12 Weeks Post Surgery

I hit a milestone this week by getting under 200 pounds!  I do not recall that I have weighed under that mark since high school so I am pretty excited about it

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I hit a milestone this week by getting under 200 pounds!  I do not recall that I have weighed under that mark since high school so I am pretty excited about it and hope that I don’t go up again over that marker.


Wednesday, December 6th, 2017

Weight: 202 lbs

Food:

  • Tea (8 oz)
  • Protein shake (8 oz)
  • Cheeseburger (no bun)
  • Chicken sandwich (no bun)
  • Tea (12 oz)
  • String cheese
  • Milk (8 oz)

I wore some more new clothes today.  I got a couple of tunics I ordered from Amazon last night and paired one with a pair of new leggings.  It is a little shorter than I would prefer, but it covers what I think is necessary.

I really should know better by now but I was feeling quite hungry at lunch time so I got both a a cheeseburger and a chicken sandwich from McDonald’s (I know, bad planning, really) then I ate most of both of them minus the buns (at least I made that good choice).  I felt fine at first but then I had that “need to burp” feeling that turned into spitting up a bit.  I know, that is gross, but I am trying to record facts here.  Anyway, after removing a little bit of the food from my esophagus, I felt much better!

Blood sugar: 108 (6 am)

Fluid intake: (36 oz)


Thursday, December 7th, 2017

Weight: 201.4 lbs

Food:

  • Drinkable yogurt (10 oz)
  • Tea (8 oz)
  • Protein shake (8 oz)
  • Milk (8 oz)
  • Vegetarian chili
  • Cheese

Huh, I did not really plan to have all liquids today before dinnertime, it just kind of happened that way.

I had totally planned to have the other half of my salmon fillet for dinner tonight but apparently when I wrapped it back up on Tuesday, I failed to put it back in the fridge.  It has been cold in my apartment but not cold enough for me to be willing to eat that fish!  While pawing through my freezer for other options, I found the Morningstar Farms crumbles that I bought years ago then didn’t know what to do with so I threw them into my Instant Pot with some beans, tomatoes, garlic & onion, and seasonings and called it chili.  I like beef chili and I am kind of disappointed in how this turned out.  My mom warned me about the texture but I found that a bigger problem is the taste.  Of course it isn’t really beef so I wouldn’t expect it to be just like that but I have always enjoyed veggie burgers and I am not sure I really care for the crumbles, it’s like they are too sweet or something.  Anyway, it isn’t so bad that I won’t keep eating it, at least for a couple of meals, but I also won’t buy the crumbles again.

Blood sugar: 115 (6 am)

Blood pressure (at the dentist’s office): 122/72 (4 pm)

Fluid intake: 34 oz


Friday, December 8th, 2017

Weight: 201 lbs

  • Food:
  • Yogurt
  • Tea (12 oz)
  • Vegetarian chili
  • Water (8 oz)
  • Sunflower seeds
  • Applesauce
  • Gyro meat with onions & sauce
  • Milk (8 oz)
  • Lemonade (6 oz)

The jeans I have been wearing on Casual Friday have gotten increasingly baggy.  While looking through some boxes, I found the size 16 jeans (NOT 16W – there is a difference!) that I bought when I lost some weight like ten years ago.  They were a little tight then but today I was able to zip them up with no problem, so that is good!

Blood sugar: 103 (6 am)

Fluid intake: 34 oz


Saturday, December 9th, 2017

Weight: 199.6 lbs

Food:

  • Milk (8 oz)
  • Protein bar
  • Juice (8 oz)
  • Chicken chili
  • Cheese
  • Water (8 oz)
  • Orange chicken
  • Spring roll
  • Fried rice
  • Tea (16 oz)

This is the first time since high school I have been under 200 lbs! I hope it lasts and I don’t go up again.

Like always, the quantity of fried rice I ate was less than I would normally have (or, than I used to have, I guess, this is normal-ish for me now) compared to the meat I was eating it with.  Also, I thought ahead enough to cut my egg roll in half because even though it was delicious, I regretted eating the whole thing last time I got one.  I am learning!

Blood sugar: 108 (8 am)

Fluid intake: 40 oz


Sunday, December 10th, 2017

Weight: 200.4 lbs

I did not record what I ate at all today (yesterday, really, I am writing this on Monday).  I did weigh in above 200 but I decided not to get worked up about it, there are always some variations and at least I did not go up too high


Monday, December 11th, 2017

Weight: 199.6 lbs

Food:

  • Juice (8 oz)
  • Yogurt
  • Tea (12 oz)
  • Vegetarian chili
  • Oyster crackers
  • Milk (8 oz)
  • Orange chicken
  • Fried rice
  • Milk (8 oz)

I knew my weight would not go back up!  (Okay, maybe it is too early to get excited but I’m okay with that – I am excited about this milestone.)

Fluid intake: 36 oz


Tuesday, December 12th, 2017

Weight: 199.6 lbs12 weeks

Food:

  • Pudding
  • Tea (12 oz)
  • Chicken chili
  • Cheese
  • Oyster crackers
  • Sunflower seeds
  • Applesauce
  • Milk (8 oz)
  • Orange chicken
  • Fried rice
  • Milk (8 oz)

Some of the things I am eating are kind of liquid and so should be able to count (pudding, chili, applesauce, etc) but I don’t know how to do the math to get the real fluid amounts so I am going to let it go.

Huh, I do not look happy in the photos I am taking these days.  That is not because I am unhappy, it is probably just because it is quite cold in my apartment and I am not very dressed.  I am actually pretty happy to be ending this week having lost almost thirty pounds (from my surgery date – closer to forty since I started tracking).

Blood sugar: 116 (6 am)

11 Weeks Post Surgery

I don’t know why I was listing my medications daily when they are the same every day

I really go back and forth a lot on the idea of buying new clothes.  I expect to lose more weight, so I do not want to invest in a new wardrobe yet but I also want to look good now – it is vain of me, I know, but I want to show off my new body (to an extent).  I have more or less decided to buy new clothes only if I can get cheap ones for now, even if that means shopping places that I normally do not.  I have been leaning toward leggings over pants although tights are also okay with dresses & skirts.  I bought three pairs of boots last month – black, gray, and burgundy, so most stuff I can find goes with at least one of them.  I have not found a lot of tunic-style shirts available at cheap stores so I bought myself a couple from Amazon during their Black Friday / Cyber Monday sales. I selected no rush shipping (yay for digital credits!) so I have not received the garments yet but I have high(ish) hopes.  I refuse to wear leggings with regular shirts because I have been very disapproving of such a style in the past (anything that exposes camel-toe is inappropriate in my opinion no matter the shape of the person wearing it – during exercise or lounging at home are obvious exceptions).  Anyway, my spreadsheet of expenses is showing a significant uptick in my clothing expenditures and a slight downward trend in food purchases.  I suppose the latter might be more significant if I had not done shopping for Thanksgiving dinner myself but I am far from being over budget as a whole (even with my post-Thanksgiving shopping binge).


Wednesday, November 29th, 2017

Weight: 204 lbs

Food:

  • Chocolate
  • Tea
  • Chili
  • Saltines
  • Milk
  • Macaroni & cheese
  • Juice

I had to get up extra early today to teach a class at 6 am at work.  Teaching involves me talking for hours on end so I did not eat breakfast like I normally do although I did drink a lot of tea (I took my electric kettle into the Training Room).  There were some fancy chocolates at work and I had one, it was caramel inside and delicious.  Not very nutritionally sound but at least I limited myself to a single one!

Medications:

  • 500 mg Metformin x 1 ½
  • 28 mg Iron x 1

Thursday, November 30th, 2017

Weight: 204 lbs

Food:

  • Applesauce
  • Hot dog
  • Lemonade (sugar free)
  • Macaroni & cheese
  • Milk
  • Turkey
  • Gravy

I forgot my morning pills again today – damn, I need to figure out a better system, apparently!  Anyway, my weight has flattened out over the last several days which is not ideal but is, of course, better than increasing, which is always a danger around a holiday.  Of course, I would like to get under the milestone of 200 pounds but I guess I will just have to keep working for it.

I went to CostCo during my lunch break today so I picked up a hot dog to eat – I figured that it is high in protein.  It comes with a beverage but fortunately, they have sugar free non-carbonated lemonade as an option.  It turns out that eating a hot dog which has condiments is difficult when you (by which I mean me) are trying not to eat much bun, but it is achievable.  I only ended up eating half of it though, it is a pretty big hot dog.

I ate the last of the leftover turkey & gravy from Thanksgiving today.  

Medications:

  • 500 mg Metformin x 1
  • 28 mg Iron x 1

Friday, December 1st, 2017

Weight: 203.2 lbs

Food:

  • Egg McMuffin (no meat)
  • Tea (12 oz)
  • Tea (8 oz)
  • Chili
  • Oyster crackers
  • Tea (12 oz)
  • French onion soup (8ish oz liquid)
  • Water (6 oz)
  • Lemonade (16 oz)

I am not sure but I think my weight finally going down a bit today is due to the slight relief I had last night from the constipation I have been having recently.  I don’t know for sure but I am reasonably confident that it was due to dehydration.  I have been drinking, of course, but probably not enough, especially this dry time of year.  I don’t know if I will actually keep track consistently but I shall try to monitor my fluid intake better.

I actually ate all of my Egg McMuffin this morning except for some of the muffin part.  I also got a hash brown because I love those but I thought better of it before consumption and gave it to the helpful IT guy who aided in setting up my students for IPC test-taking this morning.  If I had eaten its delicious carb-filled greasiness, I would not have been able to eat all of the egg and cheese on my breakfast sandwich which contains the protein that I actually need to focus on in my diet.  I know that the sandwiches with meat on them give me more protein but I just don’t care for most breakfast meats.

For now, I have decided to totally give up on my home blood pressure machine.  I will figure out how to calibrate it at some point but so far it seems pointless to monitor my blood pressure using an inaccurate measuring system.

In other news, my blood test results showed that my cholesterol is high again (I stopped taking my medication for it) but my doctor seems to think that it is not a problem.  We will see where the weight loss takes me, numbers-wise and make decisions after some more time.

