Monday, April 25, 2011

Easter was very different for us this year!

Easter Was Very Different This Year!
This year we decided we were going to have a healthy Easter.  We only got our kids a small amount of chocolate. We fixed healthy choices for our meal.  We had  ham, sweet potatoes, wheat noodle macaroni and cheese (low fat cheese), salad, and sugar free pudding desert....It was great.  After the meal the guys watched the Sabres game.  My cousin, Barb, and the girls and I went to Sprague Brook Park.  We hiked through the woods, watched the girls play in the creek and swung on the swings with the girls.  We had a ball.  When we came home we went over to the school and Barb and I played tennis, while the guys played hockey. We did this till 9 at night!  We had such a wonderful time enjoying the beautiful day that God gave us.  It sure was different then how we used to gorge ourselves  and lay around all day!  So glad we did what we did!

Why did I eat my kids Easter candy??? WHY????

Why Did I Eat My Kids Easter Candy?
From the time I was very little Easter was always a special time at our house.  It was not just the excitement of  the Celebration of Jesus' Resurrection, .that was special enough, but it was the chocolate.   My parents did not buy Easter candy...we made Easter candy.  We made Easter candy for lots and lots of people.  As it got close to Easter dad would come home with this BIG box.  I can see him walking in the door with that awesome smile on his face.  He would call me over, open up the box, and tell me to smell.  It was the most amazing smell...pure Merkins Chocolate.  He would buy two huge 20 pound blocks of chocolate. Everyone  knew Easter was coming once that happened. They would wait for just the right day.  The temperature had to be perfect...chilly buy not tooo cold. Then the fun would begin. When we were little we had to stay in the living room and watch the adults work. We would peak into the kitchen and watch.  We knew better then to go into the kitchen...this was serious business.

As we got older, we got to take part in the Easter chocolate making business. Dad would take that huge block of chocolate and start to cut it into little pieces...I would catch his eye and he would give me a piece, just a taste...boy was it good! Once it was cut it would go into the double boilers. That is when the house filled with that awesome chocolate factory smells.  They had lots of metal molds which were already cleaned, dried and prepared for the day. Each one would be filled half full of chocolate.  They would turn them and twist them until the chocolate covered the inside of the mold.  Out to the back shed on the marble top they would go to cool..  As they were cooling mom would prepare my favorite part of the chocolate...the base.  She would pore the chocolate onto the cookie sheet nice and thick. They would then take the molds and place the bottoms into the base.  Then they would cool.  It seemed to take forever (it was usually less then ten minutes) for it to set.  We loved this part because we got to taste the leftover pieces.  Just like when you do cut outs, there was chocolate around the molds that could not me used again. It was for us to eat!  It was the most amazing chocolate you have ever tasted....Merkins chocolate.  The best pure chocolate you could get at the time.  Mom would put it on a plate and hand it to us kids. We would take one piece and let it slowly melt in our mouth.  It was the best part of making chocolate! They would then tap the molds and declare they were ready!  They would open the molds and out would come the most beautiful chocolates you have ever seen.  There were the traditional bunnies, which they would then put eyes on and trim around...but there were also elephants, chickens, and my favorite...the teddy bear.  Mom would store them in the back cupboard.  I can still see the whole cupboard filled with chocolate...It was amazing to think that my parents made them!

Dad was the best Easter bunny.  He would hide our baskets in such hard spots for the older kids and perfect spots for us.  He would give us clues that would keep us guessing for hours. He loved Easter!  Once we would find it all of his clues made perfect sense.  I would climb up on his lap and look over all the goodies in my basket.  We used to get gifts too. Until one year while mom and dad were out Christine and I snuck into  mom and dads closet and found our Easter surprises. We were riding the bikes that they had gotten us all over the kitchen as mom and dad came home! Boy was mom mad!  That was the end of our big Easter gifts.

As our kids grew up we tried to mimic the Easter making process.  I had a few molds, and lots of flats and would make them.  It was never the same.  The plastic bag of chocolate disks would never compare to the block of chocolate.  Eventually, I started buying chocolate for my kids.  It had to be good chocolate...Niagara chocolate. This was not quite as good as Merkins, but it was the next best thing.  I used to love to order Brandon the dinosaur egg with the baby dinosaurs inside it!  I got Becca the kitty and Rachael the ballerina slippers.  Eventually it turned into chocolate tools and cars for Brandon and chocolate CD's, skates, and cell phones for the girls...but always the smiley face circles.... To me they tasted like the "Real chocolate" base we used to have as kids.

