Monday, September 30, 2013

Bye Bye Plateau

The weight is slowly starting to come off.  It appears my mega plateau has been lifted and I must give thanks to the many personal weightless blogs I've been following and reading to see if it was "just me" who experienced such a lengthy plateau.

I'm back to running.  I'm on my second week...yay!  Last week I ran Monday, Wednesday and Friday.  On Tuesday I did that annoying stepper thing I've got.  My hip was acting up a bit so I skipped the stepper on Thursday and just rested and the weekend is my whole mind and body rest days.  

I've been weighing in daily and dropped 1.3 pounds last week which most likely may have been water but hey, seeing the number dropped really turned me on to exercising more.  I just returned from a 20 minute run.  I'm only doin 20 minutes to get the shin splints under control again and because if I go longer I know one day I may give up so, baby steps again steps.  I'm hoping to run the whole winter and that itself is a major challenge steps.  Let me ease into autumn and get my breathing under control.

I went to the farmers market this weekend and got a big bag of carrots (my co-worker will laugh at that) and I got some English seedless cucumbers and two tasty salad dressings to dip them.  I'm really trying to get those last pounds off before christmas...

It's so hard though..... Ok I'll stop whining. 

Monday, September 23, 2013

Runner #5

Hello, I'm runner #5, and I survived the crash. 

Ok, you're probably wondering what I'm talking about.  Well, today was the first day back to running and aside from feeling totally and utterly awesome... I've also started using the ZombiesRun app.  I'd downloaded it to my ipod touch a couple of months ago when it was on sale for $2.99 (from $7.99) so I think that can count as a good deal... at least until it asks me to purchase more then we'll see. 

So today I got up, weighed myself, blah, blah blah...connected my step counter to my sock so I can get an accurate count of my steps and the distance I ran and off I went.  The distance by the way was 2km and that will be what I intend to run for the next two weeks until I get my legs and lungs back in shape.  

Now as I was saying, I used the Zombies app and so far I liked it, no complaints.  The sound was clear but that could be because I don't use the white ipod earbuds but instead I use a pair of Sony earbuds that have a volume control on the cord and they do sound pretty awesome.  I got them for $14.99 not on sale at the pharmacy but because I dropped my other pair in my coffee I had no choice but to make the purchase.  Anywho, I started off on a quick walk listening to the app tell me I was on a plane then it crashed and I survived but I'm now inside an area filled with "hostiles" aka zombies.  I've been instructed to head for the tower but to make a pit stop at the hospital and pick up some medical packs on my way.  The app is pretty nice, it kept me focused on my run and before I knew it my run was over, but the story in the app will continue on my next run and that's what I like about it, so I'll look forward to the next run.

On this run:
  • I survived a plane crash
  • crashed landed in an area filled with zombies
  • started to run and collected the Chipotle Labs app (whatever that is)
  • collected some bandages
  • collected a mobile phone (not sure if it was an apple or blackberry though)
  • collected two first aid kits
  • collected some tins of food.

Not bad for my first run... and I didn't encounter any zombies... phew!

Wednesday, September 18, 2013

Running On Determination

I just read this great inspiring article over on Yahoo Shine and thought I might share the story, if even just for my own personal use if that be the case.  

The lady in this photo is Molly Jordan and she lost 140 pounds by running.  The article, which you can find HERE AT SHINE is really more about her determination.  To sum it up short, this lovely lady decided one day that she didn't want to be 300lbs any more and she always wanted to be a runner.  So she ran.  The article continues to explain the changes she made to her eating habits and how she made time to go to the gym or to get out for a run.  I guess I can easily compare myself with her in a sense that I don't have to get children up early for school so an early morning run is "easy".  I prefer exercising in the morning hours but in my case, since I'm all backwards... and by that I mean I work nights so when I arrive home at the "end of the day" it's really first thing in the morning when most folks are just getting up, or are just leaving their homes to head to work or to take the kids to school or some extra curricular activity.   I like arriving home, changing into a pair of sweats and then heading out for a run.  I admit I haven't run as much as I could have this year and I blame my hip.  I do walk often enough but, like Molly, I got greater results with running and it's also a great way to loose that dreaded belly fat.  Now if I had children, I could easily blame them for my dreaded belly fat (makes a nice easy excuse eh), if I was much younger I'd simply say it's teenage fat that is slowly on its way out (I got lots more excuses too).  Sadly enough in my case it's just candy cake laziness.  I've been exercising this week, two days straight on the stepper... or as the writing on the machine says "body sculpting cross stepper" so I've been sculpting my body in to what, I'm not quite sure yet. I guess with it being Autumn, and Halloween around the corner, what better time for me to give the Zombies Run app a run for it's money.  I did get it for a discount price of $2.99 so why not... lets get that last 18 pounds off immediately!  

