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Sending Toddler Barbie out to play

Tuesday, April 05, 2011

That's how I think of yesterday's walk home. Sending Toddler Barbie outside into the Spring sunshine. Remember when your mom tossed you out of the house if you were a little mopey? "Go outside and play!"

I walked slow and read David Baldacci's "The Collectors". Reading while walking is an acquired skill, one I have practiced off & on since second grade when I got my first library card.

It involves peripheral vision, multi-tasking, and it does slow one's pace, in my case considerably, because my normal walk is what they sometimes call "fierce"... purposeful, my son calls it "late to class". But when I read while walking, I have to tread softly, so if I mis-step I don't tumble to the ground. My knees still bear a scar or two from learning this lesson in childhood.

In any case, it was a pleasant experience. I picked my route to use at least part of the upcoming half marathon route... and as I wandered along a broad avenue of mansions, my reading was also of rich folk and how they lived, and it gave wings to the imagination that drew pictures of the story unfolding.

I truly do love reading, and I love walking... granted, walking at this pace is not nearly the intense cardio workout of "I only have X minutes". No, it is more of a journey through town and through memories. And being outdoors amid homes is peaceful. Seeing the birds, the squirrels, the crocus and violets in bloom, the daffodil leaves poking up calms whatever troubles one is carrying. In one yard I observed some early plantings of tulips and hyacinth that were definitely NOT naturally blooming. They had to have been forced indoors and transplanted outside just this weekend... they weren't there the last time I walked this way.

Now... to walk to catch a bus back to work this morning... as I left my vehicle at work overnight to have this lovely walk to report! Have a great Tuesday, all.

  Member Comments About This Blog Post:

DEBRITA01 4/8/2011 8:40AM

    Reading and walking...I'm lucky if I can walk and chew gum. I admire your coordination! If I didn't fall and injure myself, I would most likely get distracted and keep reading the same paragraph like Rej. I'm glad you got to enjoy two of your favorite things at the same that's what I call multi-tasking.

Comment edited on: 4/8/2011 8:41:22 AM

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TURTLETALK 4/5/2011 10:09PM

    Sounds lovely as I love to read but there is no way I am coordinated enough for that. I have started downloading audiobooks that I can listen to while I walk. I have been known to walk an extra mile or three so that I can finish a section.

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SUNNY1432 4/5/2011 9:14PM

    Sounds like a lovely way to do cardio!! emoticon
Hope tomorrow is another wonderful walking day for you! emoticon

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PENNYAN45 4/5/2011 8:04PM

    Enjoying the springtime with a walk is a great idea.

I can only walk and read when I'm on a treadmill.
Even then it's difficult because I keep losing my place.

How about listening to audio books?


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KANSASROSE67 4/5/2011 12:39PM

    I love to read and love to walk but I don't think I could successfully combine the two! I know what you mean about getting outside when you're mopey, though. It always helps me.

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ANDI571 4/5/2011 12:27PM

    I love to read also, but never thought about doing it while walking. I am afraid I would be one of those that either tumble or run into something. Maybe I could do it on the elliptical. Now that's an idea.

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ARTSY_CANDICE 4/5/2011 10:21AM

    Sounds like a lovely walk!

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SUNNY332 4/5/2011 9:51AM

    Reading while walking takes coordination that I don't have so once again, my friend, I am in total AWE of you.

Enjoy Today and the sunshine coming our way.


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KALIGIRL 4/5/2011 8:31AM

    Fabulous journey.
emoticonfor sharing.

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WATERMELLEN 4/5/2011 7:57AM

    Reading while walking --- how is it that I (loving both) have never tried the combo???

Thanks for the idea!! and the images that you enjoyed "peripherally" while strolling. Hmmm, a transplanted spring flower bulb garden, somehow don't think that would do it for me. It's all about frosty fall planting and watching for the first little shoots and . . . I've got a few crocuses in bloom!

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REJ7777 4/5/2011 7:50AM

    Sounds GREAT! emoticon

I never did master the art of reading and walking (I love both activities too). I tried, but I can't concentrate and keep reading the same paragraph over and over again. emoticon

I sure am glad that toddler Barbie enjoyed her walk! A slow walk is better than sitting on one's butt anyday! Good for you! emoticon

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BUGGYS 4/5/2011 7:45AM

    Reading AND walking?!?! You really have developed a DH reads while on the elliptical ( when he doesn't use the arms ) but I'm lucky if I can get my walks in without tripping on something!! :) I love thatyou get your exercise in where ever you are and whatever you're doing...way to go, Barb! emoticon

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SAMI199 4/5/2011 7:36AM

    I almost felt as if I was walking next to you....Thanks for your always encouraging blogs-they make my day! ( I finally subscribed so I won't miss any-lol)

emoticon emoticon emoticon

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MSLZZY 4/5/2011 7:26AM

    emoticon emoticon emoticon

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There are a million excuses...

