Sunday, July 31, 2011

End of The 21 Day Kickstart Plan

Well, lets get right to my totals. :0) When I started the few days test run I weighed in at 306. As of my last day of the plan I now weigh 284.6. I lost 21.4 pounds. I have a long way to go but now I feel prepared to get there. We have company coming this week. They will be staying with us and Lee said what are we going to do to stay on track! I feel like I'm falling in love all over again. hehe We sat and talked and made a plan for what we will be eating while they are here. We are doing our menu for the upcoming week later this morning. We will be using almost all the recipes again this week. Pictured above is a couple of our favorites.

The Rustic Tomato Soup is out of this world, the picture is of it cooking. I wish my picture of it finished with the rice and beans it hadn't been so fuzzy. It really looked pretty in the dish. So colorful. We both loved, loved, loved the Red Beans and Rice with Collard Greens(pictured). Collard Greens is one of our new favorites! I woke up yesterday and wanted it for breakfast! It is oh so good. The last picture is of the Insalata d'Arance(Salad of Orange and Fennel). I was so excited to try this because fennel is one of my favorites. Lee and I love it when I have roasted it with potatoes. This salad is off the charts juicy, crispy, crunchy FRESH!!! I thought it would be an odd tasting dish but it was wonderful. We decided on the second time we had it to add the olives(as shown in picture). Lee and I both did not like it with the olives. Don't get us wrong Lee and I both love olives, but it didn't work for us.

As an over all review Lee and I like pretty much all of the dishes on the menu. Lee didn't like any of the curry dishes(he loathes curry). I do not like sprouts on the wraps(I did eat them though) and I did not like the Bananas in Berries Artesia. It is a thickened sauce made with strawberries, blackberries and raspberries. I loath the taste of raspberries. It was Lee's 3rd favorite dish. He asked if I could make the sauce to put over his pancakes. So now for our 3 favorite dishes. And believe me this is really hard because so many of them are so awesome! But here goes for the 6 recipes we will be using over and over. I am not including the red beans and rice with collard greens in our favorites since we both loved them it goes without saying it will be made many times to come around here.

Lee's top 3 favorites:

1. Blue Corn Chip Salad
2. Perfect Portabello Burger(this was in my top 5)
3. Bananas in Berries Artesia

My top 3 favorites:

1. French Onion Sourdough Soup
2. Balsamic Zucchini Sandwich
3. Jamaican Stir-Fry

I still have a way to go but eating right is giving me a calm to help me move forward to make real changes and bring a better balance in my life. I'm so thankful for Dr. Pam Popper of the Wellness Forum of Worthington, Ohio for encouraging all it's members to go and see Dr. Barnard when he was in Columbus. I want to thank Dr. Neal Barnard for taking the time to spend a extra minute with me and encourage me to follow the plan. (he wrote such a nice message in my book). I want to thank all of my friends who helped me stay on track, posted comments and were there for me when I needed a listening ear. But most of all I want to thank my husband, Lee. He ate everything I made and never complained! I love him for doing the plan with me but more importantly wanting to make it a permanent change in our eating habits. It's so much easier with him on board. :0)

Take care my dear friends and I wish you happy and healthy day!

Till my next post...

(by the way did you like the pictures of the kitties getting weighed at the Vet's office?)

Sunday, July 24, 2011

Quick Update

I am so behind it scares me! HA! I have so much to do and just let myself get behind. I need to find real balance in my life. As soon as I started this 21 Day Kickstart Program, I sort of let everything fall by the wayside.

So let me apologize for not posting as I had wanted to do. I haven't taken the time to take many photo's of the food. But I will be back on track hopefully by Wednesday.

