Shopping, Shopping, Shopping

I am updating my Costco shopping list with a few prices.  Today when I went shopping I took notes.  This list may be found in the sidebar menu of my blog under “Pages.”

I was disappointed to find that the Truvia is no longer a better buy at Sam’s Club.  The last time I bought a 400-count box for $10.97, I think.  Meanwhile Costco’s costs $14.97.  Today I discovered that Sam’s Club has raised their price and Truvia is now $15.48 now or something like that.  Next time I’m buying it at Costco.  I would have today, but I didn’t want to drive back to Costco for only fifty cents.

I bought some Honeyville organic peanut butter powder for eleven something.  Upon looking at the ingredients, I have discovered that it is most likely not on plan, since coconut sugar is listed in the ingredients.  Organic or not, I’m pretty certain coconut sugar is not on plan.

I was so excited to find this while at the same time realizing it wasn’t peanut flour.  Next time I’ll know.  Meanwhile I guess I’ll use this up.

I bought a box of sixteen Triple Zero yogurts today at Sam’s Club for $12 something.  The downside to buying them in a carton like that is that you have to take what you get:  eight strawberry and eight mixed berry.  I would have much rather had a wider variety from which to choose.  I love the banana creme and someone said the peach is also very good.  Of the ones I’ve tried, I wasn’t too crazy about the coconut creme, and that surprised me because I generally love anything coconut and coconut cream has always been my favorite pie.

Eventually I will also add other shopping lists under the “Pages” on my sidebar menu for quick references.  The prices reflected will be for the Kansas City, Missouri area.001 002 005 006

The Eyes Have It!!

Every night this week at revival we have been greeted by a serving counter full of every kind of cookie imaginable.  All right, that was an exaggeration, but there are a bunch of cookies!

I mentioned them to my daughter on the way to church last night and she hadn’t noticed them.  She wondered why we haven’t been staying afterwards, then, to have some cookies.  Hel-lo?  Really? Was she not paying attention to me on Sunday?  We had had a fellowship dinner after morning worship service in celebration of the return of Jake D’Andrea and his family, and my chair faced the dessert table the entire meal.  Next time I won’t let that happen.

I did a good job picking out healthful foods to eat, all protein and non-starchy veggies, and I even traded in the lemonade my daughter had ordered for me for an unsweetened tea. All was fine and good until . . . my chair faced the dessert table.  Things unraveled pretty quickly after that.  I won’t tempt and torture you by recounting every bite of dessert I had, but I ended up having to allow myself grace for that meal and jumping back on plan three hours later–even though I had started the meal with such good intentions.

Last night I told my daughter we could stay afterwards if she wanted some cookies.  Since she’s in a wheelchair and can’t hold her plate of cookies and wheel herself to the table at the same time, I loaded the three cookies she selected onto her saucer and placed them on the table for her.  Then I headed to the ministry table to buy a music CD, a couple of books, and some preaching CDs.

I kept myself busy, selecting stuff to buy and talking to others, so that I wouldn’t be sitting in the food area, being stared down by some cookies.

In keeping with this week’s theme on “What’s Under Your Tent” and the story of the downfall of Achan, I can testify based on my own experience that the eye (looking) can get a person into trouble.

Just as I was tempted by the dessert table when I gazed at all the wonders that others were loading onto their plates, Achan was tempted by the fancy Babylonian garment and the gold and silver when he saw them (Joshua 7:21).  He looked, he lusted, he looted (taking the garment and gold and silver for himself and burying it in the midst of his tent) and he lost!  Looking is always the first step on the downward spiral to defeat.

Genesis 13:10: And Lot lifted up his eyes, and beheld all the plain of Jordan, that it was well watered every where, before the LORD destroyed Sodom and Gomorrah, even as the garden of the LORD, like the land of Egypt, as thou comest unto Zoar.
Ge:13:11: Then Lot chose him all the plain of Jordan; and Lot journeyed east: and they separated themselves the one from the other.

