Monday, 13 June 2011

Dukan week 16: sometimes life gets in the way, huh?

My weight fluctuated like the stock market this week; up, down, up, down. But in the end, by Friday, I was at 81kg, so, another 500g released into the fat ether. The photo above and the two below were taken by my eldest daughter yesterday, Pentecostal Sunday, just after Church. I'm very happy my neck has slimmed down and my cheekbones are apparent now, and not hidden behind a wad of adipose tissue.
I'm trying for demure, did I pull it off?

While taking the photo, my daughter cleverly used part of the staircase to hide one hip and thigh... good girl!

So, here's the proof:
As of Friday 10 June 2011, 81kg. 
Oh happy moi!

I am having this incredible pleasure in trying on clothes, because THEY FIT ME. I know I need to firm up, I still jiggle like a bowl full of jelly (or Jell-O, for my American readers,) but it is still coming off, very very slowly, but then, the Grand Canyon wasn't created in a day, now was it? 
Nor Rome. 
Nor the current financial mess the USA finds itself in. (Oops, no Politics, sorry.)

I said this to someone today, and I think it bears repeating here. What do you want to look like next year at this time? Do you want to be closer to your ideal weight or do you really want to be where you are right now? Heh, no judgements, it is after all, your life and YOU are the one that lives it, no one else.

IF you want to lose weight because you are depressed or miserable about your appearance, then simply just begin, NOW. I mean right now, not next Monday or next weekend or next month, or when you get paid, take the first step right this instant. Then the next instant, just continue. Keep stringing the moments together and YOU WILL get where you want to go. Yes, it takes willpower. Yes you will have to face up to WHY you overeat and gained weight in the first place and NO, that will not be easy, nor will it be comfortable nor will it be over in an instant.
But time will pass, whether you want it to or not and next year will be here before you know it, so, you might as well be doing something constructive in the meantime.
YOU just need to have confidence in YOU.

Go on, do it. And then come back here and let me know how you are doing. I'll try to find a cheerleader outfit and some pom-poms and cheer you on.
Well, ok, I'll do that AFTER I firm up the thighs....

Hugs and quiches from Kitty x

Sunday, 5 June 2011

Dukan week 15 - results!

Carbs are what slap me down, big time, every time. I can easily inhale an entire warm baguette, it hardly touches the sides, a croissant is nothing but net. Seriously.

By why eat it if I don't even taste and enjoy it? Yeah, why indeed. So I just try my hardest to avoid it.

I've had good days of walking, like the other day down the canal with the girls and a close friend and her Kiki dog. Then on other days, I'll just hobble around the house, barely able to put weight on my foot the tendon is so sore and painful  I've even taken to using the crutches, occasionally. There just seems no rhyme or reason to it, one day ouch, the other, no big deal. So swings and roundabouts, I guess. Just a few more days and I see the Specialist in Saint Brieuc and find out my options. (Hopefully.)

I worked hard to keep carbs and fat down so some weight would shift. So, even though the walking was spotty, I did get the results I wanted:

81.5kg! I'm only a week or so from breaking through the 80kg barrier!

Pat on the back for that.

OK, now... let's discuss other issues, shall we? The next post I'm going to talk about what happens when you lose a LOT of weight. And what I plan on doing about that.

You will want to skip it if photos of a 50-something flabby woman might shock or scare you. :)

Hugs and quiches from Kitty.

Wednesday, 1 June 2011

Dukan week, uh, let's call it week 14

So I thought I'd go see what my BMI would be if I lost a silly amount of weight, went down to what I was in my 20's. Say, something ridiculous like... 60kg. Hahaha.

Height: 1.64 meters
Weight: 60 kilograms

Your BMI is 22.3, indicating your weight is in the Normal category for adults of your height.
For your height, a normal weight range would be from 49.8 to 67 kilograms.


Wow. Well, darn.

OK, so a bit more to go, you could say.

Here is a recipe:

Kitty's Quick & Cheap Tomato Soup for Cruise.
Makes one litre / 4 servings.

