Thursday, November 22, 2012

Holiday Eats

I decided that today being Thanksgiving this would be another good opportunity to share what I eat - post surgery Holiday meal! 

(excuse the paper plate - thankfully my family is not hung up on fancy dishes lol)

My meal consisted of:

3oz of turkey breast
1/2 crescent roll
1 extra small klondike potato
1 tsp of cranberry sauce
2 tablespoons green beans

Now, I will fully admit I made a mistake today - I didn't eat all my protein first. I enjoyed the veggies and other sides so much, and found myself not able to finish my turkey. (Not to mention I found it rather dry  but Karl assures me it was just me and that is was incredibly juicy)

I didn't weigh the turkey I had left - I am guessing under an ounce. 

And that was what was left when I was done eating. 

My meal totaled: 
Calories: 227
Carbs: 19
Fat: 6
Protein: 23

Thankfully, it was still a good amount of protein for a meal and meets the requirements. 

This is the first year that I can remember not leaving the table having eaten 2-3 plates of food and feeling disgusted and ready to pop. 

I ate till content and full but not ready to burst. 

It's been a wonderful Thanksgiving with lots to be thankful for. 

And as a little side note, I am down 81lbs now. 

Monday I go back downstate to meet with the dietitian for my 3 month post op check-up! 

And I'll leave you with a couple pics from today: 
She was being such a goober when daddy was trying to take our pictures! LOL! 

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Monday, November 12, 2012

Surgery Eats!

I've had a few people ask what I eat now, so I thought I'd post once a week or so what a typical day looks like for me.

So here is my menu for today, November 12th, 2012

Coffee with 1 equal and 1 tbsp of fat free half & half
1/2 cup of Kashi Go Lean Original cereal with just enough milk to wet it (probably a couple tbsp's)

Morning Snack: 
1 cup skim milk
1 scoop BodyFortress Super Whey Isolate

Jack Links Matador Beef Jerky - 2 3/4 oz (I was running errands and needed something I could eat on the go that would give me a lot of protein)

Afternoon Snack: 
FullBites Bold Cheddar snacks - 1 package

1/3 cup Spaghetti sauce with ground chicken added to it.
2 oz of cooked Ronzoni Healthy Harvest whole grain spaghetti
2 slices of cucumber
1 tbsp of chopped tomato
1 string cheese

Evening Snack:
1 cup skim milk

Calories: 1085
Fat: 23
Carbs: 119
Protein: 106
Fiber: 17

As of today I am down 77lbs, 38.5 inches overall. Remember, I do not drink with my meals - nothing half hour before or half hour after. I keep a 16oz container filled all the time with water or some sort of sugar free beverage. I try to get at least 4 of those in per day. Right now the focus is on protein above anything else - so the calories, carbs, fat, etc. aren't as much a concern as the protein is at this stage.

Here is another picture I shared on Facebook the other day:

I've lost another 5lbs since this picture was taken!

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Tuesday, October 30, 2012

Surgery Update 1

I haven't had a chance to update since my weight loss surgery back in August. I'd kinda like to make this a regular feature here on my blog - use it as a place to let people know how I am progressing! I was so nervous to come out and let people know what I was doing. I've seen so much negativity online regarding weight loss surgery and I refuse to have that kind of negativity in my life. But I am finding I am blessed with so many incredibly supportive people and I am grateful for that!

So, it's been two months since the big day and I am doing amazing! To date I've lost 69lbs - 40lbs just since the surgery. I am no longer on restriction as to what I can eat - that said, I do have to eat smart. I have to watch my fats/carbs and keep those below a certain number, and of course get my protein in. I am learning to enjoy my food and eat to live not living to eat. I read every label of any food that is going in my mouth. I log all foods in my food diary at MyFitnessPal. com. I exercise every day - I've been able to bike 5-6 miles per day now. I've lost 28 inches overall. I've gone down 4 pants sizes and 2 shirt sizes.

It hasn't all been fun and games and easy....not by any means. This is hard work...hard work!! Just like every other way to loose weight, it takes a lot of work and dedication.

One of the best things is that the kids are starting to notice that I've lost weight. It makes me feel so good when one of them notices that I can do something that I wasn't previously able to do.

I hope to be able to check in once a week or so and post some updates and share some pictures!

