Thursday, April 30, 2009

The Princess and Her King...AKA Daddy...

My blog is at risk of becoming a blog all about food. So in the interest of variety and because these pictures just plain make me smile...I bring you The Princess and her Daddy...

I hope they make you smile too...

The truth is...I love these two, utterly and completely, and watching my firstborn be "Daddy" touches my heart so deeply it often makes me cry with the simple beauty of it

Wednesday, April 29, 2009

My Pop is home! He's weary from his ordeal and he's on a new set of meds..but he's home! He was dozing in his favorite rocking chair with a smile on his face when I left last night. I wanted to snap a picture but I didn't want to disturb him so I left him to enjoy his peaceful moment without a photo...but trust was a sweet smile. His smile can bring me to tears with the simple beauty of it. (apparently it can also bring me to tears this morning when I simply recall it to type about it)

Ok...on to my menu for yesterday.

Breakfast was oatmeal, fiber one, and apple for 4 points. My morning coffee with sugar free creamer made my morning a 5 point total.

Lunch was the other half of the veggie sandwich I got at Subway on Monday. I added a slice of fat free ham and paired it with Pringles Light chips and an apple for a 7 point lunch.

My afternoon snack was a Fiber One Oats & Chocolate bar and some Sweet coconut Chai tea...again. 2 points. (no photo)

Dinner was late because I picked my Pop up at the hospital after work and drove him home to my sister. She had an abcessed tooth pulled and wasn't up to driving. It was a treat for me to spend some time in the car with my Pop...just the two of us! I turned on some hymns and he was singing along with them...what a SWEET moment!

Anyway...dinner was a baked potato topped with Hormel Turkey Chili with no beans. I REALLY like the flavor of this chili a lot. I poured it over the baked potato, and topped it with fat free cheese, fat free sour cream and diced onion. This was a quick and filling dinner at 6.5 points.

My snack while watching Deadliest Catch (I love that show!) was Fage yogurt sweetened with stevia and flavored with vanilla extract, topped with Fiber One cereal.

That's it! Now on to face today and whatever it brings!

Tuesday, April 28, 2009

Back on menu for Monday...

My Dad is still in the hospital but he's MUCH improved. He is through the worst of whatever these "episodes" are that he has and is now recovering. He is able to speak clearly again and is sleeping a lot. He's going to have a couple more tests done while he's in there simply because he needs to have them and it's much easier to do them while he's inpatient.

My menu is also back to normal and "recovering" from the crisis of the weekend! I am back on plan and feeling good about life returning to a more even keel.

Here is my menu for Monday...

Breakfast was a Carb Check bagel with fat free cream cheese, an orange, cut up and topped with Fage yogurt, and a big cup of Starbucks coffee. 4 points

Lunch was a 6 inch Veggie sandwich from Subway, to which I added a slice of ham and paired with a serving of Pringles Light Chips. 6 points

My afternoon snack was an Oats & Chocolate fiber One bar and a cup of Sweet Coconut Chai Tea. 2 points

Dinner was 6 ounces of grilled tilapia, Turnip "fries" and roasted brussels sprouts, along with a few baked fries (potato) 5.5 Points

Dessert was orange sements and watermelon balls topped with Fage yogurt. 4 points

I really didn't "need" this last snack that I ate while sitting in bed looking at a magazine...oh the luxury! This is a Skinny Cow Cookies and Cream ice cream sandwich. I didn't photograph it. This is a photo I snagged off the website. These are really quite good and could EASILY be a problem if I kept them around on a regular basis! 3 points

That's it...yesterday consisted of work, delivering meals for Meals on Wheels, and getting back to a regular routine.

Monday, April 27, 2009

Kelly's having a SWEET giveaway!!!...

Head on over to Kelly's Blog, Happy Texans and see what this sweet giveaway is all about. I need to win this one!

Monday...weighing in....and other things...

Monday morning is my weigh in time. I was VERY tempted to skip it this morning...but then denial isn't really the best tool for learning to live a healthier lifestyle, now is it? So here it Monday morning reckoning with the scale. The scale is a heartless thing. It doesn't care that I have spent hours and hours at the hospital. It doesn't count hour after hour of repeating the phrase, "Pop, you need to lay back and relax, you can't get up." as exercise. It doesn't take into account that this weekend was emotionally hard so when my son and my darling granddaughter invited me to the chinese buffet it was only understandable that I would go and that I wouldn't use a lot of restraint. Nope...the scale is hard and unbending and simply states the cold hard facts of the consequences of tossing your healthy eating plan aside for the weekend. It simply and coldly have gained a pound this week.