500 g Sieved Tomato Passata or Tomato Purée
2 tbsp Garlic Powder or dried garlic
1 tbsp Oregano, Dried
1 tsp Crushed Red Pepper
1 Chicken Bouillon Cube
500 ml Hot Water

Place hot water and tomato passata into a medium saucepan. Crumble in the bouillon cube and oregano. Sprinkle over the dried garlic and the crushed red pepper to taste. Bring all ingredients to a boil. Reduce heat and simmer for 5 minutes to allow the garlic time to absorb water and soften. Eat!
I also grate Parmesan over this using a Microplane, it adds minimal calories and fat but maximum taste!

Serving size 250 ml /approx 1 US cup
Total Fat 1.12g
Saturated Fat 0.28g
Cholesterol 0mg
Sodium 640.56mg (depending upon the stock cube and the tomato passata/purée)
Total Carbohydrate 10.15g
Dietary Fiber 0.97g
Sugars 1.58g
Protein 3.16g

Hugs and quiches from Kitty

Sunday, 29 May 2011

The Rapture, or, Throwing a party and the Guest of Honour fails to appear.

Yes, very VERY awkward, at least for the dozens or more who actually quit their jobs, spent all their money and otherwise burned their bridges.

OK, Jesus, but you DID say...

Folks, if some Yahoo who is spouting stuff he couldn't possibly know himself ALSO has a 'Donate' button on their website, well, it's rather some kinda clue, now isn't it?

Well, I don't know about the rest of you, but, I'm still here! A week later and still not a thing has occurred.
Actually, The Rapture happened but none of us were deemed worthy of being called. You might have found one of these on your front door, like I did:

I DID think about it long and hard, what if something does happen? Hmm. I decided that I'd choose to stay here on Earth. I could be a lot of help to those left behind plus some of my loved ones and dear friends most certainly would not be going anywhere. Plus, what use would I be in Heaven? No, if it's OK with God, Jesus and whomever else decides these things, leave me on Earth to help those in need. Heaven can wait, so to speak. I have Eternity.

On the other hand, I suppose if I'm going to end up in Hell, all the Texans and I can get together with my friends from the Desert and install air-conditioning.

So, the Fundies have now decided WHY there are no more dinosaurs here on Earth. No, it was NOT a gigantic comet that hit the Earth or any of that scientific nonsense, nope...

Now doesn't that just make a LOT more sense?

I hope this generated a giggle, that's why I posted on this Fête des Mères. Now I shall leave you with a lovely song that has some lush artwork/animation. Simply beautiful.

Green grass... yes, and I'm thinking the soft green spring wheat..

I hope you enjoy the rest of your weekend, and for me, in my mind I'm sailing into the sunset...

Warm regards and calm winds from Kitty.

Friday, 27 May 2011

Friday the Thirteenth and Dukan Week 13 (Take Three...)

You have no idea how many times I tried to write this post and failed.

First, it was Blogger. I couldn't even access the site for all of Friday and then on and off over that weekend.
Then, my guests arrived that stayed here for a week. I couldn't really lounge around tapping away on my Blog all day, even though they stayed next door most of the time. I still had two to seven children running around that needed goûters and hot cocoa making and plasters applying.
Then I found out that, due to my ongoing issues with my leg, I can't get a medical certificate allowing me to continue practising épee fencing. I'd started it up again, I am REALLY good at it and it is a fearsome workout. But I have to wait until my leg is 'fixed'.
THEN I fell as I was taking a basket of laundry up the stairs and severely pulled my left Achilles tendon. I didn't actually snap it, like I did to the right one in 2009, but it was enough that I haven't been able to manage a walk until yesterday.
Then I got an x-ray of said legs done, to see why I am having these ongoing pain issues and found the bone spurs on the bottom of my heels have grown back. I look like some kind of fighting chicken. I'm seeing a specialist in Saint Brieuc in a couple weeks to see if I need an operation.
Then I spoke to a very old and dear girlfriend and found out some things about one of my ex-husbands. Well... that kinda was the straw in the ointment and the cookie crumbled for me. It's harsh to find out stuff about oneself, about someone who you 'thought' had at one point held a least a tiny shred of affection (but didn't) and I feel like such a fool. I also guess I know how Diana must have felt when she realised what was going on between Chuck and Cammy.
But I've accepted it, I've worked through it, I've decided it is part of my past and I refuse to think about what was (or was not.) I've now thrown off the blanket of depression and I'm back in the sunshine again.
These above are what I'll call "rationalisations" for not posting on my Blog about my weight.
Banging on about accountability doesn't mean diddlily squat if I don't follow through, even if it is just for myself, so, I apologise to myself and anyone else interested. And I forgive myself and hope you'll do the same.

