Monday, November 06, 2006

I'm Bringing Sexy Back, YUP!

Not that I actually ever really had 'sexy', but it's good to bring it back anyway! LOL

Condo Progress Cont'd

We are Family: my mom, one of my sisters and me!

Me, mom and my lil sis Ashley. In the pics, I'm down 65lbs, my mom's down 30 and my sis is just cute!

My Saturday Night Out

One thing I've always hated being a "BIG" girl is going out alone and worrying that everyone is making fun of, pitying, staring at the fat girl at the bar. Well, I'm trying to get over that whole deal. Saturday I sucked it up and decided to buy some clothes. I haven't bought any new items since I've started this whole journey other than 2 bras and some panties. So, I headed to Avenue and bought 2 size 22Average jeans (nice and snug--MUCH better than 26 or 28s, and they're NOT the stretchy, "lite" denim kind), a pair of khaki cargo capris and 3 tank tops. But then I had these cute outfits with no where to go! I called a new friend of mine, Dani, and asked her to meet me out there and I HAD A BLAST. Dani was cool enough to send me some pics of that evening. Once again, I love the fact that I only look 2 times bigger than everyone, rather than 200X. LOL.

Wednesday, November 01, 2006

I'm Sore and I'm Happy!

My arms are aching, my arse is sore and I'm THRILLED! (Anyone remember that childhood chant "My back is achin'; my belt's too tight; my booty's shakin' from left to right?" LOL) Why am I happy to be in pain? Because it means that I finally got my fat (soon to be phat) ass in gear last night. I did my trusty 2-mile WalkAerobics with Leslie Sansone and then about 25 minutes on the Gazelle (about 2.3 miles); in addition to doing a total of about 50 wall push-ups during my bathroom breaks at work yesterday. I've already done 40 today and expect to be walkin' away again this evening. I'm just soo happy that I've "broken the ice" so to speak and I plan/hope to keep it up.

Today's NS Daily Dose is entitled "Fall Back Pitfall #3: Doubt", and the message that stood out was this: "Doubt only becomes a problem when you actually start belieiving those nagging voices in your head, or you let them lead you down the path to destruction."

The past 10 months has been a series of doubts: I doubted I would make it through the first box of food (especially with those damn muffins and orange "drink"); I doubted I could walk more than 10 minutes; I doubted I could lose 20lbs before I gave up. But I agree with the DD; pay enough attention to the doubts and they become self-fulfilling prophecies.

Well, in keeping with the prophetic implications of my name, I predict that I WILL SUCCEED AND MEET GOAL BY 5/8/2007 (my 32nd birthday)!!

Tuesday, October 31, 2006

Boo Hoo!

Well, I didn't make my Halloween Goal to reach 255. My lowest was 257.5 on Saturday and today I weighed 261. Uugghhhhh!. But I know I haven't been doing what I need to be doing to lose, so I'm hoping that this little set back will provide some much-needed motivation. I NEED to start working out again, and I can't understand why it's soo hard to get back on the wagon when, before I bought the condo, I was working out like a beast: 2-3 mile walks with my dog, 2 mile walkaerobics and 20-30 minutes on my Gazelle--oftentimes all in one evening!! Maybe I wore myself out...maybe my body is bored of that and I need to find another work out method. I still have yet to use the pool in my building but that's because the weather has been weird. Plus, for whatever reason, I'm more self-concious about my body now than I was at my heaviest...the idea of wearing a bathing suit...sigh.

If I could just start walking again. Even a short 2mile walk this evening could do wonders in terms of getting myself back on track. In fact, I should probably see if I could do a little 10 minutes around the block during my lunch break today, provided it's not raining like it was this morning. I hate the idea the idea that my enthusiasm is's not that I don't want to keep losing. I mean, I spend most days staring at various parts of my body freaking out cause they look different. My legs, from the middle of my thighs down look positively NORMAL!! When I step on the scale, or just stand with my feet together, my thighs don't overlap anymore. They're just next to each other. I was in bed the other day and I noticed that when I lay on my side, my knees hurt because they're resting on the bones rather than all that cushion of fat that was there before. Weird. When I first started, I used to do 15-20 wall push-ups each time I went to the bathroom at work; that's when I actually developed muscles. I used to walk 20 minutes at lunch everyday (even though the only reason I stopped was the crazy downtown Miami high noon heat and I was pretty sweaty and nasty when I got back to the office). I have just got to get started again.

Anyone have any suggestions on how to get "back on track" when you've been on the journey for a while. I'm getting desperate. Like today's Daily Dose talks about, I'm fearful of falling back into old bad habits and I don't want to lose control.

Monday, October 30, 2006

All In The Numbers...

I know I've been bitching that my rate of loss has slowed considerably (though I should say that my efforts have not been as "enthusiastic" as they were at the beginning), but progress is always being made and I was reminded of that today when I went to the doctor. Last week he'd ordered a lot of tests and today the results are in: my weight? 261 (with all of my clothes, shoes and cell phone on); my blood pressure? 122/80; my cholesterol? 140; my glucose level? 88. AWESOME!! He told me my numbers were EXCELLENT and that I'm in pretty gosh darn healthy right now. Unfortunately, I do have issues with my blood clotting ability (I suffered from a DVT 3 years ago and am now on blood thinners) and my latest test results were definitely NOT excellent, but once he refers me to a hematologist we should be able to get on top of that too. Also, my BMI is now 38.7. When I started NS it was 48.3!! When I hit 257.5 last week, that made my total weight loss 65lbs! That breaks down to 20.15% of my starting weight and 37.% of my highest known weight. Wouldn't it be great if I could lose another 15lbs by the end of the year?!?!?! Wouldn't it be great if I could get my ass in gear and start walking and/or Gazelle-ing again, like, TODAY??!?!?!??!

Updates: Last week, Mom reached a total of 30lbs lost!!! We're going to be one hot mom & daughter team!


Thursday, October 26, 2006


It's just a number, I know...a little three digit number, but you cannot imagine (okay, maybe some of you can) how AMAZING I felt looking down at the scale this morning and seeing that number. 259. My favorite part is the '5'. I mean, it could have said 259.99999999999999999999999999999999 and I would still have been thrilled.

