Wednesday, December 28, 2011

2011 Goal Wrap-Up and 2012 Goals

Friends!!!
Remember way back in January of 2011when I posted a list of Life Goals I wanted to work on? Well, even though I haven't been posting about them regularly here, I have been working on them, and I actually did really well!!! I completed 3 out of 4, Huzzah!!! The 2012 goals I am creating for myself are in a similar vein to the 2011 goals, but they are more specific, and more challenging. However, before we get to those, let's do a check-in with the 2011 Goals:

THE GOALS:

#1 Build Up My Savings: WIN. Had major repair work done on my car, put down a security deposit on our new apartment, and gave the down payment to our wedding photographer ALL OUT OF SAVINGS!!! Going back to work full-time has certainly helped me to do all of this, but so has more careful attention to spending. Am I an angel? No, by no means, but I have definitely improved this year. Continuing to pay for our portion of the wedding with savings is a big 2012 goal, but I'll get to that in a minute.

#2 Regular Blog Posting: DRAW. I seem to go in spurts with this, depending on how busy I am. I'll blog every day or at least once a week betwen my two blogs for months, and then I'll stop for weeks or months because I get too busy. Although I did not meet my once-a-week quota consistently, I am still considering this goal a success, because I blogged more regularly and with more dedication in 2011 than I did in any of the years preceding, so there was definite progress.

#3 Lose 30lbs: LOSE. Or, should I say, FAIL. Fail Fail Faily Fail FAAAAAIIIILLLL. Okay, sorry, I'm done now. Seriously, though, I did not meet my weight loss goal. I was actually doing really well the first quarter of the year. By April 2011 I had lost a little over 10 lbs, which was right where I wanted to be at that point in the year. I was on track, excited, feeling great. And then, for some reason, I plateaued in May. I didn't put any weight back on, but I stopped losing. And then, in June, for reasons that are still a complete mystery to me, I put on 5lbs in the space of a week. Seriously, I weighed myself on Monday, and by Friday my weight had gone up 5lbs, with no change to my diet or exercise routine. My body fat stayed the same, my dimensions stayed the same, but those 5lbs just appeared. I was livid, rattled and frustrated...I'm getting riled up again just typing about it. I was right in the midst of The Bodice Challenge, exercising every day, eating well, taking good care of myself, and BOOM! There they were. It has been postulated that it was because I was putting on muscle, but I find that unlikely, because if that were the case, my percent body fat would have decreased, or my measurements would have changed, but they did not. Those mystery 5lbs stuck with me like glue. I stayed at that weight for most of the summer, and eventually came to terms with it. Outside observers said I looked great and that they could see a change, even though the numbers didn't agree, so I eventually made my peace and went with it. I stayed at that weight for most of the Summer. By late Summer/Early Autumn I had gone back to work full-time at a desk job, and my daily activity level had gone down quite a bit, and that decrease in activity started to show up in my weight, I was working all day and rehearsing for several different shows, always on the run, no time to cook, and eating out a lot. Unsurprsingly, I eventually put back on everything that I had lost. When I officially weighed myself on January 3rd, 2011, I weighed 162.4lbs. Today, January 6th, 2012, I weigh 164.8lbs. So, in short, I gained back everything I lost, plus an extra 2.5 lbs. Like I said, FAIL. I am obviously not happy about this, but rather than continuing to bitch about it here, I'll turn it into a new goal for 2012, see below.

#4 Use My Time More Effectively: WIN. Again, going back to work full time has helped with this. I am always up at a decent hour, and since I'm on the computer all day day at work, I spend very little time in front of the computer during my non-work hours (unless I'm blogging:).We have recently moved into our new apartment (yay!) and, by choice, we are not getting cable. I'm sure I could always be better, but across 2011 I can see a definite pattern of using my time much more effectively,and I'm actually rather proud of myself :)

Three out of Four isn't too shabby :) Well Done, Lynniebee :)

And now, it's a New Year, with new Goals :)


2012 Goals


#1. Pay for Our Portion of Our Wedding Without Accruing Any New Debt: In other words, no loans, no new credit cards, no maxing out of credit cards. We will pay for our portion of our wedding primarily through savings, and utilizing only our existing bank accounts and credit cards (I only have one credit card, and Mikey only has one card also). Out of respect for our families' privacy, I will not enumerate who is paying for what, only that the financial responsibilities that Mikey and I have agreed on will be paid for using only our exisitng savings and assets, and that we will begin our married life together in the black, with no new debt. How are we going to accomplish this? Glad you asked! These are some of the ways I/we plan on doing this:

-NO NEW BOOKS!!! I am placing myself on a Book-Buying Fast. From now until September 22nd, 2012, I am not allowed to buy any books. I am allowed to borrow books from friends or the library, I am allowed to accept books as gifts, and I am allowed to acquire books at Stuff Swap Parties with friends (as in, no $ is changing hands). Exception: If I attend any sort of class between now and September that requires a text book, I am allowed to buy the text book if I am unable to borrow or trade someone for it.

-NO NEW CLOTHES!!! I am allowed to acquire clothes at Clothing Swaps, I am allowed to buy clothes at thrift stores, and I am allowed to accept clothes as gifts or as hand-me-downs from friends. Exception: My Wedding Dress

The next portion of how I plan to accomplish this Savings Goal actually leads me into Goal#2 *points down*

Goal#2. Eat Out a Maximum of Twice Per Week: Let's be honest. I love to go out to eat at restaurants. I also love to write reviews for restaurants. However, as you have probably gathered by reading my other blog, I also love to cook. I try to keep these two sides of culinary pleasure in balance, but lately, due to being extremely busy and extemely exhausted, I have been leaning far too heavily on the restaurant/takeout side. It will be better for both my wallet and my waistline if I cook at home more often. I am allowed to get takeout or eat a restaurant a maximum of twice per week (once a week or not at all is preferable, but I am allowed up to twice per week guilt-free :) This includes stopping at a coffee shop and lunch breaks (as in, doing these things count towards the twice a week limit). I now lives upstairs from my dayjob, so forgetting to pack/bring a lunch is not an acceptable excuse. Other than those two meals, all other meals will be created from the weekly grocery shopping. Yes, I do know that most grocery chains have ready made sandwiches, dinners, sushi, etc. That is a gray area that I haven't quite sorted out yet, Mikey and I will deal with that on a case by case basis for the moment, and I'll come back to it later. Going to friend's or family's homes for a potluck or a home cooked meal does not count towards the quota, however, pitching for pizza or other takeout does count toward the quota, as money will be expended. This is going to be hard, I fully realize this, and I am as prepared as a foodie on a budget possibly can be.....in a way, I'm also really excited. For the first time since grad school, I have my own kitchen :)  My pots and pans are calling to me, I can't wait to play with them again :)

Goal#3. Love My Body Again.  In previous years, I have called this goal *Lose Weight* or *Get Healthy* or *Daily Exercise*, or something along those lines, but I inevitably fall short of those. Those all sound like punishments and chores. This past year has shown me that I do not love myself anywhere near enough. I try to be endlessly loving and supportive to others, but I don't save enough of that love for myself. I have flashes of real self-love, but they are not constant, they come and go. Even my attempts at weight loss and better health are not motivated by self-love. They are motivated by guilt and disgust, feeling like I am broken and need to be fixed, like somehow my life would magically be better if I dropped 30lbs, and that's bullshit. Rationally, I know it is bullshit, and I would NEVER encourage this kind of thinking in anyone else. But for reasons unclear to me, I still do it, not all the time, but more than I should. This year I want to actually learn and embody real self-love that is not dependent on what size jeans I wear. Do I still want to lose weight? Yes. Do I still want to improve my eating and exercise habits? Yes. But I want to re-examine my motivations for wanting these things and approach them from a different place. I want to love myself the way I am and still strive to improve. And when I pursue these health goals, I want to support myself they way I would support a loved one, no beating myself up. This will be a huge challenge, and a hard one to measure empirically, but I'm worth it :)

I'll be updating regarding these goals as often as it is relevant, but I will try not to make them the constant topic of conversation :) Any advice/support/feedback you care to share would be most welcome :)

2012 is going to be a very excting year for me :) Can't wait for all the adventures to come!!!

