I guess I run now

or I’m trying to anyway.


Back again…again.

The trip home was a bit short, but nice, despite the awful circumstances. The wake was okay cause I got to catch up with a lot of cousins I haven’t seen in a while & the funeral was actually pretty lovely. The priest made an effort to talk about my uncle & what made him special, which was nice. Then my cousin asked my brother & I to speak, so I elaborated on the stories I told below. We all had great stories to share. Really was more of a celebration of his life than a mourning of his passing, which I think is what funerals are meant to be.

Eating wasn’t great during the trip, but I did walk a bit. Stepped on mom’s scale right before I left yesterday & (if it’s right), I’ve lost another 4 pounds since my last weigh in. Okay, that’s not much, but I’ll take it & try to do more with it in the next couple of weeks.

My inlaws stayed at our house, extending their vacation, and watched the dog, which was really sweet. & they didn’t realize that we crate the dog whenever we leave him alone in the house…although we’ve been talking about seeing if he’ll behave if we let him have the run of the place. So…since they didn’t know not to give him the run of the place, they gave him the run of the place, and he was fine. Nice to know & now we don’t have to stress about it.

So far I’ve done a 30-min hike around an old dam (up & down hills) and a 30-min walk along a nature trail. Hubby’s got pizza on the menu for tonight (with salad), so I’m thinking of using this downtime to take the dog for an hour-long walk along the portage. Be nice to get some exercise in if I’m going to be eating pizza crust later. Yeah…that’s a plan. Maybe hubby will join me since my inlaws are napping.

Looking forward to seeing what ya’ll have been up to this past weekend.


Filed under : General
By bigprof
On July 27, 2009
At 4:08 pm
Comments : 4


So I’m here with hubby & the inlaws & I get a text from my nephew just telling me to call his house & ask about my uncle…and telling me not to let my mom & sister know he text’d me. This is the uncle I went to visit at the hospital while I was home last month. & yeah, he passed away today.

He was a great guy. My dad died when I was 9, so the men in my life who sortof showed me what fathers & men were all about were either my mom’s boyfriends (most were great guys who adored us, but still…) and my uncles. Of these, Bobby was my favorite. A house contractor, he was always dirty from a job, but he could walk into any fine dining restaurant in the northeast & the owners would welcome him & ask him to take a look at their wine cellars…he was really good at wine, really knew his stuff, was known as a great collector, & had an incredible collection that he’d open up whenever family was around.

I can still remember Easter dinner when I was in college. He served me a wine that was older than I was & asked me what I thought of it & It wasn’t a test or anything. He just wanted to know if I liked it. He just hoped I liked it. Yeah, he taught me that you could appreciate good wine without being some pretentious ass…you could just be this blue-collar all around good guy who understood a nice glass of wine when he tasted one.

When I bought my first rotten & rotted cottage on the cape, Bobby was the contractor who turned this shack into paradise: new floors, cathedral ceiling, enlarged kitchen, deck with a trap door (that you couldn’t tell was a trap) to the basement. He was amazing. I have all these great pictures of everyone in my family standing around in various stages of slacker-tude while Bobby’s in the background working away, raising beams, knocking out walls, measuring windows, fighting with the folks he hired for various jobs that the rest of us were too inept to handle.

Bobby didn’t teach me that men can laugh & laugh all the time, but he confirmed my belief that such happy men existed. & I miss him.

So hubby & I will be heading back to the cape on Wednesday for a wake on Thursday & funeral on Friday. Our inlaws will be happy to have the house to themselves for a few days & they’ve agreed to watch the dog. It’ll be a long & costly trip, but I really need to be there for my mom, my cousin, my sister (who will be a wreck) and myself. Was feeling sorry for myself earlier cause hubby was working on the diss while I was making calls & being sad. But I wasn’t being very reasonable: he has a lot to do for the diss & needs to finalize a lot of stuff since we’ll leave first thing (6am) Wednesday & he’ll need to have all of his ducks in a row to pull this off. He’s a great guy too & I’m damn glad he’s coming with me.

Filed under : General
By bigprof
On July 20, 2009
At 5:35 pm
Comments : 4

Post-fast, pre-inlaws…

No, the fast didn’t kill me. In fact, I learned that 600 calories is a lot or can be if you divy them up the right way. I also realized that I probably obsess about food & worry about not getting enough to the point where I probably have too much food…not a huge surprise, of course, but I’m starting to get some perspective here, I think.

