white-mountains.JPG  Here’s a picture from out drive yesterday.  Sure do wish it showed the scale.  It looks like a little stream in the distance but we were on a lookout way up above it on the cliffs.

I just want to take a few minutes to blog and drink my coffee and then I’ve got to get everyone up and moving.  We’re so far behind.  I’m hoping to get Petrified Forest, Meteor Crater, and the Grand Canyon done today.  I told Steven we wouldn’t have time to see the Grand Canyon on this trip but then I relented and told him we’d see it but only for one day.  Now we have two days to make up and I’m hoping we can just skim the edge of it enough so that he can say he saw it and get back on the road.

I didn’t get much exercise yesterday but I did take a short hiking/climbing trail for about a mile in Saguaro National Park yesterday.  Hopefully, another day or two and we’ll be in Vegas and I can get more exercise.

My men eat gross stuff.  We went to the grocery when we got here yesterday and I picked up a bag of frozen ravioli and some prepared pasta sauce.  DH grabbed a big package of hamburger and a package of spaghetti and DS found some steaks reduced for quick sale, french bread, and potatoes.  I had ravioli (9 pieces have 300 calories) and sauce (another 100 cals).  DH went with my ravioli but also cooked up a skillet full of meatballs and a pan of spaghetti.  I told him if he made a mess he had to clean it up because I HATE cleaning up grease.  DH wanted to grill steaks and I told him the same thing.  He said, “How hard can it be to clean a George Foreman grill?”  The boys joined me with ravioli and sauce but added lots of buttered bread to it and a couple of DH’s meatballs.  DH thinks he cleaned up his mess but I see grease spatter on the mirror behind the stove and his idea of cleaning the stove is just to wipe it down.  The George Foreman was abandoned outside and still hasn’t been cleaned.  I’m going to get the guys up in a minute and put them to work.  An RV is not the place to make a big meal and dirty up a bunch of pots and pans.  Besides the mess, I’m going to have to say something to DS about his eating habits.  I know he’s 38 years old but I can’t believe the garbage he eats!  Last night, he had buttered bread, baked potatoes with butter, and two huge steaks.  I’m not kidding you, these steaks looked more like roasts than steaks and he ate two of them.  He eats from the time he gets up till the time he goes to bed and needs to lose about 150 pounds.  He’s diabetic and is tired almost all the time.  I’m going to have to wait till the time is right and say something to him.

Right now, however, I’m going to get my shower and get everybody moving!

saguaro3.JPGsaguaro2.JPGsaguaro1.JPGsaguaro.JPGWe are so far behind it ain’t even funny!  We left the RV park on Friday at 11:00 and moved over to Walmart to wait for DH to get his dental work finished.  I could not believe it when he called at 6:00 p.m. Friday evening and said they were going to have to remake his bridge.  In the process of adjusting the bite, the dentist drilled all the way through the surface of the crown.  Having worked in the dental field 15 years prior to becoming a teacher, I know that this happens fairly often.  I also know that it means a wait of another four or five days to have the lab remake the bridge.  I have to give them credit, the lab technician came to the dental office Friday evening and took new impressions and said he would work on Saturday to remake it.  The dental office also opened on Saturday to cement it.  Still, it meant another day of boondocking in Walmart’s parking lot.  He finally got finished about 6:00 p.m. Saturday evening and we hit the road. 

Drove for about 5 or 6 hours and pulled over in Tucson around midnight for another night of boondocking.  This morning we got up and spent about three hours in Saguaro National Park.  That was one of the things Andrew really wanted to see and he loved it.  From Tucson, we headed North toward Petrified Forest.  It was supposed to be a 5 hour drive but I don’t think Mapquest is talking about a behemoth like Manny pulling a car through the White Mountains and Globe, Arizona.  The drive alternated between Manny crawling up the mountains at 25 m.p.h and hurtling down the other side at speeds that made me so nervous I had to go back in the bedroom and read a book.  I was freaking out!  Hairpin curves and 8% slopes that went on and on and all these cliffs and dropoffs just a few feet from the edge of the road.  I kept telling DS to slow down and he kept telling me he couldn’t ride the brakes because they’d overheat.  I remember some pretty scary roads up around Escalante and Mount Zion but I forgot about the ones around this area.  Anyway, we made it to the Petrified Forest area around 7:00 p.m. and the park closes at 6:00 so we pulled over for the night in a KOA campground.  The plan is to rip through Petrified Forest early tomorrow morning, run down the road to Meteor Crater and then shave a day off the Grand Canyon.  That way we’ll make up at least one day of the two we’re behind.

DH left for the Wyndham Hotel 30 minutes ago to be picked up by Hector. I told him to hang around the dental office for at least an hour or two to make sure his new bridges feel good before he leaves but he’s a man and you know how they are. “Feels a little bit high but I’ll get used to it.” Probably wait till we’re in the middle of the Mojave Desert and say, “You know, this bridge just doesn’t feel right.”

Mr. Scale is showing me 175 this morning and I can live with that. Don’t know how much exercise I’ll get since we’re going to be on the road all day. As soon as DH gets back, we’re driving 4 1/2 hours to Tucson to the Saguaro National Park. Tucson has lots of free places to Boondock so we probably won’t stay in an RV park tonight and I won’t have wifi. After we leave Tucson, we’re driving 5 hours to Petrified Forest tomorrow and then we’re spending the night another hour up the road at Meteor Crater RV park but I don’t know if they have wifi either.

Right now, I need to get the George Foreman disassembled and stowed, get the stuff on the counters all put in it’s place and get Manny ready to roll.

