Category: happiness

Monday was the official start of week 12 post  surgery.  As of this morning, I am down 30 lbs since my surgery.  Including the 20 lbs I lost before surgery, I am now down 50 lbs. 

So crazy!!!  This has been an amazing  journey.  I have been absoultely amazed at my energy level and how I just feel like I can go, go, go!  Work has been easier because I feel like I have been able to move around so much easier.  I’m still walking 2 miles everyday during my lunchbreak.  It’s been a great way to get out of the office.  I used to get out of the office by going out to fast food restaurants.  I love to get out of the office and get some fresh air.  But since my surgery, I have been bringing my lunch everyday (plus I haven’t had too much fast food!).  I eat a little bit of food (literally!) and then I change my shoes and head out the door.  I love getting the fresh air, and I walk right by an off-leash dog park so I get to enjoy seeing the dogs running thru the park.  I’ve also been doing yoga once or twice a week which has been great.  It’s been a great way for me to relax and focus on myself.

I’ve also had to do more clothes shopping because my clothes are falling off.  I ordered some clothes online, which arrived this week.  They were all the wrong sizes.  Partly because the retailer messed up my order, but also because I’m still trying to figure out what size clothes I should be buying.  I went to Kohl’s over the weekend, and almost everything that I brought into the dressing room, I had to take back and get a smaller size.  A smaller size!!!!!  That was pretty crazy!  In the past, I’ve always had to go back and get a LARGER size!  I was also very excited to fit into size 12 jeans.  I can’t even think about the last time I wore a size 12.  They are slightly snug, but I think they will start to get looser and looser.

I’ve been getting many comments at work about my new figure.  Most of the people who work in my area know about my surgery.  I think because they have overheard me talking about it to a few people.  Many other people at work have commented on my shrinking size, but I haven’t told everyone about the surgery.  I guess I just feel like it’s my business and I don’t need to be the subject of office gossip.


Yesterday was the official start of week 9 post surgery, but I have been so busy working that I haven’t had a chance to update.  I’ve been feeling great!  My clothes are starting to get looser and looser.  In fact, I’ve started to dig thru my drawers to find clothes that I was hanging on to that have been a size or two too small.  They are now fitting well, and I’ll probably have to start clothes shopping soon.

I have had to buy a few things.  There was some things I hadn’t thought of before losing the weight.  The first thing was my underwear.  It has been falling off lately!  I knew that I would have to buy new shirts and pants after surgery but I didn’t really think of underwear.  I’ve also purchased a few new bras.  Not only am I down a size around, but a step down in cup size is fitting just fine.  Another place I hadn’t thought of losing weight was in my wrist.  My once-snug metal watch is now spinning around on my wrist.  It’s been a strange experience.

People at work are starting to notice the weight loss as well.  There are a few people there who know about my surgery and they have been commenting on my weight loss all along, but now people who don’t know are starting to notice.  As of my official weekly weigh-in yesterday, I am down 21 lbs since surgery.  I have more energy and I’m feeling really good.

One of the things that I wanted to do prior to surgery was to take all my measurements.  I wanted to see exactly where I am losing the inches.  So here are my measurement changes.

Neck: -1.0″
Bust: -4.0″
Waist: -4.0″
Hips: -7.5″
R biscep: -0.5″
L biscep: -1.5″
R forearm: 0″
L forearm: +0.5″
R wrist: -0.5″
L wrist: -0.75″ (hence the watch spinning!!!)
R thigh: -4.0″
L thigh: -3.5″
R calf: +0.5″
L calf: +0.5″
R ankle: 0.0″
L ankle: 0.0″
R width of foot: -0.25″
L width of foot: +0.50″

I think my leg muscles are getting a little bigger because I’ve been doing so much walking.  I do at least 1.5 miles on my lunch break at work everyday.  I was also going to the gym after work 3 nights a week, but with tax season picking up, I’ve been tired after work and also bringing work home most nights.  So I’m hoping to get back into the gym fairly soon.

In other news, Jeff and I booked our trip to Ireland.  We have been talking about taking this trip for several years and we are finally booked!!  Yay!!!  I’m so excited!  We will be going in the spring.  For me, traveling on airplanes has always been a little nerve wracking because I was always afraid that the seatbelt wouldn’t fit and I’d have to ask for an extender.  I was so embarrased about that.  Now that I’ve lost some weight (especially in my mid-section), I feel fairly confident that I should fit just fine.