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Wednesday, October 17, 2012

The holidays are approaching...

It's getting to be that time of year again and honestly I dread it...the older I get, the more disheartened I get. There is so much negativity surrounding the holidays, especially Christmas. I know it's a matter of time before that first irate status on Facebook pops know the one where someone is madder than a red hen because the cashier at ________ (insert favorite store of choice) said "Happy Holidays" instead of "Merry Christmas". In one simple greeting, someones's whole life turns upside down. Or so that is how they portray it.

We live in a melting pot of cultures and religions  And while this might be America, land of the free, home of the brave, there is not one set religion. That my friends, is the beauty of this country. We are free! Free to worship and believe as we choose. We do not have to hide and worship in secrecy. And yet, so many people choose to overlook this at the holidays.

I don't care if you wish me a "Merry Christmas", "Happy Holidays", "Season's Greetings", "Happy Kwanzaa  or anything else. The very fact you took the time to wish me anything means more to me then what holiday you choose to acknowledge. I have friends from many races and religions. I know not all of them believe that  "Jesus is the reason for the season" and that is fine with me. So out of courtesy I just say "Happy Holidays". Does this somehow detract from my celebration? No way!

But yet there are people who will have you believe that someone we've taken Jesus out of Christmas. That somehow by that random clerk at Wal-Mart not wishing you a "Merry Christmas" that your holiday is ruined. Here's the thing, I don't for one second believe that Jesus is in heaven taking points off your "religion card" because someone wished you something other than "Merry Christmas".

At a time of year when the focus should be on love, why can't we just love everyone and accept that everyone celebrates differently? Why is it such an affront on our personal beliefs if Target doesn't wish you a "Merry Christmas"?

I don't celebrate the religious aspect of Christmas. That's just me. It's not that I don't know it - I grew up in Church - it's a conscious decision I've made along with my husband for our family. I acknowledge though that others do and that is a wonderful thing for them. I have no desire to take that away from anyone. Christmas for us is about family and friends, love everlasting  making new traditions and memories while celebrating the old ones, remembering those love ones we've lost, celebrating new beginnings and yet starting to see the year come to a close. It's all that and so much more. It's really hard for me to put into words. Dare I use the word, "magical"?

We make choices every single day. We choose to be happy. We choose to be angry. We choose to be sad. We choose to let the words of others affect us positively or negatively. Sometimes we give others too much control over how we feel. This holiday season I urge you to see the positives and hear the positives. Don't let something so simple as a phrase ruin your holidays and in turn cause you to spew more discontent and hate. Let your heart shine this holiday season. Let others see that no matter how anyone else chooses to celebrate you can be happy and enjoy your own celebrations.

No matter how you choose to celebrate the holidays, do so with love towards all of mankind, not just those who celebrate as you do. Open your heart and eyes this holiday. Find the peace and love in everything. Make it a holiday to remember!

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Monday, August 27, 2012

This is it!!

I've done it! I really did it! I made it the two weeks of liquids! There were a few days that were touch and go that I really wondered if I was mentally and physically strong enough, but I did it. I proved to myself that I have everything it takes to make this work. I am more than the next meal. I am more than what's on my plate. I am more than that cheeseburger. I am more than that Coke. Life doesn't need to revolve around food.

I am down 17.2lbs as of this morning -I am going to guess that by tomorrow when the surgery takes place I will have lost 18lbs. I've lost all together a total of 27 lbs. Well on my way to my goal!

Today I take care of some things around the house...and pack my bag...tomorrow I will get a chance to live my life all over again...only better...only healthier. Tomorrow is Karl's birthday and he gets a new wife! Lots of reasons to celebrate Karl's birthday from here on out!

I love my little family ... I couldn't have done this without them and their support and understanding.

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Saturday, August 25, 2012

The end is in sight!!

Today marks day 12.

12 days of a high protein liquid diet.

12 days of making meals for the rest of the family while I can't eat.

12 days of protein shakes/fat free yogurt/sugar free Popsicle/sugar free jello.

12 days of head games with myself.

12 days of stomach aches & hunger pangs.

12 days of headaches.

On the flip side, I've had...

12 days of consistent weight loss.

12 days of realizing with each passing day that I am stronger than all of the above.

12 days.

2 days to go.

I have just 2 more days to go.

