Sep 30, 2010

I came, I saw, I thrifted...

Wednesday happens to be "half off" day at our local thrift store. I found myself "in the neighborhood" with two hours that wasn't spoken for, and the rest is history! I almost never shop for thrifted clothing, reason being I'm very hard to "fit" and I usually have the grandkids with me, so it's too much trouble to try things on. But yesterday I was by myself, and I took notice of the large dressing rooms with mirrors. I decided to make a stab at it. I made a mental note not to spend more than $10. Did I?

First I'll show you the incidentals that I couldn't pass up...

*The tin candle scounce goes with several other pieces I already have. Can you believe, 25 cents?

*The small display hanger was 15 cents. I have black iron accents in my kitchen, so I'm sure I can find something to hang on it.

*The larger hanger I'm thinking is supposed to be for a bunch of bananas. For 99 cents, I picked this up to give to my mom, who also has black accents in her newly remodeled kitchen.

*The candle holder in the middle of the photo is dark blue speckled tin. It's a cup with a handle attached to a bowl. I thought it was well worth the 75 cents I paid for it, even though I changed out the decorative ring and added my own candle.

I'm totally in love with this soft leather purse, which measures about 8" x 6". It is in perfect condition with a nice silky lining and a working zipper. My cost? 50 cents!

Now for the clothing...
This will be my first attempt at wearing a vest. I liked the color, and it fit well even when it was zipped up. I have a cream colored, collarless, long sleeved T-shirt that I think will look nice with it, either with jeans or black slacks. The vest is a combination of cable knit and suede and the color is something in between rust and burgandy. For $2.00, I thought it was worth the chance.

I was really happy to find this green sweater with the black trim, especially for $1.50. It is in beautiful condition and I wear black dress slacks a lot. I just read yesterday that the "in" color this season is black, paired with darker shades of greens, blues, reds, etc. instead of the bright "neon" colors that have been popular the past couple of years.

This is a more casual shirt, but the fabric is heavier than a T-shirt, so I think I can wear it either with jeans or slacks and it would look nice either by itself or with a casual vest or jacket. It's by Sonama, and well worth the $1.50 I paid.

This blouse was my real gamble. It doesn't quite fit me well enough to wear it yet, but I really love it. I'm pretty sure I tried on something like this at Coldwater Creek a couple years ago and it didn't fit at if I recall it was something like $50...which was totally out of the question. But I loved the style and the feel of the fabric. When I tried this on yesterday, I made a pact with myself that if it still didn't fit a year from now, I will donate it, but I think if I can lose one size it will work. I bet $2. on it. Have you ever done anything like this--bought something you really liked but couldn't wear? How did it turn out for you?

All of these items together came in under my $10 limit. But one more item called my name! I debated with myself, but finally caved in.

This is a faux suede lightweight jacket from Briggs, that is machine washable & dryable. It fits well even when zipped, with the exception of the sleeves, which I can easily hem up. I know I will get a lot of use out of this basic jacket, especially as much as I'm in and out of the car, where I hate to wear heavy coats. So the $4 put me over my self-imposed budget, but I'm not feeling too guilty.

Grand total, including tax: $13.64

Sep 28, 2010

A Nine Day Adventure...Part Four: a relaxing day for just the two of us.

Andy and Ellie and the boys left the Love Shack on Tuesday morning after helping to tidy things up. We stayed a little longer to wash and dry the sheets and towels we had used. We had no idea how to thank our benefactors for allowing us the use of their home for three days, so I wrote them a thank you note and left it on the kitchen counter with a bottle of Rodeo Red, our favorite Ohio wine.

So, we said "good-bye" to the Love Shack, but before we drove the two hours to Andy's and Ellie's home in Rock Hill, SC, we spent some time at the home of Carl Sandburg in Flat Rock, NC near Hendersonville, which is a National Historic Site. Among other things Sandburg is known for, he was a Pulitzer prize winning biographer of Abraham Lincoln.

