It’s Not Fair

January 13, 2009

Today was my fifteenth day to work out on the Wii Fit.  It is always kind enough to tell me how many days it has been since I started working out.

It was also kind enough today to chew me out.  I now have three more pounds to lose than I did to begin with.

In two weeks, I have gained three pounds.  Insignificant, until you consider that I have been sticking carefully to a reasonable diet and working out diligently every day (except this weekend when I was struck with a breast infection–no bouncing for me!).

How can I eat less and burn more calories and still gain weight?  I know you gain some muscle mass at first, and that will temporarily boost your weight, but after two full weeks, shouldn’t it be tapering off at least a little?  Not be a full pound heavier than yesterday (while wearing fewer clothes and having had a very small breakfast two full hours ago)?

I’m utterly defeated.  I look at myself in the mirror and have to turn away.  Even my face is showing those extra twenty pounds.  None of my clothes can hide my pregnant-looking belly.  I feel like I look hideous, and I can’t understand how M can tell me I’m beautiful and hot with a straight face.

Speaking of M, he started watching what he eats around the same time I did.  He has cut the majority of the sugar out of his diet (but less than I have) and exercised once or twice for half the time I do every day.  He has lost those three pounds I have gained.  Doing almost nothing.  Tell me how that’s at all fair.

I’m tempted to just give up, throw the stupid Wii Fit out with the trash.  If only I could accept this new, unhealthy, unattractive me, then I might be able to do just that.  But I miss the old, healthier, skinnier version of me.  I know I’ll never look like I did before I had kids, but what I have turned into is unacceptable.

But there is nothing I can do to change that right now.  If exercise and diet don’t work, what’s left?  Why should I put myself through all the pain the exercise is bringing me and spend an hour a day doing something I don’t want to do if it’s only going to make me feel worse about myself?

Has anyone else had problems with this?  Please tell me I’m not the only anomaly out there who defies the weight-loss rules.


OMG

December 10, 2008

It’s snowing.

The last time it snowed here was December 25, 2004.  The time before that was February 1, 1994.  Yes, it happens infrequently enough that I can remember the specific dates.  This will be another day that goes down in history: December 10, 2008.

Even better is that it is the first time either of my children has seen snow.  Scooter was laughing hilariously at it, probably in response to my own reaction.  I have yet to see what PJ thinks since he’s at school right now, but I can’t wait to see what his reaction is.  Good thing his heavy coat that I’d ordered last week got here yesterday.  (By the way, yesterday we were a little warm in short sleeves, and today it is snowing.  That’s quite a cold front.)

Hopefully it will snow long enough that some will accumulate so I can get pictures of the first time the boys have played in snow.  Those will be some priceless pictures.


Need Baking Advice

October 22, 2008

Does anybody know of a good recipe for cookies that doesn’t require any eggs?  I’d particularly like sugar cookies, but I’m open to all suggestions.  Or do you have a good, easy substitute for eggs, one that you’ve tried and has worked well?


No, I Don’t Want Cheese with my Whine

October 20, 2008

I’ve been super lazy.  I haven’t had much to write about, so I’ve just been avoiding spewing out some pointless drivel.

Well, that isn’t entirely true.  While I would have been spewing out some pointless drivel, it would have been to avoid what I really wanted to talk about; it would have been to avoid coming across like I’m complaining.

So the short version is that I’m going through another spell of the achy joints.  I spent the weekend alternating between trying other possible remedies that M found online for me and hopelessness.  It’s been worse this time than I remember in the past.

M goes out of town later this week and is already talking about taking Friday off after getting back so late on Thursday night.  If he does, I may coax him to watch the kids so I can go see the doctor about this, if I’m still in pain then.  It lasted well over two weeks last time, so I think that’s likely.  Maybe by the weekend I’ll have a better idea what’s going on.

