Weekly Weight: 204.8 lbs

July 24th, 2020

In case you are wondering, yes that is exactly the weight from last week. But it is official. I found a bit of fluff stuck under the battery. Apparently someone checked the batteries while it was in my baby doll’s office (they were shipping a few things from the archives and needed an extra scale). Anyway the bit of fluff, small though it was, ended up being enough to throw its measurements out of whack when I tried to weigh me last friday.

However this week I had to go to the doctor’s office.

The bunnies got me.

Or at least the holes in the yard got me. I stepped in one and wrenched my ankle. It swelled to the size of a grapefruit so I went and had it checked out just in case. Nothing is broken but appearently in addition to twisting the ankle I bruised the bone (on a rock on the ground next to the bunny hole), which is why it felt like more than just a twisted ankle. So I’ll take it easy this weekend and next week ease into a workout that doesn’t involve too much activity for my right ankle.

It looks like there will be much chair dancing with arm weights in my future. maybe I will put together that work out sound track after all.

It was a crazy week. Our air condition was not up to the temperatures and went kerflooey. It was bearable in the day time in parts of the house with the fans running although I did end up with a more or less ongoing heat headache. Sleeping was the issue as it was hard to stay asleep in the heat.

But the repair man came. We were low on coolant although he couldn’t find a leak so he filled it and we will be monitoring it. We’re hoping for about five more years before we have to replace it.

When the air came back on I wanted to hug the masked repair man. I didn’t, but I wanted to. And last night in the newly chilled house, my baby and I went to bed early and slept like we had been clubbed over the head. It was glorious.

So while heat made my workouts early and rabbits kept the workouts mild I didn’t actually gain any weight. So I’m calling that a win. And the weight is official. I was weighed in at the doctor’s office and when I came home I immediately went to my scale to see the difference between the two and it registered the exact same weight as the doctor’s office. So things are officially calibrated. or as official as I plan to get. I’m sure there is some mathematical equation to determine why my scale should have registered slightly different due to time and distance, but I don’t care. It is close enough for me and as the only thing I really want the scale for is to monitor progress I’m good. Well actually the only thing I want it to do is to let me know when I get under the two hundred pound mark and that my weight starts with a one but I also want to know it isn’t a big fat liar when it does. So I remain happy.

So to the stats!

Starting Weight: 246.0lbs

Last week’s weight: who knows

This week’s weight: 204.8 lbs

Weight lost thus far: 41.2 lbs

Weight left to lose (apx.): 81.8 lbs

I will get there. or in some approximation of there soon. I didn’t think the lockdown would throw me off as badly as it did but it seems like I’ve mostly been holding my own rather than losing. I had a lovely conversation with my doctor about that too when I went to the doctor, so I might have to thank the bunnies. Or at least not chase them with the hose so much. Once my ankle is less tender, I have a plan for a few changes. So we will see how it goes.

And I will leave this post with a reminder that for those of you who are looking for something new to read, the Smashwords Annual Summer Sale is still going on. It runs through July 31st. Many of my books are 50% off right now with some of them even being free. And if my books aren’t to your taste, no worries, there are literally thousands of authors participating in the sale so I am sure you will find something to your taste. My newest book will, alas not come out until August, but there are still books galore. And yes I will put in a shameless plug when my book is finally out (I’m super proud of it). But if you are looking for a new read, I highly suggest the book sale. the above link will take you to my books but to get to the general site just go to smashwords.com.

bareminerals Claymates Be Pure for the Friday Facemask

bareMinerals Claymates Mask Duo

So, today I did paperwork.  I got sweaty outside.  I took a shower to get clean,and then did a bunch of editing.  Now it is time for the Friday Face Mask.  Bring on the clowns,  er …clay. Yeah clay.

Today felt like a clay mask kind of day.  If you’ve been following along with my Friday face masks you have probably seen this jar before.  I think it might have been featured in one of my first Face Mask Friday’s to be honest.  It is the Bare Minerals Claymates Duo Be Pure Be Dewy.  It is a mask with two sides.  I reviewed the Dewy side and I have used both since, but I don’t think I’ve posted about the Be Pure side. 

Today I felt like using it.  On a hot sticky day, relaxing with a cold mask of clay is amazingly refreshing.  Sometimes in the summer time I get head headaches.  When I do pounding back water and using a clay mask helps take the headache away.  Its like the ultimate cold compress.  Not that that is in anyway a part of any mask’s description.  But what is in the Claymates description?

Mask on

Customize your face mask routine with two complimentary formulas that work to target specific skin concerns — just apply each mask for the benefit you want to see, right where it’s needed most. These mineral-rich clay masks also contain fruit extracts to help purify and refine the skin.

Deeply cleanse, purify, and refine the look of pores with Be Pure, a white clay mask infused with white grapefruit and white pear extracts, which help dissolve dirt and impurities. Try the gently warming mask on areas that need a deeper cleaning, such as the T-zone and chin. Skin is left feeling and looking purified and clearer.

