Sunday, January 25, 2009

Fun Monday - A Change in Lifestyle

Grace of Mama Rehema is this week's Fun Monday hostess. Grace is asking the participants to share information about a diet. We can discuss diets that we have tried and tell what we liked or did not like about the diet. Grace encourages us to tell about one diet that you had so much success with, or another that was a torture to follow or both.

I am very happy the Grace has selected this particular topic for this Fun Monday. I have been thinking about writing about my adventures in dieting for a few weeks. Like many dieters, I have become somewhat of a zealot in promoting the diet that works for me. On the other hand, I am somewhat self-conscious about discussing weight. Most of my life, I have been fortunate to be slim. Even as I aged and added some pounds, my height of 5'7" hid some of the extra pounds that I had gained over the past seven or so years. However, I developed a double chin and a tummy paunch, which is definitely not desirable.

Yet, no longer being svelte did not induce me to lose weight. My weight loss was almost accidental, and I lost about 25 pounds in about six months. The plan that we followed is The G.I. Diet developed by Rick Gallop. Here is how this came about. In June2008, my husband and I were at a party, and Daddy D mentioned that he felt tired much of the time. A friend suggested that he might have more energy by losing a few pounds by trying the G.I. Diet. Daddy D like me is tall (he is actually a lot taller at 6'3".) We, tall people, tend to hide our weight gains over our long frames.

So off to the bookstore, we went to purchase both The G.I. Diet and The G.I. Diet Express by Rick Gallop . The Glycemic Index or G.I. Diet by Gallop is based on the premise that all foods are traffic-light color-coded. Green light foods are acceptable foods for the diet and include most fruits and vegetables, fresh fish, fish packed in water, lean meats, whole wheat pastas, almonds, oatmeal, skim milk, fat-free cheese, fat free yogurt to name a few of the main choices.

The plan essentially consists of eating three meals including only the foods from the extensive green light list. Additionally to stave off hunger, dieters are encouraged to eat snacks between meals, again choosing foods from the green light list. Frequently, our snacks consist of plain yogurt with fresh fruit or flavored fat-free yogurt. Another snack time favorite is almonds.
I highly recommend the G.I. Diet. My husband has lost almost 20 pounds, and I lost 25 pounds because I followed his diet. Even though I did have a few pounds to lose and I am very happy with the results, I was following this diet partly for convenience. I probably have reached the yellow light phase of the diet, which is the maintenance phase. In this phase, a few more foods such as bananas, corn, red wine, and unsweetened fruit juices are permitted in addition to the green light foods. Red light foods such as bacon, peanut butter, and Jello should always be avoided. As my title suggests, this is not really a diet as such but a change in lifestyle with a "healthy balanced eating plan to guide you the rest of your life." (Gallop)

In addition to actually losing weight, there are some other positive aspects of the G.I. Diet. The green light foods or foods with a low glycemic index break down slowly leaving the dieter feeling fuller longer. Furthermore, there is no calorie counting, measuring, or quotas.
This is me some 25 pounds thinner than last June without a double chin or tummy paunch. (Sorry No Before Picture)
For a different aspect of this dieting adventure, check out our team blog, Mama Said, Papa Said .

Sunday, January 18, 2009

Fun Monday - Second Anniversary Edition

Welcome to the Second Anniversary Celebration of Fun Monday. For this week's assignment Julie of Another Chance Ranch is asking us to show pictures inside our door. So without further fanfare, please step inside. If you are a regular visitor to my house, you would come to the back door. Would you like a cup of coffee, or how about a cup of hot tea? Have a seat at the kitchen table. I thought about showing you the white metal cabinets last week for our quirky Fun Monday. We considered replacing these, but new expensive wooden cabinets might overwhelm our modest decor. However, we do have a very nice ceramic tile floor installed by our own, Daddy D.

However, if this is your first visit, you might enter by the front door. Have a seat. We bought the couch many years ago with a paltry raise, but the couch does include fold-out bed. Besides that, the sofa is comfy and is still in good condition. I will make that coffee now. Would you like cream or sugar? Perhaps, you prefer to sit in the rocking chair. Daddy D bought the antique chair to rock our second baby, Luke, to sleep. Luke is now expecting his second baby on February 5th. One of my favorite pieces in the living room is the octagon-shaped rug; we had it custom-made. Most of the furniture in the room was handed down from our parents or made by my husband's grandfather.

