Saturday, March 27, 2010

Still Going Strong

Okay, I'm not sure why I'm still losing weight since my October 2009 changes to my bad eating habits but I won't rock the boat much.  Usually whatever diet plan I start works great for a couple of weeks and then I hit a plateau and sometimes a month or so and I'm still sitting there not a pound lost so naturally I give up and put back on even more this time.

Well it's just about 6 months and I'm still on the downtrend and sometimes only half a pound a week but I guess slower is better and also I'm learning better eating habits even if it is with regular foods, sometimes not as diet conscious as I should be.  BUT the big thing is I'm still pretty much Pepsi-free and definitely no diet Pepsi -UGH!!!  Also I've limited my chocolate intake too.  Now sometimes like today I did go a might overboard but heck the Aurora gatherings are known for their food feasts and I could not resist, but only had one serving and only one of the many desserts too.
WOW we had a total of 14 quilters for MOST of the day and a meal just about up there with Christmas Potluck!!!  That was just awesome!  Well so much for my losing - I probably put on a pound or two today!!!  AND thank you all for such interest in my bobbin work landscapes demo.  I see now that my marsh ones I have to ease up on the speed so I can move along more smoothly and not have such heaviness in the reeds at least.   Much appreciated.

Okay maybe I didn't do to much damage today for when I got home I went for a walk to Zellers (bought an outfit with my gift card leftovers and $30 of my own - $45 in total) then to Safeway for some veggies and fruit and walked back to the house.  Total round trip was 5210 steps or 3.43 km and tonight walking the dogs is 0.9 km so it will be close to the 5 km I wanted to try to do each day on the weekends.  Hey I probably made the equivalent with carting home the groceries and my tote/purse!!!   AND the good news is I'm back into size 12 again - it's been YEARS since I've been there!!!  LOL!

Hmmm at this rate there should be major changes to me by June, my next checkup, and I sure hope I don't shock the Dr too much!  LOL!  All I can say is I FEEL REALLY GOOD!!!

Sunday, March 21, 2010

Recent Life Changes

I've received some emails on my recent weight loss and some have asked what diet etc I'm on.  Well none this time around.  Yes I too have tried diets and even Weight Watchers but as soon as you return to your normal food POOOOOF all is lost and more gained too boot! So after my diabetis scare in October I've decided I better change my eating habits and this is how I've done it so far.

1. before October (one year exactly) I decided to cut out second helpings unless it was a small amount of something very special and only rarely - I'd lost 7 pounds - then the checkup

2. from October onwards I decided to cut back on heaping plates and just eating sensible portions and cutting out ongoing snacking

3. from October onwards decided to spend my lunch hours for a brisk walk (not during the colder days tho)

4. also since October I've cut out my daily binges of Pepsi and regular urges for chocolate bars/candies

5. I tried to replace regular Pepsi with diet but hate the taste so save the regular canned Pepsi for when I do go out and have it as a treat (6 times since October) and I do have the squat cans in my fridge for whenever I do get the urge at home, but so far that hasn't been a problem

6. I've restricted the chocolate binges with small portions periodically and even selected Diabetic chocolates and even cut back on the chips and dips too

7. I also recently met with a dietitian and we went over my food intake, my supplements, my exercise (or lack of) and also checked my blood sugar which was perfect at 5.2 midway between meals.  She said basically I was doing it all right except my amounts of groups of foods so off and needed adjusting - which I'm trying.

8. also the dietitian guided me to the website Dietitians of Canada which has an eaTracker system that I use for my daily food, supplements and exercise logging and it gives me an assessment of how I'm doing right down to my BMI which is bad right now!!!  It also has a Recipe Analyzer but as yet I've not used it.

9. Now I'm trying to include weekend walks and today was my first long distance brisk walk and with Rand McNally I figured out the distance - just over 5 km within 60 minutes!!!

10. AND now I've bought myself a digital weigh scale and will try and check it weekly at the same time - naturally I couldn't resist trying it out a couple of times this week and yes I'm still going down!!!

My next Dr checkup is in June and I'm very curious to see how well I do on this plan and hope there is a major difference and for once he's pleased with my efforts!!! I definitely know that I am!!!

So being a statistical clerk during the day, I enjoy the aspect of my own Excel file tracking it all and hopefully will have major results by my checkup in June and the proof for the Dr here too. Now I presume there is something equivalent for the USA or other countries, if not check the Canadian site out anyways.

