Friday, January 29, 2010

Friday update: Clothes are fitting better, or... worse. But looser!

I am finally on the mend!  A couple days ago I had a homemade hamburger and some apple pie à la mode.  Then yesterday I had it again (leftovers).  That's two days in a row with no, uh, issues.  Yay!  That bit of celebratory eating made me gain a little bit of weight from my low of 175-ish (that was earlier in the week) but whatever.  I still lost nearly a pound since last Friday.

Steve and I have both noticed that our clothes are looser.  But the best news for me is that I have lost 1.75" on my waist this week!  (Yeah, I know I said I woudn't count quarter inches... screw that!)  And the best news for Steve is that he has lost 3 lbs. this week!  We can see the weight loss in each other, too.

You know what''s really weird?  I'm enjoying exercise.  I am someone who has not been in shape since I was 9 or 10 years old.  I was super skinny til I was 22, but I was a skinny fat person.  But every day now I look forward to getting at least a little bit of a workout.  Some days (because of having a baby who needs me 24/7) I only get 15 minutes in, but other days I get nearly an hour.

Anyway, on to the weekly statistics. . .

STATS for January 29, 2010:
Bevin weighs 176.8 lbs. (down 0.9 lbs. from last week.)
Steve weighs 191.4 lbs. (down 3 lbs. from last week!!!)

My measurements:
Neck: 14" (down 0.5" from last week)
Bust: 42.25" (down 0.75" from last week)
Waist: 39.25" (down (1.75" from last week!)
Hips: 42.25" (no change)

Tuesday, January 26, 2010

Title, title. Can't think of a title.

Let me start off by introducing yet another new blog. It's my very own Link Dump! I come across so many awesome things on the 'net and I'm worried that all my Facebook and Twitter friends are sick to death of my incessant posting, so this will be another outlet for me.

In other news, I'm still sick! I'm certainly doing a lot better, but I still can't eat very much. I calculated that today I took in a mere 1090 calories. I also worked out for 1/2 an hour today. Yikes! No wonder I'm losing weight so quickly. Oh well, at least I'm able to eat a bit of protein now.

By the way, I found two great websites about weight loss today. The author isn't out to make money, and it's good, basic information. The first is The Lose Weight Diet, and the second is a Calorie Counter. No crazy cabbage diets, no trying to sell weird herbal supplements.

There's a lot I want to write about, but it's too private, even for me. So I'll just leave it here. A nice, impersonal update. Enjoy.

By the way, here's a great picture of Bailey. When she was in Sechelt last week she got to ride a horse!

Friday, January 22, 2010

Still sick (!) and still losing weight

How can I still be sick?  Well, I saw the doctor this week and he told me that food poisoning can linger like this, so that is likely what it is.

As long as I don't eat I am fine.  I can handle toast and applesauce, the occasional banana, and a tiny bit of chicken now and then, but I can't eat very much at a time.  The other day I was out and decided to eat 2 tea biscuits and a cookie.  I won't go into the gory details, but let's just say that the drive home was almost not very pretty... (but I made it home in time thank goodness.  Oh my god, can you imagine?)

ANYWAY... I'm thrilled to report that I'm overweight!  Ha ha, of course by that I mean that my BMI has dropped below the threshold for obesity.

Steve and I have quit taking pictures every day and will now be taking them once a week on Friday, the day I post these updates.  A daily photo was a bit too ambitious for people with an infant, I think.  On the other hand, I have weighed myself on the Wii Fit almost every day this month.  I only missed one day when I was sick.  Today I managed to exercise a bit, too.

STATS for January 22, 2010:
Bevin weighs  177.7 lbs. (down 3 lbs. since last week!)
Steve weighs  194.4 lbs. (down 3 lbs. since last week!)

My measurements:
Neck 14.5" (no change)
Bust  43" (down .5")
Waist 41" (down .5")
Hips 42.25" (no change)

Tuesday, January 19, 2010

Why I like the Duggars

I was watching an old episode of the Duggar's TV show today (from back when they "only" had 17 kids).  They were visiting the Creation Museum, and looking at exhibits that showed Adam and Eve living at the same time as the dinosaurs.  Really, it makes my head hurt that people actually believe this crap and prevent their kids from learning about evolution.

