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Maria7 - Thursday Dec 02, 2010
(Small Changes Make Big Successes)
Weight: 143.2

For God so loved the world, that He gave His only begotten Son, that whosoever believeth in Him should not perish, but have everlasting life. John 3:16




Merry Christmas, Friends!

I have had a busy day today...first cleaned and straightened the house, then took off the trash, then paid a bill, then went shopping at a thrift store.  I found a size 8 very long 100% cotten (I love 100% cotton for jeans and jean-skirts) blue jean skirt in like-new condition for a little over $2.00 and got it.  Also I bought a $2.00 aqua-green (especially for Christmas) v-neck pullover mostly acrylic sweater in a size too large which will have to be altered to fit smaller (easily done).  The skirt will be altered as well, to change the design as it has the split in the front and I don't like that, I preferr that in the back, so the front split will be changed to a back split instead. 


I spent about an hour and a half visiting Mom in her room at the nursing home this afternoon and I took down all the autumn decorations on her side of her room (she has a new roommate who is improving from a bad fall, thank you for your prayers for her) and I put up Christmas decorations, which included her Christmas stocking with her name on it, also some of her little stuffed Christmasy-looking toys taped around her large mirror, and I also took her little Christmas tree and re-decorated it, which is about 2 feet tall and put that on her dresser in front of her large mirror (which is over her dresser at the foot of her bed in front of her to see).  The little miniature tree has a big red bow on it with streamers, with lots of colorful ornaments, red and gold beads wrapping around it, and an angel at the very top of the little tree.  Mom was very happy with the new Christmas decor to look at!   She and I had a banana each together before I began on the project.  Sooo...it is done now. 

I'm back home now, looking at the fire in the fireplace off and on as I key to you...

Well...as for the Christmas decorations here at home, I have decided to decorate, however, in moderation (so far)...I loved ALL of your suggestions...and carefully considered each one...they were ALL GOOD and I thank you for them.  To make a long story short, today I've put up the big Christmas wreath on the front door and also some little doorknob Christmas bells, which Hubby objected to the bells as it is hard to close the door, so I put them on the inside but then realized I only need to bend back part of the material on them and the door 'should' shut easily.

The neighbors' already have their FULL FRONT YARD ATTIRE set out and  LIT UP at nite.  We're talking A LOT OF STUFF.


A week ago I was excited about Christmas decorating and now that it is time to do it, it seems like the time has SPEEDED up and there's not enough time to do it....???

I think I just feel SO RELIEVED about the large volume of autumn decor being put away and not having to see all of that every day that that's what has me cautious about Christmas decorating this year.  Not to mention so much work and then the work to take it all back down and put it back away in just a few weeks.   Noooooo...I can't blame it on that...It is more than that.  To put up the giant Christmas tree in the living room means moving ALL the furniture around in the living room to make room for it ( a LOT OF WORK!).  Top it off, I've been thinking of changing the dining room into the piano room and an unused bedroom off the kitchen into a new dining room that would be larger than the dining room we have now.  How does this relate to Christmas decorating???  Once the ball is rolling and that huge tree is out of the closet (btw, it is one of the kinds that has different colors of paint on the limbs and they have to fit into like-paint-colored-grooves as well as be fluffed up, a lot of work also).

Of course, I can always put up a pretty nativity scene on the dining room table or a small ceramic Christmas tree on the table and 'let it go'...but then, I WAS wanting to invite some friends over for a Christmas get-together and how would it be with the house not heavily decorated throughout? 

So...you see what I mean?  Thus the wishy-washy I think I will, I think I won't.... 


Hope you're having a blessed day!

Love, Maria


Progress as of today: 61.8 lbs lost so far, only 3.2 lbs to go!

moogy on 12/02/2010:
Well,I have to tell you that for your past two days entries you have sounded like an excited young lady. I think that if you are wanting to do major moving around the house this is the perfect set up. After Christmas when you have taken everything down, you will need to do a good clean, it will be a perfect time to shift rooms and kill two birds with one stone. That is what I would do anyway. Plus it would be a good workout for a couple of days and it is cold outside so it will keep you warm. That is it on the advice front. So glad that your mom was left enjoying her new decorations. Have a good night Maria.

moogy on 12/02/2010:
Just read you question, the school the children go to is the next street over, I can see part of the playground from up here. I listen to the music that plays from time to time during the day. That way I know what the boys are doing all day long. It is nearly 2pm here and shortly the music will start up for their last outside playtime before the 3pm let out of school. Hearing the carol singing will be lovely, perhaps nicer for me than being among the crowd of parents that will attend. Our streets round here are often filled with parents cars, private schools tend to attract very involved parents. My daughter loves it because the boys are literally one minute from school, six houses from ours, around the corner to the school. This has turned into a bit of an essay, sorry about that!

moogy on 12/02/2010:
I am not sure what I am suppose to forgiving you for, you haven't done anything wrong. However, what happens between us, stays between us, I won't tell V anything, I promise!!

moogy on 12/02/2010:
Oh!! I see, I didn't mind that at all, I sometimes feel like I am on a perch and I would love to be able to sing like a songbird.

just42day on 12/03/2010:
You are quite the shopper! Glad you found such great finds! That's so sweet of you to give your mom's room some holiday decorations. I'm sure she and her roommate really appreciate them. Glad her roommate is doing better! :)

selina on 12/03/2010:
Sounds like you are surrounded with Christmas and will have to surrender :)! But, how can you possibly not decorate if you are the only person that I know here on DD that puts up Chritsmas decor on your entry in the middle of the year? Enjoy your day!

belly on 12/03/2010:
haha! I do the exact same thing! One project turns into about 3 or 4! Furniture always gets re-arranged at Christmas! And the pantry gets completely organized as I start to pour over the cookbooks while I plan the baking that will be done this year! I love all your web decor on your posts! Fa-la-la-la-la!

