Tuesday, June 17, 2008

A Closer Look~photo meme

Be afraid, be very afraid.

If my tell-all Isagenix thing didn't make you lose all respect, this one just might because though I really tried to do this when everything was clean, I gave up and just did it. So you see me, and my home, in all it's loveliness. Sandra tagged me for this one, and I found it a lot of fun to see hers, so I'm giving it a whirl.

1. My Kitchen sink:

That big brown spot is from when I was burning some butter and so I, brilliantly, poured it down the sink and it burned my sink. I've bleached, scrubbed, sanded it and it refuses to let me off the hook. I know, not everyone is blessed with such intelligence. It's a rare gift. I thought it was cute that both Sandra and I have cutsy bottles for our dish soap. Great minds think alike--I mean no disrespect to Sandra in that, I swear.

2. Inside my Fridge:

Sandra and I both also have milkmen; I'm completely ruined when it comes to milk because I get mine from a dairy. Total milk snob, that's me. As you can see I have a lot of leftover and I like Tupperware. My mother used to use old sour cream containers, made me nuts when I was actually looking for sour cream and coudln't find any even though we had eight containers in the fridge.

3. My Favorite Shoes:

This was easy, it's my Dansko clogs. My sister raved about them for years before I finally wore her pair for a day. I fell head over heels (no pun intended) in love with them and wear them a lot. Now that it's summer, I don't so much cause they look funny with my skinny ankles, but with long pants this will be my shoe most of the time. I bought them with my first Deseret Book Royalty check Love em!

4. My Closet:

It's long, but narrow. See that bowling ball on the floor at the end, yeah, if only you were lucky enough to have won an 18 pound undrilled bowling ball replica of the very ball that won the 2006 bowling national championship. You wish!

5. The Laundry Pile:

The pile in the lower left hand corner of the photo is actually clean laundry and it hasn't been there 24 hours yet so we're good! The basket holds socks, which I need to pair together via a movie this afternoon. We go out of town on Thursday so I've been getting lots of wash done. I really like my laundry room and I don't really mind doing laundry either. I hang everything that requires shoulders. Only pants, shorts, underwear, and PJs go in drawers, so I hang as I sort, then we don't have wrinkled shirts and I don't have to fold as much stuff. Takes lots of hangers though.

6. What my kids are doing right now:

#4--playing with the new puppy. (did I not mention we got a new puppy? More on that in another blog--basically we're nuts) And no, that's not blood on him, it's paint. We like to paint our livestock, it's kind of a hazing thing.

#3--Watching Spongebob

#2 & #1 painting the playhouse. The one on the ground is actually not mine, she's a freind that somehow got suckered into helping, and #1 is actually inside the playhouse but I didn't have time to wait around for a posed shot.

7. My Favorite Room:

I wish I said my study, or my living room with the LaZboy, but my favorite room really is my kitchen. I love to cook, I love the way my kitchen is set up. It's big, it's open, and I love the way it looks out into the backyard and yet still lets me watch TV. I prefer it when it's a little cleaner than this, but still.

8. My Most Recent Purchase:

I'm assuming it's supposed to be something I bought for myself? If so, it's these running shoes. They have pink on them and do not at all match my cute running outfit that I bought because it matched my old shoes. So sad. But they are comfy and I don't have to wear my inserts, which is awesome. I do have a jacket that matches them--thank goodness. So if I had to go anywhere with them on I could make it work. I have a thing about matching my shoes to my shirt, and yet I really don't like owning a lot of shoes, it makes me feel wasteful. It's why I don't get very creative with the colors I wear--or at least it's one reason.

9. My Fantasy Vacation:

This is an easy one, and I'm lucky enough to have already been and get to go again. My husband and I absolutely adore Costa Rica. We've been able to go a few times and at the end of the week we're taking all four of our kids. I hope I still like it with kids in tow. If you've read much of my blog you already know this about me.

10. Self-portrait:

Did I mention you should be afraid. Really, it's summer, I haven't even thought about make-up today and I usually keep my hair pulled way up on my head so I don't get hot until I have to do it for the day--which I don't think I have to do at all today. But anyway, it is what it is.

