Friday, February 28, 2014

It's bathing suit time...kill me now

Happy Friday Bleeps,

Yesterday was a lovely day off for me. With the Rock'n'Rull USA race just a little over two weeks away the plan was to get in a distance day. That was before I got sick and the snow came.

I let myself sleep in a little, not too much though. And then I prepared myself to go down into the basement for the treadmill. I made sure to have some breakfast and grab some water. I got down there around 9:30. The plan was for 6 miles walking. I started and I stumbled a little at first, but then I got into a good rhythm. I was feeling good. At the halfway point I stopped because I ran out of water and I needed to transfer my laundry to the dryer. As soon as I stopped I felt a little weak and lightheaded. I was suddenly reminded that I wasn't back to 100% yet. So I took a half hour break and got a little something else to eat.

And then I went back downstairs for the rest of my 6. I finished and my second half felt much better. I always do better after the first 3 miles. I really really wanted to run, but I just couldn't take a chance on getting worse. I felt really good. I was still weak and pushing it for another 2-4 miles would be a tad much for my body. The good news is that my brain felt better. I was able to ease some of the anxiety I was having over the race. I have been conditioning my body for distances for a long time now. I'm still in good shape. I'm not going to get the time that I had hoped for, but I shouldn't keel over either.

Now it was time to really enjoy my day. So I showered and and then got ready to head out. I put on my new tiny jeans and went to go pick up Ms. Bibble. We were going to lunch. We didn't know where, but we were going out.  Now I know I was still a little sick because it was past lunch time for me, I had done 6 miles, and I wasn't hungry. That's not normal for me.  

When I got to Ms. Bibble's we were discussing her her new scale. Even though I had done a distance and drank a ton of water I got on. I am down some pounds so that was good :-)

Also while I was there she had me watch some of the Tonight Show with Jimmy Fallon. He got in a twitter war with the Mayor of Chicago and was challenged to do the Polar Plunge this weekend for Special Olympics. He's gonna do it. I LOVE THAT! The best is that he's going to do it in a suit and asked people to wear a tie for their plunge in solidarity. I hope it all goes well for him.

Anyway, back to our lunch adventure.  We decided to head towards a busy area we like and we would make the decision where to go when something caught our attention. We settled on Chili's. They have a caribbean salad I enjoy so that's great.  Except that it's been a while since I've been there and the menu has changed.  Looking back now I can see the salad on the menu, but I had started to smell food and my hunger kicked in. We ordered the southwest eggrolls to split. YUM.

New on the menu are their Fresh Mex bowls. I saw chicken, corn, beans, avocados...and they had it in the lunch combo section. So I ordered it with a side salad.

It was good. I don't know if if's because I really can't taste things right now or if it was just missing that something special for me. But, it was fine. I just expected a little bit more, If I had gotten the sliders like I almost switched to I am certain I would have regretted it.

After lunch we decided to stop at Kohl's to check out some running gear and possible cruise wear. It's all good. I didn't see anything running wise that I wanted, so we hunted around for stuff for the cruise.

I found a shirt that is a familiar style to me. It's almost peasant-like, but cinches at the waist. I grabbed it to try on. And then I found a long sleeve hoodie shirt in a pale yellow that I thought would be a nice Jacket alternative. Oh I should have never gone into the dressing room. They both looked horrible on me. I mean that in a good way though. They weren't flattering on me. They used to be, but not anymore.

Okay, on to the bathing suits. The plan was just to see what's out there. Not sure what possessed me to go try them on. OMG I wanted to scream. First off, I should have gone to pee first. So I'm bloated from my water. I'm bloated from my workout. I'm bloated from all of the BEANS at lunch. Yeah, this was not my brightest idea.

I felt so good strutting around in my tiny jeans and then I morphed into the staypuff marshmallow woman trying on those suits. It brought tears to my eyes. It was not a good moment. And I know that it was a bad time to put them on, but I was out and feeling brave.

Afterwards we were walking through the pocketbooks because I want a small one for the cruise. I fell in love with this beautiful Vera Wang Blush Pink bag. This wouldn't be for the cruise. It would be for day to day. I told myself that it was too big. I didn't need it. I'm trying to eliminate my big bags, but oh how pretty it was.

We walked over to the sunglasses and jewelry just to look for fun. And then I realized that I wanted to get a pair of sunglasses for the cruise. I don't want to take my good Coach glasses. So I found a nice expendable pair. YEAH.

I was looking at earrings and I found this pretty set that had two pairs: one is a small diamond stud and one is a gold star filled with diamond studs. It's simple. It's understated. I liked it. I don't usually wear gold, but they spoke to me. I feel like a Star some days and I want to show that off.

I kept thinking about that bag and we went back for a second look. I still loved it. But, I decided to walk away. If I am still thinking about it next week I will go back for it.

While we were at Chili's we looked at the deserts, but opted to get something later. I really wanted something with ice cream because my throat has been killing me for the past week. And so we decided to go to the Friendly's for a milk shake. We decided to split a grilled cheese when we got there first because we weren't hungry, but if we had dessert now we would be starving late at night and that would be bad.

Forget the milkshake. I saw the Friendly-z on the menu and went for a vanilla ice cream with kit kat. Oh holy heck that was good. Soft serve vanilla is my favorite...throw in some kit kat and I was in heaven. It felt sooooo good on my sore throat...ahhh. But, by then my pants felt like they were going to pop off. Those beans were just filling me with gas. It was a tad uncomfortable. Argh.

When I got home I started to wonder about something. Did I really like that pocketbook or was it a reflex from the horrible fitting room experience? The Former Fat Girl splurged on pocketbooks and shoes because trying them on never made her feel fat. I've still been thinking about the bag so I'm not sure if that's the case, but it was something to worry me. I don't want to fall into a bad mental trap and have a setback.  I'm doing so well. I must only look forward. After all, there's a Caribbean destination in my future...

Looking back as I wrote this I was a little annoyed with my food choices. They sound so bad.  But, I kept my portions small and didn't finish everything. I got a wide variety of veggies in. So I won't be mad at myself. Besides, today I was totally rocking a pair of skinny jeans so it's all good.

Have a Blessed Night

Pledges for Run for Autism again can be made here:

****Please note****

If you feel like you are alone on your journey and you just need some encouragement I am here for you! Shoot me an email and I will do my best to check in on you or give you the words of support you need several times a week. The journey is so much easier if you have support.

Wednesday, February 26, 2014

Random Wednesday: I suck at being Sick

It's Random Wednesday Woo Woo!

Okay so I've got a cold....grr...and if there's anything we've learned it's that I am a terrible sick person. I am too impatient to get better. Saturday was a lovely day at Longwood Gardens and then Sunday I felt bad and Monday I felt like I had been hit by a truck. Nyquil was consumed. Sleep was had. I am back to a human again.

It irks me to no end that I can't workout when I'm sick. During my studies I learned that the general rule is if your belly is upset that's a no no, but if it's in the head then you can workout. Well I say know your body. If am coughing and can't catch my breath then I can't do cardio. I can do weights, but I don't really want to be touching things.   I was all set to go to the gym for a light walk tonight, but then I had a stuffed nose all day. Foiled again.

I can't risk setbacks...and so I came home.


I feel like I am in Subway Mania. I've had Subway for the past three days. I stopped on my way home the last two nights because I have overdosed on soup and I didn't feel like cooking anything.  And then today I had lunch plans and Subway was selected. I should get a paid endorsement.


Many people have been asking me lately on my thoughts on The Biggest Loser Finale. I hope to write my recap tomorrow and my thoughts this weekend.


So yes, I've been sick...and the Daytona 500 was red flagged for 6 hours. By the time it started again I was passing out. So I didn't really get to see Tony Stewart much on Sunday...but my brother did. He was kind enough to text me a photo of Tony Stewart in the back of the truck in front of him during Driver Introductions...#Jealous

Hey Tony Stewart, CALL ME!


