6:03 AM Posted by Roo

I followed-up with the pain clinic this morning and they are very pleased with my reaction to the diagnostic shots and think the injections on the 10th will do the trick and last for at least 6-12 months. YAY!!!! I am so stinkin excited, yo!

the power of one: check-in #4

4:53 PM Posted by Roo

Power of One Challenge

Challenge Starting Weight: 198.1
Change This Week: -1.0
Change for The Power of One Challenge: -1.2*
Total Pounds Gone since 9-8-2010: -6.8

Down 1 pound!

Slow and steady, right?

*disclaimer...I suck at math. I had to readjust this # based on my weight this week. I have no idea where I screwed up. {sigh}

back injuries suck

5:45 PM Posted by Roo

After a series of 3 epidural steroid injections into my low back since July of last year, I headed back to the pain clinic today. The most recent procedure helped a lot of the leg pain that radiated down from the herniated disc but it did nothing for my low back/butt pain.

There really hasn't been much in the way of consistency as far as the pain goes. It can be really high one day and low another. Regardless of pain level, bending, running, barely kicking my leg, loading/unloading the dishwasher, picking up toys, laundry, etc. hurt. And gymnastics in my daughter's Mommy & Me class? Torture. Because she wants Mommy to bear crawl with her among other things and ohmywerd it kills me.

I went to the clinic anticipating another injection into my spine but after talking with the doctor (and agreeing that surgery is not an option at this point) we went a different route. Because the majority of the pain is all the way across my back now (where before it was isolated to the left side only), he performed a lumbar medical branch block which consisted of 3 diagnostic injections into the nerves in my low back. This was done to see if I would actually get relief from the pain. If I did get relief the plan was to follow-up with a lumbar radiofrequency ablation in about a week.

The good news is that I had a few hours of zero pain today post injection. It was an awesome feeling. The doctor told me to go home and do whatever hurts my back. I ran, kickboxed (kicked my leg high enough to hit the bridge of my husband's nose - not literally hit it but parallel with it), did jumping jacks, bent, squatted, crawled on the floor. ALL WITHOUT PAIN!!!!! Guys, this was such an AMAZING feeling.

Now, about 7 hours post testing my back is bothering me again but that's okay because I know this will work when I go back to get the full lumbar ablation done (currently scheduled for February 10th). And the good news is that it should last 6-12 months. When the new nerves regenerate in my back I may have to have it done again but shouldn't need it any more frequently than every 6 months.

My 6 year old looked at me today and said, "Mom, does that mean we can run together?" Yes. It. Does.

*happy dance*

one. more. shot.

10:09 AM Posted by Roo

Okay, so it's no secret that (A) my back is still giving me problems and (B) the last cortisone shot really didn't work (that was shot #3). For insurance reasons I couldn't go back to the pain clinic until this month. I've put it off long enough as the pain most days is horrible. It's odd though - Disney weekend the only day my back hurt was Sunday and that was only for a few hours. I contributed it to the really sucky bed. But I dunno. I mean I walked A LOT that weekend and my back only bothered me for a few hours Sunday morning? That (to me anyway) just doesn't make sense. I've done walking here at a leisurely pace similar to that weekend but the pain doesn't leave. I don't understand. So Thursday I go back to the pain clinic. Another shot, more tests, a different approach? I'm not really sure what to expect. I just want the pain to stop without popping pain killers.

my daily to-do list

7:34 AM Posted by Roo

Wake up, stretch, yawn and remind yourself that you choose to be happy.


Shower, brush teeth, get dressed, throw on a little makeup.


Make your babies breakfast and shower them with hugs and kisses.


Don’t forget to eat breakfast, too! And while you’re at it, fill up your water bottle and take your vitamins.


Depending on the day, do what needs done – school drop-off, run errands, work, dishes, laundry.


School pick-up (if it’s a school day), after-school snack time, homework and dinner.


Dinner clean-up, baths, bedtime complete with silly stories, hugs and kisses.


Work, if you still have things that need to be taken care of. If not, relax, watch TV, read a book…do something for you.


