Posted in A Day In The Life, My Journey To Healthy

Being Transparent

*disclaimer – I am not a medical expert. do your research!*

Yesterday I stepped out of my comfort zone a bit more and decided to be even more transparent about my health journey. I know, there are some of you thinking “this woman will share about everything from what toilet paper brand she uses to the actual color she uses on her hair, how could she be any more transparent???”, but rest assured there is so much about me you don’t know and I won’t share.

I did a Facebook Live while sporting my favorite hat to cover the bed head, and no makeup. And I talked about the fact that I had gained back 12 pounds of the 38 I had lost. It is NOT because the plan doesn’t work, once off if one opts to maintain healthy choices for eating they will continue to keep those pounds off and feel great. I made some very unhealthy choices, nearly every day for 2 weeks. Opting to eat something unhealthy is not cheating, this is not a diet. It is a choice. I make that choice on a day that was highly stressful and emotional at work, to grab for the cookie in the break room. That led to another cookie, and another. Later it was a bunch of something else and I started playing old tapes in my head of “I blew it today I’ll get back on the healthy tomorrow”. But then it was something else that triggered a poor choice. Old habits came in blowing party favors and tossing confetti.

I wanted to kick myself the morning I got on the scale and saw those very unhealthy pounds had returned. I did this to myself. See, once you are rocking health you can make an unhealthy choice to eat that cookie or drink that iced coffee packing 500+ calories.

You will regret that choice.

You will feel like crap afterward because your body has been free of the junk, but then the cravings start. Sugar is ADDICTIVE! Yes and it has similar effects on our brains to street drugs and is every bit as enslaving. Then you start eating poorly and it mentally it feels good. But guilt is there too. So to feel better the brain wants more sugary stuff. And it is everywhere, disguised as many words like corn syrup, dextrose, fructose, sucrose, and a host of others. That added sugar is believed to be even MORE ADDICTING than cocaine. I’m here to tell you that is my experience. One bad choice and I start craving foods that seem okay but are really loaded with added sugar. The buns on your hamburger, saltine crackers…start reading labels! High fructose corn syrup (which is now also going by a host of other names) can only be metabolized in the liver, where it is turned into triglycerides and becomes FAT in the body. And your body craves more! Welcome to your bad habit, your addiction you cannot seem to overcome. Get away from it! I teach my clients how to eat again and do away with these addictive substances found in processed foods.

I immediately got off my scale that day and got back on the healthy eating plan and 3 days later 6 pounds were gone. I started logging my water intake and noticed I was dehydrated as well as packing on unwanted baggage. My energy level is returning as my body is back to being a fat burning machine. This is why I love being a health coach, I know what my clients are going through, having tried and failed at every “diet” known to man. They only work, if they work, as long as you continue to follow that diet. Afterward the weight comes back and multiplies. You HAVE to change your unhealthy habits over to healthy ones. Break the addiction and then incorporate healthy choices and a healthy mindset and you are set. And if you do something unwise and introduce that addiction back into your life, well my clients have the tools, like me, to kick it to the curb and cleanse their bodies.

But it isn’t about the weight, it is about the health. Poor choices have side effects too, negative ones. My blood pressure goes up with my weight. My foot starts hurting again, my knees ache, and I feel like a sloth. For years I didn’t know I felt ‘sick’ because my body couldn’t recall what it felt like to be healthy. Now I can FEEL that difference and I do not like it. Give me my energy, great sleep, stamina and along with the side effect of losing excess weight. I LIKE feeling great! Healthy feels amazing.

On that note, here is my dinner for tonight. Lean, green and YUMMY!

Taco Stuffed Zucchini Boats
Makes 2 servings
Per serving
1 Leaner protein
1 fat
3 vegetables
2 1/4 condiments

2 medium zucchini – total weight one pound
2 tsp. olive oil
1 clove minced garlic
10 ounces lean ground turkey
1/4 tsp. chili powder
1/8 tsp. onion powder
1/8 tsp. oregano
1/2 tsp. cumin
1/2 tsp. smoked paprika
1/8 tsp. salt
1/2 cup Rotel diced tomatoes
3 ounces 2% reduced fat shredded cheddar cheese, divided

Just brown the meat and add the ingredients. Cut zucchini in half, brush lightly with the olive oil and bake, then fill with the meat and sprinkle the cheese over it and you have dinner!

