Tuesday, June 22, 2010

Camping in the City

We Gordon's are not known for our communion with nature.  Well, of all Gordons I think Millie and I are the most "okay" with being outdoors.  So long as I don't have to wear makeup.  There's nothing worse that being outdoors in the heat and humidity while your concealer is dripping down your face.  But if given to our lazy tendencies- we basically like AC and bugless TV watching.  But we realize that's not very good for the human spirit in high doses.  And so we try...

And by "trying" I mean I built a fire the other night.  In, like, 80 degree weather that feels like 90.  But the kids and I were all into it, so I thought I could score some Nature Points.  

Millie made a dumb bell out of a wood kabab thingy and marshmellows.   Fischer and his bff Finn  helped me build the tee pee fire.  Shepherd was asleep cause that's what he does best after 7pm.

God it was hot...

Then Amelia (in bikini just because) went into her fire trance.  Seriously, the girl loves staring at fires. 

And so here's what I'm learning:  Kids like it when you go "off schedule" sometimes.  Kids need you to have fun sometimes.  Bed times can be pushed back sometimes.  Because life is what you make it.  What you do day in day out is what you're doing with your life.  And that can be very eye opening.  At least for me.  If what I want to do with my life involves having a clean house- then I can spend my days cleaning.  If what I want to do with my life involves making memories with my family.  Then something else has got to give.  I can't have it all.  But, really, do I want it all?  No.  I'll take Ed and the kids over mopped floors. 

I lay awake at night sometimes and feel overwhelmed with it all.  The good and the bad.  I worry so much about what could happen.  And then I forget all I've not let happen in the name of routine and habit and laziness. This summer we will build fires in 90 degree weather.  We will build forts- even though it will make my sheets dirty.  We will stay up past our bedtime so we can eat popcorn or go swimming.  We will have icecream for dinner.  We will let the crumbs be on the floor and not give a damn.  We will go to bed with dishes in the sink.  We will be alive.  Cause you know the saying about how tomorrow is never promised.  Well, it's true.  Live in the moment today.  God it feels good.  I don't have to fit into a box and neither does my family.  What a fucking relief.  

So if you come over to my house one day and they're crushed cheerios on my floor, dishes in my sink, toys strewn all over the house and even a baby crying at my feet- don't pity me.  It's all good.  It's life.  Things have a way of being taken care of if you're patient enough to wait.  

On the "I'm not dieting" front?  I'm doing well!  Food is less and less on my mind.  I'm still learning my "full signal."  My body is full, but my tongue wants more.  But it's a practice.  And with any sort of practice- you have to work at it to perfect it.  The cool thing is that I purged all my diet cookbooks.  And I've been having fun cooking.  :)

Friday, June 18, 2010

Parting with the Scale

Here she is.  She calculated 80 lbs of weight loss in 2006.  And again in 2009.  She loves documenting.  But I'm done documenting and living life according to the pounds I weigh.  

This morning she was in my bathroom just staring at me all like: 
"Come on!  You know you want to.  Just hop on.  It could be good- you could be down!  Wouldn't that make you happy?" 

 And I'm like: "Yeah, but what if I'm not.  Then I'll be depressed all day."  

And Scales like: "Nah, you'll be fine.  If you're down then you'll just move on and do better." 

And I'm like: "You always say that but I'm never fine.  I get upset.  It wrecks my day.  It's not worth it."  

Scales all "Whatever, it's just a number."  

And I say: "Exactly."

And so I had a moment where I was done.  I decided I would throw her out my bathroom window.  Right here, right now.  Yeah.  After all- it feels better tossing something out the window than carefully placing it in the trash, right?  I mean, the drama of it all makes you feel all empowered inside, no?  I am woman, here me roar!

Said window (Note roof):

Well wait.  Hold on.  I have to remove the screen.  

And, oh, wait I need both hands so I can't take a pic.

Who cares!  

And I tossed!

Aaaaaand..... it landed on the roof.

And to make matters worse- my neighbor pulls out of his driveway and looks up RIGHT as it lands on the roof.   "Yes, yes.  I'm having an Oprah moment.  Move on."

I lean out and grab the scale.  I almost tossed it again but then thought I'd end up killing my outdoor cat in my Empowered Moment.  

