May 2018

May 2018

Thursday, January 31, 2013

Preparing for Paris

Six weeks from tomorrow, we leave for Paris.  It's a city so rich in art and history, it can be overwhelming when creating a nine-day itinerary.  Nevertheless, I'm giving it my best shot.

So far, I've booked a full-day tour of the Loire Valley, which includes several castles.  And I got notice yesterday that our Rail Europe tickets to Tours, France, where the tour begins, are in the mail.  I've also booked our Behind the Scenes tour of the Eiffel Tower.  In addition, I've created plans, including museums, restaurants, markets, and shops, for different sections of Paris, which was no small feat.

Paris museums and restaurants set their own operating days and times, which often make little sense.  For example, I might decide to spend Monday in the Marais only to discover our must-see museum in that area is closed that day when most other Paris museums are closed on Tuesdays. Nevertheless, after much research, I feel I'm getting close to a final itinerary.

I've also started planning my wardrobe for the trip.  Last Saturday I met my shopping friend and found the perfect coat.  It took some doing, but I was finally successful at Dillard's, purchasing my first London Fog coat at a nice sale price.

As the planning moves forward, I'm getting more and more excited.  By the time March arrives, I know we'll be more than ready (and well prepared!) to celebrate the sale of our business and 40 years of marriage with a once-in-a-lifetime trip.  Let the countdown begin!

Wednesday, January 30, 2013

Weigh In

During the last 31 days, I've worked out 25 days.  For the most part, I've been burning 300 calories in 30-minute sessions on the stationary bike.  But, if it's 50+ degrees outside, I'll take a 30-minute neighborhood walk instead.  I weighed in last Saturday and found I had lost four pounds, which equates to a pound a week.  While I'm pleased with the weight lose, I'm not thrilled with the realization that, in my 60s, I now need to work out twice as much as I used to for the same results.

There are so many things I'd rather be doing than exercising.  But I'm determined to continue using LoseIt! to keep my calorie intake between 1200 and 1300 calories a day; and working out 5-6 times a week.  At this point in my life, doing what's right for my body is more about staying healthy than looking good.  Plus, I truly do like how I feel, more toned and energized, when I'm working out regularly.

Currently, I'm watching episodes of The West Wing while I bike, and just started season four.  There are seven seasons in total, so I should be good for another month.  The series would take me longer, but I'm finding myself watching episodes at other times during the day and evening, also. I'm a bit hooked.

For me, a good television show makes working out 100% more tolerable.  So I need to find another series through Netflix Instant Watch I can start after The West Wing.  I'll check out any suggestions you send me.  If nothing else, however, I'll have no problem re-watching the Doc Martin series.

In keeping with my decision to no longer obsess over how much I weigh, I've decided to only weigh in once a month instead of once a week.  Therefore, I won't be posting another weight-lose update until late February.  In the meantime, I'll be counting and moving, and praying I don't get sick!

Saturday, January 26, 2013

Congratulations, Elliott!

What a cutie!
My oldest grandson, Elliott, won third place in his first Pinewood Derby today!

Elliott absolutely loves being a Scout.  And, even better, his dad seems to enjoy, too.
So far, it's been a fantastic father and son experience.

Thursday, January 24, 2013

Pleasant Surprise

Today was my appointment with the dermatologist.  Of course, she only works Tuesdays and Thursdays, which is when I watch my youngest grandson, Jonah.  But, surprisingly, Jonah behaved well even though we had a 40-minute wait.  After nearly an hour, we finally left with a manufacturer's coupon for a prescription eczema cream to be picked up at the pharmacy.

When I got to the pharmacy, I braced myself because the last eczema cream cost me over $100. After learning the prescription wouldn't be ready until tomorrow, I bravely asked how much I would owe.  The pharmacist said, "it's over $200, but I was told you have a coupon."  Somewhat in shock, and not expecting a coupon to make much of a dent, I turned over the coupon and waited while the pharmacist entered the code into the computer.  When she told me I would owe nothing, I went into full blown shock!

The pharmacist said, after insurance, the bill was $275 before she entered the coupon code.  She was clearly as surprised as I was to find the coupon covered all of the out-of-pocket amount. Needless to say, I'm beyond thrilled.  Nevertheless, I still have to wonder what could make an eczema cream cost so much.  But one thing's for sure, at that price, it dang well better fix the problem!