Now for my weigh in this morning. After two weeks my weight is 287.4! I lost another 3.8 pounds this past week. It's hard to believe but since I started the test run and into the plan I have lost a total of 18.6 pounds! In less than 3 weeks!!! AND NO EXERCISE! Now to just get my big jiggly butt in gear...think of the weight I could lose! hehhe :0)

I can't really tell that I've lost the weight when I look at myself, since I am so obese. It's hard to think that I am more than 150 pounds over weight. I realize now how I got here. I know now how to fix this and stay healthy the rest of my life.

I may not post till Wednesday but remember I am sticking to the plan and will be back to share pictures and reviews of the dishes we have been having.

Take care all. Thank you for all your wonderful comments and most of all have a happy and healthy day!

Till my next post...

Wednesday, July 20, 2011

Day 11

Well, Day 10 really put me to the test. My husband, Lee, had to have some yearly exams at the VA Clinic in Columbus, Ohio. Usually, everything has run so smoothly on his appointments. Never too much waiting. But yesterday was really an off day for them. After he had a 5 minute bone density test. The nurse asked him to wait while she checked to see if it had gone through. Little did I know till my husband came out that the nurse that was in the waiting room where I was, was the nurse talking to all the other nurses about the door that was finally fixed for 30 minutes! Lee finally rolled out after waiting 45 minutes and asked if his test went through. She didn't even apologize for forgetting about him. She just said deadpan "your fine, you can go now." Then to finish we had to leave Lee's living will with a social worker. Well, first they sent us to one dept to another then to Mental Health dept. Finally, I said I thought I saw the offices on the 3rd floor by your doctor's office one time we were here. So we went up there and explained to the nurse at the desk. She said "let me buzz you back and I'll take you to your social worker." We followed her down the hall. She said she would find out which waiting room to wait at(there are 2 rooms close to each other) So as I walk over to one room and Lee stays put. I stand right next to her as she leans in the room and tells him we are here to just drop off a living will for Lee's files. She looked at me and said You can wait right here and he'll be right out. SO I thought he must be with someone else since I didn't look into the room. 40 minutes later Lee started to fume. He rolled around and knocked on his door which was open and he said...this is the truth..."Oh, are you waiting for me?" It was like that in every dept!!! What should have only taken us about 2 hours ended up being almost 5 hours!

Now, you may wonder why I would tell you about this. Normally I would be ready for a coke and a bag of chips after this! I hate to feel angry and it's always been easier to eat than explode! :0) Well, I know now I am better than that. I went prepared. Lee said we will only be gone about 3 hours but something told me to take water and some veggie snacks and some nuts. So when we left and got to the van we had a minute to let it go. I just hope this VA Clinic doesn't turn out to be like the Cleveland VA Hospital. We use to go up there for his yearly exams. So even though we waited longer than we should have we still didn't have to drive 3 hours both ways! :0) I really think the change in my diet has helped me feel calmer and feel better able to handle some extra stress. So as Lee said "it's all good".

So by the time we got home and ate we crashed for the night. I got back up (since we have kittens we are bottle feeding). So my sleep schedule is so thrown off. I have so much left to do around the house today. I'm down to the last of the re-organizing EVERYTHING in my house! When I am done with this last room I plan on keeping everything in it's appointed place. It is a nice feeling to simplify.

I will be back with some food pictures tomorrow. For today, I hope you will enjoy some pictures of our kittens. The black and white one is a male. We found him in our wood pile so my hubby named him Wood-E-Pile, Woody for short. The tiger cat is a girl and he named her Karma. But I just call her Miss Kitty. And that's our dog Jasper cleaning them. He is so protective of them. He really helps keep them calm. Who knew a dog would do that? :0)

As always, I wish you a happy and healthy day!

Till my next post...

Monday, July 18, 2011

Day 9 Lunch

I know this lunch looks kind of small but the mug the soup is in is huge! The sandwich had so much flavor and great meaty texture from the zucchini. Finished off with a nice sliced ripe banana. Very filling meal.