Tomorrow is a day off for me. Thank goodness. I took it because I needed a distance day BADLY before my race in two weeks. Between the snow and this dumb cold I'm pretty much toast. Oh I'll finish. I may be crawling across the finish line, but by golly I will do it.

At this point I don't know what I'll be like in the morning. I certainly can't get the 10-12 miles in that I was hoping for. I just have to see what my lungs will allow. I just have to be careful that I don't end up in worse shape. I would rather go in to the race fully prepared to walk the whole thing rested than risk being carted off with bronchitis.


Old Navy is having a Jeans sale today!  I got a smaller pair without even trying them on...and they fit :-)


I got my tax return! That means I can start shopping for Cruisewear!

Have a Blessed Night.

Pledges for Run for Autism can be made here:

Check out my Facebook Page for Confessions (there are before and work-in-progress pictures):

yeah, sorry, I messed up and the "l" is missing....I need an assistant :-)

Don't forget to follow me on Twitter: hugsnsmile

Instagram: Jennie5973

Tuesday, February 25, 2014

Hair Meltdown

Hello Beautiful People,

Last week I had a hair meltdown.  I was ready go straight from work and chop my hair. I really want to grow out my hair for Locks of Love again, but I was really really unhappy with my hair of late.

So I put the question out there on facebook. I knew how my wording was. I wanted people to talk me into growing it out. And pretty much every vote was to grow it...except for my mom who has been pushing for me to cut it for months. She loves my hair short.

It didn't work. I was still ready to go chop my hair.  I wasn't feeling well and headed straight home after work. The plan was formulating in my head to just pull over and cut it. I shower at night and so in the morning I just wet my hair then dry and style it. It's not the same. It doesn't look as good. I end up putting it in little pony tails most days. Which is ironic since pony tails are what I missed most with my short hair.

I talked myself down off the ledge though. I decided to pick up some hair color and lighten it up. Generally that makes me feel better. If I still had the urge to cut my hair after the coloring then I would do it.

The X factor in this is that I was going for my passport photo the next day too. This would be my photo for the next 10 years. On then there's the cruise..I want nice hair for the cruise!  I want easy hair for the cruise.

Easy...Not only is my short hair cute, it's also easy. I'm struggling with time right now. Clearly the fact that days go by between blog posts right now ought to tell you that. So easy hair would be a bonus.

What I keep going back to though is something that Ken Paves said on the Makeover episode of the Biggest Loser this Season. He inferred that sometimes if you don't make a change when our body is changing than you will always see the old you. And I think that's true. The longer my hair gets the more I feel like I'm taking steps backwards. I see photos of my short hair and my face and body look so small. I see photos of my longer hair and I see a bigger face and a bigger body. Not even by that much, but enough to make me feel like that's me now.   Right now my association with longer hair is with The Former Fat Girl.

I colored my hair Saturday morning and I trimmed my bangs. I looked good. I will keep it long for now. I know Locks of love is a good thing. I really do want to do it again, but if the risk is a mental set back, then I will be cutting it for my sanity. Right now it's staying long until at lease April when my schedule changes.

Have a Blessed Night

Pledges for Run for Autism again can be made here:

****Please note****

If you feel like you are alone on your journey and you just need some encouragement I am here for you! Shoot me an email and I will do my best to check in on you or give you the words of support you need several times a week. The journey is so much easier if you have support.

Sunday, February 23, 2014

Cheat Day: Orchid Extravaganza, Wings, and an upset Belly

Happy Daytona 500 Day!  Woo Woo!

Right now I'm bundled up under blankets in the basement watching Tony Stewart race in the Daytona 500. Woo Woo!  Hey Tony Stewart, when you are done racing feel free to Call Me!  So you'll have to forgive me if I get a little excited. I have missed him so.

 Yesterday was a lovely day. It was a beautiful day. The sun was shining. The sky was blue. It was not that cold out. It was the perfect day to go to Longwood Gardens to finally see the Orchid Extravaganza that I had been hoping to see for two years now. I finally got to go. It was on the plan for last weekend, but weather kept my co-gardeners away. This weekend nothing was going to stop me. Not even the beginnings of a cold. Bah. Friday night I felt like crap when I got home. I pretty much passed out. But, after a good night's sleep I felt refreshed in the morning.

So around lunchtime I went and picked up Ms. Bibble and her wheelchair and off we went. Before we hit LG, as I now call it, we went for lunch. She had a coupon for a restaurant close by and we were in the mood for breakfast for lunch. It was perfect. I got an omlet with spinach and cheese. It came with home fries and toast.  She got the french toast combo that came with eggs, bacon, and sausage.

When the waitress put the plates on the table my first thought was "where are the to-go containers?" There was no way we could eat that much. We shared our meals and before we know it the plates were cleared. what?  Well okay, I had had soup for dinner two nights in a row...I guess I was kind of hungry.  And I would be walking around a lot so that's okay. The problem is that dinner was a planned cheat day. We'll deal with that later. It's time to get to LG.

We don't have a handicapped parking pass, but we somehow scored a prime spot. The place was packed. People come out in droves when we get a nice day.   Ms. Bibble was good with wheeling herself around, but I would be called upon to assist on hills and difficult areas...and there were a lot of hills.

When we first walked into the Conservatory I am just hit with how gorgeous it is. I love flowers. I love gardens. The beauty is not lost on me.

It was a wonderful day to just walk around and stop and smell the flowers. There isn't a lot to recap since we spent the whole time taking pictures and exclaiming how beautiful every single display was. So I'll just share some of my favorite photos from the day.

Pushing the wheelchair up the hills was a nice workout on the legs and butt, but maintaining control while going down a hill was a little hard on the knees. I made it through though. I fully enjoyed walking around outside. It was glorious.

We were going out to watch the Syracuse/Duke game afterwards so we had some time to kill. I was very thirsty so we went to the restaurant  to get something to drink...and a little snack because my blood sugar felt low. I got a bottle of water to carry around and a drink to caffeine me up....and a brownie. Dang it.

After that we took another spin around the Conservatory. It was less crowded and the flowers were still beautiful. It was delightful.

And then it was time to head out to Buffalo Wild Wings...we had a game to get ready for.

The plan was to split wings: honey bbq and buffalo. We got some potato wedges too...we got them with queso, but didn't really love them. We also got carrots and celery. The food was good, but I knew early on I was going to have a hard time. So I got some diet soda to help with the burping. We split 18 boneless wings. It wasn't that much, but my belly felt ginormous. I was burping a little, but it wasn't really helping. So I got another soda. I struggled because I knew I needed more water, but that would only fill me and not help relieve the pain. And this much caffeine so late in the day could not be a good thing.

Okay so we wanted to stay to watch the full game...I considered ordering a drink drink, but I was a driver. So we ordered the cinnamon bites. They were small and tasted like french toast. I really really should have stopped before that. We didn't even finish them.

The game ended horribly and my belly was not doing too well. When I got home I could not get my jeans off fast enough. I continued to burp and get a little relief, but not nearly enough. My belly was just plain uncomfortable.  And I couldn't fall asleep. Ugh.

This morning I woke up and my belly felt so much better. This is the second cheat day in two weeks that has made me sick. It's a good thing. It means my body is really can't tolerate things that are not good for me.  I kind of wish that applied to sweets since that's my downfall.

The scary thing is that this would have been nothing to the Former Fat Girl. She ate like that every day. But, she didn't walk around so much in between either. She would have needed to stop and take a seat in every room. Not this girl!   Last night I was mad at myself. I should have known that I would feel sick, but honestly I thought I might just feel full. I didn't really think it would do me in like that. So add wings to the list of Former Fat Girl Favorites that I now have bad associations with. I could choose to be mad at myself for making the food decisions yesterday, but instead I am going to focus on how far I have come. I have done such good work that my body doesn't tolerate certain things anymore.  Good job Jennifer!

PS-The Daytona 500 is red flagged due to weather...grr...I want Tony Stewart Back!

Have a Blessed Night.

