Extending Our Happily Ever After

"We do! Now let's live healthy and fit!"


Happy New Year – Where I stand with my weight now…

This is my husband and I now (in Bryant Park, NYC at Christmas 2014)… we’ve both gained some weight back… He’s gained back more than I but I’ve gained back about 40 from my lowest weight here on SparkPeople

If I have to sum up the “WHY?” I’d simply say that I let myself get LAZY all over again.

I always loved food, but I don’t really want to blame it on that. I was eating great, healthy food when I was losing the weight before. Sure, I wasn’t eating all the junk I’m eating now… and that JUNK is addicting! Sugar is addicting! Now, I’m back to the point of having to basically get myself “off of it” all over again, like an addict, which is basically what I am.

But, the real culprit here is ME. It always was. It was ME who got me to near 400 lbs when I started my journey and it’s ME who is starting to derail myself again. I am and always did have a tendency for laziness. It is what it is. I actually have this HUGE desire to sit around and do NOTHING. Well, not nothing, exactly… but watch TV… watch MOVIES… do sedentary things… things that don’t exert any energy whatsoever. Things that go so much better with JUNK food!

Yes, I had a good pattern going before, when I woke up with tons of energy and came home from work, put my workout DVD (Leslie Sansone’s Walk Away The Pounds) and made it a point to exercise before I then sat down to eat and watch tv… I even (gasp) ate less because who wants to eat tons of food when you just did a workout? Then, when you feel great, look great and feel all tone, you can actually get yourself out of bed on a weekend and go to the lake to take a brisk walk (3.5 miles) and come home feeling all good about yourself after getting your exercise in for the day and then you can do whatever you want, like watch DVD’s all day if you want to! LOL

But, really… The thing with exercise is that you are able to do more, you are able to feel better about EVERYTHING and you do start to eat healthier, it’s a product of feeling better and your body does start to get fit because of the exercise.

Once I stopped exercising, everything just fell apart. My body is soft again (and not in a good way!). I’m hungry ALL THE TIME! I’m basically too tired to cook a decent, healthy meal and do you see where I’m going with this?

So, this is what’s what for me in 2015… I’m not going to focus on the food for today, or even this week, what I will focus on is the exercise. I’m going to get that back into my life. I know for a fact that by inserting it back into my daily routine, the rest will fall into place and I can regain some control again. TV and movies will still be there, they will just have to wait for 30-60 minutes… that’s what videos and DVD players are for!

Pic of my son and I at Bryant Park in NYC where we went for Christmas this year.

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Today’s Trip to NYC – Trumpet City 2014

Today, I took a trip into NYC. I watch a site called gothamist.com and it basically tells all the goings on about NYC. Since it’s a town I often like to visit, I like to go there to see things that are unique and different and inexpensive. Well, this month, NYC is doing a “Summer Streets” program and today they were doing a Trumpet City installation. You can read about it here: http://www.onfootproductions.org

Christopher is due home today from his time away at PGSS (Pennsylvania Governor’s School of Sciences) and I know that he’d have truly enjoyed this (plus, he loves going into the city for ANY reason!)… but he wasn’t home today. So, I asked a girlfriend of mine from work, as Ivan was working tonight. So, we headed out and really enjoyed ourselves!

Usually when I go into NYC, I head into Greenwich or Chelsea and hang out down that way, but this time, I was over in Upper East Side. The Trumpet City installation was showcased on Park Avenue between 46th and 72nd. We found parking on 63rd between 2nd and 3rd Ave for only $10 using the Best Parking app! Love that!

I noticed, when I was looking at the map this morning that we were very near the Roosevelt Island Tram and I had seen it before but have never been on it, so I googled it and saw that it was only $2.75 each way. The tram station is located on 60th and 2nd Avenue. We were able to head over there after checking out Trumpet City and then we walked around Roosevelt Island for a bit… not long, as I had to get back for Ivan to get to work, but we truly had a great day today!

Not the normal activities for a trip into the city, but for a quick trip, it was very artsy and very inexpensive! LOVE THAT!

Below are a few photos of today. You might not “get it”, but as we walked up (or down) Park Avenue, the sounds of the trumpets as you walked by and another trumpet taking over the notes/tunes, blending in with the sounds of the city… it was just such an awesome experience… one I won’t forget and one I am glad I got to experience! BTW, my son would have LOVED it!  Here is a video of today’s Trumpet City:  http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=pzmV4YX3OIE






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Day 6 – 100 Day Challenge

Hi everyone!