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If you want information about becoming one of my clients, just reach out to me. 20 minutes on the phone and we can get you started on the road to a healthier you!

 

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Me before, and after 38 pounds lost in 3 months.
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Posted in A Day In The Life, Coffee

Grounds In My Coffee Cup Of Life

Coffee = life, at least most mornings in my world. The java kicks in and I am magically transformed into Super STNA! Katie bar the door this girl is kicking butt.  Without the liquid from the magic coffee beans I can and have functioned quite well and at the top of my game, but why would anyone want to do that when 32 ounces of sippable dynamite is available? But this is Friday, my standard off day, so the cape and tights are hanging up and my Nana tiara is perched on its pillow, ready for me to pull myself together for some fun.

Today I have a hot date with 2 mega cutie pies, my youngest two grandsons. We have a date at the Newport Aquarium today, and I can’t wait! Last night I was sitting down with my sister, mom and a huge salad to binge watch season 6 of NCIS (we started over at the beginning, can a get a yahoooooo for Netflix?) when I received a FaceTime call from my 2.75yo grandson asking if Nana would accompany his royal adorableness to see the fishes. I have a to-do list as long as my arm of really important things I need to do, but making memories is way more critical. When I’m dead and gone, or bat quano crazy in a nursing home and cannot remember my own name, these times will still be treasured by my grandsnugglers so I cleared my morning. I hope I never forget the sounds of the 2yo’s giggling as we crawl through the stingray exhibit because that is the stuff that warms my heart.

But first: coffee. Because toddlers have more energy than you can get drinking an entire Dunkin Donuts coffee shop.

Today we get to see the newest exhibit, the Octopus!! Or as he so sweetly says, opa-pus. I find them super creepy and yet fascinating. He will be beside himself when he sees it is there and we get to check it out up close. I have to admit I’m probably more excited about this than he will be but that is my inner child, the one who drops her tiara in the grass and goes splashing through mud puddles in the rain.

These are the grounds in my coffee cup today, and if I don’t get moving I will not be ready when the time comes, so this marvelous Nana is out! Have a fantastic day!

Posted in A Day In The Life, Uncategorized

Sleeping In Is Overrated

Hot cup of fresh coffee on the wooden table and stack of books tMy intent today was to sleep in until I woke up natural. Well natural arrived at 6am so here I am with laundry going, coffee, and y’all. Seems my body just cannot go more than 7-8 hours tops.

I might have wasted time laying in bed playing Yatzee on my phone and surfing Facebook but I have a date today with 2 cute members of the male side of the species, as in grandsons. The 2.5yo wants to go to the aquarium so Nana is up, plowing through the “I have to” stuff so I can go make memories.

I have a new addiction!!! I’ve always felt that even with no makeup a gal looks better with her lip color on. But when you are taking care of 16 adults with dementia you do not have time to stop and reapply your lipstick over and over again. Or when you are hanging at the Zoo with the grandkids, sipping coffee during a church service (yes our church has cup holders for your coffee cup..seems they get it that adulting is rough without the caffeine), etc. And leaving a lip print behind on your wine glass or grandchild’s forehead is not cool. My daughter’s lip color is always on point and so I broke down and shelled out the money for a starter kit of Lipsense during an online Facebook party she hosted for a friend-distributor. I’m hooked! Yes, I love my Avon, I’m a #BeautyBoss, but this stuff is AMAZING! SO many colors and I’m here to tell you this stuff is marvelous. NO I will not be selling it but I can hook you up with an enabler consultant if you’d like, just message me! I may need another job in addition to STNA and Health Coach to support this habit.

Any This Is Us fans in the house? OMG did anyone else have this desire to go toss the crockpot in the trash after the least episode? And finally we will be faced with the complete answers to how Jack died, right after the Super Bowl this Sunday. I may need to call off work the next day to mourn. This show is SO well written, and easily is my favorite one I’ve ever watched. If you don’t know what all the fuss is about, find season one and start from the beginning or it seriously won’t make sense to you at all. No fluff and unicorn farts here, this show is so realistic with the family dynamics and characters. You aren’t wishing there were people like the Pearsons in the world, you know them! In all likelihood you are one of them. If I have to DVR an episode I stay off social media until I see it so no spoilers.

