GM Diet Day 2 – All Veggies and a Potato For Breakfast.

Summary from Day 1 – down 2 pounds!  I woke up this morning, hopped on the scale, and just smiled.  Thank god Atlanta didn’t get the better of me.  I’m almost down all the weight I gained…  Yeah for me!

Day Date Day Morn Weight (lbs) Loss/ Gain Total # of glasses of Water Daily Activity
1 29-Aug Mon. 126.1   8 10 min walk
10 min abs
2 30-Aug Tues. 124.1 (2.0) 8 40 min run
10 min abs

Today is Day 2 – all veggies and a potato for breakfast.  So after making my coffee, I cleaned a potato and stuck it in the oven.  An hour later, I had a potato with 2 pats of butter and a bit of salt and pepper.  It was delicious.  I felt full, but not too full until late afternoon.  For dinner I made myself some baked eggplant with homemade chunky tomato sauce and a big salad.  I cheated and added some cheese to the eggplant and I think that was a mistake.  About 30 minutes after eating, I got really bloated and my stomach hurt for about an hour..  the same feeling I get all the time.  I’m wondering if I’m allergic to cheese?   I’m going to eat the rest of the eggplant minus the cheese tomorrow and see how I feel.  If I don’t feel bad, then I’ll know that I don’t feel good when I eat cheese.  It would be an absolute bummer because I LOVE cheese.

I went for a run today – the first one in a month. I was slower than usual but it felt so good. The weather was perfect – it was warm out, there was a slight breeze, the sky was clear and blue.. the sun on my skin felt glorious.  I feel so much better when I exercise I don’t know why I don’t “just do it” when things get busy/crazy….  seems backwards.

I ran errands tonight after dinner so I wouldn’t be tempted to relax with a glass of wine.  It worked… and now I’m home, blogging, and getting ready for bed. 

Tomorrow, Day 3, I can have both fruits and veggies except bananas and potatoes.  I’m looking forward to my berry shakes, more mango (yum!), and the grapes I just received in my organic care package from Farm Fresh To You.  It came at the perfect time as it contains a bunch of grapes, two containers of heirloom tomatoes, an eggplant, some broccoli and lettuce. I used the eggplant and a few of the heirloom tomatoes for dinner tonight…  I’ll use the tomatoes with my beef on Days 5 & 6, and the broccoli for a stir fry on days 6 & 7…   Yum!

Alright, I’m tired.. off to bed I go.  Have a great Wednesday everyone.

GM Diet Wonder Soup – My Version.

I really like the soup that I made for this diet. I altered it slightly to add more flavor and it came out sooo delicious.  I can see myself continuing to make this soup even after the diet is long over.  This recipe has made enough for 4-6 bowls, depending on the size of your bowls.

GM Diet Wonder Soup Recipe – Paula’s Version

Ingredients:

  • Olive oil – about a tablespoon
  • Vinegar – about a tablespoon (I used red wine vinegar)
  • Onion – 1 medium sized – chopped
  • Carrot – 1 small – chopped
  • 5-6 cloves of garlic, chopped
  • Green Pepper (Capsicum) – one half – chopped
  • Tomatoes – 1 large sized – chopped
  • Cabbage – one quarter – sliced
  • 1 envelope Liptons Onion Soup Mix
  • Water – 4+ cups (to taste)
  • Salt and pepper to taste
  • Sriracha Hot Chili Sauce to taste   

Procedure:

  1. Saute the onion and carrot in the olive oil and vinegar until golden.
  2. Add the garlic and green pepper and fry some more.
  3. Add the tomato, water, and Lipton’s soup mix and bring to a boil.
  4. Add the cabbage and close lid to cook (about 10 min)
  5. Add a squirt or two of the Hot Chili Sauce (to taste)
  6. Sprinkle pepper to taste (I didn’t use salt because of the Lipton Onion Soup Mix has enough in it)
  7. Simmer on very low boil for a few a bit more until an awesome aroma arises.
  8. Stir occasionally, add as much water you need.
  9. Eat.. Its delicious!