Love,
Lynn









Tuesday, December 27, 2011

Magpie

So, after being inspired my two of my skainsmates, I've decided to join Magpie Tales :)

In their own words, Magpie Tales is "dedicated to the enjoyment of poets and writers, for the purpose of honing their craft, sharing it with like-minded bloggers, and keeping their muses alive and well. "

They post an image and invite their followers to write a poem or short vignette inspired by the image :)

What a fabulous idea!!!

Here's my first offering:
I haven't
seen
a real
smile
from Marylin
Since
she was
still
Norma Jean


Go check out Magpie Tales!!!

http://magpietales.blogspot.com/


Love,
Lynn

Wednesday, November 9, 2011

LynnieBee A to Z :)

Just a quickie for now, these little survey thingies are fun and I haven't done one in awhile, I stole this from Deanna over at Crunchy Chicken, enjoy!!!

Age: 28, turning 29 in a few weeks.

Bed size: Currently, double, but my preferred size is Queen. Although a King might be fun for novelty's sake :)

Chore I hate: Washing Dishes.

Dogs: Nope, had two when I was kid, but now we just have one kitty, Molly, aka *Ishky*

Essential start to my day: Nothing comes to mind, let's go with *waking up*, which is an essential portion of EVERY day :)

Favorite color: That's a tough one. I like certain shades of every color...if I was absolutely forced to pick favorites I would have to say Blue, and my favorite color combos are Blue and Gold & Red and Gold

Gold or silver: If we're talking jewelry, I like both :)

Height: 5"2

Instruments I play: I'm a Singer. I can sight-read, and I can plunk out the melody line of a song on a piano, but mostly my voice is my instrument of choice :)

Job title: Depends on which hat I'm wearing. For my artistic pursuits, I am an Actor and a Teaching Artist, for my day job I am a Client Services/Marketing Representative.

Kids: None yet, hopefully someday :)

Live: Liverpool, NY

Mother's name: Carolyn

Nicknames: Lynnie, Lynn-Lynn, Lynniebee, Rogue, and the list goes on from there :)

Overnight hospital stays: I was a preemie, so I was kept in the hospital a few extra days after I was born so I could be monitored, but, thankfully, I haven't had one since....

Pet Peeve: Bad Grammar, Bad Personal Hygeine, Waiting in Line, Heavy Traffic, Willful Ignorance, Deliberate Cruelty, people with Big Egos and Small Minds...

Quote from a movie: "Well, to make a long story short.....TOO LATE!!!"

Right or left handed: Right

Siblings: Two  younger brothers.

Time I wake up: During the week, my alarms goes off at 6:10 am, sometimes I get up right away, sometimes I hit snooze until 6:20-25. On the weekends, it depends on what's going on that day and what time I went to bed the night before. But even on the weekends, I'm usually up by 9am.

Underwear: Yes'm.

Vegetable I hate: Broccoli and Cauliflower.

What makes me run late: *soapbox* I despise being late. When left to my own devices, I am almost always early, and if not early, exactly on time. However, I am often surrounded by people who are unburdened by time, and I get slowed down waiting for them.....

X-rays I've had: Just dental x-rays...

Yummy food I make: Pumpkin Soup, All of my pasta sauces, Chocolate Peanut Butter Cake, actually, most of my food is pretty damn yummy, if I do say so myself :)

Zoo animal: Wolves, Lions, Tigers, Bears, (oh my!) Monkeys

Love,
Lynn

Wednesday, November 2, 2011

So far, so good

The first few days have been going quite well :)

I haven't gone out for (read: haven't spent money on) breakfast, lunch, or dinners out at all this week. I've been doing pleasure reading every day for at least a few minutes. I put away all my laundry and went through some more clothes for the next clothing swap. I've been taking luxurious hot showers every night before bed, and tonight I'm going to get a haircut and an eyebrow wax. Tomorrow is my Friday since we are going to Ohio this weekend to visit my brother and the weather is looking good :)

Huzzah :)

Lynn

Monday, October 31, 2011

Wizard's Duel

Everyone loves a Challenge!!!

This duel is between me and that which stands between me and what I want within myself and out of life :)

Many thanks must be given to my dear friend Merlyn for originating this duel and bringing it to all of us :) To read about the beginnings of the Wizard's Duel in detail and other thoughts and comments from those involved, please go visit Merlyn's Musing's. Her last week or so of postings all concern the Wizard's Duel :)

In brief, this is how the Challenge began
-we described our perfect day
-we reflected on the elements of our perfect day and that brought to light the essence of what makes us happy. Among those elements,we chose a few to work on, some goals to strive for, a journey to take us a few steps farther down the path to Happiness :)
-we brainstormed ways to take steps towards those goals and that happiness in the next 30 days
-we made plans on how to take those steps
-we decided what we leave behind
-we chose our steed
-And today, on Halloween/Samhain, the Earthen New Year's, we begin the Journey :)


The two areas that I most want to work on are Health/Self Love and Creative/Artisitic Fulfillment :)

These are steps I'm going to take towards furthering these goals this month :)

First Leg of the Journey:
Health/Body Image
-Practice good self-care (I’ve been going nonstop for months, and basically taking no time for ME) I can:
-treat myself to a haircut and a massage or some other spa treatment
- take some long, hot baths
-read for pleasure (the script for whatever play I’m currently working on DOESN’T COUNT)
- Drink more tea
-get more sleep
- take my vitamins
-Eat Dinner at HOME
- make more time to cook meals
- eat more veggies and less junk
- no hard and fast restrictions, just be sensible
-aim for at least a little extra physical activity every day
-For curiosity’s sake, I will weigh myself and take my measurements on Oct. 31st or Nov.1st, then I will WALK AWAY from the scale and the measuring tape and not weigh or measure myself until Nov. 30th or December 1st.

Artistic and Creative Fulfillment
-revise my Acting and Teaching Resume’s
-continue with my Syracuse Shakespeare Fest/Rep Company rehearsals/performances
- Cook
- Blog about said Cooking
-get back to my weekly if not daily blogging routine
-possibly audition for a Spring show
-work on at least one crafty project I’ve been meaning to get to
-work on planning our WEDDING!!!

This month, there is no room in my sadlebag for these, so this is what I'm leaving behind:
-Self Doubt
-the phrase "I don't have time to____"
-Lack of Willpower
-Laziness
-Lack of motivation
-the phrase"I'm too tired to____"
-the phrase "I hate how I look"
-the phrase"I don't know where to start"

This morning, true to my original thought above, I weighed myself and took my hip and waist measurements. Now I am WALKING AWAY. I will not weigh or measure myself for the next 30 days. I will be sensible, but I will not deprive myself. I will be sweet and loving and gentle to myself, something I have not been in a long time :)

I'm not exactly sure how I am going to blog about this. I do want to write about it regularly, if not daily, but I'm not sure if I want to just post a laundry list of what I did that day, since I've done challenges like that before, and there's absolutely nothing wrong with that, I've just done it already.  So, I'll feel it out over the next few days and see how it goes :)

I love adventures :)

Lynn :)

Friday, September 30, 2011

Simple Pleasures: September 30th

Wow, this month flew by.....first I wanted to thank Nubby who dreamed up this challenge and inspired me to join in :)

- Getting a damn respectable amount of work done at my job today

- midday snuggles from Mikey on my lunch break

- hot soup and crusty bread for dinner

- getting ALL of my laundry put away

-another off-book rehearsal for Othello that we got through without any major catastrophes :)

- looking forward to lots of great stuff this weekend :)

I am so glad I did this challenge. Some days were easier than others, but it was always worth it. There is good in every day, even the shite ones, if you have the courage to look for it. I am grateful for all the blessings in my life :) I wish I could come up with more eloquent thoughts on the topic as a wrap up, but allow me to direct you to my dear friend Merlyn's blog, who stuck with me all of this month too. Her reflections are put much more beautifully than I could ever hope to do, revel in them, as I have :)

I think I am drawn to these 30 Day Challenges because I fear that if I were to just write about what comes into my head, no one would want to read it. Having an outline or subject or challenge to write on takes some of the pressure off. Maybe my next writing challenge for myself will be no challenge at all, to merely write as I am moved to write and see what happens, I'll give it my best shot :) Thanks for listening!