Maria7 - Wednesday Dec 01, 2010
(Small Changes Make Big Successes)
Weight: 143.2

For God so loved the world, that He gave His only begotten Son, that whosoever believeth in Him should not perish, but have everlasting life. John 3:16




Merry Christmas, Friends!

I thank you for your votes re: Christmas decorating and still haven't made up my mind yet, so thought I would try it out here first on my journal today and see how I feel about it.  My house (since the autumn decorations have been put away and everything cleared and wiped clean) still has the 'cleared, cleaned, plain' look to it...that says 'very peaceful' and I know it is TIME to start decorating for Christmas and especially if I follow through with maybe having some friends over for a Christmas party later this month before Christmas (that's the reason for the beautiful picture above)...which that is a 'maybe, maybe not', to do that, too...

V, Moogy, and I had a very fun time last nite (that is, Wednesday morning for you, Moogy) teasing each other back and forth in our comments.  This place (DD) is so much fun! 

Anyway, thank the Lord for His protection on us, the tv-announced 'bad storms' played out before the front came through after midnite early this morning before daylight (while I stayed AWAKE reading the weather warnings for SC) and yours truly had comforted herself with an extra 700 calories OVER maintain calories for the day, so that's my today's confession.  (And Moogy and V, no I did NOT get into the fruitcake nor banana pudding.......but I did get in the the pb, donuts, and sunflower seeds...)  Needless to say after falling asleep around 2 a.m. or so this morning after having kept a watch on the oncoming weather radar and after just a few hours of sleep, being awakened by Hubby early this morning around 6 a.m., I am still very, very DROWSY and am having a mug of coffee with caffeine  which is NOT doing the job to get me woke up and going...so I am still lying on the bed with the computer beside me keying to you...

So if I sound a little 'off' (like I don't usually, hehehe), please just overlook it...yes, the Christmas tree is 'UP' on this entry but it is hiding in the closet of my study in this house...  The reason it is UP on here is so I can get my eyes accustomed to seeing it brightly blink and decide if I can contend with the same in an 8 foot version in our living room...

Actually, do you ever feel like this day would be a good day for sailing away.....???


Update:  Went to church tonite, played Christmas carols on the piano that we sang.  Back home now.  Have a little headache.  Finished the sunflower seeds. 



Hope you're having a blessed day!

Love, Maria


Progress as of today: 61.8 lbs lost so far, only 3.2 lbs to go!

liza36 on 12/01/2010:
I could sail away right now with the amount of rain that's coming down. Very stormy day here in Wash. DC. Have a good day yourself!

Umpqua on 12/01/2010:
I hope you get some rest today. You have an 8-ft Christmas tree? Must be gorgeous. My parents have a vaulted ceiling in the living room and always get a tall tree and it looks so great. Good on you for *confessing* your calories yesterday, I'm sure today will be better for you!

selina on 12/01/2010:
I went out last night and the neighborhood is getting so pretty and festive with all kinds of Christmas decorations and lights - so I thought of you! Have a great day!

hollybelle on 12/01/2010:
I keep telling you to come on over to KY - it is pretty and we'd love to see you! I am having decoration delemia myself.

V on 12/01/2010:
Well i must say I am proud of your treadmill workout!!! You and Moogy had me laughing all night!!!!! I wonder where she is...Now if your christmas decorations are nearly as festive as your post I know it will be fabulous!!!!! I am so happy to have all of you girls in my life :) Have a good one and Yayyy for avoiding the other goodies/stash LOL

hopingforhealth on 12/01/2010:
Well, you are decorating your post at least!

I definitely feel like sailing away sometimes, too. You are not alone.

moogy on 12/01/2010:
You are sounding a little waccky today Maria, and I like it. Girl, there is no way you would have a Christmas party without your full set of decorations up, your guests would be dissapointed, I am sure. Well done on restraining yourself with the storm comfort food.:)

just42day on 12/01/2010:
Love all your animated holiday decorations! Very festive

chidogs on 12/01/2010:
Maria, thanks for your lovely words. And I adore your picture. I like everything Kincaid does but he excels at Christmas paintings. (Disney too, but that's a whole other story). Anyway, I appreciate what you said and will do my best to work it out. :)

moogy on 12/01/2010:
Sorry you have a headache, I think you might have been a little tired and a little excited and a little bit stressed about playing the organ (I mean, you have to get it right don't you?). I hope you get/had a good night's sleep and feel better in the morning. XX

biscottibody59 on 12/02/2010:
Thanks for your comments--if the decorations are a little too daunting this year, just do a table centerpiece and a small tree or something like that. I don't know if you put up nativity scenes--maybe that at least if it's in your tradition?

Hope you're having a good one!

hopingforhealth on 12/02/2010:
Hey Maria! Just dropping by to say hi :)

Maria7 - Tuesday Nov 30, 2010
(Small Changes Make Big Successes)
Weight: 143.2

For God so loved the world, that He gave His only begotten Son, that whosoever believeth in Him should not perish, but have everlasting life. John 3:16




Hello, Friends!

