Saturday, January 03, 2009


Edited because the family is requesting privacy (which I would like to respect).

The bottom line? Another woman taken away from her family by evil breast cancer. Too young, too beautiful....and cancer didn't discriminate.

The basement "remodel"

Other people's remodels involve drywall, lighting, and such. Mine involves some hand me down furniture, but I am delighted!

First, generous Eileen gave Ryan and I her old - but beautiful - entertainment center armoire and a bigger-than-ours TV. Then, Heather called and asked if we'd like their old couch because they were investing in a new set of living room furniture for their house. (Yes!) Because removing the old couch and installing a new one involved removing a side window on the house (don't ask!), I decided that now was the time to get a loveseat (which, I decided, was my ideal configuration; easily seating four adults) to replace the chair.

Done! I'm happy with the results. We did a pizza and movies night with the Hisatomi's this evening, and it was suitably comfortable. Cozy - the room didn't grow in this process - but very comfy.

Weight...well, coulda been better, coulda been worse.
Bowl of peas - 1
Almonds - 2
Veggie Pizza - 12
Salad - 6 (lots of "good" stuff in it)
ice cream - 4

Total = 25, so used 3 flex points. Okey dokey.

Church - and the belated children's play - is tomorrow. I'm looking forward to that.

Friday, January 02, 2009


I'm not officially on Weight Watchers - I'm going to attempt to go it alone for the next month, especially with my surgery impending (six days and counting). But today I ate healthy food, and counted up the points.

1/2 slice cranberry bread - 2 (not the most auspicious beginning to the day!)
sushi - 8
lentil soup - 4
whole wheat roll - 2
chocolate - 1
apple - 1
crackers with bruschetta topping - 3

So total points were 22. The lentil soup had a ton of veggies in it, so my day was not as bereft of fruits and veggies as it first appeared....but still, not perfect. (Aiming for 5 fruits and veggies, I think I scored perhaps 4. Maybe 3.5.)

I poured myself a glass of wine to go with dinner, but only had a sip or two - just not worth it to me. I should have had a banana instead of cranberry bread, and I knew it, but still....not too bad. Not bad at all.

Every day counts. Today counted in the right direction.

Wonderful words

I discovered this on another blog, and I'm really mulling it over right now, and letting it sink in. Maybe it will resonate with you, too.

Greatness? Yeah, Baby!
"Our worst fear is not that we are inadequate, our deepest fear is that we are powerful beyond measure. It is our light, not our darkness that most frightens us. We ask ourselves, 'Who am I to be brilliant, gorgeous, talented and fabulous?' Actually, who are you not to be? You are a child of God; your playing small doesn't serve the world. There is nothing enlightened about shrinking so that other people won't feel insecure around you. We were born to make manifest the glory of God within us. It is not just in some of us, it is in everyone, and as we let our own light shine, we unconsciously give other people permission to do the same. As we are liberated from our own fear, our presence automatically liberates others."- Marianne Williamson


Today I tried on a pair of my go-to jeans.

They didn't zip.

So I registered for the Seattle Rock'n'Roll 1/2 Marathon on June 27th. Let's take care of this, for once and for all.

My initial training will be delayed because of surgery, but I'm going to get this taken care of, one way of the other!

The scale

I am back to my pre-cancer weight.

Insert your expletive of choice here. (sigh)

I know what to do. I must do it.

Thursday, January 01, 2009

Happy new year

2009 has come in softly, quietly, and I hope that it's an omen that the year will be drama-free, focused on what is important, joyful, and filled with small gatherings of friends.

Last night was lovely and quiet, and I enjoyed "Meditation on a Candle Flame" which is a free podcast on iTunes. Check it out - it's wonderful for someone like me, because I have monkey-mind and having a guided meditation is so much more effective at keeping me focused on that which I'm attempting to focus. I wrote in my journal, had just one glass of wine, sat quietly with Ryan, and didn't attempt to go beyond the moment.

This morning, I baked fresh granola, and we had Paul & Libby over for our traditional New Year's brunch. (We've done it at their house, and at restuarants, but this was the first time in memory at our house.) Fresh fruit, home made granola, yogurt, coffee....a simple feast. Oh, with some home made cranberry loaf, too (which is actually very healthy).

Now, Paul & Libby are gone, and Ryan is working on his bike. I took Shep for a very rainy walk ("invigorating" is what I'm telling myself), and after I finish here I will change out of my now-damp clothes and then take Tessa to the Hisatomi's for a kid playdate. The moms are headed to "Marley & Me" downtown, and Randal is watching Tessa so that Ryan can have some much needed downtime....he's been working so hard, and taking little to no days off, and he needs some quiet, too.

And New Year's Resolutions? This year, I'm resolved to just keep going. I've made wonderful strides in lots of directions - health, family, work, home, greening, friendship, money, spirituality - and so instead of beating myself up and focusing on what needs to change, I am merely recommitting to those things that I'd been working on all along. I suppose that is a major difference from other years, where I've beaten myself up for what I had not accomplished; this year may be no different in that regard (or maybe it is) but my mindset has changed. My "to-do" list is always longer than humanly possible, but rather than focusing on that I'm trying to live in the moment, to tackle what I can do now, and then to enjoy it, too.

