This girl is funny...not skinny.

This girl is funny...not skinny.

Friday, January 29, 2016

Sarah Does Battle with 750 Million Live Viable BC30 Cells. Guess how this ends...

Good evening!

This is going to be one of those posts. So Todd, Tom, and anyone else who gets grossed about by biological talk, you've been warned.

A pot of honey to make the tummy stop rumbling.

I've long thought that we as a society spend a lot of time talking about pooh.  No, not Winnie the Pooh.  More like...Jaime Lee Curtis pooh.  We've become very, very concerned about pooh. How often we make it, how hard it is to make it, what happens if we can't stop making it.

One question parents ask their very young children when faced with a mystery stomach ache is, "When did you pooh last?"

When I was a child, my mother thought proper poohing was the cure all for everything. And poohing of an irregular nature had to be cured RIGHT AWAY.  Thus, we had the biggest bottle of Peptobismal in the cabinet.  (For those of you not familiar with Pepto, it's gooey, it's pink, and it's faintly peppermint. It's supposed to cure runny pooh.  All of these are good things.  however, it's also chalky, which is weird for a liquid, and it turns your tongue black.  Don't believe me?  Go to your parents house, get the bottle  They have one.  Trust me. Have a teaspoon. It won't matter if you're not suffering from any of the ailments listed on the bottle.  It's not that effective.  Get back to me in about six hours when you look in a mirror and your tongue is black.
A pot of something to make the tummy start rumbling.

Conversely, for pooh issues of the less regular kind, my mother kept a stock of glycerin suppositories in the fridge. My mother believed in cures that involved shoving something in our rears.  Rectal thermometers, enemas, glycerin suppositories. even aspirin suppositories.  She didn't like things going through our bloodstreams and into our stomachs. My brother had a sensitive stomach and threw up a lot. So did I. My mother hated cleaning up vomit so she avoided giving us anything that might irritate our bellies.

Anyway, back then, there weren't a lot of socially acceptable ways to discuss pooh problems.  We kept the Pepto in the cabinet and the suppositories in the fridge and if anyone asked, my mom would say, "oh, the kids are a little irregular." And she'd whisper it, like she was admitting we had to be held back a grade or stole gum from the local store.

When I got a little older, Mom ran across a Shaklee lady who sold Cod Liver Oil.

If you don't know what either of those are I envy you.  I was a much older adult before I realized Shaklee sold products OTHER THAN Cod Liver Oil.

Mom shoved a spoonful of that black goo down our gullets every morning.  We stopped being...well, stopped...but still. Ew.  Mom was like the ANTI Mary Poppins.

Once I was grown and had my own kids I went through the whole, "When did you pooh last?" with them. And yes, we have a bottle of Pepto in the cabinet. Neither kid would touch the stuff. And as for suppositories, I'm sorry, I only used them once, when Skippy was a tiny baby. They were weird and I don't think they worked right.  To stop upset tummies, I had a list of foods to feed the kids (We called it the B.R.A.T. diet. Bananas, Rice, Applesauce, Toast.)  And honestly, when my kids got backed up, they sort of just rode it out.  

Fast forward to a couple years ago. Suddenly, Jamie Lee Curtis, star of stage and screen and Hollywood royalty, comes on TV touting a yogurt with LIVE CULTURES AND PROBIOTICS that's supposed to help you when you're feeling "sluggish."

I've had my own issues with sluggishness as I've aged.  I'll admit it...I have had some pooh issues. And anyone my age who is hiding behind the whole, "I'm having a bit of tummy trouble" needs to get over it.  When you reach a certain age your body starts to betray you.  I didn't allow myself to break wind for decades. Hubby always warned me that eventually I'd explode.  Then I hit 45 and TAH DAH my living room has been the scene of many a toot-a-palooza.  Humiliating the first time it happened. Hubby looked at me, and I said, "Oh excuse me!" He said, "It's about time!"

Anyway, I tried the yogurt.  That was  a big no. First of all, it's not that delicious. There's a weird flavor. And second, it made my stomach feel worse. As for making me not feel irregular or sluggish, no, it didn't help that, but it did bloat my gut to a very fun size.

So I continued the search for the thing I could use that would get my body back on track.  (I can hear some of you saying, Hey, drink lots of water and eat raw vegetables.  Yeah. Right. Let's move on.)

Over the last year I've discovered a love for all things gummy.  Gummy multivitamins. Gummy Melatonin to help me sleep.  Gummy Biotin to make my nails and hair glorious.  My shelf in the bathroom looks a little like a candy shop. I get a tiny snack in the morning and one at night.