4:30 – Estoy tan frustrado con esta crap sobre Donnie del trabajo dental. Quiero a moverse. Ya hemos pasado una semana de nuestras vacaciones en esta mierda! Loosely translated:

Me este sicko of all the dentista crappola! Me husbandito esta still not backo from El Dentista y Sistero Pat is el sicko of waiting! Muy Mucho sicko de El Paso!

It seems that missing our appointment on Monday because of the water going out made the lab run behind and DH’s bridge wasn’t ready.  They rescheduled him for 3:00 p.m. and the lab was scrambling to get it finished on time.  He called at 4:00 and said the lab said they’d have it ready by 5:30.  Guess that’s 3:00 in Mexicano Siesta Time!  It’s 6:00 now and we’re going to be driving till midnight to get to Tucson.  Please let me be patient.  DH has needed this for a long time.


Friday Menu

It’s so quiet.  All the guys are still sleeping although I’ve been up for an hour.  We’re going to drive up to White Sands today.  I’ve been there before and I think the boys will love it.  Towering dunes of snow white sand.  It’s only 1 1/2 hours from where we are so I think I’ll let everyone sleep for a while and just enjoy the quiet with a cup of Gevalia.  I decided I deserved a good cup of coffee this morning.

I decided to start trying to keep track of exercise and calories even though we’re on vacation.  I was thinking about it last night when I went to bed and I don’t know what I ate yesterday.  I must have eaten more than what I’m thinking because the only thing I remember is a small amount of guacamole before I threw it out with about 6 or 7 tortilla strips.  DH and the boys fixed hamburgers on the grill but I told them I’d nuke a veggie burger and I never got around to it.  I must have eaten something!  I know I didn’t eat breakfast and then we went to Mexico and I didn’t eat anything over there.  We got back and I tried to make guacamole and then I got kind of irritated with DS and went to bed around 10:00.  Promise I’ll do better today.  In fact, I’m going to fix a bowl of Kashi Go Lean and soymilk as soon as I finish this entry.

DS was very negative and irritating yesterday.  Hope he’s in a better mood today.  I did take him down a few notches before I went to bed so let’s hope it sunk in.  I honestly don’t think he slept very well the night before last.  He decided to sleep on the new twin size airbed and woke up with a killer backache. 

Just weighed myself.  Mr. Scale is telling me 174.5.  I should be really happy about that but I think it just means I didn’t eat yesterday.  We’ll see if it stays there after today.  Okay, I’m going to get some Kashi!

7:00 – I DO NOT have to worry about whether or not I ate today.  I definitely ate!  We went to White Sands and climbed around on the dunes for a couple of hours.  My calves were screaming for mercy!  It was 97 degrees and the white sand just reflected the heat right back atcha!  The light was so bright, reflecting off that white sand that I couldn’t take my sunglasses off for even a minute.  Here’s a picture of DH climbing up a dune.  You’ll notice that I’m looking down on him.  That means I’d already made it to the top!  He’s been brought to his knees (hee hee!).  Also a picture of the twin grandson’s Andrew and Steven.  I didn’t get a good picture of Darryl today but his mood was MUCH better.


After playing on the dunes, we were all starving and went to a Golden Corral in Alamogordo and I ate a little dab of potato salad, some beets, a fried chicken breast, some cabbage, part of another fried chicken breast, a roll, 2 cups of chicken noodle soup, and a cup of soft serve ice cream.  Any guess on the calories on that feast?  I’ve convinced myself that I worked it off climbing those dunes and sweating buckets but I think I’m done eating for today.  Maybe a little fruit for dinner.  We went by an Albertson’s grocery the other day and they had pineapples 10 for $10.  I was shocked at the low price and bought five of them.  I didn’t notice until we were headed out the door that it was 10 lbs. for $10 so I think I bought about $20 worth of pineapple.  We’ve also picked up some pretty good watermelon and tomatoes at a roadside stand.

9:00 The Good, The Bad, and The Ugly

We’re leaving El Paso tomorrow so I’m trying to get Manny cleaned up and all the laundry done.  Let’s recount the day:

The Good – I put the clothes in the dryer and swam laps for 45 minutes while I waited for them.  Not real hard swimming but enough to work off some calories.

The Bad – Lunch.  Need I say more?

The Ugly – The cashier at Golden Corral rang us up as three adults and two senior citizens. Stupid cow…


Thursday Menu

Kashi Go Lean Crunch (200)
Silk Light Soymilk (40)


Border Jumper

sunset.JPGTonight’s Sunset

Buenos días, flaca, poco amigos!

We’re going to be taking the Border Jumper Trolley over to Juarez today to do a little shopping.  The trolley costs $12.50 per day per person and that gives you a wrist band that lets you hop on and off as many times as you wish for the day.  It leaves the convention center every hour and makes 10 different stops in Juarez at the most popular tourist destinations.  You can hop off at one of interest and shop and then hop on the next trolley an hour later and continue on your way.  It runs from 10:00 to 4:00 and I can’t seem to get anyone out of bed this morning!  As DH put it, “There’s no rush.  How much shopping can you do anyway?”  Well, DUH!  I can do a LOT of shopping!

I did something disturbing last night.  Woke up in the middle of the night, went in the kitchen and got some sliced Cinnamon Butter Struesel Cake and ate two slices.  I just checked and it’s 140 calories per slice.  The thing is, I don’t know why I did it.  I bought the Cinnamon cake because I don’t particularly care for it but the boys do.  So here I am, at 2:00 a.m. getting up and eating two slices when I’m not even hungry and don’t even like it very much.  What’s with that?  As I’ve said a kazillion times, I’m not looking at this as a diet so much as a way of life and I can accept when something is yummy and I make a conscious decision to eat some of it while keeping the calorie count in mind.  That’s acceptable and even normal but eating something in the middle of the night that I don’t even want is not.  I need to keep that kind of behavior under control.

