Monday, January 23, 2012

I've been neglectful!

Wow, I forget I have this blog. I guess that makes me a lame blogger. I write a lot in my head, but most of the time that is where it stays. I have FB and Pinterest to keep me MORE than distracted from what I need to do. But as Abby-the-dog and I were walking today, I thought about it. I wondered what I had written about the last time I was here. Moscow, of course. I read back through it with tears in my eyes. Still miss that place. Bartlesville is feeling a little less weird, but if given the choice, I would not be here. I often wonder, if we had the chance to go back, would we find it different. Certainly, the people whom we knew there have changed....I probably only know 5 or 6 people who still live there. There are LOTS of new places....American places....Wendy's, and Chili's to name a couple. I think that would make it less charming. But I sure did miss those touches of home when I was there. Maybe if I went back I would try to be less American and more Russian. I would learn the language, make more Russian friends. Maybe, maybe not.......

Anyway, that is not the reason I got on this blog today! I felt the need to journal about quitting Weight Watchers. Not that I don't think it is a wonderful program because I do. They try very hard to reach people needing help. They have many, MANY ways to support you. But I realize, after 1 1/2 years and losing absolutely no weight that they are no longer for me. Lord knows I know how to lose weight....I've done it many times! Calories in, calories out. Exercise, eat moderately, exercise, drink water, exercise. I get it. And I'm also at the age where the shame of facing the scale, and the leader, doesn't motivate me. I just don't go to the meeting. I even bought a monthly pass, so I pay whether I go or not, so what? Even that is not motivation. I finally came to the realization that all of that not only doesn't motivate me these days, it stresses me. I need to find that motivation within. I need to be happy how I am. I am really not that overweight (20 or 30 lbs, not 100.) My health is good. I am happy. I have great friends, a wonderful husband, happy kids, fabulous family. So I've decided to just let go of the stress of trying to diet. Does that mean I won't watch what I eat and not exercise....quite the opposite. I will eat HEALTHY and EXERCISE. Will I lose weight? Who knows and who cares? I feel like the weight of the world is off my shoulders for now (pun intended.) If you are reading this....I'll keep you posted!

Tuesday, April 12, 2011

Happy (?) Anniversary

No, I'm not talking about Harry and I. We are happy (most days) and it will be THIRTY years for us this September. If I'm not happy with him now, I figure I never will be! And I've almost got him trained. He would say the same about me!! Anyway....I digress.

It is hard for me to believe but a year ago the end of this month, on April 29, we flew back to the US from Russia, for good. Wow, a year. That seems like a long time when I say it out loud. And most days I still miss Moscow more than I can bear. Even after a year.

In some respects being here has it's advantages of course. I love that my dad & Maxine are so close. They can drop by or meet us for dinner, or we can go over to Ponca City. I love it that Meghan and Jacob are a mere 5-hour-drive away. If I'm needed for wedding plans I'm there. I love it that Harry's mom and 2 of his sisters are in OKC, just a few hours down the road. The grocery store is easy. Driving is easy. I love my house. Can I say it again....I.LOVE.MY.HOUSE.

I remember the days when I could NOT wait to have a reason to leave Russia. Our first trip out was to Rome. Our former priest and friend, and my boss, was on Sabbatical in Rome. He would be available to tour us around a bit. I was so excited! I loved every minute of our trip. Right up until we were sitting at the airport. Then I cried like a baby. I didn't WANT to go back to Moscow. Rome had been warm and sunny and friendly. Moscow was going to be cold and dreary and unfriendly (especially passport control!) Harry would be going back to Naryan Mar and I would once again be alone during the long week. But it was more than that. It didn't feel like home yet. Far from it. We had only been there since mid-January. It still felt weird and uncomfortable.

But something happened over the years. It became home. I remember when I had my "passport issue" (a long story and written about earlier in this blog) and I had to go back to Houston for almost a month. I felt out of place in the US, and mind you, this was after I had been thrown out of the country! But somehow, it was still home. Of course, Harry was there, Abby was there, friends were there. It felt like home! Blake Shelton had a song out at that time called "I Wanna Go Home." It became my anthem! I always said Russia gets under your skin and into your heart. And by then, it was clearly in my heart.

People often say, what did you like so much about Russia. It is so hard to tell people who have never lived there what it is about the place. Because on the surface, it seems like there is not much to like!! It's cold a lot of the year, it appears unfriendly most of the time, it's dirty and gray. It's a big, gritty city. But live there a while, and you begin to see beneath the surface, to the real heart of the city, the people.....both natives and people who choose to live there. The summer comes and you see the beauty of a city that has been there for 865 years! It suddenly becomes an amazing place to live.

Another friend said Russia was one of those postings where you cried because you had to go, and then you cried because you had to leave. No truer words were ever spoken!

