Super Scary Hallowe’en Weigh-In Edition!

Well, good morning, boys and girls! As you know, it’s almost time for the scariest day of the year — All Hallows Eve!! And Aunt 50by60 has some really scary stuff for you today!

count on it

First, of course, there’s the obligatory Weekly Weigh-in. Well, now THAT can’t be too scary! I mean, yeah, I haven’t exercised as much this last week, but I’ve been keeping an eye on my calories, kinda-sorta more-or-less! So let’s just step on the scales…

don't step on scales

…and see what…EEEK!!

190.0??
mr bill

Yikes! 190 is my (self-designated) Official Cutoff Point O’ Doom! So that’s really scary because it means I DO have to get off my butt this week and do some (eek) exercise!

paranormal weight room

And that’s gonna be REALLY tough because, as hinted at in last week’s post, we’ve just welcomed a new addition to the 50by60 household — meet PUMPKIN!

pumpkin princess

As you can see, Pumpkin, a black cat with gorgeous orange eyes (which you can’t see because, like all cats, she’s usually asleep) is getting into the Hallowe’en spirit by making herself comfortable on the shelf directly above the Memorial Shelf, where we keep the mementos of our beloved previous cat, +Princess+, who perished just a year ago yesterday.

Princess 3

And just to make it sadder, +Princess+ died on Mr. 50by60’s birthday last year.

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THIS year, he had to go to the dentist and get a filling and a crown. Hmm — maybe next year we should plan something a tad more cheerful!

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Anyway, we miss +Miss Princess+, so we’re thrilled to welcome Miss Pumpkin to take her place in our home (although of course, never in our hearts!). Our other cat, Buddy, is still debating about how HE feels about it!

new kitten

However, I’ve found a little extra food in his bowl makes him calm down about the whole situation. That works for humans too — which is probably why my weight is going UP rather than DOWN! You may have noticed we’ve had a couple of wildfires out here in So Cal (and No Cal) over the past few, um, weeks? (I’ve lost track.)

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Pretty much every morning over the past couple of weeks, we’ve awakened to yet another round of smoke, ashes, high winds, and red fonts on the Drudge Report. This morning’s outbreak is just past Simi Valley, near the Reagan Library — AND not too far from my favorite 24 Hour Fitness Location!

24hrpool

YES, the one with the pool!!

So best wishes to all the beleaguered firefighters who are definitely being stretched thin! Which makes my efforts to get thin seem kinda unimportant, in the grand scheme of things, right? Still, I haven’t given up hope! At some point (if Pumpkin lets me)…

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…I’ll stand up, grab my water bottle (and my face mask), and take a nice long walk through the beautiful Southern California autumn!

happy fall so cal

Well, that’s it!

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Enjoy your week!

Stray Cat Blues!

Oh yeah! Hmm, I seem to be singin’ the blues a lot lately on this blog, don’t I? The Summertime Blues, the Not Enough Quarters for the Washing Machine Blues, and of course, everyone’s favorite, that seemingly never-ending waltz around “Plateau Point!” This week is a little less tragic – I’m down to:

189.0

A miniscule little drop, to be sure, but still, any loss of elevation is welcome (unless you’re on Viagra, I guess?).

Anyway, the “stray cat” of my title song is a cute little black kitten who’s trying to stake out territory in the space between our house and the neighbors, as well as in MY HEART waahhh!!

The thing is, although (of course!) he’s super cute, neither Mr. 50by60 nor our current alpha cat, the Budster, is really ready for a cute new interloper just yet. After all, it’s been less than a year since our beloved Princess went to Kitty Heaven,

taking our hearts with her! And none of us is really quite sure we’re ready to reclaim our hearts from way up there and start from scratch (literally – I mean, it’s a cat!) with a new furry friend. But like all good salespeople, Li’l Blackie hasn’t given up yet!

And to be honest, he’s already wormed his way into — if not my heart, at least into that vast Catholic guilt complex inside my head.

I’ve been buying extra cat food and leaving it out between the houses for him, as well as lying awake at night, worrying that he’ll be too cold out there. “It’s 50 degrees!!! Won’t he freeze to death?”

So we’ll see what happens. If nothing else, all this stress should result in a nice, juicy weight loss next week! By which time, by the by, and getting back to the “Washing Machine Blues,” we may just have a brand new washing machine, y’all!!!