I just had to take a picture of my onions as they browned. I thought they looked so beautiful and the smell. This is the second time we have had both items on today's lunch menu. The soup actually calls for 2 whole wheat bread slices in it. They dissolve and thicken the soup. Lee didn't like the bread in it all so I left it out this time. I like it either way but after Lee forcing the lentil soup down yesterday, I figured I'd give him a break. I hate to tell him tomorrow for dinner is a red curry chickpea and sweet potato soup.

Well, I have so much to do around here so I will not be posting again till tomorrow. It's funny how when I am concentrating on one thing or area in my life other things just slip by! I will eventually find the balance I am looking for. I know that if I take care of my body it will help me have the energy to care for all the other area's in my life.

I forgot to mention when I began that the book has an additional feature, not just a menu plan and recipes. Each day it gives you 3 things. They are; A Word of Inspiration, A Doctor's Prescription and Quick Kitchen Tips. Today's quick tip was about letting stress go. To take a relaxed approach to the kitchen , maybe turn on some music, let the stress go and have fun! And that is just what I did today. Like Dr. Barnard said in the beginning of the book, put on some music and serenade yourself while cooking. You deserve it! :0) It made the time fly, especially since I have to wash dishes by hand. haha

Well, as always I wish you a happy and healthy day.

Till my next post...

Sunday, July 17, 2011

Dinner Day 8

What a dinner. Can you believe Lee and I shared one serving of the Mali Chips(raw zucchini). One serving was 1 whole zucchini! It was suppose to be made with red, yellow and green zucchini but I could only find green. It was served with the basic salsa recipe. I added the optional black beans and a chipolte pepper in adobo sauce. The bread is whole grain bread slice from Ezekiel. The soup made 3 servings. I still have one big serving left in the fridge. It was a kind of Ethiopian dish. Lee did not like it all. He loathes curry. But, I give him kudos for eating it anyway. He is a shinning example to me. I figure if he is eating things he doesn't like but willing to try then so can I! The steamed veggies were so fresh. We got the broccoli and the cauliflower from the farmers market in town. I can't believe how much it says is one serving. Lee and I are just not getting it all eaten. :0( I need to see if I can freeze some of this. I would hate for it all to go to waste.

Have a wonderful evening, sleep well and wake up to a great breakfast! :0)

Till my next post...

Begining Day 8 & Thoughts About First Week

First , let me thank you all for your kind comments and ideas! It means so much to me. Having support is such and added bonus. :0) My cup runneth over!

Now down to the nitty gritty! Around here when I get up, I hit the floor running. I have LOTS to do! So this morning I forgot to weigh myself till after breakfast. OOPS! My weight after 7 days is 291.2 (down .4 in 2 days) so I lost a total of 3.2 pounds this week. YEAH!!! That's with no exercise at all. This week I intend to add a bit of exercise and drink more water.

Let me tell you the 3 big things I have noticed after just one week.

1. My life right now is a bit of a mess. (that includes my home...I am moving around rooms and setting up a crafting studio) I have been feeling stressed everyday. I worry about every little thing! But after one week, not so much. :0) I feel 10 times calmer and I am internally compartmentalizing each chore and worry. That way it doesn't all seem like one ball of crap I have to deal with.

2. I will try to put this a delicately as possible. All I can say is this has been a "MOVING EXPERIENCE"!!! Lee and I both feel things are moving quite regular. hehe I also had my first hemorrhoid last year. Well, it's never gone away. I have been suffering with it for at least 8 months. In 4 days all symptoms are GONE!!! Sorry, if it seems a bit to much information but the fact is I just wanted to say I am already seeing results.