Garden Critters Postcards

Okay I've finally got caught up on my this FunFriendly postcard swap and they are mailed today too.  I don't know how I missed this "Garden Critters" swap as I know I'd have signed up for it ASAP as I had my favourite idea for them - my tatted dragonfly and butterflies - thankfully they let me in!!!  Thanks girls and then I had to goof up and fall behind again!!!  SORRY!!!

Anyways, the tatting finally was completed Thursday and then over the weekend I assembled the fronts with some large sequin flowers and beads, printed off the backs (yep got ink finally into my printer), sandwiched the postcards and today I satin stitched all around.  Yep I like them even though they don't portray the garden scene I first envisioned, but the tatted "flys" did not show up like they do on this impressionistic type fabric so I changed plans in the end.

For Jo F, Joy A, Wendy G and Eva G
Extra #389

Now onto my other crazy patch blocks and hopefully make some headway on them this week.

Friday, March 19, 2010

Assiniboine River Flooded

Now this is only 6 days after my fall and 5 days after those 24 hour photos!!!  Now relax I used the tele function and did not get as close as the pictures seem!  Hmmmmm is there really a riverwalk below this water - and the crest is a ways away yet too?  Yes there definitely is (and it happens like twice a year for weeks on end every year) along with about two feet of sloped riverbank!!!  I can’t believe this – it came up so fast and weeks sooner than originally forecasted.  I think in my next life I will not live anywhere near low lands!!!

I think it was Wednesday when I went for a walk over the bridge to Safeway for some goodies and was shocked to see the Assiniboine River level up close to the quarry rocks that I was walking on on Saturday – the river was like 3 feet below and under ice. Well guess these spring like temps sure speeded up the thaw and I’ve heard it’s caught many south of the US/Canada border unawares too. Timing totally off this year. BUT the good news is it’s not supposed to be a really bad flood situation this year – let’s hope and pray for that being so!!!

Thursday, March 18, 2010

My Winter/Christmas DYBs are HOME!!!

Yes my last set of "do your own blocks" round robin within the CQI group is home safe and sound and I could not have asked for anything differently done on them.  They are all just lovely, even the plastic charms - they are part and parcel of the blocks and they are staying!!!  Again thank you to Karrin, Rita, Lisa and Margreet for your lovely stitching and creativity towards my hopefully new holiday hanger for 2010!!!  Well that is if I get my act together and eventually embellish my block and then get them all assembled.

Okay here are all the blocks by the girls and you can see the block I've to work on.  Now wouldn't you bet on the one I didn't really care for in the group of six being the one coming home for my attention???  Just too funny!

Now here are the individual blocks for a better look see:

Karrin H's

Rita C's

Lisa B's

Margreet de R's

Joint RR block

Windy Winnipeg

SHEESH talk about the possibility of getting blown to OZ today! I'm glad I didn't change into my light track jacket or I'd have froze out there, it's getting quite nippy and I made it back before any rain started, but it was getting DARK out there. Those gusts are up to 48 km/hr and just about blew me into traffic on Osborne St and I kept to the inside edge of it too!!!

This morning I charged up my MP3 and then stretched my calves before starting out. I had the ABBA album to walk to and boy talk about a good beat to keep a brisk pace and I added another two blocks and kept to traffic lights for crossing instead of the one nearer to work which is uncontrolled and traffic always zooms around that corner picking up speed from the previous intersection. I even continued stepping in place at the red lights so my calves were mucho better afterwards - stretched again too.

I think I would only need to pick up a t-shirt in that wicking wear for now as the rest of me I think is OK but like Angela said it's cheaper at Zellers or Walmart but I noticed walking over loose pebbles caused my foot to rock within my current walkers so those are more important at this time.  Guess I know what I'll be looking for on Saturday!

WOW I just heard the weather and the gusts are to go up to 70 km/hr but they've changed the report and we're not expected to have snow overnight now.  We'll see.

Wednesday, March 17, 2010

Happy St. Patrick's Day to All!!!

Okay I totally forgot to wear GREEN today BUT our office does have a few appropriate decorations on display!!!  Did anyone check out Google's header today?

Boy am I ever glad I did my major walk at lunch when it wasn't so windy.  Gusts right now are up to 48 km/hr and glad it was at my back and not into my ears walking home!!!  What a difference a mere hour made - something is blowing in - actually I just heard SNOW!!!  I said winter was not finished with Manitoba just yet - it was too early for spring.

Well I walked across the bridge to Safeway to pick up Brookside chocolate covered pomegrante candies (to die for) and came home with whole grain breads, cucs, roasted turkey breast sandwich meats and individual fruit juices all on sale!!! WOW! Okay so the candy aren't diet related, but I am going to restrict myself to maybe every third day to have 6 only. I'll let you know if it works or not - but I'm sure gonna try.