Medications:

  • 500 mg Metformin x 1 ½
  • 28 mg Iron x 1

Blood Sugar: 106 (5 am)

Fluid intake: 52 oz


Saturday, December 2nd, 2017

Weight: 204 lbs

Food:

  • Eggs
  • String Cheese
  • Juice (8 oz)
  • Milk (8 oz)
  • Tomato-y soup with chicken (8 oz)
  • Hummus
  • Pita bread
  • Tea (16 oz)

Okay, I pretty much immediately failed to drink enough after saying I would work on it but I guess it is a process.

After talking to my father (not my doctor exactly, but a doctor and one who knows my family history pretty well) I will be starting my cholesterol medication back up again although I plan to break the pills in half and see how that goes first.

Medications:

  • 500 mg Metformin x 1 ½
  • 28 mg Iron x 1

Fluid intake: 40 oz



Sunday, December 3rd, 2017

Weight: 203.6 lbs

Food:

  • Eggs
  • Juice (8 oz)
  • Bean salad
  • Milk (8 oz)
  • Lemonade (16 oz)
  • Hummus
  • Pita bread
  • Turkey lunchmeat
  • Cheese

When I first weighed myself this morning, I was over 205 pounds!  I was disappointed until I realized that I was wearing fairly heavy pajamas due to the weather and I tried again in just my underwear.

I don’t know why I was listing my medications daily when they are the same every day – sure, I am trying to decrease my Metformin and things like Iron are theoretically temporary but when I made changes, I can note them.  Well, I guess I do know; initially, I thought I would be varying things more but I am not doing that much.  So, starting today, I am not going to list my medications unless they differ from my standard, which I am declaring here.  I also took some Tylenol today for my girl cramps.

Medications (AM):

  • Levothyroxine, 112 mcg
  • Sertraline, 100 mg
  • Metformin, 250 mg
  • Drospirenon-EE 3-0.02 mg [taken in a 28 day cycle with dummy pills for 4 days]
  • Vitamin D, 2000 IU
  • Vitamin B12, 500 mcg

Medications (PM):

  • Metformin, 500 mg
  • Atorvastatin, 20 mg
  • Iron Glycinate, 28 mg
  • Cetirizine, 10 mg
  • Multivitamin

NOTE: Current multivitamin (One A Day Women’s) includes:

  • Vitamin A, 2500 IU
  • Vitamin C, 60 mg
  • Vitamin D, 400 IU
  • Vitamin E, 30 IU
  • Vitamin K, 25 mcg
  • Thiamin (B1), 1.5 mg
  • Riboflavin (B2), 1.7 mg
  • Niacin, 10 mg
  • Vitamin B6, 2 mg
  • Folic Acid, 400 mg
  • Vitamin B12, 6 mcg
  • Biotin, 30 mcg
  • Pantothenic Acid, 5 mg
  • Calcium (elemental), 450 mg
  • Iton, 18 mg
  • Magnesium, 50mg
  • Zinc, 15 mg
  • Selenium, 20 mcg
  • Copper, 2 mg
  • Manganese, 2mg
  • Chromium, 120 mcg

Fluid intake: 32 oz


Monday, December 4th, 2017

Weight: 202.8 lbs

Food:

  • Tea (12 oz)
  • Hummus
  • Pita bread
  • Juice (8 oz)
  • Turkey soup (8 oz)
  • Diced peaches
  • Sweet potato
  • Sour cream
  • Ranch dressing
  • Milk (8 oz)

Keeping track of my fluid intake does not really do any good unless I make an effort to increase it, of course.

Fluid intake: 36 oz


Tuesday, December 5th, 2017

Weight: 202.4 lbs11 weeks

Food:

  • Juice (8 oz)
  • Hummus
  • Pita bread
  • Tea (8 oz)
  • Chili
  • Oyster crackers
  • Tea (8 oz)
  • Applesauce
  • Salmon
  • Milk (8 oz)

I have shin splints today, which is weird because I did not exercise yesterday.  I may still go to the gym today but if I do it will be for something that does not exacerbate the pain.

As always, I am wary of the weight loss today.  Still, I will try to be positive and assume it is a win I can use to encourage further progress.  I plan to go to Trader Joe’s today after work because I need apple cider vinegar.  For some reason, even though it is winter, I have fruit flies in my apartment so I need to make traps to get rid of them.  Anyway, I plan to buy some tofu while I am there because I have not made that in some time and I like it.  Also, I have clearly been doing a terrible job of reaching my protein goals, so it should help with that.

I bought some sandwich thins and a tomato to have with the veggie burger which I planned on eating tonight but when I got home, it turned out that I did not have any in my freezer!  Fortunately, I had bought a piece of salmon for tomorrow (and the next day since I don’t need much) so I was able to sautée that in some garlic olive oil for dinner.  It was pretty good even without anything accompanying it.  Now I feel healthy!

Exercise: 20 min. stationary bike

Fluid: 32 oz

 

Crafting up a storm

Not every step has a picture but some steps have many – I took too many pictures.  Some of this stuff can be done in a slightly different order but this is how I accomplished it, using batch processing.

bat bagpumpkin bag
When I was shopping for Halloween costume material, I decided on a whim to make trick or treat bags for my niece and nephew.  A quick google search resulted in a plethora of options from which I could choose.  After reading through a few of them, I decided to try the tutorial by Sweet Bee Buzzings for a simple one yard tote.  I bought some Halloween-themed fabric (jack-o-lanterns for the toddler to be dressed as one and bats for the little boy who requested a bat costume when I was unsure I could make a kangaroo) and went to work.  The bags were cheap and easy to make and turned out reasonably well.  What I did not consider is the relative size of the bags to the children.  Both of them would find the strap length ridiculous and the little one would definitely drag hers on the ground; she might even be able to fit in it if she tried – she is pretty small!  The kangaroo costume I made also ended up being too big (and itchy somehow even though I lined it with cotton) so I did not do too well this Halloween.  Still – one bag got used (cleverly knotted up to fix the long strap problem and I fell in love with the idea of the one yard tote bag.  (A note on the pictures – the bags are the same size, I just folded the pumpkin one in a funny manner.)


I decided to make a bag with this pattern for my great aunt and found that when I cut a chunk off of the straps, that portion could be used to make a cute little pocket (the tutorial creator suggests making a coin purse).  Also, for this bag, I got some hook and loop fastener (generic Velcro) and sewed it along the top.  I think it turned out pretty well although apparently, I neglected to take a photo of it.  After that success, I thought it would be a good craft to make in bulk.  I have six employees plus two co-workers in the department and it seems like an easy thing to make as a nice little holiday gift, especially if I bake some cookies to go inside (well, not directly inside).  It remains to be seen whether I will feel up to baking cookies that I cannot eat but I did buy a star shaped cookie cutter in case I decide to go through with it.

Also, to be honest, I needed a project after I finished the quilt for my cousin-nephew.  This is easy enough to do while watching TV so I used my Brother sewing machine which is less loud (although also less good when it comes to stitch quality).  I bought a yard each of nine fabrics (one extra, just in case – I am sure I will find a recipient).  The fabric is all from Jo-Ann’s Quilter’s Showcase collection, which is pretty cheap – especially when on sale.  The fabric quality varies some.  It is not actually a very nice quilting cotton although some is soft enough, other prints feel stiff even after being washed, which is fine for a bag but less desirable for a garment or a quilt.

I also used the quantity I am making as an excuse to buy new iron-on labels.  This is partially because I know I am running low on the ones I bought the past and partially because I cannot find those anyway.  I ordered a set from It’s Mine Labels, a company with which I have been pleased before.  I like that they make iron-on labels because it is way less of a pain in the proverbial butt to do that than to sew them on by hand and bury the threads.  On the other hand, iron-ons do not work well for knitwear so I guess I have to keep getting both kinds.  In the past, I have ordered labels with an icon (yarn or thread or something) but that takes up space I need for my full name so I went with text only this time.  Yes – the font is Comic Sans, I know it is overused but I am okay with it.  The labels arrived after only a few days and I was about to iron one onto my aunt’s bag when I noticed the typo.

bad label

My first assumption (stereotypical female that I am) was that I had made an error when ordering the labels.  After finding my confirmation and verifying that I had not, I contacted the company to report the problem.  They fixed it and got me new labels with the right spelling in another couple of days.  I was pretty impressed with both their speed and their customer service.  I should have thrown away the typo set but a part of me thought “hey, maybe I will be able to use these someday”.  It was not a bright idea.  I guess I could theoretically cut them all in half and discard the misspelling but that seems like a lot of work and I don’t know what I would do with labels with just my name – iron them into my underwear like I am going to sleepaway camp?  Of course, inevitably, I accidentally ironed the bad labels into my first few bags and had to work to get them off so I could replace them with the good ones.  I should not admit this but I still have not thrown out the bad labels (with the exception of the ones I inadvertently used).  I am such a hoarder – it is a real problem with an apartment the size of mine.


I am now going to document my bag creation process step-by-step.  Like I said, I used the tutorial from Sweet Bee Buzzings, which is great (all credit goes to the blogger) but I made a few changes – some for better some for worse.  I used a lot of zigzag stitching as a sort of simple decorative stitch.  Also, I totally eliminated hand sewing the hole partially due to laziness and partially due to a probably misguided desire for stability.  The bags are theoretically reversible, so the pocket can be on the inside or outside although the zigzag along the bottom doesn’t quite line up with the seam on the non-pocket side.  Also, I did not pay attention to directionality as well as I should have when cutting the fabric, so a couple of them have upside-down insides.  The pockets made with directional fabric are more up and down, like they are supposed to hold a phone than the other kind.  The pictures were taken of various bags in process so it is a mish-mash of colors.  Anyway, now that I have talked (typed) excessively, here is my step-by-step process.  Not every step has a picture but some steps have many – I took too many pictures.  Some of this stuff can be done in a slightly different order but this is how I accomplished it, using batch processing.  FYI, my seam allowances are all about 1/2″ or whatever the distance is from my needle to the edge of my presser foot.


Buy fabric (one yard for each bag) and thread if you need to (I decided to use white for everything and only selected fabrics that contained white for matching purposes).  This is, of course, the most fun step because it involves going to the fabric store but I guess you could shop in your stash instead.

buy fabric

Wash fabric.  I don’t use detergent when pre-washing my fabric unless I am just throwing it in with my laundry, which I do often but this time, I ran a load of just cotton fabric on hot with no detergent.

wash fabric

Iron fabric.  I never iron  my clothes – they are consistently wrinkled and terrible looking but I iron a lot when I sew because it is important to have things lie flat.