Lot looked, lusted, looted (chose the plains of Jordan) and lost.

Genesis 3:6: And when the woman saw that the tree was good for food, and that it was pleasant to the eyes, and a tree to be desired to make one wise, she took of the fruit thereof, and did eat, and gave also unto her husband with her; and he did eat.

Eve looked, lusted, looted (took the fruit) and lost.

2 Samuel 11:2: And it came to pass in an eveningtide, that David arose from off his bed, and walked upon the roof of the king’s house: and from the roof he saw a woman washing herself; and the woman was very beautiful to look upon.

David looked, lusted, looted (took another man’s wife for himself) and lost.

The eyes can’t be trusted.  I saw that on Sunday at our fellowship dinner.  I looked at all the sugar-laden desserts that had been brought to the dinner;  I lusted after the cakes, brownies, pies and marshmallow salads;  I looted from the dessert table; and I lost my mind!!!  Not only did I eat my piece of cake and my pistachio pudding salad (or whatever it was), I also tasted my daughter’s desserts and ate what she didn’t want.  Bad Dirinda.  Bad, bad Dirinda.

See what I mean about the eyes?  I’ve learned that, to succeed, I should not put myself into situations of temptation.  I’m not that strong, yet.  Will I ever be?  I don’t know.  Only time will decide that, but, for now, I should walk quickly through the store, loading my cart with only those things on my list, never venturing down the cookie aisle or the fresh baked goods section.

I am making excellent progress on Trim Healthy Mama.  I am down at least sixty-four pounds, but I need to give myself a fighting chance.  I need to be kind to myself and not sabotage all my hard work by yielding to the lust of my eyes.

It helps to make promises, too.  Last night before revival I promised myself that I could have an orange julius when I got home, with all plan-approved ingredients, of course.  I also had two multi-grain Wasa Crispbreads, spread with Neufchâtel cheese and Smuckers Simply Fruit.  Not a bad reward for saying “No, thank you” to the cookie counter! In fact, it was quite a tasty trade-off, a fabulous E snack.



I Wish, I Wish, I Wish

We used to have an old-fashioned ice cream shop on Main Street.  It was in the back corner of our main street pharmacy.

Several years ago I was sitting at the four-way stop when I saw a slender lady coming out of the pharmacy with a big double-decker ice cream cone.  I looked longingly at the ice cream cone and said aloud, “I wish I could eat anything I wanted!”  It didn’t take long before another thought struck me.  “What am I talking about?  I do!”

What I meant was that I wished I could eat anything I wanted and still be as slender as the woman exiting the store, but what I was doing was making presumptions about that woman when, in fact, I didn’t know her at all.  That may have been the first ice cream cone she had had in four months!  Or a year!  I didn’t know how hard she had to work to keep her figure.  I didn’t know what she had eaten for the last two days or what she was going to eat for the next two days in order to make up for the splurge she was allowing herself right at that moment.

The bottom line is, we shouldn’t compare ourselves to others or envy their lives—or the food they put in their mouths—because we just don’t know.  We can’t assume they can eat anything they want and not gain a pound.  We can’t assume they live the life of a couch potato and get to eat like pigs, while we have to suffer along (if we do), denying ourselves (if we do) the mouth-watering treats in which we see others indulge.

For whatever reason, some people have a problem with food while others do not.  Some people have a higher metabolism or work harder and just basically have a higher resistance to fat cells.

2 Corinthians 10:12: For we dare not make ourselves of the number, or compare ourselves with some that commend themselves: but they measuring themselves by themselves, and comparing themselves among themselves, are not wise.

If we wish we were like someone else or if we compare our blessings (or the lack thereof) or shortcomings (or sins) to those of others, the Bible says we are not wise.  We are who we are.  We are who God made us.  Let us own that and deal with that.  Nothing good or godly comes from wishful thinking.

Girl enjoying an ice-cream

Meal Printout by Delena Soukupova!