So the day after the fast, I decided to hit the local brew pub while hubby was at the university library…see, it’s okay for me to write at the brew pub up here cause it’s called The Library, so it’s almost like I’m researching. I had a pint, a cup of onion soup, & a side (not an order or an appetizer, but a “small side” as the waitress called it) of sweet potato fries. Not a great lunch, but I enjoyed it & post fast, realized it was more than enough food for a lunch. Then I moved to the coffee shop to continue work & had a medium coffee. Around 5:30, hubby rang my cell. Our friends were heading out with their kids to have pizza on the boat & did we want to go. Sure ’nuff!

On the boat I had four pieces of a medium pizza…don’t freak out…the pizza was one of those round ones they cut into squares, so the biggest square was about 2″ x 2″, but the other three were closer to 1″ x 1″. Again, after the fast, I figured I’d see if just that much pizza would satisfy me & it did…for a while. I really wanted another piece, but since I couldn’t justify eating it cause of hunger or “needing it,” I was able to pass on it. I also had a beer & a margarita on board. Those I’m claiming I “needed,” was very thirsty on the boat. Lovely evening, if a bit cold on the water. Came home & had 8 pretzels with 4 small pieces of cheese. Not a healthy day by any stretch (and no salad or breakfast to speak of), but a day I think my diet may have survived anyway.

Anyway, my inlaws are coming to town tomorrow for a week…today was an insane day of cleaning, doing laundry, shopping, and organizing our lives (pantry, bathroom, closets) but it paid off doing it early. See, normally I’d assume I had until about 5:30 on the day of their arrival to clean…takes a minimum of 8 hours to get here from just about anywhere you’d want to live. But then I realized that if I cleaned today, I could just write or read while waiting for them & not be stressed. Good thing. They called around 6 tonight to let us know they were in Marquette (about 2 hours away), exploring, & spending the night there. They’ll be here in the morning! But we’re ready! All I have to do in the morning is change the sheets on our bed, do a couple of loads of laundry, & write until they arrive.

We’ll be walking a lot while they’re here, so my exercise should be good & food should be okay. But I’m wondering if a fast will be possible. I’d rather not explain that I’m fasting & a lot of our dinner choices will be up to them (although hubby & I have two dinners, most lunches, and breakfasts planned). Argh! I’d love to get another fast in this week!

Okay, periodic posting while they’re in town.

Happy Week Chicks!

Filed under : General
By bigprof
On July 19, 2009
At 9:55 pm
Comments : 3

Fast redux…

Quick break to document last night’s atrocities before I get back to revising this essay that I’d love to see the last of soon…very soon.

Okay, so yesterday I wasn’t great during the day…breakfast out (hubby’s wish) of 2 eggs & toast. Snack was a lot of strawberries. Oh & hubby bought some chocolate covered pretzels (decided not to kill him for that since he was celebrating…but then) that I had 7 of. Ugh. Yeah, I can’t blame him for the decisions I made, but I’d sure like to. Still, those were some good pretzels!

Dinner was a 22 oz beer, caesar salad, gave roll to hubby, 1/2 serving of gratin potatoes, whole serving of veggies, 2 lamb loin chops with creamy cheese on top (very rich), & I split a chocolate souffle (although I let hubby finish my serving cause it was only so-so). Not terrible, not good either, not medium, maybe a mild bad. It wasn’t a whole-hog food-fest, but the calories were certainly high. & we’ll be going back there when my in-laws come to visit next week…need a plan.

Today is my revised semi-fast day. 600 calories & I really should do some walking tonight since I did next to none yesterday! So far:

Breakfast: hb egg (90), handful of blueberries (16), 8 small strawberries (18).

Lunch: late lunch will be small salad with lite dressing (96)

Subtotal =220 (remaining 380)

Dinner: will be mostly veggies [yellow squash (8 oz=53), green beans (10 beans=17), radishes (2 large = 2)] with about 3 oz of London Broil (155)


snack: (didn’t go too far over, but not exactly a smart snack) 4 oz sangria (71) & 20 pretzels (100)


Exercise: 1.5 hour walk with the crazy dog in the misty rain.

Speaking from the front end of this semi-fast, it’s not so bad & it’s not like I can’t eat tomorrow for pity’s sake!

Filed under : General
By bigprof
On July 17, 2009
At 12:31 pm
Comments : 3

Quick! (no, wait, I mean) Fast!

Okay, I’m putting the fast on hold. Hubby finished up the first complete draft of his diss around 1:30 last night & his best friend up here got his final draft done yesterday afternoon, so we’re heading up to Copper Harbor for a nice dinner at the Harbor House (good, rich, German food). I’m going to celebrate…try to stay within my 1200 calories as much as possible, but this will not be my 600-calorie day. We’ll save that til tomorrow….