Lights out at 10:00 PM.


day book journal - january 22nd

3:00 AM Posted by Roo

The one and only time I posted a day book journal was August 7th. I thought it would be fun to do it again.

Outside my window... it's cold.

I am thinking...
that I have done too much laundry in the last 24 hours (that's what having a sick kid will do to ya!).

I am thankful for...
a husband that works hard so I can stay home with our kids

Around the house... toys, toys and more toys.

I am wearing... a sleep shirt.

I am loving... my new blog design!

I am hoping... to snap out of the funk I'm in mentally.

I am drooling over... a camera bag that I have wanted for months.

I am sorely tempted by... peanut butter, at the moment.

I am reading... The Crossroads Cafe by Deborah Smith.

On my iPod...
I haven't used my iPod in months.

On my mind...
the whole public school versus charter school decision we will be making in the next few months.

On my To Do List...
make appointment with eye doctor - I'm all out of contact lenses!

From my picture journal... my cowboy from last weekend's farm show.


chicken pot pie soup & a video review!

5:23 PM Posted by Roo

It makes me happy when my children enjoy eating things that are good for them. This recipe for chicken pot pie soup is no exception. First, the recipe. Then, a video review from my 6 year old.

Chicken Pot Pie Soup

(link to original recipe from skinnytaste.com)

POINTS Plus: 6
Serving Size: 1.5 cups
Servings: 6

1/4 cup flour (to make gluten-free use 2 tbsp cornstarch instead)
2 cups water
4 cups fat-free milk
1 large celery stalk, chopped
1/2 medium onion, chopped
8 oz sliced baby portabella mushrooms
2 chicken bouillons
fresh ground pepper
pinch of thyme
10 oz frozen classic mixed veggies (peas, carrots, green beans, corn)
2 potatoes, peeled and cubed small
16 oz cooked chicken breast, diced small

Create a slurry by combining 1/2 cup of the cold water with flour (or cornstarch) in a medium bowl and whisk until well blended. Set aside.

Pour remaining water and milk into a large pot and slowly bring to a boil. Add celery, onion, mushrooms, chicken bouillon, thyme, fresh pepper, frozen veggies and return to a boil. Partially cover and simmer on low until vegetables are soft, about 20 minutes. Remove lid, add potatoes and cook until soft, about 5 minutes. Add chicken, and slowly whisk in slurry, stirring well as you add. Cook another 2-3 minutes, until soup thickens, adjust salt and pepper to taste and serve.

Calories 253.8, Fat 1.8g, Protein 27.7g, Carbs 31.9g, Fiber 3.4g

And now? What my 6 year old thinks of the soup:

a surprise

2:34 PM Posted by Roo

I needed a pick-me-up. A new layout will be installed this weekend (tonight, possibly!). So if you click through and everything looks wonky it's just me fixing things up.

a new favorite - crock pot chicken taco chili

7:10 AM Posted by Roo

Guys, you MUST try this recipe. For realz. It is DELICIOUS. My 6 year old will eat at least 2 servings and he's a picky, picky eater.

I served ours over brown rice but you could get creative and serve it over tortilla chips, pasta, etc. Just remember to count the extra Points/calories. Or serve it as is. It's delicious that way, too!

Crock Pot Chicken Taco Chili

(link to original recipe from skinnytaste.com)

POINTS Plus: 5
Serving Size: 1-1/4 cups
Servings: 10

1 onion, chopped
16 oz can black beans
16 oz can kidney beans
8 oz tomato sauce
10 oz frozen corn kernels
2 – 14.5 oz cans diced tomatoes with chilies
1 packet taco seasoning (I make my own - recipe can be found here.)
1 tbsp cumin
1 tbsp chili powder
24 oz (3-4) boneless skinless chicken breasts
Chili peppers, chopped (optional)
¼ cup chopped fresh cilantro

Combine beans, onion, chili peppers, corn, tomato sauce, cumin, chili powder and taco seasoning in slow cooker. Place chicken on top and cover. Cook on low for 10 hours or on high for 6 hours. Half hour before serving, remove chicken and shred. Return chicken to slow cooker and stir in. Top with fresh cilantro. Also try it with low fat cheese and sour cream (extra Points+).

