About Me

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I am the 45 year old mother of Josie (17), Jacob (14) and Fergus (11) and the wife of Mark. We live in Newhaven on beautiful Phillip Island with various animals including our dog Charlie. I am a recently trained teacher (third year in the classroom) who is busy juggling family, career and my journey to lose weight and be healthy. I have so many balls in the air . . . hopefully, one day I might catch one . . .

Sunday, December 27, 2009

100 day challenge--resumed

Even with Christmas I still managed to do some things positively for my health, both physical and emotional . . . better yet, I managed to document it, so the Challenge is on again for me!

Here is my week

Day 15

Braved the big shops with my daughter, even let her drive (learner drivers . . .eek) and she did a good job. Wasn't as busy as I had feared, thank goodness! It's easy to avoid all the fatty foods on offer at shopping centres as sushi and a skim milk latte are healthy treats I look forward to.

Day 16

Went over my points . . . again! So tried to make the most of it with chickpea and rice patties for dinner while all except vego son had steak on the barbie. Only 2 points a pop, so damage control for me. On Jacob's I put cheese and fried onion and a whole meal roll--the last thing I want is him losing weight!

Day 17

Even though I have a million things to do before Christmas, I read in bed for a couple of hours this morning before getting started and finished Ben Elton's book, Blind Faith. It's a very clever parody of George Orwell's 1984 and a thought-provoking commentary on where we could be heading. Also very funny. I have read a couple of his earlier books that I didn't think quite worked but this one was excellent. And because I've spent some time reading, I felt like I was actually on holidays, inspite of all the Christmas preparation we had to do. Definitely good for the soul!

Day 18--

Got all hands on deck to help with housework. Josie cleaned bathrooms, Jacob swept the deck and tried to find homes for most of the crap thereon, Fergus vaccuumed . . . sort of. Mark was still busy earning a living, so can't complain about that. I burned lots of points racing around all day, I'm sure. Everyone must have thought that Santa was watching, cos there were no complaints!

Day 19--Christmas!!

Food and alchol wise, didn't do fantabulously, but could have been worse. Family wise, we had a lovely day and finished up playing a game of Rapidough with my parents--like Pictionary, but with playdough sculpting. It was really hysterical! I have many happy memories of playing board games on school holidays when I was growing up and I dont' think we make time to do that often enough with our kids. I felt happy that it was a great way to spend Christmas night!

Day 20--

Olive Branch. On Boxing Day about 30 of my relatives descended on Mum and Dad's house for a day of catching up, food and drink and bocce! It had been many, many years since we were all together. Many of my cousins came from Adelaide to be there and are staying in a house around the corner, so we'll have plenty of time to catch up. The really big deal for me was that my brother and his wife and child were there, the first time I'd seen him for nearly six years other than at a funeral when we didn't really speak. He is trying to repair his relationship with my parents after causing them a lot of grief and stress and although on one level I can't believe he can act like nothing has happened, on the other level, I can't see any point in dwelling on the animosity. I didn't know how I would handle the situation but at the moment, it was just easiest to go over and kiss them and say Merry Christmas and try to move forward. I guess that's got to be good for the soul, as well.

Day 21

I invited all Adelaide rellies over for homemade pizza tonight. They were all concerned about me working too hard, but I hardly ever get to see them, so wanted to cook for them. Everyone seemed to enjoy the pizza and it was a lovely eveining. I impressed myself for taking Charlie for a walk after they left at about 10 pm. I am trying to break in my new runners so I can seriously start training for the Channel Challenge.

I am really starting to get back in the zone with weight watchers. 2010, here I come!

Well, it WAS a Merry Christmas!

