Archive for March, 2017

Cruising and Rocking!!!!

Tuesday, March 28th, 2017

First off… I did not write Addiction to Love which is what you find when you “google” SusanMcCarthyPeabody!!!!  Second… Behind me and one deck down the ship dance team is dancing to Great Balls of Fire so I might wander a little!  Dancing and singing.  We are somewhere in the Caribbean Sea heading for Antigua tomorrow or the next day.  We have already settled into a routine… Up for coffee: I am now drinking herbal tea as I’ve given up caffeine, to breakfast in the dining room. Today our partners were Peter and Karen Skipp who sat next to a couple from Quebec so Peter was able to share their travels almost every summer to Quebec and Montreal! I sat next to an ex Army guy and his wife from Spain and we talked about England where he was based as an American on an English base for 3 1/2 years!!!  I shared our love for England and our recent visit to Slapton Sands where Eisenhower and Monty Montgomery trained American troops for the invasion of Normandy.   Quite lively conversation. After breakfast we all headed for the pool and Susie and Karen jumped in for an hour of “water aerobics” old lady style in a very wavy pool as it is very choppy and the ship is rockin’ and rollin’. We “Finished” in the hot tub, and I walked 3 rounds of the entire ship on the 11th deck… it is a long walk from bow to stern and in the wind I was sometimes fighting to make headway!!!!  Shower and head for lunch. Rest, reading, and a lecture on Antigua. Now we need to get ready for formal night!  Buttons and bows. Have a wonderful week and I’ll talk later when we get to Antigua!!!  God bless you.

Before we left Miami I was cleaning out files and I brought along some pages I culled from a file called “diet”. …  Here’s a “fat hint” : Myth: part skim cheeses are low in fat… Not necessarily so… Ricotta and mozzarella can be called part skim…but really whole milk mozzarella 1 oz has 68 % of calories from fat and “part skim” is 56 % calories from fat. same with ricotta: whole milk ricotta is 67% calories from fat and part skim is 53 % calories from fat.   In my opinion enjoy the taste and texture and get the whole variety. You save some calories and grams of fat with the part skim type but you will be so satisfied with the creaminess and taste of the whole variety.  I do the same with cottage cheese and get the 4% rather than the skim or fat free. We need a little fat.  Just get up and exercise a little!!!!

Saying Goodbye

Sunday, March 26th, 2017

When we get to my age… many family members have passed away or are ready to go… We expect frailty in our 80s and so we live hearty in our 70s and hope for the best. My mother lived to 97 years old and I only saw her failing in the last year. My sister and niece fully expected Mom to live to 100. I say, “You go there if you can!!!” When one dies early, we cry out to the Lord and mourn with fierce disunderstanding. I made up that word… we DON’T understand the dissonance of early death of the young and vigorous. My cousin who is married to a WWF promoter and who lived a vital energetic life full of exciting events was cut down as she rode on her Vespa to exercise at the gym. She never had a chance in that encounter with a car who ran her down… Pitched off into the road, on her head, she never recovered. The family has donated her organs to those in need. I wrote my cousin Jan a short note as she lay dying: “For cousin Jan: Look! See the face of God. Heaven is a gift of life. Meet your Father and your Mother. Earth has no sorrow that heaven can’t heal. Jesus heals the blind man. Jesus heals the Samaritan woman at the well. Jesus raises Lazarus from the dead. Accept the light you were made for. God bless you.” The Mother and Father I refer to are God our Creator and the Blessed Mother who was given to John for protection, and who in turn, protects us as a mother. This is not comforting pablum. Believe it or not… Believe and we are saved. Don’t believe and get to heaven and realize we denied a truth and Jesus doesn’t know us. God bless you Jan and God bless all of us.

Thank you Lord!

Sunday, March 19th, 2017

I just was outside and I realized what a beautiful day it is!!! I threw up my arms to the sky and sang out “Thank You Lord for this beautiful day!!!” I am sure the Lord who created everything likes a compliment now and then…. On Juice Plus and with walking and being diligent against carbs and sugars, I’ve lost 5 pounds since my doctor told me if I lost a few pounds my A1C would go down. I feel great and haven’t had coffee in a few weeks. Don’t need it. I drink a lot lot lot of water so you watch me scurry off to pee a lot too. Tomorrow we’ll make a “renters visit” to the Keys to paint garage doors that are getting rusty and shore up a window unit air conditioner. Then… we start preparing for the 21 day cruising experience on the Royal Caribbean Serenade that we will partially share with friends Peter and Karen Skipp. Destination Southern Caribbean and lots of islands coming up. On Chuck’s birthday, April 17, we will be home again to settle in and start some hobbies like painting and do some volunteer work at my church St. Timothy. Happy Sunday and God bless you!!!!

helping others!