So IMAGINE my excitement when I found GUMMY PROBIOTICS!  This was going to SOLVE ALL MY POOH PROBLEMS!


The label suggests two gummies a day for an adult, four if there's some sort of digestive issue.  WELL.  Day one, I took one, because, you know, I'm cautious.  Day two I took two.  I felt fine. I felt good. I felt regular.  On day three I had a bit of a back up.  the label said I could take four.  I didn't feel that sluggish because the label said each gummy contained 250 Million viable BC30 cells.  I don't know what any of that is, but 100 million of anything in my body seemed excessive. So I took three instead.  And I went to bed.

And the next morning.

Well the next morning and for probably the next twelve hours I spent a lot of time running to the bathroom and doing battle with the 750 Million viable BC30 cells in my body.  More of a bargaining than a battle really. I'd say, "Okay, I'm going, but only let the pooh out."  Then I'd say, "Okay, I'm going, but this has GOT to be the last time."

Then I'd say, "WHAT ON EARTH CAN I POSSIBLY STILL HAVE IN THERE?"

And finally, when then 750 million viable BC30 cells had reduced me to a deflated, empty shell of person, devoid of any blockage, and also devoid of any internal organs, bones, and any muscle tissue I might have (thankfully, and typically, of course, the FAT all remained) I gave up. I swore I'd be good. I'd drink more water. I'd eat raw veggies, or at least I would talk about eating raw veggies.  

The 750 Million viable BC30 cells declared victory.  I shoved the nearly full bottle of pro biotic gummies to the dark corner in the back of the shelf.  Maybe I'll just get regular gummies and eat those instead.


Saturday, January 16, 2016

Never again, Pick and Save! This was the pineapple that broke my back.

Good morning!

It's been a difficult week for the family here. Hubby's father passed away suddenly.  Hubby has been out of town, handling arrangements and helping his sisters clean out Dad's place. I would be there, but there were things here that needed attending to, the biggest of which was getting Peaches' car to pass emissions testing. This involved having to take her car in for some lengthy repair. Since I work at home and she does not, I let her drive my beloved Cube.

This meant I was without a car for a goodly amount of time this week.  Without a car...pretty much alone....dead of winter.  You'd think I managed to clear out my overloaded DVR.  You'd be wrong.  But that's another story.

Anyway, we got the car stuff all sorted and so yesterday I was able to leave the house on my very own in my very own car.  I actually put on pants with a zipper for the occasion.  This was a big deal.

It's not like I went anyplace grand. I went to a couple second hand book stores/video stores to find a copy of Robin Hood: Prince of Thieves.  I can't believe I don't own that.  With Alan Rickman's passing, however, I had a yearning to see my second favorite of his films.  (The first would be Blow Dry. Honestly, if you haven't seen it, you should.)  Then I had to go to the grocery store.

I would have had to pass at least two other grocery stores to get to Woodman's, and I was getting tired.  This was, after all, my first foray outside in a few days. I decided, against my better judgement, to go to the dressed up version of Pick and Save...Metro Market.  Metro Market is just a Pick and Save with dimmer lighting and more food on buffets all out in the open so shoppers can just help themselves randomly...drive by snacking.  If I didn't need exactly two things, I wouldn't have stopped, but I needed more clementines and more of those Weight Watchers Snack Size fudge bars.  Seriously nothing calms my irritated stomach more than one of those little guys.  45 calories, and so much more effective than an antacid.  The snack size bars are hard to come by, they are usually sold out, so if I find them, I buy a couple boxes of them because they are the best.  

I get into the store and there are no clementines. Seriously.  Every other store in the WORLD has bags and bags and BAGS of those lovely little mini orange dealies, but not Metro Market. Nope. Must not be fancy enough for Metro Market.  I can get five kinds of brie at that store, but not one clementine to be had.  So I got some pineapple instead.  

On my way to the frozen foods aisle I picked up a couple other items.  I had a very small cart, one of those cute double decker things you're starting to see in stores.  Now, Woodmans has a rule that those carts cannot go outside. I didn't see the same sign for the one I was using,  but I figured, looking at the items in my cart, I could just carry them out, ideally in two bags.

I got to the check out line and I said to the clerk, "If you could put this in two bags that would be great.  I have  a bit of a walk to my car."  

He nodded and passed that message on to the bagger, a girl who looked like she had all the light energy of a mushroom.  I now know the meaning of the words "dead eyes."

I didn't pay attention to her bagging, I was busy watching the items rings up on the screen.  I paid, and I looked at the cart. Two bags in the top deck. All nice and waiting for me.

Awesome.

