Monday, September 29, 2008


A little concerned - I've found a lump or a bump right in the middle of my chest; where my rib cage comes together. And when I press on this bump, I feel instant nausea, which tells me this must have been here for a while, because since the surgery, I've had trouble with my bras. If the band was too wide or laid just on a particular spot, it would be very uncomfortable. I finally fit into a very nice bra that's been too small for years, and the band is soft, so for the most part, I'm OK, but it must be this bump that the band is hitting to cause the discomfort.

I checked with one of the other ladies here at work that have had this procedure, and she's not noticed any bump. So, I guess I need to go check it out. I already have a mamo scheduled for this week, and I'm seeing my regular doctor next week.

Trying very hard not to freak.

Friday, September 26, 2008

Go, Team!

As many of you know, Special K and I are very involved with our American Heart Walk each year, and this year has been the most special because our team is made of employees at work that have had some sort of weight loss surgery and those that support us, and all are doing fantastic. I'm so proud of all of them.

We had our one big fundraising event yesterday at work - our annual baked potato sale. We get one-pound potatoes and we lay out a bar with all the fixings you can think of to put on a potato; cheese (shredded and hot nacho cheese), chili (regular and vegetarian), onions, bacon bits, jalapenos, sour cream (fat free and regular), steamed broccoli florets, butter, Smart Balance, and one of team members made Pico de Gallo, which was very popular - folks couldn't say enough good things about it.

We hadn't gotten as many orders as we have historically, and we think that's due to the current economy. Folks are tightening their belts and holding on to their shekels. But we made 13 extra, just in case. Well, not only did we sell all the extras, but we sold the six no-shows and one from someone out ill. Way cool. Raised a total of $432 for the Heart Walk, after expenses.

And our team? Totally, freakin' amazing. Special K and I have done this sale now for five years (this was our fifth event), and we sometimes were on our own or maybe one or two other helpers. Well, this year - phew! We had a total of seven of us down there yesterday - totally amazing. It went so well - the best ever. Very Jazzed.

So our team has met it's goal, and I made my personal goal - yea, Team!

Donations are always welcome, if you haven't already. Even though we've reached our goals, the object is to get as much as we can for this amazing charity. The good they do is phenomenal.

Thank you!

Monday, September 22, 2008

Happy Birthday, Mum!

It's my mother's birthday today, and it's also the first day of fall.

Sad to see the summer go, for a change. I've been so cold the past several days. Gonna be a rough winter, I think.

Visited the folks yesterday to celebrate Mum's birthday. She decided she didn't want to go out to eat, so she set a table. She always sets such a nice table - she had cold cuts and breads, salmon mousse, croquettes, fried green beans (yes, you read that right - from Costco - they were good! Came with a Wasabi dip), steak tartar (used to be one of my faves - didn't even try it; just knew it wouldn't have worked), a great salad, fried broccoli and cauliflower florets and brandied cherries!

I went for the croquettes, but whereas the last time we visited, I ate a bunch, this time, the first bite told me "no, not today" so I just ate the insides out about three of them and then went for a small plate of salad. That was delicious - was able to put some egg on and had honey mustard dressing - very yummy.

People ask me if I ever miss eating "normal." Yes, occasionally - I won't lie. But very infrequently. Yesterday, looking at that steak tartar, I wanted it something fierce, but I was afraid I would get stuck and it's been a while since I have, so I didn't want to chance it. While the want was there for just a few moments, I got over it very quickly.

Cuz I'm liking what I see in the mirror more than what that steak tartar would have tasted like.

Sunday, September 21, 2008

Medical Stuff

Yesterday I finally got around to getting in to the lab to have blood drawn for my surgeon. I also asked that they send the results to my regular doctor. Went ahead and scheduled my mamo that I should've done back in April and scheduled an appointment with my regular doctor about a week after that. Might as make sure all is as it should be.

When I had my follow-up with my surgeon, he expressed concern that I'm not getting enough protein in, and I agree. I also know I'm not getting enough water down every day. While I sit here at the computer, I'm good at drinking, but for the rest of the day, I forget. I always have a bottle out on my desk at work, but more often than not, I don't remember, it gets warm and it ends up back in the fridge.

One of the drawbacks from weight loss surgery is that it is extremely important to monitor your nutrition, and that's not always easy to do. Hair loss and bone mass loss are highly possible if you don't get the right nutrients down. I've had some hair loss, but very little, so I'm not sure if it's because I'm not getting enough protein or just the age thing. I feel dizzy when I bend over for any length of time and that's because I know I'm not getting enough of anything down. It would just be too funny if I end up malnourished.

Even though I feel constantly hungry, it's a different hungry than what I would feel, pre-surgery, and I can live with the feeling. It's almost become second nature. I know I should eat something, but most often just don't feel like it. I usually have to make myself eat, and I'm not sure if this is a good thing. Sometimes I actually still look forward to a meal (like today; going the folks for my mum's birthday, and she's going to have those little croquette balls - yum!).