3. I saved the best for last. I"M NOT HUNGRY ALL THE TIME! Before I started this meal plan I was hungry ALL the time. If anything I feel like I"m eating too much. Dr. Barnard is so right when he states in his book "Certain foods trigger the appetite centers, causing you to over eat. Others trigger the satiety centers-the part of your brain that tell you to stop eating-so you eat less. What this means is that if you've felt like your appetite is stronger than it should be, this likely has a simple nutritional cause. By choosing the right foods-which you'll learn how to do-you can easily correct the issue." And how right he is! Even seeing the foods and smelling the aromas have become such a pleasure. I still feel a bit overwhelmed in the kitchen as far as doing dishes but it will get easier the more I do it. Let's face it, doing dishes has always been my least favorite chore. :0)

This mornings breakfast was so easy. A Ginger Banana Breakfast Smoothie and toast with jam. Lunch is a pita pizza with a mixed greens with roasted red pepper vinaigrette. Dinner tonight will be:

Curried Tomato Lentil soup
Steamed asparagus, broccoli and cauliflower
Crusty whole-grain bread
Mali Chips
Fresh strawberries

Tell me that doesn't sound delicious and tons of food! I will post pictures tonight of dinner. I can't wait to see how it turns out.

As always my friends, I wish you a happy and healthy day!

Saturday, July 16, 2011

End of Day 6 and Begining Day 7

Yesterday, Lee and I went to Ikea in West Chester, Ohio. Yes, I have the best husband in the world. It is 2 hours away and all I needed was 3 cd/dvd shelves. I needed them for my craft space. They were EXACTLY what I needed and they didn't ship. I tried to find any company that had them to ship but no luck. SO our road trip was on. We used almost a tank of gas($37). My shelves were only $5.99 each. Yep we spent $37 dollars and 4 hours on the road for $19 in shelves! LOL I guess the real point I want to make here is I went prepared. Thanks to my sister Mary who is always getting prizes at her work(UPS). She gave me a really nice UPS insulated lunch bag. It fits 2 little freezer blocks along with two waters and a small veggie snack. I admit I was pretty hungry when we got home but I was prepared to make lunch as soon as I walked in the door.

I did it! We didn't stop for drinks or a quick meal. I realize with a good breakfast under my belt and a healthy snack(and of course drinking water) really did keep my hunger in check.

I felt rewarded when I took the first bite of my "Best Portabello Burger"! I have never cooked a mushroom in water like that but I have to tell you it was out of this world.

OK, Now for my big confession of the day. My husband was feeling exhausted. (He is after all a quadriplegic and doesn't always have the energy to keep going) He decided about 5pm to lay down. When I went in around 7 to get him up for dinner. He he didn't feel like it just yet and asked to wait an hour. Well, I had just got done talking to my sister and thought I'll just lay down with him too. I mean just a nap for an hour. Well, I bet you know what I'm going to tell you. We slept through dinner. Not good. I woke up around 11pm to our two little kittens cries for milk. I fed them. Lee just wanted to sleep and to tell the truth so did I. So, we didn't have dinner but I feel much better this morning than I have in a while. I thought I would wake up starving but not the case. Maybe, our bodies were telling us they needed more rest than food? I just know I don't want to miss anymore meals. I have such a fear of failure if I don't follow the plan to a tee. I feel like I'm always trying to learn to go with the flow more...someday soon hopefully!

We will be grocery shopping today again for the next few days. Whole Foods is crazy on the weekends! Got my new camera card so I will get in gear and start taking pictures again! Not much of a blog without the pictures. LOL :0)

As always, I wish you a happy and healthy day!

Friday, July 15, 2011

Day 6

Ok, I told myself just weigh in once a week. Could I wait two more days? Of Course not! :0) I weighed 291.6 today!!! I've lost another 2.8 pounds. I was so happy about it and then that little voice in my head said "This is too easy. Your doing something wrong. Are you really suppose to eat this much food?"

I realize I am following a food plan to the letter. It's telling me what to eat, basically what to do for 21 days. I don't have to make any decisions, just follow. "Lightbulb Moment" I think this is why none of the other "diets" ever worked for me. You follow them and when your done your on your own. I'm a great follower not such a great decision maker. :0) It was so easy to buy prepackaged meals and snacks. I never had to "think" about what I put in my mouth.