By some miracle, I got my Christmas shopping finished and got all hands on deck on Christmas Eve for some major housecleaning and somehow on Christmas morning everything came together. We had a wonderful day! Christmas in our house is actually quite a low key affair, but due to the fact that I had done NO preparation, gift shopping etc before school finished on the 18th of December, it was still a rush to get it all done. Mark's family are scattered all around the globe and I have been more or less estranged from my brother for about 6 years, although that's changing now, more on that later. While we usually have a big relative catch up day on Boxing Day, Christmas day itself is generally just the five of us and my parents, otherwise known as "Nanny and Boppy." Over the years we have developed our own Christmas traditions which we love, the routine goes like this: early present opening, followed by Christmas breakfast at my parents' house (only 4 doors away!). Mum invites alot of her friends from the bridge club and neighbours pop in too. After the last breakfasters leave at around midday, we usually go off to have a walk, play with our new pressies or have a sleep until it's time for Christmas dinner . . . at about 5.30! Here are some photos of the days proceedings . . .

Fergus was happy to get a new wetsuit

Jacob was surprised and pleased with his "big" gift

Luckily, he saw the humour in this gift!

Mark and I had agreed not to give each other major presents as we are SUPPOSED to be saving for our trip to Bali at Easter time AND of course I spent too much money on the children as usual. Also, I've been spending alot of money on clothes and shoes and haircuts lately!! Anyway I still got a number of nice gifts like some summer reading, a pair of good runners and this charming little locket . . .

Mark insisted that I open the locket when he gave it to me and when I blushed everyone figured out what was inside! I am flabbergasted to think of him posing for the photo and setting up the camera on autoshoot. Of course, my Mum insisted on having a look, Josie is petrified that she will be scarred for life if she sees what's inside as this photo shows . . .

And here's what all the fuss was about . . . I added a figleaf for modesty's sake but the truly fainthearted might want to stop reading now . . .

Mark says as he's approaching 50, it's all downhill from now on, so he wanted me to have a little something to remember him by! What a dag . . . truly the funniest Christmas present I've ever had!

Here is a nice photo of me with my beautiful older children at Christmas breakfast

And here we all are sitting down to Christmas Dinner. Josie and I always used to make our own "bonbons" but one year I couldn't buy the cracker thing to put in, so instead I got those little blue bags you see on the table. Inside we put a party blower, the beautiful tinsel "hat", a little present and a party popper. This has become another tradition and now we assemble the little bags rather than make bonbons every year.

Fergus likes the party poppers. . .

We finished off the evening with a game of "Rapidough" , which is like Pictionary but you have to make things out of dough. A great game for a variety of ages. I was going to put another picture in, but Blogger doesn't seem to want me to, and this has turned out to be a very long post! Our catch up with relatives (about 30 in all) on Boxing Day went really well too, but more on that later. I suppose I should say something about my weightloss journey seeing as this is supposed to be a weight loss journal. Suffice to say that I am still eating less than I used to, but more than I should . . . however, pleased with myself that I went on a 3k dogwalk in my new runners the last two days, so that's a positive anyway.

Well if you are reading this, I hope the naked husband photo didn't offend and that you too had a lovely family Christmas!

Wednesday, December 23, 2009

Merry Christmas!!

Well I'm afraid I didn't take photos last week . . . and did very few things to make me healthy and happy. All in all, I cut down from what I would have had in the past but that was still too much. I am just planning to do the best I can over the next few days and get back on track as soon as I can so will resume my 100 days shortly. I'm getting proper runners for Christmas (I know because I bought them myself!) so I am planning to really start training for the Channel Challenge on 30 January.

The main reason for this post is to say MERRY CHRISTMAS one and all and wish you a healthy and happy 2010. Best wishes, Lesley

Monday, December 14, 2009

100 day Challenge, Days 8-14

Well, I didn't lose any weight this week . . . Still 80.4 grrrrrr. Bring on 79.9, I say. If I don't pull my finger out, I won't see that magic number before Christmas. Still, considering we had numerous morning teas at work and I went out for dinner, it could be worse. In the spirit of celebrating the small changes that I'm working on everyday, here are my photos for the 100 small step challenge this week.