After making this, You could easily use low/no salt vegatable stock for the water, more garlic (I don’t think there can ever be too much garlic), add other peppers (orange and red), jalepenos (for heat), etc..  I may even make this soup again and add beef for the days that I can eat beef (days 5 and 6)..

Anyway, if you are giving the diet a shot – good luck.

GM Diet Day 1 – All Fruits Except Bananas.

Today is the 1st day of my 7 day diet (GM Diet).

I weighted myself first thing in the morning as the diet suggests.  I’m at 126.1 lbs. 

I started the morning off with a stong cup of coffee (always cleans me out) and a large berry shake. I spent most of the day in front of my computer frantically trying to get work done because I have jury duty tomorrow (and potentially the rest of the week).  I did get outside for about 10 minutes and it was absolutely gorgeous – sunny and cool..

The day went by quickly –  I’m glad I was working from home.  I ate fruit all day – berry shakes, oranges, mangoes..  delicious.  I did begin to feel fuzzy/shaky/weird around 6pm, but I ate a bowl of the GM Soup and all was good. I do not miss drinking tonight – didn’t crave it like I thought I would.  Instead, I watched Millionaire Matchmaker while unpacking my suitcase and doing laundry.  It felt like a productive evening. 

Being Type A, I’m keeping track of everything in a spreadsheet ….  I can’t fit everything into this blog (I’ve documented everything I’ve eaten so far) so here is the important stuff:

Day Date Day Morn Weight (lbs) Loss/ Gain Plan # glasses of Water Daily Activity
1 29-Aug Mon. 126.1   All fruits except bananas.  8 10 min walk
10 min abs

Tomorrow is all about vegetables…  It  makes me miss My Mr. Big.  He was the best salad maker ever (among his other many talents).  There was something about the way he made a salad that made it over-the-top delicious.  As I type this, I realize that it’s not really about the salad, but about the way he took care of me.  He took pleasure in making me happy, as I did him.  He was generous in so many ways…  and salad making was just one of them.  I’ll be thinking of him all day tomorrow (not that I don’t every day.. but it will happen even more so tomorrow)…

O.k.. no nap for me today so I’m tired… I’m off to bed, get a good nights sleep and begin Day 2 with a bang!

Trying The GM Diet.

My month in Atlanta was brutal, especially on my physique.  The 3 hour time change made it almost impossible for me to work out.  I know this sounds like a lame excuse, but getting up at 7am pst is about all I can do…  If I wake up any earlier than that, I feel sick to my stomach and have on many occasions, thrown up.

I also felt bloated and uncomfortable the entire time .. I don’t know if it was the weather or what I was eating, which for the most part was the same – oatmeal in the morning, salad for lunch, low carb dinner), but I just didn’t feel good.

Anyway, the long and short of it is that I didn’t work out and I drank too much…  which has resulted in a 3 lb gain.  Of course I’m not happy out it, I had 5 lbs to lose before I left for Atlanta a month ago.  So, I’m going to try the GM Diet.  A few friends of mine have done the diet one week a year for years (they do it once a year for cleansing purposes)… and have consistently lost weight and have kept it off.  So I’m going to give it a try.  I’ll blog my progress …   

I’m actually looking forward to it because I do love fruits and veggies..  and I can substitute chicken for the beef days if I want to..  I went shopping today and purchased a bunch of fruits and vegetables… the bill came to $68… which is very low for me.  Normally its close to $100, and that’s because it usually includes alcohol…. And honestly, after all the drinking I did in Atlanta, I’m looking forward to an excuse to NOT drink.  I know, shocker. 

Wish me luck.  I’ll let you know how day 1 goes tomorrow.

Delta and United Suck Too.

