Thursday, August 30, 2007
If you ever undergo light abdominal surgery, listen to the nurse and take the rest of the week off of work (especially when you're carrying 20 sick days). Also, be advised that none of your clothes will fit due to the fact that they pumped CO2 into your belly. I have no idea how long that lasts.
Yes, I made it through the day, but barely. I think they removed all my stamina while they were in there.
Tuesday, August 28, 2007
It was mostly uneventful. Everyone there was really nice. The woman who did the IV said she wished everyone's was as easy as mine. The anesthesiologist sent me to Hawaii. I woke up groggy, but otherwise feeling fine. The nurses said I looked great.
My beau helped me get home and we settled in for a movie. About 20 minutes in, I couldn't stay awake anymore so I went to bed for a sound four hours sleep.
Upon waking, I had my first meal of the day, caught up on email, watched the rest of the show I fell asleep during last night.
I took some prescribed ibuprofen. I felt pretty good. About an hour later, the pain hit. Nothing extraordinary but enough to convince me to take the super painkillers they prescribed.
My tummy looks funny from being blown up with CO2. My shoulder hurts from the CO2 and the incision sites are a bit sore, but mostly I feel a lot better than I thought I would.
The doctor told my beau she didn't see anything exciting, but she took some tissue samples so we'll see how that turns out. She did warn me that they might find nothing. I have mixed feelings about it. Mostly I'm glad because it means there is no serious problem with my insides. A part of me wonders how I could experience such incredible pain and still be healthy. I don't think the doctor really believes the extent of the pain. Thing is, I'm no wuss when it comes to pain. Trust me it's there and if you don't believe me you can ask my coworkers who have witnessed the difference between pain free Poor_Statue and pain-full Poor_Statue.
Anyway it's over. I'll be taking one more day out of work and then I'll go back. One of the nurses told me I'd need a whole week, but according to my discharge papers, I only need one day. I think I'll be able to resume my exercise program fairly quickly, too. Of course, I'll start off slow, but I don't want to abandon it altogether because I've been doing really great.
I'm off to go rest again. The whole thing definitely made me sleepy.
Monday, August 27, 2007
I was pretty busy all afternoon and after school getting ready for the week. I created all the lesson plans and made all the copies needed for both math classes for the week. I was glad that new teacher was willing to work together though she described some awkwardness with the old math teacher. Hopefully that won't continue.
The reason I needed to be so prepared is because my laparoscopy is tomorrow. Hopefully, it will be short and sweet, but just in case they find something unexpected, I made sure everything was all set at work for the rest of the week.
I'm not thrilled about missing days in the first week of school, but I'm sure it'll end up okay. As for the mini-surgery, I'm feeling okay about it. My beau is less okay with it. He plans to pace in the waiting room for all the hours it takes.
In the meantime, I filled up my belly for the last time pre-surgery and am planning to watch TV for the rest of the night.
Sunday, August 26, 2007
I'm feeling more enthusiastic than I have in years, though I have slacked a bit this weekend.
I went in for a few extra days to organize my classroom. The teacher I mentored last year joined me for a shopping trip. We got lots of pretty things and found an awesome sale-10 for $1-on one subject notebooks at Target.
I've tried lots of different routine things in my classroom. I do a daily problem of the day which the kids used to do on small paper. Two years ago, I got little notebooks which worked a lot better. I've also had classroom binders which I loved, but I haven't found them cheap enough to continue. This year I'm going to try a larger notebook and folder. My plan this year is to have the kids do all of their classwork in the notebook and use the folder for important handouts. I always file graded work separately.
If you're wondering why I buy the stuff, it's because I teach in a fairly poor city. My school is really good about supplying things, but large orders would require a little more effort. They don't consult teachers for the supplies list given to parents so I can't ask the kids to get it beforehand and don't expect families to be very happy if I add a request after school starts. Plus, it's fun to go school shopping and I'm able to get matching supplies.
A few of the teachers from my workshop gave some really negative feedback. I was upset about it for a bit and all prepared to post about it, but I'm over it now and most of the feedback was extremely positive. I guess that the expected resistance was more passive aggressive- they participated without comment, but tried to slam me after the fact. The principal's response was that he attended part of it and that I was better than many professionals so he's not worried about a few naysayers. Just to back that up, I was invited to participate in the administrative meeting to plan our professional development this year and expect that my input will continue to be sought. I will win over those reluctant teachers.