But this is all so different. I like what I am eating. I'm finding it easier each day to be in the kitchen cooking. Seeing all the lovely veggies and fruit in the fridge actually makes me feel calm. It is cathartic to cut up the food and smell all the wonderful aromas. So, this time, my life, my thoughts and my heart are changing. I'm feeling calmer and "feeling" for the first time. I also feel full! I realize I can eat so much and feel content because I am actually feeding my body what it needs and it is telling me "well done"! At this moment I know in my mind that I have such a long way to go but I now know I am going to get there.

We are having portabella mushroom burgers for lunch. I'll be back later tonight to fill you in on my meal reviews for the day. Hopefully with some pictures.

As always, I wish you a happy and healthy day!

Thursday, July 14, 2011

Day 5 Begins

As I type this I'm finishing my morning shake (Dr. Popper's recipe from the Wellness Forum in Worthington, Ohio). I have already taken out the trash and weeded my front flowerbeds. Not bad huh?! :0)

Now I just need to make breakfast and off to do some errands. This may sound weird but I feel nervous going out. I worry that I will not make a good choice. I mean I hear this inner monologue while I'm driving. "What would one small coke hurt?" "You can make that up by walking on the treadmill(which of course I never would do)" "I just can't make it home, I need to stop if just for a drink(and of course I feel bad just ordering a coke thru a drive thru so why not add 2 apple pies...I know Lee would eat one when I bring it home. And you know it doesn't make it home!) Well, It has to STOP! I can't believe I can't be an adult and wait 15 more minutes to get home to drink some water or eat!!!

I have a working brain, most of the time anyway. hehe I have a small insulated bag and freezer packs. I WILL take water with me. I WILL take a healthy snack! I CAN DO THIS!

I am beginning to realize I make bad choices because:
1. I am lazy and want instant gratification
2. I am not prepared
3. I don't take any time for me
4. I don't believe in myself

Of course these a just a few of the reasons. Sometimes I sit and think how can you do so well at so many things but not taking care of myself? Then BAM it hits me. Sometimes it feels easier to wear myself ragged taking care of everything else. And really everything else isn't what really matters. Especially if I'm not hear to enjoy any of it!

I'm not sure if you have ever read this but it's a good reminder to myself. I think I will hang it on my fridge as a reminder. I hope you will enjoy it too :0)

Take care and have a happy and healthy day!

The Mayonnaise Jar and 2 Beers

When things in your life seem too much to handle, when 24 hours in a day are not enough, remember the mayonnaise jar and 2 beers.

A professor stood before his philosophy class and had some items in front of him. When the class began, he wordlessly picked up a very large and empty mayonnaise jar and proceeded to fill it with golf balls, He than asked the students if the jar was full. They agreed that it was.

The professor then picked up a box of pebbles and pored them into the jar lightly. The pebbles rolled into the open areas between the golf balls. He then asked his students if the jar was full. The students agreed it was.

The professor next picked up a box of sand and poured it into the jar. Of course, the sand filled up everything else. He asked once more if the jar was full. The students responded with a unanimous "yes".

The professor than produced 2 beers from under the table and poured the entire contents into the jar effectively filling the empty space between the sand. The students laughed.

"Now" said the professor as the laughter subsided, "I wanted you to recognize that this jar represents your life. The golf balls are the important things...your family, your children, your health, your friends and your favorite passions. The same goes for life. If you spend all your time and energy on the small stuff you will never have room for the things that are important to you.

Pay attention to the things that are critical to your happiness. Spend time with your children. Spend time with your parents. Visit your grandparents. Take time to get medical check ups. Take your spouse out to dinner. Play another 18. There will always be time to clean the house and fix the disposal. Take care of the golf balls first...the things that really matter. Set your priorities. The rest is sand.

One student raised her hand and inquired what the beer represented. The professor smiled and said, "I'm glad you asked." The beer just shows you that no matter how full your life may seem, there's always room for a couple of beers with a friend."