Okay, it’s 8:45 here and I’m going to try to rouse the guys!

10:15 – Damn!  I’m still trying to get these guys up!  You’d think vacuuming around them, banging doors and washing dishes would make them miserable enough to get up but they just roll over and go back to sleep.  Guess I’m going to have to get vicious.

5:15 – It seems jumping the border isn’t as easy as it used to be.  We went down to the convention center to buy our passes for the Border Jumper only to find out that it wasn’t running today.  They said tourism is WAY down because of the recent problems in Juarez and they don’t run it unless they have at least ten people at noon.  They don’t even start till then.  Since they didn’t have ten people today, they weren’t running it.  Of course, if we were the kind of people who gave up easily, we wouldn’t be losing weight and exercising, would we, girls?  So we looked for another way and finally decided to park the car on the US side, walk over the bridge, and take a cab to the Marketplace.  That wasn’t too difficult.  The walk over the bridge was only about 1/2 mile but it was muy caliente!  105 degrees!  The cab drivers were all clammoring for our dinero but we chose a nice grandfatherly type who said he would drive us to the marketplace for $6.00 so we went with him.  My men are not small, they’re all over 6’2″ and we were pretty tight in Coco’s old cab, a small sedan.  He was friendly and teased the grandson’s about finding wives for them and had them both blushing profusely by the time we arrived.  He introduced us to his nephew, Juan, who works at the marketplace and told us Juan would call him to pick us up when we were ready to go.  Shopping was fun and annoying at the same time.  I don’t really like haggling but I’m not too bad at it.  I wound up buying a turquoise and silver ring for $12.00, a little silver pinkie ring for $5.00, a very large ceramic ristra for $18.00, a fabulous hand painted platter for $8.00, a beautiful cup and salt and pepper shakers for $7.00, a really nice silver necklace for $14.00, a brightly colored ceramic macaw to hang in my kitchen for $12.00 and a ceramic red pepper ristra for $6.00.  The men all loaded up on souvenirs as well and then we headed out to the patio to find Juan.  We found a seat and ordered “real” Mexican cokes from Juan (if you’ve never had them, you’re missing a treat.  The Coca Colas in Mexico are still made with real cane sugar instead of corn syrup.) Juan brought us chips and salsa and guacamole and said he would call Coco.  I have no desire to be a victim of Montezuma’s Revenge so I passed on the chips and salsa but the guacamole looked so good I decided to make some for dinner tonight.  We waited about 20 minutes and then Juan came back and said Coco must have gone home but he would find us another cab for the same price.  He rounded one up and told me “Nice lady, you pay $6.00.  No more!  Hold your purse tight when you walk on the bridge and don’t talk to no one.”  Good Advice, thank you, Juan!  This cab was even smaller than Coco’s and we were crammed in it so tight I figured we would all fall out as soon as the door was opened.  The driver took us back to the Santa Fe Bridge so we could walk back across the border and then told me the fare would be $15.00.  I told him that it would be $7.00.  He said $12.00 and I handed him $6.00 and walked away as he muttered about not making any money and having to feed his family.  We walked back over the bridge and through customs and I was glad to see my big white car with air conditioning waiting for us in the border parking lot.  We got back to the RV and I couldn’t wait to take a hot bath.  I swear, I was so dirty and sweaty the water looked like it had pond scum and I had to scrub the tub and then take a shower after my bath just to feel human again.  It ain’t easy getting a good buy!  Only the strong survive!!!

Cute…DH just got back from the store.  I use chap stick a lot and he found chap stick in Reeses Peanut Butter Scent and Mounds!  Fun!

7:30 – I love my hubby.  I really do!  He tries so hard to please me.  I told him to look for avocados that were black but still firm.  Told him not to get the green ones or the mushy ones.  He brought me black avocados that are hard as rocks.  Said he looked forever to find the right ones.  I just about bent the knife peeling them and then the blender can’t even mash them.  So much for guacamole.  It’s too fattening anyway.  Guess I’ll throw some veggie burgers on the George Foreman.

That would be me.  All decked out in yellow walking shorts, a sleeveless yellow top (let those underarms flap in the breeze!) and yellow sandals.  I drug Mr. Scale out of the closet this morning and he’s showing me 176 fully dressed.  Now, we’re off to meet Hector for another episode of Las Dentistas!

7:45 – I’m tired!  Thought I’d fix a nice cold dinner tonight with a smorgasbord of easy stuff and it damn near did me in!  I had four or five different kinds of cheese, peaches, cantelope, watermelon, grape tomatoes, crackers, bagels with cream cheese, sliced ham and turkey, challah bread, sliced apples, fresh pineapple, and summer rolls with grilled chicken.  WHY am I so exhausted?  It seems like it took forever to peel and slice fruit, veggies, grill chicken, and julienne all the veggies for summer rolls.  Of course, the most time consuming thing was soaking the rice wrappers, filling them, and rolling them up.  To top it all off, they were disappearing faster than I could roll them.  I don’t know why it took so long and took so much out of me. 

So, what happened today?  We went across the border to the dental clinic and I had my teeth cleaning and fillings done.  DH has his bridge preps done and we were back across the border by noon.  Not bad!  We called DS to pick us up but he and the boys were in New Mexico at the War Eagles Air Museum so we told them we’d get some lunch and they could take their time.  We went to the restaurant and the Wyndham Hotel and I ordered the luncheon special of soup of the day and mexican dinner of sliced beef topped with red and green peppers in a tomato sauce accompanied with refried beans, rice, and a cheese enchilada.  It was terrible.  The beef tasted like it was leftover roast beef from last night’s dinner that had been sliced and nuked and then topped with some wimpy insipid sauce.  It was tough and dry and had no flavor at all.  I didn’t want the beans or rice but I ate the soup and enchilada.  I told the waitress the beef was terrible and she apologized but that was as far as it went.  This was a nice hotel and a nice restaurant and I was really disappointed.  Should have told them I wasn’t paying $14.95 for food that was inedible but I just let it go.