Stay tuned — I’ll update you next week on the cats, the major appliances, and of course, the continuing saga of The Weight!!

Friday Five: Four things NOT to say when someone’s pet dies, and one thing you should ALWAYS say!

Happy Friday, everyone! Well, if you remember Monday’s post, it hasn’t been a very happy week for us. We’re getting better, though we’ll always miss our little Princess.

Princess 3

And most of the people we’ve told about our grief have been very comforting. However, there’s always a few whose “words of comfort” cause more pain than if they’d just zipped their lips! So for our Friday Five, let me share with you four things you should NOT say to a grieving pet owner – plus one thing you that’s ALWAYS OK to say!

  1. Trivializing your loss: “Too bad, but can’t you just go to the animal shelter and get another one? There’s thousands of ’em out there who need good homes.”

    Um, yeah, that’s true. And maybe when some time goes by, we’ll consider doing that very thing.

    Right now, though, the cat we ALREADY adopted, and have loved for over 13 years, has left us, and we’re very sad about that. Would you say the same thing to someone who’d just lost their grandfather, child, or spouse?
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  2. More trivializing: “It’s just a cat (or dog, or horse, or whatever) – what’s the big deal?”

    The “big deal” is it’s a living creature we’ve spent time with EVERY DAY for the past 13+ years, and we’ll miss her.
    idiot

  1. Second-guessing: “Are you sure you have to put her to sleep? I heard about someone whose cat had the same thing and they took her to a Mexican vet who fixed her right up!”

    Uh, yeah, sure … let’s put our sick cat in the car, and drive for several hours across the border into a country we’re really not that familiar with, and see if we can find a vet who knows how to CURE CANCER … yeah …
    that should end well

  1. Glurging them to death: Look, I get it. The “Rainbow Bridge” poem is sweet (I guess). And I’m sure it’s helped a lot of people. However, I worry that maybe some of the pets I’ve accidentally killed, like little Harlan Ellison, the hamster I squished with my mattress when I was moving into my new apartment, might not be so thrilled to see me. And frankly, a little glurge goes a long way with me.
    rainbow
    Also, while I, like Abbot Tryphon at Ancient Faith Radio, do hope that our afterlife will include our beloved animals, that “Rainbow Bridge” thing seems a bit too New Age-y for my Eastern Christian sensibilities. What I’m trying to say is, stop sending me “Rainbow Bridge” poems, pictures, songs, YouTube videos, etc. Please!
    gayley.jpg

And finally, the one thing that’s ALWAYS appropriate to say to someone who’s grieving for their pet (or anyone else):

  1. I’m sorry!

    Yes, just a simple expression of sympathy that’s never out of line and always appreciated!

    Look, I get it – not everyone has pets, so not everyone understands how a person can grieve over “just a pet.” But if you care about that person, you can express sympathy for them, even if you don’t understand their feelings, right? So just follow the lead of the Doctor, and you’ll do fine!

That’s your Friday Five, everyone! Monday I’ll be back with a weigh-in, and maybe some more bike stuff. Meantime, have a great weekend!

Friday doc

No weigh-in today — just a sad goodbye to a good friend

I was debating whether to do a weigh-in today or not. FWIW, I’ve been dutifully keeping track of it every day. It’s been relatively stable, so I’m sure it would have been a decent weigh-in.

However, today is not an ordinary Monday. It’s the saddest Monday we’ve had so far, here in the 50by60 household.

You see, last week, we finally made the decision to have our sweet 13-year-old cat Princess, who’s been suffering from nasal cancer, put out of her misery.

Princess 2

That’ll happen at around 3:00 this afternoon. And we’ve been really sad all week, counting down the days … the hours … and probably the minutes, later today. (Oh, and it’s also sad because it’s Mr. 50by60’s birthday today — not his most fun birthday, that’s for sure!)

And even though we know it’s the right decision, that doesn’t make it any easier. So — decision made — no weigh-in today. Just a photo of our pretty cat, who sometimes liked to sit on the desk next to me as I was writing these posts…

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…along with a prayer that God will grant her a peaceful, painless end to her life.

And that someday we’ll see her again, under better circumstances.

So long, Princess. Thanks for taking such good care of us both, all these years. Good girl!

Princess 3

 

 

Friday Five: Where’s my parade??

Well, it’s been a fun week! Thanks to everyone who cheered me on and helped me along the way!