Calories 203.7, Fat 1.4g, Protein 16.9g, Carbs 33.3g, Fiber 10.0g

the power of one: check-in #3

4:34 PM Posted by Roo

Power of One Challenge

Challenge Starting Weight: 198.1
Change This Week: -1.0
Change for The Power of One Challenge: -0.3
Total Pounds Gone since 9-8-2010: -5.8

Down 1 pound! {insert happy dance}

Carry on.

power of one: january project #2

8:47 PM Posted by Roo

I keep putting this post off. Why? Because I don't want to write it. I'm afraid I'll look back on this 6 months from now and not have accomplished anything. However, I'm slowly learning that sometimes always it's just the fear of the unknown that scares me. (It's only taken me 34 years to come to this conclusion. I'm insanely bright.)

Writing down my plans and goals for my life shouldn't scare me. Sure, I may have to adjust some things along the way but without a plan I'm just hobbling along making the best of my situation instead of taking the bull by the horns and making my life the life that I want.

So what is it that I want?

Physical Goals

Conquer my back problems: May will be one year since I injured my back. I still have no idea what I did to cause it, but during my training for the San Diego Half Marathon I managed to develop a herniated disc. I've had 3 cortisone injections and while the first 2 helped relieve pain for a little while the 3rd one did not. I don't really know what to do. I don't want to have an invasive surgical procedure but what would other options be?

I know that walking doesn't bother me. Oodles of walking in Orlando last weekend proved that. Running does hurt. So my short term plan is to walk 3 days a week and do Pilates the other 3 days to build up my core and strengthen my abs and back. I'll plan to take one day off a week (either Saturday or Sunday).

This is my start. I know I'll need to readjust this at some point and make a decision on fixing my disc problems.

5K by June: This goal stems from the previous one. I WILL walk a 5K by June. I found a few this Spring on Active.com and will sign-up for one of those. I will also plan to take part in the 5K at Fitbloggin. Until I can figure out my back it will be a walking 5K. Walking it is definitely better than not doing it at all, right? Right.

Get within 10 lbs of my goal weight by end of 2011: I'll admit, this is the scariest of them all. 40 pounds is what I need to lose to get within 10 pounds of my goal weight. 50 pounds would actually get me to goal. I know this is feasible because I lost 60 pounds in 11 months back in 2003; so 40 pounds in 11.5 months is reasonable and healthy. Getting there will take some serious discipline from me though. I will need to stick to my exercise plan of walking and Pilates and I will have to keep my eating and Points in check. Daily.

Other Goals

To better manage my time: This is a really general goal but the long and short of it is I want to put myself on a schedule. I thrive on routine and having a to-do list. With no routine at all I don't feel like doing anything and/or I get so overwhelmed I don't know where to start. I have started working on a daily schedule for myself and am going to do my best to stick with it. It's actually 90% done. I need to tweak it a bit and I plan to start working with that schedule on Tuesday. (Tomorrow is a play day - movies with my kids and my nieces!)

Research alternate schooling for my kids: This one overwhelms me so much; but I'm not happy with the school we put our 6 year old in this year. I don't like the hours he's away or knowing that he's in a class full of kids with anger issues, bullying problems, etc. I get that dealing with difficult peers is part of life but I don't believe that at 6 he should be forced to deal with these things.

If I could turn back the clock 6 months we wouldn't have moved to the area we chose if for no other reason but the school system. But as it stands now we've purchased a home and this is where we are so I need to do something.

I've gotten some information from an awesome friend on charter schooling and am going to start reading everything I can get my hands on and researching this. Honestly? I don't want to go the at home route because for starters it's not easy. And the idea of tackling something so big is, well, scary. (See paragraph 1 and my phobia of the unknown.)

Another option is private schooling of some sort but the cost is prohibitive at this point in time.

