Monday, August 24, 2009

Just for fun...

I got this from Tea's blog.

The BBC believes most people will have only read 6 of the 100 books here... how do your reading habits stack up?
Instructions: Copy this onto your blog. Look at the list and put an 'x' after those you have read. !

1 Pride and Prejudice - Jane Austen
2 The Lord of the Rings - JRR Tolkien X
3 Jane Eyre - Charlotte Bronte
4 Harry Potter series - JK Rowling X
5 To Kill a Mockingbird - Harper Lee X
6 The Bible
7 Wuthering Heights - Emily Bronte
8 Nineteen Eighty Four - George Orwell X
9 His Dark Materials - Philip Pullman
10 Great Expectations - Charles Dickens
11 Little Women - Louisa M Alcott
12 Tess of the D’Urbervilles - Thomas Hardy
13 Catch 22 - Joseph Heller
14 Complete Works of Shakespeare
15 Rebecca - Daphne Du Maurier
16 The Hobbit - JRR Tolkien X
17 Birdsong - Sebastian Faulk
18 Catcher in the Rye - JD Salinger X
19 The Time Traveler’s Wife - Audrey Niffenegger X
20 Middlemarch - George Eliot
21 Gone With The Wind - Margaret Mitchell X
22 The Great Gatsby - F Scott Fitzgerald X
23 Bleak House - Charles Dickens
24 War and Peace - Leo Tolstoy
25 The Hitch Hiker’s Guide to the Galaxy - Douglas Adams
26 Brideshead Revisited - Evelyn Waugh
27 Crime and Punishment - Fyodor Dostoyevsky
28 Grapes of Wrath - John Steinbeck X
29 Alice in Wonderland - Lewis Carroll X
30 The Wind in the Willows - Kenneth Grahame X
31 Anna Karenina - Leo Tolstoy
32 David Copperfield - Charles Dickens
33 Chronicles of Narnia - CS Lewis X
34 Emma-Jane Austen
35 Persuasion - Jane Austen
36 The Lion, The Witch and The Wardrobe - CS Lewis X
37 The Kite Runner - Khaled Hossein
38 Captain Corelli’s Mandolin - Louis De Bernieres
39 Memoirs of a Geisha - Arthur Golden
40 Winnie the Pooh - AA Milne X
41 Animal Farm - George Orwell X
42 The Da Vinci Code - Dan Brown
43 One Hundred Years of Solitude - Gabriel Garcia Marquez X
44 A Prayer for Owen Meaney - John Irving X
45 The Woman in White - Wilkie Collins
46 Anne of Green Gables - LM Montgomery
47 Far From The Madding Crowd - Thomas Hardy
48 The Handmaid’s Tale - Margaret Atwood
49 Lord of the Flies - William Golding X
50 Atonement - Ian McEwan
51 Life of Pi - Yann Martel
52 Dune - Frank Herbert X
53 Cold Comfort Farm - Stella Gibbons
54 Sense and Sensibility - Jane Austen
55 A Suitable Boy - Vikram Seth
56 The Shadow of the Wind - Carlos Ruiz Zafon
57 A Tale Of Two Cities - Charles Dickens
58 Brave New World - Aldous Huxley X
59 The Curious Incident of the Dog in the Night - Mark Haddon
60 Love In The Time Of Cholera - Gabriel Garcia Marquez X
61 Of Mice and Men - John Steinbeck X
62 Lolita - Vladimir Nabokov X
63 The Secret History - Donna Tartt
64 The Lovely Bones - Alice Sebold X
65 Count of Monte Cristo - Alexandre Dumas
66 On The Road - Jack Kerouac
67 Jude the Obscure - Thomas Hardy
68 Bridget Jones’s Diary - Helen Fielding X
69 Midnight’s Children - Salman Rushdie
70 Moby Dick - Herman Melville
71 Oliver Twist - Charles Dickens
72 Dracula - Bram Stoker X
73 The Secret Garden - Frances Hodgson Burnett
74 Notes From A Small Island - Bill Bryson
75 Ulysses - James Joyce
76 The Inferno – Dante
77 Swallows and Amazons - Arthur Ransome
78 Germinal - Emile Zola
79 Vanity Fair - William Makepeace Thackeray
80 Possession - AS Byatt
81 A Christmas Carol - Charles Dickens X
82 Cloud Atlas - David Mitchell
83 The Color Purple - Alice Walker X
84 The Remains of the Day - Kazuo Ishiguro
85 Madame Bovary - Gustave Flaubert
86 A Fine Balance - Rohinton Mistry
87 Charlotte’s Web - EB White X
88 The Five People You Meet In Heaven - Mitch Albom
89 Adventures of Sherlock Holmes - Sir Arthur Conan Doyle
90 The Faraway Tree Collection - Enid Blyton
91 Heart of Darkness - Joseph Conrad
92 The Little Prince - Antoine De Saint-Exupery X
93 The Wasp Factory - Iain Banks
94 Watership Down - Richard Adams X
96 A Town Like Alice - Nevil Shute
97 The Three Musketeers - Alexandre Dumas
98 Hamlet - William Shakespeare X
99 Charlie and the Chocolate Factory - Roald Dahl X
100 Les Miserables - Victor Hugo

I got 34.