The Duggars also have very strict rules covering everything from what their children can wear to exactly how they should behave.  And the gender roles in that family are an affront to my bad feminist self.   So why do I--an atheist, feminist, unschooling mama who believes in total freedom--like the Duggars?

They are gentle.  My goodness, the patience of that woman (Michelle)!  She is so kind and loving with her children.  By contrast I am truly a monster mom!  Even if they are spankers (which, given their other beliefs, they probably are) they are at least also gentle and kind most of the rest of the time.

They stick to their principles.  They might come at it from more of a rule-based background than an unschooler would, but they are consistent at living what their family values, and I admire that, and can learn from it.  I am quick to say that my family values living debt-free, but we are not entirely consistent in living up to that one.

They enjoy each other's company.  I love seeing close-knit families.  My family was never as close as I would have liked (though we were much closer than many other families I knew).  Seeing the Duggars interact with each other is so heart-warming for me.  I really feel sad when I hear parents say things like, "oh, thank god school starts tomorrow, I don't think I could take another minute of them being home all the time." And then they look at me like they want me to commiserate.  Well, no!  I enjoy spending time with my children, and it's nice to see that the Duggars enjoy spending time with their children, too.  All 19 of them.  Wow.

Anyway, I'm not being as articulate as I would like to be today.  It's day 9 of not being able to eat much beyond the BRAT diet, and I also haven't been sleeping well.  However, I want to keep my writing muscles working, so there you are.

In closing, a totally irrelevant picture.  I realized that the only pictures of me on this blog so far are totally crappy, and I wanted to post this one from May 2008, when I was at my thinnest in years (though still overweight by about 25 lbs.).  At the time I was growing my hair out for my wedding, too, so that explains that.

Friday, January 15, 2010

Sick or stressed?

Okay, every week I struggle with formatting the postition of these $%#ing pictures so this week here they are, right off the bat!  Also, I'm wearing the same shirt as last Friday, lol!  Now for the text...

We've slacked off on taking a picture every day since we got sick.  However, there are already enough pictures of me in pajamas this year... I don't need to add any pictures of a sick me in PJs to the mix!

Since January 1st I have lost 9 lbs! 7 lbs of this is because I have been sick since Sunday.

...But I wonder. Am I really sick, or have I just lost my appetite due to stress? Our finances are hurting really badly right now. Steve lost an entire day per week off his paycheque (we expected this after xmas, but didn't think it would be quite this soon). Considering we were barely squeaking by before we are very worried.

Steve thinks I should go back to work early, and he is also trying to get a second job to bring his total weekly hours up to 40. I was heartbroken at the possibility of going back to work in April, and was trying to think of any way to avoid that. The possibility of leaving my 7 month-old infant and returning to work now has me paralyzed with grief. And what about my Bailey-girl? How would I ever find a daycare provider for the two of them who would understand our family's principles?  Please send positive thoughts our way.  I really want to avoid having to go to work for pay.  :(  I already have the most important job in the world.

So anyway, I'm having trouble eating. And that's the only symptom I have. It doesn't seem like food poisoning or a stomach bug to me.

STATS for January 15, 2010:
Bevin weighs 180.6 lbs. (down 6 lbs since last week!)
Steve weighs 197 lbs.  (down 5 lbs since last week!)

And my measurements:

Neck: 14.5"   no change
Bust: 43.5"    down 1"
Waist: 41.5"  down almost 1"
Hips: 42.5"    down almost 1"

Monday, January 11, 2010

Sick... but losing weight!

Well, Steve and I have been sick since Sunday morning.  Is it wrong to be almost glad for this mild food poisoning or stomach bug?

We've watched close to fifteen episodes of Stargate Atlantis, done lots of snuggling, and lost a couple pounds each.  (Me: 2 lbs., Steve 3.5 lbs.)