Fold fabric. Fold each yard of fabric in half lengthwise then in half widthwise (or the in the other order – it doesn’t really matter).  Make sure the selvage edges line up although the corners and cut edges may not, depending on how well the person at the fabric store cut in a straight line.

fold fabric

Cut fabric.  This is where sub-steps start to come in because there are multiple cuts to be made.

Trim bag pieces, removing all frayed and/or uneven edges by cutting a straight line perpendicular to the adjacent edge.  You can leave selvages (unless they are frayed) and folds for now.

trim edges

Cut a straight line 5 inches away from the selvages.

Unfold handles.  There will still be 2 layers because there are 2 handles.

Cut pocket. Cut 6″ from one end of the handles.

cut pocket

Trim folds perpendicular to cut edges.

trim fold

Rearrange fabric if necessary.  Because of the way you folded the fabric, two of the panels will be upside down if you have directional fabric.  If the design has 180° rotational symmetry (or a reasonable facsimile of it) you do not have to do this step.

pieces

Cut corners.  These will be the BOTTOM corners after you have aligned the fabric as needed above.  You can mark 2″ squares and cut them with scissors but I like to use my rotary cutter to get up close to 2″ then just finish them off by snipping with scissors.

cut corners

Handles

Fold in half lengthwise.

Iron to make a crease.

fold in half

Open, then fold each side in to meet the crease. It is better to be a little shy of the center crease than to go over it.  Theoretically, you would match it up exactly but I never manage to do that.

Iron new creases.

fold each side

Fold along first crease.

Iron handle.

iron handle

Sew handle along edges with a zigzag stitch.

sew handle

Sew handle along fold with a zigzag stitch.

sew handle 2

Repeat for second handle piece.

Pocket

Pin pocket pieces with right sides together.

Sew along 3 sides only.  The side left open may be any one EXCEPT the top.  The bottom or either side is acceptable.  Note the direction of the fabric when determining which edge will be the top.

Trim corners of pocket.

trim pocket

Turn pocket and poke out corners as much as possible.

Fold unsewn edges inside of pocket.

Iron pocket.

iron pocket

Pin pocket to one panel of the bag.  If the fabric is directional, make sure it faces the right way.  Center the pocket side to side.  The height of the pocket does not matter so much, I made all of mine the same but that is just because I was being a one lady sweatshop.

Sew around 3 sides of the pocket using a zigzag stitch centered at the edge of the fabric.  Do NOT sew across the top – that would close the pocket off and make it pointless!

Iron in a label (if you have such things) – at least that is what I did at this point.  I figured inside the pocket was a reasonable place to put my name so that it doesn’t stand out too much.

Pin bag panels with right sides together and (obviously) corner cutouts matching up.  Do this 2 times (for the outside and for the lining).

Outside of bag

NOTE: I put the pocket on the outside. For an inner pocket, just use the non-pocketed panels for this step.

Sew along 2 sides which have a single cut corner each.

Sew part of the way along the bottom side, leave a gap (3 – 6 inches, depending on how hard you want to work to turn the finished product inside out.

Do NOT sew along the intact side – that will be the top of the bag.

Lining of bag

Sew along 3 sides which have cut corners.

Do NOT sew along the intact side – that will be the top of the bag.

Both Outside & Lining

Iron seams open.  I used a little ironing board designed for sleeves.  That is just as well because I don’t know if I have ever actually ironed a sleeve.

Open up the bag and pin the corners together with the right sides together, matching the seams.

Sew the corners (2 per side – 4 total).

Iron the corner seams down.  They can’t be pressed flat without cutting so I like to press them toward the bottom on the outside of the bag and toward the sides on the lining of the bag.

Turn the outside (or the lining if you are doing an inner pocket) right side out.

Pin a handle to the outside, equidistant from the pocket, which is convenient centering tool.  I like to do it one handle width away, mostly because it is a consistent relative measurement for which I have a tool on hand – the handle for the other side!  (Okay, I used a different handle to be able to see better but that is not really necessary.

Verify, when pinning the second end of the handle that it is not twisted.

Turn the outside over and make sure it is lying flat and folded at the seams.

Pin the second handle to the back of the bag, matching it up with the front handle and making sure it is not twisted.

Sew the handles to the bag in four places, using a seam allowance slightly smaller than you are using everywhere else on the bag (mine was about 3/8″).  Be careful not to sew the tops together – there are four individual seams here!

Place the outside of the bag INSIDE the lining so that the right sides are facing each other and the handles are fully contained between the layers.

Pin the outside to the lining all around the top of the bag, making sure that no parts of the handles are caught except in the four locations where they were sewn on.

Sew around the top of the bag, again making sure that nothing is being sewn together that should not be (not that I made that mistake at some point and learned the hard way about this by having to use a seam ripper to free one handle).

Turn bag right side out by reaching through the hole left in the outside of the bag and pulling out what seems like the innards.  I think it is easiest to grab the handles and pull them out first, the rest of the bag just sort of follows then.

Tuck the lining of the bag into the outside.

Iron the new seam along the top so it is nice and flat.

Sew a zigzag stitch around the top edge.

Pin the bottom so that the gap is closed and lines up with the seam on the inside.

Sew a zigzag stitch along the bottom seams.  This is why I put the gap on the outside, so I can line up the stitching with the gap – I never get it looking quite right on the other side.

Done!

10 Weeks Post Surgery (Happy Thanksgiving!)

I was my usual control freak self though and managed to do pretty well with the food – both making and eating it.

So, Thanksgiving – a holiday all about food and here I am with limited eating ability!  I have admitted before that I was quite nervous about the whole thing, not least of which because I do the cooking.  I was my usual control freak self though and managed to do pretty well with the food – both making and eating it.  I tried creamed spinach for the first time (well, I have eaten it before but never made it) and it was delicious.  I can’t say I am surprised.  Spinach is tasty and the white sauce / parmesan cheese that went with it was delightfully full of yummy fat.  I de-stemmed the spinach, which I think really helped with the texture but was a pain in the proverbial butt.  I am considering making it again for Christmas but maybe going with frozen spinach instead.  On the other hand, that will probably not be quite as good . . . decisions are hard!

Anyway, people tend to gain weight this time of year and although I don’t really expect that to happen to me this early post-surgery, I decided to not get too worked up about some weight fluctuation right now.  I may not be eating a ton but I am eating more decadent foods than usual – I almost never have dessert.


Wednesday, November 22nd, 2017

Weight: 204.2 lbs

Food:

  • Greek omelette
  • Tofu burrito bowl with no rice
  • Tea
  • Fried rice
  • Teriyaki beef & mushroom
  • String cheese
  • Juice

I did not want my weight to keep going up but at least it is not a lot at this point.  I will just have to keep an eye on things that I eat – a difficult task on this particular week.

I may have had a few bites of various foods I was cooking this week as well as my listed meals although I don’t think any were too bad.  I forgot how delicious stuffing can be – especially when not mushy (either from being in the bird or being over-hydrated)!

Medications:

  • 500 mg Metformin x 1 ½
  • 28 mg Iron x 1

Blood Sugar: 108 (6 am)


Thursday, November 23rd, 2017 (Thanksgiving)

Weight: 204.6 lbsthanksgiving dinner

Food:

  • Milk
  • Juice
  • Banana
  • Turkey
  • Stuffing
  • Mashed potatoes
  • Gravy
  • Creamed spinach
  • Bean salad
  • Sweet potatoes
  • White wine
  • Apple pie
  • Vanilla ice cream
  • Pumpkin pie
  • Whipped cream

thanksgiving dinnerSo, I ate almost everything at Thanksgiving dinner (I forgot the cranberry sauce and chose not to waste stomach space on a white roll even though it was super fluffy and I do love that sort of thing) but only a little of each dish so I do not think that I did too badly.  I did not feel over-full at all but I did feel satisfied and not deprived.  I had only a little sliver of each pie (and a tiny bit of the accompanying whipped cream / ice cream) but despite my sweet tooth, it wasn’t too hard to stop although if I had been alone, I might have been tempted to keep eating until I was overfull of pie, so it is a good thing that Thanksgiving is a togetherness holiday 🙂

I had alcohol for the first time since my surgery, I don’t think I was supposed to but I had less than half a glass of wine and not with dinner so I think it will be okay.  The reason, as I understand it, to avoid alcohol at this point is because dehydration is so likely with it being harder to drink large volumes of water so I just tried my best to be hydrated by non-alcoholic liquids as well today.pies

I took home some leftovers and will try hard to eat turkey along with the carbs I am taking (mostly stuffing, my cousins demolished the mashed potatoes) and the delicious fattiness that is the creamed spinach.

Medications:

  • 500 mg Metformin x 1 ½
  • 28 mg Iron x 1

Friday, November 24th, 2017

Weight: 205.4 lbs

Food:

  • Turkey
  • Stuffing
  • Gravy
  • Mashed cauliflower
  • Creamed spinach
  • Mandarin
  • Pancake
  • Butter
  • Juice
  • Cheesecake
  • Strawberry sauce
  • Bean salad
  • Milk
  • [more of the same for dinner]

Well, it was not great to see my weight go up today but I can’t say that I am surprised.  It also did not stop me from eating some cheesecake (again, just a sliver plus a bit of topping) with my family in the afternoon.

I also had a pancake for breakfast although not a very big one and according to my aunt, it was made with whole wheat flour and cottage cheese so that wasn’t so bad, I guess.  At least that is what I am telling myself.

Medications:

  • 500 mg Metformin x 1 ½
  • 28 mg Iron x 1

Saturday, November 25th, 2017

Weight: 205 lbs (at the doctor’s office)

Food:

  • Banana
  • Turkey
  • Stuffing
  • Creamed spinach
  • Mashed cauliflower
  • Gravy
  • Bean salad
  • Milk
  • Chicken broth
  • Juice
  • Applesauce

I spent the night at my Grandma’s house in order to get to my 8 am doctor’s appointment more easily (it’s almost spitting distance) and did not weigh myself on her ancient dial scale before leaving.  At the doctor, I weighed in at 205 without my shoes but with my other clothes on (nothing too heavy – leggings and a tunic but still, more than usual when I weigh myself).  My blood pressure was relatively low, the systolic at least, so I am pretty convinced at this point that I should not be believing my at home monitor, which is too bad.  It is a nice one and it measured correctly early on.  Maybe I need to look into whether it can be re-calibrated.

bmi chartAccording to my visit summary, my BMI is down to 32.11 but that is because they measured my height at 5’7” and I have been rounding down to 5’6”.  Either way, it is trending down so I am making progress!