Pledges for Run for Autism  can be made here:

Check out my Facebook Page for Confessions (there are before and work-in-progress pictures):

yeah, sorry, I messed up and the "l" is missing....I need an assistant :-)

Don't forget to follow me on Twitter: hugsnsmile

Instagram: Jennie5973

Wednesday, February 19, 2014

Random Wednesday: Soup, Cold, and Braids

Happy Random Wednesday Bleeps,

I keep forgetting to tell you one of my favorite moments from the Polar Plunge weekend. When I got home that night I was a Tweeting and got a Tweet from one of people that I follow. He was at the plunge and had seen me. He was on his way over to say hi, but was called to go to the beach. That was awesome. So we made plans to meet up next year. That was pretty sweet. I like being recognized. haha.


The other night I was on Face Time with my little Snuggle Buddy. He's into blowing kisses....melts Aunt Jennie's heart.


Today at lunch I went to the mall to pick up a gift for someone. And then I went into the store next to it to look at sports least favorite thing to try on....but I did it. Ugh...I can never plan on doing that because I will come up with a thousand excuses not to do it. I would rather try on bathing suits.   I tried on a few. I didn't buy, but I felt good with the sizes.  Plus, mine are getting too big...a good problem to have, but a problem as I am a little more bouncy than I would like.


 We are without heat I am wearing many a layer. Actually I have been wearing my running leggings under my jeans at work to stay warm. Wanna know a secret? I feel like a super hero when I go to the ladies room and reveal my spandex underneath. haha.  That plus wearing my reading glasses I can work it. haha.


The other night Aunt Sarah made the most awesome Italian Wedding Soup. Jealous? You should was FANTASTIC. Ironically I had picked up four cans of soup over the weekend and one of them was Italian Wedding soup. I don't know that I can have it is so not the same. I shall need to get the recipe before I move.


I want points!  The morning went by fast. So fast that by the time noon came around I didn't have time to eat my lunch before running to the mall. I was going to the mall with the food nose was assaulted with smells everywhere I pretzels...burgers...

I really really really wanted to get something...but, I did not.


Right now there was a commercial for a KFC pot pie...OMG I love pot pies! I want one RIGHT NOW!


The Syracuse games this week have just about killed me...tonight we lost, but I'm okay with it. There was a lot of pressure being we got the first loss out of the system...pressure is off...and I'm glad because the games have been too close and killing me.


I would like to send out prayer requests. Mr. Brian's mom, one of the sweetest ladies on the planet, is not doing so well. If love and support were all it takes to heal she would be good as new in no time, but it doesn't hurt to ask for more. 


My brain is on Cruise control...hahaha get it!  All I can think about it going shopping for new bathing suits and cruise wear....I have decided I'm going to make it a healthy cruise. I may indulge in a drink or two, but that's all. I need to stay hydrated and in good shape for running the track on the deck. Yep, I'm nerdy like that.


I am happy to report that I got to see Gym Buddy Lisa Twice this week!  I think I had seen her that many times since October last year.  It was nice to have a buddy again.


I have not gotten to watch as much of the Olympics as I would like...but, I have seen some Curling and that makes me happy. Woo Woo!


Okay, my hair is getting  longer. Part of me really really wants to cut it. But, I have a vision for that finish line in December and in it there are long long I will keep growing it out.

Have a Blessed Night

Pledges for Run for Autism again can be made here:

****Please note****

If you feel like you are alone on your journey and you just need some encouragement I am here for you! Shoot me an email and I will do my best to check in on you or give you the words of support you need several times a week. The journey is so much easier if you have support.

Monday, February 17, 2014

Elementary School Reunion

Happy Monday Beautiful People,

So last we spoke I was on my way to my Elementary School Reunion. YAY!

When I was getting ready I of course wanted to look fanstastic!  I know I saw everyone last year, but I wanted to look even better this time. I still have that "they knew me as I was just begining to become the fat girl".  I settled on some jeans and a pretty sweater. I didn't go with my tight tight jeans because I would be eating.

OH yeah...we are meeting at Buckley's where Mr. Chucky, Chuck to those who didn't know him way back when, is the Manager. You may remember it as the place with the Bison Burgers...I have been salivating thinking about it for weeks.

The Reunion is more than just students. We went to a very small school and for some of us our parents worked there. So it wasn't just students, but teachers too. My friends' parents were my Principal and Teachers. We were very close.  Unfortunately, some were not able to make it yesterday due to weather and illnesses.  We will just have to do it again.

Since we had a large group we were seated in the back room. It was around 3pm so it was after lunch and before dinner. That can only mean one thing: appetizers. I was a little hungry, but I didn't want anything to fill me up. I saw hummus and pita chips on the menu...sold!

It was soooo yummy...but that was a LOT of hummus. Between that and the glasses of water I was drinking I was actually a little full when my burger came. And I had been drinking a couple of diet cokes to try to make me burp.  Didn't work.

So we had our appetizers and everyone was enjoying their beverages. We were visiting and having a lovely time. When is she going to take our meal orders????  I was talking and having fun, but in the back of my head I am screaming "I WANT MY BURGER!"  I was good though. And it turned out that only a few of us ordered food. Oh heck no, It was closing in on 6pm. I needed food.

I got my burger with sweet potato fries. They were yummy...but I didn't want to fill up on them. I needed to tackle that burger. I'm sorry, I was so hungry I did not take a picture. I was too focused on getting it in my mouth.

I was full. There was really no need to order dessert...and there was no way that I could have one to myself. So Ms. Jen and I split a tiramisu...

As you can see by the impression of the fork, it was not very big...but holy heck it was unbelievable... Let me just say that when I was done I felt like someone was going to say "I'll have what she's having.".

 Before we left I made sure to get a photo for those who could not make it. Spouses and parents opted not to be in the picture, even though they are very welcome because we love them too!

Buckley's has a PJ Brunch on Sunday and we are planning on having a "Students" gathering soon...Breakfast in my pjs at a restaurant...we used to go years ago and I'm dying to get back for it. Breakfast is by far my favorite meal of the day. I love breakfast for lunch and dinner.

I had such a wonderful time and I didn't want to leave...however, I was super uncomfortable. My pants were a lot tighter than when I first got there.  When I got home I had some ginger ale and the burps started to come and I had some relief. Today my belly was a little iffy...the burger wasn't bad. Please don't think that. However, I rarely eat red meat any more...I mean seriously, I can count on one hand the number of times I have had it in 2014. And I had steak on Saturday and then the burger on Sunday. My belly just wasn't loving it. There's a post in there somewhere about why would we want to build up a tolerance to something that makes us feel bad, but not tonight. Tonight we are just thankful that we had a wonderful time with some old friends who are more like family. And now we rest.

Have a Blessed Night.

Pledges for Run for Autism  can be made here:

Check out my Facebook Page for Confessions (there are before and work-in-progress pictures):

yeah, sorry, I messed up and the "l" is missing....I need an assistant :-)

Don't forget to follow me on Twitter: hugsnsmile

Instagram: Jennie5973 

Sunday, February 16, 2014

Eyeball Sanity...and most of my Weekend

Happy Sunday Bleeps!

So it's been a few days. My apologies.  However, I have decided that on days when I work from home I need to just log off of the computer at 5pm and call it a night...for my eyeball sanity. And on that note, I worked from home Thursday and Friday last week. Ugh...Tomorrow is a work holiday. However, my client does not have off. I was originally going to ask to work from home, but I'll lose my mind if I do that. So as of now I am planning on going in to work.

I had planned on my workout Thursday to be shoveling snow related. However, the shovel fairy visited and took care of me. So the new plan was to do some yoga. My joints were stiff from sitting in the cold all day.   So I did a "stress reliever" yoga. OH man...I know my hips were a little tight, but I had NO idea...I was in physical pain. I felt so good after though. I will need to do this one more often.