So, I'm just waiting to see how my blood work comes out. Hopefully, all is well, or at least still fixable.

I find it ironic that I started out life not really wanting to eat much. My mother always struggled with me to get food down. Then I hit puberty and hit the tarmac running and wouldn't stop eating. It would be really funny if I reverted back to not wanting to eat for the last part of my life.

A circle complete. Ah, well, that's supposed to be good thing, at least in the Chinese culture.

Friday, September 12, 2008

100 and counting!

9/12/08 9/12/08

Did it - reached 100 pounds lost this morning!

Still amazed!

Thursday, September 11, 2008

One more to go!

Finally!!! Dropped another pound this morning, making it a total of 99. One more 'til 100. My goodness - I still find this amazing. Even though this is one of the hardest things I've ever done, it is so totally worth it, and I am still amazed at the results. Every body is different, and different folks respond differently. It also depends on how serious they are and if they watch what they're eating.

I have naturally gravitated over to salads and soups and fruits, because my taste buds have changed. Things that tasted good pre-surgery no longer do - for example, rice. I used to love rice. It just doesn't taste the same anymore. I'm liking fruit a lot more than I did. Craving veggies. I pretty much don't eat meat or poultry anymore, cuz it just doesn't work. Occassionally I'll have ground beef or ground chicken, but I do much better with fish, and while I always liked fish, I like it more now.

My number one problem before was my Coca-Cola habit - 3,4, sometimes 5 cans/bottles a day. Now I just don't care for the taste of it - I prefer 7-Up, which I never cared much for before. And I drink very little at a time - I prefer it in my frosty mug so that it turns to ice and I eat it with a spoon. Weird, huh? I do occassionally crave some chocolate, but when I do, I like a Butterfinger. I bought a bar a few weeks ago, and that thing lasted me over a week. I'd have a bite and I was fine.

I'm trying to instill some good eating habits, so that when my 6-month honeymoon period is over, I can sustain the weight and not put it back. That would be the ultimate let down for me, if I allowed myself to do that. Just shoot me then, and be done with it, cuz I did not go through all this just to end up big again. That just is not an option. If I see myself headed that way, I swear I'll get my jaw wired shut.

My follow-up with Dr L went great - he was amazed how much I have lost in just over 3 months. He has a concern, as I do, that I'm not getting enough protein, so he ordered a blood test. I need to go do that. But he's pleased with my progress.

So, onwards and upwards. The holidays are approaching (where did this year go?) and I have to mentally prepare myself that things are different this year, so many things I enjoyed in the past are no longer an option. Thanksgiving will be interesting.

But I have to remember it's just one day. And that's all I can do, is do it one day at a time.

So far, so good.

Tuesday, September 9, 2008

Happy Birthday, Sparky!

Can't believe I neglected to mention that we've had Sparky for a year on September 7th, this past Sunday. We're calling Sept 7th his birthday cuz we don't know really what it is or how old he really is - pretty sad, huh?

We rescued Sparky last year. We were actually looking for a little Yorkie terrier, only because a friend of ours had one named Griz and he was just the cutest thing - great personality and very affectionate. So we were lookin' for our Griz. Ironically, we always thought we wanted Westies, and sure enough, we came across Sparky on We actually saw him for about two months, and while we thought him cute, we kept looking for a Griz.

Then one day, Special K calls me into the den and sez, "You gotta see this - Sparky's message has changed," and sure enough, now next to his picture, it said "Help! I've only got two days left!"

So, we called the number - it was a 360 area code (up in Bellingham) and it was a woman who ran a poodle rescue. The dog, however, was down in Arizona, she explained. Her daughter worked for a vet, who had taken Sparky in from a kill shelter and housed him until they could find him a home. After several months, the vet said enough - gotta go by the end of the week, which would have meant back to the kill shelter.
So we ponied up the $100 for his airfare and $80 for him to be fixed and tagged, and picked him up two days later. The ad on petfinder stated he was six years old - his paperwork said eight years old. Our vet said more like nine or ten. My goodness. Rough not knowing the exact age or what his birthday is, but all they could tell us is that he came from an abused situation. And you could tell, too. He was so timid. Got him home and he just walked over to the wall and stood facing the wall with his head down and his tail between his legs. Every time we reached to pet him, he flinched.

We had gone out the night before we were due to pick him up and gone to Pet Co on a shopping spree - bought everything we thought a dog would need. A carrier, a bed, a blanket - bowls, food, leash, collar, toys, etc., etc. He did not like that carrier. Found out much later that all his bottom teeth are fractured. The vet said it was consistent with grabbing on to a fence or cage and trying to yank it open. He had no interest in the balls or toys. Ate like we were going to take his food away. And he was so sore from his operation - he kept trying to sit or lay down, and you could just tell he was in pain. I really wish they had stated his true age - then I would have protested having him fixed. That didn't need to happen. He was such a little sad sack. Growled whenever you tried to pick him up or got too close to his face. Not a snuggle bunny at all - I don't think he ever knew love or affection.