Tuesday morning around 4:30am, we will head out for Bangor. I have to be at the hospital at 8:30am and surgery is scheduled for 10:30am.

2 more days till my life starts all over again.

Sure, maybe that sounds drastic but it's true. This surgery is the tool that will help me regain control of my life and be able to start living again.

I can't say that this has been easy. I just can't! That would be a lie. I've dealt with so many head games own head games. Every day there are little voices who try to derail you...who try to mess with you...who try to get you to fail before you've even started. But every day you have to stay strong and remember the bigger picture and keep the end in sight.

As of today, I've lost 15. 4 lbs.

2 days to go...2 more days to continue to prove to myself I am so much stronger than all of this!

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Wednesday, August 22, 2012

Under a week to go....

Less than a week to go till the big surgery day and I think it's finally hitting me that this is really happening. This week I am spending time getting things done that I know I won't want to or be able to after the surgery. It's amazing what you can get done when you know that you are about to undergo major surgery! LOL

 I think I am over the hardest part of the the liquid protein diet - this weekend was the worst but now it seems to be ok and I am in my groove. I guess this is just showing me how strong I really am. If you had asked me a year ago if I could do two weeks of just liquids, I don't know as though I could have honestly said yes. But I am doing it!! I really am!

I've lost 12.2lbs since last Tuesday, August 14th. I would love to see myself down 20lbs by the time I get to the hospital next Tuesday morning.

I just can't wait ...I am a bundle of nervous excitement!

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Friday, August 17, 2012

Day 4...

Today is day 4 and if I am being perfectly honest, I've had a harder time today then I did the other days. I think part of it is just the boredom factor - I get tired eating the same things day in and day out and this is no exception. On the plus side, I am down a total of 8lbs since starting this on Tuesday. Go me!

I've discovered that cream of chicken soup may have it's place in recipes and be handy to have on hand, it does not make a good supper. I had to choke it down tonight. Bleck!

10 days to go...I think I can...I think I can!

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Wednesday, August 15, 2012

Day 2 is done!!!

Well it's 9pm and I think it's safe to say I've made it through my first two days of my liquid diet. I won't lie - it hasn't been easy. I have had a headache both days. Making meals for the family has been a bit tough. But it hasn't been the worst thing ever either. At least I do have some variety...unlike when you have one of those tests or something to do and you can only have water...blah!

I think I can! I think I can! :-)

On the plus side, I was down 1.6lbs this morning. You can't knock that!!!

I've discovered that I really like Chobani Greek Yogurt - I tried the Passion-fruit yesterday and that was really yummy! Tonight I was able to have a cup of sugar free Swiss Miss Hot Chocolate topped with a tablespoon of fat free Cool Whip. It was so yummy and definitely helped with those cravings.

The kids are getting more excited - tonight Trevor drew a picture of me after I loose weight...complete with purple hair. I guess he's been listening to me talk about wanting to do something really wild and crazy with my hair! LOL!

Onward and upward... :-)

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Monday, August 13, 2012

Resurrection & The Last Supper....this isn't what you think it is!

Let me just start by saying, if you came here looking for a religious post based on my title, you are going to be sorely disappointed. This has absolutely nothing to do with religion at all. Sorry 'bout that!

So what is the resurrection? Me resurrecting this blog from the black hole it's been in for several...ahem...more than several months now. There are just not enough hours in the day sometimes. Combine that with the fact that I get hyper-focused on one thing and then everything else goes to the back burner.

So here I am...back to bore you with all sorts of

So by now you are wondering what is the deal with the "Last Supper"?

Well here goes....two weeks from tomorrow I will be having Gastric Bypass Surgery. I've mentioned it briefly here and there on this blog, but I haven't really come out and said too much. To be absolutely honest, I haven't wanted to deal with all the naysayers, the gossipers, the know-it-alls, etc...I haven't wanted to listen to people telling me that this was the easy way out, or that I could die, or any other nonsense.

This is something I have been considering for 3 years now. This is not something I went into lightly. In January of this year, I was accepted into the Bariatric Weight Loss Program at Eastern Maine Medical Center. I then began the process to qualify for the surgery which included monthly appointments with my own physician, loosing some weight on my own, seeing a nutritionist, physical therapist, psychologist, going to numerous support group meetings and nutrition meetings. Since May we've made about 5 or 6 trips down to Bangor to attend these appointments/meetings.