I can tell you that if this brisk paced walking continues into the summer I'm going to perish from being overheated! I'm too warm now and the other day I had my spring jacket only! My girlfriend emailed me about Zellers & Walmart having the perspiration wicking sports clothing for $18-20 a piece so I'm gonna have to check it out as I can tell you that regular clothes are gonna kill me never mind stinky for the rest of the afternoon in the office - which I can not tolerate. And if I'm not cool I can see myself skipping walking which is not good since I'm still loosing (another lb this week) and feeling lots better. Now that's too fast in my opinion and not sure why except for the increased pace of my walk, as I've been heating more except in balanced moderation and have added an afternoon and evening snack of something like trail mix to keep me from munching other stuff. Hmmmmm.

It's too bad I don't care for mall walking as that might help with the heat - maybe I'll have to go walk around inside the Leg Bldg???  Who knows but by summer I'll have figured out something.  All I know is I need more protective walkers on my feet!!!

Sunday, March 14, 2010

Alzheimer Stitching Day!

Well I wasn't sure if I'd be able to help out with these 36" square lap quilts or not but I still went.  Yep my right side is sore and my elbow is skinned and burns like crazy along with my shoulder.  Don't know if that rotator cuff will ever heal with these mishaps!!!  {shaking my head} 

But I (along with a small box of upholstery and cotton fabrics) joined both my nieces and other ladies at the Riverview Community Centre and helped stitch up 6 tops between Pat and I.  Audrey was cutting squares the whole time and I'm sure she'll be aching tomorrow as that is hard work and I stayed away from it totally.  It was truly interesting and challenging stitching up these various fabrics but gosh I can sure say they made up some very interesting touchie feely quilts for them to fondle.  We had a lovely potluck lunch then returned to the afternoon full of stitching. 

And only once did I clip my bruised elbow into my sewing machine which naturally brought the aches to the forefront once again, Advil to the rescue.  Yep I enjoyed this stitching day and look forward to doing it once again.  I then went home and quickly packed up a large box with the rest of the upholstery, fake fur and other basic fabrics and returned to the Centre to drop it off - yep they still were there.  So that's like a banana box and a half out of my sewing room and going to a good cause - fabrics I know I would not be using and did not want to waste.  YEAH!!!

24 Hours Later!!!

OMGG now I know that Mom my precious Angel and the good Lord were both looking out for me yesterday!!!  I could not believe it - there was open water just past the snowbank I fell onto and I'm sure that if it had not held me the ice that was there was probably precarious!

See exactly 24 hours after my spill onto the river off the Riverwalk I took my camera and walked Assiniboine to the pathway down to the Donald St entrance to check out where and why I fell.  It's still a mystery to me as there definitely is nothing major to have caused that unless I had some vertigo from walking that edge!  Anyways I took some pictures, the first is a view of the river walk (was more clay pea soupie yesterday) with the ledge well inside of the rock riverbed except for this dock area where it drops down to water.  The next picture shows the close up of the open drain that is always marked even in winter as dangerous area - you can just see the black hole between the dock and bridge in the first picture.  And the third picture shows you the dock area about 3 feet down from the ledge to where the ice was yesterday and the fourth is the place I fell off from - like 16" wide or so and really nothing to trip over that I can see.

All I can say is "THANK YOU LORD for that snowbank"!!!

Saturday, March 13, 2010

An Ouchie Walk!!!

Okay, I had great intentions to enjoy the spring-like conditions outside by taking a walk to the Forks, walk around there and then return home shortly afterwards.  Honest!!!  I know I did not plan on what actually happened, just changed my plans afterwards to sort of drown my sorrows so to speak!

Well I decided (against my better judgement obviously) to make use of the riverwalk before the spring thaw floods it till after June or so.  When I first started out the pathway was like slimy clay topping and the quarry rock edging was mostly dry separating the pathway and the rocky base to the river.  So DUMMY here gingerly crossed the slimey pathway to this rock edge and carefully walked on that till halfway to the Forks - actually the Water Taxi dock just west of the Donald St bridge before misfortune met me.