   This year I only got the kids one piece of Niagara chocolate...and clothes, gifts...  plus the smiley face circles.I ordered them from school and put them in the office and did not think about them...until the week before Easter.  I had not been tempted by the chocolate at all.  Until Dave went to Wal-Mart and got chocolate eggs for the Easter bunny to give out (Dave is the Easter bunny if you have not guessed!)  When I opened up the bags to put into his bunny basket I got a waif of Chocolate.  This was not as good...but it took me back to those childhood days!  I did not want those eggs the "Easter Bunny" was giving out, I wanted the smiley face circles in the office!

   Dave was gone doing shows most of the week.  He took Rachael with him most days to help. This left me home alone most of the week.  I did well until Friday. Rachael called to tell me that her and her daddy were going to a movie. I was tired of being home alone and I was disappointed.  I wanted to spend time with them too.  I wanted to do something fun!  I wanted something special!  My mind immediately went to the chocolate in the closet. I would only have one piece...
As I opened up the bag I knew I should not be doing this....but I continued!  As I put the chocolate into my mouth I was drawn back to those days of old.  I had to have another and another...until I ate half of the one pound bag. I was scared someone would find out. Then I knew what I had to do.  I had to eat the rest...or they would know(my family).  I  also convinced myself that  if I ate the rest I would get so sick of chocolate.  I would make sure.that this would not happen again for  a long time...for ever.  I continued to eat my kids Easter candy.  I had to force the last two down but I ate the whole package.  Now, I did not feel good... I felt guilty.  I really have not had chocolate since last August.  How could I have done that? Here I was leading a diet class and I had failed.   I was meeting the girls at the gym the next day.  What was I going to tell them?

 As I met the girls at the gym I looked them in the eye and told them that I blew it.  I did not want them to make excuses for me and tell me "that is ok we all make mistakes!"  I wanted them to be mad at me.  I wanted them to yell at me. They did not and  they were not mad...but I was mad at myself.. As I stepped on the scale I had gained over a pound.  I was going up for the first time in a long time. I deserved it! I gained the pound I had eaten.  I had worked very hard to get where I was.  If I had just taken one or two pieces that would have been fine.  That is not what I did.  I gorged... eating so quickly that I was not even enjoying it.  The night before Easter as Dave and I were preparing the kid's baskets...they were missing the smiley faces...because of me.  I realize I don't need to gorge myself to bring me back to my childhood memories. They are all in my heart and I can take them out whenever I want, without hurting myself!  I will have to work very hard to get off the pound..but I learned a valuable lesson through it!!!

Friday, April 15, 2011

I got out my summer clothes and cried.....

I Got Out My Summer Clothes and Cried
The top two are my 3x and the bottom one is 20.

....and to think these are only 20s  I was wearing up to a 3X or 26!!!

this is me in size 16 and shirt is a large!

I did not think these would fit...just grabbed them to show in picture as my next goal...They fit!  they are size 14!!!! My first pair of size 14 pants!!!!!YEAH!!!!!
This morning Dave wanted to wear shorts, so I went to the closet to get out our summer clothes.  I did not think it would be a difficult thing...but it was.  As I looked in the plastic tote of summer clothes so many memories came flooding back to me.  I pulled out a black and silver shirt and remembered when I went to visit mom in it.  I walked in and she was talking on the phone.  She stopped and said, "Oh wow, you should see what Kathleen is wearing today...she looks so pretty!"  I pulled out my top that I always wore over my swim  suit.  I remember how I would go over to Karen's house and swim my laps as mom was laying in bed sick. I needed that release. I remembered how Marcy came with me and cheered me on. Then I pulled out the shirt from when I had gone to see her for a visit, and I just could not leave her alone.  I ran to Rite aid and picked up this t-shirt.  Then there was the shirt that I got matching ones with my sissy when she was up to spend time with mom. Then I pulled out the blue one that I wore when we did our singspiration in moms room that last Saturday.  I remember how the whole family was gathered around her bed the day before she died .I remember how mom looked from face to face and had a smile for each one of us. Then I pulled out the one that I said goodbye to my mom in for the last time...