I hope that you enjoyed your visit. We will be sure to keep the porch light on, but perhaps we should buy a new fixture.

Monday, January 12, 2009

Fun Monday - Big and Bad

This week's Fun Monday host is the kind and compassionate, Jan of The Prytz Family. For this Monday's assignment, Jan is asking that we answer the question, "What is the quirkiest thing in your home that you will never give away?"

For your viewing pleasure, I submit two items.This Big Boy bank is from my oldest son. Big Boy is or was a mascot for a sandwich that was sold at several restaurant chains including Shoney's and Frisch's. I think that this Big Boy is from Azar's, which was a popular food chain in Indiana. Dean gave this to me as a gift for Mother's Day, when he was in high school. Who wouldn't love such a unique gift? Additionally, this reminds of some good old days of my youth when drive-in restaurants were the rage. You could even order a Big Boy hamburger with fries, and the server would bring your order right out to your car.

Another treasure that I will keep forever was painted by my creative sister-in-law, REM. The very first car that I paid for myself was a 1970 Gremlin made by American Motors. My sister-in-law thoughtfully painted a toy Gremlin to match my cute little car, which looked like a toy itself. My car did not have the supercharger as featured on the toy. Unfortunately, the real Gremlin as cute as it was never ran very well. Maybe the car would have run better with a supercharger. The bright green finish on the Gremlin was called Big Bad Green. Isn't that a great name for a wonderful color? (We did get rid of the car, but the toy Gremlin sits atop my computer.0

The Big Bad Green Gremlin by REM.

Me and my Big Bad Green Gremlin Green

Sunday, January 4, 2009

Maybe Leopards Can't...but We Can - Fun Monday.

Faye of Summit Musings is the hostess for this week's Fun Monday. The topic Faye is asking us to write about for the first Fun Monday of 2009 is, "What's on your mind lately?" One of the themes that has been playing over in my mind is the possibility of personal transformation as well as the potential social reformation. This topic occupies my thoughts as I ponder how to reach my New Year's goal of becoming more organized in 2009. Additionally, a provocative discussion today in our Sunday school class about the ability or inability of people to make significant life changes has caused me to reflect on the topic of personal transformation and the broader topic of social change.

I maintain that people can and do make substantive life changes. People do stop smoking or stop using drugs. Others do become kinder and gentler. Failing students do buckle down and begin to study. Overweight people do lose weight and become thinner.

In addition to people making personal changes, I think that society can and has changed for the better. Even though horrific events are happening as I write this post, I think that we have made some positive moral steps forward as a society throughout history. The signing of the Magna Carta in 1215, the formation of the United Nations, and ending of Apartheid in South Africa are examples of society striving to improve.

In the United States through the actions of civil rights leaders like Martin Luther King and others, we have changed from a nation where only white male property owners had full rights of citizenship to a country where all free adult citizens can vote and own property. We have changed from a country with segregated accommodations, schools, and transportation to a country that elected a man with a Kenyan father to be president of the United States.

Of course usually, the only way a personal goal can be reached is if we work towards that goal. And perhaps, the only way that society changes for the better is if we work together for the greater good. I am confident that we can do both.

Thursday, January 1, 2009

Happy New Year - New Beginnings

Lycaena hyllus, a bronze copper butterfly, on garlic cloves from my new 2009 World Wildlife Fund Butterflies Calendar
Rather liking the chance to start over, I take pleasure in taking down the calendar from the spent year and tacking up the calendar of the brand new year. I even like turning the page of the calendar to a new month. Although one can make changes in one's life at any moment, a change in the year provides us with a definite time frame to make positive changes in our lives. I welcome this opportunity to reflect on the past year and to design life transformations for the upcoming year. Yes, I do know that people are not always able to accomplish these hoped for goals. However, people do make changes for the better. Some actually quit smoking, others lose weight, and others are kinder, more compassionate. Furthermore, even people that fail to accomplish a desired outcome, can try again at a later time. So here is to new beginnings, may 2009 be a very successful year for you and your loved ones. (I am going to work on being more organized.)