Thursday, August 23, 2012

Well, We're Movin' On Up!

To the east side
To a deluxe apartment in the sky-hi-hi
Movin on up
To the east side
We finally got a piece of the pie

Sorry. Once I start with the Jefferson's theme song I just can't seem to stop myself. Especially since I stopped short of my favorite two lines:

Fish don't fry in the kitchen
Beans don't burn on the grill

Okay, okay. I'm only writing today to say I'm officially moving my sporadic blogging over to my shiny (and I mean that in all senses of the word) web site. You can find all of my mad blogging skills (snort) here. In the meantime...

As long as we live, it's you and me baby
There ain't nothing wrong with that.

Oh, and as for having the Jefferson's theme song now permanently etched in your brain for the rest of the day? You're welcome.

P.S. If you're too young to remember The Jeffersons, I don't want to hear about it.

Wednesday, June 20, 2012


Sometimes when I'm feeling antsy or discombobulated, I have to remember Psalm 100:

Shout for joy to the Lord, all the earth.
Worship the Lord with gladness;
come before him with joyful songs.
Know that the Lord is God.
It is he who made us, and we are his;
we are his people, the sheep of his pasture.

Enter his gates with thanksgiving and his courts with praise;
give thanks to him and praise his name.
For the Lord is good and his love endures forever;
his faithfulness continues through all generations.

There. That feels better. Let's pick up where we left off and keep on keepin' on.

Friday, April 13, 2012

Return of the Friday Moment of Truth!

Oops! I was a bit of a slacker there, wasn't I? C'mon folks, don't be shy. I've got nothing for you--still at -0/-2 for the week/year. I have been busting my behind in boot camp, but I don't even look for that on the scale until all of my broken muscles stop aching and quivering.

Check in time!

Saturday, March 24, 2012

Oops! How about a Saturday Moment of Truth?

Yesterday I was right back up to 154. I took measurements. Alas, they did not indicate any progress. So I'm still sitting at +0.5/-2. Yep. Gonna have to stop eating. I know, you know it, the American people know it. That doesn't mean I want to go on the strict diet. *sigh*

Anybody doing better? Anybody? Bueller?

Monday, March 12, 2012

Adventures in Yoga, or Yet Another Underwear SNAFU

I keep trying yoga. I like the fact that very few people "master" the practice, rather it's an activity where one can constantly grow and stretch--both literally and figuratively. I love the way yoga cleanses the mind and challenges the body. I cling to the hope that yoga will one day make me stand up a little straighter and stretch a little farther.

At least this is the me I see in my head: a graceful woman, self-assured and poised on her mat.

Alas, I fear the reality is the bumbling butterball who's sweating like a sinner in church on Sunday. But, you know, that's the great thing about yoga. The instructor said today, "We're not giving away any medals today, so do what you can." Her words empowered me, and I made it through my very first hot yoga class with a smile on my face.

Then I got home.

I'm pretty sure God has an incredibly well developed sense of humor. I'm equally sure I shouldn't have written that post about avoiding sayings on your underwear. Here's the stupid thing I did today: I needed a pair of underwear that wouldn't show off my pantyline. Of course, I haven't finished laundry so I grab a new pair of Vicki's yoga underwear, consider the fact I should wash them first as the instructions suggest, shrug my shoulders and head to the bathroom to take the tags off. (Yes, there's more than one cautionary tale here.)

The panties are hot pink.

On the back they say "Hot Stuff."

I went to hot yoga.

I sweated so much that when I went to take a shower, I had a hot pink panty tattoo on my posterior from where the panties were NOT color fast. Do you hear me, world? Do as I say and not as I do: wash your clothes before you wear them and know with all certainty that, yes, you should wash your hot pink Vicki's panties in cold with like colors.

I imagine these sorts of things amuse God. Almost as much as the construction workers on the roof of the adjacent building were amused to look down and discover a room full of women doing yoga. They had to be even more amused to see the butterball in the back struggling to keep up.

Well, guess what? I live to entertain, so I'll keep getting healthy and you can keep chuckling. Even if hot yoga left a hot pink imprint from my "Hot Stuff" undies.

As a side note, I'm going to be writing about my adventures at Be Yoga on the Healthy Writer blog later this week. It was phenomenal. If you live in the Marietta area, this yoga studio is even better than what I imagined a good yoga studio would be. And, hey, if I can do it, anyone can--just wash your undies first. Oh, and no sayings.