At the end of this post are two links for something that Delena Soukupova shared on the THM Beginners page.  It is a printout chart (and a cover page for a journal) you can use to keep track of your Trim Healthy Mama meals.

It’s helpful to write down exactly what we’re putting in our mouths, and on weeks we do really well–when we feel better and see the scale moving in the right direction–we can look back to see what our meals looked like!

I think this would be especially helpful to mamas who are just starting out.  That way if they hit a snag they can share their journal with a more experienced Trim Healthy Mama to see where they may have missed the mark.  As a matter of fact, if you have a friend or family member who is just starting out on THM, why not give them a three-ring binder of full of these printouts?  That would make a really thoughtful, encouraging gift!  You could decorate the cover page of the binder, too, or use the journal cover printout below!  I almost want to make myself one now!

A meal journal like this would be ideal to carry with us to our doctors appointments so our doctors can also see what we’ve been eating that has made such an impact on our lab results and weight loss.

I think Delena’s idea is such a good one that I am making these links available on the sidebar menu of my blog under “Pages.”  If you ever lose your printouts or use them all up or want to make copies for gifts, just come here to my blog and find the link in my sidebar!

Click here for your own cool chart to print off where you can record your meals and what category they are.

Click here for Delena’s journal cover!

Click here for alternate journal cover!  Isn’t it great to have choices?  🙂

Click here for Delena’s printout with THM meal page number and water cross-off chart!

Revive Us Again!

Revival begins tonight at our church.  If you have ever heard Jake D’Andrea (from the Chicago area) preach, you know what a treat is in store for us this week!

He comes here to Faith Baptist Church in Higginsville, Missouri every two years, and we always receive a blessing from his ministry.  By now, his children are growing up–the oldest is sixteen already–and what a musically talented group of individuals they are!  We are enjoying special music by his family every night.

“We praise Thee, O God!
For Thy Spirit of light,
Who hath shown us our Savior,
And scattered our night.”

Amen!  I was thinking this afternoon on my bus route how Trim Healthy Mama has, in a sense, “scattered my night” in relation to food and diets. Eight months into this eating plan and having slowly gained more knowledge and freedom from the bondage of food, the fog has lifted a little and everything makes more and more sense to me all the time: this whole “separating fats and carbs” thing and waiting three hours in between meals and snacks.

For me, keeping it simple has been a godsend.  I don’t do huge, complicated menus, and I’m not a big planner.  Often, when I wake up in the morning, I have no idea what I’m fixing for dinner.

Eventually maybe I will venture into new territory and try lots of new stuff.  For now, I know what works for me, and that’s “easy.”  “Easy” works for me.  If that’s baked oatmeal every morning and smoothies every afternoon, then that’s what it is.

If I ever get bored with those (fat chance!), then I’ll do something different.  As a matter of fact, I have been doing something different from my baked oatmeal for the past week or so, but not because I’ve gotten tired of the baked oatmeal.  I’ve suddenly developed some mad cravings for mocha Fat-Stripping Frappas from page 241 in the book (the “mocha” part I added myself; I just put in a heaping teaspoon of instant coffee when I’m tossing everything into my Nutribullet), so I’ve been making those every morning.  A few mornings, to turn it from an FP to an E, I added two pieces of Ezekiel toast to that, with a tablespoon of Neufchâtel cheese and some Smuckers Simply Fruit.  Now THAT’S an easy breakfast!

I feel that my mind is being renewed day by day by day.  When I get up in the morning my first thought is no longer “What time will I have to leave the house this morning in order to allow myself enough time to get some donuts on the way to work?”  I am FREE from that kind of thinking!  Now I start thinking, “Do I want to mix an oatmeal together before I get ready for work or do I want to have a mocha frappe again with maybe some toast?”

My mind is being renewed and my health is being REVIVED!

“Hallelujah! Thine the glory.
Hallelujah! Amen.
Hallelujah! Thine the glory.
Revive us again.”