I have to say, I didn’t feel any warming.  I just felt the cool of clay. It was nice.  I lay down with my candles flickering and my mask on and for fifteen minutes I didn’t think about anything.  The world was a nice quiet well ordered place. Then of course the fifteen minutes were over and reality resumed.  It was a nice break though and at the end, my skin was fantastic.  We’ve entered the season where to keep my skin balanced I’ll need to alternate between hydrating masks and purifying ones so that everything stays balanced. It’s usually not that bad, but with the extra workouts and the sun, it will be an interesting path to walk this summer. 

Receive 15% off your first order when sign up for bareMinerals emails.

During my fifteen minutes the Be Pure mask dried down but it wasn’t rock hard and was relatively easy to remove.  What I ended up doing is wetting a wash cloth and gently pressing the wet wash cloth into the dried mask.  The mask absorbed the water but the washcloth didn’t get saturated with mask.  The trick is to press gently and not to rub at all.  If you rub, the mask just gets caught in the wash cloth fibers and becomes a mess. Once damped down it was an easy mask to remove and well worth it.  My skin felt infinitely clearer than it did prior to the mask.

Mask off

I really liked this clay mask on the Be Pure side.  To be honest I like it better than the Be Dewy side.  I’ll still use the Be Dewy side, and I understand its use in multi-masking, I just get more of a benefit from the Be Pure side.  I don’t know if the masks are sold separately, but if they are I would purchase the Be Pure on its own.  I’m not entirely sure I would purchase the Be Dewy side. I think it is definitely worth poking around on the Bareminerals site to see if it is available. 

And with that, my Friday Face mask is complete and I can go back to editing.  One of my background characters decided that they wanted a larger role in the story and somehow became integral to the plot when I wasn’t looking, so I’m having to revisit earlier chapters to make sure his involvement makes sense. But at least the story is moving along. The writing I like, the editing may eventually kill me.

Hopefully I can get it all sorted before the end of the day. If so there is a lovely glass of red wine awaiting me. It’s left over from the slow braised short ribs currently in the oven. It is one of my baby’s favorites and he wanted some Friday comfort food this week so I made it for him. It’s one of those dishes that doesn’t take a lot of effort, but does take a lot of time.  At this point it still has a few hours to go and the scent has perfumed the entire house. The aroma mocked my lunch salad.

We really only eat meat once a week, so when we do, I like to make it count.  And there was enough wine left over for a glass or for each of us to have with the meal.  Mostly because the meat took about a bottle and half to make because there was only one really large packet of short ribs in the store when we went. I think it might have been originally packaged for a restaurant rather than home use, but then got diverted to the grocery.  We will definitely have leftovers but luckily this tends to freeze really well.

So on to the edits and then later to the wine and dinner. Then I will spend the weekend investigating a new yoga mat and additional at home gym equipment.  I don’t know what you have planned this weekend but I hope you have a fabulous Friday and an excellent weekend.


Weekly Weight: 207.2 lbs

April 24th, 2020

I’ll admit, 0.2 lbs isn’t much of a loss, but I am happy with it. To be honest, I wasn’t entirely certain there would be a loss this week. After some debate, this week we actually left the house for a grocery run. It was a very quick one, mostly to pick up fresh veg (is it strange that the sight of fresh spinach made me giddy?) we decided to support one of our local restaurants who are still doing take out.

I have to say, take out food has never felt so clandestine.

We called in our order and were given an approximate time and told we would be called from the parking lot. At the appropriate time we pulled into the parking lot and saw we weren’t the only ones waiting. As we waited we saw other people receive their order. The person dispensing the orders would walk out place the to go box on a cloth covered restaurant style trolly (it looked like something a fancy old school place would wheel deserts around on. As this is a mexican place and they never wheeled anything around I’m guessing that it was used for another purpose, but that’s what it looked like). He then backed away and made a call on his cell phone. A person would exit one of the vehicles and walk over to pick up their order while being watched from the man standing six feet away. They would take their food and then he would whisk the cloth napkin away, toss it in a bin with the word WASH/LAVAR printed on it in sharpie. A new cloth was then laid down and the process repeated.

No one said a single word.

There were nods and the occasional smile. well from patrons anyway. The staff member of the restaurant was wearing both gloves and a face mask.

It felt a little nefarious.

But let me tell you those enchiladas were so worth the relay system. I over ate, but I can’t really regret it. Its the first meal I haven’t cooked in a while. The next day my body was not happy with me about the over indulgence and protested the mass quantities of gooey melted cheese and the restaurant level sodium content. I could actually feel my fingers swell.

But we supported a locally owned restaurant we love and restocked on fresh veg. So all is well. even though our governor is lifting a lot of the restrictions next week, it is doubtful we will leave the house for supplies for another few weeks at least. we are well stocked. So I have plenty of time to get over the mass of cheesey goodness.

I know, the excitements right now are small ones, but still kind of fun.

