Thursday, August 03, 2017

Taking Control of My Health!

A couple months ago, hubby and I started the Keto diet. Hubby read about this diet online and we both decided it might be the thing to jump start our weight loss. Both our weights have been going up and down but mostly up. So I was game to try this. I have been feeling really tired, blah and run down. It's nice that hubby is doing this also so it makes it easier and to have someone keep me accountable and me with him.

We are on a modified version of the diet. We decided not to cut out all carbohydrates completely but to eat low carbs, staying under 20%. We do eat vegetables and a little fruit everyday. We are using the My Fitness Pal app to track macronutirents, calories and exercise. One of our comprises on the Keto diet is we do allow for vegetables and some fruit everyday. We have to be stricter with other portions of the meal.

It's hard finding something to eat that doesn't involve carbs! You don't realize until you start reading every label and putting every portion into My Fitness Pal just how universal carbs and sugars are in our diet. We hardly ever eat out now because it is so hard to find any exciting items that are low carb and healthy, but we don't miss it much. We don't eat boxed foods or really any processed foods. So we do more cooking and less eating. No bread, no pasta, no rice, no bagels, no doughnuts, no chocolate cakes. More fish, more chicken, more fruits and more vegetables. We are also trying to limit red meat.

So the first month was rough as I detoxed from carbs and sugar. I was tired, had brain fog and was feeling really yucky. So after a month, I started feeling better and I am slowly getting my energy back. Now if I could only get a good night's sleep. I'm still not sleeping well. I have trouble falling asleep even though I'm tired and keep half waking up though out the night. Ugh.

My sugar and carbs cravings have disappeared, though sometimes I still miss them, especially desserts. It's not too bad just eating low carbs. The weight sure does come off fast when you limit carbs and sugar. I did get stuck at 21 lbs where I was going up and down for a week. Finally had a break through and now I'm 23.5 lbs down. My habits are better, too. I've been snacking less. I used to mindlessly snack on chips, etc. in between meals. I'm trying to eat healthier things when I want a snack.

I started walking with hubby. Hubby he's down 30 lbs and he's looking good. We both need to lose some more. We have picked up our exercise game so we started running again. We are using my Couch to 5K app. Since we lost some weight it's easier to run. Imagine that! We think we should be adding some strength training to tone our upper bodies. It feels good to be in control of my diet and exercise. As long as we are training for a 5K with this app we may as well sign up for a race. Now which race should we sign up for?

Monday, July 04, 2016

Toreador En Garde!

So one of my sisters in law found a Groupon for 40% off tickets to the opera Carmen. The other sisters thought that was a great deal and we should all have a night at the opera, so that was the plan. We decided to meet at a Lebanese restaurant nearby. Some of us were going by car and some were taking BART. That was us. We took the train to Civic Center and started walking.  When we got to Van Ness we saw the SILs just ahead of us so we ran to catch up and we all got to the Lebanese place before 5:00, the time for our reservations.

So we waited for it to open, then we waited some, then we waited some no sound, no lights, no movement of any kind.  A phone call went to their voicemail and we decided they must be closed for the holiday so went to the Japanese restaurant next door. It was good and they were open!

After dinner we all walked a few blocks to the Opera House.  My sister-in-law got Orchestra 3rd row center tickets.  Awesome seats!  We were right in front of the orchestra pit and eye level with the stage. The Opera was really good.  The costumes, lighting and sets were superb.  We didn’t know the story of Carmen beforehand. It was in French and we don’t speak French but they did have supertitles with the translation though suspiciously they would have only one line in English for many lines of French but I’m sure we got the gist.  Anyway the songs, beautifully sung, were very familiar. Carmen’s habanera you’d recognize right away.  It’s all about the fickleness of L’Amour.  This production of Carmen alternates two performers for this role. The one we saw was very good, very sexy as Carmen should be, though she is a bad, bad girl and thinks nothing of breaking hearts.  But after all love is fickle.  The other main characters Don Jose, her initial love interest and Escamillo, the Toreador, that she dumps him for were also played by fine singers.
The staging was interesting. it seemed to be a modern or modernish Spain.  The Gyspy’s drive around in old Mercedes Benz’s.  The soldiers’ uniforms looked 1930’s.  One of the Gyspy girls dressed like a 1960’s go go girl and the other one dressed was wearing a 1950’s style.  We weren’t sure about the naked guy except that this is San Francisco. 
 We stayed in our seats during intermission while they had open curtain Q & A.  They explained they were simulcasting to a crowd at AT&T Park and answering questions tweeted to #opencurtain.  They also explained that the giant black bull sign, that was part of the set, was originally a road side advertisement for an English sherry company. 