Even though I was ignoring the Blog, I still kept up with what I've been eating on the Livestrong site. (And if anyone cares about what I actually eat on this regime, my Food Diary is public.) I do what I guess is called 'Emotional Eating'. I might have been unhappy as all get out but those warm, homemade Double Chocolate Chocolate Chip Toasted Pecan cookies sure as hell helped. Especially when dunked into that enormous glass of Cognac. (Which is actually in reserve for my Christmas Fruitcakes, but I digress.)

Did falling off the wagon and breaking my regime REALLY help? No. It gave me the sugar high from Hell and I woke up with a massive hangover the next day. Plus I ended up putting weight right back on, weight I've been fighting to take off and KEEP off! Bloody wol me, that's for sure.

So, with yet another burst of renewed resolve, I began again.

When our friend Kate died, her sister gave me all of her clothes and many of her personal effects to give to Charity or use ourselves. I took about a hundred books down to the AIKB library, about 10 black plastic bags full of clothing down to Secours Catholique (they were delighted because it was all really nice and new, better women's clothing.) But I decided to keep ahold of her shoes and a lot of her 'casual' clothing. It was too small for me but I figured the girls would get 'play clothes' use out of it (and they have.)

Well, in that mass of shoes (30 pairs!) was a pair of MBT trainers. My older daughter wore them one day and said that I should try them. This makes no sense to me, I had tried them on four years ago and it was like Cinderella's Ugly Stepsister and the Glass Slipper, no way José. But, just two days ago, I tried them on again and the left one fit perfect, the right one was a bit snug but ok with thin socks. My FEET have shrunk?

The reason I say anything is because I can walk in these shoes and the pain is reduced probably 75%. I don't NEED to limp. A couple of paracetamol and it's ok. Of course when I take the shoes OFF, then my tendon screams bloody revenge, but, while walking it is lulled into a false sense of security, that's ok by me!
This is from this morning and yes... that is the heavy side of 84kg.

I'm not giving up. I did slow down, I did backslide but I'm still here. That is what is important to me.

I read a fabulous quote from a woman who basically had her stomach removed so she could lose weight.
You can't continue the same behaviour
 and expect a different result.

That applies to so many, many situations in my life. I'm in charge of me. It's me that needs to change if I'm not content with my situation, I can't expect the world around me to do so. Evolution just ain't that quick. And I have to keep telling myself this fact over and over. I'm hoping one day it will precede all my actions, even possibly one day it will even precede my thoughts.

I have to keep trying to improve. I'm still a work in progress, yes. And please God may it be many years before the final touches have been applied; I still have a long way to go. And I know it.

Because... I might not measure up to some others, but, I am still me. I am still a valid human being. I have worth. And there's only ONE unique, frustrating, complicated and sometimes silly moi.

And *I* am the one with that Double Chocolate Chocolate Chip Toasted Pecan cookie recipe.
So there!

I wish you a fabulous, sun-drenched and glorious weekend! I'll be back very soon with something completely random and rather nonsensical but fun! :D

Warm regards, Kitty

Monday, 16 May 2011

Uh, yeah.

Sorry about this, but I've fallen into a slight pit of depression. After I figure how to climb back out, regular service will be resumed.
Kind regards, Kitty

Saturday, 7 May 2011

Moments of Joy and Dukan week 11

I love Savage Chickens.... I posted this because I use imagination A LOT. I have these ongoing conversations, in my mind, with important people in my life, people I no longer have contact with. Like my Mother, my Father, people from my past.
I also have this great parallel world I inhabit with The Man I Love. I don't spend my entire life there, but it helps me when I'm feeling vulnerable. I can imagine his strong arms around me, I can bury my face into his chest and feel safe. And loved.

Then I return to reality and face what I need to face. A bit stronger. Not quite so alone.

How was your week?