Day 8

Well after dancing the night away at the wedding, I had a bit of a sleep in then cooked my favourite cafe style healthy brunch. A steamed bunch of asparagus, handful of mushrooms, a few slices of fat-trimmed bacon, a soft poached egg, some parmesan shavings and cracked pepper. Yum! After that healthy and hearty start to the day, I was in good shape NOT to over indulge at the post-wedding BBQ.

Day 9

On Sunday night my nose started dripping and I had a really sore throat. By Monday it was clear I was getting a summer cold. I couldn't ring in sick since half the school knew I'd been partying all weekend, so I spent a very grumpy feverish day in the classroom but excused myself from the staff meeting and came home ASAP. Had a nice spa bath and put on my satin pjs before dinner. These pjs were bought for me as a mother's day present when my almost 18 yr old daughter was 2 and while they fit me for a nano-second, they have been languishing in a drawer for many a year. It's great to be able to wear them again!

Day 10

Well we had a special morning tea for parent helpers today and I way over indulged, knocking off probably about 9 or 10 points in a half an hour!! So it was lentil bolognaise for me for dinner! At only a point or so per serve, it's a great recipe. I went easy on the pasta. Check out the recipe at

Day 11

Went to a literacy professional development session today. This was the final session in a three year pd program so we did a lot of patting ourselves on the back for all our hard work. I was still not feeling flash, but had a great time anyway, and frankly it was good to be away from school for a little while. The downside was the catering, which was apalling! I avoided the packs of family assorted biscuits and defrosted Sara Lee cakes in favour of FRUIT, FRUIT and more FRUIT at morning tea. Then lunch came and every single thing was either fried or in pastry, so I had two tiny chicken kebabs, 1 curry puff and more FRUIT!

Day 12

Still feeling pretty yuk and very snotty, but I took Charlie for a walk anyway. The ONLY exercise I did all week.

Day 13

A change is a good as a holiday, right? I had my hair cut and coloured and let my hair dresser blow dry and iron it straight!! What a shock. I must admit I rather liked it, but no way on this earth am I going to spend 40 minutes doing my hair every day (usually I don't even brush it) --still good to know that I can have a new look if I want to put the effort in. Anyway, Mark and I decided to go out to dinner so I got a chance to show it off. I did quite well by ordering an entree of scallops, an entree of squid (which was fried but a very small serve and so yum--salt and pepper squid is probably my favouritist food!). I also had 2 glasses of wine and a skinny latte.

A special note for Chris H . . . here in the background is one of the quilts I made way back when I used to do stuff like that AND finish it . . . sigh . . . it's all hand pieced, hand-embroidered and hand-quilted . . . sigh . . .

Day 14

Since my middle child has become a vegetarian and I eat alot of vego food due to the low points factor, I spent the afternoon at a vegetarian cooking class. This is my photo of Indian spiced red lentil pate. I put more water and also whacked in some potatoes and spinach to make it more of a dahl. Trust me, it tasted better than it looked!!

Well that's my week . . . am really going to try to be a 70's girl by next week. Good luck everyone!

PS A big thanks to Cassie for telling me how to make a photo collage. Very happy with that!

Monday, December 7, 2009

I'm baaa . . . aack!! And the 100 day challenge

Well I haven't blogged for ages, let's just say it's fourth term! Anyway, I'm back and I'm looking forward to blogging more and being more focussed on my weight loss journey. In a nutshell, here's a catch up . . .

Sober October--well it was almost sober October. I ended up drinking about a total of 2 bottles of wine over the month. That's probably half what I've been drinking since I've been on weight watchers and a fraction of what I used to drink before. Probably best not to go there, eh?! Have come to the conclusion that the best thing for me is to keep trying to cut down and try to have 5 alcohol free days a week.

Weight--I have managed to lose a massive 1 kg per month lately!! Whooppeee!! Actually, I'm okay with it, because I could easily have gained several kg a week, so I can't be too hard on myself. Basically I usually end up having about 25 points a day and I should have 22. This is okay when I'm exercising but report writing etc, I haven't been so good on the exercise front. Ah, well, still should be able to make under 80 by Christmas day, so persistence not perfection remains my motto.