Friday, August 21, 2009

Down a couple pounds

and happy to report it. I think it has helped for me to replace my final meal of the day with a soy protein shake, rather than the apple with peanut butter or homemade protein bar I had been having. I may have to go back to the homemade protein bar for a couple days during my vacation next week. I'm going to stay abstinent the entire vacation, but opt for my yummiest clean meals. :) We'll see how it goes.

Hope everyone is having a great day!

Saturday, August 15, 2009

I had a feeling...and I was right. : (

Not even a half pound in the last two weeks. Boo hiss. So, I think I am going to go back to weighing in more often - maybe once a week - because weighing less doesn't seem to be helping. I've also decided to follow Tony's plan to a tee. Go figure. I know that's what I need to do to see the results I want.

Fact is, I have more incentive than ever to achieve my goals. I had a business meeting with my producer on Friday and we set the date for MY showcase, when I am the featured artist. October 24. We also decided on a holiday concert at a BIG local venue, so that means I have just a couple months to get this body TIGHT. I'm hoping that I will be under 150 by my showcase (that means 15 pounds in 10 weeks...doable, but aggressive, considering how long I've been hovering between 160 and 170). And I'm planning to be closer to 140 by the time we get on that big stage and set off on our tour. Tour!!! Yikes! How exciting is that???

I'm not freaking out. I'm getting fired up. Big difference.

Friday, August 14, 2009

Tomorrow's the big day...

...and I am so nervous. Last time I weighed in was August 1, right at the end of TOM, and so it has been about 2 weeks. Sometimes I feel like I look different and clothes are fitting differently, and people are saying I look skinnier, etc. Other times (like right now) I look down at my tummy and it looks totally bloated.

What if I haven't lost any weight at all???

Wednesday, August 12, 2009

Holy progress, Batman!!!

So, as you all well know I am only weighing twice a month these days. (For those of you awaiting my next weight update with baited breath, it is actually Saturday, not Friday. Boo hoo...) But a dear friend (and fellow Dreambody Diva - the infamous Jacquie P), recommended that I check in on my measurements and bodyfat to get an idea of my progress. I also finally took those long-awaited pics for Tony.

First of all, I was really happy with the pics! Muscles are starting to pop out! (And no, I'm not going to post them until I am well into the 150s, so don't even ask...) But the most exciting news is that (a) I have lost 1.5 inches off my abs since the last time I measured and (b) according to the YMCA bodyfat calculation method, my bodyfat is 26%!!! I am SOOOO excited about this!

That alone is progress, no matter what that dastardly scale says. Yee ha!

Tuesday, August 11, 2009

Three days and counting...

Dang - has it been three days already? How did so much time go by since I last posted?

Well, so let me tell you what's going on with me. I have written two new original songs in the last two weeks, so I'm really happy about that. I will be showcasing them on September 12 at a club here in Philly (if you want more information about that, hit me up on e-mail and I'll let you know where and when!). So, now it's just up to my band to learn the songs and add their own particular flair to it. Fingers crossed, these songs will be HOT!

In other news, I feel like I'm doing pretty well on the fitness front. I've been eating fairly clean and healthy for about a month and a half now, and am still hitting it hard in the gym. I had a really good tri workout yesterday and today was legs. No presses, but I have to admit I enjoy my squats, yo. Tomorrow is chest. I do like a good chest workout. Plus, I have plans to run a couple times this week, so I'm happy to report that I'll be getting in my extra cardio, too.

Wouldn't you think that would translate into a nice drop on the scale on Friday? Yeah, me too. I do have to start taking pics and measurements regularly, too, though - Tony asked me to - because this will give me a more well-rounded picture than just what that stupid scale says. (Oh, sorry, Scale. I didn't mean to call you stupid. Please be nice to me on Friday. Don't be mad, Scale...don't be mean...)

Anyhoo - I'll let you know how that goes. Three days and counting...

Sunday, August 9, 2009

Down, but not out!

So, I have to say that this not weighing in more than twice a month is hard...hard...HARD, especially after weighing once or twice a day. I'm still holding fast to my commitment, though, and I'm hopeful that I will be happy on Friday with what the scale says, because for the most part I have been pretty spot on with exercise and eating.

