Everything's Bouquet

Monday, August 29, 2011

Tea Time

TEAVANA is my new favorite store.  I love the colors on their wall of tins.  I could spend all day wafting every single tin.  I really like the taste and results (so far) of the tea also.  I do not like the hefty price tag, but what a girl won't do to get skinny be healthy.
What I am currently drinking:
Monkey Picked Oolong.  I really like the taste of this.  It is a mild tea.  It is supposed to be good for weight loss, digestion, skin, and teeth.  I started drinking it in July, and noticed a difference with the first cup.  It made me feel slightly warm, and very hungry within minutes of consuming it.  It also made me even more regular, if you know what I mean.  I really do think it keeps my metabolism running a little faster.  That said, it does not make me feel jittery or strange.  It also lowered my blood sugar levels immediately.  I really think part of the reason I maintained my weight in July was this tea.
Golden Monkey Black Tea and Yaun Dynasty Golden Tips Black Tea.  This is what they suggested for lowering my cholesterol.  It is a harsher tea...almost a little bitter.  I am mixing it with my oolong, but when it runs out I don't think I will get more.

I bought the Teavana Perfect Tea Maker.  It diffuses the tea and empties right into my cup.  I usually drink three 16 ounce mugs a day.  Straight up with nothing added.  I also reuse the same tea five times to stretch it as long as possible, and to help lesson the caffeine.

My reboot juicing is going well.  Today is day 15.  I am really looking forward to introducing solid veggies and fruits again on Thursday.  REALLY.  I do not know if I could EVER do this for 60 days.  I am consistently longing for an avocado, so I am guessing maybe this means my body would like a little healthy fat.  I will try to post a recap after my juice feast/reboot is over.  

Friday, August 26, 2011


I was excited to take pictures, but I really don't like them.  Will I ever like pictures of myself again?  I do like having 50 pounds gone however, and I feel really motivated to knock out the rest.  Below are a few pictures from yesterday, and one comparison picture from February.

I added the close up above so I could show how my skin looks while juicing.  Below are two comparisons of me on February 11, 2011 when I had lost 12.5 pounds and yesterday at minus 50 pounds.

I had actually been on the Clean program for 10 days when that awful picture was taken.  I tried to locate one from January, but will have to keep digging.  As puffy as I am in that picture, I know it was even worse in January.  Unfortunately, I did a really good job of NOT standing in front of cameras.  Sadly, I took an entire weeks field trip to Chicago with my youngest daughter and her seventh grade class in January, and while there are lots of pictures,  I cannot find one of me with my daughter.  NOT ANYMORE.  I am so happy to be able to be present with my children and family instead of hiding from history.

Below is my fresh pineapple, mango, peach, apple, and spinach juice.  It was too good; a really refreshing and yummy breakfast today.

These pictures make me smile.  My beautiful senior and her creative shirt heading off to school today.

Below is an interview with Joe Cross who stars in the movie, Fat, Sick, and Nearly Dead, and who founded the Join the Reboot website.

Thursday, August 25, 2011


Minus 50 pounds total on the scale this morning.  Smiling and jigging a jog around here!  I was thinking yesterday that these last 30 pounds are the fun pounds.  Those first 30 pounds were just NOT fun.  I had gone up and down in that range a lot these last five years, so you couldn't really tell I looked any different.  I know, it is not all about looks, but when I was working so hard looks would have been a great reward.  It really wasn't until around minus 40ish pounds that any kind soul noticed I'd done something different.  Doing the right thing, and making better choices was really a great daily reward in itself during that time, but it was not as exciting as getting close enough to see the very distant finish line.

These next 30 pounds are motivating and exciting because I just feel so much better, look so much better, and get to begin to enjoy the rewards of the weight loss like smaller and cuter clothes.  For the first time last week another mom commented that I certainly did not need to lose 30 more pounds.  Ahhh.  It made me smile.  With my first five babies I never needed to re-lose more than 25 pounds, so when I would complain about losing weight people would always say that polite thing of "you DO NOT need to lose 25 pounds.  Where?"  With 80 pounds to lose, and even when I got down to 60 or 70 pounds to lose, people would give me a pitiful look or say something like,"You can do it."  I know, I was the only one in denial about HOW BIG I really was, but somehow it still shocked me when they never argued even a tiny bit that I should be losing X amount of weight.  It was nice to hear someone sound genuinely surprised that I still have 30 more pounds to go because it affirmed my loss so far.  Just as I was in denial about how large I had gotten, I seem to be weirdly unsure about if what the scale says matches what I look like now.  So it was nice to hear that maybe it does.

