Christmas in Pictures

Well, it took longer than I thought, but hopefully now I will be back to regular blogging. Vacation time is awesome, but it can also be busy. I did not have a chance to sit down and write yesterday and for that I apologize. I took a lot of pictures over the holiday, so I am going to inundate you with them now. We watched It’s a Wonderful Life with my in-laws on Christmas day. My father in law and I were the only ones who actually watched the whole movie. Everyone else either went to sleep or sent text messages the whole time while occasionally interjecting “what’s this stupid movie about?” My inner cinephile weeped for the film viewers that Hollywood has created. If something isn’t blowing up every five seconds or if there is more dialogue than the occasional catchphrase then it’s stupid. That’s a soapbox to hop on another day.Santa was very good to me this year. I feel quite blessed. Apparently Santa prefers that I ignore my wife. I got this book that I wanted from Max and Gawain:I added quite a few movies to my Criterion Collection:That picture also features a book that I have been wanting, given to me by my cousin Caitlin (sorry for the blurriness. I did not receive a new camera for Christmas. I did receive money from my parents to go towards a new iPhone, though. I am debating whether to get the phone (which has a very nice camera) or just buy a stand alone camera).

I got several new video games:And the extended edition Lord of the Rings on Blu-ray! You can judge me for this, but I literally started crying a little when I opened that present.

I also got several cds, socks, underwear and two pairs of shoes! I got some new tennis shoes and am looking forward to putting them to use to fulfill one of my New Year’s goals (more on that tomorrow).

I was most proud of what I got in my stockings. I have been telling all of my family members that I am trying to eat healthier and I got this in my stocking:Awesome, right? I will have healthy snacks for a while to come.

On the Monday after Christmas we drove down to Nikki’s grandmother’s house, or my health battleground. I was seriously worried about this because Nikki’s grandmother always cooks great, fatty, Southern food. My true test was about to come.

On the trip down I realized that it is very hard to eat/drink healthy while on the road. Since I have been off of soft drinks since Thanksgiving I found out two things on this trip:This drink is very tasty. I don’t know a lot about the nutrition of this drink, because I did notice sugar on the ingredients list. But I also noticed a lot of good wholesome ingredients and vitamins that are essential, so I think I did alright. Let me know if I’m wrong.This drink, on the other hand, is disgusting. It’s bottle may be jaunty, but it’s ultimately misleading. Nikki wanted me to tell you that this drink made ME do the lizard seizure face. I did drink it down though. I paid $2 for it, what else could I do?

I did ok at Nikki’s grandmother’s house. I did partake of the food, but only very small portions. I also found that I can eat fairly healthy at a Waffle House. We stayed at a hotel in Meridian with Nikki’s parents and there was a Waffle House next door. Since Nikki’s father wanted a “real breakfast” on Tuesday morning we headed over there. I thought about just getting a single waffle, then I noticed that you could order any of the omelets as an egg white omelet. So, I did. It also came with hashbrowns and four pieces of toast. I ate maybe a fourth of the hashbrowns and two pieces of toast. I felt great about this decision because normally I would get a country fried steak, two eggs, bacon, hashbrowns and a waffle. That is a ridiculous amount of food.

It was Christmas though, and I talked myself into a few indulgences that I do not regret.I had one piece of red velvet cake.Then, on the way home I talked myself into getting a combo meal at Sonic and another large order of tater tots. The reason being that Nikki and I have had to put a lot of our Christmas money into family expenses and not fun things. So I figured I could get one small fun thing. Just like so many of you have told me (and my mom has told me for years) it is not good to reward yourself with food. I felt awful after eating this. Hopefully I will learn from this mistake. I wanted to leave you with a thought I had. The scene above is from The Muppet Christmas Carol. Scrooge has just awoken on Christmas morning and he is walking the streets wishing everyone a Merry Christmas. He comes upon Bunson and Beaker, who play workers for a local charity. Earlier Scrooge had shooed their efforts, but now (his heart being changed) he offered them a large donation. In an act of love and gratitude Beaker offers him his red scarf. Michael Caine’s acting in this scene is phenomenal. You can tell by his words and expressions how truly grateful he is for this small gift. “A gift? A gift…for me?” he asks astonished. I have thought about this moment a lot because Scrooge is seeing in this moment that his change was for the better. He is receiving a reward for his good deed. I think the work of the spirits wasn’t truly finished until this moment, when it came full circle. Scrooge saw that if he gave love, he received it in return. I think this applies to my situation as well. I have seen that when I truly make an effort to eat better and live healthy I receive a reward on the scale or in the way I feel or even act towards others. I realized this when, on Monday after Christmas, I showed a loss on the scale. I was feeling dejected because I had not done great the week before. I had not eaten a lot of fruits and vegetables, but I had restrained myself in all of the meals and ate the best I could. I found that if I put in effort I will receive a reward. I can’t always eat what I want, but as long as I do my best in whatever situation I am in, I will be rewarded.



