Saturday, August 8, 2009


We just got back from Kid's before school potluck.

It was pretty much a social coup for me.

What an unexpected turn of events. I'm feeling 100 times less anxious about my class parent responsibilities.

First off there was some fresh blood.

Secondly, three of the stodgiest richie rich old boys' families are out.

They were replaced with 2 families that are clearly falling into the Furious "we're barely making it but we're committed to doing right by our kids" camp.

In a class of 12 kids that really does change the entire dynamic.

Also Ditz, the other class parent, was not in attendance (they are the last standing member's of the old boys' club) and so I could just be myself without having to work around her social wet blanket.

Without her around I was able to sell the new parents on my email plan to promote constant and thorough communication from the informed to the uninformed. They were ALL for it.

So my confidence is boosted. My goals and action plan have been validated.

Maybe this year, and this commitment, won't be so terrible after all.

P.S. All you past class parents out there will be happy to hear that I set my boundaries right from the outset. While I did orchestrate the potluck in terms of arranging who brings what, etc. I did not arrive early and set up... this was the teachers' hosted potluck. I arrived 5 minutes late. I brought the most substantial entree (fried chicken fyi... and it was fantastic and all eaten up) but I did not set up the food. I also made sure that we picked up our dish and cleared out a bit early. As soon as several families had gone we left. I don't want to set a precedent that I'm going to "do it all". I'm the class parent not the only adult in the room with arms. I'm going to do what needs to be done to be helpful... but not put myself (or my family) out and not take on more than I can handle without enjoying it. And for the first time in my life I am actually okay with that. I was completely at ease driving out of that driveway 15 minutes early. I know that what I did was enough and that I really don't need to overextend myself anymore. Lord knows it doesn't ever get you any more acknowledgment.

Housing Search 2010: 110 years old plus acreage preferred... now accepting applications

"I'm just sayin'... if we move out... I'll be home less." Mr F says.

"I'm just sayin' if we don't... I'll be home less." Mrs F retorts.

We're either living crazy Laura Ingalls style or I'm hitting the road in an RV.

Friday, August 7, 2009

The Preface

Here is a little detail that might help to start to frame my current mindset.

That baby.

The one I was supposed to watch 40 hours a week.

The measly pay that I wanted to scoff at but NEEDED in order to pay Kid's tuition.

Yeah that one.

They don't need me. The father couldn't get a job in his field (big surprise) and is working nights at Sam's Club.

And that changes everything.

I'm not trying to be coy these days ... with my declaration of life altering plans and my promise to share them... which I then fail to follow through on.

I am pretty much trying to keep my head above water. Formulate a plan for bailing us out (again) and getting us to a place, in a place, where this will stop happening.

There is a lot about my life that is PERFECT. Exactly what I had hoped for, dreamed of. I failed to dream with enough color to envision the rest of it though. The financial stress and disappointments. The wasted energy and time that goes into things that don't actually matter or improve our life. The LOCATION.

People, some of it is sucking my soul out.

So when I say I have a plan... I do. But these recent events, and the return from the great North and my adjustment back to Asheville, are conspiring to send me into a bit of a funk. And I'm trying not to just lie down and give in.

The plan will come. But for now I kind of need to revel in it a moment and not let the magnitude of our saving overwhelm me.

Plans and dreams are fun until you realize how quickly you might need them.

Then they're scary as hell.

What The Heck Is Going On?!

Why can't I just finish a post... right?

Here is the thing...

What I'm thinking about right now is serious... for me.

As you know I blog about all sorts of shit on here.

I'm totally honest and self-revealing... most of the times that's all hunky dory. I'm like that in real life too. But there are times when being that open in such a public format (where people are free to share with me their opinions on me), well, at times that makes me more vulnerable than I'm up for.

Like now.

This is me being vulnerable and wearing it on my sleeve so that if when I do decide to show you my cards you'll just respectfully keep you mouth shut if you don't like what you see.

Sometimes what you have to say (and when I say "you", of course, I mean me)... especially when it is a dream is so personal and so revealing that it needs to just be left at that. You can't expect to understand someone else's choice of dream just as you can't understand their fears. They just are there at a soul level inside you. And they need to be respected for what they are.

But I am working on a plan. Because I've seen the immense, immeasurable, difference it has been for our family to have Mr F not just enjoying, but getting enrichment and fulfillment from his job. To have that satisfaction trickle down into his entire being and then pass around our house like a contagion. And, by God, I deserve to have that level of enjoyment and enrichment in my life as well. Just think... we might combust from all that happiness.

more to come

Thursday, August 6, 2009

A Plan Is Hatched

Okay I've really been thinking about things these days.

Really seriously thinking.

And I've been trying to identify which things I need more of and which things I could do without.

Mr F and I were up until 2 AM strategizing.

And we have a plan.

Unless the forces of nature come together sooner (which God willing they will) ... in one year... things will be changing.

On MANY fronts.

And, no, Mr F won't be wearing a black felt hat. Neither will I for that matter.

[wait... I've been commissioned to build a marble run... and I need more marble runs... I'll be back]

Wednesday, August 5, 2009

Hey I Know I'm A Little Weight Loss Heavy These Days...

But that's where I'm at.

Deal with it.