I rolled the cart to the entry where I picked up the bags and thought, "I don't see the ice cream bars."  I double check and there it is, a third bag, this one with the heaviest items, in the lower basket of the cart.  

Let's talk about this for a moment.  I mean, I asked for two bags, if it was possible. The dead eyed checker never said, "I had to put it in three."  She never said, "There's a bag on the bottom."  (These are all things that other baggers have done.  It's called common courtesy.)  No, instead she put two bags on top and wished me well, never telling me she'd buried the heaviest bag in the bottom.

I was a little annoyed, but what can I expect...it may say Metro Market on the door, but it's really a Pick and Save and that's what I get for shopping here.  I reached for the bag and pull, but because it's heavy, and tall, and she put the boxes with the sharp corners in there, I snag it on the top basket, tearing a pretty sizable hole in the bag.  I set down my other bags to free the third without further tearing the thing.  That's when I also discovered that Dead Eyes managed to arrange the items in one of the other bags so that the top of the plastic container holding the pineapple had broken the plastic seal strip and popped off and there was now pineapple juice pretty much on everything.

Oh good.

I realize she's not a doctor and thus did not have to take the oath that starts, "First do no harm."  And maybe asking that the groceries be put in two bags was too much.  And maybe three didn't fit in the top basket  (no, three would have fit in the top basket). Shouldn't the minimum expectation of ANY grocery shopper be that when they get the groceries to the car, the groceries AREN'T COVERED IN PINEAPPLE JUICE?

Never again, Pick and Save.  Call yourself whatever you want.  I've got Woodman's and soon I'll have a Meijer's and you will long be a distant memory with your overpriced everything and your dead eyed baggers and your check out clerks who have whole conversations with each other while totally
ignoring you.  (That didn't happen this time, but it has...)    Never again! 


Saturday, January 9, 2016

I'm not usually in my pajamas before 6 Pm on a Saturday, but there was a sports bra incident.

WARNING!

Today's post deals with ladies underthings.  TODD and TOM....and all the rest of you guys out there who come up to me and say, "Hey, you need to warn us when you're going to talk about stuff like your underwear, " CONSIDER YOURSELF WARNED!




Okay, now then.  Sports bras. There are so many women at the gym who wear cute sports bras with kicky colors under their cute sports shirts (you know the ones where you can sweat like a racehorse and it doesn't cling to all your gut lumps and back fat?), but guess what?  There are no sports bras for women above a certain...girth.  Sure, if I were built like BARBIE with a 32 DDDD I would definitely fine a fun sports bra that looked good and held the girl glands in place.

But I'm built more like Barbie's fluffy cousin Brad.  I'm more girthy at this point in my life than girlie. That does NOT mean I don't want a cute sports bra with a kicky color to wear under my cute sports shirt. I have a cute sports shirt. 

To be fair, I have found a couple sports bras that might fit...if they weren't made of material about as stretchy as Scarlett O'Hara's corset.  And since I don't have Mammy to boss me around and lace me up, I have to get the thing over my head and around my girl glands all on my own.

Which brings me to second problem I have with sports bras.  Given the state of my hands...my advanced arthritis and the current crippling effects of carpal tunnel to my right hand, I and not able to fasten a normal bra without excruciating pain.  And a sports bra take a whole different sort of approach because there's a lot more hand motion. If you have the right one, however, it's an easy on and off.  Some of my male readers have now drifted in the land of memories....when they struggled with that whole on and off motion of their beloved's bra.  Let's let them stare into space for three...two...one.

Welcome back, gents.  So anyway I was at Kohl's today in a futile effort to find something in my size. They have four city blocks of exercise clothes for the S, the XS, and the XXS.  

For those of us north of XL?  

Two arms on one rack.

Let me remind you all that the statistic in the US is that 52% of all women 18-49 have purchased plus sized clothing.  You'd THINK...YOU'D THINK these clothing stores would like to get a bigger slice of more than 50% of the female buying market.  At the very LEAST you'd think these stores would like to encourage fluffy girls to work out and get thinner.  OR AT LEAST there would be a movement to make more clothes for fluffy girls to wear so that so unsightly bulges or lumps or back fat would go uncovered.  Nope.

After searching the women's department I headed over to the TIMES SQUARE of shopping that is the Misses department. Hubby and I looked among the SIX HANGING RACKS of sports bras...not an XXL to be found. 

"You know what?  I said in my outdoor voice as we gave up the search.  "BIG GIRLS WANT TO LOOK CUTE WHEN THEY WORK OUT TOO!  BUT NO!  JUST THE XS GIRLS GET THE CUTE BRAS."

