When Last I Left You…

When last I left you, on Friday afternoon, I was doing well physically, but not so great in the mental/emotional department.  Well, I fixed that.  Yeah. I went to a Grief Seminar at my church.  It was very well done and all.  Just difficult for me.  In so many ways.  I was going to leave, go home and turn off the phone, and crawl into bed for the rest of the day.  Instead, I nabbed an extra sweet roll on the way out the door, went to Walmart for some necessities, and stopped for frozen yogurt on the way home.  And when I got home I ate some more.  I think I ate some of those rosemary raisin bean balls. Nutritious AND calorie-laden.

Then I decided to read a bit of that book The Know-It-All.  Is it true that laughter is the best medicine?  Seems like it helped a little bit.  Plus a phone call from my BFF, and a call to my brother, where I shared some of the wickedly funny humor from that book.

I settled in for the night, had a very healthy, light dinner, and went to bed early.  I had plenty of time to sleep because it was Daylight Savings Time.  But I was up by 5:15am which gave me a lot of time before church.  I spent a nice amount of time reading and praying, and then I decided to watch a David Platt sermon on the computer.  I know.  How many sermons does a girl need to hear on a Sunday?  But this one was fascinating.  He did a very long interview with a fascinating young girl.  Her name is Katie Brown (she has a blog!) and at the age of 19, she decided she wanted to go to Africa to help children.  She ended up staying there, and now at 25 she is in the process of adopting 14 children (homeless kids from the slum,) as well as setting up a school, a children’s sponsorship program, and various other ministries.  Wow!  That knocked any last remnant of self-pity right out of my brain.

The day at church was so good.  So many kind people said just the right thing to me.  I got to talk to the young couple that I am working with to set up the child sponsorship program in Haiti.  After seeing Katie Brown’s story, I am pretty psyched about our little project!  They took a picture of us together to show to the people in Haiti, and it was a really good picture of me LOL.

After church I stopped at the market to get some vegetables.  I needed to have some more in the house to get my food choices back on track.  Told myself I couldn’t buy any fruit because I still had plenty at home.  I got cauliflower, asparagus, a red bell pepper, and some green beans.  Head on home, and what do I see standing on the corner in the cold damp weather in our little tiny town?  One of these little Mexican guys standing shivering in a sweatshirt selling STRAWBERRIES.  What month is this?  Guess who has a whole case of strawberries?  Very tasty too…

Today has been a very good day.  I ate, of course, some strawberries and cottage cheese.  I made a batch of that wonderful Cauliflower-Potato Bake–so yummy I had it for lunch and dinner.  And I tried something I had been thinking about for a while.  I made a batch of Spackle 2.0 and divided it into snack-sized portions as a substitute for chocolate chip cookie dough.  VERY satisfying.  For me, much better than the stuff made with beans.

I surfed around the blogs, and came across this guy’s blog.  He is a W.W. leader, and for some reason it was comforting to me to hear that a W.W. leader still has some of the same struggles that I do.  Looking for and eating junk food when traveling was one he mentioned.   More importantly, he talked about the struggle he had during a particularly emotionally painful time, how he had a 10 pound weight gain, how he kept eating healthy food and journaling and everything, but it took a year for him to turn it around and lose that 10 pounds.  I find comfort and hope in that.

Noah’s latest attempt at playing ‘little dog.’  That is an oversized ottoman, about 30″X36″, Sophie and Monk and my feet and a couple of books usually have plenty of room on there all at the same time.

And Yay!  I officially won the Presidential Bronze Medal!  It took 125 hours of various exercise to get to 40,000 points.  And then they offered to sell me various and sundry forms of said medal.  I opted to lift the image off their site and award it to myself on my blog.

I celebrated my win with a vigorous 40 minute hike.  And that’s all the news that’s fit to print around here today.  Thanks for all the great comments on my last entry.

A Different Kind of Day

Today was a different kind of day.  I started my day same as normal.  And then I just didn’t feel like doing anything.  So I gave myself permission to do just that.  Maybe it was this poster I saw this morning.

I dunno.  Maybe I overdid yesterday.  Whatever it was, I stayed in my pajamas all day and was pretty content doing nothing.

