Lose weight with me – my journey

I stepped on the scale this weekend and I did not like what I saw.

Last year the same thing happened to me (although the number was higher). So I bought myself a FitBit Alta, downloaded MyFitness Pal and started tracking my steps and my calories. It worked. I lost 10 pounds in a few months and kept them off. Until I went to Cancun for Christmas with my family.

We stayed at the Hyatt Ziva (amazing, amazing resort) using points I’d amassed from learning how to use credit cards. It was fantastic, but, it’s also all inclusive.

The back pool at the Hyatt Ziva in Cancun at sunset.



How can you resist this amazing selection of sweets? It’s free and open all day and night.

(This is the “sweets” restaurant. Just take what you want. As much as you want. Whenever you want.) 

I gained five pounds on that trip, and I’ve been gaining ever since. I’m almost back to where I was when I started my FitBit journey and that’s not ok. I figured I could just do what I do – eat and sew and work 8 hours a day sitting at a desk, maybe walk a little – and I’d lose the weight. Nope. That’s not the way it works. Now I weigh more than when I came back from Cancun 6 months ago and something has to be done.

So I’m back on a mission to lose weight. I’m using my Bullet Journal, my FitBit and MyFitness Pal. I started on Sunday, June 11 at 148 pounds. Here I am on a 3.5-mile walk. I did 20k steps that day. I’ve started doing a 31-day yoga challenge on YouTube with Yoga by Adrienne. I like her style.

I’m also watching what I eat. Here’s what  I ate for lunch yesterday (I’ve been eating it every day since Sunday and today is the last day. Chickpea salad with tomato, avocado, red onion, tuna, and spinach. (It had some chunks of fresh mozzarella in there but I think my daughter ate them all.) Here’s the recipe to use as a base. Do like I do and embellish with what you like.

If you’ve got good food recipes, exercise ideas, or any suggestions for helping me lose 10 pounds, please share below! Look forward to sharing my journey with you.


Bullet journals: an analog organizer for today’s digital world

I originally wrote this story for the News & Observer. It was published January 6, 2017.

In an age when there’s an app for everything, pen, and paper organizers are where it’s at.

We’re not talking fancy expensive planners (although those are pretty popular these days too). One of the most popular ways to organize your life starts with a simple blank notebook and an equally simple system for keeping track of what you want to keep track of. It’s called the bullet journal.

Continue reading “Bullet journals: an analog organizer for today’s digital world”

Food themed books to read

Since I love cooking and reading, it makes perfect sense that I love to read books that have a foodie theme. I’ve already read many. My favorites include The Hundred-Foot Journey, Kitchen Confidential, Heat, and Blood Bones and Butter. I wasn’t crazy about Ruth Reichl’s Garlic and Sapphires — about her life as a restaurant critic – although it sounded like it would be good.

I recently joined the Reese Witherspoon book club on Facebook, and was thrilled when someone asked for other food-themed books. You’ll find a real collection here, everything from romances and mysteries, to memoirs, investigative pieces, and comic relief.

Have you read any of these? If so, let me know which one I should start with. Have more to share that I missed? Put them in the comments.

Continue reading “Food themed books to read”

Quilted journal cover for my bullet journal

I spend a lot of time on my phone, and it’s time to break the habit. When I heard about the bullet journal, I knew that would be a good first step.

A bullet journal follows a simple pattern. It’s contained in a blank notebook of your choosing. It starts with an index, which lets you track what you are jotting down on your pages (all pages in your journal are numbered). That’s followed by a future log, a monthly overview, and your daily tasks, notes, events and reminders. You create a key to remind yourself of the symbols you are using to track your information. You can find all the details about setting up a bullet journal at bulletjournal.com.

Continue reading “Quilted journal cover for my bullet journal”