So the stats:

Starting Weight: 246 lbs

Last Week’s weight: 207.4 lbs

This Week’s Weight: 207.2 lbs

Weight lost this week: 0.2 lbs

Weight lost thus far: 38.8 lbs

Weight left to lose (apx).: 84.2 lbs

So that is all for my Friday update. I will see you all back here this afternoon for the Friday Face Mask. Hope everyone has a great Friday!

I’m pasting a couple of sale codes below for use by those looking to restock beauty supplies from home. Hope they help.

No. 7: Shop with No7 and receive 20% off serums, plus receive $5 off when you spend $25 Code: SAVE5End Date: 4/26/20

Benefit Cosmetics: Score free shipping on all orders at benefitcosmetics.com. Use code: FREESHIP. Valid through April 30, 2020.

Weekly Weight: 207.4 lbs

April 17, 2020

I will say, there was a happy dance this morning when I saw the numbers were decreased from last week. I think the main reason they went down this week was that the rain finally stopped the flooding left the park and the walking trail was again opened. Also the recent cold snap brought in by the rain meant that I was one of the few people in the park. There were a couple of people, mostly walking dogs with thick fur coats.

One of my neighbors has a Bernese Mountain dog who looked like he was just sprung from prison. His owner was thankful that she had yet to give him his summer hair cut.

A fact she told me from across the wide expanse of the eight foot trail as we each held tightly to our sides, hers a more trying effort as the dog wanted to make new friends. Apparently he’s having issues with social distancing. Of course he also had issues with his attempts to make friends with the herons who have more or less taken up the creek side of the park. I’m guessing they arrived with the rains as several looked confused that the lake covering the trail and surrounding flat land covered by the overflowing creek was now gone.

I’m not sure if it was an accident, surprise from the Bernese, or retaliation for invading the park the herons now claimed as their own, but when taking off one of them dropped a fish on me.It was only about four inches long and more rounded than long and it was still wiggling. I didn’t realize the creek had more than minnows.

I have to say, people may be having a hard time with staying at home and not conducting their lives as usual, but the wildlife, at least in my area, seems to be having a blast with the change in the status quo. While there are always birds in our park, especially at this time of year, at the moment they seem to have taken over.

While I use the trail nearly daily, the bulk of the people who are on the trail during the day come from the large office buildings and private (year round) school that back up onto the park and walking trail. I know the businesses have their own interconnected walking trail for employees only that ties into the public one and the school’s play area is adjacent to it. With the schools and office buildings (they are corporate offices I think) all closed with only one or two staff to check on the buildings now and again, the use of the walking trail has gone down significantly.

Luckily, the birds are of different varieties or I would feel as though I was walking into an Alfred Hitchcock movie.

They stare but they look more confused by my presence (and those walking dogs) than anything else. Kinda fun. Other than that it has been a quiet week. My seedlings are almost to the point where I can take them out of the green house and start hardening them in the day time at least for preparation for being left out overnight. I am already snipping off mint and oregano to dry in the oven for teas and seasoning and I can tell you that after limiting my fresh veg because of grocery store avoidance, I have been very focused on my tomato seedlings and lettuce beds.

While the tomatoes will have to wait until high summer, at which point I will probably be buried under them considering how many I planted this year (Lycopene for everybody!) I know I’m going to have to hold back on thinning the salad veg too aggressively.

I can honestly say when I started my diet, I never thought I would actually miss salad. Oh, how the world has changed in a year.

As you can probably tell, it was a relatively quiet week here, which given the alternative, suits me fine. So, as you’ve been caught up on my world,to the stats.

Starting weight: 246 lbs

Last week’s weight: 208.6 lbs

This week’s weight: 207.4 lbs

Weight lost this week: 1.2 lbs

Weight lost thus far: 38.6 lbs

weight left to lose (apx.) 84.4 lbs

So there you have it my darlings, not to shabby a week. Now it is time for me to get back to work, even if the back of my brain is still trying to plot out how to defend the lettuces against the brigade of rabbits already plotting their invasion strategies. There will more than likely be chicken wire in my future. There will also be a face mask this afternoon. I received two really interesting ones in subscription boxes this month so I have to decide which one I want to use first by this afternoon.Tune in later to see which I go for. Until then, have a great Friday.

Also I have a code for a special discount from Annmarie Skincare. You can use the code EXCLUSIVE20 for a 20% off coupon. It isn’t mentioned on the site, its an exclusive code for me (as an affiliate, so me and the other affiliates) to share with you. I get nothing from the code, but if you make a purchase after clicking the below link I do get a small compensation. I’m fine if you want to use the code but not the link, should that bother you. I highly recommend their herbal face wash and the purifying mud mask. I’ve actually already re-ordered the mud mask. Not only is it fantastic on the skin but you get to feel like a mad scientist as you mix it with water. Very fun. Plus you get to choose your own consistency. The Sample kits are a good way to try out their serums as the $10 kits come with a $10 coupon to be used on another purchase. Anyway just thought I’d share the coupon with you should you be inclined to shop.

sample kit

Weight Loss Regime Survival Tip #46: Why Bother?

a new pair of shoes and moving forward one step at a time

I had this conversation with a friend of mine the other day and it really stuck with me. We’ll call my friend Jane for the sake of this post and to respect her privacy. She and I have very similar weight issues, i.e. far too much of it and no actual underlying health issues that aren’t weight related (like joint pain from feet being asked to carry too much weight). I think I started in about two lbs heavier than she was, but as I was 246 that put her at 244. For the past year we have both been inching along with our weight loss.