There was an XS girl standing about four feet from me. She started to laugh.  I gave her my death stare, that look that says, "Keep laughing, Stick Figure, and I'll find a way to sit on you and break all the little calcium deficient bones in your body, provided you haven't already had them removed so that you can be a size NEGATIVE 1!"

So we went to the store that understands all the best worst things in the US:  Walmart.  Where can a big girl go to get her snack cakes at 2 in the morning?  Walmart. where can a girl down on her luck go to drink wine ad eat donuts while riding a scooter?  Walmart.  Where can the super obese go to show off their new leggings/jeggings/bikini?  Walmart.

And sure enough...we weren't ten feet in the door and I found an entire rack of XXL sports bras. I got the XL and the XXL because the XL was my actual dress size, but it's Walmart, so the sizes tend to run small.  (Way to make a girl feel good there Walmart...but I suppose that drives up the sales of wine and Little Debbie's.)  I bought them, took them home and gleefully tried to get into the XL.

The elastic was clearly not light enough for my hands. And I wasn't about the cripple myself further to salve my ego.  I am what I am.  so I pulled on the XXL...and I spent about ten minutes unrolling the padding that had, in the course of getting pulled on, rolled up into a sort of tube inside the lining of the bra.  

I was okay with the fit and feel. I liked the adjustable straps.  But...and here's the key to the whole thing...I couldn't get out of the thing.

I didn't have the hand strength to pull the bra back up over my head. Not without shattering pain.  I attempted, against my better judgement and probably everything resembling common sense, to roll the thing off going down over my gut.  Yeah...the gut it could handle but I didn't need to roll that too far to know that the BUTT was going to be the uncrossable mountain.

I couldn't move it up and I couldn't move it down and I was sweating so much (have you tried putting on or removing a sports bra when your skin is wet? Yeah, it's not possible.) I knew there was no way I was getting this thing off.   So I do what any woman who has come to value avoidance of pain over her ego:  I called down the hall for my husband's help.

He walked into the room and I was standing there in my grey sweat pants and this bright yellow bra which was twisted in two separate directions and clearly cutting off circulation to portion of my body.  To his credit, the man did not laugh.  He got me out of it like a true gentleman.

And then we decided to see if I could find a sports bra that closes in the front.  I'm sure they're out there...but the pictures of the ones I've seen are neither cute nor kicky...they're beige.  Because that's the color of the shame I must feel now that I'm too big for cute colors and too crippled to get in and out of the ones that do fit.

And so the search continues.

Friday, January 1, 2016

Getting trapped on the rowing machine ruins the pirate fantasy! (And also, 2016 Resolution!)

Good afternoon and Happy New Year to all!

I kicked off the New Year like everyone else in the world:  I fell asleep on the couch  at 11:30 and woke up 90 minutes later, and then every 90 minutes after that because since my cortisone shot wore off two weeks ago the pain in my right hand from my advanced carpel tunnel syndrome (You thought I was going to say arthritis...well, I found something that kicks arthritis pain right out of my brain...carpel tunnel pain.OH YEAH!) that's how I spend my nights. At first I'd get up and
My hand...except add one more finger in the red and then
use actual flames.
wander around and eat something until the lightening bolt/vise-tightening crush of pain passed, but I've gotten smarter.  Now I get up, do a household chore, climb a couple flights of stairs...and eat something.  My Fit Bit stats look great and my kitchen looks better than it has in a decade.  Of course, eating four times in the middle of the night...not so good for the weight battle.

Which brings to me something that happened at Xperience Fitness this week. See, Hubby and I have made it a point since the week before Thanksgiving to get to the gym every weekday morning.  And we've done it, with the exception of Christmas Eve Day.  So we're pretty proud. I typically like to do a little weight resistance training (I'm trying to out lift the 80 year guy with the yellow head phones..the one who never wipes down his machine and always bangs the weights together.  So far, he still out-lifts me, but I'm getting close!) along with some time on the elliptical, a stationary bike, and the treadmill. I even tried this glider thing that looks like an elliptical without handles.  I'm not saying that machine beat me. I'm just saying it might be awhile before I can get over almost doing the splits on the thing because the stride was so wide and I had very little to hold on to.

Hubby, on the other hand, has had fun trying out a lot of different machines and changes up his workout almost every day.  A few days ago, he came upstairs to where I was riding my "Princess Bike..."