Monday, April 04, 2011

to misbehave. There is only ONE good reason not to: because I'm worth it.

I had a bad weekend. It started out feeling unwell Saturday morning... a little headachy, nauseated. Pushed through what I needed to do in the morning, but then essentially gave up the rest of the day... ate to self-medicate... clearly didn't drink enough water... but started feeling a little better by the end of the day.

Sunday... I wrote this blog to try to get myself back in the sparking mood... but then fell off my plan, rebelling against the long walk that's on my training schedule. All kinds of excuses: "over-training?" "You were sick yesterday." "You have household chores to do." But mostly just "I don't wanna!"

Bottom line, Toddler Barbie took over, and I was a slug. Didn't even get my 10,000 steps in, either day. But the good thing is that every new day offers a new emoticon. Today is, like the old saw says, the first day of the rest of my life. Today I am worth it. Not that I wasn't yesterday, but yesterday is past... all I have is today.

Today I will take care of me.

  Member Comments About This Blog Post:

3FAITHFUL 4/5/2011 7:59AM

    You're right, there's always a million excuses...I hope you are back on track and feeling better! emoticon

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LINDAJOYWK 4/5/2011 6:47AM

    I like that anology-toddler Barbie! I will remember that one-even when you are bad
you help me-I will think about being a toddler as opposed to an adult...just keep
moving forward,yesterday is gone-smile!

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REJ7777 4/4/2011 5:13PM

    Aren't we blessed that every day offers a new beginning! emoticon

Ralph Waldo Emerson says it so well! "Finish each day and be done with it. You have done what you could. Some blunders and absurdities no doubt crept in; forget them as soon as you can. Tomorrow is a new day; begin it well and serenely and with too high a spirit to be encumbered with your old nonsense."

emoticon emoticon emoticon emoticon emoticon

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MOTTAMAMALOU 4/4/2011 3:42PM

    I've been sluggish the last few days and can't get my act together. I've fallen off the food wagon and need to get back on.
I will but when?
Are you feeling any better today? Hope all is well, my friend.

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BUGGYS 4/4/2011 3:32PM

    I had a day like that on Saturday, only it was dealing with two parties and too much food but I got back on track yesterday and today I feel great...yesterday is over, today is the present, do the best you can do! emoticon

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DEBRITA01 4/4/2011 2:40PM

    Toddler Barbie came out to play...I can relate. Thank goodness every day IS emoticon Yesterday is over...gotta keep moving forward. You are worth it, and so am I. emoticon

Comment edited on: 4/4/2011 2:40:33 PM

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SUNNY332 4/4/2011 9:28AM

    I know all about the "toddler" inside of me....We all understand. Been there, done that.

I have had a rough weekend with my allergies so not really feeling up to par either but am off to the sun room to get some exercise.

Hang in there and kick all those excuses " not to continue" to the curb and remember you are totally worth all efforts.


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MSLZZY 4/4/2011 8:36AM


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SAMI199 4/4/2011 8:30AM

    emoticon emoticon emoticon emoticon emoticon emoticon emoticon

I'm sorry you felt crappy this week-end. emoticon Yesterday a slug-today a beautiful
Butterfly! What a difference a day can make! emoticon You are worth it everything you do to maintain your health-you're the BEST!!!!! emoticon

Comment edited on: 4/4/2011 8:34:44 AM

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    You go girl!!

I know the feeling - but together we ARE going to get back on track!!

Today is the tomorrow we talked about yesterday!!

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ROCKLAND2010 4/4/2011 8:16AM

    Sometimes you have to be a 'slug'. I know I have days like that. We have so much stress and pressure these days, it can be overwhelming. What is important is that you get back on track.


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Why I Spark.

Sunday, April 03, 2011

I spark because maintenance is hard. I spark because the biggest hurdle to recovery and healthy habits for a lifetime is "giving up" and deciding that maintenance is "too hard". I spark because I'm human.

There is this phenomenon of weight loss. When you reach the mythical land of "thin" you're tempted to think you're done. When you reach the mythical land of "thin" other people who are still struggling sometimes think you have all the answers. Which, in case you were wondering... you don't.