Mine just flew by. I had a houseful of both girls' school friends running about, chattering in French, playing hide & seek or 'cache-cache', creating 'forts, dens and cabins' and munching on my proffered baked goodies while drinking big mugs of hot chocolate. It was great, I really loved it. Everyone was happy and the sound of laughter rang through the place all week. Brilliant.

I decided to allow my Sour Cream Streusel Coffeecake recipe to have an affair with my Chocolate Chip Cookie recipe and they created a Cupcake/Muffin Love Child. The smell was intoxicating coming straight out of the oven. The top had caramelised into this buttery caramel crust. I tried it. It was.... unbelievable... so... I ended up eating three more. And two more today. Which just proves I can't be trusted alone in a kitchen with my own baked goods.

No... now that you've asked, they aren't in the LEAST Dukan friendly. I still tracked them on my Livestrong  My Plate thing. Then skipped dinner. And took a very long walk. And did a LOT of these 'Butt Busting' exercises.

I'm not posting the recipe because you'll hate me. Plus, a woman has to have SOME secrets, you know....

(If you know me in real life, and ask nicely, I'll bake some for you. But you have to come pick them up.)

Today's quote is really good, so, I want to share it with you:
"I learned that courage was not the absence of fear, but the triumph over it. The brave man is not he who does not feel afraid, but he who conquers that fear." - Nelson Mandela
I still have many, many fears. The fear that I will die alone, forgotten, in poverty. The fear that I won't be able to provide for my children. The fear that I will fail. The fear that I'll never be forgiven for mistakes I've made. And probably the worst fear of all: the fear that my best just isn't good enough.

I live with these fears. They can never control me, but, they still sneak out from time to time and torment me. But by naming them, I take away some of their control and power over me. My fears can never stop me from laughing, can never stop me from enjoying my now, my present. I know they'll still be around tomorrow, I know I can never completely get rid of them all. But, that's OK with me. I can laugh at myself. Laughter is a very powerful weapon in my arsenal.

The fear I will always be fat, obese, ugly, unhealthy and un-sexy is gone. My silhouette is normal, now. Even though the weight loss has slowed down considerably, it is still happening. I look OK without clothes, I don't shudder looking at myself in a mirror. Yes, I am super-duper flabby; you don't go from a lifetime high of over 21 stones down to under 13 without looking like a deflated blimp, this is true. I know I need to focus on toning up, but that's going to be a very long and ongoing process. I have lots of muscles that have been asleep for years. So, I'm starting gradually.

So, 82kg. A bit more released into the fat ether which I don't need to have return again. That makes 16kg / 2 1/2 stones / 35 pounds total reduction in the last 11 weeks. I'm really pleased with that. Add to it the fact I feel fantastic!!! Stepping on the scales yesterday was a moment of joy. Because even though I fluffed up, a bit, and made stupid food choices, I was able to correct it by extra exercise and knowing I haven't failed at my regime, not whatsoever. I make mistakes, I forgive myself, I make amends and carry on. The sun rises in the morning, tomorrow is another chance and another day. A brand new day. Perfect seque for some Sting, eh?

Sting - Brand New Day...

I hope you have a fabulous week!
Hugs and quiches from Kitty x

Friday, 29 April 2011

Look on the Bright Side and Dukan week 10

Enjoy your life.

Because life is ephemeral.

Just like these blooms captured around our garden, it will fade away.

The cycle of birth, death and rebirth is fixed in the seasons and is a sure, steady reminder that nothing stays the same, the only real constant is change.

Just remember: You get exactly what you settle for.

If there is nothing we can do about change, then, might as well enjoy the ride, correct?

The Springtime flowers, brief though they may be, are glorious.

Love, true love, however, is constantly changing, developing and undying and even if it burns down to just a small hidden flame, it is still there. It still exists.

So love deeply, whatever or whomever you choose as you heart's desire. But give it all you have. It's one of the best things about being human, and being alive.

When God was passing out Lives, why did I have to stand in the "Seriously Complicated, Mostly Unfulfilled, Often Stressful but Ultimately Character-Building" queue? I'm guessing I was busy reading a book and wasn't paying attention....