Anyway, I usually get extremely hungry after being sick so I might gain the weight back... but for now it feels kind of neat to be losing weight without any effort!

Friday, January 8, 2010

January 8, 2010

All right, it has been one week since Steve and I started the weight loss part of our 2010 journey.  Despite having massive amounts of gingerbread castle at our disposal I think we did pretty good!

The castle has been picked over now, and we have carrots and celery in the fridge, all cut up and ready for crunching!

Here are pictures of us today.

STATS for January 8, 2010:
Bevin weighs 186.5 lbs. (down 2.5 lbs since last week!)
Steve weighs 202 lbs. (down 1 lb since last week!)

My measurements are slightly higher than last time, but the difference is so small that I'm going to say there was no change. A quarter inch here and there makes no difference. I'll be excited or worried when the difference is 1/2 to 1 inch or more. Here they are anyway:

January 8, 2010


Bust 44.5"
Waist 42.25"
Hips 43.25"
Neck 14.75"

By the way, I've changed the coent process to make it easier.  You'll probably still have to type in a captcha but you no longer have to have a Google ID or anything like that.  So don't be shy!  I love comments.

Thursday, January 7, 2010

What's on my bulletin board?

I was struggling for ideas regarding what to write, and looking around my computer desk.  I want to write, and it has been a couple of years since I wrote so prolificly.  (Yes, four blog posts in six days does too count as prolific!)  I have two bulletin boards built into my desk, and I realized that I could write about the items on each one.  Hopefully this comes across the way I wanted, and is not terribly boring.

Left-hand side

Okay, the first thing (starting on the far left and working clockwise) is a mission statement of sorts.  It reads "I wanna live free and bring kids with me learning from them as I empower them to never forget their innate wisdom of laughter, stickiness, daredevil impulses, superpowers and neverending sessions of imagination."

Next to that is a card with the zones of the sea (epipelagic, mesopelagic, bathypelagic, abyssopelagic, and hadapelagic) on it.  Thank you Finding Nemo!

On the blue card is the NATO phonetic alphabet... because I like that sort of thing. 

Down from that is the Kamloops logo re-done as the Secwepmculecw logo. 

Hanging off the bottom is an envelope where I keep coupons and Canadian Tire money. 

Next is the multiplication table from 1 to 12. 

Smack in the middle is where I keep all the receipts for purchases I make with the money we get for homeschooling through the Self Design program.

Right-hand side

And here's the right side.  The pink thing is a broken hair decorating thingy that Bailey used to wear. 

Underneath it is a beaded dragonfly keychain that someone (Bailey or my sister Jennifer) made for me. 

The orange rectangle is just a piece of corrugated cardstock that I loved (it was probably used as inspiration when I was choosing my wedding colours).

The circle is a post-it that contains a quote from Bob Ross: "We don't make mistakes, we just have happy accidents." Incidentally, my mother-in-law hates Bob Ross!  She says he's unoriginal and has no talent.  I smiled and nodded.

Little white rectangle at 5 o'clock from the orange circle reads "F8=safe mode" because I could never remember that on my own.

Above that is a keychain with my name on it that I made when I joined my other sister at a rather church-y playgroup she used to go to.

A receipt I'm too lazy to open is beside that, and then a list of our monthly bill payments (kind of out-of-date).  At the bottom of the list I wrote: "Paid in FULL!  Money flows easily and effortlessly into our lives  :)"  Come on Law of Attraction!  Do your thing!

Above that, barely visible is a V pin that I got when I met Eve Ensler at a Vagina Monologues workshop in Los Angeles.

Under the list of bills is a card with Sims cheats, and under that is a guide to the coloured pens that I use in our family's dayplanner. 

Above that is a green card that a counsellor gave me once listing my personal Bill of Rights.  Among the rights:  "13. You have the right to grow and change (and that includes changing your mind)." And "16. You have the right NOT to be responsible for other adult's problems." 

The green circle is a post-it with Sims cheats. 

