Feeds:
Posts
Comments

Archive for the ‘weight loss’ Category

After giving this a lot of thought, I’ve decided that keeping up two separate blogs is a bit too much for me right now.  Since my main focus (and much of my free time) is spent thinking about and practicing weight loss, Bella on the Beach is going to be the blog that I concentrate on.

As many of you can tell, I’ve been writing less and less frequently on this blog, and writing on an almost daily basis on the other one.  So, for now (until I’ve completed my weight loss journey, I guess) I’m only going to keep that one going. I’ll still leave this up so that new visitors can read the archives, and I’m sure someday I’ll be back.

This was the blog that started it all, and it will always be close to my heart.  This is my 327th post, and I’ve poured a lot of my heart out onto these pages.  I’ve also made some great blogging buddies, and I appreciate everyone who’s commented.

I wish you all the best, and look forward to seeing you on Bella on the Beach.

Read Full Post »

black-and-white-candles

Today is my 38th birthday, and I guess it’s time for a bit of reflection.  38 is definitely in the “late thirties” category, yet I don’t feel that old at all.  I feel as though I’m in my late twenties, maybe.  I guess that’s because I don’t have a husband, children, or a mortgage, and all of those other things that go with being a responsible adult.

Being young-at-heart runs in my family.  My dad just turned 69 and he doesn’t look it or act it at all.  He’s still so full of life and vigor, and it’s wonderful to see him enjoying his retirement.  (Although he retired 3 years ago, he still substitute teaches because he says the kids keep him young).  My mom is the same way – she’s 62 years old and you would seriously never know it.  She has a really energetic personally that keeps all of us on our toes, and I love it!

This birthday marks 20 years since I graduated from high school.  The summer of 1989 was one of the best ever because it was the one between high school and college.  The summer on the cusp of growing up.  The summer when there were absolutely no responsibilities.  This summer feels very much the same way to me.  It’s the first summer in years that I haven’t worked, and I’m absolutely enjoying every minute of it – even the quieter ones.

So, what’s on tap for today?

  • Well, I started the day with my WW meeting.  The news was good, and the meeting really helped me get on the right track for this week.
  • After the meeting I got the car washed – I love the feeling of a spotless car.
  • Then I came home and did the Wii Fit.  I don’t know what it was, but I broke all sorts of records today.  Maybe there were being nice because it was my birthday?  Or maybe I’m just advancing!
  • I’m planning on spending an hour or so today just reading.  I’ve been really lax about reading this summer (too active, I guess), and it is going to be nice to just sit with a good book.  I’m reading Very Valentine by Adriana Trigiani.  Love her writing and I’m sure this won’t disappoint.
  • Later this afternoon, my mom and I are going shopping!  She said that the gifts that I mentioned to her (she still likes us to give her birthday wish lists) were ones that she needed me to be there to pick out.  I’ve asked for some silver hoop earrings, a new coffeemaker, and a few other items.
  • After the shopping, my mom is making me a birthday dinner – pasta with pesto, barbecued Italian sausage, and a salad.

A birthday spent with family – shopping and eating well – how much better can it get?!

Now to explain the title.  I know all of you can add, but to me, turning 38 is really a wake-up call to me to get back on track with my life list (aka Bucket List, only these are things I want to do by the time I’m 40).  So, I have two years to complete the following:

Things to do before I turn 40:
1. Lose 100 lbs. Working on it, but the progress is slow.  I’m vowing to do this, though.  It’s the most important thing on this list.
2. After weight loss, go on a shopping spree at Anthropologie and Ann Taylor Loft, knowing the clothes will look great!
3. Sky dive.
4. Own a convertible. I should complete this one in August, when I buy the new VW Beetle convertible!
5. Find balance in my life. (I’m so bad with the work/personal life balance). As I wrote earlier this week, I’ve got a great handle on this one.
6. Make spirituality a part of my everyday life.
7. Try yoga. I have not only tried it, but I discovered I LOVE Bikram yoga.  I haven’t been in a while, though, so I’m going to go this month.
8. Start meditating. I tried it a couple of times, but couldn’t seem to quiet my mind long enough.  It might be worth another shot.
9. Get a Brazilian bikini wax.
10. Go to the beach in a bathing suit and feel proud of how I look.
11. Go to NYC.
12. Go to Boston/Connecticut CTLB’s wedding in August ‘08. I’m hoping to go back next summer to see CTLB’s new house.
13. Run a 5K. (Maybe even a 10K). I’ve walked two 5Ks, and have another one coming up July 19th.  Not sure if running one will be realistic.
14. Meet “The One” aka “Mr. Right” and be engaged, or close to it.
15. Own a home (condo/townhouse), even if I’m still single.
16. Go on an exotic vacation to Bali or Morocco.
17. Learn to speak Italian.
18. Get some of my writing published.
19. Use my masters in educational leadership, either in school administration at my school or on the district level working with the new teacher program.
20. Adopt a dog.