And I'm gunna tag, Karlene and Stephanie Humphries. Can't wait to see what you got, girls.

Saturday, June 14, 2008

Isagenix~Day 15...

So I've been doing the Isagenix thing for 15 days now and I finished my second part of the 9 day cleanse yesturday. Here is my report, be aware that I'm dealing with ALL aspects of cleansing and diet plans--so I hope I don't embarrass anyone:

Shake Days: Replacing 2 meals with the Isalean shakes. These work good for me. I've tried a variety of fruits in the shakes and I like that, even though it does add calories. I usually do this for breakfast and lunch, then have dinner with my family. This works good for me and because I'm looking forward to dinner I have been cooking better, more balanced, meals for my family as opposed to my one-pan-wonders that I usually go for. I don't stick to the recommended 400-600 calorie meal, I just eat until I'm satisfied.

Cleanse Days: drinking 4 oz. of the Isacleanse juice four times a day. No shakes, no food aside from a few acceptable things. I hate these days and I will not cleanse again. I am tired, hungry, no energy, irritable, and the juice makes me nauseated. I finished the last two days yesterday and I couldn't hack it and had spaghetti for dinner last night. It's cruel and unusual punishment to be cooking for my family and unable to eat any of it. These last two days were better than the first set because the first time I was trying not to eat anything at all. This time I ate all the 'allowed' items each day, which kept me going and helped me recover from the nausea. I did lose weight, and I'm glad for that, but since that wasn't my main objective it is not motivation enough for me to do it again. There is a program where you do a cleanse day once a week, and if I decide I want to take more weight off I might to that--the first day wasn't too bad--but at this point I would be thrilled to never have that nasty Isacleanse juice again.

Balance: This was my main reason for doing this program, to find a better balance of my emotions. I found myself continually irritable, lethargic, pessimistic and unable to deal with stress. I'd constantly look forward to bed time, I wanted to be alone as often as possible and just had this overall feeling of "I can't deal with this!". After two weeks I feel more positive, I am not as irritable and I handle stress better. I've got more energy which allows me to keep up with the kids and the house better, which makes me feel better too (I dusted my bedroom for the first time in 3 months!) I'm not convinced that part of this is the psychological effect of having invested in something I want to work, but whatever the deep rooted reasons I've found some of that balance I'm looking for and am so relieved.

Snacking: I've always been a 'grazer' eating a handful of this and that and the other all day. I still have moments when I want to just eat something, but the Isasnacks take care of that. My freind calls them Scooby Snacks :-). When I feel the need to snack I eat one of them, then go do something like fold a load of laundry. Nearly 100% of the time I forget about eating by the time I'm done. It's really just crazy weird to me because it's so different than I've ever been. That alone probably has more to do with the weight loss than anything else--I'm not taking in those extra 400 calories worth of 'handfuls' throughout the day. I do get really hungry around 5:00 which is too early for our dinner. I've found that a hard boiled egg or an apple along with another snack takes care of it. Really, this is impressive for me.

Sugar: I've always been a sugar freak, in fact a few years ago, for health reasons, I went off sugar and honestly I think I went into withdrawals--I was shaky and couldn't think clearly. It lasted two weeks, my health stuff didn't seem affected, and so I went back to it. I know that sugar makes you want more sugar, I know it throws off blood sugar levels and alters your metabolic chemistries. I've known this stuff for years, but I could hardly go a day without something sweet and often baked cookies or brownies or something every afternoon--then ate it all the rest of the day. I'm shocked that I no longer have a craving for sugar, I don't need it. I cooked my first dessert in two weeks last night. It was for a family thing I now can't go to because #4 was throwing up last night, so I took a piece off the pan this morning. I ate it after my shake even though I wasn't hungry because I knew my other kids would eat it when they got up if I didn't eat it quick. It was good, but one piece was enough and I'm not planning to have any more sugar today. Julie Wright told me that her husband used to be a sugar addict and someone told them Chromium helps take that away. I checked the ingredients and the shakes and snacks are both loaded with chromium, so maybe that's part of it. Whatever it is, I am so grateful. I'm sure not having constant sugar is part of my finding the balance as well, but it's so nice to stand in the checkout line at the grocery store and not be fighting with myself about buying a candy bar.