It is a partly sunny/partly cloudy morning here in SC, USA.  The weather channel on tv is announcing we may get storms later today and tonite and that our high is to be mid-70's fahrenheit today, changing to 50's beginning tomorrow for highs (that's COLD to me).  

Our Daughter came over the other day and helped me 'undecorate' for autumn and right now, the house is CLEARED of seasonal decorations and looks so PEACEFUL this way that I'm tempted to let it alone and NOT DECORATE for Christmas (who, me???)...The fireplace mantle is cleared and wiped clean and fresh with NOTHING on it and so is the large dining room table... (except for a small Thomas Kinkade victorian-decor plate in the middle of the table) which bestowed many autumn decor items on each of them ...So...what's your vote???  Out with autumn, in with Christmas!  Or....Out with autumn and let everything stay PLAIN-looking through Christmas?  I'll be awaiting your comments...  

On the weightfront news....I weighed this morning and the scale read 143.2, which I am happy with...although I haven't lost any weight in a few days, at least I'm still at 143.2 today and that's A-OK with me!   

Not sure about plans for today...as I key it is very cloudy outside now but since it is supposed to be VERY WARM today, it may be a good time to be 'out and about'...


Hope you're having a blessed day!

Love, Maria


Progress as of today: 61.8 lbs lost so far, only 3.2 lbs to go!

Umpqua on 11/30/2010:
I say, do what makes you happy with the decorations! If you are enjoying a peaceful, uncluttered house, then keep it that way. If putting up your decorations will bring you joy then decorate away. I'm pretty ambivalent about decorating myself, before the boys came there were years when I hardly did anything except maybe a door wreath. The boys are excited to put up lights and help me decorate, so we'll be doing it up this year. I've always believed that the spirit of the season does not come from things, although they can be a nice reminder to all of the true meaning of the holidays!

just42day on 11/30/2010:
I agree w/Umpqua - do whatever makes you happy. (or you could comprise and just display one holiday decoration that you particularly enjoy. That way, the house remains relatively uncluttered but you have one nice decoration)

liza36 on 11/30/2010:
I'm one of those who does not put up one Christmas decoration, but that's because I'm not home enough to really enjoy it, or put the effort into it. I do, however, enjoy other people's decorations. I agree with the others, do what makes you happy. You could even leave it clean and clear for a few weeks, and right before Christmas get out your favorite things. Let us know what you decide.

selina on 11/30/2010:
I say - decorate!

I usually don't do anything except for decorating the tree (which we usually get just a few days before Christmas)but I love looking at other people's houses full of light and pretty things!

V on 11/30/2010:
Good afternoon my dear! You were up bright and early this morning too! I am sure by now that it is beginning to look alot like Christmas at your house ;)

OpenMyWings on 11/30/2010:
I can't wait to decorate for Christmas. I was going to start today, but I decided that dragging in all of those storage totes from our outside shed in the rain wouldn't put me in the decorating mood. Maybe tomorrow. Have a great day!

moogy on 11/30/2010:
Oh, I don't think for a minute what we said would stop you from decorating. I think you would sit around looking at your clean surfaces absolutely itching to get out your Christmas decorations. Enjoy yourself Maria. It is already December here so the tree and everything else is imminent.:)

lifestylechange on 11/30/2010:
Beautiful entry Maria! Thanks for your comment...:) I love pb too, I prefer creamy...:) But I like both! My ultimate goal is about 160 lbs but I don't like to overwhelm myself so I set "mini goals" and my next mini goal is 200! Thanks again for your support, so appreciated!! Have a great day!

moogy on 11/30/2010:
I won't say a word to V about the peanut butter, I can just picture you furtively grabbing that jar and sticking your finger in for a sneaky taste. You are so funny. Enjoy it and don't feel guilty about it, life is too short for guilt.:)

moogy on 11/30/2010:
I think it was probably your desire not to feel guilty. You made me laugh anyway!! So good for you. I would say that you need to have a thunderstorm now, so that you can get rid off all those goodies, can I come and share???? Funny lady:)

moogy on 11/30/2010:
Now, I don't want to put evil thoughts into your head, but one of my favourite decadent treats is to have a toasted peanut butter and bananna sandwich. You have to let it cool down a bit, but absolutely fills that emotional hole that needs attention every now and again. I can't remember the last time I had one of those. Maybe over Christmas, oh!!! for breakfast Christmas morning, yep, that will hit the spot!!

moogy on 11/30/2010:
Well thank you, Selina has also invited me over, but as I told her, I can afford the air fares at the moment. Maybe next year!!!!!!!

V on 11/30/2010:
Well it didn't rake long to figure out whom you made your confession to...Young lady! I am shocked, and to think Moogy was an accomplice(well not really but it sounds good) LOl You are so lucky i don't know where you live,I would take that peanutbutter, bread, pudding and if there is any donuts left that too! LOl I have to give it to you, when you fall off the wagon you make quite the dramatic fall!!! Now pack up what's left and out with it!!!

hopingforhealth on 11/30/2010:
I am all about the Christmas decorations. I have a teeny apartment and live alone and still do a bit of decorating. My family calls me "the keeper of Christmas tradition"... so maybe I am not totally unbiased, ha.