I didn't post last Friday, I had a week before of seriously bad food choices, stress, complications and emotional eating. I could have blamed it on 'hitting a plateau', but, that's not honest. I went overboard on sugar and fat and carbohydrates and just didn't want to bother forcing myself to get my trainers on and go for a walk, and well, it showed. Nothing budged. So, nothing gained but the weight stayed the same, last week.

THIS week, however, I saw improvement, real and right there on the scales.

THIS week I buckled down and started walking with a friend every evening for an hour. She is a little fireball, being Brazilian, and will walk for hours at a rapid rate if allowed. I have to make sure I am well warmed up and have taken Paracetamol before we meet up or I'm limping halfway through. Still, it's great exercise, I've lost another kilogram and my clothes are now seriously loose on me. Its fun, taking things out of boxes which I have not been able to wear since 2004-2005 and finding they not only fit well, but are in some cases actually no longer tight. Hurrah!

In a few more kilos, I will be down to the lightest weight I have ever been here in France. I forget exactly how light I became, I'll have to go dig it out from my old Blog.

The very biggest differences this time around are I have a handle on my depression, I no longer feel vulnerable and completely alone. I refuse to allow myself to be taken advantage of again. I know I face challenges, but, I have skills and methods to handle them now. My health is improving, I am well-ensconced in the way of life here in France and my daughters are having a joyous childhood. And, I like myself. I'm proud of what I've achieved. For once I can say 'I am happy in my skin!' These are things mere money cannot purchase.

Plus... this time around... I have hope. I live in hope.

Everything happens, and everything doesn't always have a reason for WHY it has happened, but, happen it will. Once I accepted that, life seemed a bit less mean. Life seems now to be just that: a life. I can do with it as I choose, it is all my doing, no one else's. I am making this journey alone, regardless of who is around me. I will enjoy this life to the fullest extent. I hope all of you will as well.

It's your choice.

In Hope. x
Have a great week, Kitty x

Saturday, 16 April 2011

Good News at the end of week Eight on Dukan.

I've been ridiculously busy this past week with a plethora of different bits and pieces in my life, ends that needed tying up and off, little tasks that just had to get done. The Lion's Share has been accomplished, all the while sticking to my resolutions I made to myself earlier in the year. So, I feel slightly successful. Not Hilary climbing Everest successful, but more like 'keeping nutritious meals on the table while the house stays clean & tidy and the girls don't argue' successful. Far better than some silly mountain anytime.

I had the results of my blood tests come back and I discussed them with my doctor. Based partially on the diet I am following, partially on the (now) daily exercise I do, partially upon the weight loss and probably partially upon just dumb luck; my diabetes appears to be in complete remission. So I have been taken completely off the diabetes drug Metformin I was taking. This is exciting and thrilling for me because, as long as I stick to what I'm doing, I'll be one of many who have managed to conquer Type 2 diabetes. I'll have more tests done in the summer to make sure I'm still on track, but, heh, I have to tell you - I feel like a different person. Diabetes can really cause such an impact upon so many areas of your life: moods, rationality, vision, nerves, increased chance of strokes, heart and kidney disease; the list goes on and on. So often, people show no symptoms at all until damage has been done. I'm so lucky mine was caught early and treated.

The next couple paragraphs of this might not interest you unless you yourself are diabetic or if you have a family member or close friend who suffers from this affliction.

The blood test I had in the Autumn showed my HbA1c Glycated hemoglobin was within the normal range of 4.0% - 6.0%. Mine was 5.4% so I went from two Metformin a day down to one a day. January's test was 5.3%, so the Metformin was cut in half again, one pill every other day. Now this latest test has a result of 5.2%, still very much normal so that is why the diabetes medication has been dropped completely.

My blood pressure is good at 130/70 and my triglyceride levels have fallen from 1.41 g/l to 1.02 g/l. I still need to bring down my HDL cholesterol, so I've decided to try achieving this by cutting down on the beef I eat. Steak haché is so quick, easy and delicious, but, I've been buying the budget brand and the saturated fat level is around 15%. I need to cut back until I can afford to buy the 5% fat beef. I think if I can do this it should impact the HDL. I'm not getting saturated fat from any other source in my diet.