Honest...I started each day with the intention of eating's my breakfast from yesterday. I ate it in the car as I drove to pick up my sister and then on to the hospital. Unfortunately, it was the only really healthy meal I had!

So, I am over the scale this morning. The weekend is done. I had my birthday celebration and a crazy hospital weekend and only gained a pound. I'm over it and on to a better week ahead.

We still don't really have any answers about what triggered our Pop's latest episode but he seems to be through the worst of it and is now sleeping it off in the hospital. Everyone seems to think it may well have been an adverse reaction to the medication that is supposed to be preventing this very thing...{{sigh}}. They will keep him and run a few more tests and treat him for the urinary tract infection he has that never seems to clear up. I'm just relieved that he is calmer and able to sleep and seems to be getting over this one.

Yesterday my light of my life granddaughter drew me a picture for my birthday. It is a treasure to me!

"Grandma Honey, this is a picture of you and me. We both have red shirts because it's your favorite color and we're holding hands...and we both have beautiful bows in our hair."

I love this picture more than I can say...of course I do...I am a grandma...we're like that you know! I am the one on the left with the rather large blue ears...LOL

Thank you all for the kind comments and prayers for my Pop. Now I am off to start a new week.

Sunday, April 26, 2009

Our beloved Pop is back in the hospital. That's my sister, the saint, Joyce in the photo with him. Joyce is Pop's primary caregiver and she is my hero for what she does for our Pop.

As you can see, Pop has quite a shiner developing from his great escape the other night.

We are getting ready to go back to the hospital this morning. We don't really know what caused him to become so disoriented and combative yesterday. There is talk of it being another stroke. There is also talk of it being an adverse reaction to the antipsychotic medications that are supposed to help when he begins to halucinate but that seem to only make things worse.

This is my prayer for my Pop

Sweet Jesus,
I know that you love my Pop infinitely more than I ever could and that your timing is always perfect. But Lord, if it's in your will to do so, would you please take my Pop home to live with you in Heaven. He's tired, he's ran his race, he's fought his battles, and he's ready to come and be with you in eternity. So Lord, if it's in your will, would you, by your mercy and grace, call our Pop home to you? This I pray in your name, the name above every name.

Saturday, April 25, 2009

Saturday morning...

Vern and I had a really nice evening last night, for my birthday. We went to our favorite pizza joint...a little hole on the wall place in Seaport Village called Assagios.

This is "our" table. We always sit at this table when we come here...even if we have to stand back and stare people down to get them to move!...not really...we don't stare people down...but we do wait for them to leave and then snag the table as soon as they get up. It takes 20 to 30 minutes for the pizza to be ready and a good number of the patrons get pizza by the slice so it's usually enough time for them to finish their slice and be one their way...leaving us to "our" table!

We had the Chicago Style Pizza. (which I did not photograph)I have no idea if this is really a Chicago style pizza, being from Southern California and having never been anywhere near Chicago, I can only assume they are know what they're talking about when they say it's Chicago style! I can tell you its definitely our favorite pizza EVER!

It was my birthday so I left my points counter gadget at home and I went and had 2 slices. We walked a little bit but it was cold so we really didn't walk around as much as we normally do. We stopped on the way home and Vern bought ice cream and I got some "Skinny Cow" ice cream sandwiches. I was tempted to get something nore decadent but I knew that I would be faced with leftovers and I wanted my pointless evening to be done and over with in one night. So, I got the Skinny Cow sandwiches, had one for dessert, was pleasantly surprised by how good they are. I have leftovers but they are leftovers that will easily fit into my point allotment.

I have yet to try out my new popcorn popper but I'm sure I'm going to love it.

So, today is a back on track day for me. I am sipping my second cup of coffee and getting ready to begin my day.

Our Pop had another rough night and my poor sister is feeling pretty frazzled and tired. We are feeling pretty sure that it is time to begin using a restraint vest to keep him from falling in the night when he tries to get out of bed. My sister would still have to sit with him when he's agitated and confused but at least he wouldn't fall if she dozed off for a minute or two. So, that is one of my plans for today. I am going to make a vest that will keep him from getting up unassisted in the night. We are also going to install alarms on the doors so that he can't wander off. We feel that our beloved Pop really doesn't have much more time here on this earth and will be called home to Jesus in the not too distant future. we are certain that we want to keep him at home where he is loved and cared for with dignity. We've seen, first hand, the way he is treated in the hospital and we know that it would be even worse in a nursing home situation...and we are determined that we are not going to let that be the fate of our Pop. I remember the last time he was hospitalized, my sister and I kept having to remind the nurses..."This is our FATHER!!! This is not just some useless old man! He is our dad. He served his country. He raised a family. He matters and you will treat him with respect!!!" I was apalled by the insensitive, indifferent care he received. So, if a restraint vest will help accomplish the goal of letting him live out his last days in the home he built and raised a family in..then so be it. But it's a difficult choice...{{sigh}}}

Friday, April 24, 2009

Happy Birthday to me....