Anyway, my A1C was measured at 6.8 which is still high but way better than my last measurement in March, which was 7.9.  The lab took some blood for tests, including the stuff my surgeon ordered for my 3 month checkup, so that is out of the way, if a bit premature. I have not gotten the results back yet but I am hopeful.  While I was there, I got my prescription for birth control renewed.  I have been off of it for a few years but my last two periods since the surgery have been especially painful, so I decided to give it another shot.  I did not have any side effects or anything but I was taking so many medications that I figured I could do away with an unnecessary one at the time.  Now, the total number is fewer, so I feel more comfortable adding a pill back to my regimen.

At home, I forgot to take my evening pills,which does not bode well for adding more medication but it happens relatively rarely these days, so I won’t get too worked up about it.

Medications:

  • 500 mg Metformin x ½

Blood Pressure: 102/80 (8 am at the doctor’s office)


Sunday, November 26th, 2017

Weight: 204 lbs

Food:

  • Turkey
  • Gravy
  • Mashed cauliflower
  • Creamed spinach
  • Bean salad
  • Steak burrito
  • Refried beans
  • Tea
  • Juice

My Thanksgiving leftovers continue!  I had planned to use the turkey carcass to make stock yesterday or today but I just did not feel like it so I threw it into the freezer instead.  Maybe I will try using my Instant Pot to do it on a weekday.

Today, I forgot to take my morning pills – this pill thing is not going well for me.  I have not had so much trouble in the past, I will really have to get better at this.  I did notice some itching that I think is related to forgetting my evening pills yesterday, which included my allergy medication, I notice when I miss that one!

Medications:

  • 500 mg Metformin x 1
  • 28 mg Iron x 1

Monday, November 27th, 2017

Weight: 204 lbs

Food:

  • Yogurt
  • Steak burrito
  • Refried beans
  • Tea
  • Turkey
  • Creamed spinach
  • Gravy
  • Bean salad
  • Juice
  • Milk

I did not exercise all week while I was preparing Thanksgiving dinner although I probably should have.  Anyway, I went back to the gym today planning to do a good half hour on the machine but I only made it 20 minutes.  Eh, it’s progress, at least.

Medications:

  • 500 mg Metformin x 1 ½
  • 28 mg Iron x 1

Exercise: 20 minutes elliptical


Tuesday, November 28th, 2017

Weight: 204 lbs10 weeks post

Food:

  • Yogurt
  • Tea
  • Steak burrito
  • Refried beans
  • Salsa  
  • Hummus
  • Wheat thins
  • Milk
  • Turkey
  • Creamed spinach

I officially do not believe my blood pressure monitor anymore.  The number is just crazy compared to the measurements I have gotten at doctor’s offices recently.

I did make turkey stock today using the carcass from Thanksgiving along with some aromatics, herbs, and root vegetables.  It smelled pretty good but I did not consume more than a couple of spoonfulls (which needed salt).  I put it in the freezer for later – I think this counts as bone broth which is extra full of nutrients, so that is good!  I will probably use it in soup to nourish me and keep me warm this winter.

I have to say that I am not seeing a big difference between my photos week-to-week.  I guess maybe if I place them side by side but I look at photos like the one above and I can’t help but think to myself “nothing has changed”.  I know that it has, though.  I have lost more than 25 pounds and people comment on it all the time at work (in positive ways).  Also, a lot of my clothes, the non-stretchy ones at least, are hanging off of me now and even some of the stretchy ones have a little extra room.  Finally, I can see the difference in my face although my double chin has not really gone away yet.  Anyway, I will keep taking the pictures and probably even posting them because I like data.  Of course, quantitative data like weight is easier to compare and understand but photos of progress are important too.

Medications:

  • 500 mg Metformin x 1 ½
  • 28 mg Iron x 1

Blood Pressure: 136/97 (6 am)

9 Weeks Post Surgery

I am still working on fighting my instinct to drink something when I feel overfull, like I need to wash it down.  I have learned that with my  new stomach, it just makes the feeling worse and can even cause me to regurgitate.

I started going to the gym this week, although it was a pretty slow start at least it got me moving!  Also, I started on my Thanksgiving prep work.  I was worried that all the cooking, especially dessert stuff, would be hard for me with my food limitations but I actually did not have much trouble not eating the stuff I was preparing – even the cheesecake with strawberry sauce!


Wednesday, November 15th, 2017

Weight: 205.0 lbs

Food:

  • Applesauce
  • Tea
  • Broccoli cheese soup
  • Saltines
  • Milk
  • Steak
  • Mashed cauliflower

Okay, my blood pressure is way too high.  I wish I could blame it all on stress but I am not sure that is really valid.  I do wonder though if my meter is reading it high, since it was lower at the doctor’s office last week.  I have a psychiatrist appointment this afternoon, maybe they will take my blood pressure there and I can compare.

My psychiatrist seems to be perfectly satisfied with my blood pressure being a little high like it has been.  This is probably helped by the fact that it was a little lower when they took it there.  I wonder if there is something that is the opposite of “white coat hypertension” that makes me have higher blood pressure readings at home.  Occam’s razor would suggest that the simpler explanation (my blood pressure machine is flawed) is more likely to be true.  It is a nice one though, my father did research before buying it for me.

Anyway, the doctor also thinks that this blog is a great idea, including posting underwear photos of myself, something that took my therapist by surprise when I mentioned it to her.  It could be because he doesn’t know me as well.  I see him maybe twice a year for a check in and drug refills while I see my therapist every other week, so she is aware of my self-consciousness and body issues.  Still, I could not help but feel encouraged by his response, which helped make up for the embarrassment / judgement I felt at hers a few weeks ago.  She probably was not actually judgmental – I tend to read that sort of thing into responses when it isn’t there but I felt it, just the same.

I am working hard to convince myself that I will not regret posting in this manner; even the photographs.  Well, only the photographs, really.  I have no cause to regret listing foods I have eaten.  I do have some relatives who, if they managed to find this blog, might be fairly appalled at my meat intake.  I am not too worried about it though.  I need to consume protein and beef, in particular, also has iron.  I have not historically eaten a lot of meat but I have no particular moral or religious objection to it so I have upped my intake recently (percentage-wise, at least).  I guess my medications could be considered confidential but they are relevant to my journey – even seemingly unrelated ones like my antidepressant (speaking of which, I am starting a lower dose of that tomorrow).

Medications:

  • 500 mg Metformin x 1 ½
  • 28 mg Iron x 1

Blood Pressure: 127/97 (6 am)

  • 118/89 (3 pm at the doctor’s office)

Thursday, November 16th, 2017

Weight: 205.2 lbsgym 9 wks

Food:

  • Tea
  • Quinoa with pesto
  • Chocolate protein shake
  • Peanut butter
  • Milk
  • Steak
  • Mashed cauliflower

My weight went up today but just barely.  Also, I was wearing leggings on the scale, which I usually do not, so I will call this a wash.

Starting today, I am decreasing my Sertraline (anti-depressant) from 150 mg per day to 100 mg per day (1 ½ pills to 1 pill, which is easier anyway).  I will re-evaluate with my doctor in 2 months about the effects of this change – ideally there will not be any.

I went to the gym today.  This is not the first time but I don’t recall the day I went before and I realize I need to start recording it.  I did not last very long – it has been a while since I worked out, but it is a start.

Medications:

  • 500 mg Metformin x 1 ½
  • 28 mg Iron x 1

Blood Pressure: 124/92 (9 pm)

Exercise: 15 minutes elliptical


Friday, November 17th, 2017

Weight: 205.2 lbs

Food:

  • Tea
  • Melba toast
  • Cream cheese
  • Applesauce
  • String cheese
  • Yogurt
  • Tofu burrito bowl – no beans

I am filling this out a couple of days after the fact and I feel like I ate something else on Friday but I cannot be sure.

I stopped both before and after visiting my grandma to buy some ingredients for Thanksgiving dinner.  I only got a ten pound turkey (hormone free per my grandma’s preference) but that should be enough for nine people, especially since five of them are apparently leaving on Friday although I don’t know what time yet.

Medications:

  • 500 mg Metformin x 1 ½
  • 28 mg Iron x 1

Saturday, November 18th, 2017

Weight: 205.2 lbs

Food:

  • Yogurt
  • Juice
  • Milk
  • Pear
  • Fried rice
  • Egg roll
  • Teriyaki beef & mushrooms

I ate too much today for dinner.  The egg roll was so delicious that I just kept eating it – mistake!  After a while it did settle though, so I guess it was not such a terrible lapse.

I am still working on fighting my instinct to drink something when I feel overfull, like I need to wash it down.  I have learned that with my  new stomach, it just makes the feeling worse and can even cause me to regurgitate.  I had a few instances of spitting up a bit in my trash can at work and feeling like I had an eating disorder like bulimia even though I was not purging on purpose although I did fell significantly better afterward.

Medications:

  • 500 mg Metformin x 1 ½
  • 28 mg Iron x 1

Blood Pressure: 117/88 (12 pm)


Sunday, November 19th, 2017

Weight: 204.2 lbs

Food:

  • Greek omelette
  • Hash browns
  • String cheese
  • Juice
  • Teriyaki beef & mushroom
  • Fried rice
  • Roasted cauliflower
  • Pears

I had big plans to start cooking for Thanksgiving this afternoon but instead I realized my eggs were expired and instead of going to the store, I took a nap.  Then, when I woke up in the evening, I remembered I needed to cook something for the potluck at work tomorrow and threw some cauliflower in the oven (with lots of garlic, of course).

I did not weigh myself in the morning and the scale said 206.4 lbs when I tried it mid-afternoon.  By the time I actually went to bed though, it was 204.2, so I decided to go with that because it better suits the trend.  I did not make my final decision about that until Monday morning, though.  (This feels a little bit like cheating on my statistics but they would not be accurate anyway using the midday weight

I did make a schedule for my Thanksgiving cooking though, I hope I can stick to it.

  • Turkey – prep Wednesday night, start cooking Thursday morning
  • Gravy – make on Thursday after the turkey comes out of the oven
  • Stuffing – make Wednesday night, stuff the turkey and put in dish, bake Thursday
  • Creamed spinach – make Thursday while the turkey is cooking
  • Bean salad – make Monday night, add green onions on Thursday
  • Mashed potatoes – make Tuesday night, reheat in oven on Thursday
  • Pumpkin pie – make Monday night
  • Apple pie – make Wednesday night
  • Cheesecake & strawberry sauce – make Tuesday night

My grandma is making squash, I think with apples and my aunt is making cranberry sauce and possibly dinner rolls (or we will buy them).