So, I'd say after two months on the Dukan Regime, my health has improved, my energy levels are really good, I don't feel hungry or 'snacky' during the day and the weight keeps coming off! My youngest daughter remarked yesterday, as I came down the stairs, "Mummy! Oh! That's you? I saw your legs and 'taille' coming down and I thought you were Mwanda!" Mwanda is her nickname for her 13 year-old sister. No, I have not slimmed down to pre-pubescent, but I don't need to wear baggy sweatpants and men's t-shirts any longer and I guess both girls are quite astonished at my weight loss progress. Their encouragement keeps me going. I want my family to be proud of me.

In the last two months on the Dukan Regime, I've lost 13kg/ 2 stones/ 28 pounds.

Apparently it takes six weeks of doing something on a daily basis to make it into a habit. I'd say I've now got the walking down to a 'habit' and certainly the method of eating comes without a second thought. Yes, I DO cheat, now and again, but I always account for it in my daily food diary and either plan for the 'cheat' by eating less before or eating less afterwards. Or by doing a lot of physical activity to make up for it.

I have finally sorted out CPAM, my medical coverage, so, this is why I was able to do the flurry of tests. The kinésithérapeute finally was able to help with my left Achilles tendon so that is much better. Yes, I do have to take pain medication but at least I can walk with barely a limp, huge progress. 

I guess I am simply just thankful for so much right now. My children are all happy and doing well at work and at school. I feel calm, centred and happy to be living where I am. I do have moments of joy in my life. I have loved and been loved in my life with a fierce intensity. We are safe where we live and no longer feel a constant threat from unwanted persons impinging upon our life. I feel such gratitude towards the person and the situations that have brought us to where we are right now. Thank you so very much. Please accept my thanks on behalf of us all.

I send out joy, hope, love and light to all. Have a wonderful week.

Friday, 8 April 2011

Dukan week Seven or Pardon My Apparent Lack of Creativity.

I mean what surer sign of Spring than a Frappuccino?

No, just to reassure you, my town has not yet arrived in the 21st century by acquiring a $tarbucks, no. Do not fret. A petit noir is still 1.10€ - 1.20€, cafés still insist on boiling the milk past scalding temperature if you ask for a crème. Life is still normal here.

My week on my regime has been fraught with ups and down, lots of downs, rather like my life right now. I stressed out mid-week and cracked open the Christmas Cake tin. This is the fruitcake I have which is still maturing from year BEFORE last, 2009. I unwrapped the buttercloth covering, still redolent of the heavy Bacardi soaking the cake had received, then gorged on a HUGE slice of the moist, fragrant love-stuff. (In case you are wondering, it was awesomely good, whoa.) Then I had a slab of marzipan, just to top off the carb fest. I do a nut topping on our family's Christmas cake, the girls aren't too fond of either Royal icing nor Fondant, let alone marzipan.

I've spent a lot of time feeling really down in the dumps of late. I feel tossed about by the whims of circumstance like flotsam jettisoned into the Universe's emotional ether. Well, something like that but said better.

So, not much progress because of cheating, a 'hormonal plateau' plus feeling too depressed to get out and walk 30 minutes twice a day. On a positive note: I haven't yet completely lost my sense of humour, I do attempt to look at my situation and find things to be amused about. I also know I am far better off than millions of other people. I try to count my blessings each day and be grateful for not yet having shuffle'd off this mortal coil. Slings and arrows, I've got 'em. Outrageous fortune: missing.

So for the 'Money Shot' (a term which I did not know until last year when it was explained to me.)

I'm taking that at 87kg. Still reducing, just not in any kind of rapid sense. Still, the end result is what counts. My clothes fit better, the smaller stuff.

My doctor says I've reduced a bit over 12kg since the last time he weighed me in his office. He has halved my heart medication. I have a blood test tomorrow to check on my cholesterol, iron and blood sugar, I should have the results sometime next week. That will let me know how this regime is impacting my health. I'm sure it's favourably since my blood pressure was down to 130/70.

I'd really like to post something other than my weight updates. This must be mindbendingly boring for anyone who reads this. Sorry. I'll try to become inspired. It's just hard right now to express myself due to general ennui.

Sending you all best wishes for a lovely weekend and week.

Friday, 1 April 2011

Spring Flowers and end of Dukan week Six

These are the lovely flowers planted in the town square, behind are the flower pyramid boxes in front of the Church.