I don't know what happened, the rocks were edged with cement marking the dock edge, all was dry and double the width and no one near me or any distraction around me so I don't know WHY I fell.  But fall I did and sort of sideways off the ledge and onto a snowbank still there ontop of the just breaking up river ice.  At first I was not scared, just dazed, as I badly hurt my already damaged right arm/shoulder grazing it on the way off the ledge.  This snowbank cushioned my fall but as I started to get up I realized I was sinking - now I'm sure but I think I was a way up yet from the unstable ice but I realized this was the deepest part as it was the boat dock - not just the angled riverbed.  So quickly I got back up onto the ledge and then walked gingerly to the bench opposite and sat until my stomach settled.  Then I checked out my elbow which was paining me badly and my fingers/wrist tightening aching too.  Well no mark on my jacket elbow nor my long sleeved top but there's a two inch scrape bleeding and movement sore - HMMMM!

Now what to do - I'm halfway to the Forks - do I return home and tend to this scrape or do I continue to the Forks and see if they have first aid to dress it up?  Well it was nice out and my stomach was settling some so onto the Forks I went BUT this time I went back up to the road and used the sidewalk.  Yes Security had some cream and bandaides to protect it some.  That's when I decided I needed a drink and went to Muddy Waters tavern and enjoyed nachos and ceasars for my supper before walking back.

By this time my shoulder and back were tightening up and I took an icepack to bed for a couple of hours.  What a waste for my Saturday and I'm still not sure if I can tat or stitch as it's my right hand/arm that still hurts.  No I'm not going to waste my weekend sitting in urgent care as I know I can move and nothing is broken - just sore.  I still don't know why I went down!!!  See I KNOW exercise is a hazard to my life!!!  LOL!

Lovely Day!!!

WOW talk about a SUPER SPRING like day here in Winnipeg - I've even opened the window for some fresh air in my apartment.  Wonder how long it will last or if Mother Nature still has some snow/winter for us Manitoban's before long?  Anyways it is awesome and as soon as I have my lunch I'm going for a walk to the Forks for a visit and then back to continue stitching.

This morning was our Guild quilting meeting and I had various items to drop off for a friend, my sister and myself and also pick up info for the Quilt Reflections quilt show coming up April 9th to 11th here in Winnipeg.  During this meeting I was working on my tatted dragonflies and had many compliments on the process and I think interest in my fabric postcards that will feature some of my tatting that will be in the Boutique too. 

Then to my SURPRISE I received a package from a fellow quilter that I admire her stitched projects and creativity whenever showcased.  Well she brought me in a vest that she had made but does not want anymore and THOUGHT I could use it for my projects - like cut it up!  Now I didn't have a very good look at it except that I saw olive green fabric so thought HMMMMM but then out of the bag came this book and WELL that for sure is a keeper as I don't have this one, but have borrowed it from the Libraries many times.  So a very heartwarming hug was given and hopefully I was not too rough on tiny Pat L, but I truly appreciated your generosity and for thinking of me.

Now since getting home I pulled out the vest and lo and behold it fits me and I will not be cutting it up - might even be showcasing it at the Quilt Show, you never know!  I like it very much.  Just lovely and definitely wearable.

Thursday, March 11, 2010

ATC - Tatted

Okay, not sure why I did this to myself but our small CQ Friends group from Australia is getting woken up some with an ATC swap - Flowers and Leaves.  I could not resist and thought I could easily tat myself some flowers and add a butterfly and embellish with embroidery etc. - well these are only 2.5 x 3.5 inches so how hard will that be???

Yeah right!!!  First off the flower's pattern is new to me and giving me grief trying to make them small enough so they don't overpower the ATC - then I just gave up and tried something else.  Yes there is some tiny embroidered petals on the bottom seam and they are being visited by my now familiar dragonfly.  Well it's kinda overpowered the ATC but I like it and I hope my friends like their's too.

Now back to my FF Garden Critters postcard swap!!!

Nicki Lee's Blog Give-Away

Well I can sure tell you that I LOVE this gal's hand dyed Venice laces and have bought some in the past and I find it hard to actually use them!  LOL!  So you can say I was totally THRILLED to see she has a lace and CQ book giveaway on her blog this month.  Go check it out along with her newly opened up RavioLee Dreams, her Etsy store - WOW!!!  I wish you loads of fun and many more like me that are willing to expand their CQing stash with your pretties!

Tuesday, March 09, 2010

Interesting Day!

Well I finally had my "dietitian" meeting today and was quite impressed with Liz!  First off she was ready and waiting for me, then checked my blood sugar 5.2 at 3:30 pm which is great for midmeal time and then took my weight which is down another 3.5 pounds from a month ago.  PHEW, I thought I'd be in for it as this weekend was not so great as to watching my intake at all but I did have more exercise than usual.  LOL! 