Saturday, January 19, 2013

Snow in Paris

This picture was taken Friday night, the second time it snowed in Paris last week.  Snow is unusual in the City of Light, so the Parisians are enjoying it as you can clearly see.  Look hard enough and you'll also see the Eiffel Tower, during one of its light shows that take place on the hour beginning 60 minutes after sunset.  So cool!  Pun intended :)

Courtesy of

Thursday, January 17, 2013

Eczema Attack

Today I decided it's time to see the dermatologist, again.  For 19 years, I've been fighting hand eczema, dry cracking and flaking patches on my fingers and thumbs.  I've tried numerous over-the-counter hand creams with no improvement.  So, about every 2-3 years, when I get tired of the daily pain and the need to wear multiple bandaids every day, I call the dermatologist.

I try to put off going to the doctor as long as possible.  The last time I got a prescription cream, it cost me over $100 despite the fact insurance covered a large percentage and the manufacturer offered a $25 coupon.  Fortunately, however, the prescription did help.  But, unfortunately, my last one expired over a year ago.

I should just move to the ocean.  The only complete cure I've found for an eczema attack is sea water.  It never fails.  After three days at the beach, my hands are completely healed.

For sure, I could easily become a snowbird.  Spending winter months in the sand, sun, and surf sounds like heaven to me.  Especially since they would be eczema-free months.

Sunday, January 13, 2013

Birthday Card/Mini Album

I finished the birthday card slash mini album and just posted it to my project blog, DGPaperDesigns.  I'm still not set up for good close-up pictures, but I believe the post gives you a good idea of what I've done anyway.  It feels so good to be creating again!

Friday, January 11, 2013

Friday Fun Day

What a beautiful day!  Instead of the stationary bike, I took my workout outside, doing my regular warm-weather neighborhood walk.  I shaved five minutes off my usual time, so it seems daily workouts are paying off.  It was just the incentive I needed to stay the course.

Then, this afternoon, I finally got back to paper-crafting.  I'm currently working on a special birthday card that's more like a mini album.  Next I'll either start on Valentine's Day cards or a Christmas mini album of the grandsons.

Whatever the project, I need to keep at it, so I have time to do some Easter crafts before our trip.  I'm especially looking forward to using Graphic 45's Secret Garden collection to be released next month.

My plan is to keep Fridays all my own with no chores, appointments, or errands.  Today was another one of my Friday Fun Days.

Tuesday, January 8, 2013

What I've Been Doing

Since time seems to be flying, I decided to take a minute to appreciate what I've accomplished over the last several days.

First, I reconciled the company books for 2012 and emailed all the documents to the accountant today.  Unfortunately, we will not be filing our final corporate tax return in 2013.  My hope, however, is to wrap up all the lose ends by the end of March, so we only have one quarter of business to report in 2014.

I also finally took down all the Christmas decorations, which was a big relief.  I was more than ready to get my clutter-free home back again.  Of course, our Valentine boy (our oldest grandson, Elliott) is now eager to see the return of all grandma's Valentine's Day decorations.  But grandma needs a little break.  Maybe all the hearts will come out next week.

Plus I got rid of more unwanted and unused clothes and accessories.  And I'm happy to report that, since December 31, there's been only one day I didn't log 30 minutes on the stationary bike.

So that's what I've been doing in between laundry, meal prep, house cleaning, and daily research for our upcoming Paris trip.  It's no wonder the days are flying by!

Friday, January 4, 2013

Four Decades of Love

Tomorrow hubby and I will be married 40 years.  How lucky am I that the man I married four decades ago is still my favorite person to be with?  In fact, my favorite time of day is evening when we're together watching a television show or movie.  Sometimes we talk, but most nights we simply enjoy being comforted by each other's presence.

When it's right, marriage is the best gift.  For me, it's the best decision I ever made.

Happy anniversary, Jim!  I love you still.

Wednesday, January 2, 2013

So Far So Good

So far I'm feeling good about the new year.  Beginning New Year's Eve, I've been on the stationary bike 30 minutes everyday, burning 300 calories each session.  I've also been successfully staying within my calorie limit set by LoseIt! to lose 1.5 pounds a week.  I realize it's only been three days, but I'm "patting myself on the back" anyway.

I also started a major purge of items I no longer use or want, beginning with my closet.  Yesterday I went through all my hanging clothes, and most of my shoes, and ended up with two extra large trash bags for charity.  Since I typically do two wardrobe purges a year, in order to fill two trash bags, I obviously purged with no mercy yesterday.  And that's my plan for the entire house.

I'm on the path of shedding stuff and weight.  I know getting rid of unwanted stuff will be much easier than dropping weight.  But, nevertheless, I'm currently feeling extremely focused and determined, which I also know is vital to the weight-lose process.  Yes, I'm feeling good!