Friday after work I really wanted to do Yoga again, but cabin fever won out. I shut down at 5 and left the house. It felt so good to get out. I went to Grandmom's first to see how she was. It was a quick visit since she had a Valentine's Party to get to.  So then I went to Starbucks just to read and relax. I realize that reading is also a strain on my eyes, but it's a release for my brain so that's ok. Except that I forgot my reading glasses and the lights were so dim that it was hard to read. I had gotten a hot chocolate and the small black and white cookies...sadly I think they were stale. Boo.

Saturday morning we were expecting more snow. My goal was to get to the store as soon as possible.  I opted for Wal-Mart because they have a Subway in it. I could get there on time for a breakfast sandwich. I was a little too excited. I got a flatbread with egg whites, pepper jack cheese, ham, spinach, and tomatoes. Sooo yummy. With my belly full I could continue my shopping. Except I hadn't factored in one was the day after Valentine's Day...there were sales on chocolate.

My basket was full of good stuff: bananas, wheat bread, soup, peanut butter...would I violate it with valentine's stuff?  I didn't want to and there really wasn't room. On that note, my back was killing me. I was only there for 15 minutes and the weight of the basket was throwing my back out of alignment. I should have gotten a cart, but a cart is a license to put more stuff that I don't need in it. So I endured my pain and moved on. I walked past the Valentine's aisle...everything was 50% off...I saw these little hearts with 4 pieces of chocolate that were marked down to $0.50. I caved. But, all things considered 4 pieces of chocolate was pretty good.

I finally did my nails when I got back...oh that felt good. I took care of my feet and hands. They needed some TLC.

And then it was back to Grandmom's to pick her up. Cousin Shain's basketball team was in the playoffs. It was a big game. We needed to be there to cheer him on. No outside food or drinks are allowed because they want you to buy from the concession stands...I saw people with hot dogs and I wanted one so bad. I wasn't hungry, but there's something about having a hot dog at a game. I didn't get one.

I forced myself to stay seated and not get any. Of course this also meant that my butt was getting numb. By the end of the game my butt was sore. It was numb from sitting and the vibrations from the student section stomping their feet. They won so it was all good.

And then we came home for a dinner birthday party for cousin Michaela. Steaks, twice baked potatoes, green beans, and cake....Oh heaven. I was good. It was sooo yummy and I really REALLY wanted to get up for seconds, but I let my stomach catch up and I only had a little extra potatoes...and considering I only had a half with the first plate I was good.

Syracuse had a game and it was extremely close...too close..gave me anxiety and I wanted to eat...I didn't, but I still had that stupid urge.

So this morning when I woke up I was trying to plan my day. I was cozy in bed, but I needed to get up and run. Here's a little of the internal debate:

You haven't run in days. You need to get up.
It's cold and my bed is warm.
You have warm running clothes. GET UP.
You didn't drink enough water yesterday. You shouldn't do this.
This is becoming a habit. You need to get up.
Come on, just stay here and read a little...or blog.
You have a race coming up!  Did you forget that?

And that's what won. I forced myself to get up. I had an hour before I needed to get ready for church. I opted for a run on the treadmill in the basement. If I cramped or had knee problems then I would walk and then do some weights. I kept up a slow run. The knee hurt, but I kept it manageable. I finished my water bottle with 10 minutes to go (I changed it to 45 minutes with some arms).  I got thirsty.

I adjusted my run to what my body could handle. I still got in a 45 minute run and then I did some arm weights. I was sweaty and stinky...and I felt soooo good.

So I showered and went to Church. Then I stopped at Starbucks for some coffee and a bagel. I was STARVING by then. Do you know what today is?  It's the start of a new Treat Receipt...if you bring your receipt back after 2pm you get any bakery item for $1...Why? WHY must you tempt me so???

I quickly ran home and put together my taxes. I got them done and then changed to head out to the reunion.

And that's where I shall leave you for the night...I am extremely tired and I need to get to bed since I'm one of 3 people in the world that is working tomorrow (at least that's how it feels).

Have a Blessed Night

Pledges for Run for Autism again can be made here:

****Please note****

If you feel like you are alone on your journey and you just need some encouragement I am here for you! Shoot me an email and I will do my best to check in on you or give you the words of support you need several times a week. The journey is so much easier if you have support.

Wednesday, February 12, 2014

Random Wednesday: Cruise Time, Snow, and the Scale

Happy Random Wednesday Bleeps!

I have exciting news. The cruise has finally been scheduled!  HOLLA!  I will be going to the Bahamas the week before my birthday...what I wouldn't give for that to be tomorrow.  Needless to say, I have had Cruise on my brain for 24 hours. 


You may have noticed that I haven't done a recap on The Biggest Loser finale yet. Well there are a couple of reasons. First, I'm just behind.  Second, I want to think about how to approach it. I think I am just going to recap and then I will have a reaction follow up post later.


So Saturday I went up to spend the day with Cousin Kim and Miss Cassidy. I put on my new size 6 teeny tiny jeans. I wanted to break them in. I did bring a pair of sweatpants in case I hit a moment when I couldn't button up again after using the ladies room (a little terrified of that happening). I did change, but not until it was time to go and I put them on for a warmth factor. Pretty excited. I heart my little jeans.

I get very frustrated when I see my rolls of fat through my gym. It makes me feel like I have so far to go, but then I put on my little jeans and remember that I am getting smaller and I'm good.


The morning that I went in to Philly I decided to bust out the scale and just see how I was doing. I really don't remember the last time I weighed myself.   I kept stepping on it and it kept saying "Err" better just need new batteries and not a reflection on my weight.


I have declared Tuesdays my "To Do List Tuesdays". I need to make sure that I get at least 3 things knocked off of my To Do List. I just have to make sure that I don't fall in the trap of "Oh well I'll do that on Tuesday" and just pile it all on there.


I did NOT want to go to the gym tonight. With the impending storm coming I just wanted to run to the grocery store and run home.  But, I will be working from home for at least tomorrow if not Friday also. We all know how I have been fairing with my workouts (although I'm fairly certain I will get a shovel workout tomorrow). And so it was very important for me to get to the gym tonight. It wasn't a long workout, but it was a workout. Something is better than nothing. :-)

I even made sure to walk at lunch. Ms. Tracey and I got in a mile and a half at lunch. We got a little distracted by a monster sale at Bath & Body Works...


Sunday I caved. I ran into Girl Scouts and I bought some cookies. I got the Cranberry Citrus shortbreads. I was intrigued and I knew they had a better chance of survival if there was no chocolate involved.


So when I said that I wanted to go to the Grocery Store tonight I really wanted to go stock up on chocolate....I did not stop. I knew I would just eat it all tomorrow.  So we're calling it a win...until I am trying to walk to the store in 2 feet of snow to get myself a snickers bar.


It's time to freshen up your playlist :-)
Here's the full list, according to votes placed at Run Hundred--the web's most popular workout music blog.

Enrique Iglesias & Pitbull - I'm a Freak - 128 BPM

Neon Trees - Sleeping with a Friend - 107 BPM

Jerrod Niemann - Drink to That All Night - 116 BPM

Martin Garrix - Animals - 127 BPM

Macklemore, Ryan Lewis, Schoolboy Q & Hollis - White Walls - 116 BPM

Fitz & The Tantrums - Out of My League - 85 BPM

Shakira & Rihanna - Can't Remember to Forget You - 139 BPM

Lea Michele - Louder - 126 BPM

Grouplove - Ways to Go - 101 BPM

Lady GaGa, R. Kelly & Rick Ross - Do What U Want (DJWS Remix) - 99 BPM

To find more workout songs, folks can check out the free database at Visitors can browse the song selections there by genre, tempo, and era—to find the music that best fits with their particular workout routine

It's Tip your skin extra dry right now? Drink some water :-)  Well drink lots of water. Crazy as it sounds, but it hydrates your Whole body :-)

Have a Blessed Night.