They hired a new math teacher. I have not met her yet, but I hear she has absolutely no clue about teaching math. Until I meet her, I don't know how to feel about it. It could turn out that she is an eager sponge who is willing to work with me to plan lessons. Or she could be completely incompetent and I may be expected to pick up the slack. There are some other complications. One is that she met with the old math teacher to plan the beginning of the year (why they didn't arrange a meeting with me, I have no idea) so that old math teacher is trying to get her replacement to follow her crazy ordering of topics. Our skills sequence was the beginning of our inability to work together and while I won't get into a discussion of who has the best way (I do! :)), I will say that it doesn't make sense to start this new teacher off already teaching things in a different order than me. I want to work with her! The other complication is that I'll only be returning to school for one day before I'm out for my laparoscopy. I know, it's wonderful to be out the first week of school.
It looks like this will be an interesting year all around. I just hope I can keep up with all the things I have going on.
Friday, August 24, 2007
1. Keep my cars as long as I can. I do buy new, but I buy an economical car with a great record and aim to keep it ten years minimum.
2. I rarely go on vacation and when I do, I visit family so that I only pay the cost of the plane ticket (both of my Florida trips this year were paid for by someone else).
3. I refuse to buy bottled water. I drink tap water at home and at work. I recently revised my rule at bars only. I will now switch to water if I'm out at a bar.
4. I rarely go out and when I do, I usually go to free or inexpensive places- that includes movies, dinners, theater, amusement parks, etc.
5. When I rent, I don't look at the maximum I can afford, I look at the minimum I can pay while meeting my needs. Because of my reasonable rent, my beau and I should be able to save for a house this year.
6. Every time I've had a loan, I've rounded the monthly bill up to the nearest hundred and paid that every month. I usually end up paying the loans in half the time and save on interest.
7. Prior to my move here, I earned money by using a credit card that rewarded me with savings bonds. I paid it in full every month and over two years, I probably made $400 in bonds. I will confess that I've probably broken even since then because I've been carrying a large balance since I moved.
8. I use CFL bulbs.
9. I unplug many of my appliances when not in use.
10. I never buy clothes at full price.
11. I think this one is cheating, but several folks on the list used it: I wear very little makeup. I don't wear makeup every day and when I do, it's usually just eyeliner, mascara, and lipstick. I think it's cheating because not everyone is able to embrace my minimal beauty regimen due to work, etc.
12. Along the same lines, overall my maintenance costs are low: I don't use any hair products; I don't color, straighten, or perm; I don't blow-dry my hair, I let it air dry; I never get manicures or pedicures; I rarely paint my nails; I use very few products, and buy the cheapest most of the time. Compared to the average woman, I'm sure I save a lot.
13. I buy generic medicines and other things where the difference doesn't matter.
14. Lots of folks said they save by not having magazine subscriptions. I save by having them (but I do weed out ones I no longer read). A subscription costs $8-$15 per year which is the cost of 2-3 months on the stands. I knew that I would treat myself to a magazine at least twice a year so I subscribe instead. I do go without them and then figure out which ones I end up buying regularly before I commit.
15. I make it a habit to avoid buying snacks and drinks at work or on the road. That includes coffee and vending machine items. I bring my own or have it at home or go without. When I really want to buckle down, I don't buy any food or drink (including dinners out) on the road. I've had times when I allowed myself only the change generated from neccessity purchases to pay for those treats. This strategy made it much easier to stick with my no buying food and drink rule.
16. For high ticket items, I buy only when neccessary and only what I need. Eleven years ago, I bought a small TV/VCR which remained my only TV until I lived with other people. I didn't own a DVD player until years after the rest of the world, and I was able to get one for $30. When I decided I was finally ready for an mp3 player, I researched and then bought a first generation iPod shuffle because I didn't need the added features of the more expensive players. I could go on and on. I'm stingiest with big ticket items, and am often the last to own the latest technology.
17. Before cable internet, I went without cable TV. Now it comes with the internet, but I have the cheapest package.
18. I don't need the best of anything. Every item in my home gets used until it can no longer be used: electronics, towels, dishes, clothes, shoes, furniture. If it still works, I don't need a new one.