We were also meeting up once every week or so for moral support (and because our gym schedules happened to allign). I haven’t actually seen her since February at this point though.

When I spoke to her a few nights back she said that she wasn’t going to bother even thinking about her weight until the world returned to something more stable. Her argument was, quite simply, Why bother? Why bother focusing on weight loss when there are so many more important things to focus on right now? She even went so far as to put her scale in the cupboard.

I didn’t argue with her as weight and its loss are both very personal things that need to be dealt with individually, but I thought about what she said. I thought about it a lot.

And I have to say I disagree.

First off, I would like to say that, you should still pay attention to what is going on in the world. Sticking your head in the sand isn’t going to help you, although holing up like a hibernating bear might. Like most people I am following the news. However, there comes a point where paying too much attention is likely to drive me mad and having something other than the outside world to pay attention to has helped me tremendously.

While I am always thrilled when the scale shows me a lower number, and every weight loss no matter how small is celebrated by a happy dance, my goal at this time is merely not to gain weight. My weekly step on the scale is more of a monitoring process and part of my weekly routine.

Don’t get me wrong, I am still trying to lose weight, but I am more forgiving with myself than usual.

I find routines very important. Its why I started doing the weekly weigh in to begin with. I wanted a consitent day and time to step onto the scale to monitor my progress, lack of progress or even set backs. It keeps me honest and because I am sharing it with you, accountable.

Maintaining that routine makes me feel a bit more normal. In addition, at this point in my world because my weight loss plan involves monitoring my caloric intake and my exercising I sort of know how many calories I need to consume each day. With several week’s worth of groceries on hand, monitoring my weight each week actually helps me avoid some of my stress eating. Even if I only see my baby and no one else, I am still accountable to the scale each week. If I gain a bunch of weight, it probably means I am stress eating and need to stop.

If only so we don’t run out of groceries.

Being able to monitor the groceries also provides a level of comfort for me. Which is why I still have as healthy a meal plan as I can create at this point in time without constantly running out to the store for fresh veg and relying on a lot of frozen and dried produce from the freezer. Also much of that came from last year’s garden and needs to be cleared out as this year’s garden gets underway.

So the clearing out is actually a productive thing.

Adding workouts to my schedule despite not having access to the gym not only lets me build in breaks to my day, it also helps me relieve stress by focusing on just the way my body moves instead of following numerical progressions across the face of the globe. It not only keeps me active, which most doctors agree is a good thing, but I am doing exercises that force me to focus on my breathing.

During the exercise, whether I am following along with a Youtube yoga or five pound weight video or following along with the Planet Fitness Facebook page (my most common sources for videos) or walking around the neighborhood to stretch my legs in the sunshine between the rainstorms, there is my breath.

Steady in and steady out.

Not only does the action calm me, but as I don’t have any problems with the breathing in and out, I am also reassured that I am still healthy. I am reminded that I am fine.

No matter what news story I just finished watching.

While I respect my friend Jane and her decision not to even think about her weight or the scale for a while, for me, I believe there is ample reason to still bother monitoring my weight, even if it isn’t strictly to help with loss, and to maintain my workout routine, even if it isn’t completely for exercise.

I still focus on the outside world, but spending a little time focusing on myself actually helps me maintain a good balance so that I can deal with events without being overwhelmed. I know this isn’t technically speaking any sort of dieting tip, but I wanted to state why I am continuing with these posts the way they are. Hopefully you find the posts an enjoyable break from what’s going on in your life.

As for me, (and the lead photo for this post) my current pair of sneakers wore out and I just received their replacement. Actually my baby doll ordered the replacement based on a previous order. I was going to test out a different shoe this time around, but I forgot to tell him I was going to order them, so I have these.

I actually checked my chart and it was this time last year that I started monitoring my mileage on the shoes to see how many miles I got out of them before they were replaced. At that time I was alternating between the gym and the walking trail. At the moment, I am exclusively walking in the neighborhood and the walking trail. I think it just might be an interesting contrast to see how long this pair lasts compared to the others.

And yes that is another thing for me to keep track of, another item to add to my routine. I am by nature a list maker and I find this soothing. Hopefully you find it entertaining. So I will record this set of shoes for their mileage and compare it to last year. Then I’ll branch out to a different pair of shoes. maybe Reebok or Adidas next time instead of New Balance. We’ll see, for now the important thing is to just keep moving, one step at a time.

