Friday, October 28, 2011

'Ain't No Thing But a Chicken Wing

Just keeping you all updated on my progress. I was a little mum about it last week because I didn't do so well and I was feeling bad about it. Last Thursday at my weigh-in I had a gain of 1.2 pounds. Well, it happens. My choices didn't help the matter. We had some people over to watch football the previous Sunday and somebody brought an assortment of chicken wings from Buffalo Wild Wings, otherwise known as the "Casa de Diablo" to me...

I am always very quick to pipe up and advocate for Weight Watchers when I hear people say things like, "Can you have that?" or "Is that your diet food?" Yes, if it's food, of any kind, I CAN have it. I can have anything. No, it's not diet food. It's the same food everybody else eats. I'm just eating it with a different idea in mind than most others. What I'm trying to say is, I don't have to deny myself anything. However, there is one food that I truly have to try my best to avoid, and that would be fried chicken wings. Can I have wings? Sure. Should I have wings? Probably not. They're so little, so inoffensive, so spicy and succulent...and boy, do they wreak havoc when you add up how many Weight Watchers points they are. Even if you bake them in the oven?, you might ask. No, if they're baked or have the skin removed, they're much more forgiving. But come on, where's the fun in that? Some things are meant to be enjoyed to the fullest, and wings is one of them.

I was never a wing person growing up, ever. It was actually a college friend of mine, Debbie, who had a wing obsession, who originally turned me onto them. There's something about that heat from the buffalo sauce, the way it opens up all your nasal passages as you tear the juicy chicken away from the bone with your teeth. It's almost animalistic. So don't be shocked if you ever see me with a chicken wing in my hand...I might just end up beating on my chest like a gorilla and going monkey-postal on somebody.

These days, though, I am pretty good about resisting them. Usually if they're around, I can handle sampling just one, savor it, write it down to record it in my food journal, and move on. But that day, when those wings showed up in my house, I lost all grip on my senses. There were mild wings, hot wings, and terriyaki boneless wings. I steered clear of the mild and hot, but for some reason I decided that the terriyaki was worth trying. I allowed myself one and ate it. Mmmm, salty goodness....Okay, maybe just one more. Mmmm...okay, one more. You see where this is going. It lead to more than my fair share of breaded, fried chicken, which then lead to thoughts of 'well, I've already screwed up today, so I guess my week is ruined'. Right there. That was the moment I screwed up. It wasn't the wings. It was my attitude after I ate the wings.

One thing I have learned from Weight Watchers is that there will always come a time when I will have a bad day and make poor choices. It just happens. But the key to those bad days is what happens after it's over and the choices that I make then. Last week was a perfect example of what not to do when a bad day happens. I let that day of wings completely ruin the rest of my week. It beat me. If last week was a boxing match, then I was Apollo and the week was that blonde Russian guy who killed him in the ring. I let it win. I mean, I didn't spend the remainder of the week eating bon-bon's and potato chips, but I was very careless and used that day as a means of justifying myself. Halloween candy in the office? Sure, a few won't hurt me. Second helpings of dinner, why not? I already screwed my week anyway. I should have just called it a bad day, and started over the following morning fresh. But that message didn't hit home with me till I got on the scale and gained 1.2 pounds. It wasn't my first gain in the last year. They happen here and there, but rarely. It was enough to wake me up, though.

Suffice to say, I did much better this past week. I told myself I was "grounded". All the little hard-to-resist things were going to be resistible this week. I still ate, I still savored, but I stayed much sharper on my game. I made sure I drank more water than usual to help flush out all that excess salt. I upped my exercise this week with more yoga and power walking. I resisted the office Halloween candy and haven't had one single bite of it. Why would I need to eat it? I had some last week and I know what it tastes like. It isn't going to taste any better today than it did before.

I moved on and it paid off. I weighed in last night and lost 3.6 pounds. So not only did I lose the 1.2 I gained, but I lost a little more. That is the reward for staying focused and not letting the bad days beat me. It also pushed me out of the 60's and into the 70's. My weight loss total as of last night is 71.8. That's pretty darn amazing if I do say so myself. So bye-bye 60's. Buh...bye.