Ok, until this weekend. Friday night DH and I went on our first date night in a long time, and I went ahead and decided to loosen things up a bit. I didn't go crazy - just had an open-faced turkey cheese burger and about a 1/2 serving of waffle fries. Came home and had a mixture of peanut butter, oatmeal, protein powder and cocoa powder. Pretty yummy. But yesterday was another story. Last night I went dancing for 3 hours, which is definitely a good thing, except that I gave in pretty quickly when my friends suggested that the perfect post-dancing activity is going to the diner for chicken fingers and fries. Doh!!!

I would like to know whose metabolism, exactly, I think I have? One of the many size zero twenty-somethings who were in the club last night? Because I have never been able to eat late at night without consequences. So, I am not getting any extra credit for all my lovely dancing, because I basically offset it with the late night munch fest.

Anyway, that's how I'm doing. Still journaling. Too tired to go to the gym today and too tired really to do much of anything except watch my kids play dress up and log my food and read and relax. Let's hope that's exactly what I get to do. (Oh Lord, they're arguing... AGAIN.)

Will hit the gym HARD tomorrow and all week. Hope everyone else is having a great day!

Thursday, August 6, 2009

Jesus, take the WHEEL!

I was chatting with a friend today, who was struggling with a situation in her life, and I was relating to her...sharing with her how things have become so much easier since I really recognized that God has the best plan for my life and I only get in my own way. I thought I would share these musings with you folks, my friends, and with myself as I go on with this journey, because this will be a helpful image to hold on to later when I think I have the best plan for my life, better than what God has planned, even.

"Imagine if I called and said, "I want to take you on a trip. You just relax and look out the window - I'll let you know when we get there." You wouldn't be over in the passenger's seat going, "Are we there yet? Where are we now? How soon will we get there? Is this it? Are we there now?" You would just be chatting, sipping on whatever drink, changing the radio to a good song, checking out what you can see out the window... I try to think of it the same way. God is the best friend you've ever had and is taking you on the best trip.

So, why do we always wanna open the door and jump out on the side of the road? Jerk the wheel to the right or the left? Why not just relax and let Him take the wheel?

Remember this?

Tuesday, August 4, 2009

MY dreams are coming true!

I am finally becoming the person I always longed to be. This past weekend was such a wild ride, I was nervous about it and had no idea what to expect.

First, I had a showcase on Saturday night and for the first time in my history as a singer/performer (I have sung in wedding bands for over ten years), I was performing one of my own original songs with a full band backing me up. It was so emotional! I sang a song I wrote right after my father died, called "Believe in Yourself" and people kept coming up to me saying how much it inspired them, moved them almost to tears. What was perhaps even more amazing was that the other artists that were being showcased were amazing! I felt so fortunate and blessed (and flattered) to be on the same ticket!!! It gives me so much hope and inspiration to become the best artist I can be. I've started identifying myself as an original artist for the first time in my life. On Sunday, I started the morning by singing the national anthem at the triathlon in which I was participating. The race organizer was thanking me for helping them out and I told them I had done a showcase the day before. They said, "Will we be able to say we knew you when?" And I said, "Hey, who knows? Maybe next year you'll be able to say you have a Grammy award-winning artist singing the national anthem for you!" (And yes, that would be me.)

So, that brings me to Sunday. The other area where I'm realizing my dreams is in that I am becoming an athlete and life coach. I have people coming to me, asking me to help them achieve their goals. That is what I have been focusing on manifesting all year - a career as a life coach, singer, writer, athlete. It may seem like a lot, especially since I also have my own consulting business which takes care of our mortgage and all our other bills, but you know what? God has never given me more than I can handle. Is it my fault I can handle so much?

Stay tuned. This journey I am on will be interesting, if nothing else!

Sunday, August 2, 2009


OK - I was a little worried when I woke up this morning to the sound of thunder, but they didn't cancel the race so I went ahead and headed down. It was pouring as we stuffed my bike in my friend's car so we were soaked before we even hit the road. It was thundering and lightning (lightning-ing?) as we walked our bike from where we parked to the race start. It took them an hour to figure out whether they were going to cancel the swim (they did), and we were biking in the rain, running as lightning bolts seemed to crack right down on the race course in front of us, but we finished!!! In under 2 hours! Not only that, but for the first time, my husband made it down with the kids before I finished so they were there, cheering me on.

It was AWESOME! My phone got soaked (and is dead) and hubby's iPod touch got soaked (and is also dead), but it was really worth it. And now? I'm exhausted. Had a semi-yummy breakfast following the race, and am now back on plan with clean eating the rest of the day. Is it 8 pm yet? I cannot wait to go to bed. (Did I mention I also had a showcase last night and didn't get home till after 10 pm? Sigh...sometimes the blessings in my life are so abundant they're spilling slightly over the sides.)