However, now that I’ve reached my goal weight (the FIRST goal, that is — I’ll be setting a new one soon!), I realized that, fat or thin, there are a few things that won’t change — even though I kinda hoped they would!

  1. Most people don’t notice — or care — as much about your weight as you do. Sure, there are always a few people around you in your day-to-day life — your spouse, your kids, your fellow employees, etc. — who are aware of your weight challenges. But there’s a whole lot more people who don’t know, or care, that you used to be fat and now you’re slightly less fat. The cashier at the grocery store doesn’t really care that you’re buying more fruits and veggies and fewer giant bags of Nacho Cheese Doritos. All she wants is to go home and soak her feet and binge-watch “Downton Abbey” for the hundredth time. So keep your ego in check.
    dog.jpg
  2. Clothes shopping is easier in some ways, tougher in others. I used to dream about getting thin enough to fit into a beautiful dress that would make me look like a princess. Well, guess what? Fat or thin, you can’t find dresses like that unless you’re currently residing in a palace and/or playing the part of someone who lives in a palace. The fashion these days seems to be sleeveless dresses that show off your underarms, and IMHO that’s not a good look for ANYONE. Also, swimsuits still suck, even in “normal” sizes. There are very few women who don’t feel like “Cathy” when trying on swimsuits.
    cathy.jpg
  3. No one will read your blog. OK, that’s not fair. YOU’RE not “nobody,” and you’re reading my blog! And believe me, I appreciate it! What I mean, though, is if you haven’t become a major star in the blogging firmament by the time you hit your goal weight, you probably won’t afterwards. I’m still gonna keep blogging though, since it seems to be an important factor in keeping me honest about my weight-crackin’ efforts (“Hmm, I’d really like to eat that second donut, but tomorrow’s ‘Rhymin’ Weigh-in Day’ on the blog, so I better not. Pass the celery, please!”).
    blogging is hard
  4. Crappy stuff still needs to be done and you’re the one who has to do them. For example, our sweet cat Princess had to go to the vet this week, which meant getting her into her carrier (helpful hint: “mrrOWW!!” means “NO WAY!!” in Cat-ese), then I drove her to the vet, which is about 5 miles and 5,000,000 angry “mrrOWWs” away (no matter how loud you turn up the radio), paying the vet bill, and driving her home again (repeat angry “mrrOWWs”). Cats don’t care if you’re fat or thin. They just want out out out NOW!!!
    cat.jpg
  5. Half the people in the world will hate you. I don’t write about politics or religion in this blog (though at some point I should probably mention that my faith in God was a MAJOR part of my motivation to stay on the diet, so thanks and yay, God!). Still, if you’re a normal person trying to live your life in this beautiful country we call America, you probably know that, no matter what your political views are, about half the country despises you and wishes bad things would happen to you. I won’t go into detail, but rest assured, those dirty looks you were getting at Starbucks this morning when you were reading “National Review,” or at Dunkin’ Donuts when you were perusing the op-ed pages of the “New York Times,” had NOTHING to do with your weight. Isn’t that a relief?
    libs

So there you go, five things that won’t really change a whole lot once you’ve reached your goal weight! Does that mean you shouldn’t try? Heck no! There are a lot of things that do change, for the better, and I’ll write about those next Friday. If I remember. Remind me, will you? Thanks, and have a great weekend!!

weekend

The “Saturday Some” — a new thing, kinda sorta

If you’re a regular follower of this blog, you may have wondered what happened to my regular “Friday Five” post.

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Yeah … well, the long answer is, “It was sunny and bright, so I decided to go out for a long drive to a wonderful place I haven’t visited for quite a while,” and the short answer is, “I got lazy,” so feel free to take your pick.

Anyway, in lieu of the “Friday Five,” let me offer the very first “Saturday Some,” which is basically just a bunch of stuff I’m rambling about, off the top of my head. Plus memes! Lots and lots of memes!

memes.jpg

Anyway, I’ve been doing a lot more walking lately, and really enjoying it, too. Now that the weather’s getting nice and hot, though, I may have to go back to the gym and hop back on the treadmill. Which doesn’t particularly bother me. As I’ve said before, I do enjoy the video treadmills at Anytime Fitness (AF).

However, it does bother me in the sense that, given a choice, I’d MUCH rather do my walking outdoors. There are so many great places to walk in Southern California (yes, people actually DO walk in L.A.!) that I hate to give that up.