This photo was taken from quite a distance away, as the home is located on 30 acres and while only 1/3 mile up the road, has an elevation of 110 feet. And we walked it. Here are some of the views along the way:

We signed up for a tour, and while we waited we planned to walk around the grounds. That's when I saw THIS sign:

Thankfully, we didn't see any black bears, but we were surprised to see these:

We learned that Mrs. Sandburg, whose name was Lillian, raised champion dairy goats. Descendants of her prized herds live on the farm today. I really never knew there were so many breeds of goats! Some more of my favorite shots are these:

By the time we finished visiting the goats, we were ready for the house tour. I'm not sure what we were expecting, but we were pretty amazed at what we saw! Not only was every room in the house filled with hundreds of books, old typewriters, and magazines, things were on display pretty much as they were when the Sandburg's lived there, and everything was quite unpretentious...

The kitchen actually reminded us of our own childhoods!

The Sandburg's lived in this home from 1945 until 1967 when he died...and he wrote about a third of his works while living here. It was interesting.

After stopping in the gift shop, where I bought (what else?) a couple books, we left the Sandburg home and stopped to eat a late lunch, then headed to our real destination of this whole trip! Andy and Ellie would be leaving that night, and we would be on our own with the two boys for the next four days!

Next ~~ A very special time with two very special grandchildren!

(Note: Five Aspects of Woman Series in progress at my other blog, Scroll back to Aug. 29 and read forward)

Sep 26, 2010

A Nine Day Adventure...Part Three: All play on Labor Day...

The main reason for this particular trip south was so that we could lend childcare for Deacon (4 1/2) and Owen (2 1/2) while our son and daughter-in-law went for a 4 day pastoral assessment in Greenville, NC, two hours from their home. On Monday, Andy really needed some time alone to do some preparations for it as they would be there from Wednesday through Saturday. So he took off for a local coffee shop, and Ellie and the rest of us went apple picking! Ellie knew of a place closeby called Skytop Orchard, which is literally at the top of a mountain!

Here are some of my favorite photos from that day:

I kid you not...this is the view we could see as we looked out across the apple orchard!

Granpda pulling the kids in the wagon as we head for the trees...

There were plenty apples within easy reach for the kids...this is Deacon...

I think Owen must have eaten three or four of them...

Deacon has no idea I caught him doing THIS!

Deacon snapped this picture of me!

It's so cute the way they were holding onto our loot while being pulled on the bumpy path...

I later turned some of these apples into a delicious pie!

The apple orchard also had a small barnyard for the kids to enjoy...

We caught up with Andy for a late lunch at this cute little place called Hubba Hubba in Flat Rock, NC, and had barbeque outside on a picnic table before returning to the Love Shack to do some relaxing.

In the evening, we all took a 1/2 mile walk around this pretty lake that is on the Bonclarken Conference Center grounds.

Next ~~ We take some time for ourselves before the 24/7 child care begins, and enjoy a visit to Carl Sandburg's home.

(Note: Five Aspects of Woman Series in progress at my other blog,www.mistressofmydomain.blogspot.comScroll back to Aug. 29 and read forward)

Sep 22, 2010

Diet update...

I just happened to notice that it has been a month since I posted about my eating plan and the first 10 pounds of weight loss. That was then, this is now.

I'm learning some things, and I'm not giving up. But I am a bit frustrated.

A couple of weeks ago I went out and bought a new bathroom scale and even though it read about a pound higher than the scale at my doctor's office, it was consistent and had nice large, bright red numbers. I'd never had one of these digital LED scales before, and I found it a little too fun to use.

That's right. I became addicted to weighing myself. I was waking up several times during the night and went straight to the bathroom scale. It was ridiculous but I couldn't help myself.

Then suddenly, after one week, my new scale died. I tried a new battery. I did everything the instruction sheet told me to do. I went to the manufacturer's website and followed even more directions. Things went from bad to worse. Finally they told me I could mail the scale back and they would replace it. I hope to do that this week. I have no idea how much I weigh!

