New Year New Site

UPDATE:  It looks like all of my previous posts have been successfully moved over here! 😀

 

Hi!  Well, here we go!  2017 is upon us….and all I want to do is curl up under a blanket and rest.  Geez.  I have the makings of a cold, and it has not come at a good time for me.  But do colds ever come at a good time? 😀

Rather than make sure I have all the kinks out of this new site, I’ve decided to go ahead and post and promote it.

I originally blogged about my health journey at www.leahs-new-ending.blogspot.com, but a few months ago I decided to try out WordPress.

I confess…it’s always kind of been a bit of a dream to actually have my blog title as a dot com as well.

So, here I am.

To me I am continuing my blogging about my health, but to some of you I am a new blog to check out.

Eventually, my hope is to be able to transfer all of my old posts to this site, but whether or not that happens I will begin blogging from here.  And what better time to do that than at the beginning of a new year.

My health is important to me and I hope to inspire people by sharing some of my story.

It’s not always pretty, there are ups and downs, but I am always honest.  The past couple of years have really thrown me for some personal loops, but one things remains…I will not give up on my health.

My life depends upon it.  😉

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Minus TEN Pounds [Again]!!

Note:  I’ve been trying to upload a video I made after my post-Thanksgiving weigh-in, but I’m having issues and I’m impatient.  So, I’ll preface this post by sharing I DID NOT gain one ounce during Thanksgiving.  I stepped on the scale to see a happy exact same weight as the week before.  It was thrilling to know I could celebrate a holiday, eating whatever I wanted in moderation, and maintain.  *super contented sigh*

Now…on to today’s news:

My honest journey on the scale this year.
This has been my journey since going back to Weight Watchers last spring.  I lost steadily at first, hitting 10 pounds lost around Memorial Day weekend and then I started gaining again.  Within 2 months I had gained back all but about 1.5 pounds of what I had lost.  
It was frustrating, but I was in the middle of moving my daughters to college, so I gave a half-hearted attempt and tried not to let it bother me.  
After they were moved and settled, and we moved in August, I decided I was in a good place to focus on my health again.  
My first goal was to lose those 10 pounds again. 
Well, here I am … as of today 191.6 — down -10.2 from my 2016 highest weight.  

Woo Hoo!!
At 202.8 my clothes were really starting to feel tight;  and these were my newly purchased size 16w. Ugh. Now they are fitting better.  Nothing is really loose, but I don’t feel as squished in them.
Reaching my first goal of losing these 10 pounds [for the 2nd time this year] gives me hope and motivation to keep going.   Glory!
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Not Worried Re: Post-Thanksgiving Scale

I’m doing something a bit different today and blogging before I get on the scale at Weight Watchers today.  Here’s why… That number may reflect some extra food I consumed, but that higher number not define how I enjoyed this past week, nor how I feel about the future of my weight loss journey. 
That number may or may not tell how I enjoyed a turkey dinner full of things I don’t normally eat, but only one plate full. 
It will not tell how much fun I had eating my warm apple pie with vanilla bean ice cream while watching “It’s a Wonderful Life” with my family Thanksgiving night. 
It may or may not tell how I enjoyed a walk with my kids between dinner and our movie, and we giggled and laughed when they got crazy taking selfies.  
It may or may not tell how I decided to get an egg white sandwich with my non-fat flat white instead of a bagel and sweetened cream cheese. 
It may or may not tell how I enjoyed my one glass of egg nog while we decorated our Christmas tree Saturday, because that is our tradition.  
And, most importantly, if that number is up it will only show that I had a few extra things I don’t normally eat, but it is not a definition of how my journey will end up.  
Today I am back on plan, and I’m pretty sure my body is ready for less greasy foods as well.  🙂  Funny how that happens.  
Now I’m off to finish getting ready for my day and playing my favorite Pandora channel – Hipster Holidays.  
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Some Thankful Thoughts

Tomorrow is Thanksgiving Day here in the United States.  It’s a day we love to celebrate things we are thankful for, spending time with family, eating and enjoying some much-needed relaxation and fun.
But first, today I will be tying up some shop ends, preparing some foods for tomorrow and getting laundry done.  
Before I get into the hustle and bustle of my day I want to share a few thankful thoughts I’m having. 
Made using Rhonna|Designs App.
First off, I’m thankful for the mercy of God to never let me go.  I’m in no ways perfect, but I do serve a perfect God who has been there with me and continues to bring guidance, comfort and correction at exactly the times I need it.  Giving my life to Jesus was the best decision I ever made. 
Putting my very newbie lettering skills to work.

