Making Progress

Worth the work

My husband has finished decorating our eldest daughter’s bedroom this week. The decorating didn’t take long, once we had sorted everything out and packed it all away. We bought a lovely sofa bed and some very minimal furniture just to finish it off. I decided not to put all her bits and bobs back out, but just a few selected items, to make it look like her space. It looks so much tidier and much more grown up than it did before.  She’s due home on Saturday, just overnight so I’m hoping that she really likes it.

Three Dresses Later

After much searching, I’ve finally found the perfect dress. It’s the third one I’ve bought. The other two were okay, but just not quite what I was looking for. However I’ve got this one now and it is everything I wanted. I also found a lovely pair of shoes in my daughter’s wardrobe, which she bought for prom. They’ve been boxed up ever since, but go really well with the dress, so I’ve decided to borrow them.

The other dresses will come in handy anyway as I’ve got my youngest daughters eighteenth birthday and my eldest daughters graduation, both in the same week in July, so will need something to wear for these.

Still going strong

I’m still managing to stay off the coffee, even though we are a couple of weeks in to Lent now. It’s really helping me to stay off the biscuits and cakes too, which can only be a good thing. I’ve managed to do plenty of walking this week and a couple of runs, so that’s helping me to stay on the straight and narrow. I walked nine miles with my friend this morning. This is as part of the training sessions for Walk the Walk (moonwalk) which is getting closer. We’ll have to do some longer walks as the weeks go on, but we are really pleased with our progress so far.

 

 

A work in progress

I am what I am

As you’ve probably realised already, I am not a slim lady. I am overweight, a larger lady, although one of my friends once described me as “rubenesque”. Afterwards she came and apologised to me as she felt that I might be offended. I have to say that I wasn’t. I am aware of how I look and sometimes this bothers me and I decide to do something about it. Other times I feel that I am who I am and my confidence in other areas of my life makes me forget about my weight. It is because of this that I have been a “yo yo dieter” for most of my adult life. I am like a lot of women with a weight problem and have tried all sorts of ridiculous diets. I’ve spent a fortune on books, foods and gadgets in an effort to lose weight and keep it off. I have wasted far too much time in the quest to have the perfect body, which in all honesty I’m unlikely to achieve and which probably doesn’t exist.

Will this year be different?

This year I am trying to put a stop to this and eat healthily and exercise because I want to and because I enjoy it, rather than spending a few weeks starving myself followed by weeks of just eating far too much. We are now 6 weeks into the new year and I am still doing well. Normally I’ve given up by now. However, I’m not saying I’ve been perfect. I have enjoyed nights out, I’ve had meals out, followed by dessert. The one thing I haven’t done so far is to just to completely blow it all because I’ve gone off track once.

The other thing that is really helping is running. I never thought I’d ever say that!  When I say running, I’m not talking about sprinting, but a slow plod, a jog, sometimes interspersed with a walk and a slightly faster jog.  I’ve always enjoyed walking, but I have continued with run together and have also been doing parkrun on a Saturday morning. The support of these groups is amazing and I am improving my fitness as well as losing a bit of weight, which can only be good. Long may it continue.

How could I be offended?

I accept that I am not model slim, but it is more important to be healthy and happy. At this moment in time I am remaining positive that I will continue to lose some weight, but living life for now, rather than waiting until then.

I looked at some of Ruben’s paintings on the internet. They involve some very shapely women, along with some religious painting and slightly scary artwork.

As a matter of interest the urban dictionary has the following definition of rubenesque:

“Applied to a woman who has similar proportions to those in paintings by the Flemish painter Peter Paul Ruben; attractively plump; a woman who is alluring or pretty but without the waif-like body or athletic build presently common in media.”

How could anyone be offended by that?

 

 

 

One week down

A good start to the year

So the first week of the new year has gone quite well. I’ve managed to stick to the healthy eating plan. I joined Slimming World as I know that this has worked for me in the past, but my staying power when the chips (or cakes) are down is not so good. I went for an induction at the local gym. My youngest daughter already goes there and she asked me to go with her, so this was a good incentive. I was also persuaded to join a local run together group and surprisingly really enjoyed running in the cold and dark. I’ve been out walking most days, so all in all a good start.