I hope to in list my in house photographer Peter and take a few pictures to post of me at minus 50 pounds.

I am still juicing and starting day 11 today.  Look at the frothy thick top on that juice!  Again it is surprisingly thick.  I really feel very good.  The amazing thing about 10 days of only veggies and fruit is it really changes my cravings.  The Hershey's chocolate bar my son begged for in the store last night honestly did not phase me.   Fresh almonds however make me drool, and I am dreaming of an avocado on top of a crunchy veggie salad.
 He asked me to take this picture with him drinking from his cup.  I have so much help around here.

I'm off to juice with my juicing entourage.  I am thinking about getting a Vita Mix.  Any of you have one have any advice?  My boys who spent 3 hours mesmerized by the Costco Blend Tec man last weekend, and consequently could now go into business themselves, are insisting it is better.  I, having previously been enamored by the Costco Vita Mix man, am not convinced.  Either way, those cool headset microphones and amazingly thick smoothies that don't fall out of the upside down cup are convincing....I won't even get started on the sorbet or HOT soup.  It's a good thing we don't get out much!  I'm boogieing off to the kitchen; let the juicing begin.

Monday, August 22, 2011

7 Days of Juicing DONE!!!

Hello Monday; I'm so glad to see you.  This Monday means I have one week, or seven days, or one hundred sixty-eight hours, or ten thousand eighty minutes of juicing done and behind me.  Juicing, only juicing, with no mid day clean meal like on the Clean Program is very hard.  I did have one blended fruit/veggie smoothie.  I did wait until day five to actually read the plan carefully and see that it suggests eating, blending, and juicing only veggies and fruit for five days, followed by five days of juicing, and finished with five days of eating, blending, and juicing.  That would be a little easier than jumping straight into only juicing (minus that one smoothie).

Drum roll please.....10 pounds in seven days.  Not bad.  I know some of you are saying it's not healthy to only juice and lose that quickly, but it works for me.  I think I'm sort of a bite the bullet and see results quickly over slower and longer.  I realize when I lose quickly it takes diligence to build back my shocked and slowed metabolism, and the total weeks it takes to lose quickly and settle into that weight loss permanently probably equal losing at a normal two pound a week rate.  However, two or less pounds a week just drives me crazy, and it is just easier for me to dive in.

A recap of my week: Days 1-3 were hard but slightly fun pulling out the juicer and experimenting.  Days 4-5 were the hardest.  I don't know if it was the birthday meal or just the days, but I almost gave in at dinner on each day. Days 6-7 were the best days even though we were having some very hard issues with one of our children.  It seemed like I finally hit a zone on those two days.

Sunday I got a little juicing cocky and went off the recipe map.  It was a very bad idea.  I made a gigantic concoction of horrible smelling and tasting juice.  Oh it killed me to pour it out, but after gagging down one big old glass I just couldn't handle another.  I hate wasting things, so I learned my lesson, and I'm sticking closer to juicing what tastes good today.

Just a few pros and cons from my first week of juicing:


SKIN.  My skin is amazing.  A mother at the football game Friday night said I looked 15 years younger.
             At my age one year younger would be worth juicing!

BONDING:  I didn't predict this one, but my youngest two boys are having a blast helping me throw things
                     down the juicer hatch.

HEALTH:  I know if my skin looks better my insides must too.  Just veggies and fruit is making me glow.

HABITS:  I am breaking the bad habits of sugar and processed food that was taking over by the end of my
                 summer indulging break.  Finally I am craving chewing nuts, salads, and fish instead of junk.

RESULTS:  Let me be honest, if I didn't see quick results on the scale each morning, my will power for this
                    would be out the window.  It's real pounds, not just water.  My clothes are almost falling off,
                    and I am fitting into jeans I have not worn in seven years.


TIRED:   I am very tired.  I am doing very light to none on exercise.

HARD:  I don't know if that is really a con, since hard is probably good for me.  Maybe hard on my family is
              a con?  They have to put up with me complaining about the difficulty.