Face Mask Friday Super Green Detox

Like pretty much everyone in the world at this point, it has been a bit stressful for me this week.  I know that’s a bit like saying rain is wet, but for me this means I’ve had more breakouts than usual.  So in addition to using my face mask Friday as a moment to relax and just be in my skin rather than worry about the rest of the world, I chose my mask with my skin in mind.

I used a sheet mask today, partially because it had the properties I wanted and partially because I’m always a little hesitant to get involved in anything I can’t drop in an instant after something happens.  Wednesday we had to go to the ER and managed to get out of the house in less than two minutes. Everything is fine, no lasting damage and my baby has a new prescription but a sheet mask I could take off in a flash made me more comfortable in my relaxing than a regular mask would today.

The sheet mask I chose was the Super Green Detox Kale and Charcoal Detox Facial Mask from Pacifica. I have used these several times in the past and I have to say they are one of my favorite sheet masks, especially when my skin is acting up due to stress.  It is designed to alleviate clogged pores and to deal with blemish prone skin types. While that isn’t normally me, I do like to keep these on hand for moments where they are needed.  I sometimes get hormonal breakouts but I am partial to stress related breakouts. Just masking in general helps me settle and the charcoal and nutrient goodness helps calm a bit of the break outs so they disappear faster.

100 percent vegan and cruelty free. Shop now at PacificaBeauty.com!

Yup breathing deeply, lighting candles (I’m using my Fern and Leather candle from this month’s Vella box if you are trying to build a sensory picture in your head. I’ll pretty much be using it until next month’s box to be honest.) and charcoal, the secret to dealing with stress related breakouts. At least for me.

When I opened the package I took a sniff.  Are you surprised?  I smell everything. The scent was fresh and green, a fact I am pretty sure is a combination from the kale, cilantro and green tea.  It is a clean and fresh scent. 

The mask is black which I’m guessing is due to the charcoal.  One interesting feature of the mask is that the eye holes are heart shaped.  While cute, I personally am not a fan of the hears over the eyes. And no it isn’t that I don’t like hearts, it is that they leave too much of my under eye exposed and the little point comes down too far over my eyelid.  I had to move it around a bit and get the heart all bent out of shape for it to work right for me.

I’m sure there is a metaphor in there somewhere, but we’ll just leave it be for now.

The shape of the eye cuts outs are really the only thing I don’t care for in this mask.  Once I realigned the holes so my eyes were just right, I lay down for twenty minutes of quiet.  It was really nice.  The mask tingled in a pleasing way that made me feel like it was working.

And it was quite soothing. 

Even if i did look like a romantically inclined bank robber.

When the time was up, I took off the mask and patted the serum into my skin.  For some reason it is only after I pat the remaining serum in that this mask starts to feel really cool against my skin.  It tingles when it is on and cools when removed.  My skin felt refreshed.  I think it also helped that I was in a room with the windows shut while I rested in my mask.  Tree pollen is really high today and the bedroom has the air purifier running so laying down with the mask and breathing the extra clean air didn’t hurt.  It probably gave the mask a helping hand so I feel less puffy eyed than I did earlier. Which is a nice side benefit, although I can’t really credit the mask entirely for that.  I can say that post masking, I will be staying inside and flushing my system out with as much water as I can possibly handle. On the days when I have inhaled too much pollen, flooding my system is actually the perfect way to go for me.

Free gifts on all orders over $25. Only at Pacifica Beauty!

Luckily we have a new air cartridge in the Soda Stream for me to use.  I might actually play a game with myself to ensure the water is consumed. I’m planning to full up all of my water bottles with carbonated water and see how many I can empty before dinner. As I have a couple of water bottles on their last legs this game might be the last hurrah for them before they make their way to the recycling bin.

I know it’s not much of a game but if I’m going to tackle the last of my early spring gardening chores this weekend, I need to start with a clean system. Otherwise the trees will take me down.

So the pre-weekend allergy season cleansing began with the Super Green Detox mask from Pacifica and twenty minutes of calm breathing. Not a bad start, although this was the last Pacifica sheet mask I had in my collection.  As allergy season is only just kicking off, I’m going to need to order a restock as I suspect the trees aren’t done with me yet.  I don’t know what everyone out there has planned for their weekend, but I hope you have a fun, and safe one.

Pacifica Beauty

SodaStream USA, inc

Weekly Weight: 208.6 lbs

April 10, 2020

This has been a week, let me tell you. I know I’ve mentioned that my darling dearest has high blood pressure. I think I’ve said that he has allergies. It turns out that when these two get together and combine with stress (which let’s face it, we are all currently living with in some form or another at the moment) it makes him feel as though he is having a heart attack.

Which is what happened Wednesday.

So off we drove to the nearest medical facility. I have to say the mostly clear roadways because people were staying home were very much appreciated. At least in retrospect. I wasn’t thinking much as I drove.