I spark to avoid the trap of self-condemnation. I spark to remind myself this is worth it. I Spark because when I check my e-mail there are encouraging words from others. I Spark because I can read when others are struggling and offer encouraging words of my own. I Spark because it offers a community of experience, strength, hope, and acceptance. I Spark... because it works!

emoticon emoticon emoticon

To all my kindred spirits... Spark on!

  Member Comments About This Blog Post:

GROEDER 4/4/2011 8:08AM

    You summed it up perfectly!!!!
It works because of people like you who are out there helping us all!!!

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WATERMELLEN 4/4/2011 8:04AM

    Maintenance IS hard -- and I'm glad you're here doing that hard work of maintaining right along beside me!!

This is a terrific community of like-minded people: so glad that we've found it!!

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PENNYAN45 4/4/2011 1:00AM

    ...and I am so glad that you Spark!

You are a voice of persistence that is real.

You are intelligent and honest.

You are lighting up the path ahead.

Thank you.


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SUNNY1432 4/3/2011 8:36PM

    How True!! Now if I can just get to maintenance I would be happy!!
emoticon emoticon BLOG!!

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BUGGYS 4/3/2011 5:37PM

    Sparking makes us honest with ourselves...another great blog, Barb! emoticon

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MSLZZY 4/3/2011 2:06PM

    So very true! HUGS!

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SUNNY332 4/3/2011 1:44PM

    Maintenance is where the real work begins. Hang in there and know we appreciate you continuing with Spark.

Hugs, Sunny

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LOVE_2_LAUGH 4/3/2011 1:05PM

    This is why we all love SparkPeople!

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    VERY good blog! I plan to continue to spark on when I've reached my goal, too! emoticon

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KASEYCOFF 4/3/2011 11:22AM

    Ditto! 'cept I'm not at maintenance yet, lol...

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ANDI571 4/3/2011 10:46AM

    Spot on!!!!!

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SAMI199 4/3/2011 10:35AM

    I agree-I had lost a significant amount of weight years ago,only to gain it all back plus more!
I did not have Sparks then-But I do now-thank goodsness. My Sparkfriends are a blessing!

emoticon emoticon emoticon

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MNTWINSGAL 4/3/2011 10:32AM

    Amen, Barb!

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DEBRITA01 4/3/2011 10:24AM

    emoticonThis site is invaluable...truly a blessing! Keep Sparking... emoticon

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LJCANNON 4/3/2011 10:03AM

    There are days when~~even in Maintenance~~you are tempted to think 'One more helping won't matter'. But the truth is, it DOES matter. We make decisions every day that keep us on our Journey, whether we are still losing, or if we are Maintaining.
That is why I Keep On Sparking, and I think I always will.
emoticonAnd, No, being at our Goal Weight does make us 'Experts' nor does it mean we have all the answers.

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CONCHA77 4/3/2011 9:35AM

    "Spark On!"
Wouldn't want to be anywhere else on the journey. Keep on Sparking.

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REJ7777 4/3/2011 9:13AM

    I could relate to everything in your blog, except the part about being at maintenance. I don't want to think about where I'd be without SparkPeople and the support of my SparkFriends! emoticon

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LADYRH 4/3/2011 9:02AM

    emoticon We are all so lucky to have this site and the support it brings.

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Guiding principles

Friday, April 01, 2011

Some of you know I'm a self-help junkie... unfortunately with lousy follow-through, as a general rule. I'm not talking about the healthy habits thing just now, I'm talking about life in general.

I guess I could consider myself something of an absent-minded professor sort. My focus just isn't ON certain areas of life, until some event brings them into sharp focus. It was that way with the weight... I would focus on it for a period of time, and with great concentration and prioritization, it would come off. Then it would lose my interest and without some focus and priority, what would happen? Well, obviously, without the vigilance, the pounds would come back!

The same thing seems to happen with the clutter in my home, at my office, in my life. I am not paying attention, and then "company's coming" and I go nuts. I have long ceased trying to clean up for the kids, but still feel this when my siblings come to call. I just don't seem to be able to multitask as well as some folks I know.

So those of you who are looking at the progress photos on my page and saying "Wow, that's great"... there is a cost. And in my case the cost is that I'm maybe slipping in other areas. I have to wonder if I'll ever achieve that elusive "balance" before I die.

Enough whining! It's April! Wow, one month from today is that Half Marathon. But in the meantime, with the dog gone and kids out of the house, I'm thinking about goals and visions for the rest of my life... or at least for the next phase of my life.