I spent a weekend in Utah and was trying to get back to Atlanta …   Everything on my itinerary looked good – I booked a ticket that balanced my personal commitments with my work schedule.  However, Delta and United had different plans for me.

So now I hate both Delta and United.  I get better basic service from the bartenders at the airport bars — eye contact, a simple “I will be with you in a moment” (just a small acknowledgement that you actually SEE me and the other dozen customers waiting for your help).. And given my experience, I may just go back to AirTran.. at least they will fly an airplane in any condition. 

So, my day began with a hug and kiss from my mom, coffee and conversation with my dad, a few hours of work, then a shower.  My dad dropped me off at the SLC airport, and I was happy as a clam. I was in my own little world – remembering what a great trip I just had, bonding with my nieces…  I love them so much, every time I’m in Utah I just wished I had more time…  Ideally I’d love to live there part-time so I could be a greater part of their lives.  Yes, I was in la la land… I get thru security (even with more than 3 oz of toothpaste), and head to my gate.  Below is how the airlines fucked up my mood: 

  1. Arrive at the Delta Gate Counter in SLC – hanging around are two gate agents, a bunch of pilots and flight attendants.  Not a good sign.  I finally reach the desk and ask about switching seats, and the gate agent says “I don’t know anything, but we aren’t dealing with seat changes right now”.  I then remark, “to leave on time, you need to be boarding now, I see the airplane is here and you aren’t boarding, is something wrong?”. Her response the ENTIRE time people are asking her questions – “I can’t say”.  Flight was scheduled to depart at 1:50pm.. which is exactly what the board said until about 2:10, which then it read cancelled.  Instead of standing in line behind 300 passengers, I called Delta to change my flight.. they had nothing available, and put me on a United flight that works its way to ATL thru Chicago.  I stop off to get a glass of wine before heading to another terminal.
  2. Arrive at the United Counter in SLC – one gate agent, a bunch of pilots and flight attendants, and security were standing at the gate.  I got in line, behind the dozen or so other folks waiting to be serviced by the one gate agent who was running around like her head had been cut off.  So I turn the “hard-working” (sarcasm) TSA agents and ask “why are so many of you here?” (I hesitated to ask because I thought the guy was retarded… but I had to, that’s what I do).  They guy said that TSA had decided to “spot check” this gate (what, they don’t even trust themselves??  Talking about TSA just gets me going, a rant on them is coming soon).  There are 5 of them, and they all are overweight and look like high-school drop-outs still living their dreams in too tight uniforms (think Reno 911!), eating cashews next to the gate desk…  There is no gate agent in sight.  The woman finally comes back, starts to help folks, I finally get my turn, ask for a bit of help with seat assignments (as I have none because Delta can’t give me seat assignments on another airlines flights)… She gave me one for the immediate flight, then told me to deal with my ORD to ATL flight in ORD.  I said no, that I had been standing in line, waiting for her to help me, and I wanted a guaranteed seat.  She then started berating me about her “bad day” (sounded more like a bad life.).. something about an ex-boyfriend, a dead cat.. I dont’ know.  I just stared at her and then said (remember I’m not always nice), “You are here to help me, not give me excuses as to why you can’t help me. We all have troubles in our lives…  I won’t even start in on mine.  But I want to get to work so I can get home.  Can you help me with this?”  You know what she said?  In a very heated, high voice she says to me,  “Thanks for being such a nice person (sarcasm oozing from her tone), I’ve got too much to think about/on my mind right now to help you with future travel“… and a few other things.. then she turned around and walked away.  You know, I didn’t feel bad at all.  I got her name, and wouldn’t you know it, she is the Service Director.  Yes, this is the person who is training/setting example for others on how to treat customers…  No wonder “customer service” has all but disappeared in the airline industry.
  3. Arrive at the United Counter in Chicago.  So I do finally make it to Chicago, I get to the gate,and wouldn’t you know it, the flight was delayed.  No reason given, just delayed.  For 2 hours.  I was so exhausted, so tired, and I desperately needed to get into ATL at a decent time as my week was going to be brutal work wise.  United didn’t care – the flight was delayed until 11:30pm (it was originally an 8pm flight).  The gate agent was o.k..  didn’t look at me when I asked for a seat, but did give me a seat with no one next to me (which I specifically asked for). 