Sophie got a little bored.





Noah was a good boy.



Sophie thought the picture needed some improvement.

Some of the recent eats:

I told you guys about this idea for fruit dip/spread a while ago.  This was the first time I made it.  Fixed dinner for my spiritual formation group last night–healthy taco salad (yumm) and strawberries with this dip.  It met with unanimous approval.    People were scraping their plates to get the last of it!   I had some leftover, so topped a white peach with a couple of tablespoons.  Divine!  Recipe for Creamy Fruit Dip.

Tried out that new recipe I mentioned the other day.  This was absolutely divine.  Maybe its been too long since I had the real thing.  But honestly, it tasted like coconut custard pie to me.  I made it this morning, and saved it for dessert tonight.  The rest is safely in the freezer.  Thanks again to the culinary genius of Georgie.  The thing about something like this is that yes, it tastes luxurious like dessert.  But the ingredients are healthy and are fueling your body while you indulge.  Its a win-win situation.

Dinner tonight was scrumptious.  I’m still trying to choose stuff that I don’t have to spend too much time chopping (what was I thinking of, buying a butternut squash,) and I’m still using paper plates (washing dishes is NOT fun) but I’m back to cooking obviously.  Leftover roasted beets, roasted green beans, and a piece of perfectly cooked salmon–yay me.  Too many times I get distracted and overcook it.

Been watching a marathon of Biggest Loser episodes today.  I feel a little guilty admitting to watching it, because I essentially disagree with most of what they do there.  But I pick up a few tidbits.  And today was particularly cathartic.   There was a father/daughter team on there that was particularly close, and I cried really hard a couple of times with their interactions.  And then that same father lost his brother DURING his time at the ranch and he was grieving, and I cried hard again during that episode.  I don’t cry much at all about losing my dad, so I guess I think its good that this happens once in a while.

And now I’m tired from doing nothing all day, so I think I’ll take a shower and head to bed. You all have a great weekend!


I thought I knew a lot about grief.  I thought I was pretty good at it actually.  As nurses  we study grief.  I’ve taken continuing education courses on it.  I’ve supported parents when their baby died.  Sometimes that was a very personal experience, when I took care of their baby every day for months.  And sometimes  it was more professional, when I had just been assigned to their baby for the first time that day.  And goodness knows I have deeply grieved the loss of so many of my beloved dogs over the years.

But this grief is different.  It is not the heart-breaking, gut-wrenching grief that I have experienced in the past.  For goodness sake, I hardly cried at all for a couple of weeks.  Hmmm, I thought to myself,  I got off easy on this one.  WRONG!

This time  I have had days where I felt a little down.  Days where I just wasn’t motivated to do much.  LOTS of days where I didn’t want to talk to people, and where, frankly, I just was a wee bit irritated at them.  And then, of course, there is the guilt and confusion that comes along.  Am I just indulging my naturally lazy tendencies?  Am I just giving in to my usual irritation at people’s shortcomings?  Am I finally as depressed as the rest of the world is?  And worst of all, IS IT MANDATORY THAT  YOU GAIN TWENTY POUNDS WHEN YOU LOSE YOUR FATHER?

My pastor sent me a little book on grief.  It was so helpful.  The best chapter was the one that compared grief to fog.  I know about fog.  I’ve been driving through fog to and from work for over twenty years.  It just made so much sense to me.  How I would be going along fine, have a nice plan for the day–a little work, a little fun–and then I would stand up, and realize nope, that’s not gonna happen today.  Other days its clear sailing, no fog rolling in at all.

Sometimes I think I’m just acting out–not doing so much housework, and not going back to the gym.   I think that’s why I’m so particularly pleased with how I’ve been eating this past week.  I’m not going off the deep end and “acting out” with my food choices.  I AM allowing myself to have a few more treats than normal without the guilt.  mostly.  Yes, I wish I could get with the program and get this extra weight off.  But for now, I will try to be content to maintain or lose tiny bits.  The day will come when I will get the house cleaned, get to the gym, and lose the weight.  For now I’m determined to treat myself with as much kindness as I have always encouraged other people to do when they lost a loved one.