Last week I received word that I had been approved for my surgery. Last Thursday I got the call telling me it was scheduled for Tuesday, August 28th. For two weeks before the surgery I have to be on a high protein liquid diet - consisting of protein shakes, sugar free jello, light yogurts, light soups, etc. This is to not only have more weight loss but also shrink the liver and other organs a bit that tend to be enlarged in the obese person.

So tomorrow is my two week mark - hence, tonight being my "last supper". Realistically, it's not my last supper...I'll have food again...but just not for quite some time.

I've made a lot of little changes along the way in preparation of the surgery - giving up soda, cutting back on my coffee (caffeine), switching to skim milk in my coffee instead of half/half, drinking skim instead of 2% milk, taking 30 minutes to slowly chew my foods and eat my meals, not drinking with my meals, etc.

I am sure some are reading this wondering why I didn't get off my fat ass and just work hard? Oh how I wish it was that simple. Really. I do. I have struggled since junior high with my weight. It's been an ongoing up-down yo-yo of high's and low's. Over this past year with the knee surgery and hysterectomy, it's been a hellish battle and despite trying very hard, I haven't been very least not enough to put me in a healthy weight range and give me back my life. The fact of the matter, this surgery is a tool. A tool that I must use properly in order to loose weight, get healthy and lead the life I've been dying to have again. But as with any diet tool, if used improperly you will fail.

I do not expect to come out of this a size 4 with a toned body. I am simply looking to be active again - to be able to work my knee again and strengthen it - to be the mom running around with the kids instead of the mom huffing and puffing on the sidelines - to be able to sleep without the cpap machine - to learn to finally swim - to ride a bike again - to run - to go on hikes - to ride the fair rides - to go horseback riding - oh the list goes on and on. I am doing this for me. I am doing this for my family. I am doing this so that in 40 yrs from now I am still alive and able to watch my grandchildren run around.

I am in the homestretch now...doesn't seem possible but in just two short weeks I will be headed down to Bangor to have my surgery. It is Karl's birthday that day - I joke that from now on, we'll have two reasons to celebrate that day! :-) He's been such a support and trooper through this whole process and I thank him for that.

My kids have also been great dealing with babysitters while we go away for this day trips down to Bangor. I know it's a lot of change for them as well...esp. Trev. With his special needs, he struggles with changes and so this has been hard for him to accept - he's afraid I won't look the same. I've explained to him that I will still be me, just a bit smaller. Vicky is so excited - she asked me if we would be twins now! HA!

So that is what is going on in my life...along with a myriad of other things. I ask if you read this and are bothered by what I am doing, to please keep it to yourself. I am looking for support during this time, not negativity. I just ask that you respect my decision, while it might not be one you would make, understand it's the best one for *me*. Thanks!

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Wednesday, April 18, 2012

30 Days of Me Challenge - Day 2

Day 02- The meaning behind your Blog name:

faint of heart
Fig. people who are squeamish; someone who is sickened or disturbed by unpleasantness or challenge

Being a mother is one of the ...wait, let me take that back, being a mother is *the* hardest thing I have ever done and continue to do. Every day is a challenge! You can't be squeamish physically or even mentally when you have kids - poopy blow out diapers, drooling, snots, scrapes and bruises and everything else in between! 

So there you have it!  

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Tuesday, April 17, 2012

Dropped the ball big time! So I am issuing myself a challenge!

Goodness gracious - I haven't blogged in forever! Once again, this thing called life has gotten in the way...toss in some laziness and a bit of lacking inspiration and well you've got a blog that hasn't been updated in months! 

I decided to get myself back into daily blogging I'd go on Google and search for some daily prompts - something to help spur the creative juices! And I found several - yay me!!! 

So tonight I will start - smack dab in the middle of the month I am going to do a 30 day challenge! LOL! 

Without further ado:

30 Days of Me Challenge:

Day 01- A recent picture of you and 15 interesting facts about yourself
This was taken last week. April 2012.

1. I just turned 36 years old in March. When I was little, the idea of being in my 30's seemed like a lifetime away. And now that I am here, it seems like life is just flying by. 