Now here’s the thing. Our nearest medical facility, is a hospital.

To get to the regular emergency room we had to get through an additional security check point so everyone knew it was a regular emergency and not a pandemic reltated one.

While I am very pleased with their precautions, I hope never to have to describe a possible heart attack as a ‘regular’ emergency ever again. The end rsult was that since he was mobile I had to drop him off outside the emergency room entrance and let him walk in alone as though it was the first day of school.

The attendant with the clipboard (who i’m sure is some sort of medical professional and was wearing a mask) suggested I run errands while I wait for him to call me with an update.

Yup, errands.

During a pandemic with a statewide stay at home mandate in place.

I stared at him somewhat incredulously and he turned red and said, ‘or you could just pull into the parking lot.’

I pulled into the parking lot to wait.

Hospital security circled past several times to make sure I wasn’t causing trouble by sitting by myself in my vehicle trying not to look at the phone every three minutes. It was a long and not very pleasant wait, but in the end it was not a heart attack but a combination of other elements. So he is okay. He received a new prescription and the recommendation that he avoid the news for a few days.

Yesterday we filled the prescription and stocked up on fresh veg (since the pharmacy is in the grocery store). It’s the first time we’d been in a while but I was pleased to see people actually maintaining distance and wearing masks. we wore masks too.

It is a very strange experience to wear a mask in the grocery store. It is even stranger to see many of the scarves and bandanas used as homemade masks in the store. It was as though the grocery was invaded by multiple thieves who also needed milk. It was like a bad parody of a hold-up. But even the clerks were masked. It was what it needed to be but it still looked more like a bad movie than reality. I think if there had been fewer homemade masks it would have been a different story.

There were a lot of bandannas.

So needless to say, it has been a stress filled two days although it did come with a nice ending with new medication and no heart attack.

And as non-routine as it was, I did step on the scale today and was pleasantly surprised to see it go down. As I’ve rambled enough, we will go ahead with the stats.

Starting weight: 246 lbs

Last week’s Weight: 209.2 lbs

This week’s weight: 208.6 lbs

Weight lost this week: 0.6 lbs

Weight lost thus far: 37.4 lbs

Weight left to lose (apx.): 85.6 lbs

So after my exciting week I am looking forward to a stress relieving face mask this afternoon and a quiet weekend trying to pull the last remaining weeds in between rainstorms. My big excitement this weekend includes baking a batch of hot cross buns and doing facetime with the relatives who did not descend on my place for easter this year. It will be quiet, but after this week, I need a bit of quiet. I hope this weekend you get exactly what you need as well. I’ll see you this afternoon for the Friday Face mask. Until then, have a good one.

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Weight Loss Regime Survival Tip #45: Obnoxious Heels

The pink crushed velvet heels too high for everyday use but somehow I can’t part with them. Who knew they’d be a weight loss tool?

At the moment more people are working from home than ever before. Other people, while not working from home, are nevertheless staying within their homes in an effort to help avoid spreading contamination.  I, and everyone else I’m certain, appreciates it.  At least I believe they do. 

I didn’t take a poll or anything, but I’ll let the statement stand.

If you are at home, working or not, you may find that within very easy reach of the place you’ve settled for the day is the kitchen, pantry, and the stockpile of snacks and other tasty treats you picked up to see you through the next month or so.

Maybe it’s the Easter candy you bought early calling you or the extra bag of chips you’ve stashed away for when you REALLY need a snack whispering that time is NOW. 

Perhaps you’ve been stress baking and there is now a very lovely carrot cake sitting under a cloche in your kitchen because you figured playing with your cake decorating tips would relax you and the last time you went to the store they didn’t have small bags of carrots so you picked up the one ten pound bag of carrots they had and then found yourself giving into your love of carrot cake just because others were mocking the vast amount of carrots now lurking in your kitchen.

As an example.

I’m just saying temptations lurk. 

And when you are working at home, they aren’t too hard to find.  It was one of my downfalls when I started working from home.  Drifting through the kitchen for a cup of coffee and adding a cookie or bowl of pretzels or handful of whatever, was one of the things that helped add to my weight in the first place. And it was one of the first habits I had to change when I decided to lose weight.  While I have shared with you my lipstick trick (no snacking with sticky lips) one thing I haven’t shared, it the obnoxious heels trick.

Now, I will say, that most of my shoes are fairly sensible. I have the sneakers for working out, I have the shoes I use to run errands and the shoes I use for meetings.  I have the all purpose black pumps I can wear all day long on the few days I need to dress up for an entire day and I have some more decorative heels for social events and dinners out for when my baby and I have our nights on the town.

But lurking in the back of my closet, I have a couple of pairs of obnoxious heels.

You know the kind I mean. 

They were bought for a time when girl’s night out with me and my single friends was a routine affair. You know, the shoes that look gorgeous on the shelf, make your legs look fantastic, and make you feel sexy for about an hour before they turn into hard points of pain causing you to drink until your feet go numb and to very strategically choose which song you really want to try dancing to.