Oops, time to go hit the shower so I’m ready to make those memories today! More to come as I’m off ALL WEEKEND BABY!

 

Posted in A Day In The Life, CNA Life, CNA STNA, Uncategorized

I Got Pooped On Today

Sounds like a toddler mom blog title but not me! No toddler involved here but rather adults. 3 different ones today, one of which went all PooPoo Picasso after some projectile diarrhea….twice in 2 hours time. Such can be the life of work with the elderly, especially memory care where their broken minds impact bodily functions and the ability to recognize they need a toilet.

My coworker and I were up to our eyeballs in dirty laundry, adult diapers, showers and never got to sit down. In fact the closest thing we had to a break today was using the bathroom ourselves. But sometimes doo doo happens. And the bad days only serve to make the good ones even better. It is hard until you remind yourself that these people honestly cannot help it. Many don’t realized they are incontinent, and in their right minds would be so devastated if they could see how they’d end up and what they would be doing. It can be tough working this side of heath care, it takes a huge heart and thick skin. Mostly the heart part. These are the people I love caring for so much. The ones who need reassurance that they are okay, their family knows where they are, yes their mother knows they are here (how awful to be 80+ years old and think you are in grade school or high school and your mom doesn’t know where you are at the moment). Loving them and helping them is why I pull myself out of bed early each day. They truly keep life in perspective for me in that I very much realize how blessed I am in this life and how small my own problems are compared to what they carry.

On a side note, Resolve carpet stain remover is amazing at lifting a poop stain from khaki colored scrub pants. Who knew? We didn’t have any Shout left so I grabbed that when the stain didn’t come out in the wash, rubbed it in and washed them again.

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This is where I’ll be most of the weekend!

I cannot remember the last time I was so happy for the weekend. Two days off after working 9 straight is a welcome time! I have some health coaching work to finish up, and church this weekend, twice, but I get to sleep in! And I can take my laptop, phone and binder out on the deck to work, then curl up with my Kindle and read. But first things first, coffee! Making memories with coffee and talking with the other Divas, then the rest.

But none of this can happen if the marvelous one doesn’t get herself to bed for a rejuvenating night of sleep!

Sleep well y’all!

 

Posted in A Day In The Life

I’ve Gone To The Dark Side

I knew the day would come when my beloved phone would need to be replaced. I had a Galaxy Note and really liked it, all the features and I knew the Android software well. But the phone was starting to do reboots for no reason and the battery life was beginning to wane. It was also responding slower and slower over time. Wednesday I went to Verizon, paid the remaining $29 owed, and traded in my Note for…and iPhone 7 Plus. I joined the dark side I’m told.

It took a bit of getting used too, at times I found it a tad frustrating. But I love technology so I quickly learned my way around and I think it is safe to say I’m to be an iPhone user from now on.

I also made a purchase on Amazon, after criticizing the items, until I had actually picked one up and messed around with it. Yes, the marvelous one is now the owner of 2, fidget spinners. *hangs head in mock shame* I KNOW, it is insane, but I do find them very soothing. I bought 2, and I really like them!

spinners

Life here in the Diva Den has become very laid back of late. Mom lacks energy to go the long haul with us, and really doesn’t want to drag Matilda around with her (the bag that her peg-tube empties into) so we do a lot of hanging out at home. The steady stream of visitors in the form of family and friends is nice, and helps us to make memories. It probably is a good thing we are all introverts and need to be home in our nests to recharge. Right now, I’m at my desk, window open enjoying the cool air (it is August 6th and only 71 degrees), listening to birds, rain, and incoming air planes. Mostly just quiet and I like that a lot. My job can be really stressful and trying to build a coaching business while working full time and helping out at home means this girl needs down time to recharge her batteries.

I’m not sure yet what will happen when she is gone. Hanging on to all this house for 3 of us seems silly, and it is not a cheap home to maintain. Sis and I have tossed around several ideas to each having our own apartment in the same complex or sharing one, or even renting/buying a small house. Just not sure what we want to do and until we have to make a decision the whole thing just sits there waiting to be addressed. It can go on that way too, we simply are not ready to face that.

