher's room. That teacher is my sister and those now-laminated butterflies have become one of her most treasured possessions.

Gracing classrooms throughout the Southeast, the cut-outs, in brilliant shades of teal, pink, and fuschia, dance alongside their bold counterparts dressed in vivid orange, yellow and kelly green hues.

It is no coincendence that I usually pay my sister a visit just as it is time for her to change classrooms and redecorate for a new school year. This week has been no exception. And, just as in years past, our first mission is to hang the butterflies. Only, we could not find them. We dug through boxes of paper, books and science tools as well as stacks of manila folders-- any one of which could have contained the sought-after creatures.

I could sense the panic in my sister's voice as she searched her new classroom to no avail. Finally, she found them and all was right with the world. I then kicked into gear and performed my beloved annual job duty...taping them to the wall in just the perfect spot. One by one, I placed them in a design that mimicked butterflies flying up and down above her board. And as I taped each one to the wall, I offered up a silent note of thanks for our Mom.

I've been missing her a lot lately. Like when the very sight of my friend Cindy's nachos during my birthday dinner left me in a pool of tears... remembering that Mom used to make nachos and cheese as an after-school snack for us. Not an earth-shattering revelation but a special memory, regardless. That's why, as each butterfly found its respective perch on Jenny's wall today, I was more grateful to Mom than ever before. My sister is not able to pick up the phone and call Mom. And she can't share with her how much her granddaughter resembles her (it's freakish, really). But what she can do is glance up at a once-stark-white wall and revel in the time and love that went into creating those butterflies so many years ago.

And let me assure you, they have been lovingly preserved...as have the memories of a very special Mom whose spirit now dances, freely and without limitation, in the laminated glory of fifteen brightly-colored construction paper butterflies.

Saturday, July 19, 2008

Greetings from Tampa

I'm in Tampa this week helping out my sis who had knee surgery today. All went well and now my chief role is keeping the stubborn mule-- oops, I mean, sweet gal, off of her leg. Can you feel the love?

But, all is well and we've enjoyed spending time together, looking through old pictures, etc.

I'll be heading back Thursday.

More later!

Katie

Wednesday, July 16, 2008

SOOOoooooooo Close, But Yet So Far Away....

The metaphor, analogy, whathave you was not lost on me this morning.

Baby J. is trying to crawl. Trying his DARNDEST, I must say. He wants to. He tries to. But, somehow, he usually comes up just short of his goal. His Daddy and I are usually standing by in the wings cheering him on but it's a no-go so far. But you know what? He keeps trying.

This morning, he was laying on his stomach and his pacifier was JUST out of reach. Instead of handing it to him immediately, I decided to sit back and see if he could get to it. His fingertips brushed against it several times as his feet and legs wiggled to and fro but he could not seem to grasp it. I could see the frustration build up in his eyes until he finally let out a full out wail followed by a lot of mumbling and griping.

That's when it hit me.

I have been working hard on my weight loss plan for two months now. And the goal I've had in sight? The TEN PERCENT goal. It's the first real milestone that Weight Watchers sets for you and that is what my sight has been set on...TEN PERCENT. Especially this week. A tiny, eensy weensy .8 pounds away from it, I worked like a dog this week to meet that goal at weigh-in last night. It was my BIRTHDAY and I skipped my favorite, all-time, sweet-tooth concoction...BIRTHDAY CAKE. First time in 37 years I haven't had a slice of birthday cake--but my goal was within reach. I ate fish instead of burgers, asparagus instead of french fries...I was on my way. I also worked out harder--and longer--and went into the meeting hoping against all hope to lose that POINT EIGHT of a pound.

Donning my lightest clothing and even my worst bra because it had no underwire (I'm just sayin'-- I will stop at nothing) I told Dana, my WW leader, the amount I needed to lose before ever so gingerly stepping up on the scale. She looked at the scale, looked back at me, looked back at the scale and slowly started to write. As I saw the numbers emerge, I quickly did the math only to realize that I had lost POINT TWO of a pound. POINT TWO? Are you kidding me?

My heart sank.