Pledges for Run for Autism  can be made here:

Check out my Facebook Page for Confessions (there are before and work-in-progress pictures):

yeah, sorry, I messed up and the "l" is missing....I need an assistant :-)

Don't forget to follow me on Twitter: hugsnsmile

Instagram: Jennie5973 

Monday, February 10, 2014

Polar Plunge Weekend 2014

Hello Beautiful People,

I am happy to tell you all about Polar Plunge weekend.  I have said it before, and I'll say it again: Hands down my favorite weekend of the year!

There tends to be a little confusion when I tell people that there is a 5K race and a Plunge. The immediate question is: Do you run into the water after the run?  Well you can, but the events are on two separate days. The 5K is on Saturday and the Plunge is on Sunday. They both take place at 1pm.

I got down to Dad's a little late on Friday night. I was beat and just wanted to go to bed.  I had things to do so I got up a little early on Saturday. The race started at 1, but packet pick up started at 11am. And believe me, you get there early. It may be February at the beach, but parking during Polar Plunge weekend feels like it's July.

So now factor in there that I still need to eat lunch.

Dad came with me and dropped me off to pick up my packet. While I was in the tent I noticed that once again the course was being altered due to ice on the boardwalk. Well that was no surprise. They had gotten a ton of snow the week before.  I got my packet and went to look for some food. I think I have race day amnesia. My head says "There's a Subway", but it seems to forget that it is closed for the season. My lunch has to be quick so I can't go to a place with waitstaff. So my options are: Grottos pizza, Five Guys Burgers, or Thrashers French Fries. Um...I had this problem last year too. I opted for the Five Guys Burgers. Simply put: I love Grottos pizza, but I don't trust that it won't run through me during the race...sorry.  I get the small burger with steak sauce and skip fries. So I munch on peanuts while I wait for my food and for Dad.

I am over dressed. The sun is shining and the wind is light. There may be snow on the ground, but the temperatures are in the 50's. So I drop my pants right there while I wait for my food. haha. Relax, I had sweatpants over my running leggings. I also had my sweatshirt on over my running shirt. I brought my jacket to wear during the race. There is a chance that I won't need it, but it's been frigid so I take no chances.

That leads me to my plan for the day. I was flip flopping like crazy. On one hand, I love walking with the walkers who are there year after year. On the other hand, I need a good run in to get a gauge on where I stand for next month's race. If I walk, I will definitely need the jacket when we are closer to the ocean. If I run, I will probably overheat.

Okay, so I got my food and Dad arrived and placed his order. If you go to Five Guys you know what it's like when you order fries. Just order a small. You get a large portion. So I had a few of dad's but we were getting closer to start time and I didn't want more in my belly. I don't ever run right after lunch so this is always a little tough of my body.   The other issue is that I didn't drink that much water. I drank some, but not enough...only construction porta pottys on the route (which by the way I'm pretty sure the same house has been doing construction for 3 years).

I got my text that my Plunge team was at the start line so we headed out. It was mobbed. Sooo many people were participating. It warms my heart. I found my non-running team, but it was too mobbed to find the runners. They would out pace me anyway so it was ok. I would see them after.

The race started and off we went. I started running. I still had time to talk to people for the rest of the weekend. I really needed to see where my body was.  It wasn't long before I got the dehydration cramp...argh. I had my bottle of water with me and so I made sure to finish it during the race. Once I got the cramp under control the burps started...oh yeah, I remember this from last year...gotta plan ahead next time. Save the Five Guys for AFTER the race. I will pack a lunch next time.

I think we know how inspired I am by the Special Olympians. I've gotten to know several from these years. I saw my buddy Richard again. He's so positive and fun to talk to. And for the past two years I noticed a young lady who just smoked me. This year I was able to keep up with her and stayed with her and her running buddies. Her name is Liz. She had a running coach and a buddy named Preston. They totally motivated me to keep moving even though I wanted to heave my burger. We cheered each other on for a mile and then I started to feel better. I took off, but they were not far behind me.

About halfway through I wanted to take all of my clothes off. How could it be so hot when we were practically Eskimos a couple days ago. So I pulled over and took my jacket off. I seriously would have taken my shirt off and just run in a sports bra, but I'm not that brave my girls sometimes pop out.

The burps returned with half a mile to go and I was feeling nauseous. I just wanted to stop and walk the rest of the way. I allowed myself a minute walk just to calm my stomache, but then I got going again...Let's See How Far We've Come came always comes on when I need it most. And so I ran.

My time was okay. It wasn't horrible, but it wasn't what I had hoped. But, I know why. I know it had to do with water and lunch. I can fix that.

Dad and I headed to the boardwalk to head over for food. We noticed a bunch of people going in the water. I was so hot I wanted to jump in with them.

Before we got to the refreshment tent we ran into my Plunge team. So we visited for a little bit, but I was starving. The best part of this race is the vodka penne pasta after the race...and the salt water taffey.

While I was sitting and eating my body temp started to cool and I immediately had to put layers back on. I was sweaty and getting chilly. Plunge packet pick up wasn't for another 2 hours. We could find somewhere to hang until then or we could go back to the house and I could shower and come back. The shower won out.

I had to make it quick though. There was a BIG Syracuse Hoops game on at 6:30. I showered and drove back to the beach. I didn't want to drive around looking for a parking spot so I pretty much took the first one I saw. My first stop: Hot Chocolate!  I have two favorite places: Cafe a Go Go (which we discovered at Thanksgiving) and The Coffee Mill. The first is closed for the season so I went to the Coffee Mill...and got one of my favorites: German Chocolate Hot Chocolate. Basically it's hot chocolate with coconut...uh YUM!

The line was a little long to pick up my packet but that's ok. So many people raising money and having fun. Every time there is someone who raised more than $2000 they shot off a confetti gun and made an announcement. While I was there they did it 3 times. Gotta love it.

After I got my stuff I went to look at the souvenirs. There was a shirt that I liked that morning but they didn't have all of the sizes. They only had a fits. I got it. :-)

So now I had to make one more stop. My hair dryer died and I needed a new one. I could stop at CVS, but I had checked my bag and I did not have a safety "1 piece" to wear for the Plunge. When you are running and people are taking video and pictures you need to know that you are not going to pop out. So I headed towards Walmart.

Right past it was Aeropostale. So I ran there first. They had a couple pairs of 6 short. Grabbed em without even trying them on. I was on a time crunch. And BONUS one of them was on sale for $6.50...SCORE!

Then I ran to Walmart. They had a small selection on one pieces. Most were um...not supportive as they were still missing most of the sides and a couple were too supportive as if I was in competitive swimming. I did find a pretty black tankini top that had some support in it. So I got it. I already had bottoms so I would be okay.  I think.

So I rushed home and got there just in time for Tip Off. My Boys were taking on Duke. This was a HUGE game. To me it was bigger than the Super Bowl happening the next  night.  We are talking HUGE. So we watched the first half and then bolted to Tequila Mockingbird for dinner to watch the second half.

I was anxious over the game and totally not paying attention.  It wasn't until my salad came (without the tortilla shell) that I realized I had just munched on chips and salsa for about 10 minutes straight...I can't even think about the water retention and the bathing suit the next day. UGH.  

The game was awesome..and so exciting. It was dubbed an instant Classic. I was so into it that I didn't even order a margarita...I just was not paying attention. haha.

Sunday morning I got up and went to church for the early service. I would just be cutting it too close if I went to the later one. I had a small breakfast thinking I would have something a little later before the Plunge.

Plunge time was 1pm, but again you have to get there early. I needed to find my team and use the ladies room. We arrived at noon and it took us 30 minutes to park and walk down the boardwalk. I'm not kidding when I say it's crowded.

I came prepared for the cold this year. The experienced Plunger wears a robe to keep warm. It makes sense. So I made my robe my Plunge road. I haven't used it in forever so it was perfect. Under the robe I had my bathing suit and Polar bear fleece pj bottoms. I usually wear my fake uggs, but this time I just carried them and wore my flip flops. It was so warm that I was overheating under the robe. Say what???

