Dear Cheezies, I've loved you for such a very long time. But I'm afraid we must part ways.
While your crazy colour lures me in something fierce, and your salty/crunchy texture perfection for a computer side snack, I have to let you go. For now.
You see, I started to put down the junk food for the time being and focus on better healthy eating habits. I fail daily, but in much smaller increments than I allowed before. I enjoy a taste here and there, but no longer will sit with a full bag by my side and mindlessly crunch.
I bought you 2 days ago. And went crazy. And nearly doubled over the next day. Oh. My. CHEESE!
It's not the Cheezie's fault. Not one bit. I'm certain a mild snack attack on occasion will not hurt the masses. But my indulging was nightly. It didn't have to be alot, but the problem was, it was consistent.
This new diet thang I'm attempting (not following a plan persay, but just grabs of ideas from various sources) states I really shouldn't snack. But I'm not good with that. I don't like stuffing myself stupid with big dinners to hopefully tide me over till the early AM. I don't like to 'feel' hungry. So I just eat regular portions, then allow for a small handful of nuts or ? for a snack. I don't want to run on empty only leaving me to further indulge and crave.
In are: vitamins LOTS of raw fresh veggies (low to no frozen, canned, cooked) lean healthy proteins (raw nuts, chicken, lean beef on occasion) extremely low bread type good carbs easy on the fruit to start (high in sugar) water as first beverage of choice (I lied. It's still coffee.) coffee on occasion (I lied. It's still coffee.) walks (we walk everywhere every chance we get) upping the sleep (ie: off the computer earlier!)
white carbs junk food bloating stomach acid fixes (pills, liquids and such)
I'm young into this healthier lifestyle so I have a long way to go. But after approx a week, I'm inspired because I FEEL better. I really really do.
What took me so long? I ask myself. I already know the answer.
You have to WANT this. You have to really really feel and want this bad. Because turning down amazingly fun food is so difficult when it's a habit.
I've done this all before and lost 25 lb. And I remember it well. I vividly remember gagging on a donut after a looong realm of not touching one. I remember a Tim Horton's ice cap being too sweet and wishing I had stuck to my fresh cold water instead. And that's all starting to come back to me again.
The trick? Get through the withdrawal of the bad, and you're on your way. Give it at least a week of a really focused "get it outa my sight!" kinda thinking. After 1 week, you'll start feeling better and be encouraged.
I'm starting a new label. I'm calling it diet talk. I'm going to keep reporting back in here to share what's working/not working. Maybe, just maybe, it may help another who's not feeling up to par for whatever reason.
At the very least, it can't be a bad thing to feel good! Right?
A few of you have been emailing privately, messaging on Facebook, and commenting on my blog, letting me know you're thinking of me. I truly appreciate your kindness!
My son and I in fact did have a lovely day, all things considering.
First, I slept in. After all that moving yesterday, the extra rest was totally needed. Upon waking, my son dashed to his room where he had hidden my present. He revealed a sweet little button bracelet he made in school! And I haven't taken it off since. :)
Once up and around, we head out for the vanilla coffee/slushie thing. And head down this trail to...
... my favorite little hideaway beside the river. It was sooo pretty! The sun was shining, the coffee hot, and my son and I laughed at the dog while she did her usual dog things. It felt good to laugh. And my son's giggle... it's infectious and makes you giggle as well even if you don't think something is funny. :)
Once getting home, I sauntered into the bedroom and flopped down yet again. But only for a moment. My mind was racing on all the things I'd rather be doing than nurse a tired body. So, I went for my paintbrush and started painting. :) (project to come on Funky Junk)
My son whipped us up some spaghetti while I continued my painting. Such a treat to have him helping in the kitchen! We took our dinner outside to enjoy the beautiful mountain view behind the house.
And then went for a swim.
Kidding! This pic was taken last summer but it shows the view. The good 'ol smurf pool will be put up again all in due time.