Will I never have chicken wings ever again? I love them far too much to ever give them up completely. I just have to learn a higher level of self-control when it comes to them, though. If they were lower in points, this would be a whole different story. But they're so high per wing, that added up only a small plate of them would knock out the entire daily points I'm allowed. Yes, I have extra weekly points I'm allowed to dip into, and yes, I receive extra points the more I exercise (although I try not to use those points), but I still try to avoid them. Wings might be my ultimate trigger food. Occasionally I can stop at just one, but it's clear that other days I can't. Somewhere in there I have to find a rhyme or reason. I might just have to break down and learn to like them baked in the oven.

In the end, this just proves that no matter how much time passes and no matter how many meetings I attend, I am not perfect and I probably never will be. I will always have bad days time and time again, and I will always have to find a way to pick myself up and deal with it. I still have a lot to learn.

Now onto my next challenge. Halloween weekend....

Saturday, October 22, 2011

Take Me To China

China. I love me some china...

I could actually look at and discuss china patterns all day long if it permitted. China sadly seems to be becoming a lost want these days, whether with new brides or anyone in the market for some beautiful dinnerware. Even on the special occasions like Thanksgiving, Christmas, Easter, or just a nice dinner party, I'm beginning to see less and less of "the good stuff" on peoples' tables. In these times, people, particularly couples, aren't interested in fragile dishes that not only cost a lot of money but require special care and extra space in their cabinets. Instead, people seem to be buying one set of quality dishes that can serve as both casual and be dressed up to something fancier. Solid white dinnerware has definitely become a huge trend since it's so versatile and makes all food look especially colorful and appetizing. Heck, my own everyday dinnerware is solid white. But me? If I had my choice, I'd have a different set of china to bust out for every month of the year!

When I was engaged and registering for gifts, china was the one thing I actually didn't need. You see, when my mother passed away sixteen years ago, my father made my sisters and I decide very early on who would "get" what of my mom's most valuable things. For whatever reason, my dad wanted this decided early on. One of those things was my parents' full set of Lenox china. Even as a teenager, I was incredibly old fashioned and loved the idea of having those dishes on my table one day. None of my sisters were interested in the china, so I was the one to get it. So when it came time for me to get married, china wasn't necessary because we already had the whole set waiting for us.

Sometimes I regret that. Not that I need another set of china, but occasionally I do regret not picking out a new pattern together with my own husband. But make no mistake, I love my parents' china. It's made by Lenox, who I think makes some of the prettiest and most classic china out there, and the pattern is called Moonspun. It's been discontinued for quite a while now and can no longer be found in stores, and of course it's the china that I grew up eating off of at the dining room table, so it's extra special to me to have it in my possession. Even more, not only do I have the china, but I have my parents dining room table and china cabinet in my house, where I get to look at the china on display every single day, so to me it's a true treasure. But of course...

...I still have my fantasy patterns. Patterns that I dream of pulling out whenever the occasion could call for it. For example...

Bernardau's "Constance"Otherwise known as "The Charlotte York" china. I remember seeing this for the first time when watching Sex and the City and being mesmerized by the green leaves. So beautiful and so very, very expensive...

Lenox Holiday Tartan Most people go for the Lenox Holly pattern, which I also love, but there is something about this Tartan pattern that just grabs me. Around the holidays, I have a thing for plaid, I think because I associate plaid with warm, snuggly blankets in front of a roaring fire. There's just something very cozy about it. Or maybe attending Catholic school my whole life had something to do with it. Who knows!

Spode's "Blue Italian" Oh my, I love love love this china. I'm certain many people would turn their noses up at this old fasioned look--it's been around since 1816--but to me it's absolutely classic and beautiful. Perhaps one day...

Wedgewood's "Renaissance Gold"I adore the blue pattern. It makes me think of the Meditteranean. It's almost like a modern twist on the colors of the Spode pattern above. Simply gorgeous!