I’m also thankful for this man … my husband of 21 years.  He has loved me literally through thick and thin, financially, physically (ha! Seriously though..) and emotionally.  
I’m thankful for technology, probably more this year than every before.  I’m a computer nerd and have embraced the internet and the world it opened up to me from pretty much the beginning.  
But now having technology to help me stay in touch with my kids while they’re away at college….who knew Snap Chat would be considered a ‘blessing’?  😀 
Collage of “Snaps” my daughter posted recently.  lol
And I’m grateful for this sill daughter of mine who keeps me laughing even from states away.   
And this one who is only 3.5 hours away!  It’s been fun having her come down to visit a couple times this fall. 
When I told him I’m also down the same weight he said, “Let’s take a picture!”
And then this kid…my son…who has been working hard at school and on his own health and was super pleased the other day when he realized he has lost 9 pounds since the beginning of school.  He is built more like my family and has been trying to make better choices and stay active.  
This year I’m especially grateful for what may seem a small thing to some, but has been huge for me.  Having two of my three kids leave for college, out of state, sent me into a major transition from full time stay-at-home mom to…well, I didn’t really know what.  
I decided to start an Etsy shop — Dental Floss Lane — last winter just kind of for fun and I’m pleased with how it has not only helped me learn some new things, but keeps me busy … oh and I get paid to craft!!  
My happy place … and college stockings for my girls. 
My Etsy shop isn’t my life goal fulfilled, but more of a hobby and I’m thankful and honored that people would actually purchase items I’ve made.
Lastly, but one of the most important things I’m thankful for is the hope of change.
Having always been overweight I had many moments I never thought I’d be that thin mom, or healthy mom or even a woman who could resist large helpings and tons of dessert.  
Quite honestly, I didn’t feel I deserved to be one of those people.  It’s sad, but true.
But almost eight years ago I had a spark of “What if?” and I gave it a go.  I started this blog and made two very small changes to my life — I would only drink real soda with meals and I would walk for 30 minutes three times a week — and over time I gained control over my health. 
As the weight went down, people began following and encouraging me through my blog and I continued making changes for the better.  Subsequently my emotional health improved as well.  
Even after gaining 35 of the 70 pounds back and having to work on losing that again I have found endless support and encouragement on this journey.  The little spark in me that refuses to quit is fueled by the love and support I have found online and now in Weight Watchers meetings. 
And well, I can’t say how grateful I am for the hope of change without sharing how blessed I’ve been by the support of one specific friend — a.k.a. Dr. Stephanie.  She has been one of the biggest keys in my journey.  
We’ve known each other since we were kids and this health journey has brought us to places in our relationship we never really knew we needed each other before.  She is the introvert to my extrovert and the quiet “I know.  I get it, lady.” to my “I’m never going to succeed!!”  Even before I took my journey public to my real life friends she was there supporting me and praying for me.  
I’m a blessed woman to have such hope and support in my life and to have a body that is responding well to better changes.  It’s not easy, but it’s so worth it.
And now… the chores await! 
I wish you all a safe and Happy Thanksgiving! 
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"So, Why did you come today?"

Mondays are my weigh-in days and a few upsets from the week prior, both with food situations and emotions, had me a bit of a mess as I had my morning coffee and prepared myself for my meeting. 
It was one of those times I really wanted to call someone who is following Weight Watchers and just pour out my heart.  I do have a best friend who I joke is my health therapist, but I didn’t want to  bother her.  I finally sat myself down and said, “If the scale is up, then so be it.  It’s one week and you can learn from this and move on.” 
When I walked into Weight Watchers my [fairly new] leader asked how I was and, glancing around and noticing no one was in earshot, I told her in a few short sentences how my week was a bit of a mess and I had the overwhelming fear-filled thoughts of “I’m never going to get this weight off again..” come back to haunt me Saturday night.
She simply replied, “So, why are you here?” 
I half smiled and said, “Because I’m not quitting.” 
She smiled gently and encouraged me in my train of thought.  
I went on to weigh in and was pleasantly surprised to see I was down 0.8 of a pound.  So, I went back and exclaimed to her that apparently I had done something right.*  
To which she exclaimed, “Aren’t you glad you came?!?” 
Yes.  Yes, I was.  Weight Watchers meetings for me are a therapy of sorts.  They are my Monday morning time to focus on what I’m doing and how to do it better.  They allow me to share my victories and failures and know that I’m not alone. 
I didn’t need this physical contact when I originally lost my weight, but right now I do.
Between her encouragement and your comments on how to plan for Thanksgiving –and losing almost a full pound (let’s be real..losing weight is encouraging. lol)  —  I’m encouraged that I can do this again.  
Actually, that I am doing this.  
And if I can, so can you!  Hang in there and just cling with me to that spark of “I’m not quitting.”, because that is what is going to get us through to the end.  
*Note:  “…done something right.” leads my thoughts to my ongoing beef with points vs. intuitive eating, but I’ll share more on that later.
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A "Healthy" Thanksgiving – Yay or Nay?