V on 11/30/2010:
Now i must applaud your effort to put the dounut in your allotment that peanut butter AND banana pudding as well....Out of the house with that jar does not mean taking it outside to eat it! LOl You are too funny!!!!

moogy on 11/30/2010:
That's it Maria, if you can't keep secrets I am not sharing with you anymore. I will be in trouble now, have you seen???? I have got to go on the treadmill three times a week now after this little secret pact!!!!!!!!!!!!! She is vicious!!

hopingforhealth on 11/30/2010:
I put up a little tree, a wreath and ornaments in all my wine glasses (which are stored sitting out). I'd put up a bigger one, but there's no room!

moogy on 11/30/2010:
I'll give you ooops, you told her about the toasted peanut butter and banana sandwich, have you no shame????????????? I can see we are going to have to work on some sort of code that she can't work out. We are going to have to be clever! You know what always helps me with my thinking????? one guess!!! (it is the start of the code)LOL

V on 11/30/2010:
Ummm i think that you have gravely mistaken my order to throw out the peanut butter as an invitation to eat more...As for you no more!! I have chose not to separate the two of you HOWEVER 3 days a week of hard labor/workouts for you as well...Thought you would get off so easy did ya??? NOT LOL

V on 11/30/2010:
I love how you are trying to make your own form of punishment, really cute but NOT!!

Maria7 - Monday Nov 29, 2010
(Small Changes Make Big Successes)
Weight: 143.2

For God so loved the world, that He gave His only begotten Son, that whosoever believeth in Him should not perish, but have everlasting life. John 3:16




Hello, Friends!

Been a busy day here...Did some house-cleaning this morning, followed by piano-music practice (mostly Christmas carols) here at the house, then this afternoon, I made a 'Christmas Gift Basket' to give to a person whose name I drew at the last church-ladies' outing, to give a Christmas gift to at our next monthly meeting, which will be our Christmas outing week after next that I am very much excited about and looking forward to attending.  After this, I visited Mom at her nursing home for a while.  After losing her second roommate (please pray for the family) recently, Mom now has a new roommate who is very sick (please pray for her as well...she had a serious bad fall and is recovering from that)...  I took Mom a sweet potato I cooked in the microwave and put a little margerine, cinnamon, and sugar (not much) on but she was not hungry for that and said she'd been wanting "m and m's" (chocolate candy)...so I went to the canteen and got her that and I also got a diet coke and a couple of cups of ice and straws and we shared the diet coke.  I sat with her a while and we had a nice visit.  Came home and been spending time with my wonderful, handsome Hubby this evening. 


Hope you're having a blessed day!

Love, Maria


Progress as of today: 61.8 lbs lost so far, only 3.2 lbs to go!

moogy on 11/29/2010:
I am making sweet and spicy nuts, and chocolate bark to give away as little gifts. I make pork and prawn spring rolls (egg rolls I think American's call them) for Christmas Eve, apart from that I don't do any baking, too warm for any serious stuff, I do however, make Christmas ice cream for dessert, best vanilla ice cream, raspberries, mini marshmallows and chocolate shavings (lots of them). We also make a baked ham with apricot jam, crushed macadamias,brown sugar and cinnamin glaze. I don't eat any of it and my daughter is actually doing it herself this year. I don't think eating any amount of vegies counts as a binge, no matter what type, so no worries there!!:)

V on 11/29/2010:
Prayers sent Maria! Always! I have a few christmas cds I was waiting to dust off and now it is time :) Have a wonderful evening Maria! Love ya :)

hopingforhealth on 11/29/2010:
I will keep your mother's roomate in my thoughts! I hope she gets better soon. It's good that you all had a nice visit today. Catching up on your entries, I'm glad that you are over the stevia troubles. Hope you had a great Thanksgiving!

moogy on 11/29/2010:
That is what I was going for, something easy and foolproof, but I will package them spectacularly, so they look fabulous!!

Umpqua on 11/29/2010:
Sorry to hear about your Mom's roommates. I'll be thinking of you and your family. That sweet potato sounds phenomenal!

belly on 11/29/2010:
Hi Maria, you have no idea how good your words were to hear! Your family and your mom's friend will be in my prayers tonight! I am super impressed that you lost almost 62 lbs!! Congrats! That's more than my 5 5-yr-old weighs! I can't imagine carrying my kid all day, you must feel so much better not hauling that around every day. Have a good day tomorrow!

nita51 on 11/30/2010:
Wish I was sitting in that cozy chair by the fire!!!!! :) :) :) Beautiful I'm saving that picture. Hugs

just42day on 11/30/2010:
Glad you had another nice visit with your mother. So sorry to hear of her changing roommate situation. That must be hard on her.

Maria7 - Sunday Nov 28, 2010
(Small Changes Make Big Successes)
Weight: 143.2

For God so loved the world, that He gave His only begotten Son, that whosoever believeth in Him should not perish, but have everlasting life. John 3:16




  Hello Friends!

I'm back to me again, and I thank the good Lord for healing me.  I also thank you for your wonderful supportive, encouraging comments you wrote on my journal while I was recovering from a 'bad trip' on 'Stevia in the raw'.    (No more of that!)  I got up this morning feeling so much better!    We went to church and I played the piano (I'm the church pianist) and we had a wonderful church service!  We even sang a Christmas carol!  Yep, it's 'that time' again!  The Christmas season! 