I had such fun today!

We left just after 7 am, which got us in the city just after 9:30 am! I had my Amla powder and grabbed some water and a Greek yogurt for the drive… Ivan grabbed some prunes.

That’s about the extent of my healthy eating! Honestly! I wasn’t even going to think about being healthy today, though. I’ve been good and today was about having fun for us. And about enjoying the food!

We picked up my nephew and his girlfriend at the bed-n-breakfast near Times Square and then drove them down to Battery Park to see Lady Liberty (The Statue of Liberty)… Ivan (my hubby) got out with them to show them how to get around the park to where they needed to see her. I drove with my son, Christopher, around to hang out til they were done and then swing back around and pick them up. The parking garage would have been nearly $17 just for an hour! No way, we just hovered and avoided parking cops for a while! LOL

Then, we found a parking garage in Greenwich Village on 12th Street between 6th and 7th that was only $12 for the day! (There is inexpensive parking in NYC if you only look for it!) We walked to Bleecker Street (our fav!) and stopped into Murray’s Cheese Shop for breakfast. Had a Cheese Melt (basically a grilled cheese)… I gave about a 1/4 of it to my son. It was soooo good. He had a risotto ball (I didn’t try it, but he said it was fantastic!). Ivan had a cheese melt, too! Only $3.99! Then, went to Amy’s Breads and got some Baguettinis for later.

Walked up Bleecker (towards 9th Ave) and went in and out of shops, then stopped in David’s Tea. I had the Saigon Chai (very good and spicy!) for $4, Christopher had the Organic Breakfast with Darjeeling and said it was very good, as well! More shops, in and out…

Eventually, we ended up at the High Line… one of our favorite destinations in NYC! Such a beautiful park… although, at this time of year, it’s a bit desolate looking. However, it’s still a nice way to see the city. Today, honestly, was one of the nicest days in a while… It was chilly, but seriously? It could have been alot worse! It has been super bitter lately and the weather wasn’t at all bad today. The sun was out, the wind was fairly tame. It was bearable! Thank God! With the upcoming storm, who knows what tomorrow will be like or Monday… but today was actually quite nice to walk around the city!


We walked from one end to the other of the High Line, then back to the top of Chelsea Market and then down to the Market itself. Once there, we just went in and out of most of the shops. Also, grabbing a few items along the way. Some candies… but just $1.63 worth of chocolates that Ivan and I shared! I think that is GOOD! Things like Bacon Toffee with Chocolate, or Coconut, Curry Cashews, etc… little bits, just to try! I mean, we had to try! Then in the grocery store there, I finally found some carrot juice, so I bought a bottle of that and Ivan and I shared it. Sweet and very good! Then in the restaurant supply store, I got an orange peeler… just like the one Tupperware sells, although I can’t find mine, so I needed another. We ended up at The Lobster Place and ordered lunch. Christopher and I got the Lobster Rolls and split an order of fries (he had more than half) and he got a nutella cookie (I didn’t). Ivan got the fish and chips. Nephew and his girlfriend split the fresh, steamed lobster and also had some sashimi. Everything was AMAZING and definitely worth the trip! Our lunch was just under $60. A splurge, for sure, but definitely a rarity for us.


Then, we went into another shop and there was this yogurt place in the back (forgot name)… and he sold a probiotic lemonade. Made with whey. Well, I only had my greek yogurt in the morning, so I needed another probiotic, so I ordered it. Well, Ivan and I were ok with it, no one else liked it! LOL And, we honestly didn’t finish it, boy, was it strong!


There is this shop in there that sells Olive Oils and Vinegars… there is this Cinnamon Pear Balsamic that was AMAZING… 200 ml was about $9. We didn’t get any, but we are headed back in April and maybe then… It may call to me in my dreams! Super good. There was a blurb on it that it’s Whoopie Goldberg’s favorite…. (really? Who knows?)

