Monday, January 4, 2010

A New Year

I know it has been forever since I've been on here, and I do not know if everyone has given up on me or not, but.......I'm b-a-a-c-k.....

Happy 2010 to anyone who is still around this little blog.

Well, not that I need any MORE reasons to get into shape through exercise and weight management, I have another one. The Christmas season has emphasized to me how OUT of shape I am. Three solid days of shopping and I was exhausted....complete with sore muscles - as if I had been working out. It was embarrassing! I mean, I did do a fair bit of walking, but it was not at a FAST pace or anything. A couple days to recuperate, and it was Christmas Eve.....I was still wrapping gifts and getting the house in order and doing whatever pre-prep I could for the next day.

By the 27th of December I was again exhausted - my whole body ached with fatigue. My hubby (who was also exhausted for other reasons having to do with too many days working in a row, including one 36 hour shift) and I spent the entire day in bed - mostly sleeping.

The 25th, we had 11 for our traditional brunch. My SIL and her family (5) arrived shortly after we finished our meal. My oldest son and his family (6) arrived before supper. So, there was a houseful of people all day and into the late evening. I prepared a full turkey dinner - of course, I had helping hands here and there, but I had to tell everyone what to main helpers (that is, those who do not need to be directed) are usually my husband and to a lesser extent, my daughter. My daughter was not home at Christmas this year - they were spending the holiday with my SIL's family in Europe - and my husband was WAY past tired after working 18 hour days since Sept 11 with only 6 days off during that time (one day at a time). He just didn't have it in him - it was all he could do to stay in the living room and visit. Anyway, we had 22 for supper - including the 6 grandbabies that were present - and no dishwasher. There was plenty of pitching in to clean up, most people helped at least some. I was in charge of putting food away and keeping things going and not dissolving into 'towel wars'. LOL

The 26th was our 'family gift exchange' and was also the only day my niece and her family could visit us - so we had 19 for brunch that day. Our gift exchange takes all day - we open ONE gift at a time - and is very relaxing and fun. Since we have more in our family, we have found ways to shorten the process a little bit and this year we were done early enough that the boys could go into town to play a game of hockey. My SIL brought over the turkey for this night - to go with the leftovers from the night before (there were no turkey leftovers). This proved to be a challenge since there were not alot of vegetable leftovers either....but I pulled some things together and set out PAPER PLATES.

Understand one thing - my kitchen is small. My dining table seats 12 (10 comfortably) and fills up the dining room area, but in order to seat the whole family (including the extended family that share our holidays) we have to move furniture in the living room in order to set up an extra table or two. This also includes scouring the house for chairs or something else to sit on. This job is usually overseen by Jim, this year, I put one of my boys in charge. The result was not what I wanted, and had my granddaughters sitting in the kitchen at a children's oldest is 9 1/2 and is nearly as tall as me! Putting them at a kiddie table was NOT an option, to I set three more places and found 3 more chairs.

Every year, Jim says...."We HAVE to turn the (attached single) garage into part of the living area!" This becomes more and more evident as our family expands. Maybe this year. LOL. Seriously, though.....part of the exhaustion comes from having so many in such a small space. Our small space, BTW, is the largest area available within the family.

By the end of the evening on the 26th, I was tired enough that I was not even sorry for the celebration to end. The next day, as I said, we stayed in bed all day (except to get up and eat a couple times). I did not even put the living room in order again until Jan 1 when we did it all again for my daughter and SIL.

My point here, is that if I had been on the treadmill every day for the last year I would not have gotten so tired (at least, not as quickly) and I would have enjoyed the party a little more. If I had ALSO been doing strength training or some kind of workout, I would have had even MORE energy. I really do not do all that much ...... I don't even do as much as when my kids were little. For example.....when I had 4 or 5 little kids running around my legs, I baked for Christmas....cookies and squares and candies and (much more time consuming) the Scandinavian traditionals of Lefse, Flatbread, and Rosettes....each of which requires a full day of work. I also MADE ornaments for everyone I would be seeing at Christmas. (to be fair, this is the first year I have not made ornaments). I cannot believe how much more I could do while managing babies, toddlers, and young ones. Of course, I was in my 20's and 30's then - age does have an effect, after all.

My goal for this year is to focus on being in shape so that next Christmas I can come out of the 2 day celebration without having to spend a full day in bed to recuperate.

We do have regular family days during the summer, days when everyone (sometimes extended family as well) gather at our home for a day of just being together and sharing a meal.....but those happen when Jim is home and rested first of all, and secondly, there is always at least some of the day (if not all) that we are outside - a much bigger space than my little 1300 sq ft house.) Those days do not take as much out of me.

So......I need y'all! I need to be accountable and encouraged and even to have my hand slapped here and there.

As far as my weight I weighed in at 218.2 - I had been hovering around 213 - 216 for the month before Christmas, so that is not too much of a gain - especially considering that yesterday I ate two large plates of corn chips with cheese and salsa! I did get up as high as 220 over the past week, but that only lasted for one day. Still, 218 is a 10 pound gain from my lowest weight last spring. I can feel it in my clothes, too. My first goal is to get back to 208.

Another daughter and SIL are moving (with my grandchildren) to Zambia in June. They will be there indefinitely. My husband has told me two things.... I can go live with them for as long as I want during the winter months when he is working.....but I have to have my weight to 180 or less in order to go (he is concerned about the fact that I have high blood pressure.....flying raises blood pressure, and heat (such as the Zambian summers) also affects it. If I have dropped my weight that significantly, my blood pressure should have dropped as well).

This morning I had a smoothie made with FF, SF vanilla yogurt, a banana, and frozen blackberries. I also drank a cup of green tea (a special weight loss tea that I cannot say 'works' but at least tastes good.) I also took my multi-vitamin pack and my Vitamin B.

I WILL be back, to report on my efforts to make next year's Christmas celebration a little less exhausting.


Stephanie said...

A Zambian trip sounds like great motivation!!

BODA weight loss

SeaShore said...

Your holiday season sounds very busy & like it would be tiring for anyone.

Good luck making your goal. I can tell you that I was on blood pressure medication for years, but no longer since getting to about 180. It's a good feeling.

Margie M. said...

I've been hoping you'd return to "us". Your holiday sounds exhausting no matter what shape you're in. You had a lot to organize for your family and a lot of cooking to do. I think you did remarkably well with that slight gain. Amazing. Keep up the blogging. We'll cheer you on!

Margie writes at:

Anonymous said...

Nice to see you back.