But once the temps start climbing up above, oh, 85 or so, it’s either the treadmill or the pool. And I do love me that 24 Hour Fitness pool, too, as you may recall!

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Still, it’ll probably be the AF treadmill more often than the pool, mainly because it’s much closer to home, and also right next door to a Ralphs. Which means I can do a couple of miles on the treadmill, then trundle over to the grocery store and do ANOTHER half-mile (I measured it!) in the store.

(And get cat treats, of course. That’s the main reason humans go to the store, according to certain purrsons.)

cat.jpg

Where was I? Oh, yeah, walking! And walking, although it probably doesn’t burn anywhere near as many calories as, say, kickboxing or weightlifting, if you do it every day … or every other day … or at least on a fairly regular basis, you’ll burn a few calories. Even if you can only walk around the block a couple of times, that’s some quality exercise there, my friend.

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More importantly, you’ll relax and enjoy life a little bit more. There’s just something about seeing the world at two or three miles an hour that makes everything else seem oh, so right. Except maybe your knees, if you have arthritis. Which I do. And I have to admit, my knees do get a bit sore the day after a really long, satisfying walk.

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Still, it’s the price I pay for staying in such fabulous shape! And we’ll find out how that translates into actual weight loss on Monday. Hope you’ll join me then! Meanwhile, have a GRRRREAT rest of your weekend!

(unused WordPress Daily Prompt: all of them! read here if you’re interested in some kinda “inside baseball” stuff!)

 

 

 

Rhymin’ Weekly Weigh-In: Lazy Monday edition!

OK, OK, I know you’re in a big rush to find out what my weight is this morning. I get it. Everyone’s in a big rush this morning.

Our cat, Princess, is extremely impatient (and with good reason!) because her servant-human (aka my husband) had the colossal nerve to sleep a few extra minutes and thus deprive her of her morning shower. (Why yes, we give our cats showers. Doesn’t everyone?)

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Anyway, you can untwist your panties now, Aunt Tilly, ’cause here we go!

200.0
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So, STILL not “Milestone Monday,” but with any luck, it’ll happen … NEXT week!

Meanwhile, relax, and remember:

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Rhymin’ Weekly Weigh-in: I wanna be the Bob Ross of something!

Well, good morning, everyone. Happy Monday! Let’s get right to the Rhymin’ Weekly Weigh-in, shall we? Ready? Here we go!

204.0
scales
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All right!! I’m pretty happy about that. See, last week I stumbled across this YouTube video by this guy named Steve Gamelin, who’s perfected a method of baking bread called “No-Knead Turbo Bread.”

Now Steve G.’s not the only one who has videos about this concept, but in our nonstop, 24/7, media-saturated world, it’s all about image, amiright? And the thing about Steve G. is, he’s basically the Bob Ross of bread baking!

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And as soon as I watched one of Steve G.’s laid-back, super-comfy bread baking videos, my imagination was stimulated: “Hey,  *I* could do that!” So I rushed out to the grocery store, bought a big sack of King Arthur Flour and some yeast, and got to work. And it was FABULOUS! The best loaf of bread I’d baked in … oh, let’s see … at least five years (which was the last time I baked bread, so logically speaking, that works, right?).

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Unfortunately, it was so good that I wound up eating the whole thing myself over a couple of days. And frankly, I worried that my weight would go up today. But all’s well that ends well! My weight is down (at least a little), a fresh loaf is in the works, and this time I’ll share it with my husband. (Maybe!)

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Just watch your hands – Bread Kitty’s very protective!

That’s it – have a great day, everyone! Thanks for reading!

Friday Five: Way too many cat memes

Welp, good morning, all, and happy Friday, for those of you who actually work for a living!

You know, I got up this morning and briefly considered getting a few things done before I wrote my post. Then I realized that if I did all of them, I probably wouldn’t write this till around, oh, I dunno, midnight. So I decided to simplify my life and just get this done first.