And that is probably a good thing...for now. I doubt that I have lost any more weight, by the feel of my clothes. I'm hoping I have "maintained". I think I need to eat more.

More?? Yes. Ever since I lost the first 10 pounds and my appetite got more under control, I haven't been eating like I did the first month. I've often been skipping breakfast and sometimes just munching on celery sticks and peanut butter during the day. Then I am really hungry by suppertime and tend to overeat at that meal. This is not a good thing. I do fear that I have plateaued with the weight loss. I've heard about the "starvation" effect that can happen when dieting, where the metabolism slows down and I'm wondering if my body is refusing to let go of my extra fat because I'm not feeding it as regularly? And if I start eating regularly again, will I gain back even more fat, a la the famed "yo-yo" diet thing?

So, starting TODAY, I am going to do the same thing I did the first month when I was losing consistently. Slowly, but consistently. I will go back to regularly eating breakfast and lunch minus carbs. Then I will eat a normal supper but with smaller portions. I will also not indulge in a dessert every night, and will replace that sweet thing with fresh fruit more often than not.

I'm still drinking my water and moving around more and easier than before I started this, but not as much as I did the first month. So I need to return to concentrating on that as well.

How am I doing psychologically and spiritually regarding all of this? I'm a bit fearful. I'm fearing failure because I expected the second month to be as easy as the first month. I'm annoyed with myself that I became so obsessed with weighing myself. I'm scared that as fall is here and winter will follow, that I will not be outside moving around as much and will have a set-back because of it.

I really don't have the time or money to join Curves or a community fitness center. So I need to find something physical to do that I will enjoy until I can be outside more next spring. I definitely cannot afford to go six months of the year without exercise.

I will miss these days, but I am determined to find something else to do until they return.

I also am going to return to keeping a diary of what I am eating/doing and tracking what works and what doesn't work. This will require some discipline.

When I get my scale replaced, I will weigh myself once each morning and take an average of my weight for the week to use as my measure of how much I weigh.

Here are some of the Scripture verses that I will be concentrating on:

"I can do all things through Christ who strengthens me." Philipians 4:13

"No discipline seems pleasant at the time, but painful. Later on, however, it produces a harvest of righteousness and peace for those who have been trained by it." Hebrews 12:11

"The fruit of the Spirit is love, joy, peace, patience, kindness, goodness, faithfulness, gentleness, and SELF-CONTROL." Galatians 5:22-23

"Commit everything you do to the LORD. Trust him, and he will help you." Psalm 37:5

Sep 21, 2010

Woman: from the man and for the man? Are you kidding?

FIVE ASPECTS OF WOMAN series in progress at my other blog. Please start with the August 29, 2010 post and read forward. And be blessed...

Sep 20, 2010

A Nine day adventure... part two: Sunday

Here we are having our
breakfast in the beautiful
conference center's dining room. It was great not to have to wander around looking for a place to eat.

Our son suggested a nearby church we would enjoy visiting where his friend is the pastor. It was only a few miles away so we did just that...

We love beautiful, old downtown church buildings...

And especially when they house a thriving congregation...

We were delighted to find it was a communion Sunday, and since we arrived early, I took a picture of this beautiful scene. God's people are where you find them, and we sat next to a friendly woman whose name, appropriately, was "Dixie"!

After church, we stopped at a local grocery and bought enough food to last a couple of days. Andy's family would arrive in the mid afternoon, and I made us a simple spaghetti supper. It had been two months since we saw each other, so we just flopped out for a while at the Love Shack...

and then found our way to the North Carolina Apple Festival, which is held every Labor Day weekend in Hendersonville...

It was a beautiful day with mild temperatures in the '70's and a hint of fall in the air, which the locals were delighting in after a summer of unrelenting heat. We sampled yummy apples, apple slushes, fried apple pies, and visted all kinds of vendor booths. The festival sprawled up and down Main Street, and was a bunch of good, down-home fun!

Next ~~ all play on Labor Day!

(Note: Five Aspects of Woman Series in progress at my other blog, Scroll back to Aug. 29 and read forward)