I can say I weigh in the 250s now. Until it happened, I didn't realize how I truly believed it never would. 259. Crazy to think someone could be happy to weigh double what a "normal" woman should weigh. But as NS is teaching me, I can't compare myself to others. This is MY journey, my goals, my TRIUMPH! It's more amazing that I reached it while I've been in this post-condo slump. I haven't yet been able to get back on track in terms of working out; I've been incorporating much more 'regular' food into my daily habits (now that I have a mortgage, the $300+ a month for NS is a little tough); and I've only lost about 5-7lbs over the last 3 months! But 259. I think I'm going to play it in the Cash 3 tonight. Oh, and yesterday I put on and fit into, could sit and breathe in a pair of size 20 jeans. I CANNOT BELIEVE THIS IS REALLY HAPPENING!!! Maybe I really can meet my Halloween goal of 255..but even if I don't I AM OKAY! I actually want to go clothes shopping. I want to buy a sexy outfit for the holidays. If I could lose 10 pounds by the end of this year, I'd be in the 240s...considering I started this journey weighing 322.5, and a short 4 years ago weighed in excess of 409lbs, that would be just wonderful.

This is the most amazing thing that's ever happened to me...and I'm the one making it happen. How AWESOME is that!?!?

"When a goal matters enough to a person, the person will find a way to accomplish what at first seemed impossible."

A healthy weight matters enough to me; I WILL ACCOMPLISH MY GOAL!

Thanks, friends for supporting me through this and loving me either way!

Thursday, October 05, 2006


Thanks for the tag, Leigh! Here goes: I work as a legal secretary for two attorneys in a downtown Miami law firm.

1. What is the best thing about your workplace?

I get paid. I don't have to wear pantyhose, closed toe shoes or even "business attire". Heck, EVERY day is casual Friday and I have gone to work many a week wearing jeans every day. Plus, Starbucks is a 2 minute walk away! I get all legal holidays off with pay, including Jewish holidays...just call me Cassandre Goldstein!

2. What do you hate about your workplace?

This lunatic co-worker MAP who is the biggest busy body, two-faced, phony, ass-kissing, oversteps her boundaries, RUDE woman in my office. Honestly. I mean, I've worked there for 18 months and she is the only truly unpleasant aspect of my day.

3. What small irritance at your workplace really annoys you?

Refer to my answer for number 2.

4. Describe the actions/quirks of the weirdest person you work with?

Okay, back to MAP--she has this really annoying habit of ending every sentence with OK in that upspeak know what I mean. Every sentence ends up sounding like a question cause they all end in "OK?" And she has this quasi-speech impediment so it sounds that she's constantly sucking spit, or talking around a mouthful of spit and she sounds like Sesame Street's Ernie when she laughs: "Heeessh Heesh Heeesh"... She's such a PHONY!! And did I mention she was RUDE!?!

5. What is one thing that you would change at your workplace to make life a helluva lot better?

Ummmm, bigger paycheck, less work, less hours--hell, yes, I'm lazy! More cute male co-workers...masseuses to cater to my every need while I work.

OK, so now I'm tagging Julie, Jaime and Bob. Have at it, kiddies!


Wednesday, October 04, 2006

On the "Road" Again

Like I said yesterday, I'm trying desperately to get back on track with my weight loss. Monday, October 9th will mark 9 months on NutriSystem, and as of today I've lost a total of 61.5 pounds. It took me nearly 3 months to hit that particular goal (crossing the 60lbs lost mark and getting my new teal bear), and I must say it was VERY discouraging considering up until that point I'd been doing well. But that's in the past, I'm in the present and trying to make my future a bright one.

Since I didn't make my goal of reaching 260lbs by September 17th I'm revising my goals. I've got to keep them current and realistic--they keep me focused on something rather than just flailing around hoping I don't gain all the weight back.

Reach 255 by October 31, 2006 Halloween;
Reach 250 by November 15, 2006;
Reach 245 by November 30, 2006;
Reach 240 by December 25, 2006;
Reach 235 by January 9, 2007.
I CANNOT allow myself to lose sight of these goals: my goal to live a healthy and active lifestyle, to be healthy enough to have a child (if and when a potential father becomes involved), to not weigh more than the average NFL player, to be able to go on a rollercoaster without fear of being pulled out of line, to be able to wear a bathing suit without a huge cover-up T-shirt, etc. Plus, I just want to be SEXY!! lol.
And the day came when the risk to remain tight in a bud was more painful than the risk it took to blossom. ~ Anais Nin

Tuesday, October 03, 2006

Thanks, Marlins!

Well, the Florida Marlins' season is over. It was my first season paying any sort of real attention to baseball and I learned A LOT. No one gave this team a chance; they were supposed to have lost 100 games at least. But we didn't. They set a number of individual, franchise and even MLB records, so it was a great season for such a young team. I was fortunate enough to be able to enjoy opening day with my friends Danny, Scott and Joe. These pictures are from last Friday's game against the Phillies, which is the last game I attended. I won the tickets from WQAM, a four pack of seats in the 3 row right behind the dugout PLUS an actual game ball! Now, what I love about this picture is that, for once, I don't look 20 times bigger than everyone else in the photo. I mean, the angle is perfect and actually makes me look like I'm a normal size. How EXCITING!!!

It's All Coming Together

Well, this is my mess. The living room set came from my mom's family room. It's 12 years old but for about 10 of them we weren't allowed to sit on them unless guests were over, so they're in pretty good shape. I wouldn't have picked them, but I think they go pretty well with the whole decor. As you can see, I'm using my microwave box as a coffee table. The dinette set is coming from my friend and will go in the space behind the love seat (where the ladder is now). I LOVE the way the tile came out. I was a little nervous, but I think it's a nice effect that looks like wood, but wasn't as expensive and doesn't require that same level of maintenance. The beautiful wall unit was a surprise gift from my mother (one of the MANY she's given me since I moved in). We had agreed that she would go with me to Rooms-To-Go to pick out a bedroom set because I didn't have a dresser or chest or nightstands or anything. So, the day before of our shopping trip I went to RTG online and showed her the wall units I was considering (the very same one you're looking pictured here). The next day I call her on my way home so we can meet for the store and after several calls with no answer, my sister calls to tell me that mom said something came up and I should go straight I did and my bedroom set (which she'd purchased the day I closed on the condo) and my wall unit (that she'd picked two weeks before) were set up in my condo!!!! I was speechless. (And damn Danny for not spilling the beans cause he knew the whole time!) I don't have a picture of the whole bedroom set yet, but below is a pic of me in the bed. I was pretty tired, I guess. LOL

Progress Pics

The half bath is brick red

Kitchen is almost complete
Danny hard at work installing the ceiling fan, while Joe, his uncle Rob, his brother-in-law (I forget his name) and Scott watch and relax after a Marlins game. Danny really is THE MAN!!