 

 

 

Posted in A Day In The Life, Uncategorized

My 2nd Shift Life

When I started this job on  April 13th, I said I would be willing to work on 2nd shift until the new neighborhood opened in our community, then I’d move to 1st shift. That was great until I actually worked on 2nd shift for a few weeks and realized that this is like having 2 full days in one! Sure, I have the same amount of time awake in a day as if I were working 1st shift, but it is very different in how it plays out. I’ll explain.

Working 1st shift, putting in 8 hours right out of the gate, left me tired and not wanting to do much after work. I had 5 or 6 hours before bedtime but my job is physically labor intensive so I was wiped out and spent the rest of the day trying not to fall asleep. Usually I’d dose off while crocheting or reading. Writing a blog post didn’t even cross my sleepy radar!

Now I rise after 8 to 9 hours of sleep, have 5 or 6 hours before work to crochet, read, run errands, hang out with my mom, daughter etc, then I go to work. I tackle that physically draining job on the last 8 hours of the day, then come home and I am ready to sleep. No insomnia (my brain and body are ready to seek the sandman), and I sleep SO deep and restful. I accomplish so much more in a day that it feels like I’ve had 2 full days in one!

Having the mornings free means I can do a lot of things, like zoo trips, shopping, etc., before work. These things were usually pushed off to my weekend off (every other weekend). And I can make it to church every Sunday even though I work every other weekend because I have time to go in the morning before I have to head off to work!

This works well for me because I no longer have children to raise, they are adults with kids of their own. I know it would not work well for a mom of school aged little ones as they’d not see them much, but for the person of the empty nest it is ideal!

One coworker is moving to 1st with the new wing opening and wanted me to join her, but I just cannot see myself giving up my current situation. Maybe when all the weight is off and my health is back in line to where I have energy all of the time like I do now. But right now, 2nd shift works wonderfully for me!

 

Posted in A Day In The Life, Uncategorized

The Plague Has Arrived

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My daughter’s first find of the cicada infestation.

 

For whatever reason, the 17 year cicadas that hit our area have decided to grace us with their noisy presence 4 years early this time. I don’t pretend to have any scientific knowledge as to the why, and not certain the scientist/professor at Mt. St. Joe college nearby does either. He studies them and asks if you are in the greater Cincinnati area, that you email photos and locations to him at cicada@msj.edu to help him in his study.

Being that this is Cincinnati, it isn’t a real shock that this is going on, after all we’ve been known to have the heat on in the morning and the air conditioning on in the late day. One week, in January, we had snow, then warmth, thunderstorms and tornadoes, then back to snow. Yes, in a one week period. We do weird here very well.

While incredibly creepy looking, they are harmless. They do not bite and pretty much all they do is provide a great deal of deafening noise with their little mating calls, and food for birds. It does freak one out if hit in the head as they fly past, and they seem to really lack navigational skills because you will frequently be dive bombed. And they are EVERYWHERE in the areas they emerge.

As a child, I was deathly afraid of them, but my brothers found them rather fun to play with, pulling off wings before squashing them. As an adult I was known to learn who was afraid, then catch them and put them in their office while they were at lunch. The unsuspecting victim always assumed it came in on their clothing. As a child of 4 years old, my son and his buddy across the hall in our apartment building would catch them and feed them to his friend’s piranhas. This was a source of endless amusement to them both.

Catching them is very simple, just pinch their wings together and pick them up. But be prepared as they will try to fly free, causing a strong vibration in your fingers and if you aren’t anticipating it you will let go on impulse.

My yorkie, Penny, when she was alive for one infestation, used to try to sneak them into the house to play with, but her mouth was so small we’d see the little legs wiggling out the sides. I admit, I look forward to letting one in the house to see how the cats deal with it, supervised of course.

Some folks in these parts actually eat them! Cooked, chocolate covered, even raw. BLAH! No thank-you I believe I will pass on that, um, delicacy.

So, as they are beginning to emerge, it will only get way worse before it gets better!

 

Posted in A Day In The Life

Sunday Wine Musings…

It is 7:10pm, first day of daylight savings time, so my body and mind believe it is really only 6:10pm and I have to convince them this is not the case because I must be up at 4am tomorrow for work. Hoping the wine helps with this a bit.

