The Ongoing Adventures of Naked Girl

The story of my quest to look good naked -- really good.

Wednesday, March 30, 2005

Wet Wednesday

Thunder, lightening, rain....ahhh, the joys of spring in the mid-west. It actually felt muggy out earlier, but now it's chilly out and 43 degrees (yesterday at this time it was 69). Can't complain too much, I guess. At least the storm happened after I got to work and it had passed by the time I left. I just would like to see it stabilize a bit so I know what to wear.

Food has been good the last few days. I probably overdid it on Easter -- a big brunch and dinner and no exercise. I did get on the treadmill yesterday and that felt good. I need to be spot on from now until next Wednesday when I have a doctor's appointment. I'm kind of dreading it since it will obviously be with someone new, but maybe she can offer a fresh look on my thyroid. I had my first appointment with a new chiropractor. It was interesting because at this first one, he doesn't adjust. I had x-rays and a few other tests so it will be interesting what he tries to "sell" me on when I see him on Friday. I just had so much trust with my chiropractor in LA, that anything different just seems off.

I do have Friday off, and that looks like it will be my only time off between now and June. I need to get my nails done and I might be inspired to start my spring cleaning. I will be working for a few hours on Saturday, mostly spring cleaning there as well (the supply rooms & cabinets are a mess). No other big plans pending, so it might be another weekend for recharging my batteries. I think the weather is supposed to be nice, so I'm sure a long dog walk will be in order.

Tomorrow will be busy at work since I'll be off on Friday. The last few days have been really hectic, but it makes the days go by fast and I feel like I'm getting things accomplished. The real test will be Monday when two different groups of new hires start and they try to log into the phones and computers. If that doesn't go well, I will have wished I took Monday off.

Sunday, March 27, 2005

Signs of Spring

The calls of migrating Canadian Geese are now replaced with a cacophany of of chirps and cheeps.

The roar of snowblowers are now roars of motorcycles.

Hockey pucks and sticks are put away in favor of basketballs and baseballs.

Instead of sliding down hills on sleds, kids now barrel down the street on bikes and skateboards.

We shut the door to keep out flies instead of the cold.

I mop up muddy paw prints instead of snowy puddles.

Having lived in California almost all of my life, I never really paid attention to the changing seasons, mostly because the only way I knew the difference between the last day of winter and the first day of spring was by looking at the calendar. I really feel like I have moved from the hibernation of winter into the early newness of spring. The warmth of the sun makes me happy. Even more so than at the start of a new calendar year, I feel a strong sense of rebirth, and positive change.

Things may not be perfect as far as my diet, but I'm making strides each and every day. I'm starting to make healthier choices -- a side salad instead of chips -- without agonizing over the decision. I automatically pull water out of the fridge instead of a soda. I suggest we take the dogs for a walk. I don't always make the right choices -- I did help Don eat the contents of his Easter baskets, but we didn't eat everything in one day.

I may not see the result of my spring start on the scale this month. But it's coming. I can feel it.

Friday, March 25, 2005


I love to read. Just ask the movers who had to pack and move my boxes and boxes of books. I read pretty much anything. I have my favorite authors, of course. Some are truly great reads, some are guilty pleasures.

However, I have noticed that I seem to be missing some very classic reads. For example, it has recently come to my attention that I have not read "Pride & Prejudice," "A Tale of Two Cities," "Animal Farm," etc. It amazes me that I missed some of the major literature offerings. I remember reading "The Great Gatsby," "A Catcher in the Rye," and "To Kill A Mockingbird." What the heck was I reading in high school?? (OK, truth be known, I was reading a lot of Judith Krantz and Danielle Steele).

So my question is, what classic would you recommend for my reading list?

Tuesday, March 22, 2005

The Good, The Bad and The Ugly

The Good
Refused an offer of Thin Mints
Refused an offer of Cheetos
Ate my breakfast and lunch as planned
Drank 60 ounces of water
Passed a bowl of potato chips 4 times without taking any

The Bad
On the fifth pass, ate two potato chips
Ate hard candy (5 Tootsie rolls, 4 toffees, 4 fruit)
Ate a piece of homemade fudge, would have had second piece if offered
Ate all of the above in lieu of an apple I had at my desk

The Ugly
Came home to an Easter Basket from The Popcorn Factory and promptly ate half of a rabbit cookie and 1 small chocolate chip cookie, and there is still popcorn (3 flavors), pretzels and chocolate eggs
I keep putting off getting on the treadmill in favor of blogging, cooking dinner, playing with the dogs, etc.

Onward, and upward....

I did finally get my act together and ordered a Honeybaked Ham for Easter. Now the question is, what do I serve for sides. My scalloped potatoes suck -- for some reason I've never been able to master that dish. I can make killer mashed potatoes in a variety of flavors, but I do that so often, I want to try something else. Ideas??