Aside from a few I-miss-her moments, it was evident that we were being thought of in more ways than one. Neighbors stopped by to say hello, one giving me some sweet flower plants and another a card and chocolates. And then there's always the good natured razzing I throw back at my fun neighbour across the road. He teases me about my free junk invaluable finds and I tease him about being jealous. :) I guess I should have mentioned, my apparatus I was painting on nearly took the entire width of my driveway...
We don't need alot of rah rah to make our days a success. The company of my son, lifting up a paintbrush, and simple things like coffee and river views are quite enough to fill my soul with all the right stuff.
Thank you for your kind thoughts and prayers. I know they helped to make our day a pretty good one. :)
Up until now, I still had a reason to go to my mom's. We were busy packing and sorting and I took my son for an occasional swim in her beautiful clubhouse pool. There was still the attachment of mom because of her home and her stuff when we went there, even though she wasn't there.
But as of today..
It's. All. Gone.
The rooms are bare and empty, the carpet wearing sad impressions of what was just in place moments ago. The walls have no love to them. The friendly clutter that was normally everywhere you looked now sit in boxes upon boxes. The life and the spirit and belongings of the one we loved has officially vacated the premises.
Now, you see, I've been given strict instruction for Mother's Day. My son says it makes him feel sad when he sees me sad and the day is special to him because of who I am. While feeling sad is quite natural in our given circumstances, I also need to flip the day into an ok one. My son is counting on it.
So, we took in the graveyard the day BEFORE Mother's Day. I don't think I could hold it together visiting a headstone while everyone else went to their mom's for lunch.
And I couldn't grasp my mom's name beside my dad's on the headstone. A name as familiar as my own... 'there.' Her signature, 'there.' Man...
It's quite an amazing headstone. It's a dark granite with a silhouette of my parent's farm done in an etch. Beautiful really. Bright side.. see the bright side I coach myself.
So, taking my own advice, I'm going to start by flipping this post into something abit more inspiring. It's Mother's Day after all. :)
My son loves baking so I think baking a cake together is in order. And I can also see going for a walk for my vanilla coffee and his slushie. We then like to take our treats to the park and sit on top of the picnic table and watch the town hurry on by while we laze away some time to chat. Yes, I can see doing this quite nicely.
Ohhhh I've got it! I'd like to walk by the river with our chosen treats. Being near water always does it for me!
There, see? I feel better already. I can do this! I can do it, mom.
Although no one can fill my mom's boots quite like she can, I'm certainly going to give it my best shot. This year our focus will be abit different. We're officially starting a new tradition. I'm going to celebrate BEING a Mom alongside my fav lil dude.
For those of you that are fortunate to still have your mom, enjoy her today. Listen to the stories, join in her laughter, and indulge her in yet another bear hug. Because, you can. :)
As for those that can't and are at a loss? Look into your kiddo's eyes and I have a feeling you'll know what to do next. I'm bankin' on it myself!
I've totally come to the conclusion that funerals are done so quickly after death so you can't even really fully comprehend what just transpired. Your mind just won't let you believe what your seeing or feeling. It's the weirdest experience ever.
The service was incredible. We showed my mom's 80th birthday slideshow showcasing her entire life in segments to certain songs. So beautiful and we laughed out loud through the service too. My dad in his short shorts, dark dress socks and black shoes on the beach. I remember those days. :) xo Dad!!
It was so cool to witness how many people admired my mom. By the numbers that attended, she was near hero status in my eyes.
And to see some of my neighbors and friends there that didn't really know my mom but were there for me?!? I think that made me cry more! :)
I even made a speech during the tea service thing. I told abit about my life with my mom. I'm so glad I did it. I wrote it the night before until 3am. She was worth it.
I was equally proud of the other family members that got up to the mike to honor my mom. It's not easy to do when you feel like that. Some speeches were quite humorous which mom would have loved. It felt good to laugh too.
I was so proud of my son. He was such a trooper as this was his first official funeral where he actually new the person that passed away.