Some cupcake shop on the way out had a chocolate ganache cupcake (small) and I got two, cut both in half and we all tried it.. it had a vanilla buttercream center. Very good! Quick stop into Dickson’s farmstand meats for some smoked ham (for those baguettini’s)… then we were done, it’s about time, right? LOL

I was still yearning for my Crumbs cupcake and hadn’t had it yet…

We headed back to our car to grab my son’s clothes, as we were dropping him off with his dad, who was to meet us in Grand Central. He’s coming home tomorrow (hopefully before it snows)…

So, once we got his bag, we then walked to Union Square to catch the 4 train… Ivan was exhausted, and it was a bit of a hike… Once there, there is a Crumbs bakery just outside. Got my cupcake! It was a Thin Mint Girl Scout cupcake! Chris got one, too. Got Ivan a Carrot one and nephew got a Thin Mint one, too.


back into Grand Central for some last photos and a few hugs. Son with his dad, nephew and his girlfriend off to their next excursion, then Ivan and I heading back to subway to then make last trek to our car. Back to Union Square and a few (literally, about 4) turns back and forth before we were finally headed in the right direction to our car.

We ended up in Tortoria for some chips and guacamole (O-M-G!) Seriously? Best guacamole I have EVER had! Sooooooo good! Literally an impromptu stop because we were looking to use a bathroom before the drive home! Delicious!

Got the car, got on the road… stopped into our favorite healthy grocery store, Fairway in Woodland Park, NJ on the way home… where I got a HUGE bottle of water 1.5 L and some more carrot juice (yay!) and Ivan got some coffee (which is a standard treat for him when we go there).

Got home around 9 pm, which wasn’t bad at all!

Note about day… had alot of fun and realized that if we hadn’t of lost the weight we had and changed our lives for the healthier, there is no way we’d have been able to enjoy a day like today. I was nearly immobile in March of 2012, when I literally could not stand more than 5 minutes! I couldn’t do a shopping trip in Walmart without having to sit down to rest and today, I didn’t need to sit down ONCE! Then with my new hip (I had a hip replacement surgery last May), it’s amazing that I’m walking like I never had a problem, ever! Today was a gift for us both… one that we gave to ourselves… so, with that said… We were grateful for today. It was a blessing! Then, to wrap up our thoughts, spending the day with my nephew and his lovely girlfriend was a treat. They were personable and we all got along so well. We truly enjoyed their company all day and can’t wait to see them again!

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Easter Weekend… blow out!

Well… wow! Talk about derailment.

I think I have had more carbs than I have had all year long! Probably more bread just in the past weekend than I’ve had all year long, as well! We went into NYC for the weekend… visited a few bakeries… had some cupcakes (well, 1 HUGE one and a half of one that I split with my husband).

Basically, we started our day at Crumbs bakery and each (hubby, myself and my son) had a Canoli Cupcake… where you not only get that HUGE cupcake, but a canoli sits right on top of it! That was in Times Square. We did start our day there… so that was basically breakfast! We walked from there to Macy’s, about 10 blocks? Saw the flower show going on at Macy’s Herald Square… BEAUTIFUL! Then, took subway to Chelsea Market… then walking from that point on.


Walked to Bleecker Street and that was another bakery, for a roll and a sourdough twist for my son and I and two hot cross buns for my husband… then another bakery for that 1/2 a cupcake and a mini cupcake for my son. Lunch for my son was a slice of pizza and Ivan had a potato roll at an Indian restaurant and I had a veggie plate at the same restaurant (chickpea saag w/lentils and naan, didn’t eat much of the rice that came with it and left alot of the lentils… but ate ALL the saag, loved that!). Then we walked all the way to Ground Zero and saw the Freedom Tower.


Walked back up to Greenwich Village later for dinner… where hubby and I split a hamburger and fries and I had water. All and all, maybe we didn’t do that bad… We did alot of walking.

I just think that the types of food we ate, when we aren’t used to eating breads and sweets, is what I’m feeling more than the quantity of what we ate, ya know? We are so used to eating alot of food, but it’s more fruits and vegetables, nothing quite so heavy.

We even got a walk in yesterday… less than 2 miles, but it was something. Had such a great weekend, though. Sun was out and so many New Yorkers were, as well… It was the first real feeling of Spring in the air. This was Saturday. Yesterday… not so much, the Sun was hidden by the clouds again and then it rained in the afternoon again. But, Spring is trying to break through! I, for one, can’t wait! (I know I’m not the only one!)