We walked across the street to view the largest bronze equestrian statue in the world and it was a thing of beauty!  DS and the twins showed up to pick us up and then we went to the Border Patrol Museum and the Museum of Archeology.  Here’s a pic of DS and the twins in front of the statue.


A stop at the grocery and we came back to the RV.  It was a wreck because the boys didn’t do anything after DH and I left this morning so I cleaned it and fixed dinner and that’s where I am.

or something like that…Got up early this morning and had DS drive us over to the Wyndham Hotel for pickup to go across the border to the dental clinic.  Hector showed up, handsome, well dressed, well spoken and quite personable.  He drove us across the border to the dental clinic where Donnie and I had appointments. 

The clinic was very nice.  Very modern and clean and the dentists were all Americans and the staff were all bilingual.  Juarez, the city, is a different matter.  Very dirty, junk cars, graffiti, etc.  The clinic was surrounded by a high concrete wall and a metal gate.  On top of that, all the windows and doors had decorative but very utilitarian bars.  Once inside, they locked the doors behind us to keep us safe and secure.  Interesting…

I planned on having my teeth cleaned and whitened.  After the exam, the dentist told me about the whitening process and I decided not to have it done.  He said it makes your teeth really porous for the first month after the process and you have to avoid coffee, tea, cigarettes, cherries, blueberries, cola, etc.  Anything that stains because the teeth are so porous after the process that they’ll pick up stains really easily and they’re really difficult to get rid of if you get them when your enamel has been etched by the chemicals used in the whitening process.  Well, hey!  I was just doing it for the heck of it anyway.  So, I decided since I didn’t really need it, I wouldn’t risk it.  I do need two fillings and a cleaning, however, so I thought I’d go ahead and get that done.  They started cleaning my teeth and 15 minutes later, the water went out for the entire block.  They use bottled water for the cleaning and handpieces but the vacuum system uses city water.  They had massive panic in the office because it seems that the phones go out all the time but the water going out is really unusual.  They sent us out to the waiting room where we chatted with a half dozen other americanos for three hours and then they decided to call Hector to take us all back over the border and pick us up again tomorrow.  You can drive straight across from the US to Mexico but coming back in is a lot more involved.  The line of cars usually takes anywhere from an hour to three hours to cross over.  We sat in the van and got well acquainted with our fellow patients.  A young couple getting married next month that flew in from Houston to have their teeth whitened for the wedding and for him to have a bridge and a couple of crowns before the wedding.  An older gentleman who needed “a whole bunch” of work and couldn’t afford the prices in the US and a chatty middle-aged court interpretor who lives in El Paso and has all her dental work done at the clinic because she doesn’t have insurance and said she’s always had it done across the border.  As the van approached the front of the line, we all got off and walked through the customs area while Hector drove the van through the line and then picked us up on the other side of the bridge.  Quite an adventure!  And the neat thing?  We get to do it all again tomorrow!

Now, you guys know how I don’t like breakfast but I didn’t get anything to eat from dinner last night until about 4:30 when DS picked us up and said he wanted to show us “a really neat little Mexican restaurant” he found.  I really wasn’t thinking about food when I went over into Mexico this morning but I certainly wasn’t leaving the dental clinic and wandering around Juarez and I wouldn’t have eaten anything they had even if I could so I was starving!  I ordered the fajita platter for two for $7.99 for DH and I and we got a huge serving of steak strips, six warm flour tortillas, beans, rice, guacamole, sour cream, and a topping bar that had all kinds of sauces, lettuce, tomato, jalapenos, etc.  I ate two tortillas with beef and toppings but I didn’t use the queso sauce or any kind of cheese.  Gave DH the beans and rice so I guess I did pretty good.  Tomorrow, I’m packing a lunch for us before we cross the border.

Now I’m finally back at the RV and I’m heading to the pool!

8:00 – That glorious sunset is beginning.  I don’t think I’m going to climb up on the RV tonight but will watch it from the table here in the courtyard instead. 

I guess DH and I will spend another day at the clinic tomorrow so I’m going to plan out the day for Andrew, Steven, and Darryl tomorrow.  The boys want to see the War Eagles Air Museum that has a bunch or restored planes. The Museum is dedicated to collecting, restoring, and displaying historic aircraft of the World War II and Korean Conflict eras.   It’s located in Santa Teresa, New Mexico but it’s only about 50 miles away.  As soon as DS drops DH and I off, he can take the boys out for pancakes, which they love, and then they can head to the museum.  When they get back, probably around noon, they can go to the Border Patrol Museum and the adjacent Archeology Museum.  That ought to keep them busy till DH and I get finished and back across the border.

I don’t feel like cooking so I just boiled a bag of shrimp and mixed up some seafood sauce to go with them.  No calories to speak of but the cholesterol isn’t that great.  I have a Mickey D’s fruit and yogurt parfait for dessert. 

10:30 – One of those wonderful, nature experiences!  Ever been in the desert during a wind storm?  They come in the evening when the surface air cools but the heat from the ground rises and the clash creates dust devils and wind storms complete with thunder and lightening but no rain.  We had one this evening.  I stepped outside to enoy it in a light, flowing sundress and the wind was warm and wrapped my dress around my calves.  I walked to the end of the RV park, away from all the people and RVs, and found that if I walked up against the concrete wall that surrounds the park, I could look down on the lights of Juarez and see the lightening flashing over the city.  For such an ugly town, it sure is beautiful after dark.