Week 5 Update

Today is the start of week 5 post-op.  Overall, I feel really good.  I have more energy than I did before and my joints don’t hurt as much as they did before my surgery.  I’ve been going on my lunchtime walks at work, and trying to hit the gym at home as often as I can.  I did a 3 mile walk the other day and I felt great!  A little sore the next day, but I still felt great.

One thing that I noticed is that my stamina is increasing.  At work, I often get called into my manager’s office and we discuss various work related topics.  I stand next to her desk so I can see her computer monitor while she is drafting an email or whatever.  Prior to my surgery, I would only want to stand there for about 10 minutes before I pulled up a chair so I could sit down.  Last week, I had been in her office for a while when I suddenly realized that I had been standing there for an hour and didn’t even realize it!  My ankles and knees are already feeling the lighter load. 

I’m slowly introducing new foods back into my diet.  Tonight I had some salmon, which was great.  My daily diet has been consisting of usually 2 protein drinks (110 cal each), string cheese (50 cal), hard boiled egg (70 cal), maybe some cottage cheese (50 cal), maybe a little chicken or tuna.  My total caloric intake each day is probably about 500-600 calories.  My goal is to eat high protein foods so that my body doesn’t feel like I’m going into starvation mode, which would make my body want to hold on to everything.  I aim for 80-100 grams of protein a day.  The protein drinks help that goal a lot, since they are 30 g of protein each.  I also have to drink 64 oz of fluids during the day.  I have been getting closer but I still need to keep working on drinking throughout the day.  It’s very easy when I’m at home, but at work I get so busy that I forget to drink.  I’ve been starting to put my drink between me and my keyboard so that I’m forced to move it so that I can type, and I just move it to my lips!

Speaking of which, as of this morning, I am down a total of 17 lbs since my surgery.  It’s been really nice to see the number on the scale going down along with my BMI. 

So here are some pictures of me, taken this evening.  I don’t really see too much of a difference myself, but everyone tells me that they can see the changes in my face.  As my dad put it, I now have a jawline!  🙂

I have been nurturing my little cocoons for about a week now.  Every day  I come home from work and see if any progress has been made.  Every day there was no movement, no indication that my little cocoons were hard at work.  But they were!!!


They were not very pretty! 

But today when I was at work, Jeff sent me a text message that they were starting to hatch.  I was so excited!!!  But I felt like a working mother who was missing a big day in their child’s life.  I felt so bad that I wasn’t home to watch it happen.  By the time I got home, 8 butterflies had hatched.


(Thankfully the instructions said that there might be some red liquid that comes out.  There is red liquid all over one side of the habitat.  At first I thought there was a little Butterfly Fight Club action going on.  First rule of Fight Club……don’t talk about Fight Club!!!)


I think they look like monarchs, but the booklet only refers to them as Painted Ladies.  I’m not sure if that’s a generic term for butterflies or a type of butterfly. 

I also had to save one of my butterflies already.  The booklet says that you can put cut watermelon, bananas and oranges in the habitat and the butterflies will drink the juice.  Apparently the first butterfly to hatch landed on a banana slice.  The juice must have been really good because he looked a little drunk and fell off the banana.  The bad part was that his wing landed on the wet banana and he wasn’t strong enough yet to lift himself off of it. 

I told Jeff that I just had to save him!  He said I should just let him deal with it, but he was stuggling so much.  I reached in and let him grab onto my finger and lifted him off the banana.  He stayed on my hand for a minute before I gently set him back down.  I like to think that he was thanking me for helping him, but really he was probably just thinking “What the heck was THAT thing??  And why was I stuck to it?”  They’ve been thru a big change today, so now they’ll just rest tonight. 

I still have 4 cocoons yet to hatch so maybe I’ll have a few more yet.  My plan is to watch them for a few days and then release them outside.  I’m hoping that they will lay their eggs outside and we’ll see more butterflies around our house.


My latest project has me staring into little jars and looking at small creatures.  I had live animals shipped to my office and they arrived today.  What am I doing, you ask???


I’m raising butterflies!!!!  They look kinda gross now, but soon they will be beautiful butterflies.  All the brown stuff in the container is food.