Tuesday, March 14th, 2017

Part of being a friend is doing the heavy work. Chuck and I have been carrying loads of household goods to Huntington Island for friends Peter and Karen who are leaving Miami. Chuck and I might be the last to leave Miami… And it might just be to our niches on Big Pine Key. That sounds gruesome but this lake house could be our final home. I hope I don’t ever have to go into a nursing home… Rather live out our last days here on the lake. We will be driving up to Hutchinson Island today with van and trailer full. Unload, take out some shelving units that I’ll be putting in the art room replacing 2 file cabinets. Hope to get a dip in the club house pool and head home tomorrow.

Today might be the last of our 10 day Shred. We have been doing 2 smoothies and keeping dairy, gluten, caffeine and alcohol free… Walking almost every day huffing and puffing!!! Lost 4 1/2 pounds. Will continue to keep a clean diet and will continue to help others. Last night at Emmaus meeting we prayed a beautiful Rosary. Each decade began with meditations of Mary speaking. Can you imagine the Annunciation, the visit to Elizabeth, the birth of Jesus, the presentation in the Temple and then losing Jesus at 12 years old? Back to the Temple to speak with his Father. Can you imagine seeing those events in a meditation with Mary speaking? Keep Mary close… She has been through all the events of Motherhood. She has kissed the face of God. God bless you.

5.0 or bust!

Sunday, March 12th, 2017

I don’t have a fit bit but I do have an app on my phone that counts my steps and miles and today I determined to get over the 10,000 step mark and … I did!!! 11039 steps - 4.8 miles. Finished at a run in the rain! I’m still on the Juice Plus program with 2 smoothies a day and gluten, caffeine and dairy free. Free of fatigue. Free of lassitude. Yesterday I was revved!!!! I shopped and prepared a dinner for 8 - worked all day long just preparing … At the very end of the day I ate chicken, veggies and fruit while my guests noshed on ham and chicken, sweet and white potatoes with butter and sour cream, veggies, rolls with butter, ice cream and fruit. I did have 3 glasses of prosecco, and I also drank a lot of water. I have to research gluten and dairy free and make sure I’m getting all I need for an old lady. Although I feel really good and along with the smoothies we take 6 capsules of fruit and vegetable based supplements. In the past, if I prepped for a party like that, I’d be exhausted by 4pm and want a nap and maybe lay down but be too tired to sleep. That nap reflex is also not in tune with our circadian rhythms….. Recently a sleep psychologist explained that I was crawling into bed, tired, but body wasn’t ready for sleep. I had to set a routine and stick to it. It’s working…. I get into bed … IF I am sleepy… at 1030 pm and get up at 7am. That is working. Sometimes I’m wide awake at 10:30 pm so I sit up reading. All seems well. OK! Today is Sunday and I hope you all had a good holy day and spent some time with the Lord. God bless you.

“only 2 1/2 miles today”

Thursday, March 9th, 2017

I think it’s interesting that as a former slug, I think walking “only 2 1/2 miles” is not enough. I for one am proud of myself!!! I went with friend Diane today to put down a deposit for a respite care bed for Dot, Diane’s Mom, for 3 months when Dick and Diane go on a long motorcycle/camping holiday. It’s really impossible for Dot to get around in their camper any more, let alone getting up into the camper… Dot is a beautiful 95 years old. My Mom loved to travel, but at the end she couldn’t stay in a room alone and she really needed someone to stay with her. Age in the 90s is precarious as our bones get achy and won’t do what we need and oxygen is scarce… I’m doing a lot right now and will continue as long as possible. You too!!!