I’m really dating myself…Marty Robbins singing El Paso?  That was one of my Dad’s favorite songs so I grew up hearing it a lot.

Finally got a chance to relax.  We’ve been driving like crazy to get here.  Got to Carlsbad just in time to see the bats yesterday evening.  That’s always so cool!  They all start exiting the cave at the same time and it’s just one of those things you have to see to believe.  Video and digital cameras are not allowed which doesn’t make any sense at all to me but that’s the way it is so we have to live with it.

After the bat show, we were planning to pull over at a Walmart in Carlsbad and boondock but DS wasn’t tired at all so we decided to move on down the road a few miles.  After a few miles, we went a few more, and pretty soon we were so close to El Paso, we just decided to go the rest of the way.  Pulled in Port Walmart in El Paso around midnight last night and I finally got some sleep.

We got up this morning and went in Walmart to do some shopping.  Picked up a few groceries and then headed to Mission RV Park which is where we’ll have Manny resting for a few days.  I’m not nuts about this RV park.  It has a nice pool and spa and wifi but we’re paying an extra $3.00 per day for 50 amp service and an extra $3.00 per day for more than two people (never heard of that in an RV park) so we’re paying $44.00 per day to sit in what’s essentially a big parking lot.  You can tell from the picture that it’s not a very pretty place.

I have no idea how many calories I consumed yesterday.  It was one of those “stuck in the RV all day long” days where we chewed up the miles (1,000 or so) and I read a book and tried to tune out.  I didn’t eat any junk.  I know that much but I was so tired from lack of sleep, I was a little out of it for most of the day.  Yesterday was probably the most grueling of the entire trip and I’m glad it’s out of the way.

I just climbed down from the roof of the RV where I climbed up the ladder with a Moosehead beer and sat and watched the sunset.  Sunsets are so vivid out west.  I love watching them.  I’m not thrilled about watching it through a Chevron sign but it was still beautiful. 


Came in and opened another beer and started making summer rolls for dinner.  I used rice wrappers and filled them with Cajun grilled chicken breast, cucumber, julienned carrots, cilantro, avacado, and romaine lettuce.  Dipped them in hot chili sauce and they’re I’m munching one right now.  Yummy!

Now I’m going to sign off of here and see what my bloggie friends have been up to!

Only have a couple minutes while DS goes in to get a map of Texas.  Going to paste what I wrote yesterday and today.

Hey, Little Chicklets!

It’s 10:00 a.m. and we’re rolling along through
Arkansas (I think…).  We got a late start yesterday but then, that’s always the case.  As I said before, DH did not pack on Thursday and even though I did most of it for him, he still had to spend some time on it when he got home from work.  Add to that, getting my car on the dolly, and gassing up the RV and we didn’t hit the road till 5:30.  I had planned on us driving 8 ½ hours yesterday and we did but we had to gas up a couple of times (It’s cheaper out here so we topped it off twice) and we stopped so the guys could get food (smile).  Andrew and Steven went back in the bedroom and went to sleep shortly after we left.  DH hit the sack about 10:00 p.m. and DS drove till 4:30 a.m.  I stayed up and kept him company because I didn’t think he got enough sleep yesterday even though he said he did.  Anyway, he was popping those Super Dooper Caffeine pills that they have at truck stops and I wasn’t comfortable with that.  I did okay with food.  Got a salad at Mickey D’s but then I found myself mindlessly chomping on a fried chicken breast, potato wedges and a roll about 2:00 a.m.  Recoiled in horror!  It wasn’t even good (except the crispy, crunchy skin on the chicken breast) and threw it out.  We finally pulled over at a Wal-Mart and I woke up Andrew and Steven and ran them out of the bedroom and into their own beds.  Ten minutes later, they were wide awake and playing Monopoly. 


At 7:30 a.m. DH was making coffee and Andrew was tapping me on the shoulder and telling me to get up.  I ran him off but then Steven was at it 15 minutes later saying DH needed me to get up and tell him where we needed to go.  I would have liked to tell him where to go but the boys were listening so I behaved myself.   Now Darryl’s up and DH is driving and we’re close to
Texarkana. It looks like I made a mistake somewhere.  Probably in the rush to redo the entire vacation routing to accommodate DH’s dental appointments.  Anyway, I’m not sure we’re going to make it to
Carlsbad early enough to catch the bat flight and I really wanted the boys to witness it.  Okay, Let’s see what I can do about calories:


June 20 – Dinner Mickey D’s salad with grilled chicken (350?)

Late night (morning) binge (500)


June 21 – Breakfast Mickey D’s fruit and yogurt parfait (150)


Thought I’d be able to connect to wifi whenever we pulled over for gas but DH and DS are gassing up at those big travel plazas (Flying Dutchman, Loves, TA) and they kind of sit off to themselves in the middle of nowhere so I can’t get a free connection.  Guess I’ll cut and paste later.

Oops!  He’s already back!


I would have bet money that DH was going to call in sick this morning.  He didn’t pack his clothes yesterday and I kept nagging him to get it done.  His only response was “Don’t worry, I’ll take care of it.”  He knows we’re pulling out as soon as he walks in from work this afternoon and yet, he didn’t get ready.  I know that this is because he thought he was going to call in sick today and pack his stuff this morning.  However, when his alarm went off, your’s truly leaned over and whispered in his ear in my sexiest, sultry voice, “Don’t even think about calling in sick!”  His job is such that he can miss work just about anytime he wants but he only gets ten paid sick days a year and he’s already used all of them for this year.  Anytime he takes a sick day between now and September, he’s just throwing money out the window and I don’t like it when he throws money out the window.  Especially when he starts 3 1/2 weeks of vacation tomorrow.