So, you can see that I still have several of the items to work on.  Some of them are a bit unrealistic, but that doesn’t mean I can’t try.  You never know what you can do until you attempt it, right?

38 is definitely going to be a great year, I can just feel it.  There is no doubt that I will feel better than I ever have with my increase in activity, focus weight loss, and quitting smoking (July 15th).  There are so many things I want to accomplish, but like you know by now, I’m a girl who loves a goal, and I can’t wait to take some of these on!

Read Full Post »

Ever since I started my weight loss blog, I’ve been writing much less frequently on this one.  Because weight loss is my main focus (almost like a part-time job), it makes sense that I have more to write about that topic than any other.  Still, sometimes I feel badly that this blog, the one I started blogging with, gets pushed back to second-class citizen status.

One thing that seems appropriate to write about here is how I’ve been doing on my quest to “get a life.”  Last August, I wrote a post where I vowed to take back my life and stop living to work instead of just working to live.

I’m happy to report that I am now a reformed workaholic.

It wasn’t easy.  At first I felt like I was really sloughing off on my duties at work.  “I really should go to the play this weekend.” “The students would really like it if I went to that football/basketball/soccer game,” etc.  Instead of feeding into this guilt trip I was laying on myself, I just said no.  I took myself off of the numerous committees I had been serving on and kept only those that I felt were the most important.

Did I feel like I was out of the loop?  Yes.  Did I crave being “in the know” the way I was when I served on lots of different committees and attended tons of school events?  Sure, sometimes.  But that feeling of being slightly out of the dialed in group was well worth the time and energy I found now that I wasn’t spending so much time and effort at work.

It was a strange year for me because CTLB, my best friend at school and one of my best friends in life, left.  I felt a lot lonlier than I had in the past 4 years, when were were “joined at the hip.”  But before you start feeling too sorry for me, I do have an amazing group of friends at school, and we all eat lunch together every day, so it’s not like I sit alone in my classroom and grade papers while I eat a stale sandwich.  (That would never, ever be me, by the way).  We also had a new principal this year, and that made for a lot of changes.  Good changes, but still, there were a lot of things going on this year that left me feeling out of sorts a lot of time time.

But my life outside of the work day was fantastic!  I found that I had tons of free time, and I used it to try new activities, reach out to old friends and make some new ones, spend lots more time with my family, and just enjoy myself by doing whatever I wanted to do – riding my bike, reading a great (or trashy) book, watching movies, cooking, etc.

It seemed idyllic until the school said they were looking for someone to teach a “summer school after school” class.  I saw dollar signs and knew that if I taught the class I would have the money I needed for a down payment on my new car AND I wouldn’t have to work this summer.  So, beginning after February break, I gave up 60 hours+ of free time and taught the class.  (This may not sound like a lot, but this is on top of teaching 5 other classes.  Not to mention grading and prepping for 6 classes).  It is something that I’m glad I did (for the money), but will never do again.  It’s just not worth giving up that much of my life.

All in all, I loved having my life back.  I felt like I was a better teacher because I could look at things from a well rested, happy point of view.  I plan on doing more of the same this coming school year.  Actually, it should be even better because I’m only teaching one honors class, which will dramatically cut down on my paperload.  Can’t wait.

Ok, enough writing, time to get out there and LIVE!

Read Full Post »

Today was the perfect summer day!

The weather was 85 degrees – warm, but not too hot.  Earlier in the week the weather was really overcast, cloudy, and sort of cold.  Not conducive to feeling like you’re on summer vacation.