Instead of going to the meeting, I wanted to go to the nearset bakery, purchase the largest chunk of white birthday cake with white birthday cake icing I could find and devour it. I was dejected. Much like Baby J. grasping desperately for the pacifier, I was grasping for my first real goal yet my fingertips just barely touched it instead.

During the meeting, I know I was quite disruptive as I sat on the back row and winced each time she called out a 5-pound goal award or the coveted 10% award. I'm even a tad over a pound away from my 25-pound award and she called that out, too. I wanted to scream out, "BUT I WAS SO CLOSE!" Instead, I took it like a big girl...sorta. I sucked it up and tried to focus on the fact that I did lose...if even two-tenths of a pound. It was somethin.

But as I watched Baby J. crying out in frustration as he tried to reach his pacifier this morning, I felt renewed. We all struggle in some way. For me, this has not been an easy task. But as I watched that sweet little foot push off of the carpet and propel him forward just enough to grasp the elusive green pacifier--his goal--I cheered and clapped and celebrated with him. He had finally pushed enough to reach his goal. He had not given up.

And neither will I.

Monday, July 14, 2008

Menu Planning Monday


These are the recipes planned for Monday, July 14 - Thursday, July 17

Monday
Hot Chick BBQ Chop Salad
Corn Chowder
Sliced watermelon

Tuesday
Brown Sugar Chicken (crockpot)
Garlic roasted green beans
Brown rice
Orange Cream Dessert

Wednesday
Italian Polenta Casserole
Green salad
Fruit Salad ("Waldorf" style)

Thursday
Leftover Night

Friday - Sunday
Out of Town

Saturday, July 12, 2008

Day Trip Memories

Our Georgia friends Jimmy and Melissa asked us to meet them "halfway" in Chattanooga, Tennessee to have a "belated" birthday lunch for me today. A short 2-hour drive for each of us, we eagerly made plans to meet them around noon.

It was such a great day.

We met for lunch and then spent the afternoon at the Children's Discovery Museum... a hands-on experience for kids that was fun for us adults as well!

Our family of four in the dinosaur exhibit


Daddy and Baby J. enjoying the water features


Our friends' son Jackson getting a kick out of the water


Katie and Melissa at the restaurant for dinner (our 2nd meal together today!)

Baby J. hangin' out in the high chair


And finally--my favorite pic that sums up today. What I wouldn't give to wear red construction paper ears all day and not care ONE BIT what anyone thinks!

************************************************************

It was a great day spent relaxing with friends and enjoying some delicious food. What a nice way to end my "birthday week" celebrations!

Friday, July 11, 2008

Birthday Visit

[above] Cindy and I before they left today and [below] our boys--D and E...

My friend Cindy drove up from Georgia Wednesday for a visit to celebrate my birthday. The boys got to spend a lot of quality time together while the Mamas yanked at our hair a little bit having four boys getting "reacquainted" (a.k.a. running hog wild). OK, so Baby J. wasn't exactly "running wild," but he sure wanted to be keeping up with the big boys!

It was a great visit as we hung out, looked at a few houses and drove in the car singing ABBA at the top of our lungs.

Life on the wild side. It's not for the faint of heart.

Thursday, July 10, 2008

Does anyone know what today is????

Happy Birthday Mommy!!!!!!!!!!



Love,

Your Boys

Tuesday, July 08, 2008

Weigh-In Day and the Elusive Mystery of PUMAS Revealed


Well, today is weigh-in day and I dreaded it. I honestly did not think I had lost a thing. In fact, I was afraid I might have gained because of, well, GIRLIE issues. Apologies to any menfolk that might be reading this. In fact, you can just stop reading right now.

Don't say I didn't give you ample warning.

You see, this is the SECOND month in a row that I have had, um, womanly occurrences. I don't do that. That's just not something my body does on its own. Hence why I have never been "with child." (Of course, I'm very much "with children" day in and day out. But, you know what I mean.)