With Love,
Lynn








Simple Pleasures: September 29th

- sort of/almost/maybe getting the hang of a new task I have at work

- flipping through cookbooks with Steph on our lunch break thinking about recipes she could make for Book Club on Monday

- looking at some wedding gowns online :)

- getting through our first off-book rehearsal for Othello with no major catastrophes

- leaving my bedroom window open and feeling the cool autumn night air :)

Love,
Lynn

Wednesday, September 28, 2011

Simple Pleasures: September 28th

- having a handful of Hershey's Kisses and then having the fortitude to walk away and not have more. That could almost be construed as portion control :)

- getting to have lunch with Mikey today :)

- a good long text chat with one of my girls :)

- A wee bit of retail therapy :) There's a pair of boots of I've had my eye on for AGES, but all the shoe websites I've seen them on seem to always be out of my size. I've been squirreling money away for weeks for them, and then, today, FINALLY, I found a website that carried them in my size!!! Mikey offered to go in halfsies with me on them as an early birthday present :) I nabbed them up and they'll be here next week! Huzzah! It has been literally years since I had a good pair of all-purpose knee-high boots, I can't WAIT until they get here!


Love,
Lynn



Simple Pleasures: September 27th

- the fact that the people in my office actually take the time to say good morning and good night to each other

- getting good news about about a friend who had surgery

- going to the library and reading on a rainy evening before rehearsal

- a very productive night of fight choreography for Othello

- seeing my sweet Michael on the 11 o'clock news becasue he helped our friend Heather grant a Wish at a Pirate-themed Make A Wish Party for a little boy who is a cancer survivor :)

- a cozy bedtime shower

Love,
Lynn

Monday, September 26, 2011

Simple Pleasure: September 26th

- I forgot my glasses today, and Mikey drove all the way back home to get them for me (we're still sharing my car as the paperwork gets finished on his new one) and he brought me an iced chai :) I love this man :)

- A GORGEOUS day, I bought a sandwich and took it down to a grassy patch by the river and laid down under a tree, I closed my eyes and listened to the wind in the leaves and the river and the faraway sound of traffic and blissed out.....FANTABULOUS :)

- something happend to me today that has basically never happened to me at any of my *day jobs*. Last week I took over a task that used to belong to someone else. The person that was training me to do this task got pulled into another project and didn't get to finish training me. I tried to wing it on my own and was doing fairly well, but I was running into more and more things I didn't understand. I mentioned this to my supervisors, saying that I was feeling a little overwhelmed and confused and I was going to need more training in order to do the task efficiently. And, THEY LISTENED. They were sympathetic and supportive and made arrangements for my training on this task to conitnue. It's been literally years since that has happend at one of my day jobs. My request wasn't ignored, I wasn't made to feel bad or stupid or like I was being a pain. They listened to what I had to say and they made arrangments to help me. I was floored by that.....in the good way :)

- Had my engagement ring re-sized to fit my finger more snugly, so now I don't have to panic that it will accidentally fall off while I'm washing my hands or something :)

- dinner on the screened-in porch at Steph and Mike's house on what will probably be one of the last warm nights of the season :)

Love,
Lynn





Simple Pleasures: September 25th

- lovely long bruch with Jen, a new and dear friend that we met this summer in the 'Shire :)

- seeing a hug flock of geese grazing in the field in front of a middle school near my house

- after a solid week of complete wheat avoidance, I allowed my self a few small servings of wheat over the weekend, and I am happy and relieved to report that they caused me absolutely no discomfort or GI distress whatsoever. I'm not about to go on a full-on binge or anything, but it seems that a moderate amount of wheat doesn't affect me, so either the sesitivity is mild, or I've misinterpreted the sensitivity. I'll play with levels and see how it goes :)

- lovely family dinner for my grandparent's 46th Wedding Anniversary!

- a gorgeous warm day, I enjoyed it very much because it'll probably be one of our last...

- The Buffalo Bills beat the New Enlgand Patriots!!!

- listening to my family debate politics, discussion of that type I try to stay out of, but they're amusing to watch :)

Love,
Lynn

Saturday, September 24, 2011

Simple Pleasures: September 24th

- A damp but lovely early morning at the Farmer's Market

- I scored a Coach Bag today for $13.00!!! (Thanks to the extreme generosity of my wonderful Michael, he got me a Coach gift card for our anniversary and I've been hanging onto it for months!)

- Lovely sushi lunch

- went to see NATC's *A Few Good Men* and enjoyed it very much :)

Love,
Lynn






Simple Pleasures: September 23rd

- had a phone conversation at work today with a woman from Alabama who had an absolutely adorable deep Southern accent, an absolutely pleasure to listen to :)

- had a salad for dinner with DELICIOUS Cherry-Balsamic Vinaigrette dressing

- My first hot chai tea latte of the Autumn

- another awesome Othello rehearsal :)

Love,
Lynn






Thursday, September 22, 2011

Simple Pleasures: September 22nd

- One year from today I will marry my sweet Michael :) I cannot wait to be his wife :)

- Accidentally poured 2% milk on my cereal this morning instead of skim. WOW, it was so CREAMY and actually had FLAVOR. I've been drinking skim milk for so long, I've sort of forgotten that 1%, 2% and whole milk actually have flavor, they taste like, well, MILK. YUM.

- Flipping through the autumn Pottery Barn Catalog with Steph on our lunch break.

-Awesome sushi dinner Steph and Mike (and my Mike) at Club Sushi at Mohegan Manor in B'ville :) I had salad, a California Roll, an Alaskan Roll, and Creme Brulee, indulgent and delcious and not a speck of wheat in it!!!

- Surviving my first real wheat temptation. REALLY wanted a piece of the homemade garlic pizza Staph made for lunch, but worked through it and stayed strong.

- Slowly but surely getting off-book for Othello, scene by scene :)




Simple Pleasures: September 21st

- three days into my wheat-free experiment and, while not exactly convenient, I can honestly say I have had no cravings, have had no GI angst and have lost almost 2lbs :)

- realzing that there is no wheat in ice cream (at least, in the ice cream that was in my freezer) and treating myself to a bowl of it :)

- watching episodes of Ghost Adventures that Mikey and I DVR'd months ago and didn't get around to watching until last night.


Love,
Lynn

Wednesday, September 21, 2011

Simple Pleasures: September 20th

I'm sorry these have all been going up the next morning,, but I'm usually away from my computer in the evenings...