Most of them left my closet before my weight started to increase as life settled into more steady rhythms and girl’s night out shifted from dancing in a club to either lunch or dinner out at a nice restaurant. And became fewer and further between. Club wear in general disappeared as most everyone showed up in what they wore to the office that day.

And while there have been many clothing purges, there are still a couple of pairs of obnoxious heels, lurking because I just can’t get rid of them. They are too high to wear for long periods of time, at least at my current weight and probably still after if I’m completely honest, but I just can’t part with them. They just look so pretty.

So now, they get a chance to earn their place. 

When I know there is something that I will find hard to resist, like the aforementioned carrot cake, my far too high heels come out of the closet to help me out.  That’s right. If I have a video conference I may look nice from the waist up, if not, I’m wearing some form of t-shirt. Below the desk I usually have pajama or yoga pants on, depending on what was clean in the drawer when I dressed for the day. I learned early on that even if I wear pajama pants while I work I have to put on a fresh pair when I get up otherwise I feel like I haven’t started my day.

But with those pants, I will often have an obnoxious pair of heels strapped to my feet.  While I generally feel good about them when I am going to and from the desk to get my morning coffee, by the time my coffee is done, I am pretty much over walking in them. At that point I remember that these are the shoes that require gin and vermouth to wear for any length of time and that a martini is not a good idea at ten in the morning.

Especially if you still want to get things done with your day.

At that point there becomes very little that can tempt me to get up from my desk chair and walk the length of the house to the kitchen. My booty stays glued to the chair and the extra calories stay in the kitchen.  Oddly enough I also find myself being super productive on those days too. I tend to focus on whatever task I’ve set myself so that I ignore my feet. So if you are having a hard time settling into working from home, this might be a productivity tip for you rather than an anti-snacking method.

And if nothing else, it gives you a reason to wear those pretty, yet super impractical heels you just can’t manage to part with, yet know aren’t really feasible in your daily life. Who knows, perhaps they’ll even match your pajama pants.

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Show your glow with the Friday Face Mask

Good afternoon my darlings and welcome to the Friday Face Mask. I hope you have had a good morning. While I got a fair amount done this morning, I also took a call from my mother who informed me that she has decided to stop watching the news and is now re-watching all of the old movies in her collection.  She’s decided that if she interspaces her DVD selections with the Hallmark Channel Movies she can entertain herself between bouts of cleaning and purging for months. My brother is restocking her groceries as needed and has decided someone will either tell her when she can leave the house again or the apocalypse is truly neigh and she will never need to leave her house again.

I sort of got the impression that the deep down cleaning is actually in case there is a full on apocalypse. Because one doesn’t want to leave a mess at the end of the world.

That would be rude.

And while I don’t think the world is ending, after the call I went to the kitchen and did all of the dishes. Not because I don’t want to be rude to an incoming apocalypse (although I don’t) but because we are out of butter knives. 

My darling dearest likes to take the occasional snack break throughout the day.  For some reason this seems to involve dipping a butter knife into the peanut butter jar, coating it and then licking the knife off as his snack.  He doesn’t double dip, he only goes in once and then puts the knife in the sink. But he does this three times a day, which sort of uses up our supply of butter knives.  And yes I asked him why he doesn’t use a spoon.  Apparently the spoon gets too much peanut butter. I also asked and yup, he does keep a small jar of peanut butter and a knife in his desk drawer in the office too.

The things you learn, huh?

Anyway, the morning is settled and this afternoon I am going to attempt to pull weeds.  The ground is wet enough for them to come up pretty easily but it is not actually raining and not terribly warm outside.  We had frost last night, but not a deep one so the ground isn’t frozen. Before this though, I am taking a moment of relaxation (20 minutes in fact) with my Friday face mask.

I put it on a little early because my work was already interrupted by the call and dishes. Today’s selection was the Hey Honey Show Your Glow Colloidal Gold and Honey Beauty mask.  It was a deluxe sample size that came in an IPSY box and it is the sort of size where I can get between 3-5 uses out of depending on how full the tube actually is.  Hey Honey is usually pretty good about not leaving a lot of empty space in their tubes. The full mask retails for $65.

So what to expect from this mask? According to the website…

Show Your Glow provides anti-aging effects while hydrating skin and helping to prevent premature aging. The colloidal gold is an anti-inflammatory which helps prevent the breakdown of collagen and elastin, preventing wrinkles from forming and smoothing the appearance of fine lines, while mica is used to give the skin a radiant glow. 

Personally I am not too thrilled by the mica as I’m not sure where the mica is sourced and there have been huge issues depending on where it comes from.

The mask is as gold as its name implies and the skin is covered in a yellow gold goo.  It is a little thicker than many face masks, which I think is due to the honey component.  I know there are vegans who avoid any honey as it is an animal product, but personally I adore honey. Growing up, at the first sign of a scratchy throat honey and a slice of lemon went into a tea cup and hot water was poured over it.  We also used it on cuts when there was no antibacterial ointment.  I am a huge fan of it and my skin always reacts well to it. There is also the comfort factor as it was present from my earliest childhood on. I think that’s why I tend to like most of Hey Honey’s skin care products.  I’m not such a big fan of some of their makeup, but I like their skin care.