Food is Fuel, Not Entertainment

Before Trim Healthy Mama, I was a grazer. My husband said it shouldn’t take much effort for me to lose weight because I didn’t eat that much, anyway, and I already loved all kinds of healthful foods, like most vegetables and fruits, for instance.

That was easy for him to say because he didn’t follow me around all day! He didn’t know about that handful of Cheez-Its here or a few Sour Patch Kids there or a handful of peanuts or the bag of M&Ms or the McFrappe after work or the two donuts and maybe even a gourmet hot chocolate BEFORE work.

If I were going to succeed at Trim Healthy Mama, all that in-between-meal stuff was going to have to stop. Immediately.

This thought came to me the other day, probably while I was fueling my bus (it gives me lots of time to think. LOL): We don’t fill our car up with gas and then drive around for a couple of blocks, only to turn back to the gas station and fill it up again—so why do we do this to our bodies?

Trim Healthy Mama has brought several “light-bulb” moments into my life. The primary one, I would have to say, has been that I have learned to view food as fuel instead of entertainment.

If I grab a Reese’s peanut butter cup an hour after my lunch, is that needed fuel? NO! In fact, it isn’t fuel at all! It’s sugar! Would we, in the middle of the afternoon, pour a scoop of sugar into the gas tank of our car? Of course, we wouldn’t! If we did, we surely wouldn’t get too far without having to pay some pretty hefty mechanical repair bills!

Why, then, would we do that to our bodies? I can’t think of a single good reason. In the long run, we will be paying hefty bills for that, too, only in the form of doctors visits and medications.

The bottom line is, it doesn’t matter how many healthful foods I enjoy. I will not be healthy if I supplement the healthful food with poison.

Would it make sense if I were to say, “I don’t understand it; I had a healthful breakfast of bacon and eggs, a nice salad for lunch, a glass of chocolate milk and four Reese’s peanut butter cups for my afternoon snack, and a juicy steak with a side of steamed broccoli for dinner—how is it that I’m not losing any weight?! Look at all that healthy food I had today!”? Drinking a glass 99% full of pure, refreshing water, with just one percent of cyanide, will still kill you.

If we dump sugar into our bodies instead of fuel, we pay the consequences. The number on the scale doesn’t move in the right direction, and our bodies get sluggish and our minds foggy. Did we wonder why we needed so many naps before THM?

Garbage in, garbage out. We can’t expect to put garbage into our bodies and walk away from that poor decision with healthy results.

Repeat after me: “Food is fuel, not entertainment. Food is fuel, not entertainment.” The next time you stop to put fuel in your car, ask yourself, “Is putting fuel in my car for entertainment purposes?” No, you only put fuel in your car because it’s necessary—not because it’s fun! It’s time to grant your body that same consideration!

Filling in the Gaps

This blog reflects my weight-loss journey.  On this page you will read many things pertaining to the Trim Healthy Mama plan because this is the plan of action I have chosen to achieve my goal.

I don’t want to invalidate any other plans or programs that people are using to fit their own lifestyles, but THM is a great plan because I don’t want to count.  Math has never been my strong suit, anyway! LOL I don’t want to count calories, and I don’t want to count points.  Rarely do I even count carbs. I do “simple,” and, so far, Trim Healthy Mama has been extremely simple.

In this blog, you will find many posts about food and recipes, too, but this is NOT a “food”blog.  This is the story of my ongoing journey of shedding pounds and reclaiming health for my life.  Of course, that will incorporate lots of posts about FOOD, but it is not ALL about food.

It’s about my life: my emotions, my family, my job, my likes and dislikes, my opinions.

Life is not always pretty, pleasant or perfect, but it is what it is and our goal should be to make the most of it with what God has given us–and He has given us a LOT.

My hope is that you will find some humor along the way, as well as inspiration, motivation, helpful information (tips, pointers, etc.), and, yes, of course, even recipes.

Bear with me as I fill in the gaps with old posts to make a more complete story of my weight-loss journey.

As of today, I have lost sixty-four pounds since mid-July on the Trim Healthy Mama plan!  I am thrilled that you have come along for the ride!  Welcome!