It was a lot of fun!  A little darker than we expected.  Carmen does not survive.  This was the second Opera I have seen since I had gone with SIL’s to see the “Barber of Seville”. It was the first for my hubby and son.  It was a short walk back to the train and a short ride back to the car.  We will do it again.

Wednesday, April 06, 2016

Saying Goodbye To My Niece-In-Law

It’s been a while since I’ve posted anything. 

We had some bad news on New Year’s Eve 2015.  My hubby’s niece passed away.  She was in her 30’s.  She had a heart attack at home while watching a movie with my sister-in-law.  The days since have been a blur.  The family and friends rallied around my sister-in-law.  We are not supposed to bury our children.  How can a person so young die suddenly?  One feels so helpless because all we can do is be there for her.  We can’t take away or ease her pain.
My sister-in-law had her cremated. On February 21st was my niece’s sea scattering and life celebration.  The family and a few close friends met up at the Neptune Societies boat docked at Pier 39.  The boat took us just outside of the Golden Gate Bridge to scatter her ashes.  I have never been to a sea scattering before.  It was a nice day on the water, sunny and a little breezy.  They had put her ashes in a lovely box.  The Neptune personnel performed a quick service then we all said goodbye before my sister-in-law and mother-in-law put her ashes into the water.  We had some flowers that everyone threw in with her.  It was a lovely ceremony.  After we came back in we went to one of the restaurants near the pier to have a memorial with the people who didn’t get to go on the boat with us.  My other sister-in-law arranged the ash scattering ceremony and the life celebration.  The restaurant is right near the Neptune Society boat.  My sister-in-law set up a slide show of photos  her with my niece-in-law  favorite music playing  in the background.  Her step-father gave a moving eulogy. Her friends and family, including my hubby, stepped up to share memories of her.  We provided some note cards for people to write sentiments on them and hung them up in the netting on the tribute table. There were quite a few people at the restaurant.  She was definitely loved. 
My niece-in-law was such a sweet, generous, loving, loved kids, there for you in times of trouble and family oriented.  She loved all things mermaid, loved to read and loved take photos. May she rest in peace. May you swim with the mermaids and dolphins.

by Walter de la Mare
Leagues, leagues over the sea I sail
Couched on a wallowing dolphin's tail.
The sky is on fire, the waves a-sheen,
I dabble my foot in the billows green.
In a sea-weed hat on the rocks I sit,
where tern and sea-mew glide and beat,
and where dark shadows the cormorants meet.
In caverns cool when the tide's a wash,
I sound my conch to the watery splash.
From out their grottos at evenings beam,
the mermaids swim with locks agleam.
To where I watch on the yellow sands,
and they pluck sweet music with sea-cold hands.
They bring me coral and amber clear.
But when the stars in heaven appear,
their music ceases, they glide away.
They swim for their grottos across the bay.
Then listen only to my shrill tune,
the surfy tide, and the wondering moon.

Wednesday, December 23, 2015

Top 5 Favorite Holiday Movies

Happy Holidays!  My husband and I started a family tradition of having Dungeness crab on Christmas Eve.  Dungeness crab and a nice loaf of crusty french bread yum! That is the perfect Christmas Eve dinner. After dinner we always watch a Holiday movie.

This year the Dungeness crab season is delayed due to large Algal blooms in the water.  It is probably due to the warmer ocean waters and the El Nino event. So now we need to think of something else for tomorrow night.  I think we will make homemade tempura shrimp and vegetables. At bed time we read "Twas The Night Before Christmas". My son is a teen now so he reads the story to us.

My top 5 favorite Holiday movies are:

1. Elf
2. Miracle on 34th Street -- 1947
3. The homecoming: A Christmas Story
4. A Christmas Carol -- 1951
5. The Santa Clause

What are your favorite Holiday Movies?