I’ve been away from the blog for a while, wasn’t sure I was going to keep writing it but I’ve decided to stick around and try like crazy to post more often. Life has a funny way of invading your plans and priorities have to be addressed. Sadly most days writing is not the priority. At least folks can tell from my Instagram on my page that I have not died!

While I’ve been away, I had to patiently wait until my daughter passed the 3 month mark to let the world know that I’ll be a grandma for the 6th time come late summer/early fall. I am beyond over the moon about this, as the Nana gig is by far the most amazing yet. I am hoping for a girl this time, as we only have one girl in the mix, but a healthy baby is a joy regardless of gender. Early in April we’ll find out that secret and it is either buying more Bengals and Reds attire for a boy, or tutus for a girl. Well and yes sports items for her too because that is how we roll.

News flash…save your money and if you are into those Yeti tumblers, I can tell you that RTIC is just as wonderful and about 1/3 to 1/4 of the cost. I fill mine as I leave for work at 5am and that coffee is still hot at 9:45am in our daily stand-up meeting at work. If I use it for cold drinks, ice is still in it 12 hours later. Could be longer but I’m rarely one to let anything sit that long before consuming it. Really, save yourself a fortune! I’m making a series of cup cozies for that size tumbler, though they don’t need one as they never ‘sweat’ and are easily held no matter if it is a hot or cold drink inside. It is all about having a fashionable cup at that point! 🙂

Over the past week I was trying like crazy to come down with a rip-roaring sinus infection. Maybe the weather didn’t help as we had a few odd days with winter, then spring (even a tornado warning at work) then back to winter again. We are currently experiencing winter for those interested in what cue card nature is reading. The infection was growing, causing a headache, snot factory, and over all fatigue. In the past I have boiled water and put tea tree oil in it and inhaled the steam, but that can burn your skin and its uncomfy to breathe. So, on a whim I googled and found out I could put tea tree oil in my neti pot!!! One drop, per the many articles I found, or it can irritate the sinus membranes. But I did this twice a day over 3 days and could feel it draining away. Today I’m breathing freely and really amazed. NOTE: I am NOT a doctor and this is NOT medical advice…just passing along what worked for me, flush those sinuses with saline and tea tree oil at your own risk.

I’ve not been neglecting my shop, in fact I have several items to stock, just haven’t taken photos and built listings. Again, life has been in the way a bit but I now have the supplies for shipping and I’ll be placing these over the next few days. My daughter is starting to add things as well, so we’ll have some really nice items coming this week.

Speaking of her…she recently became a Jamberry rep. Like me, she has a passion for direct sales, but needed to find her passion for a product. Me, I’m back on Avon but that is another post. My baby girl LOVES the nail wraps and finally took the plunge to become a rep. And she is making money, which is no real shock as once you find your passion product you are going to do well. It doesn’t hurt that these sell themselves right off your finger nails. Seriously she has people stop her to ask where she got her nails done. I had tried them once but didn’t have a real clue what I was doing. Now, if you go to a party or search YouTube you will have it down. I let her do a manicure on me 2 weeks ago from her stock and was blown away. I wash my hands at work easily 30 to 50 times in a shift. The wraps held up great through it all. And trust me I am hard on my hands, they are my most used tool every day at work. I also bite my nails. So this helped me make it 2 weeks without biting them at all. I actually have some nail to work with today and she came over and did my nails and my mom’s with the wraps we purchased from her. Mom is going through chemo and her nails just are so thin and fragile now. We figure wraps will help to protect them and she found a color she loved. You can see how short my nails must have been by where they are today, with this new french manicure wrap on. I LOVE them!

My index finger is the shortest I have and I’m determined to keep at this to get something grown. I cannot go real long, as nails cause skin tears to our elderly residents, their skin is onion paper-thin so it takes so little to injure them. But I can have pretty nails!  Each sheet is enough for 2 manicures with a few wraps to spare, and only $15 a sheet! Check out her shop, the selection is just incredible. You can do a Basic Bundle for only $58.50 and that includes 4 sheets of wraps, the mini heater, and all the supplies you need to do your wraps, so it is quite the savings!