Bailey made the pink and orange bracelet in honour of my wedding (those were our colours). 

She also made the beautiful dragonfly hanging. 

On the far left is a white business card with details about Steve's dream wedding band: $399.  Someday. 

And the last thing is the coolest poem that Bailey wrote for and about me in grade one or two:

B est mom
E ven a good cooker
V ery nice
nfo giver
N o badness

Hmm.  Maybe this was boring.  but I wrote it and I am reluctant to delete it so I'm going to hit the "Publish Post" button.  If you read this far then this information is now stuck in your brain forever.  Mwahahahaha!

Tuesday, January 5, 2010

Stress and Healthy Living

All my life I have been extremely sensitive.  Not knowing how to manage it, and living in a world that honours the tough and the cynical has in the past led to me to live with severe, debilitating mental illness.  (Of course there were other issues, but right now I just want to address my innate ultra-sensitivity.)

I've worked for years to get to where I am, and it has been nearly four years since my last hospitalization.  Yes, it was so bad that I was in and out of hospital from 1994 to 2006.  Sometimes I went a couple years between episodes, but I never really felt good until the last few years.  It was a combination of Dialectical Behaviour Therapy, Steve's love, and my hard work that finally did the trick.  I may have a relapse in the future (never say never) but at least now I'd have the memory of being completely in remission to motivate my recovery.

Most of my days now are good days, especially now that I am on maternity leave and don't have the pressure of being at a job all day.  I am able to put into practice my DBT skills with great success, and I have learned how to live my life in order to minimize stress.

Once in awhile though, I still experience a shock to my system that is hard to shake off.  Yesterday, for instance, it snowed all day and it was perfect snowman snow.  Bailey made a tall snowman, and both kids made snow angels (though Ocean needed our help).  It was a wonderful time, which made it all the more heartbreaking when half an hour later we heard mischeivous yelling outside... Bailey ran to the window and saw that her snowman had been destroyed. 

I ran outside as fast as I could but didn't catch the culprits.  That's probably a good thing as my formed-in-an-instant plan was to scream obscenities at them and demand they apologize to my daughter.  Oh, and I was going to call their parents, too.  Yes, I'm soooo mature.  Anyway, Bailey had a big long cry.  Sweet Ocean seemed to notice her pain and laid his little head on her.  I was shaking with anger, and close to tears myself, but I managed to hold myself together.

Later that night I still couldn't shake my low mood.  My muscles ached with tension, my thinking was cloudy, and I longed to lay down in a cool, dark room.  I did lay down for a little while with Ocean.  I tend to get frustrated with myself for being so sensitive.  I mean, snowmen get knocked down all the time, and there will always be people doing jerky things.  Why let it bother me to this extent?  Just get out there and rebuild, damn it!

So I was allowing these self-defeating thoughts to get me down when I realized... if I am so sensitive to pain, does that not also mean that I am extra sensitive to joy as well?  It's true.  The first robin in spring, a flower from my husband, seeing someone do a Random Act of Kindness for someone else; all these things have in the past brought tears to my eyes.  So yes, I do "take to my room" more often than other people, but the other side of this is that joy is also that much more intense.

I need to be careful on this self-improvement journey to keep my sensitivity issues in mind.  I have a tendency to indulge myself with sweets when I am feeling low, and I definitely did that yesterday.  I also need to remember that there are no "bad" foods.  If I want the weight to come off and stay off I must make healthier living an easy and fun part of my life.

Apples are healthy, and always happy!

Sunday, January 3, 2010


Well, despite pigging out on spinach dip and gingerbread castle at our friend's house today I am pleased to report that I have lost two pounds.  Steve has also lost weight, and is down by almost two pounds himself!

We went to Wildlights at the B.C. Wildlife Park immediately after pigging out and had to take turns carrying Ocean around.  So really we were walking while carrying a 20 lb. weight for about an hour and a half.

To celebrate, here is a totally irrelevant picture.  I just think it is really cool.  I took it a couple years ago.