DeliciouS S Meal to End a Traumatic Day

It was a pretty traumatic day here at the Lacen household.  No details, but it was significantly distressing.

This could be a long story, but it won’t be.  You’re welcome.

I was away from home for most of the day.

My husband called me after he got off work and said, “I know you haven’t been home all day and probably haven’t had a chance to think about dinner, so do I need to stop and get something?”

“No, no,” I replied.  “Come on home.  I’m cooking steaks right now.  By the time you get home they should be ready.”

And they were.  They were both ready and mouth-wateringly delectable.  I seasoned them with just salt, pepper and a little garlic powder.

My meals were unfortunately separated by more than three hours today, but I did the best I could with the kind of day I had.

Chuck had steak and mashed potatoes, but, of course, I chose the more healthful route and had this!  S all the way, baby!

Tomorrow is a new day, but I’m feeling pretty good about today, considering the circumstances beyond my control.

I’m especially feeling good because of my SIXTY-FOUR pound weight loss that I discovered this morning!  YES!  From here on out it will only get better.  I can feel it!


THM Funny and SCALE Victory!

Last night we had cheesy chicken enchiladas.  That would have been an S had I not been starving.  I ate two instead of just the one I had planned to eat.  “Oh, well,” I reasoned.  “That puts me at twelve carbs, but I can still consider that a healthy crossover.”  Then, as I sat here working on my blog, transferring old entries and photos over from Word, I also ate probably a cup or so of the popcorn my hubby popped yesterday to munch on while he watched the opening day of March Madness.

I hadn’t weighed for a while so I stepped on the scales this morning and rejoiced to see that I had lost two more pounds.  My weight loss had finally reached sixty-three pounds.  I was just almost ready to see another number in the tens column!

I did my twenty minutes on the treadmill and worked on my blog again for a while when I felt I needed to use the restroom.

Just for kicks and grins I decided to weigh again.  WOW!!!!!!!  A new number in the tens column!  Sixty-four pounds!!!

This was cause for celebration!  I raced to the family room to grab my camera!  Back to the bathroom I dashed.  I was so prepared to plaster the photo with my new weight all over cyber space–even though I knew that some people who saw it would say, “WHAT?!  She’s sharing THAT?  If I weighed that much I would DIE.  I would tell absolutely NO ONE!”

I stepped back on the scales and my countenance fell.  “How in the WORLD did I gain 1.6 pounds just by running into the other room to grab my …CAMERA!!!”  Duh.  Oh, boy.  Well, I guess now we know how much my CAMERA weighs!


Piping Rock Protein Isolate

Maybe I’ve been lazy lately, but I’ve had this as my E breakfast for a couple of times now. It’s two pieces of Ezekiel toast with one tablespoon of 1/3 less fat cheese that starts with an “N” (that is kind of like cream cheese…LOL…okay, it’s neufchatel) and scrapings out of an almost-empty jar of Polaner’s all-fruit, along with my mocha FSF. The serving size on the cheese says two tablespoons with the total fat grams of four, so I’m thinking I’m definitely safe with only one to keep it under my five grams of fat for an E meal.

Last night I found out that the strawberry cheesecake shake is just as delicious with only one tablespoon of cream cheese (whether it’s the 1/3 less fat kind or not) and only 1/4 cup cottage cheese and maybe half a cup of strawberries (it’s all I had left in the bag). Oh, my word! Let me say again (in all caps for emphasis) YOU CAN’T BEAT PIPING ROCK WHEY PROTEIN POWDER for PRICE or yumminess! Do I miss my old Swanson’s? Not at all! Whoever it was who turned me onto Piping Rock, thank you and God bless you! My daughter and I use it EVERY single day. We’ve just opened our fifth tub of it!

Girls, I’m not kidding. CHEAP and DELICIOUS. Piping Rock Whey Protein Isolate is a great value with FREE shipping on every order!

Just type “cheap whey protein isolate” into your browser window and it should pop right up.