I could not stop the tears as they came down dropping on each one of those close that held such precious memories. I can not believe it has been seven months....seven months that flew by quicker then I could blink.  I remember snuggling up to mom in the middle of the night. I hated leaving her alone at night when she was struggling to breath.  So many times I would just ask her if I could snuggle in with her.  I would tell her that I was too tired to drive home. Both of us knew what was going on....we just needed to be together.  I remember holding her  and saying, "What am I going to do without you mom....You are my best friend...I need you!"  She would look at me and said,  "You will make it honey....and I will always be there cheering you on..."  I would have loved to walk in her door today and show her what Dave and I have done.  She would have been so proud of us.  I can picture the smile on her face as she would see how much weight we have lost. We are changed people.
Yes we have lost weight, but more then that, we have been on a journey to transformation.  We have been transformed inwardly as well as outwardly.  God is doing something awesome in my family.  I thank God that mom was there for the first stages of our journey. I knew how proud she was of us. She loved us all so much. As I held each of those clothes for the last time I realized we have been on a journey.  We have beat all odds and changed.  The best part of that plastic stacky of clothes is not one of them fit us....I can not believe we ever fit into 46-48 waist and 3XL for me!  It is something I never want to go back to.  Even the smallest pair of shorts were huge on Dave.  None of them fit either of us.  My clothes were way to big for me.  I never have to put on any of those clothes again.

 I have my memories tucked away in my heart. I know that mom has left a  legacy that each one of her kids will carry on.  We have a love for God, and a love for each other that is growing stronger every day.  Every two weeks all the brothers and sisters have a conference call.....we talk for at least 1 hour to 1 1/2 hours. Some of it is business, but most of it is just getting to know one another.  It is a wonderful time of sharing that we never had before. Mom and dad would be soo proud.  We also have spent weekends at mom's house fixing it up to sell. Those days were priceless.  We are getting closer.  That is what would have made mom proud.  Each of us have our special memories with mom and dad that have made us who we are today... I am just thankful that we had such Godly parents! Thankful that each of us have changed for the better...and that we each have memories that we can always pull out and look at whenever we want....and unlike the clothes...those memories will always be a perfect fit!

Weigh in Day...We are still loosing....God is Good!

Dave Starting weight-- 380
Dave's starting weight with fawn- 330
Dave's weight last week 262
Dave's weight today- 260
Weight loss for the week- 2 pound loss
Total weight loss with Fawn- 70 pounds
Total weight loss- 120 pounds!!!

Kathleen's Starting weight-- 270
Kathleen's starting weight with fawn-260
Kathleen's weight last week 206
Kathleen's weight today-204
Weight loss for the week- 2 pounds
Total weight loss with Fawn- 56 pounds
Total weight loss-66 pounds!!!  YEAH!!!! (I want 70!!!)

Weight loss of Dave and Kathleen for this week- 4 pound loss!
Total weight loss of Dave and Kathleen- 186 pounds- In 13 months
Total weight loss with fawn- 126 pounds! (in 7 months!)
Postitives for the week!
*Ladies Bible study is going awesome...we have lost over 20 pounds in our group in 4 weeks
*Dave has officially lost 120 pounds!!! WOW!  So proud of him!
*I am gettting closer to 70 pounds...seems to be taking forever...but I have been steadily loosing 1-3 pounds each week. 
*Brandon is down to 264! He has lost 40 pounds
*I have had more energy, now that I am feeling better and I am spring cleaning!

Negitives for the week
*Dave and I have both been sick this month.  Dave has it now...please pray that he will get better quickly.
*I am starting to get a little flabby skin...hope the gym will get rid of extra skin..I dont want surgery!

I am sorry that I have not been as faithful writting in here. I seems like we have been so busy...time is flying by. Yesturday my mom has been gone for 7 months...does not seem possible.  I did not think I could live without her and time keeps marching on so fast...not fair!  There is still a hole in my heart...but I feel good knowing that she would he so proud of me...not just in the weight loss, but in the Bible study at my house too. That means alot to me.  I love having people in my house...and I love  that we are growing together as a group.  What a blessing it has been to me.  It is something that God layed on my heart after she died, and I am so thankful that I have such wonderful friends to work with!