The next few weeks should be intersting from a diet/food plan stand point. We are bringing in lunch 3 days between next Monday and 4/15 (tax day), breakfast 5 times (including 2 days of Krispy Kremes that I must pick up and commute 25 minutes with), and snacks for 7 days. If today is any indication of how I handle temptation, I'm not so sure I'm going to do so well.

A brief note on the Terri Schiavo case, since it seems that almost every blog is touching on it. My heart goes out to the family, but I'm a realist and don't think she knows what is going on or will recover. I'm worried about the politics behind the federal government stepping in to try and overturn the state's decision. I wish it hadn't gotten this far, and I hope she is able to go peacefully. This just brings home why we need Living Wills, and Don and I will be doing ours shortly. Luckily, Don and my parents know my wishes and I don't think they would have this kind of fight.

Off to make dinner. Stove top chicken pot pie with lots of veggies. Good comfort food for my mood.

Sunday, March 20, 2005

Spring Is In The Air

Ahhh, the first day of spring. Who knew that spring in Minnesota meant 7 inches of snow on the ground? We got hit on Friday, but it's been clear the last two days, so everything is starting to melt (again). The temps are still below normal, and we're only getting up to the mid 30s for the next few days. I'll be glad when it's in the 50s and 60s for awhile. At least it's sunny out, which seems to make a big difference in my mood.

We've had a quiet weekend. Don hasn't had to work (yeah!) and he's been resting/relaxing and just trying to recoup from the last several weeks. We've done some small things around the house -- laundry, bill paying, grocery shopping, etc. but nothing too strenuous, although I did help clean off the driveway and sidewalk yesterday. Don used the snowblower for the third time this winter, and I followed behind getting all the stuff he couldn't get. My back and arms are a little sore, but I took a long, hot bubble bath last night and that seemed to help.

Mostly what we've been doing is watching NCAA basketball and watching our brackets go to hell. Oh, well...since I have no chance of winning, I'm rooting for all the upsets now. I don't really follow college hoops, but for some reason I really look forward to March Maddness. I love seeing underdogs win, and just the excitement these "kids" have for the game. I know college sports is hardly utopia, but once it moves to the professional level, it loses something for me. I guess hearing NBA players complain they can't feed their family on $14 million a year really illustrates the gap between us regular folks and those in that stratosphere. Trust me, I could feed my entire neighborhood on $14 million a year. It's all in the budgeting, and using coupons.

I capped my pseudo-binge off on Friday night by eating way, way too much at dinner. I tried to make up for it yesterday by skipping breakfast and only snacking on a sandwich for lunch and then having a healthy dinner -- salad, fish and asparagus. Geeze, no wonder I'm not losing weight. Lately it's all been about feast or famine (literally). And I know better. For optimal weight loss, at least for me, it's about eating 6 small meals a day, equally spaced, with fruits, veggies and protein with a touch of carbs. All I can say is that I'm glad I have almost 2 weeks until the end of the month before I weigh in. I guess the win for the day was I didn't get anything to fuel a binge when I was at the grocery store (ice cream, chips, crackers) and I didn't go next door to the coffee house for a latte and pastery. Once again, I have to remind myself, baby steps.

(I must be psychic -- the phone just rang and I told Don, "That's my mom," and it is. I wonder if Dionne Warwick is hiring?)

Now that it's officially spring, I will spend part of the day planning a spring cleaning weekend -- you know, out with the old, in with the new. Even though we recently moved in, there are still some things that have been on my long-term to do list, including hanging more photos and rearranging some kitchen cabinets. Fun stuff. The good thing is that I am going to try and get this done before the weather turns warm(er) and I'll use that as an excuse to play outside instead of cleaning. Of course, the way things are going, it's not looking to warm up past the low 40s until mid-April.

Thursday, March 17, 2005

My Irish Eyes

As you slide down the banisters of life,
may the splinters never point the wrong way.
~Irish Proverb

In honor of St. Patrick’s Day, I thought I would give you a little background in to my family history – at least what I have heard from my dad.

My ancestors on my father’s side lived on the border of Ireland and Northern Ireland in a small town called Clones. My great-great-great grandfather worked in his father’s hardware store. He sold a shovel to a Catholic who was later convicted of using that shovel to kill a Protestant. My great-great-great grandfather fled to America as he wanted to avoid testifying in the trial. When he arrived at Ellis Island, like so many others, the registrar changed the spelling of his last name from Mealiff to Mealiffe. He found his way to Iowa, where he settled. Supposedly all the Mealiffs and Mealiffes are related, stemming back to the Mealiff clan in Clones, Ireland. There are still a lot of Mealiffs in Iowa, apparently.