Determination.... I gotta remember that word... I like it better than motivation right about now.  Seriously! 


note: photo courtesy of Yahoo! Shine Canada

Tuesday, September 17, 2013

Not Worth Bragging About

Believe it or not I did some exercise on Monday!

I woke up early enough and did a couple minutes of exercise.  Nothing really worth bragging about... then again, nothing really worth blogging about!  I should actually be ashamed of the mere 20 minutes I did.  I didn't really even break a sweat!  I'm just being positive about it because it's the first day I've exercised since returning from vacation time.  Sure I've been at work for a week already but it was so difficult adjusting back to the swing of things.  No, not because it's work and not relaxation, but it's night shift and I was so accustomed to sleeping at night !!!  So now I'm in tune to my unusual hours, and I'm liking the look and feel of this weightloss.  Even my doctor noticed the difference even before he weighed me in!  woot woot!!!   So for the next couple of weeks I intend to keep up with the exercise, and if it happens to be just 20 minutes, then that's alright too because it's better than no minutes.  I really aught to reed the Shape and the Fitness magazines I subscribed to on Zinio.  Those magazines really help with diet maintenance.  Not to mention that I need to get to the farmers market for some fresh veggies.  Some sweet bell peppers and cucumbers would be a great treat.  Oh, and did I mention I treated myself to some juicy oranges the other day?  Oh my were they deeeelish.  mmm...

I've completely lost my train of thought!  Funny, that usually only happens when I mention cake.


Friday, September 13, 2013

How It All Began

I'm feeling somewhat sentimental today.  I remember how my Granny used to send me homemade crafts via snail-mail.  This time of year she'd be busy knitting mittens or socks for her grandkids.  I still have all the socks and mittens she sent me over the years.  I've got them bundled up in a bag and stored in a trunk in my closet for safe keeping. 

I remember once she sent me a quilted pot older with two teddy bears on the front.  I never used it as a potholder because it was too pretty.  I wanted to make her something in return so I went to the local Zellers department store and purchased a small counted cross stitch kit.  It was about this time of year so I picked a Christmas themed one that had a teddy bear holding a candy cane.  I still have the pattern to that kit believe it or not!!! 

Up until this time, I'd never done anything crafty other than some doodle drawings or a crochet granny square that of course, my Granny taught me to stitch.  I remember I opened the kit, had the utmost difficulty threading the needle but I completed the teddy bear, framed it in the red plastic frame that was included with the kit but it still looked awful.  The bear looked like a potato holding a red and white stick and not like a bear holding a candy cane.  I mailed my Granny the finished framed stitching along with the package with a note telling her what it was supposed to look like but didn't quite turn out the same.  I assumed that she'd send me a thank you letter... oh sure I got a letter alright, Granny told me to go buy the kit again and this time read the directions properly and make her another one!

Yes I was shocked, but I laughed and did as I was told.

Apparently my error was that the embroidery thread is six ply, and I only required two ply to stitch with.  This explains why I had difficulty threading the needle!  I used all six at once instead of separating out only two to use.  The finished product looked exactly as the picture on the package said it would!  I was so proud of myself and couldn't wait to mail it to my Granny. 

She did write back again this time saying she loved it and said she expected another stitching from me soon.  So since then I've been stitching and perfecting the finished product with kreinik metallic filament, beads, pearls, etc., anything that will make the item really blossom. 