Exercise is at a minimum today.

Filed under : General
By bigprof
On July 16, 2009
At 9:26 am
Comments : 2

Woo Hoo!

Got an extension on my book review until the end of the month. So…a responsible academic would get right back into the book & get to work. But then you already know where this is going next…

So…a bit of lovely blog reading to catch up, a long walk, a lot of house cleaning, & then I’ll get right back into that book…you betcha!

Okay, I’m off to see what ya’ll have been up to this past week!

Update: almost caught up on my blog reading…ya’ll been busy! Busy losing, busy lifting, busy traveling, busy making trouble. House isn’t clean, but it’s tidier than when I arrived & that’s a start. & I even had time to make a quiche, clean/freeze strawberries to make into jam when hubby’s less busy, and begin organizing all the research I gathered last week. Phew! Feels good to accomplish something & feels really good not to have to leave for another long road trip. Nice to be home.

Breakfast: HB egg (90)
Lunch: 1/2 serving leftover pasta (300)
Snack: 8 medium strawberries (30)
Subtotal: 420 calories
Dinner: will be quiche lorraine (1/6 total = 316), salad (96)
Subtotal: 832 (368 remaining)

Snack: 20 pretzels (100) & 4 oz sangria (71)
Exercise: 1 hour & 10 min walk in morning; 25-min walk in evening

Tomorrow is my first fasting day…looking at this list, I can see it will be a day filled with veggies, some berries, and an egg or two to fill me up. A little nervous about dropping down to 600 calories…isn’t that silly? It’s not like it’s forever, only for a day.

Filed under : General
By bigprof
On July 15, 2009
At 9:23 am
Comments : 3

I was told there’d be no math with this diet…

Got a loverly cortizone shot at the doctor’s yesterday & he’s got me taking 1800 mg of ibuprofen a day now (up from my self-medicating 800 mg). This is how we’re approaching the joint pain, which is, it seems, the rheumatoid arthritis back again. I sort of knew it…it’s been in/out of remission since I was 16, & it’s hard to ignore the crazy swelling & pain (although that’s what I did during my 20+ years uninsured), but I was really hoping all that was the fault of my lazy metabolism cause there’s a real treatment for that. Not much beyond major ibuprofen & hoping for another remission to do for the RA.

He’s keeping me on the metabolism meds, since it’s in a subclinical range, but I don’t have to go back for two months, when I’m hoping the swelling will be way down, I’ll be back running, and I’ll have lost some serious weight. That stuff I can control…what the blood work shows may be in someone else’s hands.

He also suggested (again) that I try a fast every week…actually, he suggested two semi-fasts a week. Last time he recommended one 800-calorie day a week. This time he says two 600-calorie days. Given that I’m walking 1.5-2 hours a day, he figures my problem is calories. I figure my problem is mainly fruit & nuts (too much of both). So…calorie counting for me. Oh joy! There’s little I hate more than measuring & counting & adding up calories.

I need to focus more on veggies & lean proteins. Lunch needs to be a salad every day with maybe some extra green veggies thrown in if I’m especially hungry. I need to keep hard boiled eggs on hand since those are hugely filling. I also need to cut out all eating after 8:00 (up here the sun doesn’t even think about setting until 10, so we tend to eat late, walk late, get to sleep late)…then make certain I have breakfast so my metabolism is firing steady all day long.

& back to food recording here now that my insane travels are over. Food recording complete with calorie counting. Argh

Okay, today I need to get this stupid book review finished (it’s technically due tomorrow), so if I’m going to get my long walk in, I better head out now.

Breakfast: kashi (190), skim milk (45), blueberries (65) = 300

Snack: (so much for cutting down on fruit…it’s strawberry season in the UP!) 5 medium-sized strawberries after my walk (19)

Lunch: (eggs are boiling) will be salad (lettuce = 20) with egg (90), grape tomatoes (24), radish (2), & asparagus (13), lite Paul Newman dressing 1 capfull (30). (179 total)

Subtotal 1200-498=702

Dinner:Ham (91), Peas (44), pasta (363), squash (20), half/half (78), parm cheese (28) = 624

Snack: Hb egg (90)

Total = 1212

Exercise: 1 hr & 35-min walk in morning; 30-min walk in evening.

Happy day Chicks!

Filed under : General
By bigprof
On July 14, 2009
At 10:02 am
Comments : 3

How nice…

to be back with hubby & dog tomorrow night, to be back to a regular work schedule, to have time to read something fun (like blogs) other than 100-year old news print, to be back to my food & exercise routine.