I set the sprinklers out yesterday afternoon and gave everything a good soaking.  Then I got out the sprayer and gave all the flower beds a good dose of Miracle Grow.  It was a beautiful, cloudless day but my acts were pretty much guaranteed to bring on the rain…and they did.  It’s rained buckets since yesterday evening and it’s still coming down.

Okay, so here’s the plan.  Mr. Scale is showing me 177 this morning.  (Bastard).  I’m going to get my workout done and then finish packing.  We’re supposed to head out as soon as DH gets home around 4:00 and drive 8 1/2 hours this evening which should bring us around Little Rock, Arkansas.  There’s a Super Walmart there that allows boondocking so we’ll pull over around 1:00 a.m. and get a good night’s sleep before continuing tomorrow.  We need to get another ten hours of driving done on Saturday and we should be able to pull into Carlsbad, New Mexico around 6:00 or 7:00 tomorrow evening in time to see the bat flight.  If you’ve never seen this phenomenon, it’s pretty cool!  Just like clockwork, hundreds of thousands of bats leave the cave at the same time.  At times, it looks like a swirling black tornado emerging from the cave.  Following the bat flight, we’re heading to a Walmart in Carlsbad for another night of boondocking.  Sunday morning we’ll have another three hour drive to get to El Paso, Texas where we’re staying in a really nice RV park for five days while DH gets dental work done.  They have wifi so I shouldn’t have any problem blogging while we’re there.  Don’t know how often I’ll be able to connect tonight or tomorrow.  It depends on when and if I can pick up a signal.

Okay, I’ve been up long enough to get some caffeine in my system so I guess I should get my workout done.  Maybe the rain will stop by the time I finish.  The weather forecast says it’s clear out there with just a chance of a rain shower.  They need to look out the window.

10:20 – Finished the treadmill.  I’m going to sit here and blog for a few minutes while I cool off.  I only went up the incline to 8% today.  I know I could have pushed myself the rest of the way but I promised myself I’d quit at 8% and I did.  Shaved 15 minutes off the workout.  Well, not really, because I was moving with Rob Thomas and Santana to “Smooth” when I got to the end and if any of you ladies can cut that off in the middle, you’re a better woman than I am.  Kept going to 78 minutes so Rob and Carlos wouldn’t get their feelings hurt.  I’ve already forgotten the calorie count.  I think it was around 450 and the mileage was 3.8.

10:50 – Went to the bathroom to take my shower and Mr. Scale is looking at me with that pleading look he gets sometimes.  So, I gave him another chance.  Hopped on and he gave me 176.  Guess he learned his lesson.  Anyway, I gave him a stern lecture.  I’m going to go ahead and take him on vacation but, if he starts acting up again, he’s going to find his ass thrown out the window somewhere in the Mojave Desert.

3:30 – Okay, Chickies!  Time to move the laptop to the RV.



Friday Menu

Breakfast (see, Anne, I’m trying to do better! )
Oatmeal (140)
Vanilla Soy Milk (60)


Thursday Menu

Light Whole Wheat bun (70)
2 slices Plumrose ham (50)
1 egg (75)
1 slice fat-free cheddar cheese (25)

Veggie Burger (160)
Light whole wheat bun (70)
1 cup sweet cherries with pits (75)

1 cup Schwan’s fat free sugar free vanilla frozen yogurt (150)

Total 625


Get UP!

I’m finally out of bed this morning.  Stayed up too late and feel crappy this morning.  I always think I have to have my “down” time.  Since I worked late finishing up the tutorials for Ementors, I didn’t get “down” until almost 10:00 and stayed up till almost 1:00.  So I’m lying in bed wishing somebody would hit the button on the coffeemaker so I can get up and get moving (grumble, grumble) because I have a lot to get done today.  Down time is funny stuff.  I kept watching TV and eating junk as if it were some kind of reward for putting in a long workday.  Even when I couldn’t keep my eyes open, I wouldn’t give up and go to bed.  It’s my down time, dammit!  I earned it and I’m going to sit here and watch TV if it kills me.  So I just kept sitting there, stuffing my face with ice cream and watching TV mindlessly.  Yes, I did notice that yesterday’s snacks were almost half the total calories for the day.  Yes, I know that’s not healthy.  Yes, I know it was stupid to fix 1/2 cup of ice cream, then another 1/2 cup, then, finally say “What the Hell” and fix a full cup.  Oh, my calories stayed low, under 1,000 for the day but at least 400 of them were junk food.  (Wow, that Schwan’s Vanilla fat-free, sugar-free is good!  and only 70 calories per 1/2 cup!)  Can’t wait to see the smirk on Mr. Scale’s face after two days of not exercising.  I’m not ready to do it yet, let me drink another cup of coffee. Guess it says something about getting old when I’m sitting here feeling like I have a hangover because I stayed up past midnight and ate ice cream last night.  Geez, what has become of my life?!!

Lots to do today.  Wasn’t I just saying there was no rush because I still had nine days to get ready?  What happened?  We’re leaving tomorrow!  As soon as I can move, I need to go to the store and pick up all the Manny items like toilet paper, plastic wrap, toothpaste, etc.  DH is nagging me to death to go get my handicapped parking permit renewed because it expires the end of June.  It’s true.  I have a permanent handicapped permit but I’m feeling kind of embarrassed about it.  There have been many days in the last six years where the pain in my ankles was so severe I could barely walk and really needed that parking permit but things have been so much better since my last surgery two years ago that I hardly ever need to use it anymore.  I think DH likes it.  He’s likes to say, “I’m going to park here and you won’t have to walk so far.”  I’m walking just fine, thank you very much, and I don’t need a handicapped space.  Since I haven’t renewed it, he took it to the county clerk’s office yesterday to have it renewed and they said I have to come in.  He wants me to make sure I get it renewed today because I might start having problems on vacation.  So?  What’s that about, sweetie?  They don’t have handicapped parking spaces for 37 foot RVs! (grumble, grumble) 

I also have to go to the pharmacy and pick up the refills on our prescriptions.  I don’t like being on meds (except the hormones, of course!) and I’m hoping I can stop taking them if I stay on the straight and narrow.  I never had to take anything except hormones till last December when I had to start taking meds for high cholesterol and high blood pressure.