I could go on and on. Seriously, why aren't people interested in aquiring china for themselves anymore? There could be nothing very interesting or special about passing down my clean white dinner plates from Bed Bath & Beyond to children or grandchildren. But fine bone china rimmed in platinum, delicate and intricate, that's something else.

What china pattern do you have? And if you don't have any, which are your dream patterns? I'm very interested, so tell me!

Thursday, October 20, 2011


This is me in early 2005 a few months into dating David...

This is me in May of 2009 on my first wedding anniversary...

This is me today at work...

I've almost come full circle.

Tuesday, October 18, 2011

Slow Cooker Sweet Potato Chili

Err...remember that delicious chili I was supposed to take a more professional photo of before I finished it off so that it wouldn't be left being represented by a bad cell phone photo? Um, yeah, I forgot to do that. Ha.

I guess I got so wrapped up in the exquisite flavor and the warm, satisfying sensation of the chili comfortably resting in my belly that it slipped my mind. Oops!

So without any further delay, please enjoy this recipe for Sweet Potato Chili. It's got just the right balance of richness and spice, and the sweet potato lends a satisfying extra layer of autumn goodness. If you don't have a slow-cooker, this can absolutely be done on the stove top in any large stockpot you've got, cooked on low for around three hours--just be sure to brown the meat first! Enjoy!

Slow Cooker Sweet Potato Chili
Makes: 12 cups, 6 servings
Serving Size: 2 cups
*WW Points Plus Points Per Serving: 7 points (4 points for 1 cup)

-28 ounce can crushed tomatoes
-14 ounce can diced tomatoes
-2 tbsp chili powder
-1 tbsp ground cumin
-2 tsp smoked paprika
-1 tbsp brown sugar
-1/2 tsp salt
-2 large sweet potatoes, peeled and chopped into 1” pieces
-1 medium onion, coarsely chopped
-2 cloves garlic, minced
-15 ounce can kidney beans
-15 ounce can black beans
-1 lb lean ground beef, with 7% fat

Combine all the ingredients in a slow cooker (no browning the meat beforehand) and stir to combine. Cook on low for 10 hours. DONE.

Feel free to mock!

Monday, October 17, 2011

Done With Hiding

Yup. Done. Donesky. Dunzo.

I debated quite a while on whether or not I would post any of the gruesome "before" pictures of myself on this blog, ever. As proud as I could be of losing weight, having to admit to anybody in full on display, let alone to myself, that I allowed myself to balloon up into some swollen caricature of my old and actual person, beyond simply "chubby" or "full figured", was something I haven't been very willing to do.

For example, my Facebook page has been a very edited version of my life the last few years. I've been on some good trips in the last few years--The Keys, The Bahamas, Savannah, Georgia, New York City--but you'd never know it by looking at my profile. I was heavy at my wedding and posted a few of those pictures, but after that is when it got continually worse and worse. I cherry picked only one or two pictures from there on out. Pictures where everything was mostly not seen with the exception of my face. And even then, there were only one or two. I've basically been keeping myself hidden from everybody.

It's stupid really. It's stupid when I think about who I'm hiding from. Relatives. Old classmates. People who knew me when I was still small and a size 6. When I was buck wild and not scared of my own shadow. People who only know snippets of my life now and know nothing more about me than what I place in their hands.

So basically, posting those pictures of myself yesterday was a huge breakthrough for me. That was me saying, "Who gives a f**k anyway?" Pardon my French. So I figure, since I untied the velvet robe and flashed you all, I might as well flash you some more. There aren't many, which is rather sad. There are blocks of my life that I will never be able to show my future children one day because there is little to no documentation of it. But I suppose it is what it is.

This was one month after my wedding. It was a downward spiral from here. I guess that's what happens when you register for supreme cooking equipment. You tend to cook yourself all sorts of delicious things...

I must say, I'm loving how dark my hair was. Must get hair colored ASAP...

Trying to hide behind Nella...

Hey there, double-chin. What's shakin'?

More to come....

Sunday, October 16, 2011

The Ghost of Summers Past

Shock. Horror. Disbelief. Disgust. More disbelief. Anger. Sadness. Reflection. Relief. Hope.