I started the morning with a WW meeting.  It had been more than a month since I’d gone, and let’s just say the absence showed up on the scale. (To read more about the meeting, check out my weight loss blog).

After WW, I straightened up the house a bit and then went to get the car washed.  The poor thing was disgusting, and I hate driving around like that, especially when the weather is nice.  I always feel so much better when the car is shiny and clean.

Then I headed to my parents’ house to pick up my dad so he could go with me to the nursery to buy some summer flowers for my house.  My dad is an expert gardener and always helps me plant new flowers.  I chose some really beautiful flowers that should do very well.  My house is shaded by two huge trees, which is nice for keeping the heat at bay, but not so great for choosing blooms – most of the flowers I love need full sun.

Window box - this is the view from my front door. Purple colius, yellow begonias, a spider plant (previously planted) and baby's breath ground cover

Window box - this is the view from my front door. Purple colius, yellow begonias, a spider plant (previously planted) and baby's breath ground cover

Front view of the window box

Front view of the window box

Close up of the window box flowers

Close up of the window box flowers

Pots of impatiens for the front stoop

Pots of impatiens for the front stoop

Flower pot and window box

Flower pot and window box

Full front view of my house (on the right)

Full front view of my house (on the right)

Once the flowers start to really take and are in full bloom (within a couple of weeks, I think), I’ll make sure to post updated pictures.  I love flowers, and I think this is definitely one of the harbingers of summer for me – planting the flowers in the front of the yard.  I love going out every other day (or so, depending on the weather) and watering the plants – there’s something very nurturing about it.  Just like cooking. It’s part of what makes a house a home.

After the flowers were planted, I made lunch for my dad and then brought him home once we had finished eating.  I love spending time with him this way.  He’s in his element outside, and he has so much expertise, so it’s really nice to be able to learn a bit from him about one of the things he loves.

When I got home, I decided that I’d take a short bike ride to the library to pick up the books I had requested.  Nothing is better than getting that email notification from the library telling you that you’re books are on hold.  Love it!  I didn’t realize that I had ordered quite so many books, though.  I had 9 hardcovers to fit into my bike basket!  Luckily it’s big enough, so everything fit – just barely.  It was great to bike the 2.6 miles roundtrip because it was just enough of a workout to get my blood pumping and make me feel alive.

Now I’m about to get ready to go out to dinner at Thea, one of my favorite Greek restaurants, with one of my old high school pals.  I’m so glad that she and I reconnected a few months ago because I really missed our friendship.  The thing is, nothing really happened – we just lost touch after high school as it’s so easy to do.  Thankfully, we found each other on Facebook (gotta love social networking sites!) and have gotten together about once a month ever since.

All in all, a wonderful summer day – I hope to have many, many more just like this one.

Read Full Post »

Lately, I’ve been hearing that question a lot.  This is the first summer where I haven’t signed up to work, and I couldn’t be happier.  I’m looking forward to actually getting one of the full benefits of teaching – an entire 2-month period of time off.

My mom in particular is worried that I’ll get bored.  She knows me too well, because when I get bored, I start to spend money.  What better way to ebb boredom than to go shopping, right?  Well, not this summer.

This summer I plan to do nothing.

And by “nothing,” I mean that the plan is no plan. Nothing too specific. Mornings spent reading the newspaper while sipping coffee. Walking. Working out. Swimming. Biking. Lots if activity & focus on weight loss. Keeping the house super clean and organized. Feeling like every day is a Saturday, even when it’s Tuesday.  Thursday morning WW meetings. Seeing friends. Buying produce and flowers from the farmers market every Friday. Overusing my Netflix queue. Music in the Park. Cooking healthy, delicious meals for myself every day. Laying in the sun reading a captivating book. Shopping, but trying not to spend too much $.  Starlight Cinema.  Buying a new car in August when my current lease is up.  (I’m thinking a VW Beetle convertible would suit me perfectly).  A tiny bit if tweaking my current curriculum. And lots and lots of writing on this blog and BellaOnTheBeach.

Summer afternoon, summer afternoon; to me those have always been the two most beautiful words in the English language.