Of course, I also need to work out today but I don’t know that I can give it two hours.  Let me go see what I weigh.  Maybe that will give me some motivation to GET UP and start moving.

Ok… 176…it looks like Mr. Scale is trying to do his part so I guess, in all fairness, I should do mine.  Let me get this treadmill done.

11:00 – Ackkk!  It’s 11:00 o’clock!  I’m going to sit here for about ten minutes and cool off then I have to get my shower and get moving!   Speaking of moving,  Sistah Pat, you are so……..tricky!  Promised myself I’d do a quick hour on the treadmill but kept lying to myself that I’d go just one more level and wound up doing the notorious 3 more miles workout.  I really didn’t have 95 minutes to give to the treadmill today but I always feel so good when I successfully push myself.  Now I’ve got to get my shower and get some stuff done or I’m going to be in deep doo doo when DH gets home.

2:00 – Went by TJ Max and picked up soap.  (It’s a thing with me.  I hate grocery store soap.)  Stopped by the pharmacy and got the prescriptions and some Olay Regenerist moisturizer.  Regenerate me, Olay!  Walked in the County Clerk’s office.  Take a number, take a seat.  I’m number 13 and they’re serving number 4.  Got to cool my heels a little bit there.  Now I’m home, made myself a fake Egg McMuffin for lunch and then I have to get this house straight.

OMG!  Oldest DS, Darryl, just did a double-take and said, “Wow, Mom, you’re really starting to get skinny!  It’s really showing that you’ve lost a lot of weight.”  I knew there was a reason I let that kid reach maturity.  Oh, wait…maybe he’s setting me up for all those fast food stops he wants to make on vacation.  hmmmm….

Almost forgot that it was time to take monthly measurements.  Here’s the table.


Now, here’s the analysis…  A total of 7.75 inches.  I really don’t know if that’s good or not because I have nothing to compare it to.  What’s normal?  I don’t have a clue.  I think it’s pretty good but that may be wishful thinking.  Interesting trends…hips and legs seem to be the areas of biggest loss.  Probably because I’m running myself ragged on the treadmill or jogging in the pool.  Obviously, it’s going to take some upper body exercises to see any effect on the bust, midriff, arms, and waist.  What’s the deal with that left calf getting bigger??? 


Working Girl

I’m working with the Ementors today.  Hoping to finish up the tutorials I wrote last week.  I wanted to get 5 of them done and I only finished 3 of them in two days last week.  Don’t know if I can get two more done today but I’m going to try.  If I don’t get them finished, it’ll weigh on my mind and I’ll wind up finishing on my own time which I don’t want to do.  I hate to have something halfway done.  Pam is not going today but I’ll probably drive over and check on her at lunch.

Made a deal with myself yesterday evening that I could skip exercise if I also skipped the Moosehead Beer so I wound up in the spa with iced tea.  Seems like I’m always bargaining with myself.

Mr. Scale is showing me 177 this morning.  I CANNOT figure out what’s going on here.  I dipped down to 176 last Sunday and then up to 180 and then down to 178 yesterday.  I’m three days past my goal date for 175 and frustrated.  Maybe I’ll go back and review my menu for the last week or so.  Or Maybe, that’s just the way it is.  Period!  That’s probably the case.  I’m not doing anything wrong.  It just doesn’t come off as fast as I want it to.  (sigh)  I’m pretty stubborn, however, and I’ll get where I’m going.  It just looks like I may need to do some serious reevaluation of those goals.  On the other hand, I took total body measurements on May 19 so I’m going to check them this evening and see if the loss is showing up in inches.  That’s more important anyway.  It looks like I may be getting just the tiniest little indentation in the area where a waist should be.

Plan for the day – – Ementors will have junk snacks available for us and I will take a piece of fruit.  Lunch will be on the run because I want to go by and check on Pam.  I’ve got to stop skipping meals.  I think there’s a McDonalds on the way so I can pick up an Asian salad with grilled chicken and a fruit and yogurt parfait.  Exercise will be annoying today.  Two choices, the treadmill or the pool.  We’ve had a little cool front moving through and the temperature of the pool has taken a dip so it’s a bit chilly.  I’ll have to see how I feel.  I’d rather do the treadmill but I’m usually too tired if I wait until late afternoon and that’s when I’ll be getting home.

I’m off to the shower and then to work.  Later!

8:40 – Yeah, I know, I’m at work and the taxpayers are paying me big bucks to be here but everyone else is having breakfast and I forgot my fruit.  It occured to me this morning, after reading Joy’s entry about some of the wonderful things we have to be grateful for, that we tend to look at the entire forest and don’t always focus on the trees.   We hardly ever think about the itty bitty things we have to be thankful for.  With that in mind, here’s my top five list for this morning.

I am grateful for my coffeemaker.
I am grateful for water sprinklers.
I am grateful for bras that do not have underwires.
I am grateful for Croc’s flip flops and, last but not least,
I am grateful for wireless internet access.

5:00 – As I feared, I didn’t get finished.  Of course, I don’t have to finish it.  I could come back to it the next time we meet for pay in September but, by then, I’ll have lost my train of thought so it looks like they’re getting at least another three hours or so out of my free time.  I stayed an hour later anyway hoping I could get it finished but I know it’s going to take a while so I came on home.  If I’m doing volunteer work, I’d rather do it here than there.