19. I've never bought a purse or bag for more than $20.
20. I don't have a landline.
21. I buy my good shoes at outlet stores to get the quality for a better price. Any shoes that are not daily wear or are a weird style, I buy at whatever cheap place I can or at a significant markdown. I'm not much of a shoe person anyway.
22. I'm organized so I don't lose things. Every chapstick I've owned has been used up to the end. The same goes for all of those other things that need to be replaced because they were lost. I don't lose things.
23. I buy used textbooks.
24. I've never paid for a gym membership. Prior to my treadmill purchase, I used my town and my own body to get all the exercise I needed.
25. I use a free blog service. :)
Phew, that got harder at the end. One of the posts I read suggested a 25 ways we waste money follow-up. I think I will follow up with a post about the things I don't save money on.
Edited to add: I just read another person's entry and realized I missed two big money savers: I rarely run an air conditioner in the summer and I don't turn my heat above 64 in the winter. The heating saves me about $200 a month in the winter.
You have the option of making it public or private. I'm choosing to keep my account private, but if you were working with a buddy, it might be fun to check each other.
I'm trying to be honest on the food part which meant admitting the entire bag (4 servings worth) of BBQ Fritos I ate yesterday while shopping with a friend. I've never kept a food journal, but I've certainly read how helpful it is for losing weight/improving nutrition. I can see why. There's nothing like seeing the 500+ calories for my Fritos next to the rest of my far more reasonable food choices. I can see how it would make me think twice about my daily food choices.
I know a couple of my readers are interested in getting healthier and thought this site was a great, easy resource to track your progress. And no, I don't do paid reviews. This is all me.
Wednesday, August 22, 2007
What does your drawing say about YOU?
If you try this, focus only on the three things they mention or the analysis will be difficult.
Not feeling so hot today so I'm planning to curl up with TV. I did run today, and I did a bit of cleaning up.
Today was our classroom day at school. I stayed til five and really redid my room. I'll be back there tomorrow to do my planning and take care of a few more things.
Monday, August 20, 2007
- My weekend class had lots of great information, but the pace wasn't great. Sunday was much better. We did a lot more activities which helped. The work load is quite reasonable, too, even with the weird due dates.
- My morning presentation went incredibly well. The feedback was excellent. I didn't get any of the resistance we'd anticipated. In fact, the teachers said they wanted more. It was very rewarding. I presented to the K-2 teachers in the morning which is definitely not a grade level I'm an expert in, but my research paid off because all the teachers said how nice it was to do something they could actually use.
- My afternoon presentation went well, but I know that the teachers didn't get much out of it. I met the objective, but it wasn't useful enough. I also saw some of the negativity I've heard about, though they all did participate. I got an awesome compliment though. I had a couple of science teachers in my group because of the rest of the schedule, and one said he learned more math in the first half hour of the workshop than he ever did in school.
- The two teambuilders I ran were also mostly successful. The first confirmed some things I already knew and the second was a lot of fun.
- I probably won't have to work with the math teacher I don't like anymore because she's taking an administrative position. Yay!!!! It's actually a really good role for her and I think our team will be much stronger and more positive without her.
- I didn't have time to work out Friday and Saturday, my beau suggested I take the weekend off. I didn't want to skip all three days so I was determined to exercise Sunday. By the end of Sunday, I noticed I was feeling pretty down and irritable so I had more reason to exercise. It was rough. I was so tired frrom the weekend, but I stuck it out for a full workout. Today, I also made it a priority. Both days, I did slightly less challenging workouts, but I did it. I'm giving myself the rest of the evening off from any sort of responsibility, but I'm glad I'm getting in the habit of doing it no matter what.
- Tomorrow should be a more relaxing day.
Sunday, August 19, 2007
Friday, August 17, 2007
I also managed to watch the last two nights of So You Think You Can Dance. The finale was amazing. I was so glad Sabra won, and I was happy for Sarah because she was featured in so many of the judges favorite dances.
I got up early today so I could finish my work before heading to the doctors. I emailed all the documents to work and headed out.
My first doctors visit was pleasant and I loved everyone there.
My second visit was terrible. They had a flood so they moved their offices upstairs today which means everything is a bit chaotic. They couldn't find the movie I was supposed to watch, and then I waited in the room for almost an hour for the doctor.