 We sang 'Beautiful Star of Bethlehem'.  I found a link on youtube of singers singing this song if you'd like to click on the following link to hear this beautiful song:


Hubby and I ate out buffet (I was REAL GOOD...I always WANT to eat more but I eat slowly and 'listen to my body' tell me when it is full 'enough') after church, then visited Mom at her nursing home.  She seemed to be doing well.  She was in her wheelchair and had just finished her lunch in the dining room.  She wanted to go in the room where the birds are (they have a large birdcage with lots of cute little birds in it in the foyer), so Hubby wheeled her in there and she decided she wanted us to set up camp by the sofa which was beside the gigantic, tall recently decorated Christmas tree.  So, Hubby and I sat on the sofa and she in front of us in her wheelchair and the 3 of us had a real nice visit.  It's sad, but I notice that most residents in the nursing home don't get many, if any, visitors.  Not saying that to try to exalt Hubby and me, but just saying it cause it is the SAD TRUTH.  Some of the residents in their wheelchairs sit nearby, looking very lonely, watching us visit with Mom when she is out of her room.  SAD. 





I got on the scale this morning and am at another lower number...143.2.  Only 3.2 away from 140.0 goal.  My bmi is now 21.8.  When I get to 140.0 (AGAIN), Lord willing, it will be 21.3.



Hope you're having a nice day!

 Love, Maria





Progress as of today: 61.8 lbs lost so far, only 3.2 lbs to go!

OpenMyWings on 11/28/2010:
I'm so glad that you're feeling better! You're right about the patients in the nursing homes, most of the time their families put them there and then forget about them. My mom was a nurse in a nursing home for over 30 years (until she became ill herself and could no longer work). It is a very sad reality.

moogy on 11/28/2010:
I am glad that you are feeling well again and that you had a good day. It is true that most people is nursing homes don't get visitors and just sit around staring all day long. I am praying that I drop of my perch quickly. Well done on your lower number, you are doing so well. You have been on a really good roll lately, keep up the great work Maria.

V on 11/28/2010:
What a beautiful sparkling tree :) And I dig that Mary and Joseph animation...I am always impressed/in awe of your computer skills, you see how long it takes me to post a picture you would LOL!! I am so happy your mom had a wonderful visit with you guys :) Have a good one Maria, love you!

V on 11/28/2010:
Sorry to hear what happened :( No More STEVIA!

Umpqua on 11/28/2010:
I'm glad to hear you're feeling better! You are doing great and are almost at goal, keep up the good work!

V on 11/28/2010:
The singers on the video has amazing voices :) Thank you for sharing

OpenMyWings on 11/28/2010:
No offense taken, she keeps us entertained! I've never seen a dog play by herself like my Mandi does - she even plays with balls like a cat would if we won't throw them for her.

just42day on 11/29/2010:
Glad both you and your mom are doing better! I'm sure she is so appreciative of your many visits. Yes, it is so very sad that other residents don't have visitors. RE: the gifts I bake: yesterday was batches of chex cereal mix and I still need to do cookies and beer battered onion rings for others.

selina on 11/29/2010:
Hi Maria, I'm so glad to hear you are over your stevia mishap. I didn't know they had such bad side efffects! Well, I have never been a user of artificial sweetners, so it's something new to me! How scary it must have been! I hope you'll have a good day, today!

Glad to hear your mom is doing well, although she does need her wheel chair. You are such a good daughter to her...

My MIL also has moved to a luxurious "retirement community." I was pretty impressed by her new digs - very high class, indeed. She has uniformed waiters to take orders at the restaurant where she eats her meals everyday, swimming pool, gym and so many ammenities that it looks like an exclusive club. She was living alone and enjoying her independence, but in the past few months, her short term memory declined substantially, so it was decided that she should move to the east coast, to the condo for everyone's peace of mind. She is still very active and can do everything on her own, she is sociable enough to make a whole network of friends in her new place and enjoy life. The added benefit is that she lives 20 minutes away from my brother-in-law's home and 5 minutes away from his workplace. She is only 2 hours away from us (at least for now that we live in this area), which is also an added bonus. I talk to her every morning on Skype and I can always see her through the webcam - she is always looking dressed up, wearing her jewelry and stuff - which makes me very happy! She misses her old friends on the other coast so much but she stays in touch by calling them every day!

At the retirement community, she has a neighbor that "steals" guests from her as soon as they get there and behaves as if she never gets a visitor, haha. According to my MIL, she does get a lot of visits from her daughter and son, every other day... she just can't get enough attention from guests, I guess. Anyway, when I went to visit her, this neighbor of hers invited our party (me, daughter, my husband, my brother-in-law and sister-in-law) to her condo and kept us there! Even before we had a chance to visit my mother-in-law's new digs. She even ordered us to sit down! She couldn't stop chatting and showed us her stuff on the walls and talked about her late husband - poor thing. She is sweet but she is a nuisance - I feel sorry for my MIL to have a neighbor like that!

liza36 on 11/29/2010:
I'm glad you are feeling better, and warned us about stevia. I had no idea of its side effects. Have a great day.

Maria7 - Saturday Nov 27, 2010
(Small Changes Make Big Successes)
Weight: 143.8

For God so loved the world, that He gave His only begotten Son, that whosoever believeth in Him should not perish, but have everlasting life. John 3:16




Hello, Friends!