- Mikey and I are sharing my car this week until he gets his new one, so he drove me to work this morning, it was nice to be able to sit back and relax through my morning commute :)

- Helping Stephanie pull possible Othello costumes from the BTG Costume Collection :)

- sitting down to watch a t.v. show with my father, who I haven't seen in days because we work oppoiste schedules :)

Love,
Lynn

Tuesday, September 20, 2011

Simple Pleasures: September 19th

- being able to wear real clothes again. A lot of the other days jobs I've had since finishing school involved a uniform of one kind or another or a dress code. Which, while convenient, can be really annoying and stifling. I love being able to dress with intent and feeling pretty :)

- In an attempt to isolate and possible food sensitivity, I am attempting to be wheat free (not necessarily strictly gluten free) for at least a few weeks and hopefully a full 30 days. Yesterday was my first non-wheat day and I am pleased to report that I did not feel starved or deprived or tempted in the presence of wheat. Dinner was a little bit of challenge, I had to resort to leftover baked chicken and leftover corn, but I still managed to feed myself :)

Love,
Lynn

Monday, September 19, 2011

Simple Pleasures: September 17th and 18th

- absolutely FANTASTIC Engagement Party in Rochester with many of our wonderful friends :) We FEASTED on antipasto, bruschetta, pesto with homemade bread, honeyed figs and canteloupe, pasta, homemade sauce, meatballs and garlic bread, and then continued with Red Velvet Cake, Champagne and cocktails and vanilla biscotti. Then we built a bonfire and made s'mores and set off fireworks and ran around in the dark with sparklers!!! IT. WAS. EPIC. Michael and I continue to be deeply touched by the love in ourlives, we are very blessed :)

- Driving to brunch Sunday morning and seeing two gorgeous swans by the side of the road :)

- White Chocolatr Macadamia Nut pancakes at Brunch, it was like eating a White Chocolate Macadamia Nut cookie from Sterling in Pancake form! *NOM!*

- Helping Mikey with a school project :)

- some gorgeous Autumn weather :)

Love,
Lynn

Friday, September 16, 2011

Simple Pleasures: September 16th

- a gorgeous Autumn day, I got to wear one my favorite sweaters, and peach cashmere cardigan :)

- found a Tom Waits cover of the song *Goodnight Irene* on YouTube, it just about broke my heart, it was so gorgeously, gut-wrenchingly sad. So, the simple pleasure in that is finding a song that would move me so deeply.

- Tonight at rehearsal I got to stretch my performer muscles, and under the guidance of our wonderful directors and equally wonderful fight choreographer, I was able to to move members of our production staff to tears when we worked on Desdemona's death scene. Every once in awhile I am granted a moment of perfect character bonding, Desdemona and I were the same person tonight and that felt so fucking good I can't even put it into words. There may be a slight possibility that I'm something akin to talented ;) I am so fucking excited about this show!!!

- seeing my breath tonight when we got out of rehearsal  :)

Love,
Lynn





Simple Pleasures: September 15th

- My first day giving myself sublingual allergy drops without the supervision of a Doctor/Nurse. I'm glad to report that I didn't screw it up and did not go into anaphylactic shock :)

- A few weeks back my wonderful soon-to-be Sister in Law Alicia gave me several lovely scarves that all came from Afghanistan, Iraq, and other locales in the Middle-East. They soft and sily and warm and GORGEOUS :) This morning was the first time that it was actually chilly enough to wear one, and you can bet I'm sporting one right now :) I feel all pretty-like :)

- I know I post this a lot, but I'm so pleased with how rehearsalsfor Othello are going. We took a few publicity photos last night and they look great!

Love,
Lynn

Wednesday, September 14, 2011

Simple Pleasures: Sepetember 14th

- went to a Doctor's appointment this morning and my blood pressure was 116/68!!!! Wahoooo!!!!

-FINALLY getting around to joining Pandora and creating some radio stations :)

- making up a new recipe :) Quinoa with lamb, roasted almonds, feta cheese and pan sauteed apples and butternut squash :) The flavors are presently melding and mellowing in the fridge, I'll test it again tomorrow and if it's a success I'll do a food blog post about it :)

- New Cook Book to savor :)

- Gorgeous weather around these parts today :)

Love,
Lynn








Tuesday, September 13, 2011

Simple Pleasures: September 13th

- beginning research for our Book for next month's Book Club, The Legend  of Sleepy Hollow :)

- another great Othello rehearsal :)

- I really shouldn't have done it, but I had pizza and a chocolate milkshake for dinner, they were DELICIOUS :)

- a refreshing evening rain :)

Love,
Lynn



Simple Pleasures: September 12th

Again, sorry this didn't go up last night

- getting all of my clean laundry put away, my bedroom looks so much less cluttered now!

- Trying a new recipe for Book Club, phyllo wrapped baked mozzarella sticks....unfortunately, they had nowhere near the structural integrity I was hoping for, the cheese melted out of the phyllo and it become a gooey mess, but they tasted really good, and people seemed to enjoy them, so that's good :)

- Book Club Book Club Book Club!!!! I love our Story Book Club, it's so wonderful to discuss literature with awesome, intelligent, yet hilarious and laidback friends :) And OMG we FEAST!!!

Love,
Lynn :)

Sunday, September 11, 2011

Simple Pleasures: September 11th

- I can't exactly call this is a "pleasure", but I attended a 9/11 Memorial Service this morning at Fire Station #1 in Cicero, and while incredibly, incredibly difficult and emotionally draining, it was very cathartic and I'm exceedingly glad I went.I really don't know if I can accurately talk about it, at some later date I'll will do my best. For now let me just say that that day left marks on everyone, and my heart goes out to everyone who was touched in any way by the events of 9/11, either in the immediate or in the removed sense...

- Theresa came to visit me today!!!

- Making peach butter and apple squares with Theresa and lots of help from Mikey :)

- homemade sauce for dinner :)

- eating dinner outside

- having a fiance' that fixes things and does laundry :)

Love,
Lynn :)








Saturday, September 10, 2011

Simple Pleasures: September 10th

- A chilly but sun-filled early autumn morning at the Farmer's Market :)

- an impromptu but successful Buttermilk Scones recipe :)

- Lovely housewarming party at my soon-to-be Brother and Sister-in-Law's gorgeous new house!

- Baby snuggles from my niece :)

- Watching Ghost Adventures with Mikey :)

Love,
Lynn





Simple Pleasures: September 9th

 Again, sorry this didn't go up last night, it was too late when I got home..

- had a rough ride into work this morning. A lot of the local radio stations are doing 9/11 tributes, complete with sounds clips and parts of news broadcats from that day, and I was completely not prepared for that. I started to cry and shake in my car and was completely rattled by the time I got to work. The memoires of that day are still so fresh....however, that's not the pleasures part. The simple pleasures part was that when I got to work, I had a friend to talk to about it when I got there, and just the knowledge that she understood how I felt ( even more keenly than I, as she lived in NYC during the attacks) made me feel better, I am so thankful to have a friend I can talk to :)

- Sunshine :)

- another awesome Othello rehearsal :)

Love,
Lynn





Friday, September 9, 2011

Simple Pleasures: September 8th

Sorry this didn't go up last  night, I got home too late, here ya go :)

- My first cider and donut of the autumn :)

- stolen moments of reading a favorite book :)

- an AWESOME Othello rehearsal :)

Love,
Lynn

Wednesday, September 7, 2011

Simple Pleasures: September 7th

- a cozy sweater on a a chilly, rainy morning

- a day job with flex time that enables me to come in, work for a few hours, leave for a few hours for a doctor's appointment, and then come back and work for a few more hours and not need to use any sick time or vacation time

- sitting through a full spectrum allergy skin test, receiving 60 shots (30 in each arm) and not being the least bit frightened or jumpy. After all the blood work I've had done these last few years, needles have ceased to upset me. This is one childhood fear that I have knocked out cold, and damn it, that feels pretty fecking good :)

Wheee!!!
Lynn :)

The Story of *Stuff*

Greetings, Mates :)
       Sometimes, the story your stuff tells about you is more truthful and more entertaining than any story that you could make up. Does anyone else remember that t.v. show  from the late 90’s/early 2000’s, I think it was on MTV, where a person was given access to the bedrooms of three people of the opposite gender, and decided which one of them to go on a date with based on what their bedrooms looked like?  Every once in a while, I’ll look at my belongings and wonder what sort of conclusions people would draw about me if they didn’t know me, but had access to my stuff, my books, my clothes, my mementos, etc.