And that’s all I’m going to say about it until I know something.  I know I can be a baby when I don’t feel good, so I’m making a real effort not to this time around.  I’m biting my tongue when I want to complain to M, and I’m not going to go on and on about it here either.  Nobody likes a whiner.

Oh, speaking of whiners, PJ has either a bad allergy attack or a cold.  The poor kid feels pretty bad.  I hate that there’s so little I can do to help him feel better.  He definitely got his pain tolerance from me, though.  He just cries for ages over the tiniest little thing.  It frustrates me, partly because I don’t feel strong enough to handle it right now, but I totally understand where he’s coming from.  I just wish I could take it all away and make him feel normal again.

So I wonder if I should risk taking him to school tomorrow.  It’s mostly just a runny nose, no fever or anything.  He probably picked it up from school in the first place if it’s not just allergies.  He’s still been wanting to play and asked repeatedly today if he could “go see teacher” today.  I think he would do just fine at school, but I don’t want to risk exposing the other kids if it’s contagious.  I always had problems deciding whether I was sick enough to stay home; it’s much more difficult deciding whether PJ is sick enough, when I don’t even know just how he feels.  I guess I’ll have to see how he’s doing in the morning and make my final decision then.


Headache

June 26, 2008

I woke up this morning with what can only be a migraine.  It hurts to think right now.  If I can get it under control, I may show up to write something of substance later today.


What I’m Reading

June 17, 2008

I’m an avid reader.  I always have a book on my nightstand, and in my former, child-free days, I could and would read for hours at a time–sometimes all day, only taking bathroom breaks.  That’s even what I was doing while I timed my contractions during early labor with BabyN.

So you may wonder…if I read so much and love it so much, why is it so rarely mentioned here?  Well, there’s a good answer for that: I tend to read books that I suspect would be a little embarrassing to admit.

It wasn’t always that way.  I used to read whatever Oprah promoted, all the “popular” books of the moment.  I took suggestions from what people around me were reading.  Even now, I can catch the fads (like Harry Potter) and read them happily occasionally.  But most of these fad books are not the books I choose to read and reread over and over again.

The books that I choose to add permanently to my collection, the the ones I feel drawn back to repeatedly, they are the books I feel a little embarrassed about.  There is nothing at all wrong with them; it’s just that they’re not exactly ripe with literary depth.

You might remember I taught English for several years.  The other English teachers around me always knew the “in” books to be reading, and they would discuss their literary merits over lunch regularly.  I knew these were the books I should be reading as an English teacher because analyzing them would help me be a better teacher.

I tried, I really did.  They were good enough, if they tended to be a bit heavy–and I don’t mean just physical weight.  But they weren’t rereads.  They were the kind to showcase in your personal library to show off how literary you are.

When I would finish one of these books, I would always take a break and go back to my good old, immaturely-written Christian fiction.

Yep, that’s what I read most of the time.  It’s really not bad, and I’m sure there are worse things out there to admit to reading.  But they’re certainly not complicated books, and they certainly don’t have much literary merit, as I’m sure the other English teachers could attest to.  (Ha! I just ended my sentence in a preposition! That’s what I think of you English teachers!)

These books, however, are like good friends.  Their lack of complication and happy endings encourage me to spend time with them even when I have books from the “cool crowd” beckoning me as well.  Does it matter that the writing is oversimplified and immature and that the book is full of typos?  It only matters as much as the small flaws in a best friend; they are easily overlooked for all the good they hold.

I now have a whole huge bookcase stuffed with these favorites.  Many have the look of well-read books, and for good reason.  Not only have I read them numerous times, but they have had previous owners, thanks to my frugal shopping at secondhand book stores.  Any time I don’t have a new book to read sitting on my shelf, I reach for one of these yet again.

Here are a few of my favorites, by author:

–Lynn Austin: I started with Hidden Places and liked it enough to try some others.  My favorites are her two series, though.  I’m working on the second, longer series right now and am so addicted that it’s killing me to wait on the rest of the books to arrive in the mail (hopefully today!).