After twenty minutes, I start to lose it. I paced. I tried to read a magazine. I finally opened the door to find out if they'd forgotten me. About fifteen minutes after that, the doctor came in. Because she had no movie, she drew fun pictures of what she'll be doing to me.
I had to have lab work done and of course the lab was backed up so I waited for that, too. I like the lab technician though. She's drawn my blood about six times in the last few months and I ,always enjoy her.
After my longer-than-expected visits, I headed to work to print the documents I needed and make copies...
...except they're doing maintenance on the computers so I can't access my email or the internet.
I copied what I had with me and spent a bit with the paper cutter preparing materials. Then I scrambled home to try to print the documents and get back to school before they close for the day.
Of course when I got home, my dying computer decided not to start up.
I pulled out my laptop to access the files from my sent email and put them on a jump drive when I remembered that the school cut off jump drive access this summer.
Luckily, I did get my main computer running so I finally printed my stuff and ran back to school to getmy copies made.
After that, I did a few last minute things for my class tonight.
I didn't exercise. I haven't eaten anything besides a bowl of cereal this morning and some little tomatoes from my plants. And I'm dressed like a bum. But as soon as I hit publish, I'm off to school. I'll pick up some dinner on the way and worry about the rest of it tomorrow.
Thursday, August 16, 2007
Wednesday, August 15, 2007
I definitely didn't feel like exercising, but I made a new playlist on iTunes (you can plug your iPod into the treadmill, but I haven't bothered because my computer is behind it). Then I got started.
I did the program I recorded yesterday. I was pleased to realize how challenging it was and the new music helped. After 25 minutes of it I switched to manual mode and did another fifteen minutes- another steady run and then a cool-down.
So far, so good. I was pretty sore yesterday and I felt it during my time today.
The real test will be this weekend. It's a school weekend and normally I do absolutely nothing on my school weekends, but I'm determined to stick with it for at least two of the three days.
I can't decide if I want to schedule in a day of rest. Right now I prefer not to, a decision the experts support. Once school starts, there will be days that I just won't be able to work it in. I would do it first thing in the morning because that fits my schedule the best, but I doubt the downstairs neighbors would appreciate the AM noise.
Tuesday, August 14, 2007
My next goal is to make an iTunes playlist just for my treadmill time. Nothing kills the mood like a slow song coming on.
Monday, August 13, 2007
If only he had switched his two solo numbers. The one with the mannequin was really weird and lame, but the Zoot Suit Riot one he did tonight was excellent. It was the first time he did well on a solo so I knew it was only a matter of time before he went. It's just that he's so amazing in the partner dances.
I wanted to see him dance again.
In other bad news, Sideswipe beat out the Calypso Tumblers. What is the world coming to?
We had a somewhat odd visit and dinner at his brother's house that night. I kicked the brother's girlfriend's brother's butt (got that?) at Guitar Hero. I think I embarrassed him a little.
We spent the next day just the two of us at Magic Kingdom. We were exhausted and hot by the time we met up with his parents for dinner, but we did a lot and had lots of fun. I liked the Monster Show and the Buzz Lightyear ride, but the Stitch Ride was awful for me. I'm not a big fan of sitting in the dark wondering when the next loud noise or space invading effects are coming. I scrouched down and closed my eyes for most of it. Yes, I will go on any roller coaster in the world, but the kiddie ride is too scary for me.
His parents flew home that night but we weren't leaving until the next night. Two days in the Florida heat was enough so we went to the movies (saw the Simpsons) and then went to the airport early and sat at a bar for awhile.
Our flight ended up being delayed. Unfortunately, we were in C boarding on Southwest because we didn't have access to a printer and I guess our early airport arrival wasn't quite early enough. Luckily we were first in line and ended up getting the last two seats together- last row of the plane of course.
It was a pretty uncomfortable flight. My beau always lets me sit in the window seat and he takes the middle, but I insisted he take the window seat this time because I know how much the middle seat stinks. I shouldn't have bothered. My beau is aggressive enough to take the armrests, but I am not so I had the guy in the third seat's elbows in my space for the whole trip. Luckily I was able to smoosh into my beau a bit. The thing is, I can't stand being so close to a stranger so I end up losing more than just the armrest space in my effort to sit far enough away for my comfort.
We got home late and spent the next couple of days relaxing.