That was the order of emotions that I experienced when I came across this picture today. This was one of a set of pictures that were missing for a while, but David finally found them in a file. This was taken not all that long ago. It was late June of 2010 in the Florida Keys on a vacation we took with some of our friends. While it was a fun and beautiful vacation filled with fishing, snorkeling, great seafood, card games, and gorgeous sunsets, it was still a miserable experience for me at the same time. Putting it bluntly, I was a blimp...

I was a blimp who spent every moment I was there trying to make sure I was perfectly covered in my God awful mega plus-sized one-piece bathing suit. And that the plus-sized board shorts that I had to specially order online covered that up. And that the extra-large beach towel that stayed practically permanently wrapped around me like I was at a toga party covered all of that up. When we went snorkeling, I made sure I was the last person off the boat into the water for fear of making a fool out of myself kerplopping into the crystal blue ocean.

Oh, and do you see that wedding ring of mine? Do you see the way it appears to be strangling my finger? Well, it was. At this point, I'd been married for a little over two years and that ring hadn't been removed since the day I got my two rings soldered together. It wasn't some romantic notion of mine to not remove it out of devotion to my husband, it was merely the fact that the damn thing would-not-come-off! It was so squeezed onto my sausage of a finger that I had to wrap band aids around it to cover it when we went in the water to avoid reflecting light, which attracts barracudas.

In a nutshell, the little things were just awful. As fun as the trip was, it's never really fun for a fat person. A lot of things aren't. It's just the flat-out truth. When the picture above was taken, we were outside of a restaurant close to the rented beach house that we were all staying at in Marathon. I was reluctant to take it because I normally avoided cameras at all times, but everybody was jumping at the opportunity to get a shot in front of the lovely sunset, so everyone took a turn. When we got home and I saw these pictures, I remember like it was yesterday what I thought. I thought, 'Look at David. Look at how adorable he is. Look at how sweet he is. He doesn't deserve to have this miserable cow for a wife. He deserves someone else. He deserves someone cute and spunky and vivacious'--everything I was not. I was sad for him when I saw these photos. Not for me, but for him. I felt like a total let-down. The word shame doesn't even begin to scratch the surface. Of course, when I eventually told him my feelings on these photos, it really upset him. He told me, "Katie, you have always been beautiful to me no matter what you look like and I would not trade you for anything in the world..." By the way, have I mentioned that I have the most awesome, most kickass husband EVER??

But we all know that even the kindest of words don't always repair the damage within. At that point I was so lost and so sad that I didn't know what to believe or do. I was just getting by day to day feeling more awful than I'd ever felt in my life. And trust me, I've had some awful times.

But when I look at these pictures now, I feel a whole different set of feelings than I did at the end of this trip when I saw them for the first time. I mentioned feeling relief. I say relief because I now think, 'Thank God. Thank God I did something and am doing something about it. Thank God I am not that person anymore because that was not me. That is not who I am. And that is not who I want to be.'

The hope I feel is just a continuation of the relief. It's the hope that I can follow through with this journey and reach the finish line I so desperately yearn to cross. That I will learn more than just how to shed some pounds but how to live a long and healthy life where I can feel good about myself and feel the joy that deep down I know I deserve.

It's funny how just a couple of pictures can put so much into perspective.

See what I mean?

Friday, October 14, 2011

My Top 10 Favorite...

...MOVIES!! Why? I don't know, just because. The truth of the matter is, my life is not very exciting. It's currently wrapped up in nothing but diet and exercise, being childless while everyone around me is popping out babies left and right, worrying about how I'm going to afford Christmas presents, trying to finish reading my book club book for this weekend, and trying to figure out why several more than just the regular few gray hairs have been sprouting lately on my head in abundance. Oh yeah, the money worrying. And the being childless. That's probably where they're coming from. Silly me.