A co-worker of mine told me about something she did for her sister’s wedding.  They ordered all these caterpillars and put them in individual boxes.  She had to keep them in a dark room and give them a little shake every day.  They took all the boxes to the wedding and handed them out to the guests.  At the right moment, the guests were to all open their boxes.  They were not told what was in the box.  Imagine their surprise when all 200 guests opened their boxes at the same time and had a ton of butterflies flying around.  How cool is that!!!

Seeing as I am obsessed with butterflies, I thought I’d give it a try.  I think my obsession is for small, winged creatures.  I love angels, hummingbirds, Tinkerbell, and butterflies.  There’s just something about these small creatures that I love to look at.  Jeff pointed out that it’s probably also the colors because I don’t feel the same affection for flies.  Good point!

So my little caterpillars are in the process of spinning their cocoons.  They will stay in their cocoons for about 10 days, and then they will hatch into butterflies.  The company also sent me a little habitat to observe the butterflies in.  The butterflies will live for about 2-4 weeks.  At any point during their butterfly stage, I can release them into the wild.  If I do it soon enough, they will lay eggs on nearby plants and I’ll have even more butterflies to enjoy.  I’m so excited!!  I’ll post more pictures once they start to make their change.



Last Sunday, I had the privilege of taking my two nieces and nephew to Medieval Times for the first time.  I have been many times, but none of them had been.  I couldn’t believe it!!!  Julianna had been saying that she wanted to go, so Jeff and I found a good deal and took the kids.

It was so much fun!!!

Here they are at the entrance:


The kids were pretty excited to get to wear crowns.


(Oh yeah, and I had to take them to the bar to booze them up before the show.  Don’t worry, Melissa, they are all virgin drinks!!!  We did get extra cherries for Jackson’s Shirley Temple.  I think that’s why he’s grinning!!!)

We purchased an upgrade to get better seats, and ended up getting the front row of the Red Knight’s section. 




(Medieval Times + ponytail = a crooked crown!)

I was trying to get the girls to cheer when our knight came by with flowers in hopes that they would get one.

Madisyn got one better!  Our knight got many flowers to throw to our section, which he threw to the rows behind us.  But he only got one “favor”.  The princess ties a ribbon to the end of his lance and he had to pick one lucky lady to receive it.  Madisyn was his pick!!  She was so excited!!



A photographer came over and took her picture, but because I’m too cheap (read: I had already spent WAY too much money), I tried to just take a picture of the photo.  She’s the Queen of Love and Beauty.


They also put our knight’s picture on the other side (who reminded me of Anthony’s friend, Dan Hammrick.  Funny!!)


When I showed her this picture with our knight, she promptly stuck out her tongue and made a face, which I took to mean that she thinks he was cute.  Hey, that’s what MY reaction would have been at that age!!! 

The kids had a blast!  I think we were the only ones who smuggled in a peanut butter and jelly sandwich for Jackson to eat.  During dinner, I looked over and saw a sight that was unique to our group:


With all the food and drink they give you there, Jackson was drinking a Capri Sun!  Go figure! 

But he loved it too!!  He kept asking when the fighting was going to start, and he was so into it.  Everytime they would do a battle, he would start telling us all what they were doing: “Look, he hit him with the sword!” “He threw his shield!”  It was really cute!!

Everyone had a great time, and since I’m the auntie who spoils, we were probably the only group leaving the castle who had to go thru a drive-thru for kids meals, since the younger two didn’t really eat anything.  It was ok though.  We had a blast!!

Our trip to San Diego was so much fun!!  We had a blast.  My vacation week started out with a few days around the town.  I got to go out to dinner with Mrs. Kitty and our friend Val.  I also got a chance to pick up my favorite nieces from school and take them out to spoil them.  It was Madisyn’s birthday, so I had an excuse!!  We got a few things at Claires, some DS games, and manicure/pedicures.  It was quite fun!  Madisyn was pretty excited to get flowers on her toes and fingers.

On Wednesday Jeff and I drove down to San Diego.  We started our trip in Seaport Village.  We took the Seal Tour, which was a boat on wheels that drove around the harbor, and then it drove right into the water and we took a tour of the harbor.  It was really cool.  We got to see wild sea lions and a navy ship that had just been christened. 



We also walked around the little village and had dinner overlooking the harbor.  Very romantic!