TIME:   It requires a lot of time to shop, chop, drop, and mop.  Ha.  Translated, shopping, prepping, juicing,
             and then cleaning every teeny tiny part of that juicer takes a lot of effort and time.  I still have six
            people staring at me with that "whats for dinner" look after I clean up the juicer.

PRICEY:  It takes a lot of veggies and fruit for a little tiny bit of juice.  That price tag goes up higher when
                I try to buy organic produce.  Right now is not a good time to raise our grocery bill;  thank you
                sweet hubby supporter for not complaining about my organic produce.

INCONVENIENT:  This is an understatement.  Three times of more this week I drank lemon water because
                 it just did not work to juice or take my juice with me.

METABOLISM:  I know my metabolism will slow during this juicing.  That will be okay if I transition by
                       eating clean and exercising consistently.

Day 8 begins today.  I am at minus 47.5 pounds, so I am just 2.5 pounds away from the minus 50 mark.  I am looking forward to that after staying in the same range June and July.  I'm off to try peaches and veggies in the juicer!!

Thursday, August 18, 2011

Day 4 Rebooting Barely

I barely made it tonight.  It was a close call sort of.  Let me back up to this morning.  I sent my girls off to school with home made healthy hot egg mac muffin sandwiches and lunches packed with pretty napkins.  My favorite thing about packing school lunches is surprising the eaters with seasonal fun napkins.

Anyway, the morning was going well, and after writing a quick blog my juicer helpers and I juiced away.  I ended up not using the melon in the picture below.

The fruitier juice is my favorite...of course.  All of the juices are frothy and almost thick when they are fresh.

Lunch was a more concentrated veggie juice.  I mixed it with just a little of the remaining beet juice and it colored the entire glass red.

After an afternoon volcano experiment and errand running I came home tired, starving, and ready to dive into making my firstborn child's 22nd birthday dinner.
I felt a little whiny and that should have been my first warning sign to rest a second, hydrate, and drink a juice.  I was so happy to work in the kitchen I ignored the warning and pressed on.  By the time the birthday dinner spread was done and smelling wonderful I was beyond hungry.

Everyone was eating and it all smelled so good.  I began waffling internally and externally about how I could eat tonight and get back to juicing in the morning.  My family is very supportive, and really cheers me on whether I want to eat or not.  With absolutely no pressure from them, the decision making was all mine.   It was really hard.  I talked myself into and out of eating the regular spread of food a million times.  I made it all the way through dinner, and was about to give in at the END of dinner....plate in hand...when my sweet hubby said," If you want to go back to the computer, I'll clean up dinner."  MUSIC TO MY EARS.  He had very patiently listened to me struggle, and offered to help me escape the clean up temptation.  My way of escape handed to me in the package of NO clean up was a sure sign.  I got out of there fast...in case the offer disappeared.

It was really hard tonight, but right now I'm so glad I didn't give in.  I had some red flags that made me think twice.
Red Flags:
Emotional:  I just wanted what I wanted even if it wrecked my long term plan.
Lying to myself:  I told myself I could eat tonight and get back to my plan in the morning.
Unhealthy:  What I was desiring was not a healthy fresh salad, but lots of very fattening and sugary foods. (Special birthday requested food like taco dip, chips, steak, tator tots, green bean casserole, jello salad desserts etc.)

My rational self did a good job reasoning with my unreasonable self, and my sensitive hubby saved the day when I almost gave in.  There was a very big part of me that knew if I gave in tonight I wasn't touching that juicer tomorrow.  I wasn't really wanting to just eat a few healthy things with my family.  When I was waffling about what to do, I really wanted to eat the poorest choices and lots of them.  That was another sign that I knew meant it wasn't time to stop my plan.

Tonight made me wonder if I can make it another 12 days juicing.  I may not be able to. I may reach a point where it might not be the healthier choice to continue.  I want to listen to my body and do the healthy thing over the perfection perfect plan thing even if it kills me option.  If I stop however, I want it to be with a plan including healthy, clean foods.  That wasn't my motive tonight, so it wasn't time to quit the plan.

So I survived rebooting day four barely, and I am hoping day five is easier.

All that said I feel very pitiful about ever complaining when I read about the struggles Lucy and her family are going through.  She is a beautiful six year old girl struggling with cancer, and her mom is so burdened with the heartbreaking journey of Lucy and missing her two other children and family at home.  I leave you their blog link in case you would like to join me in praying for them.  http://erikandkatekrull.blogspot.com/

Reboot Day 3

Yesterday (Wednesday) was day 3.  It was crazy busy, but went really well.  I started the morning off juicing a fruitier combo of grapefruit, mango, lime, blueberry, and spinach.  It was delicious.