Considering that I found a surprise gift waiting for me in my chair this morning...and considering that I had to share it with a certain four legged, furry friend...I thought this card from Vern was particularly appropriate!

Notice that my Knight in Somewhat Rusty Armor is doing VERY WELL in the birthday surprise department! The bag contains an air-pop popcorn popper. Not something I would have thought of getting for myself but definitely useful! (Honestly, I think he hates the microwave smelling like popcorn...LOL) He remembered that I love polka dots.....and he remarked that he would have gotten black and white polka dots if they would have had them. He did quite well...quite well indeed! AND...this surprise was completely unexpected because last week he also bought me my dishes that I wanted!

Thursday, April 23, 2009

The Great Escape....

This is what had me so frazzled this morning. As I have mentioned before, my Dad is 85 years old and suffers from dementia and has frequent, small strokes which cause him to be further confused. He's been having a rough couple of days. He's been more confused...well actually, he's been pretty out of touch with reality and increasingly agitated. We have yet to find the right combination of medications to control him and keep him safe when he has these episodes.

My wonderful sister Joyce, lives with my parents and cares for my dad. She also cares for our elderly aunt...but that's another story. Anyway, last night she thought Dad was finally sleeping and she dozed off for some much needed sleep. She woke up at around 3am and could not find Dad anywhere. As you can imagine she was panicked and horrified! She and my other sister immediately ran outside to look for him.

They found him down the street. He had apparently ran down the street and stumbled in the dark and fell. He was about half a block ( a long block) away. The neighbor's dog had started barking and wouldn't calm down and it caused the neighbor to go outside to see what the matter was. They found poor Pop lying in the street all scraped up and bloodied. They called 911 and stayed with him waiting for the police and paramedics to arrive. My sisters were alerted to where he was by the sounds of the people talking to him and reassuring him.

The paramedics advised that he should go to the hospital by ambulance and be checked out. He's ok. He's very scraped up and sore and was badly frightened by the whole experince. He skinned both knees, the palms of both hands, his shoulder and his poor head. We are so thankful that he wasn't hurt worse and that he didn't manage to get someplace where he wouldn't have been found for hours or days. We thank God that He was watching over our beloved Pop.

Now we are discussing ways of keeping him safe and preventing this from happening again. Oh my goodness...we love this man. This is our Dad.....our Hero....our Pop.

Just a quick check in...

I'm just posting a very quick check in this morning as I get ready to dash out the door. I haven't fallen off the face of the earth! It's been a crazy couple of days that I'll describe in detail when I have time to REALLY put a post together. But for now...I am here, I am eating on plan, I've had a couple of wonderful visits with my sister, there's some issues going on with my Dad...and time is completely out of control for me!

Happy Thursday Everyone!!!


***Note*** I am typing this on Thursday night, trying to catch up. I uploaded these photos on Wednesday night when I came home and intended to come back later to add the text.'s later!...LOL

Ok...the day started with my coffee as usual. I love my morning coffee! 1 point.

Breakfast was oatmeal and Fiber One, with an apple chopped up in it, and flavored with PB2. 5 points

Lunch was a vegetaran burger on a Western Alternative bagel, a few Pringles Light chips, snap peas and an apple. 5.5 points

An afternoon snack is not something I outinely have but this day I was going straight to my folks house after work and I didn't want to be tempted by allowing myself to go there hungry. So I had a Carb Check Cinnamon bagel and some fat free cream cheese, sprinkled with cinnamon. 2.5 points.

After work I headed over to my parent's house to meet up with my sisters. It has been many, many years since we've all been together in one place at the same time, so we took a few photos. It was so great to be together with my sisters and my Mom all at the same time!
From Left to right: My sisters, Debbie, Joyce, Myself, and Tammy. The small boy is Gavin, Debbie's grandson. He insisted on being in every photo and he's pretty darned cute, so we let him!