I finally arrived in ATL at 1:20am (vs. my original 7:30pm arrival time) got to the  hotel by 2am.. asleep by 2:30, then up at 7:30 …  needless to say I was exhausted.  I never made up for the lost sleep all week…  by the time Thursday (yesterday) came around, I was completely spent. 

Here is the thing.  I get that things happen.. that flights are cancelled, delayed… but when they happen AND  you get consistently horrible customer service, I just lose it.  Its it so unneccessary for rude behavior, especially from someone who is “on the job”..  So, here are a few words of wisdom I’m going to share (for free) to the airline workers of the world: 

  • Focus on the customers.  Airline managers, execs, and the like – your front line staff is the face of your company.  if someone if an asshole, then you are an asshole.  You are guilty by association.
  • Get rid of folks that make you look bad. Just do it .. unions be dammed.  If you don’t, you aren’t going to be successful.
  • Focus on basic common courtesy.  Yes, the same manners your mother taught you, extend these to your customers.
    • Look at people when they talk to you.  Not the computer, but into the eyes of the person standing in front of you.
    • Listen.  That’s right – listen. Listen for how you can help someone (not what you can’t do, what you CAN do).
    • If you are busy but see that someone is waiting, acknowledge their presence and let them know you see them.  For example, “I see you need help, I am busy at the moment but I will get to you as quickly as I can”. See how easy that is?
    • Don’t mock your counter mate or other co-workers in front of the customer.  It’s in bad taste and makes you look bad, and honestly, we don’t care what Shaniqua said/did/wore/etc., we just want to get home/to work, etc.. 

Fellow travelers, feel free to pass on other WOW that you would like to send/share with the airline industry.

O.k.. so now all I’m left with is Jet Blue, Virgin America or my own private plane. My experiences on Jet Blue and Virgin America have been awesome…  I hope they keep up the good work.

Happy To Be Home.

I’m home… slept in my bed for the first time in almost 2 weeks.  I love my bed, my home… I can’t tell you how happy I am to be home.

I spent the month in Atlanta … 4 full weeks, working on a Proof of Concept with a prospect.  I had a great team to work with – my company has the most amazing people (and the best technology).  I truly love my job.  We really rocked it – did a fantastic job, and successfully jumped another hurdle.  Although we have a lot of work to still do to close the deal, we are moving forward.  We are progressing and all signs are pointing us to a successful outcome.  Yeah for us!

On the personal side, my CA dating life was suspended.  I tried to meet up with both MM Guy and Middle Seat Airplane Guy the weekend I was home (8/12-14) but it didn’t work out (largely due to me changing our scheduled meet times). Bummed me out, but that’s the way it worked.  I do have a dinner date with MM Guy tomorrow, Saturday, and as luck would have it, the Executive Chef is available and wants to take me out on Sunday.  I am SO looking forward to a relaxing and pampered weekend.

Speaking of which, I am starting off well in this endeavour to relax and enjoy my weekend.  I’ve not done anything for work today even though I have stuff to do.  My brain just can’t take in anything today. I’m just hanging out at home, watching Sliding Doors, hanging with the cats. I am heading out for a 4pm pedicure, then drinks with CLicious.  I’m sure I’ll be to bed early tonight – I’m still on East coast time.

I’ll be home this weekend and the following week so I’ll get caught up on blog entries.. I have lots of ideas and stories to share, I just haven’t had time to get them all written out.

Have a great Friday everyone.

Weekend With Family.

