Sunday slim-down #1

Tomorrow we venture into our first Screen-free Sunday. We’re going to try to be off the computers all day to spend more time with each other. We tend to spend a lot of time on our computers.

In order to prepare for tomorrow, I’m posting tonight. There’s lots of stuff to talk about!

I’ve pulled together some more things that I’m getting rid of. It will be easy at the beginning, and I’m sure it will get harder as we go, once I’ve given away all the things that I can easily live without.

Today I’m getting rid of some clothes that I’ve been hanging on to, because they were nice. There’s no reason for me to hold on to them – they don’t fit me any more, and having them around is almost like giving myself unspoken permission to re-gain lost weight. But they were decent clothes, even if plain; worn only a few times, and I didn’t want them to go “to waste”. So now they can be yours, just send me a message at mamaisa4letterword(at)gmail(dot)com. I’ll be donating them if no one claims them. My closet’s slim-down can be your closet’s gain! (If they need to be mailed, we can work out the postage – I’m not making millions off this blog…yet.)

DSC_0869 A DKNY sweater, perfect for the holidays with some coppery metallic thread and little rosettes on the chest. 3/4 sleeve, size large, loose-fitting but shaped. Cute!

DSC_0855 Anne Klein pleated pin-striped skirt, size 14. Needs an ironing, but it’s got great flounce and was flattering on my curves.

DSC_0856Maroon tank, XL. This photographed pinker than it is. This one is Merona, which I think is the Target brand, but it’s in good shape and was a great shell under a sweater or jacket.

DSC_0857It has a teardrop neck detail. It is shaped well to show off a waist, and is fairly long.

And since I’m getting rid of some clothes that I’ve out (under?) grown, I think I need to re-commit to my weight loss goals. It’s been a long road for me. I had been working on losing weight for a few years, and had lost 100 pounds. Yeah, 100. Crazy, right? I lost an Olsen twin. It took a really long time for me, I have to lose very slowly. And since I was so self-conscious at my top weight, I don’t even have any pictures of myself. In fact, I don’t even really know what my top weight was, I had stopped weighing myself. So my 100 pound loss was measured from my last known weight.

Megan and Tony Yeah, that’s me and Anthony Hopkins, or Tony as he had be call him. I drove him around in 2007 when I worked for SIFF. It’s also the fattest picture I have of myself. I deleted pretty much all the pictures I had when I was heavier. It took a photo-op with Tony to get me to keep a shot of myself. This was already 50 pounds down. And dearest friends, if you have a fatter picture of me, I don’t want it. Please don’t send it. I don’t need to see it.

Then, this was me in the summer of 2009, in Mexico. I had lost 100 pounds (50 from the picture above) and it was the first time, probably in my life, that I let anyone photograph me in a bathing suit. And even though I had more work to do, I’m sharing it. Deep breath. Here it is.

IMG_3113 (2) Keep breathing. It’s going to be OK. Breathe. I feel very exposed right now, even though I’m sitting here in a hoody and fleece pants. Somehow posting that “better” picture was harder than posting the previous one. Breathe.

When I hit that major milestone I had been working really hard – eating well, going to meetings and walking most days with my amazing friend Carlie.

After this photo was taken, I gained 8 pounds back. We had moved to a place way out in the ‘burbs, a mile and a half from the closest store. I no longer biked to work, no longer shopped on foot, no longer walked the lake on a daily basis. The pounds just crept on, and before I knew it, there they were. Then I got pregnant, but thankfully lost all the pregnancy weight without having to try too hard.

So now I’m 92 pounds down, with some more to go. I would love to lose 30 pounds – well, make that 38, now – to get to my goal weight. It’s not a super-low weight, it’s reasonable for me I think. I have to do it really slowly. I’ve never been able to crash diet, or to live with a lot of restriction. I’m not a super-intense exerciser, and I no longer live in a place where I can walk to everything. But I am going to keep working at it, and I figured that I may as well commit to it now. If I wait until January to re-commit, it will just be giving myself permission to not keep track of myself over the holidays. So I’m publicly re-committing, getting back on the wagon, and am going to get back on track with better decisions.

There were a few things that really made a difference for me in my weight-loss adventure. One was vegetable soup. I ate more vegetable soup than you can imagine. And the recipe is simple.

Sauté a ton of veggies in a little bit of olive oil, add some low-sodium chicken (or veggie) stock, add a can of rinsed garbanzo beans, a parmesan rind, some pepper & herbs de Provence, and a healthy splash of balsamic vinegar. Let it simmer until the parmesan rind gives off its flavor, and remove it. Add more balsamic, if you like that sort of thing. Eat for days on end.

Another was faux pumpkin pie breakfast, also a super-simple recipe.

Crack open a can of pumpkin puree (not pie mix, just puree) and a container of fat-free Greek yogurt. Mix about a third of a cup of each in a small bowl. Add some cinnamon, nutmeg, all-spice, whatever you like. Eat it with a couple of graham crackers. Yum.

And cottage cheese with sliced cherry tomatoes and pepper was a frequent breakfast, as was a pile of roasted veggies with a scrambled egg white. Or a giant Asian pear with cinnamon sprinkled on it, or for a super-indulgent treat, some peanut butter.

For me the most important thing was veggies. Lots and lots of veggies. I need to eat a lot, but it doesn’t need to be high-calorie things. It’s been hard to make things with tons of veggies since I’ve had Pie. It involves more frequent trips to the store for fresh produce, cleaning and peeling and chopping. But I have to find a way. I can buy frozen veggies, I can prep ahead. I can make a giant pot of soup like I used to, and keep some in the freezer all week. So here we go again.


And now, on to some made gifts!  I’m making crayons for my nephew, who informed me that he likes motorcycles (but only if there’s a bad guy riding them) and space ships.


DSC_0837 These need a little cleaning up on the edges, but they were easy and cheap to make. I bought some chocolate molds, melted down some crayons and poured the wax into the molds. Let them cool and pop them out, and you’ve got an even cooler crayon. I used a crayons from a big bag of brokens I’d received from a local homeschooler on Freecycle, separating by color family before melting. 28oz cans sitting in a pot of simmering water work best for melting & pouring, and you’ll need one can for each color. Then you can just let any leftover wax cool in the can, and it will melt down again next time.

I also made numbers and animals.



Wow, these photos are ugly. These were taken without my Lightscoop, in a very dark kitchen at night. The flash was reflecting too much so I took the photos without flash, which made them a little blurry. Oh well. I’m happily on my way to a debt-free holiday.

And don’t forget, there’s a bonus for both of us if you open an ING account with my referral – email me at mamaisa4letterword(at)gmail(dot)com and I’ll send the referral so we can both cash in. I have to send the referral by the end of the day today, but you have until 12/31/10 to open the account. There’s also a $25 bonus for opening a kid’s account, which I did yesterday. You don’t need a referral for the kids account, but you should get your own account (with my referral, of course) before setting up the kid’s account. The interest rates are low right now, but if you put your money here, at least it’s not in your checking account. ING isn’t paying me any more than the interest on my money for posting this, it’s just a service I use and enjoy. Generally ING has had the highest interest rates around, which they are able to offer in larger part because it’s just you, your computer, and your money.

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