And my current self-help book is all about organizing and the first point is to determine what the PURPOSE of the organizing effort is all about. (How Spark-like!) So... for the next few days, I'll be pondering that. I want my home to be functional and to support the life I desire without adding burdens. I know I need to keep these healthy habits, let's make sure the organization of my home supports that ongoing goal.

  Member Comments About This Blog Post:

ARTSY_CANDICE 4/3/2011 10:51AM

    Get outta my head emoticon I am the same way!! We just have to keep trying! emoticon

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SAMI199 4/3/2011 1:22AM

    "A clean house is a sign of a broken computer."

Seriously-you should be doing the things that are important to YOU-if you need to de-clutter in order to feel good-then out it goes-either way -it 's a hard task to maintain perfect balance in life...

emoticon(Balance-lol) emoticon

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SUNNY332 4/2/2011 10:32PM

    Oh my goodness, my husband says I just "float along" until there is company company and I turn into the "cleaning nazi" so guess what - I relate totally to this post.

I am doing better but need to really make some "to do lists" and get on it with a little more passion come Monday.


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777GRACE 4/2/2011 3:55PM

    Hey, are writing my thoughts?
You sound like me!
I think when we get to heaven, we will finally get it right!

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CHRYS13 4/2/2011 1:30PM

    I really do know what you're writing of....I don't know when my functional home atmosphere left, but it's gone! When I come home from work now, I shake my head and am thankful that no one is coming over! I know that if I can de-clutter and reorganize, many other aspects of my life will also fall into place. I guess we pull-up our panties and begin (LOL)
Best wishes.....we can do this!

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MSLZZY 4/1/2011 5:59PM

    I can relate, sister! HUGS!

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ANDI571 4/1/2011 2:52PM

    I found out several years ago, when I was doing good on my eating, my spending goes out of control, and vice versa. I am trying to work on both of those areas. Not always an easy thing to do.

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REJ7777 4/1/2011 1:16PM

    I know what you mean about balance, sometimes I feel like a juggler trying to keep all those balls in the air! And every once in awhile... rather, pretty often, I drop one. There's no doubt that having an uncluttered, organized home helps in every area of life. I already read, "Cluttered house, cluttered mind". I have so much trouble decluttering! But I have to do it. I wish you as much success in your organizing as you've had in your weight loss! emoticon

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Another month comes to an end...

Thursday, March 31, 2011

and, in my case, that means progress photos! I continue the series of "a year ago" and "today" on the main page.

I'm about 40 pages from the end of the book that wanted to keep my attention this morning and I'll be reading it on the treadmill in a bit.

Today's reverie has to do with rewards and treats. When does a treat cease to be a treat? In my case, it's when the treat is a daily expectation. I was thinking about this in relation to, of all things, a box of Girl Scout Cookies.

I purchased this box of cookies on Sunday. Just one. And my current favorite, the Caramel Delights... they have three things going for them: chocolate, caramel, and coconut! Two cookies make a 140 calorie serving. Surprisingly, I have had exactly four cookies since that time. This is so un-me! Well, un-old-me, anyway.

But if I am careful... and remain spiritually fit, and use them ONLY as a special treat after my treadmill session... they should last me a while. My goal and my resolution is to do exactly that. Savor them and make them last.

Hold me to it, OK? emoticon

  Member Comments About This Blog Post:

ANDI571 4/2/2011 10:46AM

    I like your statement of, When does a treat cease to be a treat. That is so true. Years ago when I did so good, I could buy a candy bar, cut it into 4 or 5 pieces and it would last awhile. Then I started eating the whole candy bar with the expectation of wanting another one. That statement is spot on.

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    Good for you, and congrats! It's life, not jail. Far better to learn enjoy treats sensibly within the controlled environment of SP than to try to deal with them after we're maintaining! emoticon

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FITFABJENN 3/31/2011 9:15PM

    Absolutely! Those cookies are hard to resist, so good going!

Have an awesome April!

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MSLZZY 3/31/2011 9:08PM

    I may just do that! Here's to success! HUGS!

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SAMI199 3/31/2011 8:27PM

    You are a strong lady-I like the definition a treat not being an expectation.

emoticon emoticon

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WATERMELLEN 3/31/2011 8:16PM

    I am all for "bribes" in moderation -- such as my bag of Lindt 85% cocoa dark chocolate squares, which I keep in my locker at the gym to reward me for working out!!

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FYRCOP 3/31/2011 7:44PM

    This much closer to summer!

Be careful of the cookies... the one's you described used to be my favorite!

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