Job--I agonised over applying for the job at my children's private school. Finally decided to go for it and spent half of the september holidays preparing my portfolio, got short-listed and interviewed but didn't make the final cut. Still feel kind of disappointed but relieved at the same time. Have decided though not to stay at my school forever if I'm still not happy next year, but will try and keep an eye out for other opportunities. I have the same grade level, same classroom and also my best and most supportive friend at school next year, so I'm thinking it will all be okay. Hopefully the combination of personalities and dynamics in the classroom will gel a little better than this year. The best thing about the whole interview thing was that I went to a posh clothes shop (ie, a NORMAL clothes shop) in town and bought a gorgeous jacket ON SALE, how cool is that. So I may not have a new job, but I've got a fab new jacket!

100 day challenge . . . well, I have started two challenges "Sober October" of course, which was only moderately succesful. Then I signed up for the November Challenge on the 30 plus board at Weight Watchers. Then my scales broke, so I couldn't weigh myself for most of the month and didn't end up positn at all! So what am I doing entering another challenge you ask? Third time lucky, I guess. This challenge from Linda really inspired me, so I thought I would give it a go. In Linda's words, this is what the challenge is all about: We take a photo that represents one of the small steps we have made towards health (physical or mental) and/or fitness each day of the week.
2. We post all seven of the previous week's photos on Monday. Check out Linda's website for more details. Hopefully I inserted the link properly.

Anyway, here is my first effort for days 1-7. I like the idea because even if you weren't perfect you can choose to focus on the positives. I can't make a fancy collage yet, will have to learn how!

Day 1

On Monday and Wednesday, I take my son to Judo from 7.00-8.30. It's a half hour drive each way. It is a real challenge to get a healthy meal on the table for us all in the small window of opportunity between when I get home and when I have to leave again. So this Sunday I set myself up for a succesful week by cooking chicken and spinach lasagne, cheesy eggplant canneloni, AND shepherd's pie . . . something for everyone. I felt very pleased with myself.

Day 2

While my son was at judo, I thought I would check out the pool to see if it was busy. I couldn't give a rats about people seeing me in my bathers, but I do feel embarrassed when my slow swimming holds other swimmers up. I was delighted to find the pool really empty, except for a bunch of ladies milling around in the middle. When another lady came and started setting up a loud speaker system, I put two and two together and thought "water aerobics--yippee!" I joined in and it was really fun. I've never been able to do real aerobics because I'm so uncoordinated--but in water it was all a bit slower so I could keep up. And no, this isn't a picture of me, but some lovely ladies I found on google image, because I didn't take my camera.

Day 3

I didn't get to the gym AGAIN, but took my puppy Charlie for a lovely long walk. It was a beautiful evening and we both enjoyed it.

Day 4

Had a pretty difficult day at work and raided my goodies box for chocolate frogs. The positive thing I did for myself today is I only had 1!

Day 5

I stuck to my points today!! Yahhh!! I'm trying to save up for this weekend when I have a wedding to go to.

Day 6

I decided I needed a black bra to wear under my black dress at the wedding I'm going to on Sunday. I'm really starting to get into clothes shopping! I chose the prettiest not so supportive style, even though it cost a little more AND bought matching knickers! Pretty underwear is definitely good for the soul!

Day 7

Boogie Shoes! We went to the wedding--a lovely young man and fellow teacher from school married his beautiful new bride. It was a wonderul day. Best of all, I felt really pretty and confident. My husband and I danced for hours! It was a hoot. I even took my jacket off and didn't have to worry about my fat arms, because actually I don't think they looked too bad. My daughter and I gave ourselves pedicures in the morning, haven't done that for years. And even though I had too much wine (points wise, definately didn't disgrace myself) AND a wedding cupcake I figure 3 plus hours of energetic dancing pretty much evened the score.

Just to show you what a fantastic time we had, here are a few pics!

Catch you later!!