Now all I have to do is keep it up!

Writing the blog is certainly helping as it means that I have to be honest with myself about whether I have kept to my goals or not.

Still planning

Looking to the future, I’ve booked another week away for later in the year and am starting to plan some fundraising events. I’m also making more plans for my birthday party in April. When I first started planning it seemed such a long way away, but now it’s only three months which is pretty scary really.

A great family weekend

My niece had her engagement party this week. It was a really great night spent with friends and family. It was so lovely to see people of all different ages having a great time dancing, karaoke singing and generally laughing and chatting together. Whilst the “older” ones amongst us took a well earned rest from the festivities and sat chatting, we watched the young folks and conversation turned to how lucky we are that our children have grown up to be such pleasant individuals and that we should be really proud of them. Despite us all having our moments of doubt, worry and frustration, they really are a decent bunch of young people. Although my friend did make the point that “that’s us, we did that” and I guess she’s right.

Time moves on

I had a fleeting visit from our eldest daughter who came home overnight to celebrate with the family for my niece’s engagement. It was lovely to have her home, but strangely  it’s quite normal for her not to be there anymore. It’s been over two years since my husband and I left her in the student halls and I went into work the next day and sobbed my heart out. Now I can wave her goodbye on the train and drive home without crying. I guess that’s progress! I may however take a small step backwards when our youngest daughter decides to leave too.

 

 

 

 

 

2017 – The year I am fifty

Just like millions of other people at this time of year, as New Years Eve approached,  I started to think about what resolutions I should make for the New Year. And, just as I have done for many years I know that I will make them and break them within a matter of days, if not sooner. So why should this year be any different?

This year I will be 50!

It’s hard to believe. It seems like only yesterday that I was running around after my two young daughters, then suddenly I turned around and there they were, women in their own right, with their own dreams and aspirations, their lives stretching ahead of them. I must admit that I panicked at first. I love my husband to death, but I did wonder what would happen when we were on our own. I never had any doubts that we have a strong relationship, but could it pass the “empty nest” test? At the moment only one has left and is in third year at University and will probably not return. The other is in the last year of sixth form, making decisions about her future.

My husband and I have already started to enjoy the freedom that grown up children bring. Having holidays and weekends away without children was pretty new to us.  I’m positive that as I head towards 50 our lives will not be the same.  Not worse, not better, just different. He’s already 50, by the way and seems undaunted by the fact.

Reflections on years gone by

I think I am very blessed.  As I have said already I have a lovely husband (almost 26 years married) and two beautiful daughters (no bias there at all). I have had a stable job for almost 27 years and could officially retire in 3 years. I think I’ve been a sensible (some would say boring!) person, but have enjoyed life, not taken too many risks and always tried to do the right thing. Planning the things I was going to do when I retire kept me looking to the future and got me out of bed on a morning.

Things changed over the last year or so. Just after Christmas 2015, very suddenly, I lost a close friend who was a year younger than me. Another close friend was diagnosed with cancer shortly afterwards. I decided that “when I retire” was no longer the time to do things, but that I should do them now.

Here’s to the future

So as I head towards 50 I started to think about the things that I could do this year to make a difference to my life and possibly to others too. I wanted different resolutions. I still need to lose weight, get fit and all those other things that I promise myself every year, but I wanted this year to be special.

I was chatting to my brother who has recently published two books and I jokingly said “I think I’ll write a book”. He suggested I write a blog and promised me it would be easy.

So this it the first of my resolutions – To write a blog. No one may ever read it, but at least I’ll have a record of what I achieved. It also means I’ll have to make sure that my life is interesting enough to have something to write about.

I already have some holiday and travel plans (watch this space) and am planning a big party for my 50th Birthday, which is in April.

Why “50 the musical”

Well I love musical theatre! I always say that if I won the lottery I would spend the money just going to the theatre. I would see all those musicals that I haven’t had the time or money to see yet.

I like to think that setting my 50th year to music and dance would make it more exciting! I’m not sure who is going to play the part of me as yet, I’ll give it some thought.

Of course I’ll be seeing some musicals this year and no doubt telling you all about them in my blog.