We went over some of the food groups with more concern towards diabetis, even though I'm not at that stage as yet, but maybe I can straighten myself out now and delay such from happening too soon.  So now I'm on my own to plan my meals better and also using the Dietitians of Canada website for their eaTracker tool to see how I'm doing compared to the food guide etc.  This is time consuming but maybe once I get used to it it'll go faster but basically today was well under the requirements except for "meats" which I know that is my excess area.  But my calorie intake was only 852 kcal while my energy requirement to maintain my current weight is 2071 kcal - so naturally I'll be loosing weight.  Lunch was slim today as I had a chicken ceasar salad and coffee - not my usual of a meat sandwich and veggies.  She did say that my initial cutting out Pepsi and drastically reducing my sweet intake along with cutting out second helpings and snacking has probably made the most impact to weight loss and will continue until I hit my first plateau then it may be a bit of a struggle. 

I'm just amazed that I'm still loosing - guess it just goes to show that "cutting back" will make a difference too!  So it will be interesting to see how I do when I have more groceries here etc.

Thursday, March 04, 2010

My Tatted Butterflies!

Well talk about an honour my co-worker, Terri, just heaped on me!!! (nicely that is)

See last week she asked if I would make some sparkly butterflies for her – I said I’d check my stash of cottons and see what I come up with. The few I made were blogged earlier and she picked two tatted with an iridescent braid and a large bead for the body. She was very pleased with them and when I asked what she was going to do with them she smiled and hemmed and hawed and I thought she’ll let me know when she’s decided.

WELL this morning I walked into the office (she’s working only part time here) and by her desk a couple of times before my eye spotted her lovely desk display!!! See she used a dark fabric background, attached my tatted butterflies and added rhinestones helter skelter and framed them. JUST LOVELY!!! They have been garnering attention from passers by off and on this morning and I can even see one from my desk along with the orchid plant (not real though).

Wednesday, March 03, 2010

Update on my CQd Heart Block

I remember sending this block out in the SewBuds group but this is a more relaxed rotational group and I kinda forgot about it, so was THRILLED when a picture was posted.

The lower embellishment was by Candi (and it's tough to be the first one on a block so she did a LOVELY job of it!!!  Then the upper left embellishment is by Katie and I can't wait until the block is completed and home so I can check out these flowers - very interesting my dear!!!

This is the third of what I'm hoping to be nine heart blocks for my "hearts by friends" wall hanging one day!  I think I'll have to get another heart block stitched up and into the system (not sure which group) soon or this may be a long way off before assembling!!!

Tuesday, March 02, 2010

Something Different in Tatting!

Yep finally I've found a couple of patterns my level of expertise can tackle - that is after the first goof up and started again a bit wiser!!!  LOL!
I LOVE my Four Leaf Clover (pattern by Ellen Lai, Sep 2008) and am going to try making it again but with the #30 varigated green this time for a bit smaller results.

Then I wanted a flower but didn't have a clue how to start - just knew what I wanted it to look like.  Well I pulled out my Big Book of Tatting and lo and behold there's the Daisy Chain pattern with the daisy motif right there!!! 
Same thing I'm going to try this now with #30 thread and hope it turns out a bit smaller than the #20 and then I'm off to finishing some postcards and ATCs for swapping!!!

Monday, March 01, 2010

Another CQd RR Block Finished

Yes I've finally moved on a SewBuds crazy patch block from last summer, now just one more and then I'm totally caught up with tardy blocks in my possession!!!  I guess deadlines are good so maybe I'll have to self-impose a two month target for this group for myself!!!

OK here is Dorothy's block and I had ideas popped to mind as soon as it arrived and I jotted that down right away - good thing considering.  So first I the beaded paisley on the preprinted fabric. See I had bought this beaded braided trim but knew I’d not use it as is so spent some time sorting the various beads and stitched the braid by itself in the lower right corner awaiting embellishing. The beaded paisley was surrounded with Neon Rays ribbon in colonial knots.  Then I worked a Very Velvet bullion knot rose on the adjoining seam with Neon Rays ribbon the vine, fern and lazy daisy leaves and added some matching rosebuds in bullion knots to finish off.

Now I added to Margaret P’s bird patch two matching tatted butterflies BUT only with pins – these can be removed. I was not sure if I should add to someone’s patch or not.

Then I’d received the OK to try and stitch Jane’s lovely hatching - so that filled the patch below the braid in #12 perle cotton hand dye from Yarnplayer and then added tiny gold metallic beads to the centres. It was finished off with Japanese Buttonhole Silk #72 for lazy daisy leaves on sides.

So now it's winging it's way for the next in rotation to work on it - Candi!