                 Or, perhaps, instead of the contents of my bedroom, how about the contents of my car? For your entertainment, may I submit to you the list of things that I pulled out of my car when I cleaned it out last week, just a few days shy of Labor Day weekend ? The last time I cleaned out my car in this fashion was shortly before my family left for Lake George in early July. So, basically, what I pulled out of my car is the accumulated *Life Shrapnel* of Summer 2011 from roughly the 4th of July to Labor Day. The extent of what I pulled out of my car was so eclectic and it amused me so much that I wrote it all down, took pictures of it, and turned it into a blog post. Mind you, there is a perfectly logical explanation for each and every item, but it’s much funnier if I provide no explanation and just give you the list and let you decide :) Enjoy!


Contents of my Car at Summer's End, 2011

-          Novel *The Historian* by Elizabeth Kostova

-          One Blue Umbrella with curved wooden handle

-          One wooden sword

-          One black camisole

-          Three posters for *The Two Gentleman of Verona*

-          One handwritten “TO DO” List from the 1st week of August

-          Takeout menu from Dorian’s Pizza on Westcott Street

-          Printout  of Sonnet #18 by William Shakespeare

-          Printout of the lyrics to *Garner’s Gay*, an English Madrigal

-          Teacher Binder for  Summer K.I.D.S. Shakespeare Camp 2011

-          Book *Haunted Britain and Ireland*

-          6 handbill-sized posters for *The Two Gentleman of Verona*

-          One Bon Appetit Magazine

-          One Black Syracuse Shakespeare Festival T-shirt

-          three men’s black athletic socks

-          two men’s white athletic socks

-          Innumerable receipts

-          Dunkin Donuts bag with the phone number of a wedding planner scribbled on the back

-          One black belt

-          Novel *Vittorio the Vampire* by Anne Rice

-          One black bra

-          One pair of pink and brown crocs

-          One pair of brown Mary-Jane shoes

-          One reversible, fully boned corset, brown corduroy on one side, cream-striped damask on the other

-          One gold-colored underskirt

-          One green Celtic style dress with blue-lined sleeves

-          One pair of jeans

-          One Syracuse Shakespeare Festival canvas bag

-          One floor-length red wool cloak with hood

-          Makeup bag

-          One decorative candle in glass votive holder

-          One small trophy shaped like a cowboy boot

-          One recipe for Roasted Peach Cupcakes with Vanilla Buttercream Frosting

-          Scotch Tape

-          One program from *The Two Gentleman of Verona*

-          One script from *The Two Gentleman of Verona*

-          One script for *Othello*

-          One large woven straw basket

-          One pewter mug

-          Blue sleeve ribbons that attach to aforementioned green/blue dress

-          Two pairs of hair sticks

-          One blue queen-sized flat bed sheet

-          One woven straw fan

-          One carved wooden wand with holster and shoulder strap

-          Lots of napkins

-          Sunblock

-          Small plastic bags

-          One leather belt strap

-          Broken beaded chain belt

-          One jeweled headband

-          Four maps/guides to the Sterling Renaissance Festival

-          Brochure for Somewhere Beyond Coin Mint

-          Chapstick

-          One tooled leather belt

-          One recipe for Garlic and Cheese Crostini

-          One pink and brown floor-length floral skirt

-          One *Every Day with Rachael Ray* Magazine

-          Two travel cases of c.d.’s


I think that pretty much speaks for itself :)

Love Ya'll,
Lynn :)


Tuesday, September 6, 2011

Simple Pleasures: September 6th

- hearing some honking geese as they flew over my building today

- Stephanie making me gnocchi for lunch at her house :)

- finding out that Twinings makes a naturally decaffeinated version of Irish Breakfast Tea :) (NOM)

Love,
Lynn

Monday, September 5, 2011

Simple Pleasures: September 5th

- Sleeping in on a Monday ( and finding it ironic/interesting that since I returned to working full time, I now consider 8:30 am to be *sleeping in*)

-making perfectly cooked fried eggs and toast for breakfast for Mikey and I :) (I have discovered the secret!!! You turn the flame up high to warm the pan, but as soon as the eggs hit the pan, you turn the heat down low so they cook evenly :)

- My first attempt at making and canning Peach Butter was a success!!! It took longer than I thought to reach the correct consistency, and it yielded a smaller quantity than I was planning on, so I'll have to make more next week, but the flavor was PERFECT! There will be a food blog post about this very soon, as well as a post for the fresh corn salad I made a few days ago for the Engagement/Anniversary/Birthday Party

- Going out to our favorite sit-down Chinese Restaurant  with siblings, parents and grandparents, followed by Apple Pie and ice cream at grandparent's house.

- Going through the totes of stuff I have stored at my grandparent's house with Mikey and realizing that someday soon we will have a home of our own :)


Love Ya'll,
Lynn



Sunday, September 4, 2011

Simple Pleasures: September 4th

- Had homemade chocolate pudding for breakfast (along with a peach and zucchini bread, but the pudding was the important part:)

- Had homemade zucchini parmesan for lunch (along with more chocolate pudding :)

- went for a lovely swim in the pool on this ridiculously muggy day :)

- got to watch *Titanic* today. I've always loved it and I haven't seen it in ages. That movie is so beautiful, breathtakingly filmed, amazing costumes, music, color saturation, cinematography, it's touching and heartbreaking....I get so incredibly wrapped up in it, it's one of those films that totally removes me from my immediate surroundings and completely pulls me into its world....

Love Ya'll,
Lynn





Simple Pleasures, September 3rd

- going to the Farmer's Market with Mama. Buying peaches, corn, cinnamon rolls, fresh bread, chocolate milk from Pittsford Dairy (*swoon!*) sunflowers, and other such goodies :)

- Combined Engagement Party/Grandparent's 62nd Wedding Anniversary (wowza!) Party/Grandfather's BirthdayParty goin' down at the Barbato House today :)

-(picking this up Sunday morning because I was too tired to finish it last night) Awesome party yesterday :)

- I know some people would probably be pissed about this, but I honestly found it hilarious. We ordered a cake for the party yesterday from a local bakery, their donuts are OUT OF THIS WORLD DELICIOUS, but we had never ordered a cake from them, so, in the name of possible wedding cake research, we gave it a shot. I went to pick it up, gave it a cursory glance in the bakery, paid, and walked out to my car. However, as I was leaving, something was tickling my brain about the cake, so I opened up the box again. The writing (which was supposed to read simply *Congratulations Lynn and Michael*) was sloppy and slapdash, and crooked across the cake. *Congratulations* was spelled incorrectly, and was off-center and it was written in big, loopy letters on the left side of the cake and in tiny cramped letters on the right side, and whoever had iced the cake had run out of room for the "S", so, the cake read "Congralulation". KNowing that we didn't have time to have it fixed or order a replacement, I just brought it home. It tasted fine, but as we were cutting into it, we realized that part of the cake had crumbled, and they had mushed it back together and covered it with frosting!!! Again, rather than being pissed, we let it go, had a good laugh about it, and chalked it up to experience :)

- Received several lovely Engagement gifts, one of the most touching was my paternal grandmother giving me the garter she wore on her wedding day, 62 years ago (yesterday 9/3) to be one of my something's old, and one of my something's blue. I was so incredibly touched. We both cried, it was a beautiful moment :)

- Several of the other ladies who are participating in this challenge had really bad days yesterday, I'm so sorry to hear it and I'm thinking about you all :) There's a geeky, frizzy haired, big nosed Italian girl who thinks you all are the coolest thing ever, I love the pants off all of you :)

Love,
Lynn









Saturday, September 3, 2011

September's Simple Pleasures: September 2nd

- had to come into work early today, but I got to see the sunrise, and I wasn't anywhere near tired as I thought I would be.