This next one is the same line-up except that's our Mom in the front! The Clifton Girls!! Together again! We would have loved to get a shot with our Dad in it, but he wasn't having a good day. Dad suffers from dementia and has small strokes which cause him to be further confused. That day he was very confused and agitated and we were trying not to stimulate him...but we would have loved to have had him in the photos with all of his girls who love him so very much and who still know he's a hero

After I got home from my parents' house, I made myself a baked potato, topped with vegetarian chili, fat free cheese and sour cream, and sprinkled with onion. 6 points

I needed a snack before bed so I had some Fage yogurt, PB2, a banana, and some Walden farms chocolate syrup.....oh YUM!! 3 points

Daily points used: 23
Target 23
Whew! I am getting caught up!

Wednesday, April 22, 2009

My menu for Tuesday April 21....

Ok...trying to catch up a little bit here! This is my menu for Tuesday, April 21.

***Note*** I am posting this on Thursday April 23 but I am going to let it post here for the sake of continuity.

It's been such a crazy week and the days are all kind of running I'mnot going to try and recall a lot of details about what happened on Tuesday. I did, however, upload my menu photos with the intention of coming back to post so I can at least post that!

Breakfast was oatmeal and Fiber One Cereal, with a apple cut up and cooked in it. I topped it with stevia and Smart Balance Light Buttery Spread. This is probably my favorite breakfast! Of course I had my usual 2 cups of coffee with sugar free creamer in it for a morning total of 5 points.

Lunch was a ham and cheese sandwich on light bread, Pringles fat Free chips, an apple and some PB2 to dip it in. 6 points.

In the afternoon I had a snack of a Fiber One Oats and Chocolate Bar and a cup of Sweet coconut Chai herbal tea. 2 points.

Dinner was a green salad and a leftover chicken breast that my sister cooked for me. It was breaded with panco but I peeled it off before I heated it up. There was also some cheese inside of it. It was about a half ounce of cheese. 5 points.

My snck wa a bowl of cereal, puffed kamut, fiber one, a banana and skim milk....and ANOTHER Oat and Chocolate Bra (shame on me!) 7 points

So, my total for the day was 25 points.

Target 23

weekly points used 2

activity points remaining 2

Tuesday, April 21, 2009

Monday was a special day...

yesterday I spent the day with my sister, Debbie, who is in town to meet her newest granddaughter. We had not spent a day together in many, many years. We had a wonderful day of reconnecting and catching up with each other. Needless to say, I didn't count points or take photographs of meals. I simply enjoyed being in the company of my sister.

Today it's back to my normal routine...

Monday, April 20, 2009

Monday...weighing in....

My weight stayed the same this week. I would be lying if I said I am not a bit disappointed but overall I'm ok with it. I have stayed on plan. I am making lifestyle changes and I know that the scale is not going to reward me each and every week...especially at my age.
I didn't walk as much this past week as I should so I need to be more diligent about managing my time to allow those walks. Beyond that I will continue to do what I'm doing and reminding myself that the ultimate reward for making right choices is not a number on a scale.
Today I am going to go spend the day with my sister, Debbie, who is in town from Florida. We don't get to see each other nearly enough and I am looking forward to the day with her very much!

Sunday, April 19, 2009

Look what Grandpa Vern bought for Grandma Honey today...

It's early for my birthday. My birthday isn't until Friday. But look what came home from Costco with us today! So I guess he really was listening after all!...

My Knight in Somewhat Rusty Armor gained huge points today in the sensitive, sweet hubby department!

Saturday, April 18, 2009

Grandma Honey Snags a Video from YouTube...

This is a video of my oh-so-adorable, very much the apple of her grandmother's eye, granddaughter at her very first soccer practice....

I realize I am quite unashamedly biased in favor of this child but I think you'd have to agree that this is some pretty cute stuff here. This is the stuf that warms the heart!

Just look for the most adorable child in the auditorium you can't miss her...but just in case you can't pick her out of the group based on the cute factor alone...she is the one with the pink shin guards, number 3 on her shirt, and the bow in her hair..

Oh my goodness I am just about to have a cute overload watching this!!!

The real day in the life of a band wife....not exactly as I imagined...but close!...

So...having made the decision that I would go to the event, and that I would do so with a good attitude, I got myself ready and fixed a breakfast consisting of a Carb Check bagel spread with Smart Balance light Buttery Spread, and a smoothie made from four frozen strawberries, a quarter cup of frozen blueberries and a cup of fat free milk. I had two cups of coffee with sugar free french vanilla creamer while I was getting dressed and whining on my blog about having to go. My morning totaled 7 points.