Actually, I just haven't had a whole lot to blog about the past week or so. I made a very delicious crock pot sweet potato chili last weekend, but the only picture I managed to snap of it was taken on my cell phone. Even in natural light, it was just a horrible picture not worthy of posting. I've been eating the chili all week and have only a bowlful left. Hopefully I can remember to get out the big guns, a.k.a. David's mamma-jamma camera that I don't really understand how to use, and take a nicer quality photo before I gobble it all up. If and when I do that I'll be sure to post the recipe. It was a keeper.

Anyways, back to le cinema...

Anyone who knows me well knows that I am a bonafide movie-lover. And when I say bonafide, I mean do not mess with me kind of bonafide. I'm not a genius and I certainly have not seen every movie under the sun, but I have most definitely seen more than my fair share. And perhaps a few others' fair shares.

The passion for movies is truly in my blood. My parents loved movies, as well as my cousins, aunts and uncles. Particularly on my father's side, they are all very serious movie lovers. My sisters and I grew up almost speaking our own kind of language--particularly my oldest sister Lauren and I. To this day, she and I can have an entire conversation quoting lines from movies, which nobody seems to understand but us. We're flibberty-gibbets like that (hmmm...can you name what movie that name came from?). Even cornier, my sisters and I used to actually act out scenes from various films. I recall one summer, I believe in 1988, when we spent countless hours acting out scenes from the movie 'Aliens'. Yes, you read that correctly. Lauren would always play Sigourney Weaver's character "Ripley" while my twin sister Meghan or I got to play the part of the young girl "Newt". If you've never seen the movie, Newt carries around the head of a doll as her only friend. With Lauren as Ripley, she would recite the line word for word asking, "Who is this?" to which Newt replies, "Casey." This is where Meghan and I delighted ourselves in frustrating Lauren, who took acting out these scenes very seriously. Lauren, or rather Ripley, then says, "Hello Casey." In the movie, Newt says nothing to this. It's completely silent. So, to make it interesting for ourselves when we were performing this scene, whichever one of us who was not playing Newt could never resist chirping out loud in a Munchkin-from-Munchkinland kind of voice, "HELLO!" as if it came from Casey the doll head. This would then result in Lauren getting angry and frustrated with us because we'd make her laugh when she was trying to remain in full-on thespian mode. It might not seem oh-so hilarious to anybody else, but to us these were comedic moments, brought together by our combined love of movies, that made marks on our memories. Good times with the "M" sisters indeed.

Movies, movies, movies....

The films that occupy my coveted top 10 list (well, it's coveted in my imagination) are of no real particular order except for the number one. It will probably always be in the number one spot because it's been rooted there for so long. It would take such an epic and loved film to move it, and frankly nobody seems to be making movies that well anymore. And the winners are...

#1 Grease

Seriously, who doesn't love Grease? This is one movie that I can without a doubt recite every single line, word for word, by heart. Am I proud of that? No, not exactly. It clearly illustrates that I've had too much time on my hands my entire life, but it's something I'd still never exchange. The singing, the dancing, the melodrama of teen love, and Rizzo. Ahh, Betty Rizzo. I have a very clear and distinct memory of sitting on our couch in New Jersey watching Grease on TV for the very first time and seeing Rizzo's bright red high heels take a turn into the high school gym for the dance. Even at age four, I knew that was the biggest badass bitch I'd ever seen and I just loved her. I always identified a little with Rizzo. Among her friends, she was still kind of a loner, which I've always viewed myself as. There were also some deep feelings there bubbling beneath her icy surface, which also resonated with me in a strong way. Ramma-lamma-ding-dong....

#2 Moonstruck

If you've never seen Moonstruck, please watch it. You may love it, you may hate it. This was the movie that Cher won an Oscar for, which many people never thought possible. That tells you a little something about it right off the bat. It's a wonderful New York movie involving a woman named Loretta, who is engaged to the sweet but boring Johnny, but is now in love with Johnny's angry and bitter brother Ronnie. Throw some La Boheme in there and you've got one beautiful story. Seriously people, contact Netflix now.