I ran over to Pam’s at lunch.  She looked a little bit worn but said she’s feeling much better.  She’s not planning on working tomorrow although she was going to teach a group of teachers how to use their new tablet PCs.  Sistah Lisa is going to do it for her.

So now I’m home and want to get this tutorial finished so I can get it off my mind and spend tomorrow packing.


9:00 p.m. – As far as finishing these tutorials, that big voice in the sky should boom down and say “DONE!”  Whoo Hooo!  Do you think I’m going to work out this evening??? NOT!


Wednesday Menu

2 slices lite whole wheat bread (70)
1 slice fat-free cheese (25)
2 slices Plumrose hame (50)
Strawberry Tart (60)

Healthy Choice Turkey dinner (300)

Rice Cakes (90)
Schwann Fudgesicles (90)
2 cups Fat-free, Sugar Free Ice Cream (300)

Total 985

Maybe I was a little too rough on Mr. Scales yesterday.  I haven’t talked to him this morning.  Got up and poured a cup of coffee and DS said, “Can I take a long, hot soak in your tub?”  Sure, soak as long as you want.  I’m not ready to deal with Mr. Scale yet.  I was thinking I should sit down with him and we could talk about the issues.  I don’t think he really knows how hurtful he can be.  I mean, right there on the front in skinny little letters ‘Thinner Slimline’.  He’s one of those elegant digital models that’s about two inches thick at the most.  He’s never had to deal with weight issues and doesn’t understand what it’s like for the rest of us.  I just don’t know how to deal with him.  I guess I’ll see how he behaves today and take it from there.  We may end up in counseling if he continues with this arrogant attitude.

I’m trying to decide whether or not to work out on the treadmill this morning.  Sistah Pam is coming over this afternoon.   We’re supposed to jog in the pool for an hour and then I’m fixing us dinner and we’re going to sit in the spa with a Moosehead Beer and smoke cigars.  Aren’t we the wicked ones?  She’s still coming but her email says to keep dinner “mild”.  I planned on fixing grilled ginger pork tenderloin, baked sweet potatoes with cinnamon and splenda, a salad, and phyllo cups filled with a misture of Cool Whip, fat free sour cream, and peaches.  I love spicy food and that seems pretty mild to me.  What do you think?

Twice in the last six weeks, Pam’s been victim to uncontrollable vomiting to the point of it leaving her dehydrated with elevated blood pressure and sugar levels and landed her in the hospital.  The first time, they ran a few tests and decided it was a stomach virus.  After this week’s bout, they referred her to a gastro intestinal specialist.  I hope everything is okay with her.  In the meantime, I can’t decide if I should work on the treadmill because it wouldn’t surprise me if she didn’t feel up to jogging in the pool for an hour.  I have lots to do today and really don’t think I have two hours to give to the treadmill, although he is much more appreciative of my efforts than Mr. Scale.  I can always count on his support.  I do the work and he takes off the calories.  Nice arrangement.

Okay, DS is out of the tub and Mr. Scale is showing me 178.  He seems to think that’s acceptable behavior.  I do not!  He’s still grounded.  I don’t know where these extra pounds are coming from but he and I are not going to mend our relationship until he starts treating me right.

10:30 – Anyone besides me ever watch that reality show that came on a few years ago called Damon Stern’s Monster House?  They’d take a bunch of guys into a house and do some really funky remodeling.  They had a time limit on getting it done and there was this illustration of the house with all the jobs on it.  Each time they got one out of the way, it would be stamped on the illustration with a big “DONE” sign and a voice would boom out and say “DONE!”

On days like this when I have a lot to do, I always expect this big, booming voice to call down from the Heavens. 

Trip to the store – “DONE!” 

Mix up marinade and slice up tenderloin – “DONE!”

Wash and dry dishes – “DONE!”

Make the bed and clean the bedroom – “DONE!”

Bake the phyllo shells for dessert – “DONE!”

12:30 – Trip across town to my credit union to clean out the vacation account – “DONE!”

Peach and nectarine filling and Raspberry glaze for dessert mixed up and ready – “DONE!”

1:00 – Plant the beautiful shasta daisies given to me by darling GD who obviously does not understand the contradiction between Shasta Daisies and dense shade (smile). – “DONE!”

2:00  – Living room cleaned and vacuumed – “DONE!”

Bathroom scrubbed and polished and fresh towels put out – “DONE!”

3:00 – Kitchen cleaned and scrubbed – “DONE!”

Spa Cover scrubbed – “DONE!”

Outside Table and chairs scrubbed – “DONE!”

Fresh Tablecloth, kitchen floor mopped and waxed – “DONE!”

and now, I’m DONE, DONE, DONE and can relax a while.  Then, in true woman fashion like my mother and her mother before her, I can wring my hands when Pam gets here and apologize for everything being such a mess because I just didn’t have time to get to it today!  😉

4:00 – Pam just called and said she’s still under the weather.  Oh well, I guess that means I have a great dinner ready and can relax this evening.  Although, I’m pretty done in, I think I still have enough energy to run up to the liquor store and pick up some Moosehead.  I like to invite people over right before we go on vacation because I know it’ll give me that extra incentive to get everything clean before we leave so now I can take it easy as far as the house goes.  I’m working tomorrow, packing on Thursday, and we’re so outa here on Friday!

4:45 – Just looked it up and it’s been 12 days since I took a day off from exercising so I might skip it tonight and just relax in the spa.   


Tuesday Menu

Oops!  4:00 p.m. and I haven’t had a chance to eat today.

2 slices ginger grilled pork loin (400)
Baked sweet potato (200)
Salad with regular dressing (150)
Peach Tart (60)

Sugar free/fat  free vanilla ice cream with blueberries (250)

Total 1,060