Friday, March 9, 2012

Friday Moment of Truth

You know, I suppose I should put some other things on my blog. Alas, I haven't had any brilliant moments of insight recently. Nor have I danced around a pole or bought new underwear. Anyhoo, here's the Friday update: I want to punch something. Same spot as last Friday, BUT I actually saw two pounds lighter on Tuesday!!!! Then I had macaroni and cheese at the church dinner on Wednesday. We all know that mac & cheese is a gateway food for me. End result? I want to punch something. I've been skirting under my calorie goal the past few days, but I didn't get to exercise yesterday because I overdid it on Sunday and hurt my knee then overdid it on Wednesday and hurt the top of my foot. And, oh hey, I'm soliciting advice on the best ice packs for both of those injuries. Here are the deets:

  • On Sunday, I ran 7 miles at a 13 minute mile pace. This was not smart.
  • Short run on Tuesday
  • Kettlebells on Monday and Wednesday--again, not smart. I made my knees worse and probably hurt the top of my foot compensating for the sore knees despite my best efforts to keep my form proper.
  • Logged my food every dadgum day and was only over once or twice
  • My measuring tape is cowering somewhere, so I have no idea what the measurements are.
  • Ha! Wrote at least 1000 words Monday through Thursday
  • Let's not talk about the state of the house or how I just sent my oldest to school in shorts because he's officially out of pants. And so am I.
That's all she wrote! May your week have been more successful than mine. May the scale be kinder to all us next week.

Friday, March 2, 2012

Friday Moment of Truth

Oh, a : ( face for me. I gained a pound this week. I gained a pound despite my long run, two short runs, and tracking everything I ate and going over only twice. Grr. The end result is +0.5/-1.5. Here's what I've been up to

  • 6 miles on Sunday
  • short runs on Tuesday and Thursday
  • bought kettle bells--will probably break those out this afternoon
  • got fancy schmancy pedometer up and running
  • lost 0.5 inches on my thighs and .25 inches around my neck--measured twice because I didn't lose inches anywhere else--even gained 0.5 on my hips which probably means the first set of measurements weren't accurate
  • tracked what I ate every day and had my 8 glasses of water every day
I think I need better supplements. Anyone know the best place to get reasonable multivitamins, etc? I don't want anything "designed" to make me lose weight--I think that's part of my problem this go around: LA Weight Loss and the folks at Court South had some kind of mild diet pill stuff mixed in with the vitamins they suggested. It's all about slow and steady, which is good because it's definitely SLOW at this point.

What about you? Got some good news to cheer me up?

Friday, February 24, 2012

Friday Moment of Truth

Roll call!

Okay, peoples, let's "weigh in"...

  • I'm down a pound...finally (-1/-1.5)
  • I logged my food at least 4 days this week. Woo-hoo!
  • Long run of 5.5 miles on Sunday, short runs on Tuesday and Thursday
  • Pilates on Wednesday and soon to be today
  • Bought a new pedometer/calorie counter
  • Canceled online Weight Watchers which means new $$ for kettle bells! Adventures with kettle bells coming up!
What about you guys? Don't be shy. Look, I've lost a grand total of 1.5 pounds for the YEAR. Every little thing counts...

Friday, February 17, 2012

Friday Moment of Truth

So most of my moment of truth information can be found over at the Healthy Writer, but I wanted to keep this slot for anyone who wants to join me. (Please? I'm getting lonely.)

This week: -0.5 for a total of -0.5

Thursday, February 16, 2012


Have you ever had one of those moments were you are just irrationally upset at someone else? I'm having one of those moments today. I'm not going to get into it much, but suffice to say politics came up in Bible study and I'm apparently the only person in the class who feels the way I do.

For the record, I'm too smart to air my views here. They have no place. They'd probably incite a riot of half people who agree with me and half who vehemently don't, and I'm so, so tired of the divisiveness of today's political atmosphere.

Sometimes I, like Rodney King, wonder, "Can't we all just get along?" Or I wonder "Am I such a bad person that you are willing to discount me thanks to a label you can conveniently stick on me?" You know what? It hurts my admittedly too tender feelings.