He's very handsome in his face and I suspect he was a stud for a puppy mill. He's our little ole man, now - sway back, bow legs and all, but he is just so dang cute.

Now, a year later, he's like a different dog. We get home from work and he's so excited to see us, tail a'waggling, jumping for joy. Then he does this race up and down our long hallway from the living room to the back bedroom (where the sliding door leads out to the carport). So very cute. And while he never got into balls, he loves his Bobo, his papaguyo (toy parrot) and a plush bone. He now lets us pick him up and snuggle him - he loves it when we lift him up onto the bed with us and he gets double lovin' from us both. Or up in our laps while we're watching TV - it's just amazing how far he's come. Gotta be careful - he still flinches if you reach for him too quickly, but he certainly knows he's the king of the house. Loves his walks, especially when we take him to one of the many, beautiful parks around our house.

So, we don't know his birthday. We're calling it Sept 7th, cuz that's the day he was reborn, when he came to us. And we love the f**k outta this little guy - I am amazed just how much he's woven himself into both of our hearts. I can't imagine life without the Sparkster.

I'm so very glad he rescued us.

Monday, September 8, 2008

Yea, Mariners!

Special K and I had a wonderful weekend. We visited the folks on Saturday - it was a beautiful day for a drive. Mum made her fabulous croquettes, and I was able to eat a bunch of them! So yummy. Took the Sparkster with us - he loves his car rides.

Yesterday, we went to a Mariner game at Safeco Field. A co-worker had given us the tickets, as she couldn't go. What a wonderful afternoon. We drove to the park and ride, and then caught the game special to the ball park. Only way to go. No hassle trying to find parking and maneuvering through the traffic - less expensive, too. We saw one parking lot charging $25! Outrageous. The bus cost us $12 total, coming and going. It dropped us off right at the corner of the park, and picked us up at the same place. We were in and out so fast. Beautiful. And then the game - it was a gorgeous summer's day - I was just a little chilly as our seats were in the shade the entire time, and there was a wind blowing, but Special K brought her jacket - good thing for me. I had nachos (chips, cheese and jalapenos!) and K had a dog - we shared a beer, and then some peanuts. Felt terrific - made it even nicer. And the Mariners won! Yea, team!

Only frustrating thing - it's been about a week, and no pounds lost. I know there will be plateaus, but a week. Not liking that.

Seeing my doctor today for my 3-month follow-up.

Wednesday, September 3, 2008


Got a nice e-mail today from an old friend down in So Cal ( he and his partner lives right there in North Hollywood - oops! "scuse me - in Valley Village!) He and I used to work together, once upon a time. He is such a hoot - a lot of fun to be around.

I really love living up here in the Northwest, but sometimes, I really miss L.A. - actually it's people we left behind that I miss. Moonface is one of these people - such a sweetheart; a total love. Sassy, too, though - one thing that always comes to mind is his hair. If it was raining or too windy, good Lord, watch out. Never a strand out of place. Too funny!

So, it was terrific hearing from him and finding out he's been reading this blog (Hi, Mr. S! man - that sounds stuffy; ok, let's try this - Hi, Moonface! yup, much better) and hearing his good wishes.

Just really grateful for the terrific family and friends that I have - life goes best with love!

Tuesday, September 2, 2008

Early Autumn

We all have the sniffles at home - Sparky, included. This past weekend, it was as if Autumn has come early. It was so cold! And the weather service lied, natch. It was supposed to be a beautiful weekend - no rain, mid 60's - very comfortable. It wasn't. It drizzled a little Saturday morning, but then the sun played peek-a-boo all day. Sunday, it rained. Several times. Most annoying.

You see, we had our yard sale this weekend. Half the proceeds are going to the AHA Heart Walk. We did best on Saturday and less than a third of that on Sunday. Most disappointing. We barely reached $200, so we're rounding it up, and $100 will go to the Heart Walk. Really expected to do better than that, and I blame the weather. No one wanted to come out in such icky conditions. Oh, well, we do what we can.

And the cold - I felt like I was freezing all weekend. I very nearly turned the heat on yesterday, but our house is very drafty and takes a lot to heat. It's expensive, so I didn't want to start that yet. My sweats are falling off of me - really need a new pair. And I wore socks yesterday! For those that know me and my hatred of pretty much anything on my feet, that's something. I have to wonder if it's the weight loss that's making me feel the cold so much more. It was the same at work last week - I pretty much froze all week. Good thing I have a shawl here or I would've been sitting at my desk with my jacket lol.

So, it's September already. And Fall will be here soon enough.

I think it's gonna be a very cold winter.