A few years back, my dad went to Clones and met with some long-lost relatives. I would love to do that sometime. I’ve always thought of myself as mostly Irish, although like most Americans, I am actually a mix of Irish, English, Scottish and German blood. I love Irish history, music, lore, etc. Heck, I even like Irish stew! Maybe someday….

And as we all partake in a pint or two, may Irish eyes smile upon you this day.

A toast to your coffin.
May it be made of 100 year old oak.
And may we plant the tree together, tomorrow.
~Irish Toast

Tuesday, March 15, 2005

Walking on the Edge

I am oh-so-close to going on a binge. I hate this feeling, knowing that any open bag is not safe in my presence. I can barely walk down the snack aisle at the grocery store for fear of bags of chips and cookies jumping into my basket. Heck, I just chowed on 3 small bags of crackers to try and sate the ravenous being inside. It’s not working.

The only thing that kept me from driving to the store last night was the fact Jager was nestled on my lap. How sad is it that the only thing that held me back was my dog’s cuteness? As it is, I devoured a big pudding parfait from the café downstairs this afternoon for lunch.

I know why I’m doing this, and I hate to admit I allow my feelings get the better of me. Because I am feeling unappreciated, unloved, lonely, etc. I am turning, once again, to the thing that has always been there for me – food. That pudding didn’t tell me it has to work. The pizza I ate on Friday night had the time to spend with me.

I feel like it’s such a cop out to give credence to my eating because of my feelings. I swear to you, there is an inner being who wants to eat healthy and who knows how to do it. That inner being gets swallowed up (no pun intended) whenever I am feeling sorry for myself, and I hate it. I can watch it happening, and I feel powerless to stop it. It’s like the inner child in me goes and pouts in the corner and won’t listen to reason.

Maybe now that I feel like Jabba the Hut after eating pudding and crackers, I will shame myself into getting on to the treadmill when I get home.

Saturday, March 12, 2005

Weather Envy

Having spent the last 10 years in Southern California, seasonal changes rarely made an impression on me. As people talked about early spring suprise snow storms, thaws, the first sightings of new grass, I was basking in 70 degree sunshine. Of course, now that I am living in Minnesota, things are much, much different and I think Mother Nature is getting back at me for all the times I would call friends in cold climates and casually mention how we might BBQ or go for margaritas down at Venice Beach. I read with envy those who are experiencing their first taste of spring -- I've read about flip flops, open toe sandals, lawn mowing, tulip blooming, robins singing all while trying to keep my extremities from getting frostbite.

I know I should be grateful that we had a mild winter. And even now the temps aren't THAT cold. It's just that we get a taste of spring -- almost 60 degrees last Sunday -- and then we get a series of days where it doesn't reach 30. What kills me is that the sun is shining brightly but it's in the teens today. Guess I can't put those gloves away just yet.

I did do something fun this morning. I went to Let's Dish. They have all the food prepped and you go from station to station and you either fill up a freezer bag or a foil pan. I made 8 different dishes and each dish serves 4 (they say 6, but I think 4 is more realistic) so that means 16 meals all in less than 2 hours. I did Asian BBQ Pork Wraps, Beef Roulade, Chicken & Southwestern Stuffing, Pizza Margherita, Ravioli Lasagna, Roast Garlic Chicken and Rice, Sesame Pork with Rice and St. Patty's Beef & Veggies. I like the idea of having some prepared meals ready to go for those busy weeks (like this past week). I can't wait to try these and see if I want to go back. The menu options change monthly. It averages out to about $3.90 a serving, which doesn't seem too bad (if I got 6 servings out of each, it would be $2.60).

This week was super busy at work -- totally cutting into my blogging (reading and writing). My boss was out on Friday and that's when I can usually take it a little easy, however he left me with about a dozen things to do plus I had my own To Do list. I was able to get them all done, although my To Do list hasn't seemed to get any shorter as I continue to add tasks. I am glad my job continues to be interesting, and even a little challenging at times.

One of the other reasons I haven't been writing as much is because I've been a bit depressed about Don and his job. Since he reads my blog, I didn't want to post anything I didn't discuss with him first. Anyway, the cause for my emotions is the time he's been spending on the job. It's been a long season, and I thought that the off-season was just that -- OFF SEASON. Of course, the Vikings aren't a normal team, and Don has had to deal with the trading of Randy Moss, the sale of the team, the potential new owner lying on his resume, free agent signings and now the head coach is being investigated in a ticket scalping ring. He's worked almost 30 days straight, and that's obviously cut into my time with him. We've had several discussions, most of them ending with me in tears, but we're getting through it together.