Wait, you don't know what a "Princess Bike" is?  I should explain:  See, there's an upstairs level to Xperience where there's a room full of bikes for spinning classes. Outside this room there is a collection of fairly random exercise machines, and by fairly random I mean there are two bikes, a couple rowing machines, three or four things I haven''t clue what they are, but they look like small stools you kneel on and then pull these seat belt cords back and forth and whip yourself in a sort of semi circle back and forth.  A bit much for my sense of adventure at 6 AM.  BUT, I really like the stationary bikes up there because they overlook the rest of the exercise floor and I can pretend I'm a princess on a horse (I've pretended that since the day I learned to ride a two wheeler.) and I'm riding on a mountain high above my subjects. Hey, don't mock me.  You try sleeping four hours a night and then see what motivates you to get out in the cold and go to the gym.

Anyway, I was on the "Princess Bike" and Hubby came up and sat down on one of the rowing machines.  He looked like he was having fun...so I got off my noble stead.. I mean I got of the bike and sat down on the rowing machine.  This was one of those where you have to strap your feet to the footrests with a canvass strap that's held in place not with a buckle but with one of those buckle looking things that actually have grippy teeth.  Then you sit back on the seat, grab the handles and pull and pull and pull.  Hubby suggested it was like being on the River Thames or on whatever river those Harvard and Yale guys are on when they row crew.

I had a different vision. I was the captain of a pirate ship, rowing to the island where I kept all my lovely gold and rubies and what not piles of treasure. And I would have made it, too, if it weren't for my stupid right hand.  It's hard and by hard I mean really painful, to grip anything early in the morning.  After a night of sleeping in broken 90 minute intervals, my fingers are stiff, swollen, and trying to bend them is awful.  So after two minutes of my pirate fantasy, my right hand felt like it was on fire and the joints and bones in my fingers felt about ready to explode.

Two minutes..that's all that took. Still, it was two minutes and hey, the next time it'll be three and then four. Baby steps. I wasn't upset, but I did need to get off the rowing machine.  I let the handle snap back into its brackets and then I reached down to unbuckle my feet.  However, given  my inability to bend the fingers on my right hand without horrible pain, I was unable to loose the straps on my feet. No matter, I told myself, I'll slip my feet out of the footrests. Nope.  The footrests had a bit of a lip on the bottom, keeping my feet firmly in place.  I was, for all intents and purposes, trapped by the feet on the rowing machine.

I had to wait a couple minutes for the flash of pain to subsided in my hand before I was final able to loose the straps and free myself from the Venus flytrap of exercise equipment.  Getting up I felt more like a rower on a Viking ship rather than a wealthy pirate, although I'm sure the way I smelled wasn't too far off from either.  


Two minutes. Two minutes on the machine and I managed to have two fantasies, get trapped, and smell like a filthy sailor who's been below decks for six months.

So sexy.  Can't wait to see if that two minutes on the rowing machine does anything for my abs. Because if it did, pain in the hand or not, you know I'm getting back on that thing.





So it's New Year's Day and I have my resolutions!

If you recall, last year I resolved to NOT eat at Burger King, McDonald's, Wendy's, or Arby's.  I thought it would change my life and my weight. Turns out, I managed to succeed in this resolution mostly because now that I'm working at home, I don't even drive near one of those places.  But the FRIDGE is always near and it's always open.  Sigh.


Anyway, here are my resolutions for 2016:

1)  I resolve to watch less TV and write more words in my newest novel.

2) I resolve to cook more fish, make more salads, and actually eat both instead of looking at what I've made and then ordering double cheese pizza.

3)  I resolve to stop making fun of female sideline reporters at NFL games.  It's not their fault the weather conditions have turned them into sopping wet, flat haired, red nosed harpies with runny make up. That's not how they started their work day, probably, and I should be more charitable.

4)  I resolve  to continue going to the gym every weekday, to walk more steps outside the gym, and to drink at least 75 ounces of water every day.

5) I resolve to getting my carpal tunnel fixed this year...even though that means learning to do things with my left hand that involve more flexibility than I have.  (I'm currently working on what I call "toilet yoga.")

6)  I resolve to GO to more movies instead of spending whole evenings scanning movies on Netflix and then just bingewatching "Scrubs" for a couple hours.  Going outside the house is good.

7)  I resolve to clean my kitchen floor more than...well more than I did in 2015.  You don't need to know some things about my life.  (Oh sure, she share "Toilet yoga" but she won't tell us how few times she cleaned her kitchen floor.)

8)  I resolve not to buy anymore new clothes until I either drop a size or pay off my Amazon Visa. Whichever comes first.

There you go...2016 is off and running!  Happy New Year to all!




The difference between a Meijer employee and a heart attack? Not much.

Good afternoon everyone and Happy Holidays! When I was little I lived in Michigan, home to a wonderful store called Meijer's Thrif...