Gas (It's part of life, people, please don't lose all respect for me:-): I wouldn't say I was a gassy person before the shakes, but I certainly had my moments and once or twice a week I would have a painful gas attack (for me and everyone else). I was in the process of trying to figure out what was causing all this when I started the program. I realized just a few days ago that I have not had gas issues since this started--not at all. I told my hubby that and he now worries I'm going to force him onto the program just for that reason--but that's a whole other blog.

Regularity (see the gas disclaimer): They have these Isaflush tablets you take at night, and they have helped keep me very regular. No constipation or diarrhea, just nice regularity. I wouldn't say I had big problems in that area, but I don't think I've been this regular for a long time either.

Exercise: I have been running semi-regular for about a month. Dropping the doghouse on my toe threw me off, but I'd say I do 45 minutes of cardio 2-3 times a week, in addition to my other daily activities which have increased because of 1) more energy 2) needing distraction from the kitchen. I realize I should really step it up and be MORE consistent and really look for the ultimate benefits I can get from this program, but I haven't yet. I was glad to see that I didn't get wiped out when I exercised, I worried that I would, and I feel good when I finish. I haven't seen anything 'amazing' but neither has the program had an adverse effect on my exercise schedule.

Weight: According to the chart I've been keeping, I've lost exactly 10 pounds. Now, that's not to be perfectly trusted because I did my 'before' weight at night and my 'after' in the morning. But even if you cut that in half, it means I've lost five pounds and that's awesome. A few of my pants now need belts, and some of the shirts that were too tight around the tummy and therefore uncomfortable to wear, are now fine. So I'm quite happy with that. Since day 1 of the cleanse, and today, after it was over, I lost 1.8 pounds, and both those weights were done in the morning, that's pretty good for 9 days.

Inches: I've lost a total of 10.5 inches from those first measurements, including and impressive 3 inches around my waist as well as an inch on each thigh and 1.5 from my backside. I'm very happy with that.

$$: The program is expensive, to get the set up for this month was $400, that included the 2 shakes a day for a month, the cleansing system, all the suppliments, a box of the Isadelights, a shaker, two flasks and the Ionix Supreme--basically the whole shebang. I didn't pay for that out of my budget, hubby gave it to me for my birthday, but next month will cost about $200 and that ones up to the budget to make room for. However, I'm not worried. I have spent a lot less on groceries these last two weeks because I'm not feeding my cravings which means it's easier than it's ever been to just walk past those things that I wanted in the past. I've been really surprised by that and I'm interested to see how it all adds up next month. I've been buying healthier snacks so that if I do get hungry it's fruit, not candy, that I go for, which means my kids are eating the healthier stuff too. I really like to cook, but instead of baking I'm cutting up vegitables.

Tips I've learned: I've made a few discoveries about myself that have been interesting. The first one is that full is full. Whether I eat a 3 egg mushroom omelet and a short stack of pancakes, or I have a chocolate banana Isalean shake, I'm full and regardless of what took me to that fullness, I'm full. I'm not 'happier' because it's omelet and pancake getting churned up in my stomach--I'm just full. So, even when I really want a tuna sandwich for lunch instead of a shake, once I've had either one I'm just full. For some reason this has been a breakthrough for me, and makes it easier for me to have the shake, knowing that in fifteen minutes I'll be full, I'll be fine, and I won't be 'missing' the tuna sandwich I didn't eat. On the reverse, if I eat the sandwich, in fifteen minutes I'll be full, I'll be fine, but I'll have eaten 150 more calories and I'll think about that. Another tip I've learned is that keeping better food around leads me to eat better. I know, rocket science, but it's true. I cook better meals, I serve fresh veggies because I HAVE fresh veggies. Amazing, huh. The third thing I've learned is that there can always be more. I realized through this that a lot of what I'd eat was because it would be 'gone' if I didn't (kinda like my dessert I had after my morning shake today). With four kids, things disappear fast. So that leftover stroganoff is in the fridge and if I don't eat it now, someone else will later. The cookies I made, if I don't eat some now, they'll be gone later. Not being driven by food cravings has helped me see that it's okay if I'm not the one that eats it, that even if it does get gobbled up I can buy more or make more if I HAVE to have some. I'm not sure why this has anything to do with Isagenix, but I've had a hard time rectifying that and now I seem to have worked it out.