They lift my spirits every time I walk by them, so, at least twice a day on my walks. I always stop and smell the flowers. :)

My woodland walk gave me this lovely leaf the other night. A sweet thing to find for some precious memories I keep from that same spot. I adore Springtime, walking down this path, listening to birdsong, watching the season change, the leaves appearing on the trees. Each day I watch the blush of chartreuse green flush the trees away from the drab brown and grey of winter. It brings me great peace, this place.

This is me, VERY early in the morning; My, don't I look chipper!? (Just keeping it real, folks!)
Why am I smiling? The scales look pretty OK this week, that's why!

I'm down to 97.5kg. Only a shift of 500g down from last week, but, that's a pound, so, I'll take it!
And, I've got the beginnings of my hourglass figure back. Only the beginnings, mind you, but, still. Small steps.

Next week I'm not expecting a lot because, well, I'm out of cash to buy food for myself, I only have enough for the girls and Restos du Coeur finished last week, so, my diet will most likely suffer, a bit. But never mind, I know what I need to do to get back on track afterwards. The girls will always eat well and nutritiously, that's my main concern.

CAF decided to cut my cash by 7/8ths. No idea why and no letter explaining the change but I just checked on the site and I've got less than 100€ coming on Tuesday. Heavens above, I just have to laugh, no use getting stressed as that doesn't help a thing. Assistance Sociale on Monday morning, obviously.

Life in France.... It's always something, isn't it?

Sunday, 27 March 2011



If I can’t do
what I want to do
then my job is to not
do what I don’t want
to do.
It’s not the same thing
but it’s the best I can

If I can’t have
what I want then
my job is to want
what I’ve got
and be satisfied
that at least there
is something more
to want.

Since I can’t go
where I need to go
then I must go
where the signs point
though always understanding
parallel movement
isn’t lateral.

When I can’t express
what I really feel
I practice feeling
what I can express
and none of it is equal
I know
but that’s why mankind
alone among the animals
learns to cry.

Nikki Giovanni

Friday, 25 March 2011

Spring, Livestrong and Dukan week five

Spring has arrived here in Côtes d'Armor in full force. Every weekend you can hear the mosquito sound hanging overhead as dozens of men get out the lawnmowers and attack the lawns fed by the extraordinary amount of water we've had over the winter. Daffodils, hyacinths and crocus are everywhere and I got a lovely surprise discovering some grape muscats growing just outside my kitchen door. Lovely.
I had no idea they were even there!

The cats snooze in the sun...

And nap happily most all the day... so they can chase marbles around on the wood floors all night.

But their cuteness makes up for the odd awakening at 4 am.

Butterflies have appeared, flitting about, always a colourful but brief surprise so early in the year.

At first I ignored these berries, then my elder daughter pointed them out, "Look, Mum! Ladybirds!" And yes, yes they are, hundreds of them in the cypress bushes outside our local Maire. Not berries as I had originally thought.

The increased light, the sunshine and warmth, the new life bursting all around has lifted my spirits considerably. So even though I still have much to face ahead of me, I stay calm and focussed because I have peace and love in my home. That's what counts to me, most of all. The rest is just details, where the Devil resides.

I have been using this site, Livestrong, to track everything that goes into my mouth, the water I drink plus the exercise I manage to accomplish every day. I started using it way back on 12 September 2008, when I first began trying to get my weight back on track. If I count from then to today, I have lost a whopping 30kg/ 4 stone 10 pounds /66 lbs. But, in reality and for the purposes of this regime, I'm just counting what I'm losing on Dukan, and I saw a small improvement again this morning.

Slow and steady does the trick for me. The progress would be more significant if I could only manage to get out and walk more often, but, it's just too painful unless I load up on analgesics. My Kinésithérapist has offered to let me go in during office hours and use the stationary bike in her office. I did that one day this week. Now I just have to 'man up' and go in more often!

May I suggest you check out Livestrong if you too are in the process of becoming more healthy. It's a great resource and my regular commenters are welcome to friend me, I am LaCheshireChat there as well. My food diary is only open to people whom I have befriended, but on my public profile, you can look at the recipes I have posted.

I wish you a lovely weekend and a great week!