Sunday, April 06, 2014

Signing off ... Visit the archives

I'm happy & journey continues.
When I started this blog on August 5, 2006, I never thought it would still be around in 2014. In blog years, this thing is a dinosaur! 

As you may have noticed, there hasn't been any new blog posts for several months -- but I was a bad blogger and didn't actually tell you that I was going to take a break from regular updates. So I'll tell you now. I'm taking a break. 

I'm 6.5 years out from my RNY weight loss surgery and I am a success in maintaining my new found healthy lifestyle. I owe my success in large part to this blog. It has made me accountable to myself and my readers, but also it has allowed me to meet so many amazing people who rally together in the WLS community to support and cheer on one another. 

As you know (from the post below this one), I have written a book about my experiences in the weight loss surgery community. Journey to a Healthier Me: A travel guide to physical & emotional well-being after weight loss surgery is on sale at Amazon and some local bookstores - or so I've been told. I hope you buy a copy and tell me what you think. (If you want an autographed copy, just let me know and we can make that happen!)

Even though I don't plan to write more updates here, I will continue to maintain the site and let the archives stand as-is. There is a ton of information, research, resources, and my fair share of ramblings here for you to browse through. Check the list of links on the right column for some of the most popular blog posts. And don't forget to visit the Recipe Index - lots of great yumminess there! If you're a WLS Support Group Leader, please visit the page with topic ideas and links to resources. 

I'm always available by email, feel free to reach out to me anytime. 

For those who might be interested in following my quest for creative inspiration, I invite you to check out my newly-revived blog called {CREATE}. It's a work in progress, but it should be fun. 

If I can leave you with one piece of advice it is this: Celebrate your victories! No matter how big or how small the goals might be, take time to pat yourself on the back for them all - reward yourself! And whenever you achieve a goal, set a new one. And lastly, make a list of your WOW Moments. 

Enjoy your journey to better health. Stop along the way and enjoy the good life and don't get too bogged down in set backs, hurdles, or sharp curves ... just keep moving and you'll be a great success!


Monday, October 07, 2013

The Book: Journey to a Healthier Me

For many of you, this might be old news. But I wanted to include a new blog post about my book so new readers can easily find it. 

It only took me three years of writing and editing and fussing and rewriting... but I achieved a dream the day my book was finally published. Many of the chapters in the book are based on posts here from my blog. I'm approaching the six-year post-op milestone in my life and I'm so proud of all I've accomplished since my weight loss surgery. This book was a huge one on the list. 

Buy Journey to a Healthier Me on Amazon, or in some local bookstores. 

Table of Contents:
  1. The story of Pam's journey
  2. Is Surgery Right for You?
  3. Preparing for Surgery
  4. Life after surgery
  5. Your Altered Body
  6. The Rules have a Reason
  7. Nutritional Needs - Macronutrients
  8. Nutritional Needs - Micronutrients
  9. Changing your mind
  10. Goals & Triumphs
  11. When things get hard
  12. Reference and Resources 

Thank you to those who have already bought a copy of my book. If you've read it, please go to Amazon and leave a comment or review. Amazon gives higher search result ranking to books with more reviews, so please help others find this resource too. 

Monday, September 09, 2013

Spicy Corn on the Cob

It's corn-on-the-cob season and I have always loved a good ear of corn with butter and salt. But recently I had roasted corn at a festival and the corn came sprinkled with a spice mix that the vendor called "Shucks" mix (i.e.: shucking corn) and Parmesan cheese along with the copious amounts of melted butter. Ever since that festival a few weeks ago, I've been playing with spice combinations and searching the web for recipes. Finally today, I've found the right combo and you're going to love this!

Corn-on-the-Cob Spice Mix
(I used a regular spoon from the silverware drawer, not measuring spoons... so these "measurements" are sort of approximate.)

3 spoons - Lawry's Season Salt
2 spoons - Garlic Herb Seasoning (similar to this variety of Mrs. Dash)
1 spoon - Garlic Powder (not garlic salt!)
1/2 spoon - ground Red Pepper powder (adjust to your own taste, this gives it a kick!)
1 spoon - Paprika

Mix together and put into a shaker bottle. Sprinkle on buttered corn then add a generous sprinkle of Parmesan cheese. Enjoy!