It came off for part of the walk...and then we hit a spot with with a crosswind and it cooled down considerably.  Robe back on! 

My first order of business was to run to the ladies room...the line is always super long. I don't get why people choose to change there. You know where you are going. Put your bathing suit on before you come. Luckily it moves fast.

When I was done I met my group. My dad and Stepmom went on the hunt for some food. I'm hungry!  I got my group sweatshirt and t-shirt. This is new. We had a corp sponsor this year. This was on top of the Plunge sweatshirt. YEAH!  I heart them both. And then I went on a hunt. Every year there is a gentleman who collects cash and then matches the total for the day. His son participates in the Special Olympics and he wants to do anything he can to support them. There were bins and collections all over for him. So I made sure to get out some cash the day before and go find him. They announced that he collected $18,000 and matched it this year. I heart him!

It was a beautiful, but it was clear the temperature did drop. It had dropped 9 degrees in a half hour. WHAT???  I mean it was still somewhat warm, but goodness. I made sure to go get my complimentary hot chocolate before we went on the beach. When we started walking down there the Air Temperature was 49 degrees and the water Temperature was 34. Um...this would be my first plunge in which the water was colder than the air. Usually it's the reverse...(air 39 and water 47) was going to be cold.

We took our group photo and headed down to the Party on the sand (the dj was playing beach themed music....although I'm pretty sure "Hot Hot Hot" didn't apply). The um walk down the opening to the beach was a bit was half muddy sand and half frozen sand, but we made it.

Normally I am dreading the moment when we disrobe to bathing suit. I held it off to til the last possible moment the last two years. This year it was not a problem.  Even the sand wasn't that cold. How is this possible???

Our team had a young lad with us. AJ is 2 yrs old and making his first plunge. So we held back after the countdown to the plunge. We waited to most people went in before we ran down. Not gonna lie, it was cold!  The tankini top worked out...but um...the bottoms started to fall of. How did I miss that? They are fine for walking and laying down, but get them wet and start running and I was moments away from mooning (or sunning) thousands of people.

When we got back to our area to dry off. I was refreshed. And then someone asked AJs sister if she had fun and wanted to do it again. She said yes. So we dropped our towels and ran back down. Again, almost lost my plan for next year: I envision a Baywatch red one piece.

This time while we were drying off I started to feel chilled. My legs were a little cold. There was no hurry to get dressed though. I was thoroughly enjoying the moment. And so was everyone else. So many people were hanging on the beach.

When we made it back to the boardwalk it was pizza time...YEAH! I was STARVING...but there was no way I was stuffing my face before plunge. I had two small slices.

This year Plunge weekend raised $750,000. I could not be prouder and CANNOT wait until next year.

Have a Blessed Night

Pledges for Run for Autism again can be made here:

****Please note****

If you feel like you are alone on your journey and you just need some encouragement I am here for you! Shoot me an email and I will do my best to check in on you or give you the words of support you need several times a week. The journey is so much easier if you have support.

Sunday, February 9, 2014

Something is better than Nothing

Happy Sunday Bleeps,

And how are you on this beautiful snowy Sunday night?   OMG forget North Carolina, I am ready to move to the Bahamas right now! This cold and snow is really getting to me mentally and physically.

Physically I'm cold yes, but my body is getting used to that. Shoot I'm going outside with no coat if the sun is shining. My body is adjusting. However, there is one thing that is not adjusting. My joints are so stiff and sore it's not even funny. It's making it very hard to get my running in.  My knees are hurting before I even get out there.

Several times this last week I have woken up with swollen hands. My fingers were swollen and it it hurt to type for work. It got better as I warmed up, but it's not fun.

So there's the physical part that I'm struggling with, but the mental is worse. And it's not quite what you think.

I have worked from home 4 days in the last two weeks. I am thankful for that option. I don't want to drive in dangerous conditions if I don't have to.  My new rule is that if everything is closed around me then I am staying home and working. One of the mornings was clear when I would have been leaving for work, but by the time I would have been halfway there it was messy and slick and just awful.

While I am thankful for the option to stay home for safety reasons, I hate it personally. I tend to get tunnel vision and barely move. I literally have to put "Get up and move around" on my calendar or set my alarm on my phone.  Normally I can deal with it, but I am currently transitioning off of 2 accounts and back on to an old account. It's very busy and hectic. By the time I get to take lunch, if I get to take one, I feel like I'm coming out to the daylight after months in the dark. I try to drink as much water as possible, but I'm cold and so I'm generally trying to drink warm drinks. So I'm not quite getting the water intake that I want on top of it all.

I try very hard not to consume extra calories on days that I am not moving enough to burn them off. That's why my rule of: "If you buy it you will eat it" is so key. I feel like a caged animal and look for anything and everything to eat. Food wise I was pretty good these past couple of frigid weeks at home. But exercise wise, I failed miserably. And I am MAD.

Fine, I couldn't get to the gym. That's no excuse. I have the tools and resources at home to get a good workout in. I could use the treadmill. I could do a yoga dvd. I could do weights. I could make it an abs/push ups night. I could do so much. But did I? No. Why?  I can give you a couple of reasons.  The first is that I know my body and I know my water intake. I don't do well with running or walking if I am not completely hydrated from the day. I know I wasn't at all. Now, that doesn't mean I couldn't do something light. I just didn't.

The second is that I couldn't get myself together mentally. I had a bunch of things on my To Do list and I rationalized that it was okay to not workout because I had other things I needed to get done and out of the way. Did I do them? Nope. I was like a vegetable. And it pissed me off. In all fairness I had my period during one of those weeks and considering the stressful days we are just lucky that everyone made it out alive.

This really bothers me. I know better. I know what I need to do. I know that I will feel better. There are no excuses. Something is better than nothing. I am so mad at the cold right now. I'm mad at what it's doing to my body. I'm mad at what it's doing to my head. I'm mad at myself for letting it get to me. I'm mad that I let work get the best of me these past couple of weeks. My health and well being is not worth the sacrifice.

I am so behind on my training right now. My time for Rock'N'Roll USA next month is not going to be great. My knees are just not up to the training right now. When I say they are stiff and sore, that is during the run. Usually I feel it after. Right now I'm feeling it during and so all of my runs in 2014 so far have been scaled back or cut short abruptly. And on top of that I need to pad my recovery days. I would love to have a body that would allow me back to back running days, but I don't. And right now I'm not even getting them with just one day in between. *insert sad face*

Today was a planned distance day on the treadmill. Did I do it? No. day got away from me. The good news is that I really did knock a lot of things off of my to do list. The bad news is that once again I was not getting the water intake that I needed. The good news is that I finally did and I've had to pee about 3 times since I started writing this. Of course that also makes me colder so now we are in a vicious cycle. haha.

Okay, before I go (because I want to prep a couple more posts to make things easier for the week) I want to share my Victory for the day. I hate complaining so we are going to end this on a very positive note. One of my To Do things today was to go get new running pants for the race for next month. Having my pants fall down while I'm running is getting to be very annoying. And so I went and took 7 pairs of medium spandexy running leggings into the fitting room. They all fit! And actually the only problems I had were with ones that were too long.  I almost tried on a small, but I was so happy about the mediums that I didn't want to take the chance of seeing my body trying to expel itself from the small. I wanted to relish in my Victory. I ended up getting two new pairs. Holla!  And I promise that if I can get in some good runs this week I will be trying on those small in a couple of weeks.

Have a Blessed Night.

Pledges for Run for Autism  can be made here:

Check out my Facebook Page for Confessions (there are before and work-in-progress pictures):

yeah, sorry, I messed up and the "l" is missing....I need an assistant :-)

Don't forget to follow me on Twitter: hugsnsmile

Instagram: Jennie5973 

Tuesday, February 4, 2014

Spending the Day in the City of Brotherly Love

Hello my Lovelies and Gents,

The Biggest Loser finale is on I have a little less than an hour to write this let's get started. (grr....I didn't make now I must write on commercials)

Last Thursday I had a wonderful day.  One of my besties from college was in town for a wedding. I had not seen her since graduation...19 years ago. Now a fun fact is that we have special nicknames for each other. She calls me Bobo and I call her Bubba.