We went to my sister's after the funeral. I'm glad I did. It felt good to mingle. I wasn't quite prepared to go home to a quiet house yet at the time. Once exhaustion took over, yup, then I knew I'd be ok.
I stayed stupid busy today. Couldn't sleep in, got up at 7, and worked on a project at home. Projects keep me creative and creative keeps me in my happy place. So for those of you that wonder how in heck I'm able to produce projects for a decorating contest at a time like this? Now you know. Day by day. I'll see how that all goes.
I need to start up my walks again. I think I'll start Monday. I need to walk some of this anxiety off. It comes through as impatience and anger at odd moments and while I know that's part of the normal mourning process, I need to keep it in check. Walking helps. Monday it is. River dyke and dog Jenna, we have a date!
Thanks to all for your incredible prayers. I know they are working. I know it. I'm surprised I'm doing as well as I am and I have you to thank for that.
These beautiful dried hydrangeas are on my mom's fireplace mantel. Aren't they the most beautiful hue? Gorgeous. Just like she was.
I miss you mom. Our regular visit is now officially overdue. But because I know you're safe and well, we will be ok.
Although my heart and eyes hurt today, we are receiving some unexpected love that is kindly reminding us that we are being thought of. And yes, it's lessoning that hurt just a little.
Some sweet offerings of 'let us help' have been coming our way. For now, we are being kind to ourselves, doing only what's absolutely necessary and moving at a slow and relaxed pace, spending some time on doing things we enjoy. Should the time come when some help is needed, I will call upon those that offered.
Other wonderful things have been transpiring to brighten up our otherwise somewhat confused days.
Some are selecting special goodness fresh from their garden and leaving it on our doorstep. I couldn't bring myself to move these. They were perfect as is. I love that they were simply placed in a casual water jug. Simplistic perfection in my eyes. Thank-you mystery neighbor. :)
And some treasures are traveling from thoughts far far away from us. These gorgeous pink roses are from my friends Miss Mustard Seed and her mother, located in Pennsylvania and Florida! Aren't they exquisite? These to me represent my mom so very much. Mom loved all flowers and she was feminine, delicate and her personality kind and soft. Soft pink roses represent her perfectly. Thank-you so much, ladies! Notice I funked them up some? :)
A really large and lovely fruit basket came from two neighbors, Janette, Corinne and families. The cellophane came off before we could even comprehend this one. Cody called it a BANQUET and it was also full of chocolates, cookies, crackers, cheese and sparkling apple juice. Every bite is delicious as we continue to enjoy this daily.
Corinne also sent over a fresh loaf of paska which reminded me enormously of my mom's own Easter bread. I savored every bite.
Joanne also treated the entire family to platters upon platters of sandwiches, fruit and veggie trays. Such a generous offering which we delightfully took part in and brought a good portion home.
Speaking of food, Vic and Bonnie delivered some homemade sausage and potato soup. The aroma had you devouring the soup in moments! The warmth was so comforting. Thanks so very much! And for joining me in a coffee, and not taking a moment's notice in how untidy the house was. :)
Yesterday we were all at my mom's cleaning out the pantry and fridge so things wouldn't spoil. I have a tub of food that still needs to find a home. It's hard to put that one away so I'll work on it in due time.
I also did the photo shoot of my mom's place . It will largely be private for family viewing only, however here are a couple shots that touched me.
My mom's soft and pretty bed was still unmade and it was perfectly her in every way. We are two peas in a pod on this front. :)
There's a massive old Bible on top of her antique sewing machine in her bedroom. Both are beautiful.
We have a very busy week ahead of us so it's nice to have this day to reflect. Reality has started to set in so I'm glad we took the day to just... remember.
I've been receiving alot of incredible support type comments on FJI, alongside awesome suggestions on how to hang on to those special memories of my mom. So while bustling around home, my mind has wandered around ALOT, wanting to think of creative ways to hold on to something special.