#3 Clue

A dark stormy night, six suspects, six murder weapons, a lot of rooms, and one brilliant comedic cast. Was it Ms. Scarlett? Colonel Mustard? Professor Plum? You'd have to watch to find out. In my opinion, this movie is pure 100% comedy gold. One of my favorite "situations" in movies is when something chaotic is going on in one place at one time. In this case, it's in a mansion on one night and is filled with hilarity of trying to figure out who did it, where, and with what. Not to mention, the best character of all, the butler Wadsworth, is played by the brilliantly-beyond-brilliant Tim Curry (my favorite actor of all time) and keeps the film moving at lightening speed. Between Tim Curry and oh my God Madeleine Kahn, and oh my God Eileen Brennan, and oh my God Christopher can see what this movie does to me. I hope to God that nobody ever attempts to remake this classic. Some things are better left alone in their perfect perfection.

#4 The Big Chill

It astounds me how many people I know that have never seen this, which is kind of a tragedy. Another fantastic film from the 1980's (which I'm now noticing as I glance at my list that 7 out of the 10 movies on my list were made in the 80's) with a wonderful ensemble cast. A group of old college friends gather to attend the funeral of one member of their old "group" who committed suicide. They have all gone in different directions and different careers, but end up spending the weekend together and find that the closeness they once shared is still there. But don't be fooled, this isn't an all sunshine-and-roses comedy. While cleverly written (the dialogue in this movie is fantastic and Jeff Goldblum has some of the best lines in the film) and an astounding soundtrack, there are a few darker moments infiltrated throughout involving drugs, suicide, and extra-marital affairs. But don't be put off. Once you watch it, you'll likely be asking yourself why you've never seen it before.

#5 Some Like It Hot

Old and in black and white, peppered with classic Hollywood movie stars. Jack Lemmon and Tony Curtis are musicians who accidentally witness a mob murder in a Chicago parking garage. Scared for their lives, they go on the run to avoid being "bumped off". Since the murderer knows they are musicians, and they still have to find a way to support themselves while on the run, they decide to disguise themselves as women and join a traveling female band, assuming that the mob boss will only be searching for them across the country in all-male bands. From the moment you see them dressed as women, you get a better sense as to why this movie has often been voted the funniest movie of all time. Lemmon and Curtis, or rather "Josephine and Daphne", make not only pretty unattractive women but can hardly contain themselves around their sexy counterparts, particularly Marilyn Monroe's character "Sugar Cain", whom Tony Curtis falls head over heels for. In the meantime there is an elderly Miami millionaire who just can't seem to keep his hands off of a not-amused Daphne. You can see where this is going...It's silly, it's ridiculous, and it's another reminder of why movies of that era were referred to as "The Golden Age". It just doesn't get better than this.

#6 Working Girl

Another great 80's film! This time involving Tess, played by Melanie Griffith, the over-worked, under-paid, and never-appreciated secretary who is determined to fight her way to bigger and better things in New York City. She lands a new secretarial job working for the mighty and shrewd Katharine Parker, played by Sigourney Weaver. Tess is quietly in awe of Katharine and her business savvy and tries bringing a brilliant business venture idea to her that could mean a big promotion for Tess. After being shut down by Katharine and told that her idea is basically small potatoes, Tess is stunned when she discovers that Katharine has in fact stolen her idea and is running with it. Tess refuses to take it lying down and starts some trickery of her own, determined to get her idea off the ground without Katharine knowing. Even though she's the villain, I adore the character Katharine Parker. I love her huge shoulder pads and ice cold demeanor. What can I say? Sometimes the villains are fun. Oh, and did I forget to mention that a very hot Harrison Ford is in this? Hello...Keep the kids out of the room when you watch this one. There are a few R-rated scenes. But trust me, you will love and enjoy the heck out of this if you ever get a chance to see it.

#7 Annie

Another musical. Another 80's film. Another Tim Curry movie. With Carol Burnett. And Albert Finney. And heart palpitations....I love this movie so! You all know the story of little redheaded orphan Annie. If you haven't ever seen it, you should be committed. We're talking one of the greatest musicals ever put on screen here! Also, this is kind of a fun fact, but back in the summer of 1996 I went up to New Jersey to visit my relatives and went out for a drive with my cousin Alex. He took me to show me around his college, Monmouth University, which he told me used to be one of the Vanderbilt mansions now converted to a school. Neato. As soon as I laid eyes on it I thought 'there's something very familiar about this place'. As soon as he took me inside and I looked up, I knew exactly where I was. I was in freakin' Daddy Warbucks' mansion!! Yes, the mansion that they used in the movie is actually a college in New Jersey, which I had no idea. It was one of the most unique places I have ever set foot in and such a fun, as well as unexpected, experience for me. Tomorrow, tomorrow...