Back with a Vengeance

"When I do good, I feel good; when I do bad, I feel bad, and that is my religion" - Abraham Lincoln
I've been 'away' for a while now so here's what's been going on, in a nutshell:
1) The painting is complete. I am officially moved in. My condo is a mess.
2) I've started back on the Gazelle (3+ miles in 35 minutes for the last two days--first official workouts in nearly 3 months!!)
3) I've reached my lowest weight, 263.5, but did not make my September 17th goal. Ah well, that's life. Nothing is written in stone so I've revised my goals and now am working to reach 255 by Halloween. I'm also hoping to have my place cleaned up enough by then to have a house-warming/Halloween party. We'll see.
4) The Marlins' season is over. :-( But, damn, did those young 'uns play their asses off or what?
Since I started the move process I unhooked my computer and have not had one readily available for me to keep up on my blogging. And since I was soo consumed with the search for, the purchase and renovation of and the move into my condo, I was nowhere near as focused on my weight loss as I should have been. But I'm not going to beat myself up about it...I actually think of the time as a kind of victory because I was able to maintain my weight (and lose a measly pound) without killing myself with workouts or starving myself. It's something I was eventually going to have to learn anyway, I just thought I'd be at goal before I started worrying about maintaining.
But, I'm back, I'm focused and I'm hoping to lose another 15-20lbs by the end of this year.

Thursday, September 21, 2006

You're In My Front Row


Life is a theatre; invite your audience carefully. Not everyone is healthy enough to have a front row seat in our lives. There are some people in your life that need to be loved from a distance. It’s amazing what you can accomplish when you let go of (or at least minimize) your time with draining, negative, incompatible, not-going-anywhere relationships and/or friendships.
Observe the relationships around you. Pay CLOSE attention. Which ones lift and which ones lean? Which ones encourage and which discourage? Which ones are on a path of growth uphill and which ones are going downhill? When you leave certain people do you feel better or worse? Which ones always have drama and which ones really understand, know or appreciate you?
The more YOU seek quality, respect, growth, peace of mind, love and truth around you, the easier it will become for you to decide who gets to sit in the front row and who should be moved to the balcony of your life.

"Since you cannot change the people around you,
change the people you’re around."

Thursday, August 24, 2006

FINALLY: Scale Is Moving On Down

Thursday's NutriSystem Daily Dose entitled "Don't Give Up" was great and came right on time as far as I'm concerned. I'll share the first paragraph with you here:

Did you wake up today and think, "Argghh...another day where I have to control my eating...another day when I need to try to fit in exercise...another day of all those vegetables and salads"? Or maybe you said to yourself, "Man, I'm SO tired of fighting this weight thing every day. When do I get to eat whatever I want to eat? You know what, forget it--I'm going to binge today."

Since I've started NS, I wake up and think similar thoughts more often than not. Sometimes I feel as though I WILL KILL someone if I have to eat one more cup of yogurt, can of plain tuna or chicken, cucumber, cup of plain oatmeal, green pepper or drink one more glass of f*&%ing water!!!! [One of my main cravings is Mexican food: I just LOVE the combination of tortilla, tomato, cheese, guacamole, sour cream, beans and yellow rice over chicken or beef AND fried tortilla chips and salsa! Can you say MAJOR calories (and clogged arteries) but mmm mmmm good, ya know?!] Most times I'd rather take the elevator than the stairs; I'd rather park in the closest spot than the one furthest away; I'd rather go to bed than get on the Gazelle or take my dog for a walk; I'd rather eat a loaded cheeseburger than a Nutrisystem muffin--actually, I'd rather eat just about anything than eat those muffins--YUCK!!; I'd rather just accept being fat and hope that everyone will leave me alone.

But my word of the day is PERSEVERANCE: "to persist in a state, enterprise, or undertaking in spite of counterinfluences, opposition, or discouragement" (Source: I'm closing in on the end of week 33 on Nutrisystem. 33 WEEKS!! Basically, 8 months and that, in and of itself, is a victory. It is BY FAR my longest and most concentrated weight loss ever. And I certainly did not become morbidly obese over the course of 8 months or even 8 years: it was a lifetime of bad food decisions, lack of exercise, lack of discipline to stick to a diet, lack of caring for myself--all of which resulted in a 400+ pound body.

Today as I sit here and write this, I'm thinking about that Daily Dose message: don't give up. No matter what, I CAN NOT GIVE UP!! It doesn't matter that I didn't lose any weight for nearly 2 months. The victory came when I did not allow that to derail all my efforts and give up, that I didn't just say "Well, fuck it then. I'm just meant to be fat. Now, put the Gazelle in the closet and where's the Taco Bell?" And because I didn't give up, I can report that today I weigh 265.5, my lowest weight I can ever remember (except for weighing 237 when I went to WW fat camp at age 10), for a total of 57lbs GONE!!! I really don't know what's been different over this past week; I still haven't worked out in nearly 2 months now outside of all my "condo-robics". But I don't really need to analyze it too much: the scale is moving in the right direction again. I feel GREAT and I actually feel lean. I know, I know--at my size, the last word I should use to describe myself is lean, but that's how I feel. Yesterday at work I decided to go up and down the stairs 3 times (4 flights). It took all of 8 minutes, but I was sweaty and tired. Hopefully, it's something I can keep up.

And finally, it's time to revise my goals to reflect this little "episode" I had to endure. I'm trying to keep them ambitious and optimistic yet realistic so that I don't discourage myself by setting unattainable goals.
Week 36 (September 17) - 260
Week 40 (October 15) - 252.5
Week 44 (November 12) - 245.5
Week 48 (December 10) - 237.5
Week 52 (January 7) - 232.5
This would result in a total of 90lbs lost in one year on NS (anniversary date is January 9, 2007).
UPDATE: My condo's going to get some color tonight, FINALLY! Move in date is scheduled for Friday, September 1. Talk about a true Labor Day weekend; I'm going to be working my ARSE off!