We didn't have definitive plans, only that we would be hanging out. Her family was switching hotels during the day and since I had a little bit of a drive I would pick her up at 10am. That meant I got to sleep in. YEAH!

I knew it was going to be cold, but I had NO idea how cold. When I left the house at 8:30 it was 20 degrees. Brrrr...I was prepared though. I had on tights, knee socks, jeans, running shirt, sweatshirt, scarf, mittens, and my coat. I would have normally added my fur-lined boots, but we were going to be walking and that means that I needed my sneakers.

I had some breakfast headed out. Before I could get on the road I needed to stop for something warm to drink. I couldn't decide what I wanted so I went with an old comfort drink. I had a Vanilla Chai Tea Latte.

While I was on the way I got a text that they were switching hotels. My first thought was: yeah! It's so much closer to 95 for me and I know the area. My second thought was: Crap! I'm wearing a sweatshirt and ripped jeans to the Omni! 

I had been advised to park in the parking garage around the corner from them. By the time I got it was mostly full, but I did find a spot up on level J. I took the stairs down and was all of the way down to D when I questioned whether or not I had locked my back up I went...and then down again. A nice little workout there.

I was so excited to see Bubba. I have only seen her Christmas newsletters and had not met her husband and kids. She looks exactly like she did in college. Only with kids. haha. They had come in from Michigan and had driven to Hershey, PA the day before. They took the tour of the chocolate factory and I've gotta say that I was super uber jealous. I would have met them for that. I have never done that tour. I am not sure that you could get me to leave though. I asked her daughters what they got me. The response was cute: "Nothing, we didn't know you." I told them I was kidding, but they gave me the smallest bag of mini rolos ever. haha. Too cute.

*side note on the above picture, I LOVE that I could actually hang with Bubba's tininess. I have a lot of tiny friends just like me, but for the most part the Former Fat Girl was not as tiny as them.

We decided that as Syracuse girls we would brave the cold. Our first stop was a visit to see the Liberty Bell. I had seen it a couple of years ago while I was in the city to get a copy of my birth certificate. It was going to be nice to share it with a friend...and actually read all of the facts about it. I sort of only glanced last time.

It's a little sad how much we take for granted. I will let you in on a little secret. Every morning in my daily prayers I thank God that I was born in America and during this time. I am extremely thankful every day that I have as many rights as I do as a woman. The Liberty Bell represents Liberty and Freedom. People came from all over just to see glimpses of it when it toured the country. Would that happen today? Maybe, but I doubt to that extent.

We crossed the street to the Independence Visitor Center. We were checking out tickets for Independence Hall. They had a cool gift shop and we checked it out. They also have a very nice concession area (with Starbucks). And there are a couple statues to have fun with.

 They told us that you don't need timed tickets for January and February as they are the slowest months. So we ran to get some lunch. Okay, not so much run, as walk briskly the 6 blocks to the Reading Terminal Market.

Bubba lives in an area where the only places to eat are chains. She was happy to be in Philly to check out all of the neat places to eat. She loved the Reading Terminal Market. It was funny when we walked in. She said it reminded her of a a movie scene. Still riding my Hallmark Christmas movie marathon high I assumed she meant like a love story on Lifetime. Nope, it reminded her of chase scenes. haha. Oh I'm such a girl.

We walked around and she found a mediterranean stall and I went back to my breakfast stall. I originally wanted french toast, but I was soooo hungry by then that I got an egg, cheese and pork roll sandwich.  It was yummy and felt good in my belly.

Before we left I found some fudge. I hadn't gotten any in a long time. So I bought two small squares. I got a vanilla caramel and a chocolate raspberry. We also went into the little kitchen gadget shop. I picked up another tea infuser that I can take on my travels now without worrying about losing my Mickey one. Yeah!

We decided to skip Independence Hall and go visit the U.S. Mint. It was still in that area so we walked the 8 blocks to it and went in. Sorry, no pictures were allowed.  I have to say though, that I wasn't super excited about this. Ironically, I thoroughly enjoyed it. There was a video on how the currency system came about and then how the first coins were made. Back in the 1700's it took 3 years to make 1 million coins. Today it takes 30 minutes.

Then we went upstairs for our self tour. We got to see the process of making coins from the artistry to the actual molding of the coins. It was pretty cool. I loved hearing a little girl behind us say "It takes so long to make one coin and we spend it so easily." so true.

After the Mint we took another walk to the oldest residential street in the country, Elfreth's Alley. It's one cute block. I wanted to move in. There was still ice and snow so it was pretty, plus there were still Christmas wreaths up.

By now we were a little on the cold side. So we decided to go back to the Visitor Center for some hot chocolate and souvenirs.

It was such a fun day. I loved catching up with Bubba. And I loved walking around my city with her. I felt good. I would have even walked up the stairs back to my car, but I couldn't find them. I had to enter the garage through a different door and it led straight to the elevator. Oh well. I calculated that we walked 3 miles in the freezing bitter cold. I could afford the elevator. I'm proud of us Orange girls.

Before I go I will tell you that I struggled with my water intake. I carried a bottle of water around, but I didn't drink it. I was too paranoid about the bathroom situation. I just didn't want to get caught in a bad potty situation.

Have a Blessed Night

Pledges for the Polar Plunge for Delaware Special Olympics can be made here (it's still open):

AND I have signed up for Run for Autism again :-)

****Please note****

If you feel like you are alone on your journey and you just need some encouragement I am here for you! Shoot me an email and I will do my best to check in on you or give you the words of support you need several times a week. The journey is so much easier if you have support.

Monday, February 3, 2014

The Biggest Loser: Season 15 Episode 14

The Biggest Loser: Season 15 Episode 14

While I was sad to discover that this week was only one hour, I was also happy to discover how much free time will have with just one hour. Woo Woo.

It's the last week on the Ranch. We are down to the Final Five: Rachel, David, Jennifer, Chelsea, and Bobby.

We begin with some reflection on their former selves from week 1.

Rachel says that the "Me at week 1 would be floored by me today."

David acknowledges that 'Defeat' was part of his vocabulary. Now he focuses on his Inner Warrior. "How do you like me now?"

Jennifer says that during the first workout she was nervous, apprehensive, and scared.

Chelsea believes that the girl at week 1 would not believe who she is today. She is so positive and wants to live life.

Bobby tells us that he hit rock bottom during week 1.

This week is the Biggest Loser Triathlon.

Bobby and Jillian have a talk. Swimming is not his strong suit. He is afraid of failure and has been an underdog his whole life. He's scared of disappointing his parents.  Jillian reminds him that his parents still love him. He needs to walk away with no regrets.  She then says that if he looked inside for validation, instead of looking to others, he could be the Biggest Loser.


Where are they now? - Tanya

When Tanya arrived at the Ranch she weighed 262 lbs. Today she weighs 174 and she looks amazing! Amazing!  She's in a hot little red wrap dress.

She remembers the unhappy mother that arrived at the Ranch. Today she walks around the gym like she owns it. She hears Dolvett's voice in her head during every workout.

Tanya has been in the fast food industry for 2 years. And now she's opening a new restaurant: Livin Soul. It's with healthy comfort food. "I wanna feed ya and I want it to be healthy."

Goodness I want to try it! I am soooo proud of her.


Challenge America

Do you collect Box tops for schools? I do!  Box tops are located on many different cereals, soups, snacks, and toilet paper containers. They can be exchanged for money for schools.  It generally gets used for programs that would otherwise be cut, due to budget.

Dolvett and his son are in Virginia Beach with a bunch of teachers. If they complete the workout he has designed for them they each will earn $5000 for their schools.  They do it. :-)


Triathlon time!

They will start with a .5 mile swim. That will be followed by a 12 mile bike ride. The race will conclude with a 3 mile run.  The winner will not only earn a spot in the finale, but they will also win a Ford Fusion Energy.