It was a wonderful vacation. And our luggage did make it back home.
In the interest of full disclosure and because I review this timeline often, I give you a history of my weight:
Age 12: At 100 pounds, I was easily the heaviest girl in the class. Back then, I was considered an early bloomer.
Freshman year of high school: I don't know my exact weight but I would guess I was pretty close to where I am today. I was still carrying a bit of puberty chubbiness.
Senior year of high school (1995): 111 lb; Other than freshman year, I was pretty much between 110-115 throughout high school.
May 1996: 120- This was what I weighed at my military physical, a year into college.
May 1997: 130ish- I gained ten pounds between enlistment and the end of basic training and AIT. That was when I learned that intense exercise makes me bulk up.
May 1998: 144- Once all that fitness wore off, I gained a bit and stayed in the lower 140s for the rest of college.
May 2000: 114 lb- I was very lucky after college. With no effort on my part, I went back to my high school weight. I was still in the national guard so I was exercising, but not much more than I was in college. I started exercising more after I lost all the weight. This is the time that I was in the best shape of my life. I maintained that weight until my pregnancy.
February 2002: I weighed 120 at my first prenatal visit. I was two months along, and I definitely showed to anyone who saw me regularly.
September 2002: I weighed 154 when my daughter was born.
November 2002: I weighed 137 at my first postpartum checkup. I actually would have been satisfied to stay at this weight.
March 2003: My doctor switched my meds when I hit 150 lb.
December 2003-present: By the end of 2003, I had stopped taking any kind of meds. I was able to lose some of the extra weight and have fluctuated between 137 and 143 since then. I realize that six pounds doesn't seem like much, but it actually makes me hover between the high end of a normal BMI and an overweight BMI. I can tell the difference in my clothes, in my comfort level, and in my energy. I rarely weigh myself so it isn't seeing the weight that makes me feel different. I can always tell by how my clothes fit and occassional doctors visits confirm the weights. Right now I'm at the high end (no thanks to my awesome vacation): my pants just fit and some of my shirts are no longer wearable. I carry most of the weight in my middle. My hips are pretty nonexistent so the extra belly shows.
I'd prefer to hover under 137. I don't really expect to end up under 125 and would be beyond happy if I made it under 130. Ideally, I'd like to end up at 125, which I think is a good weight for my height and body type. When I weigh less than 120, my friends and family start to comment that I look sick.
I have my yearly exam mid-September so I'll update my weight then. That gives me about a month with my treadmill and will hopefully help me get back down to 137. I usually lose weight in the fall anyway because as a teacher, I'm far more active in the fall than I am all summer.
After that, everything else will be a bonus.
I decided to try a different program today. This time the program was too hard. I made it through the first 20 minutes and then I had to keep lowering the speed and incline every time it changed. This time, I had run out of energy to run for more than a minute or two straight. I did a few minutes less than yesterday, but I definitely pushed myself- a little too much I think.
You can record two programs of your own so I think I'll end up doing that until my fitness level increases. I've determined that I can increase my speed or my incline but can't handle much of both at the same time. I think I'll try to do the inclines at a brisk walk and keep the solid running at a lower incline.
Right now I'm soaked and beat.
Sunday, August 12, 2007
One of my motivations for exercising again was that I really missed the healthiness I felt when I became pregnant with my daughter. I was probably in the best shape of my life. I felt strong and energetic. I knew excercising helped with that. I also used exercise to keep my mood stable. Every professional out there agrees that regular exercise has as much or more benefit than antidepressents and I am definitely someone who prefers to be drug free.
Back then, my favorite exercise was running. I'd never liked it much before. I ran track in high school in order to stay in shape for soccer but I hated it. It was my time in the army that helped me enjoy running. I learned during basic training that just when I thought I couldn't take another step, we'd hit the halfway point and I always made it back. I liked the rhythm. I liked the sweat. I liked the exhaustion.
I used to run in the city where I live. I always ran the same route, about two miles total, nothing extraordinary but enough to feel good.
My recent exercise has really made me miss those days. I've found myself with the urge to run. I've tried to start running again since my daughter was born, but it never works. I'm too out of shape and there's never really a good season to take up running here. I had hoped that starting with other exercise would help me get to the point where I could run again.