Do you ever find yourself be approached with an idea and rebelling against it, only to find out you already partially planned to follow that idea or you aren’t really as upset about it as you portrayed? 
I did just that this past Monday at Weight Watchers when our leader handed this worksheet out and then told us she wanted us to actually fill it out right then. 
(Pardon my pen that wasn’t dry when I folded this paper later.)
Um, my plan for Thanksgiving was to eat anything I wanted in moderation, not count any points and enjoy it like I would a vacation.  Same was the plan for my friend sitting next to me, so we joked and uttered comments under our breath about how we weren’t going to care that day.  
And then as our group began discussing the caloric cost of our meals I found myself realizing I was already planning to be careful this holiday.  I told my friend as much, adding, “I need to be quiet, because I already think I might pare down the mashed potatoes this year so I can enjoy my once-a-year treat of sweet potato casserole.”  (Which you will notice is the highest point value on my menu, before the desserts.  Thank you, sugar. )  
She laughed and said she still didn’t care, which is totally fine. 
Will I sit and measure my foods and stay within my points budget during Thanksgiving?  I really don’t know.  In the past, eating smaller portions of exactly what I want has worked well for me and that really is my goal this year as well. 
I may make it my goal to track it all, for the sake of being accountable, but I need a few more days to think on that.  I’m not committing to something I won’t do. 
My daughter has already agreed to go on a morning 5K walk (possibly a run if I can) that morning, so I’m looking forward to getting movement in prior to the cooking/eating. 
How about you?  Do you cook healthier versions of Thanksgiving traditional favorites or purposefully scale back your portions?  
Whatever you do I hope you are not stressing the holiday and food. And I will try not to stress, or rebel, either.  🙂  
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Healthy Holidays Challenge — Update #7

Better late than never… I had a sale in my Etsy shop, am still fighting a cold and so… I’m barely posting this now.  Well, that and the fact that all our challengers are on Instagram, so I only got that far in posting this past Friday. 
But for the record, because I can’t stand to skip weeks: 

  1. I will exercise for a minimum of 30 minutes, 4-5 days a week.  Yes, despite a cough that started, I got 4 walks in this week and even some weights.      
  2. I will track my food at least 6 days a week.  Nope.  I had a couple events and I planned well for the, but just got tired and didn’t track…and it went downhill from there. 
  3. I will drink at least 32 ounces of pure water a day.  Also a no.  With a cough coming on I drank lots of tea, but not sure I got all my water in.
  4. I will enjoy the holidays, but not forget my new ending in life includes making the best choice for ME — whether that’s having something in moderation or saying no.   YES!!  We went to a Brazilian steak house for my husband’s birthday on the 8th and I ate lighter during the day knowing I’d be eating heavier foods that evening and then I didn’t overdo it.  I ate what I wanted, ate til satisfied and I enjoyed myself immensely — both because I celebrated and because I did not stuff myself.  It was a great time! 
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My 30 Seconds on Politics

Note:  Today I posted this on FaceBook and felt it appropriate to share here as well. 