Wednesday, July 13, 2011

Day 4

It's 11:38pm as I begin this post. It has been a long but good day. I wasn't able to take any photos of my delicious food today. My "card" is full. I will go tomorrow and get a card that not only holds more photos but will be looking for a video camera. I think it would be neat to show not only my crafting demos(that's my other blog) but show off some of my cooking skills. LOL It should be at least good for a laugh. :0)

I always thought I cooked a lot. I made most of our meals each day. How wrong I really was! I guess I never realized how easy it was to skip breakfast since Lee never wanted to eat it. I never realized how many times we ate out, take out, drive thru, ordered out and just sat around and ate junk food out of bags (my favorite meal could be said to be cookies, chips and Dr. Pepper. EGADS! What have I been doing?) Reality has really hit me in the face this week at how LAZY I have been when it comes to really making meals. How was I able to rationalize my cooking? Or lack of? I have to say that I still have a sink full of dishes. That's right I don't have a dishwasher or garbage disposal. I live in a rural area and when we built our home we were told it was not good to have on a septic and well system. SO I feel a bit chained to my kitchen sink and stove! I know I will get into gear and figure a better way to do all this but It's funny how what we do and what we think we have been doing are so COMPLETELY DIFFERENT!

Today we had oatmeal with blueberries for breakfast. Lee said he will be glad to have the breakfast burrito with potatoes and spinach for breakfast tomorrow. I guess oatmeal more than once a week is enough for him. :0)

Our lunch was a simple wrap, low-fat baked tortilla chips and a fresh apple. But dinner...oh yeah! We had Quick black bean chili with rice topped with tomatillo sauce and warmed tortillas. The chili was so yummy. It gave an option for serving adding fresh cilantro and a squeeze of lime. It MADE the dish! Let me say first I have never tasted tomatilla sauce(salsa verde) so I wasn't sure what it was suppose to taste like. The recipe called for 3 tablespoons of fresh cilantro but we doubled it. It's our favorite part of the meal and it really was good over rice. Lee gives this meal a 4.8 out of 5. And I whole heartily concur.

Hopefully I'll be back to getting some pictures by tomorrow evening. :0)

Take care and have a happy and healthy day!

Tuesday, July 12, 2011

End of Day 1, Day 2 & The Start Of Day 3

So sorry I wasn't able to post yesterday. Yesterday we had one heck of a storm. It took out our phone and internet. I guess that's what happen when you live in a rural area. I took a few pictures just as the storm was coming.

The meal pictured was Dinner from day one. My brother and niece, Natalie came over and had lunch with us. I was so caught up plating the food and chatting with my little 2 year old niece, Natalie that I completely forgot to take a picture of lunch. Lunch was a Blue Corn Chip Salad and Sliced Watermelon drizzled with lime juice. The salad has been Lee's favorite dish so far. I love watermelon and though drizzling lime juice on it would ruin it. Oh, how I was wrong! It was awesome!!! It was the perfect end to the meal.

Now for the dinner I have picture here. I wish I could have gotten a better picture and I am sure blue plates don't do much for the look of the food. But the blue plates do match my kitchen. :0)

Dinner was the Fettuccine with grilled asparagus, peas and lemon; Caldo Verde and Pears in balsamic glaze. Let me first say, many of the foods I have never cooked with so if the fettuccine dish looks like the veggies burned your right. But it was still very good. The Caldo Verde in the bowl was like a potato kale soup. The pears in the glaze with arugula was so good just typing about it makes my mouth water! So far the Caldo Verde and the pear salad have been my favorite. These are going to be put to use in the future for sure.

Today we had citrus and sage oatmeal, mutigrain toast and orange slices for breakfast. The oatmeal was different. I liked it but the sage kind of threw me off. But I feel full and ready to start day 3.