After breakfast I loaded up the counter with mainly veggies and four apples, and with the help of my juicing buddies juiced the night morning away.  Well not really the whole morning, because the textbooks were waiting.
My youngest juicer helper cannot wait to wake up each morning to see what he is going to help push down the juicer hatch.  He is fascinated with the process (not so much the product).  He's a juice developer in the making.
All those veggies and fruit made this juice below.  No beets this time!

My husband and I spent the evening watching our oldest graduate from EMT school and enjoyed taking him to dinner.  He picked Red Robin, and although I am a fan of their onion ring tower and fries and burgers and salads and.......well, I enjoyed three big refills of lemon water and the nice company.  I let my hubby sacrifice and eat with my son.  He does things like that for me. :)

I'm off to juice for day 4.  It's my oldest child's birthday today....the big 22.  He's got a dinner menu request that is five miles long, so I will be baking/mixing/cooking up a storm.

Oh..one more thought...I got home last night at the end of day three and looked in the mirror and wondered if my face was losing weight.  I then realized it is just my skin.  It already looks smoother and tighter by day three.  When I see my biggest organ looking 100 percent better in just three days, I always wonder what my inside organs are doing after three days.  This is a fun experiment to do just to see what your skin does in such a short time!

Tuesday, August 16, 2011

Reboot Day 2

My big jug of juice for today:  spinach, carrots, 4 big beets, lemon, ginger, broccoli, and apples.  My hubby and I started out with a morning smoothie of organic berries, avocado, spinach, agave, cinnamon, and coconut milk.  The rest of today has been lemon water and this juice.

The beets give it a gorgeous color.  Well that is a matter of opinion, because the people younger than me eating out of my refrigerator think it looks SCARY.  The same people that will eat anything that color if it comes in a bear shape out of a candy package.  Choosing the veggie juicing diet over the Twinkies diet cuts way down on fighting over food in the kitchen.

It feels really good to have 2 successful days behind me.  I read this article written by Joe Cross (the man from the movie I blogged about), and he said he lost 100 pounds in 130 days.  He juiced the first 60 days and ate veggies, fruit, legumes, and nuts the next 70 days.  He not only lost weight but the healthy eating cured a skin disease he had.  It is an amazing story.  I hope each time I spend several weeks eating fruits and veggies it strengthens my healthy eating desires and habits, so that maybe someday I will eat well more than I eat poorly.

Monday, August 15, 2011


It's time for me to reboot.  At least that is what they call it at Reboot Your Life.  I finally watched the movie Fat, Sick, and Nearly Dead that I blogged about here in March.  I've been trying to talk myself into doing something drastic another Clean Program cleanse since June, and decided I needed some inspiration.  It was just what I needed complete with video interviews of people in my city!

I did alright at maintaining my 42 pound weight loss all summer.  BUT WAIT, I am not supposed to be maintaining at all.  Even though I told myself I was enjoying a small break, learning how to navigate maintaining in case I ever get to maintenance land and want a head start, and building up my metabolism, all of that seemed reasonable for a short amount of time, until that time extended through the entire summer.  Shockingly, August is almost half over.  Suddenly I am beginning to feel that familiar hopelessness of the days, weeks, and months flying by while my scale stays the same...or goes up.  Somehow I started playing that game of eat what I want today and Monday or Tuesday or Wednesday I'm on board with the plan to knock off the remaining pounds.

I confess my choice in food even progressively declined, to the drastic point of polishing off birthday party cake, chips, goodies, and Peanut M & Ms.  The latter of that list which became a handful here and a handful there indulgence this last week.  I don't look good, and I don't feel good.  Worse than that my spirit feels defeated.

I am sad, worried, and discouraged in some other areas of my life.  There is a lot happening  that is hard, tough, and not like I want it to be.  There is always something in life that is hard or disappointing.  Medicating my emotions with food will not better the situation.  The ONE thing I can control is what I put in my mouth.  THANK GOODNESS.  Really I am thankful for that, and I should be.  I don't have any physical issues right now that dictate what I put into my mouth, or don't let me eat certain foods.  In a world where there is so much I would like to change today and cannot, I need to embrace what I can change.