I’m sure you all know how I voted and I will tell you it was a vote against her, not for him. This election was crazy and I’m sorry it’s the one my oldest children had to face as their first opportunity to vote in a presidential election.
I do not feel extreme joy or extreme angst, because when all is said and done, my trust is not in my government but in He who created the heavens and the earth. I do not hide in my faith in Jesus, but I stand firm knowing that I will continue to do what I feel is my calling in life and trust God has allowed these things to happen for a reason.
Our nation has strayed from it’s roots, and I have personally been affected in a negative way by some of the change that happened under our current president (military cutbacks, in case you wonder), but I will not allow that to ruin my life or my day.
I will not hate those who do not agree with my way of thinking, but neither will I bow to their views if they contradict the morals and values I embrace. Being allowed to publicly voice our different opinions is one of the greatest blessings our country has to offer.
And finally, I will continue to pray for our leaders and our country.
God Bless the United States of America — still the greatest nation on earth.
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Healthy Holidays Challenge – Week #6

The first holiday of our Healthy Holidays Challenge is over and…. I indulged in too much candy.  Maybe if some trick-or-treaters would’ve actually showed up (as I was told they would by my apartment manager) I wouldn’t have felt the need to eat any, but I doubt it. 
Overeating on some Reece PB Cups is why I thought I had an upset stomach on Wednesday.  Unfortunately, the upset stomach hasn’t really ended, so I think I caught a bug of some sort.  Geez.  Thankfully, it’s just enough to be uncomfortable and irritating, so I can get the basics done daily.  It’s so annoying though.  Boo on sicknesses.  😦
On to my challenge results for this week… This is the week wherein I am not a failure, but I’ve had a few failures: 
  1. I will exercise for a minimum of 30 minutes, 4-5 days a week.  Only 3 days done this week in part to not feeling well.  Yesterday and today I made it for very slow 30-minute walks and I’m proud I made the effort, but during my walks I wondered a little why I was even doing it.  I’m calling them place saver workouts — they held the place of exercise in my daily routine.    
  2. I will track my food at least 6 days a week.  Nope.  Once I started not feeling well I didn’t track anything.  I have started up tracking again, but I think I’ve skipped about 3 days this week.   
  3. I will drink at least 32 ounces of pure water a day.  Also a no.  I’ve had lots of Diet 7Up and some mint tea, but I haven’t felt like chugging water.  I did buy some Lime La Croix to replace the soda when it runs out.  
  4. I will enjoy the holidays, but not forget my new ending in life includes making the best choice for ME — whether that’s having something in moderation or saying no.  One last no.  I did not handle Halloween candy like I had hoped.  Part of me didn’t mind that I indulged on Monday, since it was “weigh-in” day and all that.  But when I kept dipping into it on Tuesday and had desserts at a Harvest Dinner Tuesday night knowing I needed to be careful because I’d already eaten some candy…well, that was not the best choice for me.  So, those choices are giving me something to think about how I can handle Thanksgiving;  at the same time I haven’t had any chocolate since I haven’t been feeling so hot, so that’s a good thing.  
Thanks for checking in.  Our weekly blog reading challenger has started an Instagram account and now checks in with the other 16 challengers over there.

The ladies are all doing great and I’m inspired by their updates every week.  I’m giving myself a pass for this week on success.  Rather than be upset, it’s like I told them earlier today… this journey is not about consistent wins, it’s about averages and one bad week won’t ruin everything. 

I’m off to make some tea and rest before my son’s football game tonight.  Moroccan Mint Tea by Stash…it’s very comforting.  
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Healthy Holidays Challenge – Week #5

Well, hello!  What a busy, but fruitful week I’ve had.  
The busy-ness continues, so I’ll make this quick.. 
  1. I will exercise for a minimum of 30 minutes, 4-5 days a week.  Done.  
  2. I will track my food at least 6 days a week.  Done.  I am pleased to announce I did not eat all of my weekly points by Wednesday.  🙂  
  3. I will drink at least 32 ounces of pure water a day.  Well…this didn’t go as good as I hoped.  I didn’t get 32 oz in every day, but I got more than that a couple.  So.. maybe it evens out.  lol
  4. I will enjoy the holidays, but not forget my new ending in life includes making the best choice for ME — whether that’s having something in moderation or saying no.  Done.  On Wednesday I ate more small [almost homemade] flour tortillas than I really needed, but I had the room in my weekly points.  Next time I probably will try and be satisfied with two, but … this time instead of choosing to beat myself up because I over did it, I chose to track it, be responsible for it and move on.  They were delicious and I enjoyed them.  Yes, I’m entering the weekend with a few less points than I like, but a week ago right now I was entering the weekend in the negative.  So, that’s a win in my book.
I hope you have all had good weeks.  I’m off to pick up my son from school.  Tonight is the high school rivalry football game and I’m just thrilled we are the home team, because home team has bleachers with backs on them.  

Yeah…now I feel old.  ROFL 😀 

Thanks for checking in!
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