Any feedback on this goal or any of 'em, for that matter, would be really appreciated.


interested or committed?

6:55 PM Posted by Roo

Mel wrote an article that got me thinking. Am I just interested in my goals or actually committed to them? Does my motivation waiver when faced with challenges or do I stay strong? I won't recap everything she wrote because she wrote it better than I could (and hello - I won't steal content!) but I'll wait while you go read it, k?

Click here to read Mel's post.
(Hey, don't skip clicking. I'll wait.)


Did you read it? Okay, good.

You see, I was gung-ho do everything by the book, don't you DARE think you can tempt me with that piece of cheesecake when I lost almost 60 pounds in 2003. I was within 10 pounds of goal weight and I got pregnant. I took that as my license to eat for two and even though I've lost weight and gained and lost and gained (and you get the picture) since that time I've never really, truly re-committed.

Ummm yeah, I WANT to lose weight. I WANT to be healthier. But I have still WANTED to drink Diet Coke all day or WANTED to have dessert on a regular basis instead of an occasional splurge. I have not disciplined myself the way I did 8 years ago (ohmygosh I feel old).

The real question here is what do I want more? Dessert and Diet Coke? Or to not feel so run down and out of control and, frankly, depressed?

What I want more is the determination of that girl from 8 years ago. The girl who said "Screw you! Nothing tastes as good as skinny feels." Because you know what? She was soooo right.

Roo & Bev
Left to right: Me and my friend Bev, Fall 2005. A little over one year post baby. I wasn't back to my pre-baby weight but I was in a good place mentally and physically. I want that back.

power of one: january project #1

3:49 PM Posted by Roo

Instead of a monthly project for January, the Sisterhood has decided to mix things up and make our projects weekly. I'm behind as they've already posted our week 2 assignment but I am really trying to keep up so I'll post mine as I can. Better late than never, right? Right.

This project was to write a letter to your future self. So I am going to attempt to write a letter to me in 2012 talking about 2011 and how I succeeded, was challenged, etc. I didn't participate last year because, frankly, I was overwhelmed. I wish I had because maybe it would've kept me more focused on the overall picture. Oh well, live and learn.

Dear Roo,

It's January 2012 and I gotta say 2011 flew by. But don't the years always seem to fly by now that you're a grown-up with kids of your own?

You've managed to stay married for 10 years (holy smokes!) and you've got two beautiful kids that you adore.

You were worried there at the beginning of the year how you would fare with your re-dedication to Weight Watchers and being healthy but you did great, woman! You kicked 2011 in the ass and told it that there's no way you'd let it be as crappy as 2010. You are
so close to your goal weight. I have no idea why it took you so long to get your head back in the game but we are so glad you did.

Learning to put yourself first has been so hard. You're a giver and while we love that about you it makes it much harder for you to do what you need to do for yourself. You finally started exercising again and that back problem? Yep. You finally got that fixed. You can exercise again without pain. It took long enough but you're there. What a relief!

I'm really proud of you. You have made tremendous strides over the last year. Let's keep it up!

Future Roo

the power of one: check-in #2

2:09 PM Posted by Roo

Power of One Challenge

Challenge Starting Weight: 198.1
Change This Week: +1.5
Change for The Power of One Challenge: +0.7
Total Pounds Gone since 9-8-2010: -4.8

Up 1.5. You know, I REALLY don't like writing these posts when I have to report a gain. It sucks. Lots. But it's MY FAULT. Grrrr. I've given myself a pep talk and I promise not to be bitter because really there's no reason to be bitter when you know you've had one too many pieces of cheesecake.

quick confessions

7:04 PM Posted by Roo

True Confessions

Once upon a time, a girl named Roo went to Disney World. She ate dessert every night (mmmmm...cheesecake...), had very little water and not nearly enough sleep. She lacked motivation for eating well in general for no real reason. She arrived home to find that there were no "real" groceries in the house. And instead of going to the grocery store she ended up working all day. I think my girl Roo needs to get her act together. The end.