Well the dryer is calling me with the song of its people, so time to get my laundry folded and tuck myself into bed for my day tomorrow.

Y’all have a marvelous one!

 

 

Posted in A Day In The Life

Sporting Pink & White Cheetah Jammies

Last night we finished the last episode of Blue Bloods on Netflix. We divas are huge fans of the show so we started at the very beginning and watched each season, a few episodes a night, over the past few weeks.  Once we finished, we were a bit bored.  Boredom and the Diva Den are not a very good combo.

3 of us are into Pokemon GO, so we went out hunting them, after dark, around midnight, after a thunderstorm, on our street. Because? Well a Pikachu was in our vicinity and we didn’t want to miss the opportunity to catch one! My niece was in shorts and a jersey, sis was wearing white jammie pants with tiny, navy blue hearts and navy blue top, also navy slippers.  Me? The fashionista that I am, wore a black jammie top, baggie pink and white jammie pants with black cheetah print on them, black slippers with giant, hot pink bows on them (Hello Kitty baby!), what can I say, I looked hot of course! Our neighbors already think we are a bunch of crazy cat women, why disappoint. We did not get the Pikachu though, too bad.

20160730_103020-1And now? Same jammies, bed head, with my pink, Hello Kitty coffee mug full of my favorite daytime beverage, and a colby cheese on wheat toast sandwich.  I know, you are jealous, but not everyone can be this sexy and cool. Just embrace your own inner freak and it will be okay. (those spots are not on the top, but on the mirror, which I clearly need to clean!)

I’m on day 2 of 7 off in a row! I need this break, not only to crochet and work on items for my shop, but to physically recover from working this job. My 53yo body cannot take a lot of that for an extended time without some chance to recover.

Now that the delivery has been made, I wanted to share the custom order By Hook & By Hand made. We were a tad nervous about how it would turn out in the earthy tones, especially for a baby blanket, but we were very pleased. The new mommy was too! Delivered in person, I got to meet and hold the little man who will snuggle in this blanket for many years to come, and see it in his room which is very close in color to the green in the blanket.

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Coming soon, another Bavarian throw, a new baby blanket, more wash clothes and scrubbies, a poncho, and one very cool Halloween throw.  Hoping to get a lot accomplished while off these remaining 6 days. Boo is working on the Halloween one at this writing, and I’m hooking the Bavarian.  Coffee and hooking, the best therapy ever! Time to get to it, this day is slipping away fast. Y’all have a great one!

 

Posted in A Day In The Life, Uncategorized

Hot Coffee & A Pink Snuggie

20160127_154728I’m not really sure why, but I’m cold today.  No hot flashes to keep me warm (where are they when we actually need them?), and while it isn’t cold in the house, I feel chilled.  Usually my heat vent in my bedroom is closed because I do get too warm, but not today. So here I sit in my pink Snuggie.  Don’t laugh, it does keep me warm, along with this wonderful, hot cup of coffee on the desk.  Those are paired with jeans, a sweater and my pink, Hello Kitty footie socks and Hello Kitty slippers.  Admit it, you are insanely jealous!

This morning was a sleep in day, I made it to 8am and that was as late as I could manage.  Considering it is 3.5 hours past my alarm for work days, it was fantastic!  Coffee and mom time followed.  Every morning that mom and I are both home and awake in the morning, is coffee time.  We grab our cups and curl up in the arm chairs in our living room and talk.  While my life is one giant, “this did not go as planned“, nothing could be better than having these years with her, on a daily basis, to laugh, share, and make memories.  All too soon she will be gone, and thankfully I’ve been given a gift these past nearly 6 years, to be able to spend these final years of her life journey under the same roof.

We ran one errand today, heading to the grocery store to pick up about 3 items to make lime garlic chicken for dinner, though while we did get what we needed the plan changed first to walking tacos, then to steak burgers.  We ended up buying $60+ of unplanned purchases, which included a scrumptious chocolate cake because when we found out it is National Chocolate Cake day today, well we didn’t want to miss celebrating.  So, lunch included a plate full of baby-angels-in-the-mouth goodness.  We were back in our arm chairs indulging in chocolate decadence and loving every minute!