This mask was no exception.  Even though it was a little thick on the face, it washed off easily with no scrubbing at the end of my twenty minute break and my skin felt amazingly soft.  I don’t know about long term anti-aging effects, but I have had some stress related breakouts lately and this did help calm my skin a bit.  I appreciate the assistance.

So thus cleansed and refreshed, I am ready to tackle the bind weed that is now attempting to take over the patch of ground where my pepper plants and tomatoes will spend the summer once removed from my small portable greenhouse (it’s the size of a book case and great for starting seeds in the early). Let the weed  whacking commence!

Beautytap, your destination for all things K-beauty

weight Loss Regime Survival Tip #44: The pantry

The pantry, staples, emergency and comfort

As I’ve mentioned before, my diet plan involves controlling my portion size and exercising. No foods are technically forbidden, although I do try to eliminate some that I know aren’t the best for me and there are no crazy things I have to eat. It is a simple calories in, calories out plan, with attention paid to exercising all of my body. Its a simple plan.

Well under normal circumstances it is a simple plan. But as we all know, normal is a sliding scale right now.

Instead of the gym I have been using workout videos gleaned from the internet, YouTube and the Facebook page of Planet Fitness have been crucial in helping me keep moving, especially as we’ve had frequent rainstorms blasting us while the weather makes its way, with some degree of difficultly from Winter into Spring.

This is not a year of easy transitions for anyone it seems.

The biggest change I have been dealing with has been with my food. Under normal circumstances, I have a system.On Friday afternoon, once rested from my Friday Face mask and before I start back to my afternoon’s work, I break out my meal plan for the following week. I double check the calories and portion sizing on the recipes I plan to make and then I write my grocery list. At this point many of my recipes are repeat players so the calories are already broken out. saturday, my baby doll looks over the list and adds things he wants that I didn’t put on the list.

Somehow candy always gets added. Go figure.

Then Sundays we go shopping.

As you are all no doubt aware, all that pretty much went out the window.

while we stocked up for a few weeks and have been self-isolating, we started to run out of things and so on Monday we made a list and went to the grocery store.(As a note, I live in Tennessee, while we have been asked to stay home for the good of all and we actually have been, the closing of non-essential businesses went into effect midnight last night. At least state wide, prior to that Mayors were just closing cities)

So Monday we went to the store with a list, but it wasn’t a meal plan list exactly. It was a list of essentials we would need for a month. We did not plan meals because we weren’t entirely certain what would be available. The last time we shopped, several shelves were very bare. They were again this time, but we got most of out essentials.

It was once we got home that meal planning began.

At this point I am still working towards remaining healthy and active and I would really like to continue to lose weight. I also recognize that the world is bonkers right now and the best I might be able to manage is to not gain weight. I will still post my weekly weight and work towards my weight loss goal, but I am going to try to be less obsessive about the scale.

However at the moment menu planning has taken on a more important role than just my calorie count. we are healthy and able to work from home. All of our relatives are in lock down somewhere else and currently outside of our ability to visit. So with enough food to last, there is no reason to leave the house for the next month.

I just have to portion the food out to last the month.

Luckily, I am a meal planning rock star.

Or so I tell myself.

And yes for the psychologically inclined out there, meal planning is also a way to exert control on an uncontrollable situation. So to keep things more normal in the house, I have sort of broken down our pantry, fridge and freezer full of groceries into weekly segments. While I settled this week’s meals, on Friday I will sit down with my baby and plan out the meals for next week. I will suggest chicken for Wednesday and ask what sort of sides or flavor profile he would like to see and we will discuss.

I’ve found that in general as long as he can have some input on the side dish or flavor, then he is pretty much okay with whatever I cook and will accept the portion I make. At this point I’ve figured out about how many calories we each need on a daily basis so it’s not as difficult as it seems.

I know this is more of a what’s going on than a tip, but here’s the tip. Treat your pantry, fridge and freezer as though they were the grocery store. Split what you have into weeks, but be general about it and allow for some wiggle room. There might be one day where one of the members of the household spends a little too much time in front of the news and you need to switch out your light veggie centric dish for a comforting grilled cheese. Its okay, just adjust and take it from another day as you shift things around.

Not watching the news just before dinner helps though. Especially if you are inclined towards stress eating.

The best way I’ve found to reduce stress eating in the past few weeks is to eat dinner, then brush my teeth and then with my mouth all minty fresh, watch the news to check for updates. Then if I feel the need to chew something after, I go for my stock pile of peppermint gum.

And yes, we stocked up on that when we loaded the pantry as well.

I know it’s not a typical dieter’s tip, but I hope it helps anyone out there reading.