Terrified to step on the scale. I walked a lot during my time in IL, but my food wasn’t great. Doctor’s appointment tomorrow…we’ll see what my weight is then, when I have no choice & must step on the scale.

For now, I hit my food goal today, took a 20-min walk around campus in the morning. Back at home, I was pulling into the garage when I noticed the weeds growing between the cracks in front of the garage. So I tossed my keys on the front steps & pulled those weeds, which drew my attention to the weeds in the small front beds & while I’m at it, I hit the major garden in the middle of the front yard. 45-minutes later…& I’ve had a little bit of a workout.

After dinner I forced myself outside for a 30-minute walk, which turned into an hour-long walk. Helped that I’m sort of mentally drained today, so I got lost big time in my own neighborhood. Yay! More stars to make up for my zero stars yesterday…road tripping up from Chicago & I was beat when I got home.

Food today (good, but too much of a good thing):

Breakfast: 6 plump blackberries & a handful of blueberries
Lunch: 6 grilled asparagus, 1/3 cup tri-color orzo salad, handful of blueberries
Snack: 6 whole wheat crackers with 1 oz smoked gouda
Snack #2 (& why I didn’t just have dinner at this time is a mystery): 1 cup in-shell peanuts
Dinner: salad with crumble bleu, 4 oz flank steak, small biscuit with 1 teaspoon butter
Snack #3: beer

Hey, Hey, Hey…I’m almost back…another day or two to catch up with everyone & I’ll feel like I never left!

Filed under : General
By bigprof
On July 12, 2009
At 6:25 pm
Comments : 2

Just gonna take the lead from…

the people here who I count on the most.

Today, that means looking on the bright side. The research is going well. My relationship with fellow researcher is strained, I knew it would be. So…bygones. Truth is I couldn’t gather the amount of material we’re finding alone…or I could, but it’d take a month or more to do it alone. So…no.

Bright side also means that I’ve driven my car only once since Monday…to Whole Foods last night to get a lovely spinach pie, grilled asparagus, and blackberries (incredible) for dinner & snacky food. Otherwise, where I’ve needed to go, my feet have taken me & I’ve needed to go to a bunch of different sites for research over this past week. I’m all over this town!

So…food is not good. No it is not! It isn’t terrible either & I’ve obeyed some strict rules about leaving half the food (or more) on my plate at each meal. But I’ve also managed to work exercise into a research schedule that would otherwise involve nothing more than sitting very still & inhaling some very old newsprint dust.

& we’re on schedule with our gathering of materials from the various archives & at the mercy, tomorrow, of these various sites with their own schedules. This means that tomorrow morning I’ll get to read blogs before breakfast, walk to the car, then to kinkos to make copies of our sources, then the car goes back to the garage & I’ll be walking again to the Historical Society. In other words, the morning is mine & there’ll be no crazy squinting through decades worth of newsprint…in the morning, at least.

At least, that’s the plan for now…could change if I have to make a mad dash to a library in the middle of the state to see some old journals that I can’t see on Saturday since the university library will be closed on Saturday (thank you, education budget cuts!). It’s complicated, but it’ll work out. Somehow. Okay, odds are darn good I’ll have to drive down to mid-state on Saturday, spend the night there, hit the library on Sunday (only between 1-5), and drive back to detroit (7.5 hours) that evening…only to then hit the doctor on Monday before driving the 9.5 hours back to the UP. Sucks…yes. But BRIGHT SIDE! It’ll all be over in a matter of days & I’ll be back in the arms of hubby & the beautiful (and restful) UP.

Filed under : General
By bigprof
On July 9, 2009
At 9:00 pm
Comments : 3

Salad good, beer bad

These are words I need to learn to live by!

The salad was very good at dinner last night & I’m glad I ordered it instead of the dozens of really tempting & fattening offerings on the menu. But I also had 2 beers & fries with lunch. So…to recap…my only exercise has been walking around the town at a leisurely pace (although, altogether these walks add up to just over 1.5 hours of my day) & I’m making bad choices with food.

So the plan for today is more walking, which should be easy to do since in addition to my walks today, we’re taking the L to the Cubs game tonight, so there’ll be plenty of walking to the game. Also, I need to start making better choices at least until the game when, I suspect, I’ll end up eating a hotdog if we don’t get dinner first.

Gee, interesting how that plan sounds so much like NOT A PLAN AT ALL! Okay, I’m not planning today: today I’m winging it & making good choices as I go.

Happy Day [email protected]

Filed under : General
By bigprof
On July 7, 2009
At 6:27 am
Comments : 3