Friday, April 8, 2011

How's that workout going? was HARD! There are many reasons. I ate half a bag of peanut M&Ms last night. I thought they would help me feel better. Sometimes you just need comfort food (that thought is the reason I struggle with weight, of course.) About 2:30am, my stomach decided it was payback time. It tortured me for a couple of hours, then when I was just good and asleep, the damn alarm went off. Because my tummy was still rumbly, I ate no breakfast, but I did drink a yogurt drink. So, I was tired, feeling not quite myself, my body didn't have much fuel. I couldn't run the last 1.5 minutes. But I did a fast walk. Do I consider that failure? Nope. Will I get back on the treadmill Monday? Yep. And repeat week 2. Also not considered failure in my book. I'm old, I'm overweight, I've never run in my life. I WANT this for myself. One of the ladies at WW yesterday said that running on the treadmill wasn't as hard (agreed) as running outside because the machine did all the work for you. Excuse me, if I'm not doing at least some of the work, why am I sweating down to my panties and out of breath? I disagree with her. And it is so much more than what I was doing that I have that to be proud of. AND I lost 2 pounds. So there!

Friday, April 1, 2011


Week one of c25k complete!! For those that don't know, that stands for Couch to 5 Kilometers. They promise to get me there in 9 weeks. I'm not training for a 5k, let me just state that. I have felt for a long time that there is a runner hidden inside me. I don't know why, I just have. I've never run for any length of time ever in my life. I guess I HOPE there is a runner hidden inside of me. I love to walk. And I think I would love to run. I imagine myself running like a gazelle (abeit a short, fat gazelle.) But I've never had enough (insert every excuse in the book here) to get there. Well, I'm hoping this is my time! I have all the time in the world, I have a treadmill, I have good music on the iPod, I have a plan to follow....oh, and TONS of support on Facebook! It's just amazing. Friends in Moscow are running, some on treadmills, some in SNOW!! I have no excuses left. So....week one down, 8 more to go!!

Friday, February 18, 2011

Another beautiful day! Abby and I head out the door for a walk in the neighborhood. We turn right off of our street....which, despite the fact that is probably the most historic street in Bartlesville, is busy with traffic, especially at this time of the morning. It is bordered by the middle school (I think!) at one end and the high school at the other end. It is also a cut-through between New Bartlesville and Old Bartlesville (where we live.) The largest employer in town (I assume) is ConocoPhillips and their offices are downtown. Hubby walks a mile to work and loves it. But I digress.....

The walk this morning was through an older part of Bartlesville (as I said before.) Their is a mixture of shabby old houses and stately old houses. There are a very few new(er) houses sprinkled in. Fortunately the builders chose to keep with the style of the neighborhood and they are lovely too. I very much enjoy this walk as it goes by some really lovely houses. I just wish people were still there in them! Yes, of course they are inhabited, but I rarely see signs of life in them. No cars in the driveway, no open door letting the sun shine in. I'm sure that many of these people work. I don't work outside of the house anymore. I used to, but 4 1/2 years in Russia (and 4 1/2 years of aging!!) most likely took me out of any job market. That is fine. I really do enjoy my time at home. I just wish all the other women in the neighborhood were home as well!

Thursday, February 17, 2011

Today, it was 109 degrees warmer than it was last Thursday morning. That's right.....last Thursday morning it was MINUS 27 degrees. This afternoon it was 82 degrees. AMAZING! In one week the weather changed drastically. No more snow, warm enough to wear sandals and capris and get my toes done! Woo hoo....I LOVE it! Warm weather makes me ridiculously happy...especially after 26 inches of snow and two weeks of really cold weather.

I know, can you believe I used to live in Russia?? I think the difference is that in Moscow, the weather never stopped anyone or anything. You just dealt with it. No schools closed, city government did not shut down, busses still ran, people still got out and about. Not so in Oklahoma. The place went absolutely nuts. They closed schools for days. It was crazy! I sure hope that is the end of it for awhile.

Tuesday, February 15, 2011

Yesterday was Valentine's Day. It's been a long time since we spent the day of love in the US. My new goal since moving back to the US is to be a better gift-giver/card-sender. So I decided to give Harry a real gift for Valentine's Day. Most often we eat in as the restaurants are so crowded on this day. Sometimes we celebrate before, but as we were busy over the weekend, it didn't happen. So I determined to buy Harry a gift, as well as cook him a dinner he would like. He knew about the dinner, but I managed to keep the gift a complete surprise! So after the dinner (at his request) of chicken fried steak, mashed potatoes and gravy, salad and Texas brownies, I produced the presents and card. I think he was a bit surprised! Mission accomplished!

And what did he get me? A beautiful bracelet....which will come in the next week or two!