Anyway, starting last month it happened on its own. And then, 5 weeks later, it has happened again. I must tell you, the letters P-M-S may be standard vocabulary for other households, but that's not something we've had to deal with on a regular basis. Well lemme tell ya, poor Keith is having to adjust to the new cyclical environment going on at Casa Bodiford and it ain't always so paradisical. (Yes, I made up that word...WHAT'S IT TO YA? Sorry, see what I mean?!) :-)

I have been tossing around the acronym PMS for a few weeks now and my sweet 6-year old sounds everything out when he thinks I'm spelling something he's not supposed to hear. So, he kept asking, "Mommy, what does "pumas" mean? I chuckled as I figured out what he was trying to spell.

"Well, son, um, it's something that girls go through when they're a little older. You don't need to worry about it."

Of course, that didn't do a lick of good. Every day, the Spanish Inquisition would commence as his curiosity about this particularly exotic acronym got the best of him. Finally, in an ill-timed, right-at-the-end-of-a-long-day trip to Wal-Mart, I was at the end of my rope. After the fiftieth time of asking him to stop touching things and asking to buy things, my son throws his hand on his hip and announces, "I have FINALLY figured it out!"

"What is that," I ask.

"What this PUMAS thing is. It means you're GROUCHY and GRUMPY. That's what it means."

Bingo, my boy.

Monday, July 07, 2008

Menu Planning Monday

Here are the recipes we're using for the Weight Watchers Core Plan this week:

July 7 - 11, 2008

Monday
Going out to eat!

Tuesday
Orange Pop Chicken (crock pot)
Brown Rice
Steamed Broccoli
Cucumber and Onion Salad (chilled)

Wednesday
Core Sloppy Joes (with whole wheat bun)
Grilled corn on the cob
Chilled Pickles
Deviled Eggs

Thursday - my "birfday" dinner!!!
Buffalo Chicken Lasagna
Layered Green Salad
Fruit Salad

Friday
Grilled pork chops
Pintos 'n cheese
Grilled Asparagus
Grilled pineapple kabobs

Enjoy!

The Fulfilling of a Dream

video

Not many people get to fulfill a dream at such a young age. You see, D is a train FANATIC. And Keith surprised him with the ride of a lifetime. Last Thursday, he went on a day-long business trip with Keith over to East Tennessee and got to drive a train all by himself. ALL BY HIMSELF. For an hour and a half.

It was a full-sized locomotive hauling empty limestone cars up a mountain. Over the course of the 17-mile journey, D. sat in the conducter's/engineer's/driver's? seat and pushed the right buttons, pulled the right pulley-things (good thing I wasn't driving, huh?) and had a BLAST. As you'll see on the video, he rang the bells at crossings, sounded the horn and looked like such a big boy!

I was so proud as I watched this, I think I shed a tear or twenty.

Blame it on PMS-- Proud Mama Syndrome.

Saturday, July 05, 2008

Maybe This Time You Can Write it in Pen!

For years I have kidded folks that they should be sure to use a pencil when jotting down our address in their address books. A "Frequent Mover," I always felt I should have some sort of punch card or something...you know, like the ones where you get a free sammich after the purchase of 6 or so. It was just a thought.

Anyway, growing up with my Dad getting transferred often, my sister and I were able to embark on a new adventure every few years or so. Many kids may not have liked it but, to me, it was a chance for a fresh start. Whatever parts of the "you" people had gotten to know in a particular location could be all but "wiped away" when arriving in a new place. There was alwaysthe chance I might be a "cool kid" wherever we went; but, instead, my true goofball personality would usually bleed through in the first 5 minutes and any semblance of the International Woman of Mystery mystique I had hoped to enlist was out the window.

One year i did get exotic, though, and used my full first name Kathleen (instead of Katie). It was seventh grade and the name carried an air of sophistication -- or so I thought. All I did was get really confused about who I really was and by the time eighth grade rolled around, I was back to being plain ol' Katie again. I was immeasurably relieved.

Well, the time has come again for us to pack up our stuff (I know! Didn't we just get here?!?) and settle into a new house. We found one, made an offer on July 4 and should hear back by Monday. I'm pretty sure (if we can make it work) that we'll be in this one quite a while! In fact, I'm gonna go out on a long limb and say it's possible that you can write our address in ink this time.

If you're wild and crazy like that, you know.

Thursday, July 03, 2008