I've also got some serious deep thoughts roaming around the 'ol nog.

Including but not limited to...

What is the one thing you are not doing (for whatever reason) that you believe would make you happiest?

Note I did not say happier. I mean what is that one (two, three, four) dream you dream for yourself that resonates so deeply you believe (hope) that it is actually going to make you happiest?

And why aren't you taking the steps you need to to make that change?

I'm going to. I'm formulating my plan.

And, people, the fact that I am going to take action (even if delayed) is titillating.

I feel rejuvenated.

I think that sometimes you have to give your dreams a chance to get out of your head. To really analyze what it is that keeps bringing you back to the same fantasy. And how you can make it part of your reality.

Tuesday, August 4, 2009

Keeping Your Eye On The Prize

This summer my aunt was talking about her weight loss efforts and bad mouthing some seriously respectable pound dropage.
"But that's about 2 pounds a week." I said.
"That's really good." I reminded her.

The thing with weight loss is that it just isn't always consistent. You'll have crazy good weeks where you'll drop 4 pounds (which she did) followed by a week when you might lose a pound. You just averaged 2.5 pounds a week but you're focusing on the fact that you lost 4 pounds right out of the gate and now believe that is your goal... because you think you're capable of it. And anything less is disappointing.

One thing I do know is that it's important not to get disappointed. You've got to stay positive or you'll start to act out and sabotage your efforts.


I suggested she go home and get out a calendar. At the top of the month she could record her current weight and at the bottom she should write down her monthly goal weight. And it should include a low range goal and a high range goal. I support a 4 - 8 pound range. If you have a great month than YAY!.... but I know I'm not going to lose weight, consistently, faster than that.

So let's just say at the top she's going to write 150... than at the bottom she'd write down 142-146.

Maybe she'll surpass that goal. BUT instead of looking at 146 on the scale and thinking "That's it?!! I lost that much in a week last month!" She'll have a reminder that that was within her month's healthy weight loss goals. Instead of seeing it as a failure she can see it as a success.

Because I don't have a lot to lose and I need more positive reinforcement I've adapted this same idea on a weekly level. I've got 1 & 1.5 weight loss goals written on each Wednesday for the next two months. Instead of feeling like this is slow going I now feel like it is totally doable and that I'm on target. And I can see when I should reach my goal (end o' September) and can practically taste it.

Monday, August 3, 2009

Here We Go (Again)

I've given myself a little downtime post vacation to ease into this new phase of weight loss... which I really recommend. I didn't get crazy on myself with plans and commitments. I took it easy and added a little exercise. I started food journaling again... but not with rigid calorie amounts or food rules. And now I'm ready to reel it in a little more and get going. It's been well over a year since I lost track of what I was doing in the weight management department and it's time to get it back on track. I guess I should be thrilled that my complete lack of commitment and attention has only amounted to 8 pounds... although... the ugly truth that I've gained a good 11 pounds of fat due to some muscle loss kind of deflates my "it could be worse" balloon.

BUT I don't want to lose sight of the fact that I have figured out how to get and maintain the body I want.

I have.

No, really I have.

I just stopped doing it.

And now the time has come for me to say... "Well wasn't that fun? Did you enjoy your 15 months off? Was it worth it?"

And the answer to all of those questions is the same: No.


The small time commitment to food journaling is nothing compared to the amount of time I have replaced it with bemoaning my weight.

The extra 30 or 60 minutes in the evening gained by not working out... meant I was short tempered and usually felt put upon by family demands that no one really needed me around to meet. Did I feel more rested? No. Get quiet time to finish a project or do some *real* reading? Never. Just more of the same with absolutely no break in a long day of doing the same. Even when you love your life you need alone time. Please, for the love of God, give yourself some alone time. (Especially if it involves: The Bachelorette, Millionaire Matchmaker, Next Food Network Star, Project Runway & Army Wives... all of which lose their soul nourishing powers when watched with a two year old.)

Did I enjoy my 15 months off?

No I really didn't. In fact I spent most of it worry about how I was going to lose the X number of pounds I had already gained.

But this has been a valuable lesson.

One I'll undoubtably repeat in this lifetime because I'm human.

Because sometimes...

I break my butt.

And I get depressed.

And I like to bake.

Because I forget that it feels better to feel good... than to feel free.

Because the freedom is an illusion.

It's a sabotage that makes you feel more trapped than a 60 minute workout.

Or a scale.

Or a food diary.

And so I'm back. I'm bringing it.

I want this and I know that I can have it.

I also have a new perspective.

This isn't something I have to do.

I want to do it.

I, actually, enjoy it.

I'm better for it. Not because I should do it... but because I am literally better for it.

In my core.

More than I ever realize in the moment.

But now I know... I get it.

Get ready for greatness.

Sunday, August 2, 2009

Don't Worry About Mr F... I Made It Up To Him

Last night in bed I listened to him give an hour long lecture on the history of steroid use in the Major Leagues.
Sure I asked, but for the life of me I can't remember why.

I did sleep well though.

Then this morning, in response to his comment on yesterday's post, he explained to me, in detail, how they used to put together graphic design mechanicals and shoot them with cameras the size of two rooms. It was a half an hour long discussion... and I still don't understand.

Can I have my coffee now?
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