It has been a rough nite last nite, with Hubby up at 3:30 a.m. offering to carry me to the emergency room over and over and over, while I was suffering severe dizziness with the room feeling and looking to me like it was spinning around me and nausea, not to mention a little anxiety, too.    I'm pretty sure this was a very bad reaction to 'stevia in the raw' sweetener.  I ingested about 6 packets, I think, in 3 large glasses of tea I drank very closely together yesterday afternoon and symptoms began after that.

It hit when I was driving, then went away a few minutes til I got to Mom's room at the nursing home and I had to quickly sit on the foot of her bed as I felt like I might fall over I was so dizzy...didn't stay long and she was angry and told me not to come see her if I couldn't stay longer than a few minutes, nevermind my telling her I was dizzy and needed to get home, but I left driving slowly anyway and the good Lord helped me get home safely.    Anyway, I'm better this morning, although I have a headache and tommmy-ache with nausea but the dizziness is almost all gone, thank You, Jesus!    Hubby told me from now on if I want to drink something sweet, drink it with sugar in it and if I want to drink something with no sugar, drink it plain and don't add anymore artificial sweeteners to it!  Here are some links about Stevia's side effects (also you might want to ready yesterday's update for some side effects I listed that could have been what affected me):    http://www.ehow.com/list_7353456_side-effects-truvia-stevia-plant.html 





Now these side effects may not affect all people but I just wanted you to know since I've publicly been including the fact that I've been using packets of stevia in the raw in my morning coffee.  But then I usually only have 1.5 packets each morning in my large mug of coffee and just occassionally I drink tea (usually one glassful sweetened with 2 packets) around midday or afternoon.  No more stevia for me! 

  No coffee this morning for me (tommy-ache).  Just plain ole' good tap-water (which we regularly receive letters has too many chemicals than is safely allowed in it from the water company!  )


Okay, it's time for some GOOD NEWS on the weight-front:  143.8 is my weigh in this morning!    BMI is now 21.9.


Hope you're having a blessed day!

Love, Maria


Progress as of today: 61.2 lbs lost so far, only 3.8 lbs to go!

chidogs on 11/27/2010:
How frightening you must have been. I know that dizzy feeling, but mine was caused by inner ear problems due to severe congestion. But it is certainly scary. I'm glad you are recovering now. Take care of yourself! And don't be bothered by your Mom, she isn't comprehending everything now and if she was she would have been very concerned for you. Hugs to you.

OpenMyWings on 11/27/2010:
I really hope you feel better soon! Could it be that you over-indulged in the Stevia? Or maybe a touch of the stomach flu? I'll say a prayer for you <<HUGS>>

Umpqua on 11/27/2010:
I'm so sorry you had that kind of reaction! Thankfully you made it home safely!! I have been using stevia (liquid drops) in my coffee for years and Truvia and other powdered stevia blends in my baking without any noticeable side effects. But it's a plant and people can certainly have allergic reactions to it. I've found that since ditching sugar I don't mind drinking my coffee without any sweetener (a little cream or milk is a must for me though). Oh who am I kidding - I'd drink it black if I had to, I'm a coffee addict! ;) I hope you feel better today!

tangalyn on 11/27/2010:
awww i sure hope u feel better soon! take care of urself! hope u have a good day!

just42day on 11/27/2010:
Sure hope you're feeling better! That must have been quite frightening. Glad you determined the cause.

moogy on 11/27/2010:
I hope that this reaction has left your system by the time you read this Maria. It is so scary when stuff like that happens. Natural is always better, we never know what they put in anything processed or artificial. I would say have a good day, but it really and hopefully couldn't be any worse than the one you just had. Hugs my friend.XXX

biscottibody59 on 11/28/2010:
Hope you're doing much better:-)

Maria7 - Friday Nov 26, 2010
(Small Changes Make Big Successes)
Weight: 144.4

For God so loved the world, that He gave His only begotten Son, that whosoever believeth in Him should not perish, but have everlasting life. John 3:16




Hello, Friends!

It is RAINING here.  I love a nice relaxing, rainy day but at the same time, as I sit here,

drinking my mug of coffee with stevia sweetener and a little fat-free creamer,

 I'm thinking...to go to the mall on 'black friday'...or not to go....


Btw, who says you can't LOSE weight over the holidays????  Yours truly has!  Ta-Da!!!  (Where did that turkey come from???  He must have been one of the ones that was pardoned!...or an escapee!)  Anyway, 144.4 is my weigh-in this morning, which I am very happy with and I think I'm fixing to be wearing size 6's (not my intention at all, as my goal was only 8's...but guess what?  My jeans are getting VERY ROOMY!)    Anyway, I am sort of tall (5'8") so my bmi this morning is...21.95!  


Update:  I just want to say that I am DONE with using Stevia in the raw (a sweetener)...I got very dizzy and nauseaus this afternoon after consuming 6 packets of it in 3 glasses of iced tea and this has continued on and I am still dizzy (but not quite as bad as hours ago) and it is hours later now...I did some research and found out Stevia sweetener can cause dizziness from a drop in blood pressure (not good and especially not good when driving!)...and I already have naturally low blood pressure...also it can cause allergic reactions in people with allergies to ragweed (which I have)...and it can cause low blood sugar and other problems...goodbye stevia!  Guess I'll go back to regular sugar in moderation for coffee and tea sweetener! 

