Tuesday, February 21, 2012


Hubby and I used to be terrible eaters.  We were young, healthy, childless, broke, and clueless about how to feed ourselves.  We would go to the Hostess thrift store and stock up on old white bread, Twinkies, Susy-Qs, and the like.  We would drink Coke by the caseful, because it was forever on super sale prices.  We had a bowl of candy-filled ice cream every night before bed.  We ate a ton of canned soup and frozen salisbury steak.

Today, we eat home-cooked meals every day.  Salisbury steak is a bad word around here. We eat ice cream at birthdays, but rarely anytime else.  I don't know the last time I've eaten a Twinkie.  I only drink water and milk, except when we eat out.  Then I get a Sprite.  We only eat whole wheat.

We didn't get here overnight.

It was a whole bunch of little steps over the last 17 years.  Take ice cream.

A huge bowl of Chocolate Moose Tracks ice cream every single night before bed.  At some point I realized that I was getting older, not the athletic hottie that I used to be.  I decided to change the ice cream.  I went to plain chocolate or vanilla ice cream with fruit on top.  Bananas, strawberries, and raisins were my new candy.  (Yes, raisins.  It makes Hubby gag to even contemplate, but I love them on ice cream.  Don't judge until you've tried it!)

For a few years, that is how things went.

One year for Lent I gave up all snacking after dinner.  I lost 5 pounds in one week.  Not good.  (For me, at that time, it wasn't.) 

So, I put snacking back on the menu, but left out the ice cream.  Throughout Lent, I had grapes or a nectarine.  After Lent I would have microwave popcorn or peanut M&Ms.

Then I got this pre-Lupus thing.  My activity level dropped off, and I realized I was having an after-dinner snack out of habit.  I wasn't even hungry.  I stopped eating after dinner.  I haven't lost a pound, but I haven't gained any, either. 

So, I went from eating a huge bowl of calorie- and fat-filled ice cream every night to not eating any snacks at all.  Sure, it took many, many years.  But here I am.  And I don't feel deprived in the least.

Baby steps.

It is wonderful to have large, long-range goals.  But in order to reach them, you must have small, attainable, measurable goals. 

I'm all about baby steps.  Seeing progress and being happy with it.

Learning not the whole alphabet, but the first letter of your name.

Learning not the entire addition chart, but that 4+1=5. 

Not being outgoing, but having the courage to purchase a gallon of milk all alone.

Not mowing the whole yard, but being brave enough to take care of the flat field on the side of the house.

Not swimming a lap of the pool, but putting your head under water to blow bubbles.

Not being the neatest person in the world, but remembering to put your soccer cleats where they go.

Not having the cleanest house, but having a beautiful-looking linen closet.
Last week's project.  Totally makes me happy!

Not knowing how to grow and keep every vegetable known to man, but learning how to can green beans.

Progress.  Baby steps towards that big goal.  Moments to celebrate and be happy with what you've done and learned. 

Helloooooo wood grain!  Nice to finally meet you!  Not done, but after going through 6 steel wool pads, one can of mineral spirits, a fourth of a can of stripper, a pair of industrial gloves, and several hours of work, we are seeing what our door may look like in the end.  The other four doors, two windows, and baseboards will get done.  But for now, I'm happy.  Progress.

Baby steps.  Celebration.  Happiness.  Contentment.

Have a lovely day!

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