So I settled for Goodwill pile at the top of the stairs....

So my roar was more like a meow.  But it still counts, right?

It was surprisingly hard.  I do really well with impulse decisions.  But impulsively "tossing" her was harder than I thought.  Kinda like putting wax on your lip and getting ready to rip the hair out.  There's that moment of hesitation where you can't do it.  But then you do.  And you get those little boogers and you pretend you're a hairless wonder for 1.5 weeks.  And so I tossed her.

Summer Love

Living in Atlanta during the summer is rough stuff.  It's hot.  It's humid.  It evokes turrets from anyone.  Including Mormons.  I'm not Mormon, but I figure it has to make them curse. 

And so we spend our mornings with cartoons.  This lasts from 7am to 8am.  

Then I shove them outdoors before it gets too hot. 

Small Fry likes to buff down and plant himself in the pool.  Then go up and down, up and down, up and down the stairs.  Nekkid.  And Ed likes to make unflattering faces at him.  But seriously, how can you not love the rolly pollies and a bare butt?  Shepherd's is cute too.

The big kids like to risk their lives running and jumping into the pool at high speeds.  Collision happens sometimes.  And for those moments I bring out the Snow Cone machine with high frutose corn syrup.  High frutose corn syrup makes kid's pain receptors diminish.

OH and the play set!  THE playset.  The very playset I ordered weeks ago for the kids that they've been asking for every single minute since.  It was delivered.  And they are in love. That bitch was expensive, but worth every single penny!

And my kids do nothing without water.  So Millie grabbed the watering can and poured it over Fischer while he swung. 

And then straight up dropped it on his head for fun. 

Then that sparked an ideas and they tilted the can onto the slide and slid down with it all wet.  They didn't account for the speed and are literally flung off the slide at the bottom.  Millie knocked the breath out of her and looked like she was heaving crying.  Nope- heaving laughter.  They love danger. 

Shepherd has it backwards.  Wants to go up the slide and down the stairs. 

And in unrelated news:  I got a pedicure!


Now go outside and find some summer love!

Wednesday, June 16, 2010

Toasty Mochas

My mom bought me this espresso maker when she came in town this weekend.  I had mixed feelings.  I love the idea of making my own mochas for shear, practical reasons like saving money and not going somewhere to get it.  But I also like the ritual of going somewhere.  And I like the taste of mochas that other people make.  You know how cooking yourself something never tastes as good as someone else cooking for you?  And getting a mocha breaks up my morning.  And if you're a mom of three small kids- you get that.    

Anyway- here she is: 

The coffee cozy is made by my friend Booke at SoSheSews.esty.com.  She makes the coolest stuff from recycled materials.  She didn't ask me to plug her- but her stuff seriously rocks.  So there.  

And so all was good.  I was enjoying my new found barista abilities until the little bitch toasted to a crisp burned the living hell out of my wrist.  How was I supposed to know you had to "release the pressure before removing lid?"  Oh yeah, cause it's written ON the lid.  I think I was dropped as a baby.  

I burned my wrist and the top of my left hand.  Hurt like a bitch!  I had to keep ice on it all day long to avoid the stinging.  I concocted an Ice Pack Stayer Onner with ice packs you put in kids lunches and medical tape.  I looked like a retarded Rower Ranger.  Thankfully my friend hooked me up with some pain killers.  She gave me two and I had hoped to only need one and save the other one for a "rainy day" as my mother would say.  No such luck.  Needed both.  

Here it is today.  Much better!

And even with my injuries, I've made a couple mochas since with success.  And I'm happy to say they are good and worthy of my love.  Sorry Starbucks- I can no longer pay your utility bills every month.  

Tuesday, June 15, 2010

I'm going to get all Oprah on your ass...

So I went and read me a book called Women, Food, and God by Geneen Roth.  It "read my mail."  Totally.  It has completely changed the way I see myself and food.  I really can't remember when I clung to food.  It seems like forever.  I know it's always been an escape, a numbing drug, a way to feed myself love.  It's like a my "my own personal brand of heroin" as Edward would say to Bella.  I am Edward.  Bella is food.  Where in the hell am I going with this?