Speaking of which, I am so glad I cleaned house in symbolic preparation for New Year's. It was SO nice to wake up to, and we all feel inspired to put things away properly and to revel in the order just a bit more than usual.

Simple things. I used to think that simple things were for simple minds, but now I've realized that the simple things are often the most important, and the most difficult, and I'm trying to settle in with that.

Happy new year, everyone. I hope that you can live in the moment for a while today, too, and feel content in yourself.

Wednesday, December 31, 2008

Quotes for New Year's

These came to my inbox from, and I thought I'd share. Ryan is giving Tessa a bath, the dinner dishes are put away, the chimes are tinkling softly, and the house is clean, and my mind is ready for a relaxing evening with Ryan, candles, and my journal. Bliss!

New Year's"We will open the book. Its pages are blank. We are going to put words on them ourselves. The book is called Opportunity and its first chapter is New Year's Day." -- Edith Lovejoy Pierce

"Be always at war with your vices, at peace with your neighbors, and let each New Year find you a better man." -- Benjamin Franklin

"Year's end is neither an end nor a beginning but a going on, with all the wisdom that experience can instill in us." -- Hal Borland

"Every man should be born again on the first day of January. Start with a fresh page. Take up one hole more in the buckle if necessary, or let down one, according to circumstances; but on the first of January let every man gird himself once more, with his face to the front, and take no interest in the things that were and are past." -- Henry Ward Beecher


Okay, so I'm nearly ready for the new year to begin.

Fresh sheets on the beds, clean bathrooms, vacuumed and dusted, the kitchen tidied, Tessa's room re-organized, the family room put back into order. Pet food back in the cupboard, the car through a car wash and gassed up, groceries stocked up.

Symbolically, I'm ready for a fresh start. I'm ready to recommit to all those things I'm working on so hard, and I'm ready for the newness of the coming year. I'm hopeful, this New Year's Eve, that next year will be easier.

So tonight, our family will be here, together, snug in our home, as the wind howls outside. I hear the chimes tinkling madly as the wind throws them around, and it is music to me. Ryan and I will share a special bottle of wine, and I think we'll both write in our journals. Tessa has a special bottle of sparkling cranberry juice that she picked out, and we will all toast one another.

We usually do a party with Paul & Libby, sometimes even a formal party, and I've loved that for many years. This year, though, the quiet feels just perfect. We'll still see Paul & Libby tomorrow, but tonight will be calm, reflective, and peaceful.

Happy new year, everyone.

Tuesday, December 30, 2008

What first?

I'm tackling my "to do" list. No fun, no fun at all.

But I'm determined to bring in the new year on a good note.

Sunday, December 28, 2008

Finishing up Christmas 08, preparing for 09

Today was the family Christmas party at the Ochoa's home. Almost all of us were there, and I enjoyed everyone's company immensely, and felt gratitude for extended family.

This morning, we also went to church, for the first time in a while. I'm so glad that the snow is melted and gone! It was peaceful to sit in our familiar seats, listening to a sermon about sacred spaces. (More on that some other time, perhaps, as I was filled with thoughts of my own sacred spaces.)

And then this evening, after the family party, a surprise get-together with the RE (religious education) council - incredible women whom I adore. They are refreshingly honest, thoughtful, intelligent, and open, and I am a better person for their friendship.

(This is very non-chronological. It is what it is.)

Our Christmas tree is down, and our house is relatively back to normal. I like to keep the outdoor lights up until New Year's Day, so they are all that remains of the holiday. (Well, that and the pile of toys in Tessa's room!) This is an interesting time of year for me, because once the tree goes away, I really start to reflect upon the future. The past is past, and now I'm looking ahead to the fresh start of a new year, a return to schedules, to new goals and accomplishments. I'm thinking about writing - lots of it - and about healthy food and time best spent and running again. I'm thinking about what to do more of, what to do less of. I'm thinking of my mothering, and wondering how to be a better mom. (Oh, I'm good, and proud of it. But there is always so much room for improvement, and unfortunately I'm no exception.)

I also get to reflect on what has gone well. My green life is greener by the day; my marriage is stronger; my frugality gets easier instead of harder. I'm delighted by my spiritual wanderings, and the direction that I am headed, and feel great peace from it. I'm proud of home made bread, granola, stock, soup; I'm proud of organic inroads (this year we converted to organic beef and mostly grass fed....which means much less beef!). We're on a plan to get debt free, and we have a ways to go, but I'm proud of that, too.

So, I'm looking back, and looking forward. Honoring what I have accomplished, while striving to better myself and to acknowledge my failings. It's a tough line, and not always easy.

And while looking forward, I'm trying to acknowledge but not focus on the upcoming surgery. It feels like it's galloping towards me and I'm not ready.....I'm not ready at all. I desperately want it done to get out of discomfort/pain and to not look so weird and to not have trouble sleeping because of the expanders....but I hate surgery. Hate hate hate it.

So much to be grateful for, but losses in there, too.

Much to think about at this time of reflection.