#8 Superman

It's kind of hard to choose between Superman part one and part two, because I like them both, but the original I enjoy most. This might seem kind of a strange movie to have on my favorites list, but it's a part of my childhood. And it's one of those movies that if I'm flipping through channels and it's on, I will automatically get sucked into it. Action, adventure, comedy (I particularly love the scene where the pimp on the street sees Superman and exclaims, "Say Jim, that's a bad out-fit!), and Christopher Reeve's gorgeous baby blues...need I say more?

#9 When Harry Met Sally

Ahh, another one of my New York movies. I love films that take place in New York where the city becomes almost its own character. Another Meg Ryan movie, You've Got Mail, is sort of the same thing. What I love about this movie is that there's nothing to it but good acting, good writing, and a good story. No blood or guts, no special effects, just good stuff. Billy Crystal and Meg Ryan, Harry and Sally, meet for the first time as college graduates who carpool together to New York to begin their lives. They don't get along very well as Harry is laid back and a little eccentric where Sally is completely uptight and rigid (which Meg Ryan always plays well). They go their separate ways but meet again five years later. After that chance meeting they meet again years later and suddenly find themselves best friends, which neither expected. And of course they fall in love with each other, which sounds great, but is incredibly complicated for Harry and Sally. I also love the supporting characters in this, Carrie Fisher and the late Bruno Kirby, whose romance begins in the funniest of ways. If you've never seen this, I think I might be ashamed of you. And I mean that.

#10 The Goonies

Oh yeah baby. The Goonies. What self-respecting kid who grew up in the 80's didn't like this movie? This movie is so symbolic of my childhood because my twin sister and I were such adventurers. After seeing this we made our own homemade treasure maps and went on our own quests for One Eyed Willy's jewels. It's just a fun movie all around--a bunch of misfit kids with some serious potty mouths trying to find some "rich stuff" to save their neighborhood all while being chased by the Fratellies, a family of escaped convicts. You just couldn't make this stuff up. What I also love about this movie is that it was one of Josh Brolin's first films, who I love looking at because he reminds me of my husband. He insists they look nothing alike, but I remember my husband at age 18, and trust me, he looked exactly like Brandon Walsh! You better love this movie or walk the plank. Arrr...

Okay, I'll admit, that was lame. I'm tired. Sue me.

So that's it. That's my top ten favorite movies of all time. I love so, so many movies that a top 100 would really be more appropriate for me, but that would make the longest post ever, and this one is already pushing it. So I hope you enjoyed the randomness.

Have a lovely weekend, everyone!

Tuesday, October 4, 2011

Little Things, Big Impact

I'm always saying, it's the little things. It's the little things that make me happiest, the little things that make me laugh more than anything (and usually the dorkiest things I might add), and the little things that mean so much to me, even though they may not mean much for others who may take them for granted. Those little things usually add up to one hefty impact.

Lately, I've been paying extra special attention to those little things--in terms of my weight loss--and decided that perhaps I should start keeping track of them...just in case I ever find myself slipping...

I'm confident of not slipping, though. I haven't always had the peaches to make a statement like that, but these days I'm saying it with gusto. I've got my non-slip shoes on and I'm not going anywhere.

This is all metaphorically speaking, of course. I once worked as a hostess in a bar and grill for three years and was required to wear non-slip shoes. Oh boy, you want to talk about ugly...

Anyways, here are the little things I have tallied thus far:

1. I can cross my legs again

2. I can bend over in the shower to shave my legs and no longer feel like I am going to pass out. (Once, over a year ago, I was bending over and actually felt so short of breath--you know, because my big gut was in the way--that when I stood up my head was spinning and I felt like I was going to collapse. Yeah, fun times.)