I found my other bottle of test strips for my glucometer but since it was right after I ate a cup of diced pears, I decided to wait until Monday to actually use any of them.

Medications:

  • 500 mg Metformin x 1 ½
  • 28 mg Iron x 1

Monday, November 20th, 2017

Weight: 203.2 lbspotluck

Food:

  • Tea
  • Yogurt
  • Turkey
  • Various Thanksgiving-y sides
  • Dessert – custard or something in a cookie cup
  • Applesauce
  • Tea
  • Teryiaki beef & mushroom
  • Fried rice

I am surprised that my weight went down, especially as much as it did.  I hope I am being over cautious in assuming that it is a fluke of some sort and the number will jump back up tomorrow.

Today, we had a potluck at work.  I had a small amount of a few things and do not feel overfull although I do really want a nap, that could be more related to my poor sleeping last night.  Most of my choices were pretty good although I did eat a cookie cup with a delicious filling. Fortunately (or possibly unfortunately given my sweet tooth) I have not had any problems with dumping syndrome since my surgery.

As a small personal victory – despite there being a lot of leftover baked goods, I (sort of) satisfied my sweet tooth by eating applesauce instead of grabbing another treat this afternoon.  I do like applesauce, it is just not quite as delicious as apple pie!

In sort-of unrelated news, I wore my new burgundy dress and awesome burgundy boots to work today (with black leggings, of course, the dress is pretty short for my comfort plus it is almost wintertime) and got a lot of compliments, not just on how well I match but also on how much weight I am losing. That is encouraging, especially when I am eating a tray with tiny portions of food while surrounded by people gorging on a Thanksgiving feast.

I know that I should go to the gym after work today but I have cooking to do!  Also, I need to go by my grandma’s house in order to visit with my family who just arrived and pick up some herbs from her garden.

Medications:

  • 500 mg Metformin x 1 ½
  • 28 mg Iron x 1

Blood Pressure: 132/96 (6 am)

Blood Sugar: 87 (6 am)


Tuesday, November 21st, 2017

Weight: 203.8 lbs9 weeks post

Food:

  • Melba toast
  • Cream cheese
  • Chocolate protein shake
  • Tofu burrito bowl with no rice
  • Fried rice
  • Teriyaki beef & mushroom
  • Juice

I am not surprised that my weight went back up, I feel like it fell too fast the last couple of days.  I wasn’t complaining or anything, of course, but I cannot be too upset about the small jump back up today.

I successfully made pumpkin pie and bean salad last night, so I am on schedule for Thanksgiving, so far.  Also, I have sage and thyme in my car waiting to go into the stuffing.  I poured a tiny amount of the pumpkin pie filling into a glass dish so that I can eat it without crust later.

I am starting to not believe my blood pressure machine.  It is always lower at the doctor’s office.  I have an appointment on Saturday and if they tell me it is high there, I will worry but not until that point.

I made mashed potatoes and cheesecake tonight although only the former turned out as planned.  I have not made cheesecake in over a decade and I have never used a pre-made graham cracker crust in a pie tin.  I guess I overfilled it so it puffed up and the top cracked.  Well, hopefully it will taste the same.  I also made a strawberry sauce to go with it.  I did not have the right size pot clean and I did not want to stand over it so I cut up the frozen strawberries (slightly) and threw them in my Instant Pot with sugar, lime zest, and lime juice.  The tiny taste I had seemed pretty good.  It was quite tart but with enough sweetness to balance it.

Medications:

  • 500 mg Metformin x 1 ½
  • 28 mg Iron x 1

Blood Pressure: 136/98 (6 am)

Blood Sugar: 107 (6 am)

 

8 Weeks Post Surgery

My hands will never be dainty by any means but perhaps I could get to the point where I can actually wear jewelry that is available without being special ordered.  That would be pretty exciting.

I don’t know that this was a very exciting week, really.  Thanksgiving inches closer and I am concerned about it a bit (it is a holiday focused on eating) but since I do the cooking, I will have pretty reasonable control over the options.  I will likely stick with classics although I may mix things up a little bit – I guess I will make that decision when I have to; namely on pre-Thanksgiving shopping day.


Wednesday, November 8th 2017

Weight: 208.0 lbs

Food:

  • Diced peaches
  • Yogurt
  • Burrito bowl – no rice
  • Meatballs
  • Marinara sauce
  • Brown rice & quinoa pasta
  • Parmesan cheese
  • Milk
  • juice

I really need to clean my room enough to find my blood sugar test strips.  I am not sure that the way I live really counts as adulting at this point!

Medications:

  • 500 mg Metformin x 1 ½
  • 28 mg Iron x 1

 

  • Blood Pressure: 125/91 (9 pm)

Thursday, November 9th 2017

Weight: 206.8 lbs

Food:

  • Yogurt
  • Tea
  • Rice
  • Cooked tomato
  • Beef kafta
  • Applesauce
  • Roast turkey
  • Muenster cheese
  • Melba toast
  • Cream cheese
  • Milk

After leaving my apartment this morning, I realized that I accidentally took my evening pills instead.  When I take my morning pills after work, I guess it will all come out the same (at least I hope so).

I am surprised that my weight went down again so soon, my plateaus have been longer than that recently.  I suspect that it will go up a tiny bit tomorrow but I guess I will just have to wait and see.

I took off my ring today and I am not sure I will be putting it back on again.  I have been wearing it since I got it for my eighteenth birthday and I think it is a size 10 or 10 ½ (yes, I have big man-hands) and while it has been loose and tight over the years in turns, I have never been worried about it actually falling off before.  Now, however, it feels like I might lose it if I shake my hands hard enough so I put it in the little bowl next to my bed and will probably not wear it again.  I like the ring but I am not sure it is really worth it to look into re-sizing.  Maybe when my fingers settle on a new size, I can look into getting another ring; likely there will be more options when I go down a few sizes (which I hope to do).  My hands will never be dainty by any means but perhaps I could get to the point where I can actually wear jewelry that is available without being special ordered.  That would be pretty exciting.

Speaking of jewelry, I can take my bangles off now too.  They aren’t in any danger of falling off like my ring was but they also don’t require soap or oil or painful tugging to come off past my hands anymore, so that is nice.  Perhaps someday, I could buy cheap bangles at some shop in India – an impossibility in my adult life so far due to my size.  I don’t know how likely that is, but it is nice to think about.

Medications:

  • 500 mg Metformin x 1 ½
  • 28 mg Iron x 1

 

  • Blood Pressure: 125/90 (6 am)

Friday, November 10th 2017

Weight: 206.8 lbs

Food:

  • Applesauce
  • Rice
  • Beef kafta
  • Tea
  • Juice
  • Vegetable soup
  • Crackers
  • Milk

Huh, my weight did not go back up, so that is good, I guess.  My stomach does not feel great this morning though, so that is a negative.  Still, progress is being made 🙂

Medications:

  • 500 mg Metformin x 1 ½
  • 28 mg Iron x 1

Blood Pressure: 125/90 (6 am)


Saturday, November 11th 2017

Weight: 205.8 lbsdress shopping 8 weeks

Food:

  • Eggs
  • Milk
  • Cheese
  • Juice
  • Chicken shawarma
  • Feta cheese
  • Roast beef
  • String cheese

I ate a lot of cheese today, apparently.

I am surprised that my weight went down again – surprised in a good way, of course, but still surprised.

I did a little bit of shopping today.  I got some cute calf boots that seem to fit even though they are not wide width.  I don’t think my feet will get less wide with weight loss although some people’s do.  My mother has wide feet and, even more interestingly, my grandmother does too.  Even though my grandma’s feet are as tiny as her body (she wears a size six shoe and weighs under a hundred pounds) wide shoes fit her feet better.

Some women of my size need “extended calf” boots, which Payless does have for wide widths but I have found that those can be too big for me although until recently, I sometimes had a little trouble zipping up regular calf boots.  Anyway, I was going to a different Payless because my local one did not have my size but then I got distracted by a KMart.  I actually though those didn’t exist anymore.  I went in and found boots in burgundy which, once I made sure they fit, I just had to have.  I decided to try on a dress to match (even though I do own other burgundy clothes) and was thrilled to find out that I could buy something in the regular section.

Yes, this dress is stretchy, which really helps and yes it is a size XL but still – I did NOT have to go to the plus size section to find it, which is a victory all on its own!  Also, I am not bursting out of it or anything, so I think it is fine.  I look forward to wearing it with black leggings and my awesome new boots.

I also bought a two-pack of inexpensive bras.  My current bras are fitting kind of loosely.  I guess the minimizing ones still do okay but they have a lot of coverage and don’t really work for anything with a low-ish neckline.  My bras have been gapping some in the cup which is pretty noticeable when I keep my phone there and it doesn’t stay put.  My phone actually fell out the bottom of my dress last week, it was awkward.  Anyway, I cannot say that these new bras are perfect or anything, but they should do the job.  Also, the size is 40DD, which is great.  DDs are not as easy to find as other sizes but they are much easier than the size I used to wear (42DDD).  With that size, I could never find a bra under twenty dollars, let alone two for a single price!

I know I should not shop much at this point since I am likely to lose more weight and need a new wardrobe again before too long but I don’t think it is a bad thing to get a few nice clothes that fit, especially when they are inexpensive.

Medications:

  • 500 mg Metformin x 1 ½
  • 28 mg Iron x 1

 

  • Blood Pressure: 127/87 (10 am)

Sunday, November 12th 2017

Weight: 205.8 lbs

Food:

  • Eggs
  • Milk
  • Juice
  • Melba toast
  • Brie cheese
  • Meatballs
  • Marinara sauce
  • Brown rice & quinoa pasta
  • Parmesan cheese

I forgot my morning pills today (oops).  I guess that is what happens when I neglect to fill my weekly pill caddy.  I also neglected to take my blood pressure and did not do anything toward finding my blood sugar test strips.  I did spend the day in pajamas (well, what I slept in, which is sort of pajamas) so I am not sure it was a banner day for adulting but I survived.