the power of one: check-in #1

8:41 AM Posted by Roo

Power of One Challenge

Challenge Starting Weight: 198.1
Change This Week: -0.8
Change for The Power of One Challenge: -0.8
Total Pounds Gone since 9-8-2010: -6.3

Down 0.8 this week which is good because I didn't really re-focus until this past weekend. I'm worried about the next weigh-in only because I'm traveling. And eating right while traveling is so flippin hard. But the upside is I get to finally meet IRL - Kirsten, Brooke and Christie!!!! YAY!!!!! I'll be chillin with Brooke's hubby on Sunday cheering them on at the Disney Marathon. So proud of those girls and cannot wait to hug them!

kindle love

3:00 AM Posted by Roo

I gotta admit, peeps, my favorite Christmas gift is one I bought myself...


I never want to go back to reading paper books. This device is da-bomb-diggity. For realz. And Mel sent me to a great site that shares both free and bargain Kindle books! I am in bookworm heaven!

be still my heart

3:00 AM Posted by Roo


december's project

3:00 AM Posted by Roo

Last month's project at the Sisterhood was to make the holiday season better for others. Truly one of my favorite things about the Christmas season is the giving. Don't get me wrong, I triple puffy heart receiving presents but I love, love, love giving. Even if I never see the recipient's face, knowing that I was able to give something to help them or make them smile makes my own heart smile and I love that feeling. I hope I can remember everything to highlight but I didn't write it down so I'm totally going by memory here and anyone that knows me well knows I suffer from "mommy brain". That being said...

In an effort to teach my children that they are really blessed we went shopping and each one picked a toy for another child his/her age. We then donated the toys to a Toys for Tots drive at my six year old's school.

Running through Burger King for a large diet coke one morning (I know, it's a bad habit), the person in front of me paid for my drink. I, in turn, paid for the person behind me. The cashier said this had been going on all morning long and hadn't stopped. Each person continued to pay for the person behind them.

Each time we passed a bell ringer for the Salvation Army my three year old asked for money. And of course I gave it to her. She did that more times than I can count.

My Christmas gift to Melissa's son Bridger was a donation to his fundraiser for clean water. And did you know he actually exceeded his goal of $5,000??? What an amazing little boy.

I feel like there's something I'm forgetting and I very well might be. The point is that blessing others ends up blessing you. I don't know about you, but I plan to continue paying it forward in 2011.

i'm in, i'm in...

6:53 PM Posted by Roo

{BIG SIGH} What. A. Week. As if 2010 wasn't grumpy enough with me it definitely went out with a bang. I did let the last few weeks derail me more than I should but I am better now. My scale has been creeping upwards but no more! I am in for the Power of One challenge over at the Sisterhood and it's all about me and my needs. I'm going to be selfish. Completely, totally selfish.

Power of One Challenge

My stats for the new challenge (as of Wednesday the 29th, anyway):
Challenge Starting Weight: 198.1
Change This Week: +2.3 (that's a lot of cookies and stress eating, yo)
Total Pounds Gone since 9-8-2010: 5.5

My healthy living goals for this challenge:
  • To continue working towards not allowing circumstances to derail me. I'm getting better, I think, but it's definitely a work in progress.
  • Continue to attend Weight Watchers meetings weekly (I skipped the last few weeks). I like the meetings not so much for accountability (that's what I have all you wonderful peeps for) but for the information, sharing of tips and ideas, etc.
  • Water. I used to be so good at this. It definitely needs to become a priority again.
  • Walking. I'm going to start walking again. I won't even attempt running with the state my back is in; however, I will either walk outside when it's nice, pop in a Leslie Sansone walking DVD or hit the treadmill. I must. (Although I will be kinda sad when the Daily Mile # over on the right doesn't read 69 miles anymore...that was for Bari and Bekki *grin*).

And there it is. I'm a little late to the game this week seeing as it's almost 10 PM on Saturday night but I will fill up my water bottle, put it in the fridge and get my booty in gear.

G'night all!