I had no sooner gotten my bagel out of the toaster and the placed straw in my smoothie when Vern announced he was ready to leave. I'm not really sure why we needed to leave for the event an hour early when it's fiften minutes from our house but he was ready to go. I said "great, I'll be right with you" and proceeded to finish my breakfast!

So, we jump in his jalopy (his term for his car) and off we go towards City Heights. This is us waiting in the car for someone...anyone....from the band to show up. Notice I am smiling...LOL. I am not voicing the thoughts that are running through my mind about being told to arrive at 11am only to sit in the car and wait for someone else to show up 30 to 40 minutes later. Remember, I am TRYING to have a good attitude about all of this...and actually, I really am only somewhat amused more than anything else. Well...ok..that's not true exactly. I'm hot too. It was 85 degrees today and were were in the the sun.

Finally someone else arrived and I am now waiting in the car while they figure out where they're going to set up to play.

I keep telling myself...."remember the fingers, Vickie...remember the fingers...don't get mad...just think about something good and pleasant (like the fingers) and try not to be irritated that no one who knows anything is there yet"

Finally, Vern comes back and tells me they are going to set up inside the fenced area and that it's cooler in there. So he gets his equipment out of the car and I follow him into the area. He's's cooler under the coverings over the picnic tables.

So...I decided that I could entertain myself by taking photos while I waited around for this thing to get started. I have this new habit of taking pictures of our feet in different locations around town so I pulled Vern over and had him pose for the picture of our feet. He always enjoys the photographing of the feet so he's good about it...LOL. It was his idea to get the neck of his bass in the shot and it was a nice touch, I thought.

I saw my reflection in Vern's sunglasses as I was taking photos and he was watching me. I thought it was cool looking so I took a picture of him watching me taking a picture of him watching me! I like it!

I decided to walk across the park to the restroooms and stopped along the way to photograph a pink sign welcoming the neighborhood to the event.

I also photographed the information table for the organization behind the band that Vern is playing with. It's an organization called O.Y.I.E. Music. They have a heart to reach kids through music and they are a pretty neat organization.

Finally, around 2:30 or so the band was up and playing. I was pleasantly surprised that they did praise and worship music for this event which I enjoy much more than the music they normally play. They are very talented, don't get me wrong, but the style of music they normally do isn't well suited to my 50 year old ears!...LOL.

So...the songs were sung and the food served and there was even a spanish speaking pastor who presented the gospel. All in wasn't really so bad. yes, there were times...several of them...when I wished that I was someplace else but it didn't kill me to go there and be my Knight in somewhat Rusty Armor's biggest groupie. On the way out...after much backslapping and high fiving with the rest of the guys...he thanked me for coming and told me it meant alot to him. Well, ok...he didn't actually say it that way....he said "it was really cool that you came, I liked having you there."....which translated meant a lot to him to have me there.

Ad then he agreed to go by my parents' house where several other family members were gathered for the afternoon. And guess who one of them just happened to be? My sweet little Autumn, still in her uniform from her very first PeeWee Soccer Game! Oh my goodness...she is the cutest little soccer player I have ever seen. She kept saying "Look Grandma Honey, I am a number three on the Koala Bears!" I told her that she was my favorite girl in the whole wide world and she replied..."and you are my very favorite Grandma in the whole wide world" that is good stuff I tell you! Good stuff indeed!

We headed for home after a full day. Vern wanted food from Taco Bell. i was tempted but decided that I would rather fix myself something. So Vern walked next door to Taco Bell...yes, we live within walking distance to any number of restauratnts and fast food places...with Taco Bell being right next door....and i set about fixing myself dinner. The Carb Check bagel and smoothie that I had for breakfast kept me full and satisfied all day. but by 5pm I was getting pretty hungry!

I made tacos using vegetarian ground beef style crumbles, some of the leftover vegetarian chili from the other night, LaTortilla Factory Smart and Delicious Tortillas, and all the standard taco fixings...lettuce, tomato, fat free cheese, salsa, and fat free sour cream. I had some leftover brown rice in the fridge and I mixed it with some of the taco filling and added salsa to it...making it into a spanish rice side dish. this was a delicious dinner at 7.5 points.

Of course i had a snack after dinner. Fage Total 0 yogurt, flavored with PB2 and frozen banana, topped with Fiber One Cereal and drizzled with Walden Farms chocolate syrup.....good stuff!

I have 5 points remaining from my daily allowance but I think I am just going to call it a day and go to bed. I am not hungry at all and I can't see eating any more when I am not hungry.

So, I am calling today a good day.