Future plans: Overall I'm happy with the program. If take out the misery of the cleanse days, I'll give it an 8 on a scale of 1-10. My biggest complaint, outside of the cleanse, is that I wish it tasted better. Danyelle mentioned Herbalife and that it tastes good, I wish this was like that. I still don't like the chocolate shakes, the Isadelights (dark chocolate look-a-likes) are better if you cut them in half and suck on them rather than chewing them, but they aren't great. The Ionix Supreme (you drink 1 oz. morning and night) is also really nasty. If those things tasted better, I think it could likely be a near perfect program. I do plan to continue, and I think I'll keep doing the 2 shakes a day for July.

Tuesday, June 10, 2008

It's Galley Time!

So, I got my galleys for Her Good Name today!

Some of you might not know what galleys are so let me put on my know-it-all-cap and tell you. After a book has been accepted for publication, edited, typeset (this is where they organize the type, fonts, format, spacing, chapter headings, page numbers, yada, yada), and proofed, the author gets a final look at the manuscript. It arrives on 8 1/2 x 11 paper, but the print is as it will look on a book page, centered in the middle of the sheet of paper. It includes title page, author notes, about the author, copyright etc. So it's basically the whole book, on big paper. The author then does a final proofread of the manuscript, looking for any little things that might have been missed by the editors and typesetters.

The first time I did this I didn't expect to find anything wrong, however, I was surprised just how many little things I found. I continue to be surprised each time as I find a repeated word, a misspelling (which must be REALLY bad for me to find it) and little formating things. In truth, I don't find many, but each one surprises me, but in a good way--reminding me that editors are mere mortals like myself. The author has a couple of weeks to go through the pages--but I'm rather obsessive (don't pretend you didn't already think that about me!) and I'm planning to have them done as soon as possible. We leave on vacation in 9 days, so I'll definitely have them done by then.

Usually the galleys are printed by the publisher and mailed, but with the time crunch we decided to do an e-mail and then I printed them up--which is no biggie cause I have a laser printer and it's pretty cheap for me to print them out. I've gotten my housework caught up, forwent the shower and getting dressed part of the day (who am I kidding, I forgo those things on a regular basis) and I'm getting ready to settle in to a delightful evening of galley proofing. It's been a few months since I've read this story so I'm excited to go through it again and enjoy my own brilliance now that I'm not so sick of it that it sounds like the verbal equivalent of cornmeal mush.

It helps that my husband and child #2 are in Las Vegas where hubby is looking into a business to buy and child #4 is at a cousins house in southern Utah. They will all be back tomorrow but I've managed to get their rooms changed around (remember the tanning bed plea? It's been put into action) and followed Don's lead I defrosted my freezer yesturday (unfortunately I missed the guavalicious contest--bummer). I had a 'sensible' lunch this afternoon so dinner will be a Isagenix shake--the chocolate one is actually quite good with a banana in it--and since I don't get snacky I won't even have to think about food! I got some Bagelful's at the store yesterday and my kids think they are the bomb cause I don't often buy stuff like that (they were on sale for $2.5o instead of $4 and I had a $1 coupon) so they can have that for dinner.

Life is good, my galleys await me, and I don't cleanse again until Thursday! Oh, and per Rachelle's comments on the Her Good Name blog in regard to opting out of junk mail, I did a little research and posted the information on that blog. If you're interested in that info please head on over there.

Have a lovely day!

Friday, June 06, 2008

If you're not happy and you know it. . .

I'm not happy.