- Work is so deliciously quiet and peaceful in the early morning :)

- Tonight we're going to look at the other finalist for location for our wedding reception next year, I'm excited to go back and I'll be glad when we've made a decision and the other more fun and creative parts of planning our wedding can start :)

- finding out that one of the Bloggers I follow loves Anne of Green Gables as much as I do, and learning a recipe for raspberry cordial from said blog :) Can't wait to try it out :)

-sitting down at the River Walk in B'ville on my lunch break :)

*smiles*

Lynn

Thursday, September 1, 2011

The Adventure Continues!!!

Hello My Darlings!

     I've missed you all so much!!!  Blogging during the summer months is always a challenge, and this Summer was no different. After returning from Lake George in early July (which was around the time of my last post) we had a small family emergency (everything is fine now, Thank God), I taught a week-long Summer Shakespeare Camp for The Syracuse Shakespeare Festival, was in rehearsals and performance for The Two Gentleman of Verona, auditioned for, was cast in, and began rehearsals for Othello, was spending pretty much every weekend I could at The Sterling Renaissance Festival, started a new full-time job, and was otherwise out and about enjoying the gorgeous summer in every way I could while it lasts :) However, the most notable event of the Summer occurred on July 24th, when a new page was turned and the seeds were planted for our next great adventure :)

MICHAEL PROPOSED!!! WE ARE ENGAGED!!!!!

I created a website for the Proposal photos via Shutterfly, feel free to peruse and enjoy them here :)
      
     Michael proposed to me in the glen behind the Glass-Blowing booth at Sterling, in the same area where we had our first kiss and where we first said "I Love You". The weather was perfect, our Minstrel friends Merlyn and Harry (aka Merry Mischief) were there and played several songs for us (thank you so much!) Our parents, his brother and sister-in-law and their infant daughter (our niece!), and several of our friends from both the 'Shire and the outside world were there to witness it, and it was absolutely perfect :) It was wonderful to share that moment with some of our loved ones and yet the intimacy of the monet was not lost :) I must admit, I had suspected that Michael would propose to me at Sterling, but the exact when and where were a mystery. Of course, in the moment I was so overwhelmed and happy that even if I had known about it all along, it would have all been wiped away and I would still have been surprised :) I found out later that virtually everyone at Sterling and most of our family and friends were in on the surprise, some had known for months beforehand, and I'm astounded and touched that that many people were to keep the secret for that long :)

The outpouring of love that Michael and I have received these last few weeks has been beyond words. We love you all so very much and we thank you a million times over for everything!!! I am the happeist and the luckiest girl in the wide world and we cannot wait to be married!!!

Sterling has ended (*sniff!*) Two Gents has closed and Summer is winding down. And while I am never happy to see Summer go, I eagerly greet the transition into Autumn, which has palates and joys all it's own :) I'm so happy to be blogging again!  As a matter of fact, I'm starting another 30 Day Blogging Challenge, at the suggestion of my wonderful friend, Nubby :) In her words, it's "an exercise in time management and appreciating the little things", and reinforcing the fact that even if I have a crappy day (had several of those, lately, but I'm learning to rise above), I am in charge of whether or not the day is a total loss, I can make a bad day better, and I CAN appreciate the little things in life, because, in the end, they matter the most:) If you're a blogger type person and you want to join in, by all means, join us :)



 Simple Pleasures of Today:
-After weeks of being insanely busy, and countless infuriating technological roadblocks, I was finally able to post our Proposal photos and get back to my blog :)

- I had Cinnamon Raisin Toast from the Oswego Tea Company for lunch today :)

- I got a good news e-mail that I had been waiting for

- I have rehearsal tonight for Othello :)

-  There is a full-size refrigerator in the break room where I work, which means I can keep healthy breakfast food and healthy snacks here :)
Yay!!!
I'm so glad to be back, see you tomorrow :)
Love,
Lynn



Monday, July 11, 2011

The Home Stretch: The Bodice Challenge Days 33-36 and Reflection

Sorry for the delay in the posting of the last few days of The Bodice Challenge, I've been going literally nonstop since I got back from Lake George, and this is the first chance I've had to sit down at the computer for longer than about two minutes. In summary, Lake George was lovely, the weather was pretty darn near perfect, lots of sun and water and sand and boating and relaxing, exactly what I needed to fortify for all the crazy waiting for me when I got back. After Monday I stopped taking my blood pressure, because I was on vacation, but it is absolutely a good habit and one that I want to maintain, so I'm going to continue taking my blood pressure at least a few times a week, I may or may not post it here, but I will keep a record of it. Anyway, here's the tally, minus blood pressure, for the last few days of the Challenge:

Tuesday, Day 33: Breakfast: Cinnamon Chex and Skim Milk
              Lunch: Plain Bagel with whipped cream cheese and fresh fruit
              Dinner: Grilled Chicken with salt potatoes (with just a tiny scrape of butter), salad with O & V, no cheese
              Dessert: Small dish of ice cream
              Exercise: Lots of swimming
              Creativity: Going through an AWESOME cookbook of my grandmother's entitled America's Best Lost Recipes , and copied down many that I can't wait to try!!!

Wednesday, Day 34:
                   Breakfast: went out to breakfast at a local diner, had a small portion of stuffed french toast with cream cheese and blueberries (NOM, yes, this sounds like a splurge, but it was a very small serving size, and quite filling, no seconds)
                   Lunch: Homemade Chex Mix and fruit
                   Dinner: Spiedies ( marinated beef kebabs), Sauteed Sugar Snap Peas
                   Dessert small dish of ice cream
                   Exercise: Lots of Swimming, also went Tubing, THIS IS A HUGE WORKOUT, my upper body was sore for four days!!! Lots of fun, though!!!
                   Creativity: Starting sewing the silver chainwork onto Michael's privateer garb for Faire :)

Thursday, Day 35:
                Breakfast: Cinnamon Chex with Skim Milk
                Lunch: Turkey Sandwich on Kaiser Roll, light scrape mayo, lettuce, one slice bacon, no cheese, fresh cherries
                Dinner: Went out to dinner to a PHENOMENAL Turkish Restaurant in Lake George Village called Ali Baba's Express I had dolmades, yogurt sauce, lavash bread, and a lamb gyro :)
                Dessert: Kiddie-size cup of gelato
                Exercise: Lots of swimming and walking around LG Village
                Creativity: More work on Mikey's garb vest

 Friday, Day 36, Closing Day of The Bodice Challenge:
                Breakfast: Cinnamon Chex with skim milk
                Lunch: Leftover Gyro from the night before, Chex Mix and fresh cherries
                Dinner: One hamburger, plain, no mayo, no cheese, sauteed zucchini and summer squash
                Dessert: One small dish of ice cream
                Exercise: Lots of swimming
                Creativity: More work on Mikey's garb vest

In review: I am very glad I did this :) It kept me focused and made me look at my food and health priorities. As I've lamented in earlier posts, I really did not lose any weight or inches, and only lost about 1% of my body fat, however, looking over my blood pressure trends over the past few weeks, it has greatly improved, and I feel much better and I have much more energy. And, the flip side of not losing any weight is that I also did not GAIN any weight, not even last week while I was on vacation, and that is certainly not to be ignored or belittled. So, those things in and of themselves made the challenge absolutely worth it. However, the frosting on the cake was that yesterday, my first day at Sterling for the season, I looked damn good in my corset and handled the hilly terrain of the 'Shire like a pro, which was the original point of the exercise to begin with, so I'd say that portion of the experiment was a huge success :)