Some of my recent crafts are posted here on my flickr album.

I put lots of love into each and every stitching I do and this is how my Granny became my inspiration for my etsy shop.  My Granny had a craft store out of her home in Nova Scotia and she mailed me one of her pins that advertised her shop.  I still have it in awesome condition but it's not the name of my etsy shop because that name was taken, so I used the next best thing.... which I'll announce in a couple weeks when the shop opens!  But in the meantime...happy crafting!

Thursday, September 12, 2013

A Minute In Susan's Mind

Slowly but surely my itty bitty etsy shop is taking shape.  So far I've got a name for the shop and an avatar and also a banner (though I'm not too in love with the banner so it may change before the shop actually opens for business).  I've got some of the shop policies written up and tons of ideas written in a notebook so I don't forget what I had planned to do.  This time of year is what I like to refer as my "busy season" because I stitch home made ornaments for family and friends and so far I seem to be on track with all of that but I don't want to be side tracked from anything when my mind starts to wonder about whether or not I remembered to do this, that or the other. 

Ok, I'm rambling now so I'll just shut up. 

Wednesday, September 11, 2013

Season Of The Farmer

I love this time of year...



The season after Summer, but before Winter.

Ok so technically it's not quite Autumn yet, not until sometime next week or the week after but that's not what this post is about... it's about harvest season or whatever most folks call it.

We've got an out-door farmers market in one of our local areas.  It's closer to my work place than to my home so obviously I go out of my way to shop there when on my way to or from work.  This time of year the red, green, yellow and orange bell peppers will be for sale at super low prices for nice size baskets, along with squash, turnip, and big baskets of apples, apples and more apples!!!  I always find I eat healthier this time of year.  Ok yes I was on vacation recently and ate unhealthy food, didn't log anything in the food journal, didn't exercise, didn't weight myself, and didn't feel guilty .....

Until I got home... oh boy, do I feel bad now!

So the market and the veggies, and fruits and the season all wrapped up into one will put me back in the swing of things because I'm not giving up.  This time of year, with all the fresh veggies that I enjoy, and apples too... I'll get those 8 pound off before Christmas rolls around, then I'll be able to focus on the last ten pounds in the new year... yup, it sure sounds like a plan.

Tuesday, September 10, 2013

Ellis Island And More

On Friday August 30th we took the #4 subway from Brooklyn to somewhere in Manhattan to go get tickets to the ferry to Ellis Island and the Statue of Liberty.  
Guess who was excited?

Yup! ME!!

It looked like it was going to rain but it ended up being hot and humid.  Montreal humid! Ugh oh my poor hair!  So we caught the ferry and we rested on the top level so I could take an obscene amount of pictures. I also love our Olympus camera because it takes HD video with sound so I took some of Manhattan behind us and Lady Liberty in front of us.  The breeze on the ferry felt nice.  I was in awe of the statue.  I've been to New York a couple of times before but only seen her from a distance while driving over the Brooklyn Bridge.  So you can imagine how I felt when we docked and I was able to be at her feet looking up .... But not up her dress!   *shivers* 

We took even more pictures and then caught the subway back to Times Square where I picked up a souvenir for two of my nephews.  I also spotted a Tim Hortons coffee shop right across the street from Madison Square Garden though it was more like a kiosk than a shop.  It was squeezed in a small corner with absolutely no place to sit.  Barely enough space for the server if you ask me.  I bought a Canadian coffee from there and told the server about the Tim Horton shops in Canada and how a shop this small is a shock for me to see.  She laughed and asked some questions about Canada and if I was enjoying my stay in New York.  She was very pleasant!  

Once again we called it an early night, all that walking was exhausting!

Monday, September 9, 2013

Times Square

On Thursday August 29th we walked to the subway and headed back towards Penn Station.  We headed towards Times Square where yet again I was all tourist like.  That camera became an extension of my right hand. I was forever taking pictures of the skyline, store signs, people walking, taxis, you name it, I photographed it.  