I've been brash in the past, I'll admit that. I'll even apologize if you'd like. I have opinions and haven't hesitated to share them especially when I feel passionately about something like public education. As I get older, I try to keep those feelings to myself. They're often not welcome. But they're still mine, still a part of me. If I can dearly love people who believe completely different things, then why is it so hard for some people to like me in spite of what I believe?

Okay, I'm going to bring this pity party to a close. I had to get some of these emotions off my chest so I could function today, and I have. Tears streak my face as I write because I'm sometimes such a wussy woman. I, like everyone else, just want to be liked--or at the very least respected. Just know and understand this: who I am and what I believe stems from my daily attempt not to judge others and to love others as I love myself. Hell, sometimes I'm pretty hard on myself, so I actually try to cut some slack for others.

And, you know what? About now I could use a little slack for myself.

Monday, February 13, 2012

Do as I say, not as I do...

Yeah. Remember that high and mighty post about not wearing words on your booty? I confess I found some words I'm willing to wear on my booty. *hangs head in shame* I have fallen prey to the foibles of this generation.

Please tell me I'm not alone. What booty words would make you buy a pair of underwear?

Friday, February 10, 2012

Friday Moment of Truth

....and we're back down to where we started. *wipes sweat from brow in relief* For those of you keeping score at home, that means I'm down 2 for the week and down none over all. Except it's a muscular 156. More progress has been made than the scale would indicate because a) I have resisted the Girl Scout Cookies and b) I have now officially put in 2 short runs and 1 long run for 3 almost 4 weeks. Now I need to add some weights and start counting calories. Four pounds in two weeks--can she do it?

How about you? Did you get your exercise in? Watch your calories?

Monday, February 6, 2012

Why I'm Not Scared of 47...

**Gentlemen, you may want to skip this one. I'm going to mention feminine plumbing products. Consider yourself forewarned.**

I know I ought to be scared of getting older. All those commercials for liposuction, spider vein removal, and botox tell me so. Still, I can't help but think that 47 might actually be fun. As I jogged to the bus stop with one arm under my boobs because I wasn't wearing a bra, I had to muse, "You've coma a long way, baby."

17-year-old Sally: Ew, gross. I can't go anywhere without a bra. What if someone saw my *whispers* nipples?
27-year-old Sally: You've got to be kidding me?! Where were all these push-up, cleavage enhancing bras when I was in college?
37-year-old Sally: If I leave the sweatshirt on and don't get out of the car at car pool, no one has to know I'm not wearing a bra.

Toilet Paper
17-year-old Sally: Mom! You can't be serious! No way can we buy the family-size toilet paper then go through the check-out line where the cute sack boy works!!
27-year-old Sally: Ooh, if I get the mega pack of toilet paper at Sam's, I can save a ton of money!
37-year-old Sally: Are we out of toilet paper again? I'm going to buy two of the mega packs next time.

17-year-old Sally: You want me to put what where?
27-year-old Sally: How did I live without these things?
37-year-old Sally: Wait a minute. I can't remember if I put in a new tampon or not...

17-year-old Sally: I must do all of it and do it absolutely correctly--even the extra credit.
27-year-old Sally: I think I'd kinda like to go back to school.
37-year-old Sally: Why can't I do 4th grade math? Aw, screw it. A for effort.

17-year-old Sally: Why do people have those things again?
27-year-old Sally: I love this baby boy, and he is perfect.
37-year-old Sally: Can I hold your baby? [Because I'm too declaring Mertau Law on having any more of my own but I love to help other mothers and coo at their babies]

17-year-old Sally: I can't dance! What if someone sees me?!
27-year-old Sally: You know, the consumption of alcohol makes this dancing thing fun.
37-year-old Sally: I'll dance whenever I want to, however I want to. I'll dance around a damn pole if I want to.

So, yes, 37-year-old Sally has, for the most part, given up on cosmetics, fixing her hair, or even wearing a bra, but she's a lot more fun than 17-year-old Sally and she's savvier than 27-year-old Sally. It can only get better, right? Right?

Friday, February 3, 2012

Friday Moment of Truth

One fifty freakin' eight. That means, for those of you playing along at home, that I have actually gained two pounds in the month of January. That brings the number of pounds that need to be lost in the month of February up to 6. Expect a very grumpy Sally. She likes to eat. Her fondness of food might, in fact, explain her current predicament.

Oh, well. Onward and upward.