Remedy?  I need to put down the sugar and step away from the party leftovers.  I need to stop starting/failing and start doing/following through.  The movie last night was just the inspiration I needed to give me a push in the right direction.  So I decided for my hubby and me (lucky for him, ha) to jump head first into juicing today.

Out came the juicer and every vegetable and fruit in the house.  I was hoping to fill up my 128 ounce jug for the day....giving us each 64 ounces of fresh juice for day 1.  Wow.  It takes a LOT of veggies and fruit to fill up that jug.  What veggies I had on hand, and I had a lot on hand, only made  80 ounces of yummy juice.
GOLD, VEGGIE GOLD. 80 ounces of apples, spinach, carrots, broccoli, lemon, melon, ginger, and 1 tomato.  It is really filling and really good. It also gets things moving if you know what I mean.

Good and frothy.  I hope to reboot through juicing and raw food smoothies the days remaining in August 2011.  That's 16 counting today.  I need to for my physical and mental health. This is something I considered doing in June, and I regret that I didn't.  I do not want to get to November wishing I had done this in August.

UPDATE:  I started this blog earlier today, and it's almost bedtime and I accomplished Day 1 of juicing raw foods only!!  It feels really good to have a successful day after many failures this summer.  I hope and pray I make it through the next 15!  I plan to blog my progress!

Saturday, August 6, 2011

It's My Birthday and I'll Cry If I Want To

Only I really don't want to.  It's been a fantastically fast birthday week.  August reigns as our heaviest family birthday month with birthdays on the 2nd, 4th, 5th, 6th, and 18th.  I've checked the box on the first four...one more to go this month.
We started our busy week out last Friday celebrating my youngest's birthday a week early.  He turned the big 7.
 There he is with his dramatic pause making his wish.
The next morning we all woke up and drug a trailer across the state to move my oldest girlie back to school.  I'm so proud of her, she's enjoying RA training this week.
 Oh to long car trips with eight people in the vehicle.  Behold my sleeping beauties.
 Behold my singing beauties.
 Oh I LOVE my Sea Bands.  Best purchase ever.  Instant cure for motion sickness.  I can read in the car now.  Yay!  Thank you Laura for educating me on these!  Seriously, my 11 year old wore them to the amusement park and DID NOT throw up for the first time after riding rides.

 A little toasty weather for moving day!
After we spent two nights moving our daughter, we dropped off our rental trailer, hitched up our hitch haul, backed our hitch haul into another vehicle, bought another hitch haul, and after assembling it traveled on to Chattanooga.  Here we left our two youngest for the week to torture their Aunt hang out with their cousins.
After a tour of UTC for daughters 2 and 3, and a stop for dinner at the Cheescake Factory in Nashville (it is birthday week you know), the rest of us arrived home very early Tuesday morning.  Tuesday August 2, the day this pretty daughter turned 16.  We couldn't let that pass us by (even though her party was ahead on Friday), and frankly my husband and I were feeling a little too FREE with those crazy youngest ones gone, so we headed to dinner and double feature movies.  Seriously, I don't think I've stayed that late at the movies since my pre-children days.

Again, feeling the freedom and possibly suffering from a little heat stroke, my hubby and I headed out ALONE Wednesday evening to Bonefish grill and a movie.  We didn't do any type of vacation this year, and I think maybe we just enjoyed a little staycation.  By Thursday night I said enough already though because I was getting ready to hostess the big SWEET SIXTEEN BASH for my cutie on Friday.
I love a party!

 Purple and Blue...Whoo Hoo.
 Sweet Seesters.

So excited from the partay I stayed up way to late, and after less than five hours of sleep my man and I drove almost eight hours round trip today to pick up those two youngest boys we were missing.  Well, he drove and I (wearing my sea bands) talked his ears off...it is my birthday and I can talk if I want to!

So whew.  What a week!!!!! I did pretty well on the calories, and was happy to see me sticking at minus 41 pounds total still on the scale yesterday morning.  HOWEVER, today was a total eating disaster.  This has all been fun, but I am ready to jump into our fall schedule this week.  I plan to start in earnest recording, reporting, and losing again beginning this Tuesday.  My goal is to get to a regular BMI by November.  Now I'm off  to rest my tired eyelids.  What a fun and busy summer it's been!  God is good...all the time!