I shared my blog address with a couple of people today.  Both are folks I trust not to be judgmental but it still felt weird to invite them to look at pictures of me in my underwear.  I am definitely not ready to share the address on Facebook or anything, I probably never will be although I have determined not to be embarrassed  if anybody I know comes across it, like my brother and sister-in-law apparently did.  The photos may show skin but it’s no less than a bathing suit and not lascivious in any way so I have decided I am comfortable sharing, if only just in case somebody considering getting a sleeve gastrectomy happens to come across it and finds the information helpful.

Medications:

  • 500 mg Metformin x 1
  • 28 mg Iron x 1

Monday, November 13th 2017

Weight: 205.8 lbs

Food:

  • Diced peaches
  • Tea
  • Chicken shawarma
  • Feta cheese
  • Peanut butter
  • Milk
  • Apple cider
  • Steak
  • Mashed cauliflower

The scale fluctuated again this morning – between 205.8 and 205.0.  I don’t want to get too excited but I might be down again already.  All I can do is try to eat well today and see what happens tomorrow, I guess.  

I do need to get more yogurt for breakfast but I am kind of tired of it.  Maybe I should work on protein shakes again.

In addition to an electric kettle for my office, I got some nice herbal tea (sangria zinger) that does not need to be sweetened so I am hopeful that will help me stay hydrated in the winter – assuming that I have time to drink it before it gets cold!

Medications:

  • 500 mg Metformin x 1 ½
  • 28 mg Iron x 1

Tuesday, November 14th 2017

Weight: 205.0 lbs8 weeks post surgery

Food:

  • Tea
  • Yogurt
  • Applesauce
  • Quinoa & pesto
  • String cheese
  • Tea
  • Pizza
  • Milk

I forgot to take pictures again this morning – Tuesday is an awkward day to remember such things.  The longer it has been since my surgery the less the specific day seems to matter; maybe I will switch to Sundays or something for my weekly photos in the future.  Either way, I will try to remember to take them when I get home today.

I had a real craving for pizza so when I was out, I decided to get some.  I bought a “Hot & Ready” pizza from Little Caesar’s and ate a slice on the long trip home (it took me an hour to go five miles on the freeway for some reason).  I don’t know why I thought I could have the pizza, I guess I just got cocky, having tolerated other food well and feeling good overall – I was wrong!  The pizza upset my stomach and I even threw up a little.  Upon finally reaching home, I gave the rest of the pizza to my neighbor and decided to consider it a lesson learned.  After my stomach calmed down, I had some milk for protein and soothing.  I’m not sure about 1% milk though.  I definitely like ½% best but only Kroger seems to have it so I will need to plan accordingly.

I remembered to take photos in the evening although I wasn’t feeling great post-pizza and I think the pictures might reflect that a little.  I did not remember to take my blood pressure (again).

Medications:

  • 500 mg Metformin x 1 ½
  • 28 mg Iron x 1

A Biased Approach

I find the most fun part of quilting to be the planning stage.  My mother refers to it as “projecting” (like project, the noun, plus -ing, not projecting like to display something to speak loudly when on stage).

Anyway, I like figuring out how a quilt can go together; what measurements to make each piece in order to create a finished product that will fit with the batting that I probably already bought.  I do way more math than is necessary but that is part of the fun – apparently I miss doing basic geometry.  It’s kind of ridiculous that despite all this preparation and calculation, I inevitably end up with a quilt with mismatched corners.  The reason for that, however, is not a lack of planning, but a lack of care when it comes to execution.

I use a mat and rotary cutter to slice up the fabric and while I do my best to hold everything steady and cut neatly, I cannot honestly say that my strips or squares (or whatever) always come out right.  Also, I tend to sew fast and while watching TV so I do not always keep my seams even and consistent.  Still, I consider my finished products to generally be close enough for jazz (so to speak) and even my mother who makes excellent quilts slowly says it is better to be done than perfect, so I’ll take it.

Anyway, my cousin had a baby (well, his wife did) in April and I decided to make him a quilt.  I like the concept of the Attic Windows design and decided to go with that, putting characters in the windows by fussy-cutting novelty fabrics.  In retrospect, I should have narrowed the sashing because the windows don’t look quite right although I am still pleased with the result overall.  The character content should be bigger compared to the more plain elements.  I went with 2 1/2″ strips (and 2 7/8″ squares cut diagonally) for all of the border-type fabrics and 4 1/2″ squares for the mostly licensed character fabrics.  This allowed me a pretty standard 1/4″ seam allowance all around.

singer tableOne of my problems with keeping a nice 1/4″ seam is the fact that I used my sub-par sewing machine.  I inherited an extremely heavy sewing machine from my mother (when she upgraded decades ago, she is still alive and sewing) which is more furniture than crafting supply, really.  It is a Sears Kenmore from the early seventies and while it is, of course, electric, it is not computerized.  The bobbin winder does not work well anymore (it actually works fine but then the machine doesn’t want to sew anymore after it is used – something about the clutch, I am told) but that is really its only problem other than its bulk.  In the past year, however, I purchased a secondhand (but very lightly used) Brother CS6000i.  This machine has a drop in bobbin, is super easy to thread, and is very light.  On the other hand, the stitch quality is not as good and the markings for seam allowance are harder to follow.  Anyway, my nice (if old) machine was folded up in its cabinet and had stuff on top of it, so I decided to use the other machine.  I don’t know that I regret it, exactly, but it may not have been the best idea.brother machine

Yes, based on these photographs, it is obvious that my apartment is a giant mess but every photo I take shows that, so it is hardly news.  Anyway, I pieced the quilt over the course of a few months, stopping periodically to buy more fabric then having to wait until I went to my grandmother’s house on Friday in order to wash said fabric before I could cut it.  Late in the summer, I bought a panel that had postage stamps for eight Texas cities; something I would normally never purchase but the baby this is meant for lives in Texas so I decided to go for it.  Anyway, I finally finished piecing the quilt, made a sandwich with the batting and flannel back (I like flannel backing especially for baby quilts, it is soft and fuzzy) and then got sad that I actually had to quilt it.

A baby quilt is not very big, this one was around 42″ x 58″, narrow enough to use regular width fabric on the back, but I am not good at quilting; worse even than I am at piecing.  I think my Brother may have come with a walking foot but I don’t know where it is (or whether I actually even own it) so I just went with the one foot I keep installed and picked a decorative stitch.  It did not go very well.  The problem is that I do not keep even movement through the machine.  If I let the feed dogs do all the work, the stitches are way too close together because of the material thickness but if I pull it through, the stitches are way too far apart.  A decorative stitch really shows off the variation far more than a straight stitch; a lesson I learned too late (although it is obvious in retrospect).  I might have mitigated this affect by doing a free-motion type of thing where the stitching meandered around the quilt but I decided to go in straight lines.  Additionally, I picked a different decorative stitch to go length-wise than I did width-wise so the whole thing is a little bit of a clusterfuck.

Finally, I was done quilting (although I had to stop partway through to buy more thread, unfortunately a poor match for the original which I got from my mother but that is a whole separate issue).  I went to JoAnn to purchase bias tape with which to bind the quilt.  I had decided on orange to pick up the accent in the most prevalent border fabric but did not like the shade choices available to me.  Also, I decided that I should go with 100% cotton instead of the blend available for purchase so I decided to make my own bias tape.  I consulted the internet regarding how much fabric to buy (I decided on one yard) and instructions on how to proceed.  Most tutorials instructed me to use a bias tape maker.  A smarter person would have purchased a basic one – they are not too expensive but no, I thought “I don’t need that, I have an iron” or something equally cocky and just bought the fabric.

bias tape backI cut 2 1/2″ strips (for 5/8″ double fold bias tape) at a 45° angle from my fabric.  It is hard to say for sure, since I stuffed the extra into my scrap bin instead of measuring it, but I think I used about half of the yard I bought.  I sewed the strips together using a 1/4″ seam (approximately), which I then trimmed and pressed open.  I folded the now long strip in half and pressed that seam.bias tape first fold  It took [what felt like] forever to press all six yards or so of fabric which I now had connected.  I tried to make sure that the seams stayed flat when ironing to prevent lumps but I cannot be really sure about that due to laziness and boredom.  The now 1 1/4″ wide strip piled up on the floor next to my ironing board as I worked. 20171105_092501.jpg The next step, of course, was to flip the right side down and bring in the edges so that they would be hidden on the final product.  This is where a bias tape maker would have been very helpful.  I had to go inch by inch and line up the edges with the center line without going over it at all.  This was not hard but was time-consuming.  Eventually, I finished that and folded the bias tape in half along the original line, ironing it again to make the crease obvious and sharp.

pin bias tapeWith my bias tape made, it was time to start binding my quilt.  I pinned it all along one edge, lining up the edge of the tape with the edge of the (trimmed) quilt sandwich.  If I had thought this through better, I would have left a section unsewn at the beginning so that I could overlap it with a folded edge but I rarely think things through so I just started sewing and had to improvise later. before corner I sewed along the first fold, about 5/8″ from the edge and stopped 5/8″ away from the corner.  I am actually glad that I did not prepare the corners in advance because I did not do the best job of pinning the bias tape in place and had a little ripple that I was able to get rid of when I worked the corner, starting over with pinning along the next edge.  I backstitched where I stopped and cut the threads, pulling my work off of the machine to fold up the corner. after corner Basically, I created a right angle and folded the excess fabric over the line of stitching I had already made then I pinned the rest of the side in place and started sewing 5/8″ from the edge, being careful not to sew over that folded bit.  I treated the other corners in the same way and trimmed the excess bias tape when I got to the end, leaving a couple of inches to overlap and fold the edge under before sewing.

flip to backfold cornerneat back cornerThen, I did something stupid.  Well, not right then, first I folded the corners over neatly and pressed them into place, that looked pretty good but then I decided that I wanted to machine stitch the binding in place in order to hold it more firmly so that it can stand up to machine washing.  Plus, I remembered that I am lazy and hand stitching invisibly is hard.  basteOf course, I saved no time because I decided to baste the binding in place before sewing it in order to make sure I captured the back edge – I totally failed to achieve this goal.  I tacked it in place which did take less time than careful invisible stitches would have but then, I went to sew the binding on, planning to “stitch in the ditch” on the front and just sew the edge of the bias tape in the back.  In several places, I missed the tape on the back altogether and, being lazy / sloppy as I am, I sometimes missed the ditch in the front.  For the former, I had to rip out the non-helpful line of stitching and re-make it in a way that would actually hold everything together. finished corner front This took long enough that it made me realize I had saved no time whatsoever.  Next time, I will hand stitch the binding as I have been taught to do.  Eventually, I did finish and found my work to be satisfactory if not ideal. finished back I briefly considered doing something like a zig-zag stitch all along the place where the quilt and binding meet in an attempt to hid my sins (so to speak) but that seemed excessive, plus it would really show how poorly my orange thread matches my orange fabric, so I decided to let it go.  Finally, I decided I was done.  I ironed on my tag (I know I have more but they have gone missing somewhere) and decided to take a photo and pack it up.

pillowcase frontIn the meantime (after I finished the top but before I got around to buying and washing the fabric for the bias tape) I decided to make a matching pillowcase.  My reasons for this were twofold: I had extra blocks that did not make it into the quilt and the Texas fabric had come with a large central panel that I was never going to use for anything else. pillowcase back I actually still have blocks left over but they are the ones that I consider sub-par and do not mind not using.  Anyway, I measured a pillowcase I already had and started putting the thing together.  The pillowcase is not ideal – it is sort of a mish-mash of ideas held together with what scraps of fabric I had that matched the quilt.  Still, I think it turned out (mostly) okay if not great and I sent it along with the quilt when I mailed it to Texas last week.