Tuesday, August 22, 2006

Reality Bites

You know the saying, "Oh, what a tangled web we weave, when we practice to deceive"...(it's something like that; I'm paraphrasing)? The point is I believe that I was deceiving myself and my body was punishing me. I'll explain: My goal for the month of June was to reach 267.5lbs, a total of 55lbs lost in 6 months. I reached that goal June 29. Shortly thereafter came my TOM and I went up to 273 then 275, hovered there for a while, reached 277 and hovered around there for a while and one day I even weighed 280. I was pretty devastated. I was working out 60-90 minutes of cardio 4-5 times a week, I drink about a gallon of water daily and I thought I was eating pretty well. But my weight never went back down. Now, the whole time I figured, "Ok, here it is, the dreaded PLATEAU. I'll just wait it out." But waiting out the plateau is very hard. I kept thinking, "why work out or not eat that extra cup of rice since I'm not losing any weight anyway?!" I refused to update my weight-trackers to go backward...I felt that by doing that, I'd be admitting defeat. I was in denial.

This past weekend, as the last couple of weekends, I busted my ass working on the condo: 2 12hour days working on that thing and I was SORE. But I was feeling lean and good about myself. I live on the fourth floor but have been taking the stairs up, even when I have groceries or things to carry. Well, Sunday I peeked at the scale: 271.5. Yippeee! I was thrilled because that was my lowest weight since July 2. But I didn't want to get my hopes up because a couple of weeks ago I moved from the 275-278 range into the 273-274 range but it stopped there. Yesterday I weighed: 271.5 again. Great. At least it didn't go back up. So, I finally decided that it wasn't a plateau, that I'd actually gained the weight. It was like confession to myself. I updated my weight trackers to reflect 51lbs lost instead of 55. I figured, time to refocus and recommit and I can just go forward from here. This morning I weighed 268.5. I don't really know what it means. I mean, I could be up a couple of pounds tomorrow morning. The point is, psychologically it was important that I confront and accept the fact that I had gained the weight--not because of my TOM or a plateau or my body holding on to fat because I'm not eating enough to balance the calories I'm burning. This is a journey of many, many, many steps. I will experience setbacks. The key is to face them head-on and stop burying my head in the sand like an ostrich. No more of that.

So, I've set a new goal. I want to get my 60lb bear by October 8 (week 39 on NS). SLOW AND STEADY WINS THE RACE!! Wish me luck. Hope you all are well.

Monique's B-Day

For those of you who check in on my blog fairly regularly, you may recall me talking about one of my favorite haunts, Monty's in Coconut Grove. My friend Monique is a bartender there--she's soo good I like to tell her, "You can't have Monty's without Mo!"--and last Wednesday was her birthday. So a bunch of us lushes, I mean her friends, came out to help her celebrate since she had to work. (Twist my arm, oww oww. LOL) These pics are of several regulars. Monique is the cute little blond with ringlets. She's tiny, but she likes tall men--the last pic is of her and her man Chris who stands about 8 foot 2...okay, not really, but it looks like that they stand next to each other. LOL. Aren't they adorable?! [Fellow NSers: you gotta love her strategy; I gotta find me a really BIG and really TALL guy so that next to him I look like his cute, tiny girlfriend. Heehee]

Monday, August 21, 2006

Labor of Love in Progress (cont.)

Bedroom (top pic) will be "Handsome Hue" (Behr) it's a nice somewhat dark blue, the living portion of (as well as the entire living/dining area) will be "Artifact Sand"'s kind of a sandy, salmon color--more toward beige than pink. The den (past the sliding glass doors) will be "Boston Brick" (darkish red). I'm hoping to be able to find blinds similar to the color of the paint so that when they're closed, it'll give the illusion of a solid wall. The bottom pic is of my view from the den through a CLEAN window. Cleaning those damn windows took nearly an entire day, an entire bottle of Fantastik and 3/4 of a bottle of 409 Glass & Surface cleaner! NOW, I know why people don't do windows!

Saturday my realtor called to follow up on my progress with the condo (what realtor do you know does calls after the closing?), specifically how Danny and I were able to get rid of that pain-in-the-ARSE plaster-raised mural. Anyway, he is very knowledgable about general contract and electric work and after reviewing the wall, he moved on to inspect the rest of the place. Now, my maintenance fee includes basic cable and you may notice in the pics of the living room and den that there are coils of white cable sitting in the corners. There must have been 20-25 feet of it hanging around. Again, no skin off my nose. I planned to coil the excess up tight and hide it behind my TV. Well, my Super-Realtor felt it was an eyesore and started saying how neat it would be if the cable could actually come out of the wall through an outlet rather than having that ugly white cable everywhere. Yeah, "neat" I responded, thinking that some time later, MUCH LATER (when I've somewhat re-stocked my bank account), I can think about fixing that. Well, when I told him the tile guy was coming on Monday his brain went into overdrive and he went to work and put Danny and me to the same. He left to get a tool, came back and cut a trough in the concrete floor of my bedroom wide enough to lay the cable down in, drilled a hole in the wall underneath an old antennae outlet so that it could be rewired for cable. Also, when he did that, he got a splitter so that he wouldn't have to do the same in the living room. TA DA! Now, rather than a ton of old cable, I have a simple outlet in my living room and bedroom to plug in my TVs. AWESOME, huh?!? Well, there's more.

Notice my bedroom and living room are sans ceiling fan/light fixtures. Now, before I bought the place I figured I could always get lamps and fans. I mean, no big deal, right? Well, I mentioned to Super-Realtor that I eventually (way, way way down the line) to call an electrician and have him come and install ceiling fans in my bedroom and living room areas. "SR" would have none of that. He proceeded to give me a list of items I needed from Home Depot, WENT WITH ME TO THE HOME DEPOT, came back the next day and he and Danny set up the fixture in my living room, fixed and updated the one in the den, and he just called me about half an hour ago to announce that he's on his way over there to meet Danny and finish up the one in the bedroom. This was no small feat. They had to drill a hole in the wall just above the outlet from which the fan would draw power, another at the top of the wall, fish the cable through the two holes so that it could be mounted on the ceiling, and VOILA! Ceiling fans...except I haven't bought the fans yet. LOL.