Wednesday, February 1, 2012

An Open Letter to Young Ladies Everywhere

Dear young ladies (and by young I mean pretty much anyone who shops in the PINK section of Victoria's Secret--a generous definition of young for some of us, I know):

We need to talk.

Now that I've reached the advanced age of thirty-mumble-mumble, I feel I understand a few things about life. I don't like to rummage around in the underwear drawers of other women, but this is more about a philosophy of life than a pair of underwear. I know, I know. It's on your butt. You can't see it. Even if you look in a mirror, you're going to have to read it backwards. Call me crazy, but I'm afraid that this saying is going to somehow be absorbed through your booty and make it's way up to your brain. Yeah, I know. I'm paranoid like that.

Just promise me, please, that you will not wear this pair of underwear:

I know what you're thinking. You expected a thong? I'll save my lecture on the hygiene dangers of thongs and why they should only be a "sometimes underwear" for another day. Or maybe you expected a diatribe about why you shouldn't wear "Juicy"? Really. That should be self-explanatory.

Don't ever consider yourself a "Sure Thing." Don't sell yourself short. Make 'em work for it, and never give up an inch of your sexuality you don't want to give. Even if you're feeling particularly generous, think twice because there are some things that, once you have given them up, you simply can't get back.

But what if the underwear isn't talking about that? Even if that is the case, which I doubt since we are talking about a pair of panties for heaven's sake, very few things in life are a "Sure Thing." Be cautiously optimistic and always believe in yourself, but sometimes we need to make mistakes in order to grow and learn. Sometimes we have to be a little uncertain about people or ideas.

Finally, you're asking, Sally, why do you have this pair of underwear if you're going to pontificate on such a trivial subject? Hello? Have you met me? I wasn't paying any attention to what I was doing. I grabbed the proper color to match my sports bra, and I got excited about matching underwear because it's not something that happens that often. I decided to make a sacrifice to have the right color in the right size. Besides, they were all out of "Self-Esteem" and "Complex Middle Ground" underwear.

Go forth, young women. Prove us all wrong when we shake our heads and talk about how youth is wasted on the young. Prove us wrong when we say that the next generation is going to be corrupted by the overt sexuality of the world around us. And when you become the execs in charge of making up sayings for underwear? Just don't.


Monday, January 30, 2012

The Elvis Diet

One of my Christmas presents from last year was this lovely mug from my mother:

For my birthday, Janette got me this wine glass:

See a theme? Yep, I like to have my uppers then my downers, and I'm apparently not alone.

Of course, considering what happened to poor Elvis, I probably should re-evaluate this approach to life....

Friday, January 27, 2012

Friday Moment of Truth

So, I'd like to preface this report by saying, it's my birthday week. On Saturday I went to Gretchen's bachelorette party which included supper at Taco Mac, two of something called a Grateful Dead (blessedly, the name was not prophetic), several others of something else in the VIP room, and a 3:00 AM visit to Waffle House where I did, indeed, order hashbrowns. Monday meant a trip to Otter's Chicken. Tuesday, a delightful lunch at Le Cafe Crepe followed by supper at Longhorn. Then Wednesday came along with supper at Taqueria del Sol and margaritas. Thursday, I was going great up until the slice of cake I had at Joshilyn Jackson's launch party for A Grown Up Kind of Pretty. Today, I had to purge with a trip to Sweet Tomatoes. Still, the damage has been done. I'm up another pound, a grand total of +1.5.

I expected this. Really, I did. That's why I made sure I ran on both Tuesday and Thursday, and I managed to break out the new Wii personal trainer on Wednesday. I'm putting on my real game face after Gretchen's wedding.

How 'bout, y'all? Anybody make some progress on my behalf?

Friday, January 13, 2012

Friday Moment of Truth

Let's try something new for 2012. Each Friday, feel free to come here and share your successes, failures, plateaus, and/or righteous indignation at the weight loss process. I will be attempting once again to shed 15 to 20 pounds, to get more running done, to incorporate more strength training, and to track my calories. My starting weight, after a glorious Christmas vacation of eating entirely too much and not moving around anywhere near enough is 156. Obviously, I need a personal trainer and a personal dietitian as well as a personal giver of swift kicks in the pants--mostly the latter.

What about you? Got some goals? Let's get those out, then we need to think about the baby steps in-between so we don't become another New Year's statistic!