Also...I was NOT a good girl today...I did some serious shopping at the mall!  I bought my Mom a real diamond and gold ring at a jewelry store for her Christmas present as she's only ever had one real diamond and gold ring and that was the one my Daddy gave her when they got married and years after he was killed by a drunk driver when we kids were little, Mom had to pawn her diamond and gold wedding ring at a pawn shop to get money for food or something that was needed and she ended up not having the money to get it out and lost it.  She LOVES rings and I buy her lots of them (nice fake ones at department stores) but lately, she's asked me if there is any gold in any of them and sadly, the answer was no.  She will be very surprised with her new real diamond and gold ring!  It was expensive and she may lose it or it may get stolen (but hopefully not...she keeps up with her fake rings and wears them)... but at least she will be very happy this Christmas! 


Hope you're having a blessed day!

Love, Maria


Progress as of today: 60.6 lbs lost so far, only 4.4 lbs to go!

Umpqua on 11/26/2010:
Great job on the weight AND BMI Maria, that is excellent! I was curious so I plugged in my numbers and I'll have to hit 123 to reach that BMI. I'm strving for a goal "range" of 120-125 so that's right in line. You are already there, kudos!

KathyBlue on 11/26/2010:
wow, great news! I think you should go and see Black Friday... but, after all, I'm a shopping maniac :P

OpenMyWings on 11/26/2010:
Congratulations! But you couldn't pay me to go shopping at all today :)

tangalyn on 11/26/2010:
great job losing weight over the holidays!! i think i found one of the pounds u lost along with a few more lol.. have a great day, be safe on the roads if u go out to shop!! :)

moogy on 11/26/2010:
Well done Maria. That is wonderful. I should think that you will be at goal by Christmas. I hope you have a good day today and enjoy yourself in your skinny jeans!!:)

OpenMyWings on 11/26/2010:
I've never used stevia. I do know that I can't use any artificial sweeteners as they trigger migraines for me. I have been using truvia, but only in my tea if I'm too short on calories to be able to use honey. I don't know if there's any difference between truvia and stevia, but it's worth a shot if you use sweetener. You're mother is very blessed to have such a wonderful, caring daughter!

OpenMyWings on 11/26/2010:
I don't have any side effects from Truvia. Splenda triggers migraines for me. Sugar really isn't that high in calories, but it does spike blood sugars. You need to do what's best and healthiest for your body. I used to always have to have sugar of some sort in my coffee or tea. I've gotten away from it with my coffee, but I still need a sweetener in my tea. I alternate between honey and truvia.

moogy on 11/26/2010:
What a lovely thought, I would love to go out to lunch with you, you being a professional an all:):). It would be nice to get out for a bit but unfortunately if it isn't one thing it's another, I am too scared to walk the streets in case I have a seizure. The health food shop will have some good alternatives to sugar, palm sugar is great and low gi, rice syrup and a few other that might be useful to you.

biscottibody59 on 11/26/2010:
Congrats on your continuing progress!

Not sure which stevia sweetener you're using, but the Truvia and PureVia both had other things in them when I read the ingredients at the store the other day.

So it may be that you could find a preparation that's pure stevia and nothing else. I hadn't heard of palm sugar or rice syrup. Good to know.

The above two are made by huge multinational corporations and it's to their advantage to come up with clever names and advertise widely. Note the connotations--"True" and "Pure." Yeah, pure and true HYPE--give me a break. It may be that plain old "stevia" with nothing added is not all it's cracked up to be, is bitter or too strong or not strong enough.

Nevertheless, I'm not completely familiar with it--I'd like to get away from all of it--have been trying to wean myself from the little cane syrup (100% sugar cane) I've been using in my coffee. (I started using plain unsweetened almond milk and it's just a bit bland compared to FF milk, which I used with NO sweeteners). Then again it's a half to a full teaspoon/cup and I normally only have one cup, so it's really not that big a deal.

I hope you're getting to feeling better after that reaction!

V on 11/26/2010:
Hi maria!!! i must say if the stevia does not serve you well then you must stop using it! As far as your loss well CONGRATS!!! Yes i can see the beach as from where I stand :) Love you

moogy on 11/26/2010:
Well, at least the alternatives come from a natural source, so they won't do you any damage.

biscottibody59 on 11/26/2010:
Hmm. I went to the website for the one you mentioned and the only other ingredient is dextrose. So that's interesting. I wonder if it's possible to overdose on the actual stevia or if you have a sensitivity to it.

And though they're completely separate types of sweeteners, what happened to you sounds a little like the reaction I got to aspartame a couple years ago. Aspartame is sheer poison to me--it messed me up terribly when I accidentally drank a diet coke.

My warming mattress pad is a low-voltage dealie. You don't notice the wires because they're almost not there. Every electric blanket I've ever had always got too hot and staticky no matter what and this is nothing like that. The company that makes it is called Perfect Fit.

Maria7 - Thursday Nov 25, 2010
(Small Changes Make Big Successes)
Weight: 144.6

For God so loved the world, that He gave His only begotten Son, that whosoever believeth in Him should not perish, but have everlasting life. John 3:16


  Hello Friends!

Happy Thanksgiving to you!

Today is a day to give thanks to God for His many blessings on us, especially for the gift of eternal life through our Lord and Saviour, Jesus Christ.

Hope you're having a nice day!

 Love, Maria



Progress as of today: 60.4 lbs lost so far, only 4.6 lbs to go!