What will happen from here? I'm not 100% sure. I want to keep my portions reasonable, and continue to focus on at least moderate daily exercise, whole grains, fruits and veggies and all that other good stuff, but I don't have a specific plan in place. For quite awhile last year I followed The Blood Type Diet, and I lost quite a bit of weight and felt GREAT, but the BTD, while healthful, can be a hassle to follow long-term, so the jury's still out on whether I'll give that another try. I tend not to do well on plans that force you to count calories and other such forms of counting, as they make me feel bitter and deprived. As I've said before, I refuse to nickel and dime my food. If you look at food as merely a numbers game, you have, in my book, missed the whole darned point. However, portion control, exercise and more healthful food choices? That I know I can do, so that's where we'll leave it for now :) What methods of weight loss have worked for you all? I'd love to hear about them :) I've heard good things about the Livestrong/MyPlate program, anyone else have two cents they'd like to throw in? Thanks again to Merlyn for starting this challenge and for being a daily inspiration to me :)

Love,
Lynn

Tuesday, July 5, 2011

Bodice Challenge on the Road: Days 30, 31, and 32

Greeting, My Lovelies :)

I'm taking a brief sojurn to the Bolton Free Library for a brief check-in :) So far, my Lake George week has been lovely, a welcome respite indeed :) Sun and Water and time with family and old friends, just what I needed :) I'm been a twinge more gentle with myself these past few days because I am on vacation, and I'm sharing a kitchen with my extended family and I don't want to dictate what everyone else is eating, but on the whole I've still been pretty good :)

Saturday: Day 30
Blood Pressure: 118/82

Breakfast: 2 slices homemade banana bread
Lunch:  stopped at McDonald's whilst on the road up to the lake. Had a salad with chicken and low fat sesame dressing. No fries, no soda, just iced tea with no sugar.
Snack: One nectarine, one handful homemade chex mix, two chocolate covered cherries
Dinner: Three slices cheese pizza
Dessert: one small serving fat free mango sorbet at Ben &Jerry's
Exercise: 45 minute walk into town, the first 15 minutes of that walk were uphill

Sunday: Day 31
Breakfast: Muesli with fat free plain yogurt
Lunch: Two slices of Italian bread toast with Peanut Butter, two slices provolone cheese. Salad with feta, walnuts and balsamic vinaigrette
Dinner: Spaghetti with homemade sauce, three small meatballs, one slice bread, no seconds.
Dessert: small serving of ice cream at Ben and Jerry's.
Exercise: walked around town, and went for a good, long swim.
Blood Pressure: 116/84

Monday: Day 32

Breakfast: Cinnamon Chex with skim milk
Lunch: leftover spaghetti, one small bowl, no meatballs. One nectarine, one pickle, one small serving of lowfat vanilla yogurt.
Snack: One small handful homemade chex mix, two twizzlers, one handful fresh cherries.
Dinner: Steak, 3 slices of Italian bread, sauteed spinach and rice pilaf
Dessert: Three s'mores minus the graham crackers (in other words, three toasted marshmallows and three small pieces of chocolate)
Exercise: went swimming twice, and went for a twenty minute kayak excursion :)

I'll probably check in again on Friday, I hope you all had a lovely Fourth of July, see you soon!!!!

Love,
Lynn

Friday, July 1, 2011

The Bodice Challenge: Day 29

Breakfast: a few spoonfuls of cottage cheese and a bowl of strawberries

Morning Blood Pressure: 122/81, that's higher than I've been running lately, but I did have Chinese last night, so I'll take it again tonight and see if it improves....

Lunch: one small bran muffin, bowl of cinnamon chex with skim milk,and a few fresh cherries and a small glass of chocolate milk

Dinner: One hamburger, plain, no bun, no cheese, nothing. Some pasta salad (no mayo) and some green salad with oil and vinegar dressing.

Snack: One donut that my brother and his girlfriend brought us from a donut place they like in Buffalo

Exercise: 26 minute walk with Mikey

Creativity: Finished sewing my new garb skirt, and it turned out quite lovely :)

Evening Blood Pressure: 119/73

     Sadly, I am not having a good self-esteem day, I am very frustrated. I am very upset that even though I feel better there hasn't really been any *measurable* progress. I'm still in the same three-pound window I was when I started. I've only lost about 1% of my total body fat, and I haven't lost any inches. Other people have said that I look more toned, and I feel like I have tightened up, especially in my thighs and legs, but according to the scale and the tape measure...no change (although, to be fair, I didn't measure my thighs at the beginning of the challenge, just my waist and hips, maybe all the inches are being lost from there?). I'm sorry, but this irritates the hell out of me. I've been very diligent for a straight month, better food choices, daily exercise, etc. So do I feel better? Absolutely, and my blood pressure has improved also, and both of those things are very valuable and I'm not discounting them. However, I want tangible results that can be pointed to.....I felt better for about 20 minutes this afternoon when I tried on my new skirt that I just finished sewing. I put on a chemise and a corset and put my hair up, and I felt beautiful, striking, and sexy, all the things I normally feel when I'm in garb. And then I took my garb off and put my regular clothes back on and I felt lousy again. I know that everyone has their down days, and that's just life, but today all I can see are the imperfections.....I want today to be over so I can try again tomorrow.....

   On a brighter note, tomorrow I will be leaving for my family's annual trip to Lake George in the Adirondacks. We'll be there all week and I can't wait :) My internet access up at the Lake is sporadic at best, so I won't be posting every day, but I'll try to check in every few days or so. I give you my word I will catalog everything that I eat and my daily exercise, just like I do here, and I won't slack off in the home stretch just because I won't be posting every day. Send me all the vibes you can spare, and I'll be sending them to all of you!!! To all my Sterling folk, I'll see you in just a few days!!!

Love,
Lynn

Thursday, June 30, 2011

The Bodice Challenge: Day 28

Breakfast: Cinnamon Chex with skim milk and small glass of orange juice (and I actually remembered to take my vitamins today, wheee!)

Lunch: two small, thin slices of leftover veggie pizza, one brown rice cake and a few cherries

Dinner: 6 steamed dumplings with dipping sauce, about half of a small order of beef lo mein, and a fortune cookie.

Evening snack: several small homemade brownies.

Creativity: got a lot of good good work done on a new skirt for Faire :) All I have to finish now is the waistband and the hem :)

Exercise: Walked around the market and swept and cleaned out the workshop space for my *Shakespeare Camp* that starts after I get back from vacation :) Also, I treated myself to a pedicure today, which, while not exercise, is good self-care :)

I'm sorry, I forgot to take my blood pressure again. My blood pressure cuff shares an outlet with my cell phone charger, and sometimes I forget to switch the plugs, I apologize...

Love,
Lynn

The Bodice Challenge: Day 27

Breakfast: Gluten Free Cinnamon Chex with skim milk, met with my co-teacher for a lesson plan once-over for my summer Shakespeare Workshop, had a medium chai latte with skim milk

Lunch: Last two pieces of pizza from yesterday's dinner and a small bowl of strawberries, and a Nutra-Grain Bar

Afternoon snack: While driving to Rochester yesterday afternoon, my blood sugar plummeted. I had eaten lunch, so I was surprised when my stomach cramped up and I started to shake and sweat. I used to be prone to hypoglycemia when I was younger, and it's mostly allyed now, but every once in awhile it pops up. I hung on until the nearest rest stop. I pulled in to a Dunkin Dounts and had a lowfat chocolate milk, a plain donut and a croissant. This leveled me out pretty well :)

Dinner: Went to a Pure Romance Party hosted my a friend of mine for another friend who has just started as a Pure Romance consultant. Pure Romance sells lotions, body oils, scents , lingeries, and.....ahem....romance products ;). We ordered takeout from a local greek restuarant before the party,I had a Greek Salad with gyro meat, and split an order of hummus and dolmades with a friend. At the party, I had some strawberries stuffed with marscarpone cheese, a few pear tartlets, a few small pieces of white and dark chocolate, and about half a glass of blush wine. Btw, I had a fabulous time, and if you live in the greater central/western NY area and want to book a party or look at the Pure Romance products, may I please direct you to my dear friend Allison's Pure Romance website?