Tuesday, January 10, 2012

Fun with Cemeteries, Part III

Picture of the Ascension Mausoleum from the Forest Lawn web site. If you want to find out just how many different things you can do at a cemetery visit the home page. Find out about special events, tourist information, educational opportunities, etc. 
Time to talk about memorial parks! Break out the noise makers, folks!

So in 1913 a man named Hubert Eaton arrived in Los Angeles and started selling cemetery plots in a place called Forest Lawn, a cemetery that was going nowhere fast. His ideas revolutionized the cemetery movement. I'm going to write loosely about what I found in both The Last Great Necessity and Jessica Mitford's The American Way of Death Revisited. Let's hope I get all of this right...

  • Part of Eaton's vision was to streamline the entire burial process. Forest Lawn provided flowers, funeral director, cemetery plot, and monuments. He also added a mausoleum. He essentially mandated that all markers be flat ones bought from the memorial park itself. Naturally, monument dealers didn't like being "cut out" of the profits.
  • Eaton wanted to eliminate all traces of death from the cemetery and added works of art instead. Indeed, Forest Lawn is a tourist destination, which is SO Los Angeles.
  • And, yes, Virginia, commercialism took root. As Sloane says, "Forest Lawn was formed as the last resort of a failed suburban developer who had first tried to establish a more traditional cemetery." Mitford approaches the subject more cynically pointing out that cemeteries can be established as non profit companies thanks to the charitable intention of those rural cemetery founders from the early 1800s. Also, cemeteries can be put on cheaper land and "house" more people to the acre than a subdivision. Profits were there for the taking for those who knew how to properly take advantage of the situation--and how to structure the company so all of the costs fell under the non profit cemetery and all of the profits magically floated into the pockets of those who bought the cemetery.
  • Not entirely a new concept, pre-need sales became a foundation of the memorial park cemetery. You don't want to know about the mark up, and you don't want to know what happens to some of the money that's put into a perpetual trust fund. Do know that aggressive sales tactics are often used. Mitford tells the story of a woman who received a "free" plot only to have the sales person perform a bait and switch by telling her the free plot wasn't in a good spot--but she could apply the amount to a better spot! And the most expensive part of a mausoleum? The crypts that are "heart level." And, yes, there are sales people who can tell you that with a straight face while placing a reverent hand over their respective chests.
  • Forest Lawn was fictionally featured in The Loved One by Evelyn Waugh and also skewered by Aldous Huxley in After Many a Summer Dies the Swan.
  • As memorial parks swept the nation, cemeteries faced many problems. Americans didn't visit cemeteries as often nor did they participate as much in their upkeep. (Here I would add that I think this trend came later to the South since I have a vivid recollection of Decoration Day, and I have visited MANY a cemetery to find relatives or to pay respects. Also, the church cemeteries of the South often have a church nearby to help fund upkeep. That said, there are many cemeteries that have been forgotten.)

A photo of Evergreen Cemetery in Richmond, VA. Like many neglected cemeteries, this one is an African-American cemetery, a holdover from the days of segregation. Look around church cemeteries in the South and you may see similarly neglected sections on the outskirts. Why can't folks just take care of the whole cemetery? That's another rant for another day.
  • Most rural cemeteries (Remember: rural cemetery is a type of cemetery, not cemeteries in rural areas per se) hadn't collected enough for perpetual upkeep. People weren't visiting and certainly weren't adding anything extra for upkeep. 
  • While the funeral home business flourished, independent cemeteries struggled to do business in the new twentieth century way. They faced all sorts of obstacles: new regulations and rising costs among the greatest. Sloane points out that "many cemeterians alive in 1950 could remember the days of a simple horse-drawn coach carrying a wooden box and accompanied by a small family group in carriages. Now cemeteries allowed cars to roam the tight roadways, automobile hearses and lines of cars formed the procession, and wooden boxes were for the indigent only."
  • The contrast between the simplicity of such earlier funerals and the increased pomp and circumstance of mid-twentieth century funerals led to the publication of The American Way of Death by Jessica Mitford and The High Cost of Dying by Ruth Mulvey Harmer.
I'm going to tackle some of the information I learned from Jessica Mitford in some future posts. Prepare to be outraged. Better yet, go check out The American Way of Death and read it for yourself because it is well written, often tongue in cheek funny, and absolutely an important read for anyone who may one day have to go through the funeral process.