History in the Making

As McCain chooses a female running mate, Sarah Palin, and the Democratic nominee is African-American, we are about to see history.

It is virtually guaranteed that there will be a minority elected to the White House, assuming that a third political party doesn’t suddenly gain rampant popularity by November.

Finally. A minority in the White House. Our melting pot has finally melted all the way to the top.

To me, the most refreshing part is that I won’t vote for the Democratic candidate because of his race, or for the McCain ticket because there’s a woman on it. I’ll vote for the ticket that I think most closely upholds what I believe to be valuable.

I wanted McCain to win the primary eight years ago, along with Bradley as the democratic candidate. At the time I got neither. I’ll be closely watching the race to ensure I’m making the right choice, of course, but for now, I’ll just relish that yes, Virginia, there will be a minority in our highest offices.

Meme Girls are Easy

From Amy.

1. My uncle once: had Thanksgiving dinner wearing only his swimsuit
2. Never in my life: have I been to Africa
3. When I was five: I was shy
4. High school was: not my most mature (ugh)
5. I will never forget: getting stalked
6. Once I met: a celebrity at the height of his fifteen minutes
7. There’s this girl I know: who hates me and I don’t know why. It hurts
8. Once, at a bar: I danced until 6AM
9. By noon, I’m usually: over half done with work
10. Last night: I tried to put a shelf together only to find it was damaged in shipping…grr
11. If only I had: studied more in college
12. Next time I go to church: will be Saturday with Ainsley
13. What worries me most: is when people demean me or others because they have faith
14. When I turn my head left I see: the other upstairs laptop
15. When I turn my head to the right I see: a bunch of boxes of junk that need to be eBayed
16. You know I’m lying when: you’re psychic
17. What I miss most about the Eighties is: enough time to listen to every pop song I wanted

18. If I were a character in Shakespeare I’d be: English
19. By this time next year: I’ll be tired again from Gen Con
20. A better name for me would be: shorter. I have four names
21. I have a hard time understanding: people who think their way is the only way
22. If I ever go back to school, I’ll: poke my eye out. No way
23. You know I like you if: I ask you to live near me
24. If I ever won an award, the first person I would thank would be: Carlton
25. Take my advice, never: let a relationship define you
26. My ideal breakfast is: black coffee and a jalapeno bagel, preferably on Saturday morning
27. A song I love but do not have is: Anything newer than 2006. I just haven’t gotten around to purchasing much
28. If you visit my hometown, I suggest you: see the gorgeous Chihuly chandelier
29. Why won’t people: be nice to each other
30. If you spend a night at my house: I’ll make you a nice meal the night before
31. I’d stop my wedding for: not having my parents there
32. The world could do without: hate
33. I’d rather lick the belly of a cockroach than: ew.
34. My favorite blonde(s) is/are: my sister
35. Paper clips are more useful than: nothing. Binder clips rule
36. If I do anything well it’s: host
37. I can’t help but: give dirty looks to people who annoy me
38. I usually cry: when I have a migraine
39. My advice to my child/nephew/niece: please be nice to each other
40. And by the way: will you move in with me?

Three in Two

This is an update on the last weight loss post, Four in Three.  I’m still eight pounds from goal, but three pounds from my short-term goal. It’s time for pictures.

Me at about 218 pounds. Seriously, this is obviously not all weight gained for pregnancy. I remember that day was the best I’d felt in a month. I’m wearing lipstick and standing up! We were going to dinner with friends. My self-esteem was terrible. My arms look like sausages. I bought this dress at a regular, non-maternity store because most maternity clothes are very cheaply made and I wanted one or two things that didn’t fall apart. Why did I buy a cap-sleeve dress? Who knows. The pattern did do a good job of hiding everything else.

Me two days ago. I think the biggest difference, other than the obvious BABY that’s missing, is my neck. Oh, and my watch now fits. I also stopped wearing makeup, but that’s not so much about my weight, is it?

I noticed that my bicep muscles are more toned. Most moms can attest to the toning that happens from picking up a kid over and over.

The dress was purchased to hide my growing rear, so it’s hard to tell that it’s smaller, but trust me, it is. I can fit into my pre-baby pants. The waistband are still a bit tight but I don’t know if my stomach muscles will ever be that toned again.

Having been thin most of my life made me less appreciative of the struggles of losing weight. I battled 10 pounds that kept wanting to creep onto my frame, but that was it. Now I know that it takes a lot of discipline to stay on plan. My “diet” wasn’t really a “diet” so much as a permanent change to my eating habits. I knew that if I purchased pre-made meals, I’d just go back to old habits after the diet ended. I used to eat, as a snack on a Saturday night:

  • 1/2 to one package of chocolate chip cookie dough- with a spoon
  • An entire bag of sour cream and cheddar potato chips
  • An entire container of sour cream for dipping the chips

A new snack is:

  • A piece of fruit or cheese

A typical old dinner was:

  • A ten- to fourteen- ounce steak or pork roast
  • Homemade macaroni and cheese with extra cheese
  • A dessert of sour cream or icing on a spoon (at least ten spoonsful)

A new dinner is:

  • Beans or lentils
  • Whole grain rice
  • Some sort of green vegetable cooked in canola/olive/flaxseed oil

So there you go. If I can change my diet, anyone can.

Hot or NOT

Let’s all face it, people, I used to think I was all that and a bag of chips. OK, not celebrity/model hot, but a nice, solid, midwest-girl 7 out of 10.

As I aged and starting seeing gray hairs at my temple and freckles/wrinkles at my eyes, I celebrated instead of bemoaning. All the years after 30 seemed like something to look forward to having, not to dread.

Then I had a kid. I packed on 50, 60, 70 pounds and it certainly wasn’t all for the baby. My heart was struggling to push blood through my newfound fat. And once the baby was out and I started trying to lose the weight, I struggled with diet and exercise while my world was turned upside down. I looked in the mirror and didn’t like it. I was happy with my self but not happy with my appearance.

I’ve lost nearly all of that 70 pounds now. But I’m not that pretty girl anymore. I’ve gone without makeup many days. It’s not that I need it as a mask; rather, applying it is more of a statement that I think my face is worth presenting. My once-taut stomach is snapping back to being a curvy waist, but the skin is dappled in cellulite. My pants fit but my shirts still don’t. I go clothes/shoe shopping and buy nothing because I simply don’t feel I deserve it.

In the past couple of weeks, several friends have commented that I look good. But I don’t see it. I see a girl who needs a shower and a nap. I always wondered if weight loss success stories ever felt the confidence that we always-slender people did. I now feel that the answer is no. The weight lost didn’t magically mend my beauty. I feel great about my eating and exercising choices, just not my face or body.

So where did my confidence go? Would I want my daughter to have these feelings of worth tied to beauty, or in my case, lack thereof? Of course not.

The nice thing is that even though my confidence in my physical self is gone, I still feel that I have other abilities worth noticing. I’m compassionate and intelligent. But I don’t feel pretty enough.

Cranky 5

Trying to find gratefulness even though I’m not really in the mood!

Ainsley’s giggle
Sharing opinions with someone whom I respect but with whom I disagree
Fizzy drinks of all kinds
Air conditioning (even if it makes me feel planet-guilty)