I'm very very very very not happy. And I have lots of reasons:

1) Today is the second day of my isagenix cleanse. My intake consists of 2 oz. of the Isogenix supreme guck that tastes like Blackberry Brandy mixed with BBQ sauce. Nasty. Then, four times a day I chug 4 oz. of this cleanse juice muck that tastes like fermented snow cone syrup without the sugar. I'm allowed a few 'cheats' so yesterday I combined them at dinner and had a salad made of spring greens, tomatoes, cucumbers and a hard boiled egg with lemon juice as dressing. It was the best and worst salad I've ever had in my life. I bought these special Isadelight things which are chocolates you can have to help when you feel like you're starving to death. I was very much looking forward to them and was disappointed--Annette Lyon would be appalled that they are called chocolate at all. They are really hard, bitter, dark chocolate that only makes me feel more sorry for myself. The good news, I can have 6 of those tasty morsels every day! Tomorrow I go back to shakes and I can't wait. Right now I feel sick to my stomach and tired since I didn't sleep very well all night and I honestly kept dreaming about food. The energy/mood enhancement I felt before has flushed itself along with the 70 oz of water I'm drinking every day. The ONLY reason I'm still doing this is because I did my weigh and measuring thing before I started the cleanse, and in the 5 days on the program I lost almost 7 inches (2.5 around my waist) and nearly 5 pounds (I know, I hardly believe it myself). The cleanse supposedly increases all that so I'm sticking with it but I am really not happy--did I mention that?

2) A year ago I purchased a set of digital scrapbooks--biting off way more than I could chew as usual. I finished one book--a wedding album I have wanted since the wedding and never did. I am currently working on a 2007 family album. I had some stress because I'd bought a bunch of different 'books' and you only have a year to work on them. No way was I going to use them in time. And yet I was being charged extra for the extra pages I was putting in my 2007 book. Last week my consultant went to bat for me and I will be able to use the 'credits' of the projects I won't be using toward the extra pages--all good news. So today, I woke up early and came to my husband's office where the internet is faster than home. At home it takes me FOREVER to do this digital scrapbooking, often my pages time out before they load everything up. I have to get this book done before we go on our family vacation in 2 weeks and figured I could get most of what's left finished this morning. So I get up early, chug my morning muck, and get down here to find that I need to pay for my studio things (the digital version of paper, stickers, lettering etc)--but it won't take either credit card and customer service doesn't open until 9:00. A lovely waste of my time.

3) I'm doing a yard sale with a friend tomorrow. I have cleared out a lot of closets and basement and am gearing up for the event, but I really hate yard sales. No, I don't want this stuff anymore, but do we really need to ague about the price of quilt batting? I have a fabulous memory when it comes to prices and I know I paid $8 for that batting and yet I know someone will say "Fifty cents? I'll give you a quarter". Yard sell buyers are merciless and it really ticks me off. I did promise my husband that whatever doesn't sell will go to DI--but I just wish it was over already. I haven't done one for about 10 years and the stress of all this has reminded me why that is.

4) I dropped a dog house on my toe on Saturday. It was an awful messy ordeal and I limped all weekend. I haven't gone running all week because it's still be sore. Today I put on my running shoes, although the idea of going for a run makes me dizzy in my current physical state, but I was hoping they wouldn't hurt my feet so that I could 'think' about running next week. But they hurt--they hurt bad and because I'm in the mood to whine and feel sorry for myself it's just one more thing.

Anyway--there were some questions about how long I'm doing this Isagenix thing. They have a variety of programs. What I'm doing right now is the 30 day Health and Wellness (the two shakes a day plus supplements) it's their weight loss program and some people stay on it for several months, I'm just using it as a jump start and next month I will go on their 30 day maintenance program which is one shake a day plus supplements. But in addition to the 30 day program I'm on, I chose to do a 9 day cleanse in the middle, to get even faster results. I'm glad to be losing the inches and the weight, but since I did this mostly for emotional wellness, and I'm feeling so cruddy right now, I'm not sure I should have done the 9 day cleanse. However, I'm nothing if not masochistic so I'll finish it off. After the two days I'm doing right now, I'll do 5 shake days (like I did before the cleanse) and then do two more days of this cleanse crap. I'm really looking forward to all that, as I've made abundantly clear.