The first time I felt in control of my heroin was after I had Amelia.  When I was perfect to a T with diet and lost 80 lbs.  But I remember going past my Flex points one day after 7 months of complete perfection.  I was really upset.  Oddly upset.  Crying.  I called a friend and "confessed" it.  I wanted her to tell me I was still okay.  That I wouldn't get fat again.  And that moment was the beginning of my obsession with "losing weight."  If I stayed on plan- it was a good day.  If I went over my points- it was a bad day.  It was my religion.  I had no real sense of contentment or "goodness" unless I was in control of my eating.  I was not enough until I reached "goal."  I was not enough.

And so I read this...

"Can you remember a time, perhaps when you were very young, when life as it was- just the fact that it was early morning or any old day in summer- was enough?  When you were enough- not because of what you looked like or what you did, but just because every thing was the way it was.  Nothing was wrong.  When you were sad, you cried and then it was over.  You were back to a fundamental feeling of positivity, of goodness just because you were alive.  What if you could live that way now?  And what if your relationship to food was the doorway?"

What?   No, but see I'm fine.  I just have to lose 10 lbs.  It's not a big deal.

"No matter what we weigh, those of us who are compulsive eaters have anorexia of the soul."

Oh shit.  Now I gotta be all crazy-inner-healing-praying-girl.  I mean, I pray.  But I don't "deal."  Dealing with pain, emotional pain, makes me want to bolt.  I'd rather eat grass.  Do 100 jump squats.  Hold a plank for 20 mins.  Diet.

"Dieting was like praying.  It's a plaintive cry to whoever was listening: I know I am fat.  I know I am ugly.  I know I am undisciplined, but see how hard I try.  See how violently I restrict myself, deprive myself, punish myself.  Surely there must be a reward for those who know how horrible they are.....Making the decision to stop dieting was like committing heresy, like breaking a vow that was never supposed to be broken.  It was like saying, 'You were wrong, God.  You were wrong, Mom.  I am worth something.'"

And so the realization hits me hard:  I fill my life with goals to distract myself from being present.  Because if I'm working toward a "goal,"  I can be swept up in that task.  And not deal.

Geneen Roth tells the women at her retreats: 

"I tell them that ending the obsession with food is all about the capacity to stay in the present moment.  To not leave themselves.  I tell them that they don't have to make a choice between losing weight and doing this."

Ding! Ding! Ding!  My first thoughts on reading this book was that this lady was going to tell me to embrace my thighs, stop caring about weight loss and like me.  And that kind of thinking makes me feel like I can't breathe.  My obsession with weight loss (whether its fruitful or not) fills me.  It gives me meaning.  I know.  Sounds ridiculous.  But hey- I was successful!  I did it 4 years ago!  And hell, I'm only 7 lbs from where I was 4 years ago.  But I just..can't...get...there.  It's like it's just sitting out of reach and I can't do it.  And so what do I do?  Well, another project of course.  Yeah.  If I get all hard core and shoot to be a figure competitor then I'll have to lose the weight.  I'll have no choice.  And so I get obsessed with figure competing.

"Obsession gives you something to do besides having your heart shattered by heart-shattering events....  It creates a parallel world, a hologram of emotions, passions, breathtaking reversals.  It gives you the illusion of feeling everything without having to be vulnerable to anything.  In the drama of obsession, you are the star, the costar, the director, the producer....Obsession is a way of organizing our lives so that we never have to deal with the hard part-the part that happens between two years old and dying.  We compulsive eaters wouldn't have an obsession with food if we believed that life was tolerable without it." 

You know where this is going.  But I cannot have a realization like this and still be consumed with my "project."  And so I'm doing it.  I'm quitting.  Fuck figure competitors!  Nah, just kidding.  Fuck projects.  Fuck anorexia of the soul.  Life is too short.  In some ways I feel like a weight has been lifted off my shoulders.  In other ways I feel terrified of not losing those last pounds.  Losing ground.  Being a quitter.  A flake.  And I fear that some of you are thinking that I'm just being lazy and using this book to give me a ticket out of this figure thing.  I fear a lot.  I can be a very paranoid girl.