So, as a conclusion, I think I will make my own bias tape again but first I will invest in an inexpensive bias tape maker to do the folding for me!  Also, I will make my next quilt on my Sears Kenmore and see how much that improves my ability to keep to a particular seam allowance.

finished quilt

7 Weeks Post Surgery

I am prematurely excited about the milestone of getting under 200 lbs  I guess the plateaus are to be expected and as time goes on, they will get longer and longer.

The plateaus I keep hitting concern me a little bit.  I was worried that they meant I was doing something wrong.  My psychologist seemed to think it was not good that my weight loss had already slowed.  Fortunately, I went to my 6 week post-op checkup on Wednesday and the doctor says I am on track!  I have lost about 20 lbs so far and apparently I can expect to lose around ten more by my three month checkup in December – I am prematurely excited about the milestone of getting under 200 lbs  I guess the plateaus are to be expected and as time goes on, they will get longer and longer.


Wednesday, November 1st. 2017

Weight 209.8 lbs (at home) / 210.8 (at the doctor)

Food:

  • Cashews
  • ½ % milk
  • Steak burrito
  • Refried beans
  • ½% milk
  • Meatballs
  • Marinara sauce
  • Quinoa & brown rice spaghetti
  • Parmesan cheese
  • Grape juice

I had to get up extra early for work today – I needed to arrive here by six o’clock (one hour early) in order to start IPC training.  On the plus side, it will not be such a big deal when I leave for my six week follow-up at the doctor’s office, which I need to do about one hour early, so that works out.  I did forget to take my blood pressure and blood sugar this morning along with my medications (½ pill Metformin, 1 pill Synthroid, & 1 ½ pills Sertraline).  It should be okay though as long as I don’t forget again tomorrow.

I had my six week follow-up today.  The doctor says I can resume normal activity, which means I should exercise and therefore have to join a gym again.  I know that will be good for me but I am always so tired after work!  Also, both he and the nutritionist told me that small plateaus are normal, something that my psychologist seemed worried about.  Apparently, over time the plateaus will last longer and longer, which does make sense.  He said I can expect to see about ten more pounds of weight loss by my three month appointment.

At my appointment, I weighed in at 210.8 lbs, likely because I was wearing clothes.  Although I took off my boots and sweater, the skirt, tank top, and leggings I wore must have accounted for the extra pound.  Anyway, by their calculation, I have lost about 20% of my excess weight.  The amount expected for this point in time is 10% – 18%, so I am [barely] ahead of schedule.  Amazingly, my blood pressure was lower at the doctor’s office than it has been at home; 117/80.

Because of this, I decided not to worry too much about the high blood pressure I measured at home in the evening.  The high blood sugar is because I had finished eating less than an hour before, I am sure.

Medications:

  • 500 mg Metformin x 1
  • 28 mg Iron x 1

 

  • Blood Pressure: 125/100 (7 pm)
  • Blood Sugar: 190 (7 pm)

Thursday, November 2nd, 2017

Weight: 209.8 lbs

Food:

  • ½% milk
  • Beef bologna
  • Melba toast
  • Cream cheese
  • Sugar free fruit punch
  • String cheese
  • Applesauce
  • Meatballs
  • Marinara sauce
  • Quinoa & brown rice spaghetti

I feel like my weight wants to go down again – I saw it flicker between 209.8 and 209.0 this morning when I stepped onto the scale.

Medications:

  • 500 mg Metformin x 1 ½
  • 28 mg Iron x 1

 

  • Blood Pressure: 122/91 (5 am)
  • Blood Sugar: 131 (5 am)

Friday, November 3rd 2017

Weight: 209.0 lbs

Food:

  • Egg
  • Cheese
  • Turkey sausage
  • Orange juice
  • Yogurt
  • Burrito bowl – no rice
  • Apple cider

I got a burrito bowl from Moe’s for dinner although I ate something like a third of it.  I got no rice, some extra beans, tofu, grilled vegetables, salsa, and cheese on it.  So, it wasn’t the healthiest thing but I am pretty sure that it was fine, having a decent amount of protein and limited carbs.

Medications:

  • 500 mg Metformin x 1 ½
  • 28 mg Iron x 1

 

  • Blood Pressure: 125/94 (6 am)
  • Blood Sugar: 148 (6 am)

Saturday, November 4th 2017

Weight: 209.0 lbs

Food:

  • ½% milk
  • Peanut butter
  • Strawberry jam
  • Roast turkey
  • Muenster cheese
  • Tea
  • Hummus
  • Pita
  • Beef kafta
  • Rice

I ate a minimum amount of the rice that came with my dinner, which is too bad because it was pretty good, I think they used butter.  Also, I ate hummus with a high dip to pita ratio, which isn’t a bad thing but can be a little bit messy.

I used up the bottle I had of test strips for my glucometer.  I know that I have another bottle with the same control number (or whatever) somewhere but I have not remembered where that is yet.  I don’t have a good excuse for not measuring my blood pressure today.

Medications:

  • 500 mg Metformin x 1 ½
  • 28 mg Iron x 1

 


Sunday, November 5th 2017

Weight: 209.0 lbs

Food:

  • yogurt
  • Beef kafta
  • Rice
  • Tomato (cooked)
  • Burrito bowl – no rice

 

I forgot my evening pills today and neglected my blood pressure again (oops).  On the other hand, I finished a baby quilt, so I am still counting this as a productive(ish) day.

Medications:

  • 500 mg Metformin x ½

Monday, November 6th 2017

Weight: 209.0 lbs

Food:

  • Yogurt
  • Peanut butter
  • Diced peaches
  • Applesauce
  • Meatballs
  • Marinara sauce
  • Quinoa & brown rice spaghetti
  • Burrito bowl – no rice
  • Milk
  • Apple cider

I am thinking about starting to eat oatmeal for breakfast some mornings.  I am getting tired of the yogurt that isn’t really yogurt (Kroger Carbmaster cultured dairy blend).  There is a variety of flavors but still, it gets boring.  I would eat eggs for breakfast more but I am not willing to wake up early enough to make them most mornings.

Medications:

  • 500 mg Metformin x 1 ½
  • 28 mg Iron x 1

Tuesday, November 7th 2017

Weight: 208.0 lbs7 weeks post surgery

Food:

  • Applesauce
  • Hummus
  • Wheat thins
  • Tiny snickers bar
  • Burrito bowl – no rice
  • Milk
  • Melba toast
  • Cream cheese

There is too much leftover Halloween candy around!  I am mostly controlling myself, at least the portions are small.

I forgot to take a photo in the morning but I don’t think I changed too much throughout the day.

Medications:

  • 500 mg Metformin x 1 ½
  • 28 mg Iron x 1

 

  • Blood Pressure: 122/90 (6 am)

6 Weeks Post Surgery

The dress did not fit like it was supposed to – it bunched up under my bust instead of falling smoothly but it did make my [already shrinking / sagging] bosom look pretty good.

The six-week mark for me fell on Halloween.  I like dressing up in theory but did not plan well this year.  I had high hopes that an old dress would fit and owned a witch hat already but I neglected to look for my fishnets and so had to make do.  The dress did not fit like it was supposed to – it bunched up under my bust instead of falling smoothly but it did make my [already shrinking / sagging] bosom look pretty good.  Consequently, I got plenty of compliments!

Also this week, my brother came to visit from California.  It wasn’t just to see us although I am pretty sure that seeing us was a factor in his decision to attend this particular work-related conference.


Wednesday, October 25th. 2017

Weight 212.2 lbs

Food:

  • Vanilla protein shake
  • Hummus
  • Wheat thins
  • Applesauce
  • milk
  • & other things I forgot about

Wow, my blood pressure shot up today!  I need to add a pill (or half of one at least) to my pill caddy to take tomorrow, since it is a morning drug for me.

Medications:

  • 500 mg Metformin x 1 ½
  • 28 mg Iron x 1

 

  • Blood Pressure: 122/100 (6 am)
  • Blood Sugar: 115 (6 am)

Thursday, October 26th. 2017

Weight 212.2 lbs

Food:

Yogurt

  • Chicken tortilla soup
  • Saltines
  • Meatballs
  • Egg whites
  • Egg
  • String cheese
  • Juice
  • Milk

Today, I made 284 meatballs.  I used half lean beef and half turkey along with egg, milk, and probably too many breadcrumbs. I would say too much garlic as well, but I don’t believe that such a line exists.  Anyway, I like my meatballs tiny, which is why there were so many of them.  Based on the math I did, there are about 8 grams of protein in ten meatballs, which is a small-ish serving size.  I did kind of burn my last tray of them but it wasn’t so bad except for the smoke alarm going off when I pulled them out of the oven.  I tasted one though and it was fine, if a little blackened.

I forgot to take my pills tonight.  So, I stiffed myself on both Metformin and my allergy pill.  I hope I don’t get all itchy tomorrow.  The Metformin result will be harder to judge.  Also, I realized I forgot to add the blood pressure med to my pill caddy but my diastolic is back under 100 so I will avoid doing it for now.