He also changed the switch for the chandelier fixture, that for some reason was installed sideways; he advised me about getting new outlets (including the special ones that go in the bathroom and kitchen--anywhere near water). Thank GOD for my mom's Home Depot charge card! My realtor worked with Danny for about 4 hours on Saturday and another 4 on Sunday. I can't imagine the amount of money I saved with the projects he did and how much it increased the value of my property. When I think about how I met him (through whole RJ SNAFU with the first condo I wanted to buy)... I just can't believe how things work out. I mean, the guy has absolutely no reason to do all this. He's already got his commission. He'd done a PHENOMENAL job so I was certain to recommend him to any of my friends. He's NOT trying to get into my pants (he's married to a cute little Latina). I guess there really are just good people in the world and I was fortunate enough to one cross my path. I cannot wait to see how this place comes out. The only drawback is that I'm a little behind on the painting schedule due to the all the unanticipated projects this weekend. So, once again, any of you who are local and available to help paint (you don't have to be Van Gogh--I'll stick you with closets and shelving and other low-visibility places), I WOULD LOVE YOUR HELP.

Finally, I've weighed in at 271.5 for the last couple of days. I'm very pleased. I read a great article about plateaus and I'm trying to find the right balance of calories in-calories burned to get me losing again. I hope I've found it. Hope you all are well. And if all goes well with me, I hope to move in by Labor Day weekend (appropriate for my Labor of Love, don't you think) and to have my condo-warming party start with NFL Kick-off Thursday!

Labor of Love in Progress...

Remember the funky mural?! GONE!! Remember the 1972 range and mustard-colored ceiling panels and frames? GONE!! Progress is being made!!

Monday, August 14, 2006


1. What time is it? 9:26am

2. What's your full name? Cassandre Dominique Anglade

3.What are you most afraid of? The idea that those I love don't know how much I love them...and crazy rollercoasters.

4. What is the most recent movie that you have seen in a theatre? Over the Hedge

5. Place of birth? Mercy Hospital, Chicago, Illinois

6. Favorite food? grillot (Haitian-style fried pork) w/ flattened & fried plaintains...ohh, with red beans and rice, of course!

7. What's your natural hair color? dark brown

8. Who is the last person you spoke to on the phone? Rich

9. Ever been toilet papering? On Halloween 'cause I have nothing better to do than throw rolls of toilet paper around someone's house? Uhh...NO!

10. Love someone so much it made you cry? Oh, dear. If you know me, you know.

11. Been in a car accident? Head on collision with a group of stoned teenagers in rental; rear-ended by an SUV driven by 4 deaf mutes (yes, you heard me; and I wondered why they didn't come to ask if I was ok!).

12. Croutons or bacon bits? neither!

13. Favorite day of the week? Saturday Night/Sunday Morning (and, yes, that IS a Phil Collins song)

14. Favorite Restaurant? Monty's, just cause I love the atmosphere

15. Favorite flower? Lily of the Valley

16. Favorite sport to watch? NFL (but NBA and NCAA are right behind)

17. Favorite Drink? Water.

18 Favorite ice cream? Jamocha Almond Fudge

19. Disney or Warner bros? DEFINITELY Disney; is there really any question?

20. Favorite fast food restaurant? Tokyo Bowl

21. What color is your bedroom carpet? Tile

22. How many times you failed your driver's test? 0

23. Before this one, from whom did you get your last e-mail? Daily Inspiration

24. What do you do most often when you are bored? Sleep

25. Bedtime? Between 12 and 1AM

26. Who will respond to this e-mail the quickest? Surprise me.

27. Who is the person you sent this to that is least likely to respond? most of you

28. Who is the person that you are most curious to see their responses? They know who they are

29. Favorite TV shows? Reruns: Three's Company, MacGyver, Golden Girls, Cosby Show, Frasier, NYPD Blue, Judging Amy

30. What are you listening to right now? Gnarlz Barkley's "Crazy"...wait, now it's Daniel Powter's "Bad Day"

31. What's your favorite color? Blue

32. How many tattoos do you have? None

33. What would you like to accomplish before you die? Reach my goal weight; have and raise well-rounded, happy child(ren); travel to Europe; earn a million dollars in one calendar year; perform before an audience of more than 1000 people.

34. How many people are you sending this e-mail to? A whole mess o' people.

35. When and where did you graduate from high school? Archbishop Curley-Notre Dame High School's Class of 1992--Go Knights!

Thursday, August 10, 2006

Lizard Boy Loses

It's soo nice to know you all "got my back", so to speak. As far as "Lizard Boy" is concerned, I've been advised that I need no longer waste my time on someone who so obviously doesn't appreciate me. If he hasn't already made up his mind that he definitely wants to see where 'this' is going, then 'this' is going NOWHERE FAST!! I guess I just didn't want to believe that in actuality, he's already made up his mind that he doesn't want me, no matter what he says. Apparently, I'm just the type who needs an anvil dropped on my head before I get the hint. So,
I've officially decided (again) to let go. I mean, I know that whenever there are feelings of this intensity involved, it's damn near impossible to make a clean break ('cold turkey' so to speak--hey, ever notice how many sayings are food-based??--but I guess that's for another post), but I have to do it for my own sanity and emotional well-being. I'm beginning to develop a complex about the whole thing! It's just a matter of reminding myself that (1) I am worthy of having a good relationship in my life; (2) I don't NEED a relationship with some guy to make me a complete person (no matter how nice it would be); (3) ultimately, IT'S HIS LOSS. And, boy, is he going to be SORRY he passed me up!!!

I am sooo sore from all the work I've been doing on the condo, but it's worth it. It looks like I'll be moving in during Labor Day weekend; a little later than I'd hoped, but I'm at the mercy of the tile guy and his schedule. The textured mural has been sanded down, so now it's pretty much just a matter of sanding the rest of the walls and prepping to paint. I'll buy the paint tmw and start painting this weekend. Hey, anyone interested in a paint party? Yeah, yeah, yeah, I didn't think so. Where's all my support now?!? LOL. [Have I told you today how great Danny has been through this whole renovation process--both with my body and my condo? That's a real friend.]