So what's my theme?  My goal?  What am I doing?  You know, bloggers have to have goals.  You have to be onto something.  Doing something.  And then post pics of it.

I am doing nothing.

Absolutely nothing.  I mean, I'm going to be here.  I'm going to ramble.  I still love fitness.  I still love mochas.  But I can't, with any presence of mind, be a figure competitor right now.  The perfection of diet and hard workouts are counterproductive to being "enough," because you're only striving towards changing yourself.

I want to deal with my need for distraction.  Hell, I have no idea what "dealing" looks like.  I've been through years of therapy that never touched this food stuff.  But I feel strongly in my gut that I read this book at the time I needed to.  And I want to be present.  For myself.  My husband.  My kids.  I just want to enjoy life because I can and I deserve to.  I want to be enough.

Thursday, June 10, 2010

Hollaback Garden

I get giddy thinking about my garden.  GIDDY.  I love it.  I obsess over it.  Every morning I peek out the window hoping to see a flash of any red which would tell me a tomato is ripe and ready.  My tomato plants are so tall and big and huge that I have to tie it up to itself and the tomato cage just to keep it contained.  I pick every dead leaf off.   I get oddly angry when I see a bug on a leaf trying to get all up in my garden shit.  I'm like "No you di-ent" And it's like "Oh yes I did!" And then Gwen Stefani's Halloback Girl starts playing out of nowhere.

Here's my broccoli and cucumber.  If I can keep Ameila from eating every single cucumber off the vine this year, I'll be happy.  She loves "pickles."  

Red bell pepper.  Obviously not ready yet, but can't wait!

And I got all domestic and stuff this week and decided to branch out from my standard italian chicken/sweet potato/green veggie staple meal.   I have a major crush on my crock pot.  It just makes my chicken tender.  I was going to say "That's what she said," but it didn't make sense.  Anyway, I made some coconut curry chicken.  And it actually worked! I suck at chicken.  The only way it ever turns out tender and juicy for me is with the crockpot.  So I had the the ingredients and threw it in for about 3.5 hrs on high.  Despite looking like a sludgy, white mess at first, it came out great!

Coconut Curry Chicken
6 chicken breasts
2 -6z cans coconut milk
2 tbsp of red curry past
A lil tumeric
A lil garam masala
A lil cumin

It came out so great that I forgot to take a picture of it.  Oops!  I served it with brown rice and cilantro and lemon.  Y to the UM.  

And then there's this:

Senora Sparkly Unicorn Princess and Fatty McButter Pants

Tuesday, June 08, 2010

Hey, I'm here

I've been one crazy-busy-mommy-wife-doula lately.  Births and babies, babies and births.  Different kinds of births and babies of all ages.  But one thing is for sure- with summer I'm outdoors all the time.  It just makes me feel good.  Whether the kids and I are playing,  I'm at bootcamp, weeding a garden, at the YMCA pool, I'm in the sun.  It just feeds me to be outdoors.  

Notice how I plant my mocha in the nature shot?  My basil are getting ginormous.  And my hydrangeas are so big this year.  We picked a few to give to Millie's teacher on the last day of school.

Here's my girl.  Never stays gone from me too long.  We live on the deck in the mornings.

I planted some cherry tomatoes in this old barrel and by God is growing!

I can haz a mocha...

And a really bad shot of me in my bathroom.  My legs are coming along.  I can tell the shape is changing.  I'm proud of my body!



I've totally fallen of the food wagon.   Not horribly, but just sort of farting around with my diet.  I hate that expression, but it fits.  Especially if I eat beans.  

Bad joke.

My husband knows me well.  He's challenged me to lose 7-10 lbs before our beach trip in July.  He knows I'm competitive.  So he's doing it with me.  He's counting his calories with an app an everything.  He's already lost 40 lbs this past year.  From, you know, giving up beer and stuff.  I hate men.  But I love him. And it all boils down to the bikini.  I bought a nice one.  Here it is.  This is my way of sneaking in a progress pic in a bikini.  

I feel pretty darn good in it!

Okay, I'm tired.  It's totally, like, 9pm and I'm barely holding my eyes open an making bad jokes.  I'm off the hook.  Crazy.  I'll see you floggers later.  Peace. 

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