Medications:

  • 500 mg Metformin x ½

 

  • Blood Pressure: 122/92 (6 pm)
  • Blood Sugar: 158 (6 pm)

Friday, October 27th. 2017

Weight 212.2 lbs

Food:

  • Roast turkey
  • Muenster cheese
  • Spaghetti squash
  • Meatballs
  • Marinara sauce
  • Parmesan cheese
  • & other things I forgot about

I took my meatballs over to my grandma’s house today because my brother is visiting and we had a family dinner with him and my uncle and cousin.  Unfortunately, his adorable children were not present but that’s okay, we were glad to see him anyway!

I spent the night at my grandma’s house but I did prepare for it – I brought my medications, oral appliance, and yogurt for breakfast on Saturday!

 

Medications:

  • 500 mg Metformin x 1 ½
  • 28 mg Iron x 1

 

  • Blood Pressure: 129/93 (6 am)
  • Blood Sugar: 101 (6 am)

Saturday, October 28th. 2017

Weight 213 lbs (on my grandma’s dial scale)

Food:

  • Kroger carbmaster yogurt
  • French onion soup
  • Chili
  • Cauliflower mash
  • Applesauce

I did not bring my blood pressure machine with me to my grandma’s house so I did not take it today, maybe I don’t want to know anyway.  My grandma’s scale is not as precise as mine is plus, since I was walking through her house, I was wearing more than just my underwear (which is all I usually have on for weighing myself) so I do not consider this weigh-in as an increase.  I shall see what the scale says tomorrow though, I did eat out twice today.

I spent the night at my grandma’s house again and we watched a movie as a family.  Even though she rarely does things like this, she brought out some lemon drops to pass around, which I used to like but obviously contain way too much sugar for me now.  My fourteen year-old cousin was a little bit of a jerk about it though, he was waving the dish under my nose and saying things like “you know you want one . . . or more” but I managed to ignore him pretty well.  It is just his age that makes him act like that, I am pretty sure.  I am very fond of him in general.

Medications:

  • 500 mg Metformin x 1 ½
  • 28 mg Iron x 1

 

  • Blood Sugar: 101 (9 am)

Sunday, October 29th. 2017

Weight 209.8 lbs

Food:

  • Cashews
  • ½ % milk
  • Muenster cheese
  • Roast turkey
  • Steak burrito
  • Refried beans

Ah, home again.  I got some groceries, including some nuts, which I wasn’t specifically told not to eat but seem kind of iffy as a choice during the “soft foods” stage.  I decided to go for it but pay extra attention to chewing them until they are basically nut butter in my mouth.

Medications:

  • 500 mg Metformin x 1 ½
  • 28 mg Iron x 1

 

  • Blood Pressure: 131/86 (10 am)
  • Blood Sugar: 106 (9 am)

Monday, October 30th. 2017

Weight 209.8 lbs

Food:

  • Melba toast
  • Cream cheese
  • Beef stew
  • Wheat thins
  • Muenster cheese
  • Roast turkey
  • Beef bologna

I probably had too many carbs today but I had protein too.  I chewed my crackers super thoroughly, so they should be okay (I hope). I have not felt any stomach problems lately.

Medications:

  • 500 mg Metformin x 1 ½
  • 28 mg Iron x 1

 

  • Blood Pressure: 125/89 (6 am)
  • Blood Sugar: 121 (6 am)

Tuesday, October 31st. 2017

Weight 209.8 lbs6 weeks post surgery

Food:

  • Kroger carbmaster yogurt
  • Beef stew
  • Wheat thins
  • Meatballs
  • Marinara sauce
  • Spaghetti squash
  • Parmesan cheese
  • Sugar free fruit punch

witch closeupI took some pretty terrible photos today, partially because I was hurrying to get dressed for work and partially because I was wearing a camisole which is loose at my waist.  It doesn’t really show off my figure but I haven’t lost weight in days anyway.  It does kind of look like I don’t have bottoms on but I do – really, I swear.

Today is Halloween!  I have a costume in my closet which I have not worn in about a decade (when I managed to drop more than a few pounds on Weight Watchers for a short time).  My mom made the dress years ago, probably in the eighties.  She was never as big as I am but she probably did not mean to wear it the way I do either.  I did break a button off when I wore it last time and I had forgotten to sew a new one on at any point over the years.  Anyway, I stuffed myself into it like a sausage then put on a witch hat and called it a costume.  I did get a lot of compliments at work.  The button wasn’t even really noticeable because instead of fitting along my stomach like I think the band is supposed to, it bunched up under my bust, hiding the fault.

witch costume

Medications:

  • 500 mg Metformin x 1 ½
  • 28 mg Iron x 1

 

  • Blood Pressure: 127/93 (8 pm)
  • Blood Sugar: 150 (8 pm)

5 weeks Post Surgery

My blood pressure has been kind of high for a little while now.  It is not nearly as high as it was when I first started

I got to the end of the entries that I had set up to post automatically but I was sort of keeping track still.  I did a bad job for a few days of noting what I ate but I have at least some of each day recorded.


Wednesday, October 18th, 2017

Weight 213.4 lbs

Food:

  • Kroger carbmaster yogurt
  • Water
  • Chicken chili
  • Reduced fat cheese
  • Banana
  • Wheat thins
  • Hummus
  • Apple juice
  • Reduced fat string cheese

Again, we ordered in at work and I had to eat the lunch I brought with me.  It’s okay, at least the chicken chili is tasty, especially with cheese.

Medications:

  • 500 mg Metformin x 1 ½
  • 15 mg Lansoprazole x 1

 

  • Blood Pressure: 123/94 (6 am)
  • Blood Sugar: 124 (6 am)

 

  • Protein: 44 g
  • Fluid: 34 oz

Thursday, October 19th, 2017

Weight 214.2 lbs

Food:

  • Pudding
  • Wheat thins
  • Hummus
  • Crystal Light
  • & other things I forgot about

 

It has been one month now since my surgery.  My weight did go up slightly today although that might have something to do with my slight constipation, likely to do with not meeting my fluid goal lately.

I took my last antacid or protein pump inhibitor or whatever it is today.  I hope not to get acid reflux starting tomorrow, I guess I will have to wait and see (and take Tums if I need it).

I wrote down what I was eating on a sheet of paper which I seem to have lost.  So, the next several days will be pretty vague – based only on my memory and with no actual figures regarding protein or fluid intake.  I also seem to have neglected both my blood sugar and blood pressure today.  For shame!

Medications:

  • 500 mg Metformin x 1 ½
  • 15 mg Lansoprazole x 1

Friday, October 20th. 2017

Weight 214.2 lbs

Food:

  • Yogurt
  • Hummus
  • Wheat thins
  • Milk
  • Banana
  • & other things I forgot about

I started taking an iron supplement today.  I probably should not have done that in conjunction with ending the other medication because it will be hard to tell what upsets my stomach if such a thing does occur.

I felt weird at work today – slightly feverish and generally yucky.  I usually go over to my grandmother’s house on Fridays but I called in sick to hanging out because I really do not want to pass anything along to my 85 year-old grandmother.  She’s pretty spry but more vulnerable than I am, so it’s better to be safe than sorry.  I lay around feeling yucky then went to bed early.

Medications:

  • 500 mg Metformin x 1 ½
  • 28 mg Iron x 1

 

  • Blood Pressure: 125/90 (6 am)
  • Blood Sugar: 129 (6 am)

Saturday, October 21st. 2017

Weight 213.4 lbs

Food:

  • Eggs
  • Milk
  • Pudding
  • Protein shake
  • Lemonade
  • Peanut butter
  • Strawberry preserves
  • & other things I forgot about

So far, so good, acid-wise.  I felt mostly better today although I did throw up a bit and not because I ate too much this time!  (I tend to think of that as spitting up, like a baby does.)  I napped a lot and went to the grocery store, so I did have to get dressed.  My fever seems to be gone although I still feel “blech” in general.

Medications:

  • 500 mg Metformin x 1 ½
  • 28 mg Iron x 1

 

  • Blood Pressure: 125/91 (10 am)
  • Blood Sugar: 122 (10 am)

Sunday, October 22nd. 2017

Weight 212.6 lbs

Food:

  • Milk
  • Peanut butter
  • Strawberry preserves
  • French onion soup
  • Tiny steak
  • String cheese
  • Tofu

I actually left the house today and felt pretty decent.  I went to a restaurant where I had a cup of soup and a filet mignon slider, it was super cute and also delicious although I did not eat the bun or lettuce (per my diet) and just consumed the tiny steak.

Medications:

  • 500 mg Metformin x 1 ½
  • 28 mg Iron x 1

 

  • Blood Pressure: 124/92 (9 am)
  • Blood Sugar: 112 (9 am)

Monday, October 23rd, 2017

Weight 212.6 lbs

Food:

  • Yogurt
  • Beef stew
  • Wheat thins
  • Juice
  • Milk
  • Baked potato
  • Sour cream
  • String cheese
  • broth

Medications:

  • 500 mg Metformin x 1 ½
  • 28 mg Iron x 1

 

  • Blood Pressure: 120/94 (6 am)
  • Blood Sugar: 126 (6 am)

Tuesday, October 24th. 2017

Weight 212.2 lbs5 weeks post surgery

Food:

  • Lemonade
  • Hummus
  • Wheat thins
  • Banana
  • Chicken tortilla soup
  • Saltines
  • & other things I forgot about

My blood pressure has been kind of high for a little while now.  It is not nearly as high as it was when I first started the Losartin-Hydrocholorthyazide but the systolic has gone above 130, which my doctor said means I should take half a pill.  I don’t think I will take anything yet though, I will wait and see how the numbers continue to trend.  I don’t like where my diastolic has been either, though.  At least it is staying in the two-digit range still.

Today at work, somebody brought in candy to share.  There were full size Milky Way bars (my favorite) and white chocolate Twix bars which seem weird but I would have totally eaten. They were in front of me but I resisted and I feel particularly proud of myself for doing so.  Maybe it would have been a small feat for some people but for me, it was major!  It does help that my co-workers, despite leaving the candy in front of me, were supportive.  “You look great, don’t eat that.”  felt encouraging rather than judgemental; I guess it is largely my frame of mind.  Also, like kind grownups, nobody said anything like “come on, you know you want one” or anything like that.

Medications:

  • 500 mg Metformin x 1 ½
  • 28 mg Iron x 1

 

  • Blood Pressure: 132/94 (6 am)
  • Blood Sugar: 100 (6 am)