I'm also sore because of some new exercises I've been trying. I just started, but I already feel something. I don't know what the actual exercises are called but the first is to work the lower abdominal muscles: lie on the floor, legs closed, lift legs about 45 degrees (or 30 degrees for more intensity) off the ground, then open wide, close, lower, lift, open, close, lower. I've been trying to do 20-25 a day. I know it doesn't sound like much, but it's HARD. I've also started taking the stairs up to my condo (4th floor) and the parking garage here at work (4th floor or higher). The other exercise is for my buttocks. Hands and knees on the floor, lift a leg up in the air with the bottom of my foot parallel to the ceiling and push upwards rapidly 20-25 times with each leg. I definitely felt that in my arse immediately. They are just little things I'm trying to do to keep active during this time when I've found it difficult to get my 60-90 minutes of cardio in. I was also looking online today for some water aerobic exercises that I can start doing once I start using my new pool. I guess I gotta get a new bathing suit. Uggghhh! (sorry for the visual)

Tuesday, August 08, 2006

Love Stings

When I wrote the title of this post, I meant to write "Love Stinks"...but "stings" works too. It just sucks. Why? Well, I'm in 'luv' with an idiot...we'll call him "Lizard-Boy" as Danny has named him. Smart? Yes. Funny? Yes. Cute? Yes. Talented? Yes. Likes me? He says he does...but as we all know, actions speak louder than words. So, yes, at this point, I doubt his veracity when he tells me he has feelings for me. Problem is, I have yet to be able to "kick him to the curb"!! I don't know why. I mean, he doesn't treat me badly or anything. He can be (and has been) very sweet and kind at times. He's never treated me differently because of my weight; in fact, though he's been very supportive of my weight loss endeavor, he's made a point to tell me that he "loved me the way I was and the way I am now, so long as I'm happy." [I'm sure he must have been drunk, 'cause guys are only that sweet in the movies.] He can also be extremely inconsiderate and thoughtless. I've yet to determine whether those instances are intentional to get me "off his back" or if he's just being a guy (no offense, guys). [BTW, Guys, what the hell is wrong with just telling a gal you don' t like her 'in that way' or that you just 'want to be friends'???!?]
Anyway, I guess the reason I'm writing this now is because I got an e-mail forward from Colleen today that included this quote about love: "Love is when that special someone sticks around with you until you realize that you love them back, and if you don't they are still there waiting for the day you'll realize that no one else can love you in that way..." It immediately struck a chord with me and I've been thinking about it all day. I guess because I go back and forth whether a relationship that "could" or "may" be in the future is worth being patient for. Or am I just being a SUCKER & LOSER?! I'm sure most women would have let it go by now figuring that if he hasn't committed yet, he never will. But (1) when I get attached, it's VERY hard to un-stick myself and (2) I'm not even sure I want a committed relationship right now. I mean I'm in an state of transformation right now and I want to be sure I am the Cassandre I am happy with before I pursue an exclusive relationship. Doesn't mean I'm not a little lonely, though. :-(
Another reason I felt this topic was blog-worthy is because, at core, this issue is all tied up with my weight and self-esteem. Part of me doesn't want to give up on him because I believe there will never be any one else who makes me feel that way. [I gotta give him credit. He makes me feel like I was a freshman in high school when I was in love/obsessed with (same difference) with the senior stud David Willard. That boy was just adorable and I got chicken skin and butterflies in my stomach everytime he walked down the hallway.] Why should I feel unlovable, unattractive, and unsexy just because I don't look like Beyonce or Tyra Banks?! BIG GIRLS NEED LOVE TOO! (Thank goodness for F.W.Bs!!)

Work Drama

I don't usually discuss work too much, but this situation has been getting out of hand. Guess what?! I have a stalker! Well, I don't know if she can actually be classified as a stalker, but she definitely has an unusual interest in me. She's a fairly new secretary at the firm that I work for and for some reason has decided that I need her micro-managing me, despite the fact that I've managed to keep my job for (and be promoted in) the year before she even got there. I was even approached by the managing partner for the office manager position, three months after I got there!! I'm not sure if she's obsessed with the fact we're in equal positions despite the fact that I'm only a "three-year" secretary -- maybe she's bitter cause it's taken her damn near 30 years experience to be doing the same thing I am. I know she's mentioned that I have a better chair--which is true, but all I did was ask for one when my back started hurting. I didn't go around whining that "so-and-so has a better chair, so I want one too!" She sends me these e-mails that are paragraph-long formal requests to ask something like, "hey, do you know the password?" She's way too interested in my comings and goings, 'tracking' my time, I guess. Why does she care when I come in, when I leave or when I go to Starbucks if my bosses don't? She has managed to alienate everyone who works with her, and nearly everyone on the floor. She has no concept of boundaries--like, do your job and we'll do ours and she seems to have no clue that it's the way she comes across that's making people dislike her.
I've brought it to both my bosses and the office manager who've basically concurred that she's nuts and has issues, not only with me, but in general. Her own boss deletes all her e-mails and thinks she's nuts. I'm not sure how someone can go around and interact with people and have no clue that they are disliked, or why. She'll send me e-mails requesting me not to change her stuff after she's spent her first 2 months here trying to change every last thing she can. She's attempted to sabotage me and my office manager, tries to obtain money she's not entitled to (even to the point of suggesting the mgr jeopardize her job)--and then will go to the ofc mgr to complain about not being a good manager!! The only one truly friendly with her is the secretary she doesn't work directly with and sits on the opposite side of the office. I guarantee if she tried the pull the sh*t with Maria that she has with me, Maria would not stand for it!
In trying to get me to calm down, my boss told me that I have to keep this all in perspective and to remember the following things: I'm losing weight. I look good and feel good. I just bought a condo that's going to look bad ass when I'm done. My bosses love me. She's obviously JEALOUS and is looking for ways to bring me down! (I just LOVE my boss---this is the 'lecture' I get when I brought up the issues with the psycho-secretary.) And, she's right. Why should I let this nut make me nuts?! I guess, if I look at it that way, it's kind of flattering. LOL.

Friday, August 04, 2006

Breaking the Plateau

I don't want to jinx it or anything, but I peeked at the scale again today: 271. That's the lowest weight I've been since July 9th!!! So far this week I've lost more weight than all of last month. I was 275 on Sunday, 273 on Tuesday, 271.5 yesterday and 271 today. I don't know if this means my body is finally back on track or what (funny how it happened during my 2nd week of no working out--maybe whoever told me I wasn't eating enough to support my exercise habits was right. I can only hope). I'm just going to keep doing what I'm doing. I want to get back on the Gazelle soon cause I miss it, but maybe my body was craving a change up in activity. I can't wait to start using my new pool.