I just spent a week on vacation and I saw many people out running on the hotel grounds. It really made me miss it again. I've been toying with the idea of buying a treadmill- something I've always wanted but never had the space or money to invest in.
When I got home from vacation, I had three checks waiting- all the extra money I earned this summer teaching and planning professional development. This is the money that pays my car insurance, covers my yearly dental or eye needs, and allows me to go on vacation. I made a lot of extra this year so I decided I could buy a treadmill.
I did some research online yesterday and then after finding a good one in my price range, I took my beau out to see if we could find any good sales. To make room, we grabbed a bunch of stuff for goodwill and headed out. Next to goodwill was a store we hadn't known about- a Sears outlet store for appliances.
They had a bunch of treadmills. I looked up all the information on the internet to help me pick the best one for the price. I ended up with a NordicTrack C2400, a treadmill listed at $1300 which I got for just over $500.
I definitely don't have room for it in the apartment. Sheer force got it up the stairs and once in, there is no way it will make it into any room other than the first.
But it's awesome.
I used it today and I feel so good. I was able to run longer, faster, and harder than I expected to, so I feel like I really got a good workout. I just hope it isn't too noisy for the people downstairs who were kind enough to help us get it into the apartment.
Thursday, August 02, 2007
2. Last night I got proof that I've been working too much. I went out to karaoke and filled in my full name on the karaoke slip.
3. I'm in a lot of pain today.
4. I'm hoping that all the work I put in this week won't go to waste. My meeting with the principal had to be postponed so I turned in all the stuff without meeting with him. I'm afraid it'll get lost amoung the many tons of paperwork that crosses his desk every day.
5. I made plans with a friend to give my beau and I a ride to the airport today, but she has apparantly fallen off the face of the earth. We need to leave in three hours and I don't know if she's still going to bring us.
6. My beau's grandpa is awesome. He's going to come water our tomatoes every day while we're gone.
7. I like the new drunk driving commercials. The message is that it's easy to tell when you've had way too much to drink, but not so easy to tell when you've had one too many, so don't take the risk. I find them to be very powerful.
8. I love Pasha.
9. I talked to lots of new people last night. Special thanks to my (male) friend's crush for being really nice to me.
10. I found a new distraction. Really good online jigsaw puzzles.
I'll be away for the next week and may or may not check in while I'm gone. Take good care of the place while I'm gone. See you next week!
Wednesday, August 01, 2007
The top ten in order of how much I love them:
1. My favorite: the ventriloquist. The number one spot was tough, but his acts make me smile the whole way through.
2. Butterscotch: I've loved her since day one.
3. The Calypso Tumblers: Great backstory, great act.
4. The Glamazons: I've liked them more every time. Awesome moves, great attitudes.
5. Cas Healy: The only singer that really wows me. He puts all the American Idol guys to shame.
6. The sewer guy: Gorgeous. Great smile. I love his new versions of chick power ballads. Lots of talent, but I wonder if he can do anything besides sing ballads.
7. The young girl: Nice voice, but I'm just not into her.
8. The big family band: Love the violins, hate the singing. I'm also put off by their whole "we're the perfect family" thing.
9. Sideswipe: I would have liked them more, but their anger this week was frightening and I agree that adding the kids was a mistake. The moves were awesome and the kids were so talented, but it felt like a ploy for votes.
10. Terry Pratchett (the cruise ship guy): I must be listening to a different performance, because I thought he was absolutely awful. The song he sang is one of my favorites, but he could barely hit the notes. In fact it sounded like he can only sing a few notes. There are a million better singers.
I could have done without all of my bottom four acts. This is who I would have liked to see more of instead:
1. The cool teen retro band. I really liked them. The judges were right that they had lost some of their oomph, but they are worlds more talented than some of the others that made it.
2. The Russian Pet Show people: I liked their homeless clown story and we never got to see their other acts. I wish they'd gotten another chance.
3. Boy Shakira: For me, it's always been a bit like watching a train wreck, but he is so entertaining.
4. The Magician who didn't make it: Not the creepy guy who completely blew his chance, but the sexy younger guy that they cut before the top twenty.
I've been viewing the show thinking about the prize: a Vegas show. With that in mind, I wish there was more variety in the top ten. There were a lot of talented groups during the auditions that I could see doing a Vegas show.
Anyone else watching?