One more tip.... how to cook corn-on-the-cob.  I use to shuck the corn and boil it. But ever since I saw this video on YouTube, I don't use any other method. Just throw the whole cob - husks and all - into the microwave for 4 minutes. Don't attempt to clean up the corn before putting it in. If the hairs are really long, sometimes I'll chop them off with kitchen shears, but I usually don't bother.

When your 4 minutes is up, take it out with a hot pad and cut off the "stem end" and then just shake out the cob from the husk. Easy! Watch the video, this guy is so cute!

Friday, July 12, 2013

Summer Recipes

When the sun is high in the sky and the temperature is rising, I just don't feel like cooking. I want summer food! Usually that's something simple and cool like salad or a wrap sandwich or a big ole pile of fruit. I thought I'd share some of my favorite summertime recipes today.

Chicken Salad -- delicious with rotiserie chicken, grapes and celery. I love this on a bed or mixed salad greens and slices of fresh tomato

Tortilla Pizza -- So many this isn't just for summertime but I love how quick and easy these Tortilla Pizzas are - and once you get going on these, the topping choices are endless! They work great by using the round fajita shells, or you can use the FlatOut Bread for something a bit more sturdy.

Fruit Smoothies -- nothing like a healthy protein smoothie on a hot summer day. The Fuzzy Navel is a favorite. Or my go-to option is just banana & strawberries.

Protein Popsicles -- Yes, we all need a sweet frozen treat. Here's a recipe for Protein Fruit Popsicles. Or how about Frozen Chocolate Covered Bananas? I especially love my Blackberry Yogurt Protein Popsicles.

Salads -- I love this Crunchy Asian Coleslaw and it makes a great dish to pass for picnics. Or you could do some Greek Yogurt Coleslaw for some added protein.

Fruit Jello Bars -- and who doesn't love Jello for a cool summer treat? These are a great hit at picnics too. They're like finger Jello for adults.

For more food ideas you can always check out my Recipe Index for a full list of all the recipes here on my blog.


Friday, July 05, 2013

Enjoying Summer as a WLS Patient

For the past 12 years, or so, I have been part of the planning (and graphic design) of a golf outing that happens in June every year. It's turned into a huge event that takes a lot of work. Because of the amount of work that I put into being a part of that planning committee, I typically lose out on the first part of my summer. June is shot and summer begins in July. At least the "relax at the beach or go on vacation" part of summer. 

So here it is the July 4th weekend and I'm finally feeling like summer has arrived for me. Lately I've been thinking about how my life is different after WLS compared to how it is now. 

I'm usually stuck being the camera, so having photos of me at the golf outing is not normal.
Here I am in 2006, a year before my surgery and in 2011, four years after my WLS. 

Before my weight loss, the golf outing was a major ordeal. A 14-16 hour day on my feet, in the hot sun, running around handling committee details where I was needed -- it took me days to recover and get my energy back. This year's outing was the same grueling routine but I was back to normal the day after the outing. Of course, the 60-70 hour workweeks leading up to the outing itself contributes to the overall exhaustion, so it's not just a one day thing. 

But it's officially my summer now and I'm in full blown SUMMER mode! I have a goal of being at the beach or in the water as much as possible. In fact, this weekend I'll be joining my family at the campground where apparently they are planning to go tubing down the river. I went kayaking last summer and I am itching to go again. My favorite beaches are calling me, as usual. And I'd like to take a couple long weekend mini-vacations to the west side of Michigan to enjoy the shoreline there. 

Since losing 100 pounds of excess weight, I'm more active, obviously. But I'm also more open minded about adventures and trying new things. I have more friends and enjoy doing things with them that I wouldn't have done 6 summers ago. But, of course, I didn't need to wait until I lost 100 pounds to do all this. I was moderately active and outgoing before my surgery... it's just that now I'm more apt to jump in the car and go do whatever I want without worrying about how much energy it would take to accomplish. 

So I'm off to enjoy a beautiful holiday weekend in the sun. What's your favorite thing to do since you had WLS? 


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