3. I recently discovered that when I sit on the floor with my legs out in front of me I can actually touch my toes again!

4. My favorite belt fits again. And I actually have use for it now rather than just being a wall ornament hanging on a nail inside my closet.

5. It no longer takes an act of God to paint my toenails.

6. Booths in restaurants look and feel a lot less intimidating.

7. I sleep better these days, and lately all through the night. (Sleep is something I've struggled with my whole life so this is a big one)

8. When I want a snack these days, I've found myself unconsciously reaching for fruit or raw almonds. I swear, I never saw that coming.

9. I have finally learned to like oatmeal! I have detested oatmeal my entire life--both the smell and the texture gave me the creeps. But I was determined to make myself like it because it's so darn good for you. David cooked me some and added some honey and banana to it, and what do you know...It took a while to get that first bowl down, but I'm now eating oatmeal regularly and enjoying it a lot. Wonders never cease.

10. My cravings have stopped. I know I've mentioned that in previous blogs, but it still floors me. Junk food has actually lost a lot of its appeal to me and I find that utterly amazing.

11. Going into stores--or anywhere really--feels less scary. It's a difficult thing to explain to someone who has never experienced it, but when you're really overweight, people--not all people, but many--are simply not very kind to you. Or they won't look at you. Or they will offer help to everybody around except you. Or they talk to you like you're an idiot. Whether they do it consciously or not, people can be really mean. And everybody wonders why I prefer most dogs to humans...

12. My hair, nails, and skin have never looked so good.

13. I'm no longer scared to go to the doctor. I used to dread, and I mean DREAD, going to the doctor for even just a simple check-up. I dreaded it because I knew as soon as they strapped that blood pressure thingy on my arm that they were going to tell me, "You know, your blood pressure is a little high for someone your age..." The last time I had an appointment I finally stopped getting that lecture. In fact, the last time I got blood work done I saw how well all of my stats improved and were all in the "healthy" range. It's a wonderful thing to not only get smaller but to get healthier.

14. My "Ugg" boots (okay, I'll admit it, they're not really Uggs. They're the Old Navy version, but I don't care. Real Uggs cost too much money!) that I bought last year in black and brown and used to have to sit on the floor and squirm like a pretzel to get on over my fat ankles (I refuse to use the word 'cankles' because they weren't quite that bad) now slip on to my feet with ease. In fact, I can stand up and slip my foot down into them without even holding them and my foot glides right in. It's going to be such a more relaxing winter...

15. I'm no longer horrified by pictures of myself. Well, of ones taken presently, that is. I'm now horrified when I see pictures of myself from only a year ago.

16. If I were to run into someone I haven't seen in a while today, I wouldn't hide. About a year and a half ago I was in Target and spotted one of my old neighbors who I was great friends with as a kid. I would have loved to have talked to him and caught up, but instead I actually ducked into an aisle and hid so he wouldn't see me. Oh, and also last year when I attended the funeral of an old childhood friend and classmate of mine from grade school and high school who passed away and found myself face to face with about 80% of my old high school classmates, I was so beyond mortified that I can't even begin to put it into words. I owed it to my old friend who died to be there because I needed to make peace with a few things between she and I from a long time ago, but that was the only reason I went. Other than that, I wanted so badly to sit in a corner with a heavy veil over my face and fade away.

17. My back hurts less when I'm standing around, doing the dishes for example. It's still a little achy (because I'm still pretty top heavy, if you get my drift...), but it's improving a lot and will hopefully keep getting better.

18. Going for walks actually makes me feel physically better.

19. It's getting easier and easier to say NO to things I don't want and to people who are trying to offer me something that I do not need. This has always been a toughy.

And finally,

20. My dear hubby can't keep his hands off of me. Me likey.

Now that I've probably grossed you all out, I'll leave you with a quote that I read yesterday that made me laugh hysterically for some reason...

"There are only two kinds of people who wear sunglasses at night. Blind people and assholes." --Larry David

Have a swell day...