I’m in Utah this weekend, enjoying some time with family.  It’s a quick trip, our annual school clothes shopping adventure.  I’ve been doing this with the girls in the family since my niece AbFab was 6 years old.  She would come out to CA and hang with me .. we would shop for school clothes. There are so many things we got for her that we both loved – the fabulous green dress with a scarf when she was 8, her down puffy coat years later.. 

This year the event occurred with my twin, my two nieces AbFab and LilDarlin’ (my twin sisters daughters), and AbFab’s two darling little ladies Mayonaise and Shanaynay.  We did all our shopping in one long afternoon.  It’s the shortest shopping trip we have ever had, but it was enough.  Mayonnaise kept calling us “The Family”, and wanted all 6 of us to do everything together.. everything.  Mayonaise is not a quiet child, I do wonder if other shoppers thought we were part of a polygamist family (we all look so much alike).  Either way, a GREAT day, we got everything we needed to go back to school in grand style. 

We shopped until 6:30pm or so, then had dinner with my parents.  It was so good to see them and spend some time with them. Even though they all live in Utah, they do not get together as often as they would like – They don’t live close and they all have family obligations (kids, jobs, you all know the drill).  Anyway, it’s nice when I come into town they make a point of getting together (to spend time with me, how awesome is that??!?) .  It was a great dinner.

After dinner, AbFab and my twin went home, and my niece LilDarlin’ and I watched the little ladies.  I booked a hotel with a pool so that we could swim (and boy did we ever!).  It was late by the time we got to the room, so we just did girls stuff (manicure and pedicure, chit-chat, etc).. .   We had a great time at “Paula’s House” (that’s what Mayonaise calls the hotel) – Girls will probably remember painting fingers and toes, swimming, and jumping on the bed the most.. 

The next morning we got up early and swam for almost 2 hours!  We got ready and then headed over to McDonald’s for fries and Payland, finally making it home around 3pm.   LilDarlin’ and I relaxed on the couch for a while… then off we went to the Family Dollar for a few things..  AbFab made a great dinner, and after the kids went to bed, AbFab, LilDarlin’ and I hung out and reviewing pictures of past experiences.   AbFab left for work (she works graveyards) and put LilDarlin’ and I “in charge” again….  And we did not disappoint!

We got up early in the morning, hung out, and enjoyed each others company.  Kids had Otter Pops while I had my coffee, then had yogurt and granola for breakfast.. pizza for snack all before noon.  It is so fun being the Aunt – I think that anything within reason is o.k. as long as they treat each other with love and respect.. so a few popsicles during their morning ritual will not kill them.

Anyway, I did have to leave and it was hard. Very hard.  I cried as I drove to my parents house.  I love all te kids – it’s so hard to not be around as much as I would like to be.  But it is what it is, and I will be back in a few months.  I do have to say, the weekend would NOT have been over the top fun if LilDarlin’ wasn’t with me – she is the coolest aunt in the world to the girls – they idolize her and she loves them to pieces back.  She helped me with their schedules, guiding me on the best way to take care of them…  She is such a sweet, loving,  and kind person.  She is  heading into the 6th grade with more wisdom and independence than I’ve seen in most 6th graders. 

I did arrive to my parents house at a reasonable hour, had some time to catch up with my parents.  I love coming home and catching up with my parents.  My mom always makes me a very fondly remembered “favorite meal” and my dad gives me the update on his store – he owns and manages a small computer business in Utah.  He’s just moved into a new building and is working hard at building up business at his new location.  My mom made me meatloaf with a baked potato and canned green beans.  I loved this meal growing up, and it tasted sooooooooooooooo good this evening.  She even made one of my favorites for dessert – brownies!  We had a great dinner, great conversation, and it’s just so good to see my parents.

Ok.. I’m exhausted, I’m heading to bed in a few minutes. I have a few blogs to write about specific events/experiences.. I will try to get to these on the airplane.. .. I’m heading back to Atlanta for my last week of on-site support for the immediate time being.

Good night folks.