I’m sure you’ll appreciate the effort it took me to postpone:

  1. Making breakfast. Actually, making breakfast is the easiest part of my day. My hubby rarely wants anything more substantial than a Trader Joe’s cereal bar and a glass of water. Occasionally I’ll surprise him with some bacon and eggs (mainly when I want some too), but for the most part, breakfast is easy to postpone.
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  2. Cat maintenance. This one includes feeding them, letting them out the back door, letting them back in (we have a cat flap, but they like that personal service), checking the litter boxes, checking the treat stations, flea combing, catnip application, peacock feather waving, and other miscellaneous attentions as required. I’ve done a couple of them already (I have to, or they’ll beat me up), but at the moment they’re sleeping off the catnip, so I’ve got a little window of time.
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  3. Shoe shopping. Bet you didn’t see that one coming, did you? Normally I buy my shoes, clothes, books, and other necessities of life online, as you do. However, I was looking at some Skechers “Go Walk” shoes on Amazon last night, and they looked really comfy. However, I realized from bitter experience that I probably should buy at least one pair in (shudder) an actual store, just to make sure they’re as comfy as they look in the photos. I’ve been burned before. (Literally as well as figuratively – I’m not that handy around the stove.)
    266214ed08e5cfe2f70839a5d7bfec58--shoes-on-sale-shoe-sale

  4. Laundry. I’m actually pretty much caught up on the actual human being laundry. This goes back to #2, because most of the laundry I need to do now involves the various things the cats sleep, shed, sneeze, and deposit their various and sundry bodily fluids on. Every piece of clothing I own, if it were sentient, should tremble in the fearful knowledge that it could wind up as a cat bed. Fortunately, clothing isn’t sentient, although who knows? It’s a funny ol’ world.
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  5. Transcribing. Heh … yeah, this is my ACTUAL WORK that I am theoretically supposed to be doing when I’m home, to make money. You know, money really helps vis-a-vis cat stuff, shoes, and future cat beds aka clothing. I suppose I could ask Purina or Friskies (are they even different companies? who knows these days) if they’d throw me some free cat treats in exchange for mentioning them in my wildly popular blog, but that’s probably not gonna happen any time soon. (If it does, I’ll let you know.)
    cat-blogger

So once I’ve finished writing this post, and applying all the appropriate memes and formatting, I guess I’ll pick one of these things to get done. Probably breakfast, ’cause I’m hungry.

Unless, of course, the cats wake up first.

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Rhymin’ Weekly Weigh-In, Humble-bragging edition!

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Let’s be candid, shall we? I don’t always take my own advice. (Yeah, I know, shocking, right?)

For example, I’m always pushing the excellent weigh-in strategy recommended by Jay over at aworkoutroutine.com, about weighing yourself every day, then using the *average* for the week for your weekly weigh-in.

And it’s a great idea! It makes total sense. And I actually do keep a running total in an Excel document, so I’m not completing ignoring that very sensible advice.

However, for some reason, when I do these Monday weigh-ins here on the blog, I feel like I should share the actual weight from this morning, rather than the average from the previous week. The culprit, as you may have guessed from the post title, is my deplorable need to humble-brag.

Humble-bragging, in case you’re not a hep cat, up with the pop culture and the things kids say these days, is defined by that erudite source of wordology, the Urban Dictionary, as:

Subtly letting others know about how fantastic your life is while undercutting it with a bit of self-effacing humor or “woe is me” gloss.

Uggggh just ate about fifteen piece of chocolate gotta learn to control myself when flying first class or they’ll cancel my modelling contract LOL :p #humblebrag

In my case, the humble-bragging usually consists of: “Wow, I had a donut at church, and then we had a potluck and I had to eat some of the Key Lime pie I baked, because it was so yummy! Sure hope my weight goes down anyway! Here goes!” thus virtue-signalling to you, the loyal reader, that:

  1. I went to church yesterday. I’m so good!
  2. I baked a Key Lime pie. I’m so good!
  3. I’m being totally honest about my weight, whether it’s up or down. I’m so good!

See what I mean? And not only that, I’m such a humble-braggart that I’m letting you in on the secret of what I’m doing!

stinker

Well, all this is wasting your valuable time (I’m concerned about your time! I’m so good!), so without further ado, let’s cut to the chase and get to what you came here for: the increasingly famous Rhymin’ Weekly Weigh-In! Ready? Here we go!!

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208.6
Do the Little Kicks!
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Not too shabby! See what a little humility can do for you, kids? It can LITERALLY make you lose weight! Well, okay, figuratively, then. At least, it can affect your figure. What I mean to say is–

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Oh, sorry about that, Mittens! Yeah, I’m done. Have a great week, everyone!