Thursday we went to the Wild Animal Kingdom Park.  I was so excited to see the Butterfly Jungle!!


The cool thing about this park is with over 3,000 animals, they have a baby born everyday.  We got to see quite a few of them.


Baby Chetah

We headed straight for the Butterfly Jungle.  We heard that this was a great week for us to be there since we missed all the kids on Spring Break.  The week before, the wait for the butterfly exhibit was an hour and a half.  We didn’t even have to wait 5 minutes!!  Plus, we missed the 100 degree weather!

I'm a beautiful butterfly!  And from way up here, you all look like little ants!!

I'm a beautiful butterfly! And from way up here, you all look like little ants!!






We also went by the elephant area.  I thought this was the baby elephant everyone was talking about……


….until I saw this little guy!!!


Sooooo cute!!!

Then we went on a 3 hour safari tour.  This was a totally awesome experience!!  We went into several different areas where the animals all roamed freely together.  So cool!!



This ostrich was coming over to check us out. "Hey, what are you looking at??"

The best part of the safari was getting the chance to feed the animals.  Giraffes are my new favorite animal!!!  They had 3 baby giraffes that were just brought out of the nursery the day before we got there.




"Hey, where's my leaves???"


"Oh here they are!!"




They have this long blackberry tongue that curls around your hand to take the leaf. 



Coming over to see if we have more food for them

Coming over to see if we have more food for them


Two of the new babies.  You can see the imbilical cord still on the one standing.

Two of the new babies. You can see the imbilical cord still on the one standing.

We also got to feed apples to the rhinos.



Twin baby lambs

Twin baby lambs

 We had to go back to the butterflies.  Since I didn’t get any of them to land on me the first time, I wanted to try again.




This one wanted to come see Jeff!

This one wanted to come see Jeff!


We also went to feed the lorakeets.  I made a few friends!!



We had a great time!!  And took a TON of pictures!!  We took too many pictures to post them all.  If you want to see more, click here.

So I have officially survived my first tax day at an accounting firm.  Phew!!  It was quite crazy!  Especially with Betty’s help.  She definitely added an element of drama and insanity.

Now I am counting the days until my vacation.  I’m getting so antsy now!!!  I have one more day of work, and then I’m free for a week.  YIPPEE!!!!  Jeff and I are taking a trip down to San Diego to go to the Wild Animal Kingdom Park.  They have a butterfly jungle exhibit that I’m dying to see.  We’re also going to take a 3 hour safari trip in the park and feed girraffes and rhinos.  I’m so excited about it!!!  And, my honey being as awesome as he is, found an On The Border restaurant down there that we’re going to see.  Unfortunately the one near us closed down January 1st, so I haven’t been able to satisfy my crack-cheese addiction.  He’s has Map Quested directions to the closest one in San Diego, so I will get to enjoy my chicken flautas and cheese.  Yum!!!  That’s just one of the things I’m really looking forward to!!!  🙂

I’ll have lots of pictures when we come back!!  Stay tuned!!

One of Jeff and my favorite video games is a game called Pain.  It’s this crazy game where you use the character and slingshot them around town, trying to hit and damage as many things as possible.  The more damage, the more points you get.  It’s really sick and twisted, yet oddly satisfying.  They have a new feature where you can edit the shot and change camera angles.  Jeff is now having too much fun editing his game clips.  It’s the film maker in him coming out!

For your viewing pleasure….

Click here and here.  Enjoy the pain!!

I hope you all had a great St Patrick’s Day!  My day was filled with all things green.

I started out the day like Dr Seuss….


Here I am enjoying my green eggs and ham!


The whole time, Jeff and I kept saying how disgusting it looked, but we ate it.  Jeff said if he closed his eyes, it tasted just like regular scrambled eggs.  I have been forbidden from posting the picture that I took of him because he had just gotten out of bed (party pooper!!!).

Then we had a mid-morning snack at work…..


(That’s my nice, organized desk!!!)  Hahahahahaha!!!!

Then after dinner, it was over to McDonalds for a classic.


Let me give you a little insider tip.  My co-worker brought in the Girl Scout cookies today that I had ordered.  Try taking a bite of a Thin Mint and taking a sip of the Shamrock Shake.  Oh lordy!!!  It’s mint overload……and FABULOUS!!!!