Umpqua on 11/25/2010:
Happy Thanksgiving, Maria!

V on 11/25/2010:
Happy Thanksgiving Maria!!! Ultimate sacrifice and proof that God loves us that much! When I hear this I always think of the beatitudes..One that stands out Blessed are the pure at heart, for they shall see God :) Have a wonderful evening

moogy on 11/25/2010:
I hope you have a wonderful thanksgiving day with your family Maria.:)

nita51 on 11/25/2010:
Very beautiful post. Hugs to you.

Maria7 - Sunday Nov 21, 2010
(Small Changes Make Big Successes)
Weight: 144.6

For God so loved the world, that He gave His only begotten Son, that whosoever believeth in Him should not perish, but have everlasting life. John 3:16




  Hello Friends!

Hope you're having a nice day!

 Love, Maria



Progress as of today: 60.4 lbs lost so far, only 4.6 lbs to go!

loveray on 11/21/2010:
how was hiking amicalola? did you do all of the stairs? its a gorgeous hike. xo

moogy on 11/21/2010:
Thank you for the support Maria. I hope you are having a lovely day.

biscottibody59 on 11/22/2010:
Hey there! I'm leaving this comment in response to my other diary.

I actually ate fully this new way for about 4 days straight a couple weeks ago. Since then not so disciplined. And then with the cold of this past week I was up and down with my appetite. For a couple of days I ate just so I wouldn't dry up and blow away:-)

I appreciate your reading my entry--have a good day!

hopingforhealth on 11/22/2010:
Hey Maria! Hope you are having a nice Monday. :)

V on 11/23/2010:
Hey Maria :) I just wanted to see how you and Mom are doing :)

Soon2BThin on 11/25/2010:
Dear Maria, I love reading your entries. Wow, size 8!! I always start thinking "Could I really do that?!" It almost seems possible to me. But I would be happy at size 12 really. I feel like I've always been at least a size 14 (right now, size 16) It feels like a long way to go but, really, what else do I have to do? Might as well go for it. I try not to think of all my failures in the past. Can't do anything about those now. Hope you're having a great Thanksgiving.

nita51 on 11/25/2010:
My Dear, Happy Thanksgiving, I am happy that you are my friend.

Maria7 - Saturday Nov 20, 2010
(Small Changes Make Big Successes)
Weight: 144.8

For God so loved the world, that He gave His only begotten Son, that whosoever believeth in Him should not perish, but have everlasting life. John 3:16




Hello, Friends!

It is another chilly but sunny morning here in S.C. and I had a light breakfast of an egg and grits (no margerine) and have been drinking coffee with stevia.

Weighed in this morning at.....




Here is something I wrote years ago when I was much heavier (Started off at 205, size 20 and 22):

'I do not like my size.  i do not feel proud of my appearance at all.  I want to be slim again.  Later, I wrote:   'Had a depressing day.  Tried on clothes 3 times at the mall.  They either made me look fat in the hips or were too tight.  I couldn't even fit into (XX) .'  A few days after that, I wrote:  'Food is the hardest addiction to overcome because you still have to eat, only not for any reason than what is required to nourish the body PLUS NOTHING!  Don't eat for fun!  When you're bored, do other things.  Don't eat for comfort!  PRAY!  Don't eat when angry!  Do something constructive!  Food was meant for one thing!  Body Nourishment!  If your body is nourished, do not take in much food!  Exercise!  A lot!  Whenever and however long (you) can do it!  Do not give up.' 


Think I'll go Christmas shopping today.  Also thinking of going to the farmer's market and get some more fresh green string beans.  I like to take the ends off, then boil them til tender, then take some out of the water and sprinkle with a little salt and eat them that way, no oil nor other seasonings.  They are very nutritious and low in calories!


Hope you're having a blessed day!

Love, Maria


Progress as of today: 60.2 lbs lost so far, only 4.8 lbs to go!

biscottibody59 on 11/20/2010:
Ya' know I made myself a cup of chicken broth--I don't do the canned chicken noodle--too sensitive to MSG! And my stuffed up nose cleared--even though I couldn't taste it--always lose my sense of taste during the course of a cold. So thanks--your reminder was great!

Have a good one!

Umpqua on 11/20/2010:
Congrats on the loss Maria! And I really like what you wrote. I do think we can enjoy the tastes and textures of food as well, but we have to be mindful that the primary purpose is to nourish us. Hope you have a great day!

tangalyn on 11/20/2010:
great post today.. very motivating :) love the pics too! have a great day :D

OpenMyWings on 11/20/2010:
Oh, how I would love to snuggle up in that chair with a good book :)

hollybelle on 11/20/2010:
Maria! Oh those words! I LOVE IT!!!!! It's good to look back - do you know the date of that post? When you wrote it could you imagine where you are today? Awesome! God bless!

lifestylechange on 11/20/2010:
Have a great day!!!

hopingforhealth on 11/20/2010:
Maybe I do need to switch it up. I ordered a new exercise game, so hopefully when it comes it will help! Thanks for the encouragement.

Enjoy the christmas shopping. :)

V on 11/20/2010:
Awesome post today Maria! I am gonna have to say Amen!! glad you appreciated my warped sense of humor today ;)

moogy on 11/21/2010:
It was so interesting to read you entry from so long ago. It just shows how far you have come, not only in size but also in the way you now recognose and control your eating behaviour. I am so impressed and inspired by your journey Maria.

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