BTW: GO MARLINS!!! Last night they beat the "mighty" NY Mets (who, like the Jets, SUCK, SUCK, SUCK!) and took the series. I was there with my friends Joe, Matt and Sara and we had a great time! Hey, maybe we can still make the wildcard after all. Stranger things have happened.

Labor of Love II

Kitchen, half bath, vantage point from the front door, hallway from the bedroom and master bath. See, that funky raised painting is EVERYWHERE!!! Hopefully, that belt sander will help me tone up my arms! Makes me want to sneeze just looking at all the dust!

Thursday, August 03, 2006

Progess: Slow But Sure

I had to do something to remind myself that although I've hit a plateau, I have made significant progress. Leigh, Linda, Kathryn, Paul, Jamie and Tressa (and EVERYONE I know I forgot): you guys have been like my own little cheerleading squad (Paul, it'd be interesting to see your skinny self in a cheerleading outfit with pom-poms! LOL!).

I only uploaded my most recent pictures (taken July 5th, weight 269); the discs with my other 'before' pics are buried in the mess that will soon be "the room I occupied when I lived with my mother." But you can look at my first blog post (January 27th, I think) and compare. What I first noticed is that not only are my clothes looser and my body smaller, but my smile seems bigger! And they (whoever 'they' are) say the quickest, easiest and cheapest way to improve your appearance is to smile. So, I'm smiling.

BTW: I look a LOT DARKER, too, don't I? I guess all those walks outside with Mosley fostered a tan I really didn't need.

Labor of Love

Well, here it is: my labor of love. My new baby, my condo. These are a few "before" pics. However, they were taken after we tore up the 35-yr-old carpet and took down the 1972 green drapes. The mural on the wall of the dining room is actually not a bad piece of art. It was probably very fashionable in the 70s, along with lime green shag carpet, lava lamps and the BeeGees. The view is from my bedroom window that faces north. The balcony was enclosed and is now a "den". The view is pretty much the same as in my bedroom, just a little further west. I've pretty much settled on a tile that looks like wooden flooring--to go with the blue I chose for the bedroom and sort of rose color I'm leaning toward for the living/dining area. Pulling up the carpet and linoleum as well as all the wood it was nailed to was no joke. Then I had to buy a belt sander to start sanding that damn mural off the wall because they textured it by using plaster! PLASTER!!! I used the sander for about 30 minutes yesterday and I sweat about 3 gallons! I don't know what I would do without Danny, my best friend, who has done sooooooo much work already. I think I'd like a celery green or peridot for the kitchen, and some neutral color for the master and half bathrooms. I'm telling you, I'm soo sore from all the work that I don't even feel bad I've missed my workouts this week. In fact, I'm looking forward to taking tonight off from the condo and taking a 2-3 mile walk with my neglected dog.
As you can see, the place needs A LOT of work, so if you haven't heard from me in a while, don't panic. I'll touch base soon and will post 'after' pics as well. Funny how the whole theme of this blog is transformation--first my body, now my condo! LOL.

Wednesday, August 02, 2006

Slow and Steady Wins The Race

We've ALL heard the fable of the tortoise and the hare in one form or another (and if you haven't, I don't even want to think about where you've been--not even the Bugs Bunny episode?!) Anyway, though I've been preoccupied with working on my condo, my plateau looms large on my mind. I'm happy not to be gaining weight; okay, okay, I confess. I peeked at the scale Sunday afternoon and again this morning, 275 and 273.5, respectively. I continue to hover 6-8lbs heavier than my lowest weight at the end of June. At first, I relaxed on the food for a little bit--but only a little bit. For example, I'd have a non-NS dinner 3 times in a week instead of only once. Then I went back on plan 100% and still no loss. It's discouraging to say the least. I mean, I should be happy I didn't stay in the 279-280 range that I hit right after my last TOM (which reminds me of what's rapidly approaching...sigh).

The point is that I have to remember this is part of the body is still changing and adjusting to my new lifestyle. My daily inspiration quote today has fortified my resolve and I wanted to share it with you:

"Victory is won not in miles but in inches. Win a little now, hold your ground, and later, win a little more."– Louis L'Amour
Also, many, many thanks to all of you who have helped keep my head up during this plateau. It makes me happy to know you are all still rooting for me and are not disappointed in me when it's hard not to be disappointed in myself. XOXOXOXO

Tuesday, August 01, 2006


NOW, I know the reason I started NS! God was preparing me for the purchase of a condo that needed work. Yesterday, Danny and I proceeded to tear up, like, 700 sq/ft of carpet. Had I been 322.5lbs like I was in January, I might have had a heart attack last night and today's Herald headline would have read, "New Condo Owner Collapses!" or something like that. The carpet part isn't soo bad; it's actually kind of fun hearing the great ripping sound the carpet makes. The hard part was squatting to use the crow bar to pry up the wood along the walls with all the nails sticking out. My back and arms are killing me; not to mention I have blisters on my hands. Boohoo. (Not really; it's too exciting being a condo-owner! LOL)

I'm still in my hiatus from the scale--but only as to weigh-ins. I'm back on plan food-wise and water-wise, but my workouts have been tough to get in given all the work with the condo and stuff. The majority of my workouts for the next couple of weeks will be in the form of manual labor (and I can't believe I'm actually missing my walks with Mosley and my time on the Gazelle). I'm hoping to be able to move in sometime in the next 3 weeks. We'll see. Wish me luck.

Monday, July 31, 2006

Cass' Condo

Yes, I can actually say "my condo" because as of about 5:45pm on Friday, July 28, 2006, I became a condo owner!!! YIPPEEEE!!! And now, Monday morning, I am absolutely and utterly EXHAUSTED. I mean, I got tired just shopping at Home Depot and I haven't even done any work yet! LOL. But I have a feeling this is the kind of work I won't mind so much. :-) But there is soooo much to do: cleaning, pulling up carpet, sanding and priming walls, painting, laying down tile (I'm leaving that to a pro), and then the actual moving in of furniture (any volunteers to help??). My workouts for the next month will be mostly in the form of manual labor, but, hey, so long as I'm burning calories, I could care less. SIGH...but this is a great thing...this has been a great year soo far. Now, if only I could hit 60lbs lost sometime soon...that's the next goal.