–Beverly Lewis: She writes about the Amish, and there is something about the culture and the way she portrays it that keeps me wanting to know more.  These books are particularly predictable, but that only makes them more appealing sometimes.  My favorite is her series, Abram’s Daughters.

–Janette Oke: The first Christian fiction author I ever read, she’s still probably my favorite.  I own every book she’s written and have read them all at least twice.  I try to read through them all every year or two.  Although they are easily the least complicated of all the Christian fiction I’ve read, the characters are so lovable that it doesn’t matter.  The best series in my opinion is still her first, the Love Comes Softly series (and the Lifetime movies are nothing like the books, if you’ve seen them).

–Francine Rivers: Without a doubt, she is the best Christian fiction author I’ve ever read.  Her books are more than just good stories or good characters but could probably even satisfy those other English teachers.  It sounds cliche to say it but Redeeming Love probably changed my life.  I also love her Mark of the Lion series.

I’ve read some others, but these four authors are the ones who really resonate with me and what I’m looking for in a book.

In about a week or so, I’ll be finished with all the new books I have right now.  When that happens, I’m sure I’ll find myself back in front of my Christian fiction bookshelf (yes, I have my books organized by genre–then by author’s last name, then by order within the series, then by order written) reaching for one of these books yet again.

Have any of you read much in the way of Christian fiction?  Are there any books and/or authors I didn’t mention that you would recommend I try?  I’m always looking for new books, even if that means putting of a reread of my favorites temporarily.


Flatland Mountains

May 6, 2008

The area around the small town where I spent the first 12 years of my life is flat.  And by flat, I don’t mean just a little hilly; I mean FLAT.  There are very few trees, and the few that are there are short and bushy.  Once you leave town, you can see out forever in every direction.  The same goes for the area where I went to college.  On clear days (and let’s face it–they’re nearly all clear), you can see the curvature of the earth at the horizon.  Yes, it is that flat.

I remember how much fun we used to have going to the park in my original hometown.  The drive there was dramatic because it boasted the only hill in town.  All four of us kids would get reverently quiet as we approached the hill, then squeal as we coasted down it.  “Mommy, I think we left my tummy back there at the top!”  The drive and that monstrous hill were much more exciting than the lame park itself.

Looking back, I highly doubt that hill could be any taller than about fifteen feet.  Hardly worth the dramatics, wouldn’t you say?

Well, that’s my life.

I have a wonderful marriage.  We are rarely at odds with each other, and when we are, it’s usually hormone- or blood sugar-related.  Conflicts are resolved within about an hour of occurring.

The same goes for my job.  My boys are pretty normal, and even when PJ is about to drive me insane, I still can’t help but love him.

My family?  They’re quirky but lovable.  I swear we were trying to be the Brady bunch or something when we were growing up.  Now we’re the Brady bunch with potty humor.

Even M’s family is pretty normal.  Yes, they clearly have their issues, but it’s nothing like I hear about from many of you.

With my life so “flat,” it’s no wonder that every little hill in the way seems like a mountain to me.  I look for drama in every situation and attempt to make even the most minor conflicts into ones worthy of any soap opera.  I know that sounds silly, because who really wants that kind of drama in their life?  They’d be much happier if life didn’t hand them this drama–and here I go making my own.

It is this phenomenon of making mountains out of road bumps that leads to things like tiffs with a neighbor over taunting my dog, or one-sided arguments with my brother over stolen gift ideas, or frustration with the in-laws for overspoiling my kids.  Sure, they’re worthy of a reaction, but not to the extent I have devoted to them.

And you know what?  I’m okay with that.  As long as I recognize this tendency and keep these one-sided issues confined in my own head, never letting on to the other people involved that I’m upset with them over nothing, I’d much rather be in this situation.  Creating drama of my own is much preferable to taking whatever drama life chooses to hand me.  After all, yes, I do realize just how lucky I am.