Exercise: 34 minute walk

Creativity:  Aforementioned productive and creative meeting with my co-teacher for our K.I.D.S. Doing Shakespeare Camp in July :)

Love,
Lynn

Wednesday, June 29, 2011

The Bodice Challenge: Day 26

Breakfast: Fat-free raspberry yogurt

Lunch: One sunny-side up egg and two slices Italian bread toast with a small scrape of butter and a handful of fresh cherries :)

Dinner: personal sized pizza at Unos with dried figs, roasted tomoatoes, goat cheese, pesto and a drizzle of balsamic vinegar (NONOMNOMNOMNOM!!!!) I didn't finish it, brought some leftovers home :) Also, a side salad with walnuts, goat cheese and lemon vinaigrette.

Evening Snack: Homemade chocolate Egg Cream (which contains neither eggs nor cream) it's milk and seltzer water with a drizzle of chocolate syrup NOMNOMNOM :)

Exercise: Weeded around the pool and one of the flower gardens in my backyard, lots of errand-related walking...

Forgot to take blood pressure in the a.m. and was out of the house most of the day, apologies...

Love,
Lynn

Monday, June 27, 2011

The Bodice Challenge: Day 25

Breakfast: 1% whipped cottage cheese and fresh strawberries

Lunch: We went to my grandmother's house, and she had just made vanilla cupcakes with chocolate frosting.  Yeah, I'd love to tell you I didn't have any, but I had three. However, they were small, about the size of a small muffin. When I got home, I had a brown rice cake.

Dinner: Linguine with homemade pesto and grilled asparagus mixed in :) One plateful, no seconds...

Evening Snack: Ovaltine with skim milk

Creativity: More productive than creative. Got all of my photos and documents and suchlike off of my old desktop and backed them up on my new external hard drive. Got the computer dismantled and brought down to the car. Tomorrow it's going to Best Buy along with my old, old, computer, hopefully I can get at least a few dollars in trade-in value for them. Once the new job starts and I have a few decent paychecks under my belt, I'll be upgrading to a new laptop as well.

Also, the last two days have brought several miracles for Mikey :) A new cosigner has surprisingly and graciously volunteered to cosign his Sallie Mae Loan, and, at the last minute , OSTM decided to grant him an extension on getting his loan materials in, and will still allow him to start in July!!!!! WAHOOOOOO!!!! Thank GOD!!! Today was a flurry of getting everything together in time, and we're cautiously optimistic :)

Exercise: 33 minute walk with Mikey :)

Blood Pressure: 115/75

The Bodice Challenge: Days 23 and 24

Saturday: Was visiting a dear friend and his family for the day :)

Breakfast: one slice of cinnamon raisin bread toast with a small scrape of butter

Lunch: Honey Bunches of Oats with Pecans and Almond Milk

Afternoon Snack: Chips and Ranch Dip

Dinner: Small fried fish filet, homemade tartar sauce, and a few steal fries

Dessert: Klondike Bar (YES, I did promise to swear off ice cream until next weekend, but my hostess offered me one and I said yes before I remembered that I had committed to an ice-cream free week. So, I ate it. It was an honest accident, so I'm not going to beat myself up about it)

Creativity: Recipe trading and cooking :)

Exercise: 25 minute walk

Blood Pressure:  117/77


Sunday: Drove down to Astoria to get my brother, who is moving home for the summer and possibly permanently. Spent a lot of time in the car, (10 out of 13 hours), but it's always nice to get a few hours in the city :)

Breakfast: Special K with skim milk and blueberries

Lunch: two slices of cheese pizza and two mild buffalo wings

Dinner: Two slices of Italian bread toast with butter, 1% whipped cottage cheese and fresh  strawberries

Exercise: OMG, did I get my fair share of exercise....there was a street fair on Ditmars Blvd between 35th and 36th street, which is right in front of where my brother lives, so the street was blocked off. We had to park two blocks over and four blocks down, so, basically, 6 blocks away. We parked the car and walked 6 blocks up to my brother's apartment, up the stairs, got an armload of stuff, and walked 6 blocks back to the car. We did this three times. So, I walked the equivalent of 36 city blocks yesterday, half of those times carrying suitcases, duffel bags, boxes, etc. And let me tell you, I am FEELING it today. I'm sore from neck to ankles. But, in the grand scheme of things, it wasn't too bad. It wasn't raining, it wasn't ungodly hot, and we weren't carrying super-heavy things like tv's and furniture, etc. So yeah, I EARNED those two pieces of pizza....

Creativity: More productive than creative, see above :)

Blood Pressure: 113/77

Love,
Lynn

Friday, June 24, 2011

The Bodice Challenge: Day 22

Blood Pressure: 118/77

Breakfast: Special K and skim milk

Lunch: Tuna Salad wrap (lite on the mayo) with lettuce and onion, no cheese. Side of mixed fruit, a few spoonfuls of 1% cottage cheese

Dinner: Split a fish dinner with Mikey . Half of a breaded fried haddock filet, a little tartar sauce and half of a medium-sized order of french fries...

Evening Snack: Dish of chocolate ice cream, my LAST until I go to Lake George a week from tomorrow (can't wait)

Exercise: About a 10 minute walk this morning, and two 15 minute walks this afternoon, my house to the grocery store and back

Creativity: More productive than creative. Went to my new job today to meet my supervisor and learn more about the position. I will be working in Client Services and Marketing for an ambulance billing company :) Everyone has been extremely nice so far, and this job has something I have never had before: BENEFITS!!!! I CAN GET OFF MEDICAID, WOOOOOOOO!!!!!!

On the downside, my poor Michael has suffered a real disappointment today :( He was all accepted and ready to go to Massage School and start classes July 1st, when, due to circumstances completely out of his control, his financial aid was unable to be processed and approved in time for him to start classes in July. His acceptance has been deferred, and he can begin in September or January, so all is not lost, but he has worked very hard to get everything in order on his end and a setback like this is extremely frustrating and upsetting. It's so frustrating when life kicks you when you're already down, but we are going to make the best of it.

Love,
Lynn

Thursday, June 23, 2011

The Bodice Challenge: Day 21

Blood Pressure: 117/72 wahooo!!!

Breakfast: Special K with skim milk and blueberries sprinkled on top

Lunch: Almond-rice crackers with yogurt cheese and strawberries

Dinner: One brown rice cake with garlic hummus, green apple with 2 small slices of cheddar cheese

Snack:  Dish of ice cream (I'll be going on an ice cream fast next week in prep for our week at Lake George, where the Ben and Jerry's Scoop Shop lives:)

Creativity: New Food Blog Post :)

Exercise: 40 minute walk with Mama, we would have walked longer but it started to thunder and lightning, so we came home.

In other news, I got my haircut today, nothing drastic, just a good trim, but, on a whim, I asked the hairdresser to blow dry my hair out straight, just to see what it looked like. My hair is very curly, and that's the way I normally wear it, but I was curious to see how I might look with straight hair. It looks good, very.....1970's...sleek and smooth :) I still prefer it curly, which is what it naturally does, but this was a fun little experiment :)

Also, I think it's true what they say in that it takes 30 days to form or break a habit. I'm coming up on three-week mark of The Bodice Challenge, and it's starting to feel like something is missing from my day if I don't exercise in some form :) So, yay for healthy habits :)

Love,
Lynn