Did you know you can't put a ! in the labels field on blogger--that's just lame!

Tuesday, June 03, 2008

Update--Day Five

Thanks Ali :-)

So, I'm five days into this thing and on a scale of 1-10 as far as hunger goes, I'm giving it an 8--far better than I hoped. On a scale of 1-10 on convenience I give it a 7, on a scale for taste I give it a 5. Overall I'm quite pleased with it. I've done two shakes in place of two meals and then done one meal that works best of me, usually that's dinner with my family, but yesterday I met my niece for lunch so I did a shake for dinner (and got really annoyed when my children reminded me they needed dinner at 9:00--the nerve!) I really am not hungry. That's not to say I don't want to snack, cause that's what I do, but I'm not hungry and thinking about food all the time which makes it a lot easier NOT to eat.

I was supposed to start the cleanse yesterday, but because I fasted on Fast Sunday I didn't think it would be a good thing to go on a cleanse--which means I drink this special drink but I have no food for 2 days. So I was going to start today, but I had a presentation and found out they are doing a dinner that sounded delicious (a variety of summer salads--yum!) So then I was going to start the cleanse tomorrow but the Stake is having a blood drive and because we vacation in Costa Rica sometimes I can't give blood for a year after each trip (no, it's not because I pay for sex) Soooo, I haven't given blood for years and I like to give blood, it's an important thing to do. I haven't been to Costa Rica for two years, So I can give, but I don't think I can give blood if I'm not eating. Sooooo, I think I will do the cleanse on Thursday and Friday. I'm not excited.

As to how I feel--I feel pretty good. Like I said, I feel full most of the time, and the snack thingys they have, though they don't taste good, really do curb my hunger. I haven't snacked at all until today and that's cause I went grocery shopping and the hummus was calling me. So I had a whole wheat roll with Hummus and a few bites of Mango--but other than that I've done really well which is HUGE because I am such a notorious grazer. The biggest surprise for me is that I'm not craving sugar. I'm a sugar freak, and it's not unusual for me to follow every meal with some kind of chocolate or candy or ice cream. A meal just doesn't feel complete without some sugar--and then I snack on sweet stuff all day. But I honestly haven't craved it. Tonight I had some ice cream and cookies and they were delicious, but I was completely satisfied when I finished rather than wanting more like I usually do. My moods feel a bit more level--but I'm not so sure that's not because I WANT them to be more level or because life has mellowed now that school is out or because of the Isagenix stuff. But, I feel better and I'm happy with that.

I don't think I've lost any weight. My pants might be a touch looser, but they might just need to be washed too. I mean, it's only been 5 days. I'm not sticking perfectly to the 'sensible meal of 400-600 calories' for the one meal I eat. I just eat what we're having as a family and I eat until I get full. Probably a big no-no, but it gives me a little lee-way and I think I need that for now.

So, anyway. I'm hopeful and positive so far. Today was my hardest day. It was a bit more intense, my hubby's out of town, and I was tired--and yet I still handled it pretty well. I am putting fruit with most of my shakes, which is cheating I suppose, but they taste so much better. The Vanilla shakes have cinnamon in it, so today I put in a fresh peach--DELISH! I really don't care for the chocolate shake. It's not sweet, which makes it taste kinda chalky, and the fruits I've mixed with it aren't cutting it. I thought a few scoops of vanilla ice cream and some almonds would jazz it up, but I don't think that's on the menu plan :-)

I'm getting a TON of stuff done in order to keep myself out of the kitchen and I'm all kinds of proud of myself for all the little tasks I've completed. I'm doing a yard sale on Saturday with a friend and so I'm going through all the scary closets and corners of my house to do a good thorough cleaning. It keeps my mind off the two last boxes of girl scout cookies I'm hiding in the closet (gulp!) and I do feel like I have a bit more energy--but again, that could be because May is OVER and I have more time to just be home right now instead of late for half a dozen places.

I'll let you know how the cleanse goes--I'm anxious about that--and I'll be doing a weigh in and re-measure on Saturday since I'll be 8 days into the program--so stay tuned! Thanks for the support and advice, I much appreciate it.