— Henry James

Read Full Post »

Regular readers of this blog may be wondering why my writing has been so infrequent.

Last year (December 2007), I started a weight loss blog as a way for me to write about my journey.  What began as a secondary blog to share my weight loss stats has turned into a primary blog with a community of weight loss bloggers who offer me amazing support and encouragement.

Living a healthy life has become the primary focus of my life.  This encompasses weight loss, exercising, trying new recipes, attending WW, and celebrating all the little victories that add up to huge success on the scale and beyond.

I guess you could say that taking care of myself and losing weight have become a sort of hobby for me. But the word “hobby” doesn’t even begin to cover what embarking and continuing on this journey means to me.  It’s all-encompassing, and it feels amazing.

Which means that if you want to read my writing on a daily (or almost daily) basis, you should bookmark Bella on the Beach, my weight loss blog.

I’ll still be writing here, but it will be less frequent.  I want to save this blog for truly amazing, inspiring, funny, and poignant things that happen in my life. Sometimes, these things happen several times a week; other times, they may happen only a few times a month.

Life is good, and I couldn’t be happier.

Read Full Post »

I’m sure that when you read this post about Mr. Done, you thought I was fooling myself.  Or that I was naiive.  Or that I wasn’t paying enough attention to recent history to make better choices.

And you would’ve been right.

You see, Mr. Maybe aka Mr. Done never did take me out on that date.  He called the morning of the date (last Saturday), to tell me that he had woken up with a bad sore throat, a stuffy nose, and a bad cold.  To say I was disappointed is putting it mildly.  To say that I took it well is giving me too much credit.  I was mad that we weren’t going to go out, an emotion that I chose to display as coldness on the phone call.  I told him in a very icy tone that I hoped he felt better, by which I meant, “are you seriously cancelling on me?”  When he said, “maybe we can reschedule for next weekend?,” I responded with another cold, “ya, maybe.  We’ll see.”

I think I was trying to come off as indifferent about the whole thing, and it must have worked.  Mr. Maybe/Mr. Done hasn’t called me.  At all.

Not after I felt guilty about how cold I had been and called him on Tuesday, under the guise of seeing if he felt better.  Not on Wednesday, Thursday, Friday, or Saturday.  And not today.

Which leads me now being angry.  At him and at myself.  At him because he’s obviously still a flake who really isn’t ready for anything serious, regardless of his text message about wanting a LTR.  And at me because I gave in to this longing I have to be with someone, even though I knew in my heart that Mr. Maybe/Mr. Done wasn’t the right person for me.

Yes, he and I had fun together.  Yes he “got” me.  And yes, he has a good job and is intelligent.  But while each of those things sounds good on paper, none of them add up to Mr. Maybe/Mr. Done being the right guy for me.  He reminded me this week (in his loud absence) that when he and I were dating the first time, I was always waiting for him.  Waiting for his call, waiting for his attention, waiting for him to show as much interest in me, in us, as I had.  And I’m done waiting for him.

So, I’m back to square one.  Single.  Not that I wasn’t before last week, but I did have this tiny hope that this New Year’s Eve I’d be on a date, beginning a relationship that would be the stuff the dreams are made of.  That all this time spent by myself would have been worth it, because I was finally with someone who really did love me for me.

I don’t want to give the idea that I’m feeling self pity, because I’m not.  Yes, I was rather depressed this past week, but then I realized that I didn’t want to give Mr. Done this much power over my emotions.  He didn’t deserve it.  Plus, I still have so much work to do on myself, with my weight loss, and I think that it might have to be done alone.  Which is not to say that I’m not open to meeting someone while I’m still in the process of losing weight, because I am.  But I’m also ok with being on my own for the duration.

What scares me is the thought that I might be on my own forever.  I’m evolved and self-confident enough to know that if I am single forever, I can lead a happy, fulfilling life.  But there is a huge part of me that knows that I want to be with someone to share my life with.  I want to have a loving, normal, happy relationship with a man who loves me and can’t wait to spend time with me.  I know that I’m still “young” at 37, and that there’s no age limit on finding love and happiness.  I just have to keep my impatience at bay and fill my life with other things that make me happy.

Because you never know who is waiting, just around the corner.

Read Full Post »

Older Posts »