Ali introduces Jackie and Dan, the mother/son Orange team from season 5. They are spokespeople for the Biggest loser Run walk. They are very excited for this race to start and encourage the contestants. 

David's plan is to get in the water first and force Rachel to have to get around him. They are neck and neck running to the water, but Rachel gets past him just as they reach it. She is the 1st one in.

Bobby's plan is to remind himself to be calm. If he panics it will not be good.

David finally has the body that he thought he could have.

Bobby is struggling in the water and then remembers his conversation with Jillian. He is hearing her in in mind "fear will pass, but regret is forever."

Rachel finishes the swim in just under 10 minutes. Her focus is to make a smooth transition in the changing station.

David finishes second. He sees the bike and run as great equalizers. He has fallen in love with the bike.

Chelsea is on David's tail.

Bobby has one goal: to finish. He owes himself to finish.

Rachel finishes the bike portion in just under an hour. She starts her run. David is not far behind. His plan is to stick with his trained pace.

She's crying, just like me, at the finish line. Rachel finishes in first place.  She finished in 1:32. "I just grabbed a hold of my life again!". Ali reminds her that she's a finalist. She is finally taking control of her life. The athlete is back and will and is going to champion this life.

David is on the homestretch and reflecting on the past. He is an athlete. He is a warror and could not be happier.  He finishes in 1:57. He's not sad. "I stand here today a winner!".

Chelsea says that 14 weeks ago she struggled to walk up a pair of steps. She crosses the finish line in 2:11.

Jennifer says that the "old me came to the Ranch with so much guilt and a lack of self confidence. She finishes in 2:17.

Bobby finishes at 2:38. He is so happy and is at the end of something truly incredible.


Video Review time! 

It's time for them to sit down with the trainers and watch video of them throughout the season.

In Bobby's video he says that he feels like a like he's living a life sentence in his body.

Rachel feels like she had lost her identity.

Towards the end they show each family hugging them from makeover week. There are tears for everyone.

The last thing the see is a video they each made during their first week.

Jennifer tells herself that her dreams are unstoppable.She has become what she wanted to be.

David wants himself to remember what it took to get him there. He tells himself "You don't even want to come back this this place." He reminds himself that the promise he made himself is just as important as the one he made to his late wife. He thanks Dolvett for seeing something in him.

Bobby reminds himself that he hated himself for things that were out of his control. He hopes that he loves himself.

Chelsea tells herself that she is free of all of the things that bogged her down. She was so lost before.


Where are they now? - Marie

When she got to the Ranch, Marie weighed 249 lbs. Today she weighs 150 lbs.  Before it was easy for her to say "I can't". Now she and her husband are getting out there trying new things (rock climbing for one).

Her focus on the Ranch was to become a mom. After a visit to the doctor she learns that she is ovulating again.

She says that it was hard work to get there and she is blessed for the opportunity.


It's time for the Weigh In!

Rachel goes first since she already earned her spot.  She started at 151 lbs and now weighs 150 lbs for a total of 1 lb.
Chelsea started at 164 lbs and now weighs 157 lbs for a total of 7 lbs. 4.27%
   She is happy because she hasn't been that size since she was 15. Plus it's the day before her birthday. She's going to look better in her 30's than she did in her 20's.
Jennifer started at 185 lbs and now weighs 182 lbs for a total of 3 lbs. 1.62%
   She has lost 84 lbs and she will not be saddened by her numbers.
Bobby needs to lose more than 10 lbs to be safe. He started at 248 lbs and now weighs 231 for a total of 17 lbs. 6.85%
   The best was when it hit him. "Wait, am I a finalist?"  Jillian mentions that he is the epitome of second chances.
   Jennifer is eliminated.  She still feels great though. She made it to the top 5.
David is the final one up. He needs to lose more than 11 lbs to be safe. He started at 259 lbs and now weighs 243 for a total of 16 lbs. 6.18%
   This is a new lifestyle for himself. He couldn't go back if he had to. He came in with a sad story. Today that story has changed.

Chelsea and Jennifer are going home.

Chelsea is happy to have found that woman that she's always been looking forward too.

Jennifer is just thrilled to have gotten as far as she did. And she stayed strong in the end.

Next week (tomorrow) is the Finale!

Some thoughts to ponder:

If Rachel didn't win the triathlon, would she still be in the finale?

I was happy with the top 5. I would be happy with anyone who won, but I have a soft spot in my heart for Bobby. I love seeing how much he has grown this season. He's my dark horse.

If you made a video today for your future self, what would you say?

Sorry for any typos...I am super tired right now.

Have a Blessed Night.

Pledges for the Polar Plunge for Delaware Special Olympics can be made here (it's still open):

AND I have signed up for Run for Autism again :-)

Check out my Facebook Page for Confessions (there are before and work-in-progress pictures):

yeah, sorry, I messed up and the "l" is missing....I need an assistant :-)

Don't forget to follow me on Twitter: hugsnsmile

Instagram: Jennie5973 

Sunday, February 2, 2014

My Third Polar Plunge is in the Books!

Hello Beautiful People,

Wow...what an amazing fun weekend. Once again I am far behind on posts that I want to do (still haven't watched The Biggest Loser), but that's ok. I was having a very good weekend.

I had my lovely day in Philadelphia on Thursday with my friend from college. Then I went down to the beach for Polar Plunge weekend. I need rest days after my weekends.

I will detail it later this week, but I just need to talk about Polar Plunge weekend a little. Being a part of this weekend is one of the things I am most proud of (this weekend raised $725,000). This was my third Polar Plunge. I signed up for my first one because Ms. Bibble said she would do the 5K with me that weekend if I did the plunge with her. I couldn't say no. Little did I know just what I was getting myself into.

For the third year, God has blessed us with some amazing weather. It was absolutely gorgeous this weekend. I nearly froze walking around Philadelphia on Thursday and today I was driving home with my air conditioning on.  It just made this weekend even better.

I will admit right now that if it was not for such a wonderful cause I am not sure that I would have done this more than once.  Being a part of raising so much money for such a wonderful cause is totally worth it. I call it it the weekend of a million smiles. You just can't help it. It's infectious. It's in the air.

This particular Polar Plunge benefits Delaware Special Olympics. I always get a little emotional. Getting to talk to and interact with these amazing athletes makes me very upset about the years I wasted. God gave me a beautiful and healthy body and I abused it for so long. I am being thanked for supporting Special Olympics by Athletes who struggle daily with their bodies and I just tossed mine aside like it didn't matter. It's so frustrating. I wish every day that I could go back and do it over again. EVERY SINGLE DAY. I hate how bad I let things get. I hate that I didn't believe enough in myself or my body.

If you would have asked the Former Fat Girl to do a Polar Plunge she would have laughed in your face. She would have made a donation, but she never ever ever EVER would have stripped down to a bathing suit and run in the ocean with 3000 people. She would have thrown up just thinking about it.   Fast forward to today and it's one of my favorite weekends of the year. I'm a lifer now. No matter where I am living, I will forever be a part of this weekend.

The difference between the Former Fat girl and the Fit Girl today is that she didn't do things because she didn't think she could and now I don't do them because I simply don't want to. Case in point: the former fat girl would have said No to jumping out of a plane because she didn't think her body was capable of it. Today, I simply have no desire to do it. Thank you, but no thank you.

Before I log off for the night, I would just like to throw this out there: We are looking for more Plungers for next year (shoot me an email at I promise you a WONDERFUL weekend. You will not be sorry. If you just want to get your feet wet I won't tell.

Have a Blessed Night

Pledges for the Polar Plunge for Delaware Special Olympics can be made here (it's still open):

AND I have signed up for Run for Autism again :-)

****Please note****

If you feel like you are alone on your journey and you just need some encouragement I am here for you! Shoot me an email and I will do my best to check in on you or give you the words of support you need several times a week. The journey is so much easier if you have support.