Saturday, January 2, 2010

Positive Thinking in a Cynical World

I have a friend who is very intelligent, witty, well-spoken, and fun to be around. This friend is also a self-described redneck. Lately he has been writing essays about his worldview and I have been shocked and saddened by the contempt he expresses for his fellow humans. I suppose it says something good about humanity that two people who approach life from such completely opposing points of view can commune over a drink and still like each other. (In case he's reading this: you do still like me, right?)

I have decided to be grateful for our (enormous) differences of opinion. It is easy to be grateful for my fellow unschooling friends--who wouldn't be grateful for people who wholeheartedly agree with everything you are thinking and doing?  However, I think it is also important to be grateful for those people and events who challenge me.

This friend's writing has encouraged me to think more deeply about the way I am choosing to live. It's easy to get complacent in one's belief system. After awhile you can't remember that other people don't all think the same way. How I am parenting is radically different from the mainstream, and sometimes I forget how frightening it must be for other people to witness. ("She doesn't send her kids to school, and she lets her daughter do whatever she wants all day! They play a ton of video games, and she doesn't even have a plan for math!")

I struggle with the fact that well-meaning parents who would never hit their friend or even their dog would think nothing of hitting their child, and then have the audacity to say it is for their child's own good! And I feel sad when I see parents repeating what their parents did to them, clearly just getting through life doing what they think they should do based on what everyone else is doing. I also feel sad when I see parents using violent communication methods.
Maybe I sound like an evangelist, but I wish I could help people see that there is a better way. You don't have to have an adversarial relationship with your children! Choose joy. Choose to see the good in everything. It is there.

Friday, January 1, 2010


I never know how to start the first post on a new blog.  All the information about me and about the blog is located on the rest of the page, and it seems redundant to repeat it here.

There!  Got that first awkward paragraph out of the way.

So my husband Steve and I have decided to lose some weight this year.  While discussing this plan with him I realized I wanted more than just pounds lost.  What we really need is a chance to practice making better choices.  I'm not normally one for New Year's resolutions, but I figured I could choose differently this time!

Our goals for this year include:
  • * Weight loss.  I'm about 60 pounds overweight and Steve is about 40 pounds overweight.  Man, I'm 35 years old, and I was skinny all my life until I turned 22.  That's when I suddenly put on a lot of weight.  I was 110 lbs and then I was 160.  Yikes!  I'm sure it's because I never had to pay attention to what I ate.  I had a difficult time with my last pregnancy, and could barely move without a lot of pain.  I don't want to feel like this for the rest of my life, so the weight has to come off!
  • * Spending and Budgeting.  I won't go into all the gory details, but Steve and I have made some spending choices that have not benefitted us.  We are also working to take care of student loans.
  • * Furthering our understanding of Non-Coercive parenting (Taking Children Seriously).  Well, this is one is mostly me, but Steve generally smiles, nods, and joins me on whatever parenting style I want to implement.  Just kidding about the smiling and nodding... I think it's actually trust, and I love him for it.
  • * Emancipating Kamloopsian Society... what the heck do I mean by that?  Well, to me it means helping other people realize that they can choose the more peaceful, loving path whenever they want, and just as importantly, they can allow their children more choice than they ever thought possible.  (By the way I think I can help emancipate the whole world, not just Kamloops... but then the acronym would be GEETWW, and I wouldn't be as pleased with myself for reclaiming the word "geek!")
So what do you think?  Will you join us on this journey?  Steve will be writing occasionally, too.

Here is what we look like now:

This is me now, January 1, 2010.  I have resolved to be as gentle with myself as I would like to be with other people so I will refrain from further comment.  :)

And this is Steve.  I'm so lucky to have him. 

We will be taking a photo every day this year, but won't post them everyday.  At the end of the year Steve will make a weight loss time lapse like this guy's.  Wish us luck!

STATS for January 1, 2010:
Bevin weighs 189 lbs
Steve weighs 203 lbs.

I also want to do measurements for myself (but Steve doesn't want to).
Bust 44"
Waist 42"
Hips 43"
Neck 15"