2. I am the youngest of 8 children. I was born 11 years after my parents thought they were done having children. 

3. I have a major fear of water. I don't even like water hitting my face while in the shower. I try to avoid it at all costs - so I make sure to wash my face with a wash clothe once I am out of the shower. 

4. I grew up in Brooklyn, NY. Brooklyn will always be home in my heart, but now that I've lived in Maine for 20 years, this is starting to feel like a second home to me. 

5. I married the second guy I ever dated. I was told it would never last. And yes, we've had ups and downs, but what couple hasn't? We will celebrate our 13th anniversary next week, though we've been together a total of 18 yrs now. 

6. I always wanted four children. Last June (2011) I made the ultimate decision to have a complete hysterectomy (everything was removed). In my mind I knew we were done with two kids but in my heart, it still kind of stings. 

7. I cry extremely easy. Like EXTREMELY easy. 

8. I am a special needs parent. Those are words I never thought I would ever utter. And despite having been one for 4 yrs now, it still seems surreal! 

9. I have so many ideas floating around in my head, so many things that I want to do, and yet I can't seem to get anything accomplished. 

10. I want to pursue a career in photography but am afraid to take the leap. 

11. I want to travel to Ireland some day and see where my ancestors came from.

12. I am learning new things about me everyday - things that lead me to believe that perhaps Trev's issues come directly from me. I just haven't decided if I want to pursue an actual diagnosis. 

13. I am currently on a waiting list to have weight loss surgery. 

14. I have sleep apnea and sleep every night using my cpap machine. 

15. I went to a private school for the first 13 yrs of my educational career. 

Stay tuned for tomorrow's prompt: The meaning behind your Blog name

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Wednesday, January 18, 2012

Tuesday, January 17, 2012

Engagement Photo Shoot

Ever since having Trevor, the photography bug has really taken hold of me. At first I content just photographing the kids but lately, I really want to venture out more. I suppose though, I am what has been dubbed, a "momtographer". Apparently, us moms with cameras are really starting to irritate the professionals who feel we are taking away from their business. Here is the thing - we all have to start somewhere. Even the pros were once just a person with a camera. But I guess they have forgotten that. It's a very intimidating business because photography is very subjective. I've seen some of the so-called best of the business and I've not been impressed at all, and I've seen amateurs who knock my socks off.

I find myself torn between wanting to do it like the pros so to speak, and wanting to just follow my own heart and photograph the way *I*want and say the hell with all the "rules".

Back in October I had the privilege to photograph an engagement session for a friend of the family - we had a lot of fun. One of the best parts is that the bride-to-be was open to whatever I had in mind for posing and for processing the photos when I was done. I am really thrilled with how they came out!

Here are some peaks of the session:

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Monday, January 16, 2012

Project 365: Day 16

Project 365: Day 16
Back in December I won a new Nescafe Dolce Gusto coffee machine from Nescafe! It arrived today!! Woot! 

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Sunday, January 15, 2012

Project 365

Project 365: Day 14
Look at those blue eyes! 
 Project 365: Day 15
She was so proud of herself for getting ready for bed! She looks like a little hobo! LOL! 

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Friday, January 13, 2012

Project 365

Project 365: Days 11, 12, and 13
I have had all my photos ready and just forgot to post them, so here we go!
So we've been trying new wines lately and I decided to take a picture of this Port I had purchased, when all of a sudden Karl jumped into the picture just as I was snapping! LOL!
So yesterday I was surprised by UPS with a package. I wasn't expecting anything, so I had no idea what it was. Imagine my surprise when I opened it up to find out I had won this cute little charm last month from a contest on Facebook! 
And for today - we let the kids stay up tonight, so here is Vicky in my bed waiting for me to join her so we can watch some Nickelodeon!! 

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Tuesday, January 10, 2012

Project 365: Day 10

Project 365: Day 10
I helped mom pick out this Mrs.Fields cookie "oven" for Vicky for Christmas. I didn't pay attention closely otherwise I would have seen this ins't an oven indeed - it's just a storage unit. You actually make the cookies in the microwave. And for the record, said cookies taste like crap! LOL! 

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Sunday, January 8, 2012

Project 365: Day

Project 365: Day 8
Someone got a hair cut today - just enough to trim off the dead ends. She's decided she wants to grow it out now...which makes daddy very happy! 

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Saturday, January 7, 2012