Better go and get the dogs fed before they decide to turn each other into a snack!

Tuesday, March 08, 2005

Everything Looks Brighter in the (sun)Light of Day

I think my blue mood last week was caused in part by PMS and in part by the dreary weather. I'm a So Cal native. I'm used to over 300 days of sun. I know the Los Angeles area has been getting more than their share of rain this year, and we've had a "dry" winter here, but I am missing the sun.

The good news is that the sun is rising earlier and setting later now. I am actually arriving at work as the sun is peaking over the horizion and it's staying light out until after 6 PM. Even though it's not warm by any stretch of the imagination (even Sunday was mid-50s), I am so ready to soak up some rays and vitamin D.

Yesterday has the makings of a disaster. As the Admin I am responsible for inputting the time cards for the week into the payroll system. I highlighted them all from the database and went to hit print and actually hit delete. Opps! I, of course, in my best drama queen mode, made a much bigger deal out of it than I needed to. I went to all the team leaders and told them about it and they kind of laughed and ribbed me about it, but I didn't get yelled at.

I did post my new scale numbers, which shows a .5 pound gain, which isn't too bad considering the month I had. I'm doing much better on my foods and exercise (the treadmill is a great thing!), although I should be a little more consistent with it. I was trying 2000 calories a day, and I think that may be too much, but will use that number this week and adjust from there. I'm not focusing on decreasing carbs or anything, I'm just trying to get fruit and veggies in (yesterday -- 3 oz. berries, 1 plum, 1/2 apple, 5 1/2 c. of salad, mushrooms & asparagus in my pasta). I did snack on 8 Girl Scout Thin Mints plus half of a Hershey bar -- grrrr.... That's the kind of shit I need to watch.

Since I didn't walk yesterday, I am going to have to do it tonight, even though I'm not going to get home until 6 PM since I have a hair appointment. My hair hasn't been pissing me off lately (it tends to do that as I am trying to grow it out) so maybe it's reached a good length, although I want the bangs to be finish growing out. Right now, it's hitting the bottom of my neck, and I may let it go 4 inches to my shoulders. I know, major decisions...

Friday, March 04, 2005

Pity, Party of One

I know I haven’t updated pretty much all week. I haven’t really been motivated, partly due it being that time we women know all so well. My emotions have been all over the place, and I can’t even begin to discuss the cravings. You know the 4 boxes of Girl Scout cookies I didn’t open on Sunday? Well, they’re open now! The dogs have helped, so it hasn’t been me binging on Thin Mints. I still won’t get near the scale until Sunday morning.

Work is wearing me out. I hate writing that. I mean, when I was a leader I went through so much more than what I’m going through now – longer hours, higher expectations, less appreciation. I pretty much work my 8 hours, although I usually eat lunch at my desk. I meet my deadlines. I feel (mostly) appreciated by my boss and the team leaders. I usually feel like I’m exceeding expectations (although not today). What’s frustrating is that I see the team leaders going through the same shit I went through – understaffed, unachievable goals and management raising the expectations. When I was on the travel side, I figured it was because we were such a different business. Now, I realize this is how it is in corporate America. It kind of depresses me. At least when I was a leader, I felt like I was making a difference – I could answer the phones, help clients, etc. I don’t feel like I’m impacting business in my current position.

My boss is off today, but left me a shitload of work to do. It’s not a problem, and I have it all done except for one project that I’m waiting on another person for information. Heck, I have even cleaned out my e-mail inbox so it’s one page instead of three. At least I have my iPod to keep me entertained. Plus, we’re moving a few rows of people to consolidate our area, and that’s going to keep me busy for the rest of the day.

I know I will be catching up on some sleep this weekend. I’ve been having weird dreams (nothing new), but some have been disturbing and I wake up thinking, which is never good at 3:30 AM. We are supposed to warm up this weekend – like into the upper 40s, lower 50s. I’m hoping for a bit of a thaw. I did sit on the deck yesterday afternoon, soaking in the weak winter sun, reading the mail while the dogs romped in the snow. That was really nice. Depending on how warm it is, I might even be tempted to pull out the lounge chairs. At least it’s getting lighter earlier, which means I don’t arrive at work in complete darkness. In fact, twice this week, when I was running a few minutes later than usual, I actually saw the sun peek over the horizon. It’s staying light until after 6:00 PM now, and I’m beginning to feel a little bit of spring fever.

Other than sleep, I’m not sure what I’m going to do. I’m not sure if Don will be tied to the phone and computer. I’m getting cabin fever (hmmm, cabin fever + spring fever = road trip, I think….) so I will probably try and do something outside the house at least one of the days. Maybe even with my camera….

Thursday, March 03, 2005

My New Plan