We walked a lot.  My body was aching but it was such a nice hot day.  Hello Kitty used my camera to take a picture of me with Cookie Monster and Minnie Mouse's sister then Cookie Monster tried to swindle me into paying five bucks to each of them.  What?  Seriously?!?  Hey, the photo was taken with my camera and it wasn't developed and placed in a fancy folder like they do on the cruise ships when they charge you ten bucks for the photo so I had to forcefully tell Cookie Monster no way.  I gave him a buck and gave Minnie Mouse's sister fifty cents and told her to share it with Hello Kitty.  Bunch of crooks aught to be ashamed of themselves.  They should be saying "for five bucks we will take your photo" then share the loot amongst themselves.  

We walked some more then headed to McDonald's for a McChicken Lunch.  Afterwards, we walked a bit more, and I bought a purse on the street corner for ten bucks and then some more post cards for our scrapbook.  Then caught the train back to Brooklyn.  

Sunday, September 8, 2013

Keep On Keeping On

Much to my surprise, I didn't go too much off track with the health while on vacation.  I didn't over eat while we were in New York for the first week, and the week I spent at home I was too busy organizing the craft supplies and getting some much needed rest... you know, the vacation from the vacation!

I weighed myself yesterday and didn't gain any weight, but I did lose a half a pound.  I really don't like it when it's only a half pound loss but better any loss than a half pound gain.  In my mind a half pound gain is like a ton!

Alright so I figure once I get back to work and my schedule is back to "normal" I'll get back to losing on a weekly basis.  I still have 18 pounds I want to shed before next June, and at least 8 of them before this Christmas!!!

note: photo courtesy of

Saturday, September 7, 2013

Manhattan Bound

On Wednesday  August 28 was our third day on vacation.  Surprisingly enough, we awoke early, and I fried us up some eggs for breakfast.  We left our friends' home and headed into Manhattan by subway train all by ourselves.  Yes, we were feeling very adventurous!  We took the subway train #3 to 34th street & 7th, basically, back to Penn Station, and then we walked in search of an electronics store that husband had researched on line before we left home.  The store was super huge! I made like a typical tourist which in return had every one selling something on street corners trying to sell me something!  We spotted a K-Mart and headed in to pick up our lightbulbs but once we exited the store, it was raining cats and dogs so we were trapped under an awning waiting for it to let up.  We were both in white tee shirts so me getting drenched was not an option! 

Once the rain let up to a light drizzle, we headed to McDonalds and had a burger lunch then it rained again so we headed back to Brooklyn where we were staying with friends.  

When the rain finally stopped we had a BBQ dinner out back in the yard where I think I was the main course because I got eaten alive by Mosquitos.  In the span of the few minutes it took me to eat I got bitten over eiht times.  It was kind of funny after the fact obviously.  An early night off to bed.  It was humid, same like being in Montreal ,Canada.  

Thursday, September 5, 2013

New York!

Finally we were on vacation.  This year husband and I headed to New York, USA.  

Our "adventure" as we're calling it began with a debate of wether to take the train or bus from Montreal to New York.  We opted for the train since we usually take the Voyageur or Greyhound bus and I really wanted to do something different from our usual.  We purchased our tickets with Amtrack nice and early so we wouldn't be scrambling at the last minute.  

We still scrambled at the last minute though! Ha! Ha!

The Friday before we were set to leave, I exchanged some money to American dollars.  Will never get used to having all green money.  Canadian money is colourful (red fifties, blue fives, green twenties and we don't have one dollar bills, we have a dollar coin and we ditched the penny too).  Then I had all the packing to do.  Husband was at work though I worked the night before, there were things that still needed to be done so I took care of getting the money exchanged and the luggage packed.  Then I had to prepare sandwiches and snacks to take on the train with us since it was going to be a 10 hour trip... Would be shorter by bus believe it or not!  By bus it's only an eight hour trip with one stop between Central Station and the Canadian-USA border.  By train there are a bazillion stops before the border and tons more after.  

We boarded our train and were on our way by 9:30am.  Ten million stops later, we arrived late in to Penn Station at 9pm.  Grabbed the subway and were by our friends house in no time.

Fried chicken and fries for dinner and we called it a night.  We were tired but still somewhat excited to be on vacation.