One of the best bits of advice ever was to not rush the 'cleaning up' process. Take your time, then select something that was all about mom or held her fragrance. I will be thinking of that when I return to her place to find things for the funeral memory table.
farm inspired vignette I created at mom's
I also had another brainstorm. I'm going to bring the camera and tripod and start clicking. Her place hasn't been touched yet and it's as if mom is in her bedroom looking for something. Bed unmade, things strewn here and there because we're pinched for time while on our way out. I love that. So I'm going to take some shots of her home the way we remember it, for a cherished family memory.
A part of me wishes we didn't have to do a ding dang thing to her place. EVER. It would be cool to leave it as a meeting place for family functions in memory of her. I can't bear the thought right now of not having her place to gravitate towards. How empty that makes me feel! To stay home all Christmas?!? That's crazy. Can't even go there yet. I really hate this part.
Ok, back on topic. Another awesome suggestion was to collect her clothes and create something out of them. Throw pillow covers? Quilt? The sky's the limit here. I like this idea VERY much. No idea where I'd find the time for such a venture but perhaps if I hung onto some boxed favorites for another time, that would be a great start.
Oh and then there was the one about the purse! Cherish her purse and all the contents just as is. What a neat way to see where she was and what she was doing at the time. Perhaps it holds lists for shopping? Her wallet would be facinating to look back on. So many things. I can't wait to check that one out.
Easter meant alot to my mom. She always hid Easter baskets for us filled to the brim with chocolates. We found the chocolate on the counter, and her new church pictures on the dining room table, all ready to give out to the family. What a lovely memento! A current picture. Couldn't have happened at a better time.
Ok, this is starting to hurt. I'll be back. :) Thanks for the ear. If you have any other ideas on how to hold onto special memories and mementos from those we have to say goodbye to, I'd love your suggestions!
Today, on my poor little neglected off topic blog, I'm honoring my best friend and biggest fan, my mom.
Last nite, Tuesday, March 30th at 9pm, my mom collapsed while grocery shopping. And she never woke up.
God took her very suddenly, just like she did with my Dad years ago. So I go into this new phase knowing, this was indeed planned.
My mom was one sweet gal. She showed the masses what true optimism was. She was artistic, loved life, loved her family beyond measure, and her faith her highest ranking hobby. Her hugs were long, and it pained her when you left her sight. When you left her place, she always went outside and stood by the road waving until you were completely out of her line of vision. Without fail. It was always hard to leave her and her place. She just never seemed to get her fill of you. She loved her family and was the finest example of what a parent could be.
Last night at the hospital, I actually smiled through my tears as I held onto her for the last time. I was holding her leg through the soft flannel sheets because I wanted to remember her warmth. My playful thoughts were, "Mom, you stinker! What have you gone and done now?!?" My most inner thoughts were, she was finally reunited with my Dad, whom she desperately missed every single minute he was gone. They simply were a pair that belonged together. And now they are.
Yesterday had me feeling like it was a day to celebrate. Most certainly shock has taken over, but more than that, I was able to see over and beyond the fog, that THIS is where she needs to be. It was time. Even without warning for those that loved her.
How I feel today? Hour by hour. It's all one can do.
It's ok. It will be ok once we figure out the new norm. For now, I'm simply clinging to the thought that she's no longer in pain from that back of hers, she doesn't have to remember those silly meds nor does she have to wear hearing aids that never worked to her liking anyway.
And she's in the most ultimate place ever. WHAT A DAY that must be! I can't even imagine.
Between the tears that will no doubt spill, I wear a celebration hat for my Mom. Missing her desperately will come easy. So I'll continue to attempt to turn my thoughts to what SHE must be living in right now.
How I wish I could pick up that phone and ask her what her new pad is like. :) For now, I'll just have to wing it hour by hour and know she's being cared for by The Ultimate. Lucky gal.
See you soon, Mom. And Dad. My thoughts are with both of you today.