The Little Engine That Could

Tuesday, November 11, 2008

Family and Love and a little bit of Rock


I've been all sorts of busy. A couple weekends ago, the entire Pop side of the family came into town and we celebrated 60 years on the planet for him and Mom, along with saying goodbye to Grampa.

I've never been a huge fan of one of my uncles, he's just enough older than me to be annoying, and yet he's too young to be a parent figure. He had a different experience growing up than the rest of them and somehow I make it his fault for being that way. He just grew up as he knew how to grow up.

Anyhow, he proudly put on his tartan jacket and raised a glass. He started off by saying that in his years of journalism, only remember the positive stuff. Which was so not going to be the case. It shifted the room, as we all sat there with our glasses of scotch waiting to salute him. It shifted how his brothers looked at him, all of a sudden, he was an adult, and he was saying how this goes.

He went on to say that he hopes heaven is like a big picture window, people sitting around watching their friends and family do the things we do everyday. Grandchildren in plays and basketball games, spelling bees and soccer tournaments, getting married, having babies, etc. There wasn't a dry eye in the room.

We sent grampa on his way to heaven with a toast, a couple of tears and some great memories. And our hearts were a little less heavy than they had been before.

Sometimes I get reminded that we can't choose who our family is. It's like a big test that the universe put together for us to remind us of all the things we can't stand in ourselves. I hope that it makes me patient and kind, because right now all it feels like is annoying.



James and I no longer talk about when he's moving in. It's me who has to accept that he lives here on the weekends, and that he's not a guest. And that on the weekends we actually can do things apart from one another, like go to brunch or get a mani-pedi, or just do errands.

He is so incredibly uncomplicated that it baffles me. He loves me. He also loves to tease me, sometimes a little too much. I call him "The Needler" because every now and again he just does the most jackassery things. Ahh. But he's my jackass.

We went to a Halloween party at his brother's house. Had a great time. I smoked a couple cigarettes, which I haven't done since the beginning of the month, and I felt gross. I haven't been smoking because I realize it just isn't who I want to be. I want to be fit and healthy and full of energy. Not a smoker.

He left jammies at my house. I love him even more.



For James' birthday, my mom bought tickets for us to go see ROCK OF AGES. We really didn't know what to expect.


I grew up in sunny Southern California in the midst of the hair metal 80's and early 90's. I spent an enormous amount of time going up to Hollywood Blvd. and the Sunset Strip and walking up and down between the clubs, just trying to meet bands or guys in bands. Actually, I was just the sober driver-- I had two friends that were really into that, but I just went along because it was kinda cool. I realize now that I was so totally uncomfortable in that situation, not wanting to talk to anyone, not having fun-- that it made me into a more comfortable adult that can talk to anyone. Because I don't have whatever that thing was that prevented me from saying "Hey this isn't fun anymore."

I just realized something-- we were like, umm, jail bait-- hanging out at these clubs and rockers apartments. What the hell were these guys thinking....? What the hell were we thinking...?

Anyhow-- ROCK OF AGES!

Storyline is super simple, guy goes to Hollywood to make it as a rocker, girl goes to Hollywood to make it as an actress. They meet. Throw in a bunch of great rock ballads (less hair, more arena) and a couple of hard rocking songs, a Brett Michaels-esque character, some bad 80's stripper fashion, a mean developer and voila-- a show to be entirely entertained by. The best thing about it was the narrator. A little Jack Black, a little Timothy Olyphant, and a whole lot of fun and laughter.

James loved it. Laughted and smiled the whole way through it. I loved it. We are going back to see it with friends, it was that good. I wasn't even annoyed with Constantine, who plays the kid trying to make it as a rocker-- he is a fairly decent actor-- actually quite humble and slightly endearing. I can see that this may be his arena-- shows that rock that almost make fun of themselves.

Now my man is obsessed with re-creating the set list. It's actually quite adorable.

And that's all for updates. Well, weight wise I am still hanging stong in the 260's. I have started weight training. And am making the right choices for the day. One of the things I notice is my impulses to eat are so overwhelming that my feet actually lead me places. My brain turns off just for that moment. Yesterday, I was walking to the subway and then I was walking to the cupcake shop. And I turned my feet around and walked to the subway.

If I just make the right choice every day to make smart choices, my "treats" will be once a week rather than once a day. My old boss made it a point that there was no dessert until Friday night, and she could have dessert on the weekends only. It might be a good place for me to start-- treats on the weekends only.

I guess I would have to define treats:

Anything sweet
ice cream
breakfast sweets (danish, hummentasha, sweet rolls, coffee cake, donut, etc)

Anything that I know I shouldn't have regularly
Fried food
appetizers (mozzerella sticks, chicken wings, poppers, fried cheese)

If I gave myself an opportunity to have these once a week, I guess I wouldn't feel deprived. What I have been doing with the sweets is getting the popsicles or fruit bars and having those in my fridge for the week. I don't need that. I also don't need the sugar free stuff. A wise man said 'If you wouldn't normally eat sugar free/ fat free/ etc-- why eat it now? Don't substitute processed for whole food."

So on the weekend, I'll give myself permission to have a small bag of M&M's. Or a cookie/ danish/ cupcake. But I don't have to go overboard. Just enough to be satisfied and not deprived.

I figure I have about 70 pounds to lose off this frame. I know I can do this.