8 responses

  1. I like that scene in that movie as well and think you are spot on with that interpretation. When you give, you get and all that. The other thing I like about that scene is that it reminds me that it is the thought behind a gift that means the most, not whether it is an expensive gift of not.

  2. We actually talked about the Glaceau products in our class one day. One of the tricks about them is that the bottle holds more than one serving. I think, possibly, it is 2.5 servings. So, when you read the label, I think it says 50 calories, but the whole bottle is actually 50 calories (or however many) x 2.5. And, a serving is one carbohydrate exchange, so a bottle is that times 2.5.

    I don’t drink it every day, but I’ve been carrying around Crystal Light packets that you can dump into a big water bottle. It is probably also better to pick the Vitamin Water flavors that are zero calories. Ultimately, best to skip the chemicals, but sometimes I just crave a little taste of something other than water!

    • Thank you for passing that info along Andie. I pay really close attention to the labels, and did notice that it was 2.5 servings and talked myself into thinking that wasn’t so bad. What exactly is a carbohydrate exchange (excuse my ignorance)?

      I agree with you about craving something other than water. However, it probably would have been better if I planned for the trip and actually carried a water bottle with me. I think we have some of those packets around the house somewhere…

      • No ignorance – I think it is not particularly normal for anyone to be talking about carb exchanges (or protein or fat exchanges, for that matter). Talking about servings, exchanges, or portions is more complicated than just telling you what a typical day of eating looks like for me right now. I’m trying to stay between 60 and 75 grams of carbs each day. One carb exchange = 15 grams of carbohydrates – so I’m aiming for 4 to 5 exchanges.

        Breakfast – 21 to 28 grams of lean/medium lean protein + 1 carb exchange – I have been using a protein shake to get this, but eggs + chicken sausage + veggies works, too.

        Lunch – 21 to 28 grams of lean protein (often a chicken breast or piece of fish) + up to 15 grams of carbs that come from non-starchy veggies (e.g. carrots, tomatoes, greens, broccoli but not potatoes or winter squash). Often a bit of olive oil, but not much more than a teaspoon or two.

        Snack – 7 oz. Greek yogurt (21 g protein + 8 g carb), sometimes with a serving of fruit (1 c. strawberries or 3/4 c. blueberries) AND sometimes with a fat serving (my favorite is 1/4 c. walnuts)

        Dinner – 21 to 28 grams of protein + up to 15 g. carbs from the non-starchy veggies and, finally, an actual ~15 g. serving of carbs, like a small red potato or 1/2 c. of brown rice or 1/4 c. of hummus.

        A slice of basic whole wheat bread is generally about 15 carbs, but eating bread just makes me want MORE, so I try to avoid it still.

        So, if I drank a whole bottle of that Vitamin water, that would be about half of my daily carbohydrate limit BUT would not give me the other nutrients that I’d be getting if I got those carbs from veggies & fruit, for example. Not to mention that drinking my carbs instead of eating them would probably leave me pretty hungry.

        I’m on a pretty low-calorie plan right now, but realistically, when I look at my target weight (which is still in the overweight range per the stupid charts, but which is probably actually realistic for me), I may never get much above 1,400 calories a day. So, 75 g. of carbs may be something of a daily reality for me for a good, long time. Unless it is a super-special occasion and a truly decadent choice, I don’t want to spend those carbs on a drink.

        BTW, a 12 oz. Coke has 39 grams of carbs, which is only a little more than 20 oz. of the Vitamin Water.

        Here endeth my incredibly long comment response. Hope I haven’t annoyed you or come off as too preachy or anything. I am just always surprised at how many little things can add up to sabotage a plan to be healthier, so wanted to share. 🙂 [And, obligatory reminder that I’m not a doctor or nutritionist or expert of any kind …]

  3. Pingback: a gift | Never Truly Prepared

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