Monday, July 24, 2006

Playing Catch Up time flies! I can't believe it's been nearly three weeks since my last post, but my life has been a bit of a whirlwind lately, so I'm stopping to catch my breath and catch up with you all.
Okay, first things first, July challenge status: you may have noticed that my weight trackers have not changed. I haven't been able to lose any weight at all since making my July 4th goal to reach 267.5. [I REFUSE to update my weight trackers to go backwards.] Shortly after that I gained the typical 6-10lbs during my TOM. However, since that "period" ended on the 12th, the scale has remained virtually the same. I mean, I've been hovering between 274 and 279 for almost two weeks now! My workouts remain at 60-90 minutes of cardio (walk-aerobics, walking my dog, and the Gazelle) 4-5 times a week. Honestly, I can't commit to doing any more than that. I've been drinking nearly a gallon of water a day and following the food program. So, I'm guessing (hoping) it's the dreaded "P" word...P-L-A-T-E-A-U!! And it SUCKS!!! For the past 6 months I have developed a trend where if (1) I work out, (2) I follow the food program and (3) I drink my water, then (4) I lose weight. Simple as that. Now, it's EXTREMELY discouraging to work my ass off and see absolute NO result on the scale, or even see a negative one (weight gain). It's been so mentally taxing that I've decided that after today, I will try and go 2 weeks without weighing-in. I'm a bit of a scale junkie, so I know it'll be tough, but it's tougher to keep on track when the scale isn't moving like I want it to.
Okay, now for the good news: I'm buying a condo!!! A couple of weeks ago, my newly licensed realtor friend RJ took me to go see some condos. After viewing a couple of duds from the outside, I was kind of discouraged about the prospect of finding something decent, in a safe neighborhood in my price range. Well, the first condo we actually walked into I fell in love with. The balcony and bedroom view was of this beautiful lake and was soo incredibly soothing, that I knew I was 'home'. The kitchen had just been renovated with marble floors, granite countertops and maple cabinets. The majority of the buildings in the area are or were at one time housing for older people, so the neighborhood and street are quiet and well-kept. Well, after putting an offer and waiting on pins and needles for a week, the seller decided not to move. Apparently, the deal she made on a place in North Carolina fell through and she took the my condo off the market. Can you say disappointed???!!! Well, the following weekend we went condo hunting again and after a bit of a Situation Normal All Fucked Up (snafu), I found another condo on the same street. This one is on the other side of the street and so doesn’t have a lakefront view. This view is of the well-maintained common and pool area and of the Presidential Estates golf course. The ‘cheapest’ home on the other side of the golf course goes for $1.2 million. This particular condo needs more work than the first would have, but I’m getting it for $7K less than the other and it has already appraised for $7K more than the purchase price. And I’m actually very excited about the idea of creating the exact space I want. It’s been fun looking at paint colors and flooring options.
And everything happens for a reason. There is a positive energy/karma about the whole transaction. The current owner is an 87yr old man who’s going into a nursing home. "Jack" has lived in the condo for 35 years (Picture this: Jack looks like Mr. Burns’ grandfather with Mr. Magoo glasses and he’s so hard of hearing, you have to practically scream at him)!! The other day when my mother, my sister, Danny and I attended the inspection, Jack made a point to tell me that he’d lived very happily in the condo for many years, experiencing both lots of laughter and many tears. He said he hoped I would be as happy living there as he had been. At that moment, I felt as though he’d sort of bestowed the condo to me. It felt right. It feels right.
So, my July Challenge now has another significance: July 31st is my tentative closing date...a week from today!!! My loan has been approved and I’m simply waiting to be screened by the condo association and the opportunity to review the condo docs. In the words of the Pointer Sisters, "I’m soo excited."
UPDATES: CONGRATS MOMMY! She’s lost a total of 26.5lbs!!! CONGRATS LIL SIS, MARILYN: Friday she closed on her first property, a 2/2 condo in Orlando!! CONGRATS LIL SIS, ASHLEY: She started her very first job: Old Navy Outlet!! Can you say DISCOUNTS?!?!

Wednesday, July 05, 2006

July Challenge

Hope you all had a wonderful Fourth of July holiday! I made it through without too much damage. Hoorah! Today starts my challenge to reach 260 by July 31st. Today's weight is 269, which is 1.5lbs higher than my lowest point; my TOM is quickly approaching but the weight gain has already begun! :-(
Wish me luck!

Thursday, June 29, 2006

Another One Bites The Dust!!

Not to pat myself on the back or anything (but, of course I'm going to anyway), but I have reached my July 4th goal 5 days early!!! I am kicking some serious fat booty! Today I weighed in at 267.5. I got on the scale and looked down...and FREAKED. I got off. I got back on and looked down...and freaked AGAIN. I got off. I got back on and looked down and it said 266.5!!!!! I told myself not to get greedy and look a gift horse in the mouth, so I'm sticking with 267.5. I'm just so psyched to have broken into the '60s. After my little diet-breakdown a couple of weeks ago, this victory was a much-needed boost. It means I was able to survive and get back on track with minimal damage to and delay of my ultimate goal.

Next goal is to reach 265.5 by July 8th, which is Day 180 on NS. I know two pounds in 8 days seems a given, but my TOM is on its way. Oh, well. Nevertheless, today is a great day. Hope you all are well!

"When a goal matters enough to a person, that person will find a way to accomplish what at first seemed impossible" - Nido Qubein
(I 'stole' this quote from Tressa's blog--thanks, Tressa!!)

Sunday, June 25, 2006

Good Times II

I'm soo excited! Last night I went to the Hard Rock Seminole Casino and won $285 in less than 10 minutes!!! These pics were taken before I left for my night out. The black shirt was one I found in my laundry minutes before I got dressed. It's not my shirt, it's my sister's and IT FITS!!! Like, it even buttoned all the way down without threat of popping when I sat down. Obviously, now it's my new favorite lucky shirt!!

Good Times

My co-worker Maria and I at the parade celebrating the Miami Heat NBA Championship Title! The bottom photo is of my friend Kenny and me at Monty's.