I have lots of errands to run and a dog that has to be taken to the groomers. So I am prepping everything before I go so I will come back in between errands so as not to eat on the run. I'm still not sure if I should be snacking during the 21 days. I know in the book it lists snacks you can have but I think that is for after the 21 days. I need to read the book again. (you would think I could retain the information since I just read it 2 months ago. Hopefully this way of eating will help my brain function better too! LOL)

Take care and I wish you a happy and healthy day!

Sunday, July 10, 2011

Day 1

Ok, before I tell you my weight I would like to say that when we saw Dr. Barnard he said try a few meals for a week before your start date. That's just what we did. Lee and I have been trying a lot of vegan dishes for the last 2 weeks. I haven't watched portions or weighed myself. In the picture I am posting today was taken at my Mom's almost 3 weeks ago and I weighed 306!

Well, my weight today is 294.4!!! I am beyond words. It seems so strange to my psyche that eating so much food that I could still lose weight.

Our Breakfast on Day 1 was mango lime pancakes and strawberries. I still feel "scared" about the portions. I made it exactly as written in the recipe and measured out the 1/3 cup batter for each pancake. It made 4 pancakes(2 a serving) and this is a picture of my husbands plate. I used much less maple syrup. I cut up 6 strawberries for each of us. It was a wonderful breakfast. The mango and lime is an awesome combination. My husband really liked it. He has a hard time eating breakfast and kept saying this is so much food.

Well, my dishes are done. I have items sitting out ready for lunch. I'll keep you posted on how lunch and dinner go. My brother and niece are coming over at lunch time. I told him ahead of time what we would be having so if he wanted something else he would have to bring it. :0)

Wishing you a happy and healthy day!

Saturday, July 9, 2011

21-Day Weight Loss Kick Start

How time flies. Over my almost 53 years on this earth I've heard that statement at least one hundred times. Truer words have never been spoken. How sad the way I have squandered this precious gift of time. I have let almost 4 months pass by with out a post. Embarrassed of the same old "ME"! Still the same weight. Still not exercising. Still afraid to take the first step and really commit to a life style change in eating that will benefit not only myself but my husband.

Let's face it, I AM lazy! I have been looking for the easy way to lose weight and keep it off. I may be lazy but I'm not stupid! I KNOW the ONLY WAY to lose my weight and keep it off is not to diet but to make a healthy life style change. I "know" what I need to do. I need to eat right, exercise and take care of my body. I just haven't done it. I have become the master of excuses..."the house flooded and we have major damage to take care of, after I take care of my husband, dog, cats, house, meals, dishes, yard work, volunteering, family visits(at my house or traveling)", the list is endless and meaningless! They are just EXCUSES!!!! No one in my family will care if I eat vegan or anyway at all. None of my real friends will mind if I can't do things with them and need time to myself. My husband understands that he can be a lot of work from time to time(after all he is a quadriplegic and he helps as much as he can too). But most of all my husband loves me for me and will support my need to have time for me, time to exercise and will eat the way I will be eating. I was worried about him not wanting to eat "vegan" for 3 weeks but he said with a smile "What ever you make and put in front of me, I'll eat it."

We did our shopping together for food for the first 3 days. Since it is just the 2 of us it will work out better right now to shop every few days. We won't be eating out and as you can see by my chart I made we can look at each day and know just what we will be having. It has a nice large magnet across the back so I can hang it on the freezer door near my pantry. We have decided to keep the chart and meal plan from now on. I think I will be more successful with a bit more planing. I know I will struggle with the exercise part at first but Lee will be right with me. He will also go with me to walk the dog everyday so it will be nice to spend some time outdoors while Lee is able.

I will weigh myself in the morning and promise to post for the next 21 days. I will include pictures of some of the meals, reviews on the meals and updates on weight loss.

I want to succeed. I want to be the real me. I don't want to do anything that makes me feel less. I want to continue to work not only on my health, but my relationships with Lee, family and friends.

I want to enjoy a happy and healthy life. My life!