Yesterday after working in the garden I was hungry at 4pm. Normally I’m not hungry even for dinner. So I drank water and waited until the magic 6pm hour. But my coach, Julia, the wonder Mom of 2 small ones under 3, tells me i have to eat!!! The program we are on, Juice Plus with the smoothies, extra protein, nuts and beans, and veggies veggies veggies fruits fruits fruits revs up our metabolism and makes our bellies rumble for more food. I’m happy. So today when I was hungry again Julia gave me a recipe for little peanut butter balls that you keep in the freezer and eat when the hungries hit (who ever heard of a “diet” “allowing” peanut butter, oatmeal, and honey????). I was in a hurry, and I wanted my snack “right now” so I could get outside and paint a chair, so I short circuited her recipe and spread some honey and oatmeal on 1/2 a banana and ate that. Julia will shake her head at her renegade friend. I put the other 1/2 banana in the freezer for tonight’s smoothie. All’s well here at cruise central. I’m off to make salad and a smoothie. Stay kind. God bless you.

Tired all the time?

Wednesday, March 8th, 2017

One of you wrote to me that you are tired and despondent… Well so was I. I think sometimes bad things happen in the world that frighten and hurt us, distract us from doing good for ourselves. We are aging and slowing down and if we don’t adjust our diets and exercise we’ll go down that rabbit hole into old age. I’ve actually not had coffee, bread, cheese, (all mainstays!!!) since Sunday and I’m not sluggish and sleepy. In fact I’m more awake. I start my day with warm water with lemon in it, and I’m stuffed with a breakfast smoothie of strawberries, blueberries, Silk Almond milk (unsweetened), 1/2 banana, protein powder and ice. A blenderfull fills about 2 glasses. I’m excited about working in the yard and in my office. As usual things have piled up, and I’m on the attack! We are getting new shelving and I’m getting rid of ugly file cabinets in art room. Yesterday I made 2 Home Depot runs to buy mulch. I resisted the young men who wanted to help me carry the bags of mulch… I promised them: “I need the exercise!” After lifting 15 bags of mulch out of the store, into my car and out of my car, and spreading it, I have a beautiful front yard. I’m off now to dig weeds and clean up my back yard. Need more mulch. Full of energy. Positive. If I get grumpy and think, “He’s mean; I’m mistreated.” I just say, “Get over it, get going on your own stuff.” Believe me, he’s not mean!!! And I’m not a victim! What happened? Maybe this is the big “turning 70 year,” and I’m not about to give in to old age just yet. So, let us focus on health and being kind. Loving others as God wills doesn’t hurt. God bless you.

We get along with a little help from our friends…

Monday, March 6th, 2017

Remember this line from a Beatles song… so long ago? I remembering singing it … in younger days, in gentler, kinder times… Actually we can still depend on friends. I have always thought I could take care of myself. I think I am an independent thinker and I know what’s best for me. But do I always DO what’s best for me? Several times in the past year, when I disobeyed doctor’s orders about advice and medicines my very kind doctor has prescribed, my very kind and handsome doctor has looked at me gently and asked… “Do you WANT to have a stroke?… Do you WANT to get diabetes?” Inside my obdurate brain the naughty Susie whispers, “No, but I don’t want to take medicine either; I can cure myself; I don’t want to do what anyone says…” I use the word obdurate. Isn’t that an interesting word? Reminds me of stone… It’s stubborn and unwilling to be flexible or malleable. Delightful word!!! Anyhow. I finally agreed with the good doctor that I wasn’t going to get my cholesterol down all by myself, and my “bad” cholesterol (LDL) was climbing. But a small amount of statin has the cholesterol numbers under control and the “numbers are good”. Now about the A1C. That has been climbing and the doctor who is so happy with my obedience with the statin, well he doesn’t want to be too pushy … so he says, “lose a few pounds and the A1C will go down.” OH? Yeah? Well I have a history of losing a few pounds, and Chuck and I just go on more cruises. Boy oh boy do we live too well. I am an expert at losing 10 and gaining 12. That is the way it’s been for the past few years and “at our age” it isn’t so easy is it? So enter now a new phase.

Young mother Julia Paparelli and her mom Kathy have been suggesting I try Juice Plus a program of smoothies and loads of fruits and vegetables that also cuts out dairy, gluten, and sugar on occasional 10 day “shreds”. Kathy has been on Juice Plus for 20 years, and she never gained the weight one might expect on a mother of 4 who has reached the “age of retirement”… and Julia with 2 children, and her lovely little sister, are both slim and and all are healthy healthy. But I said no to them. No to smoothies and protein supplements. Back to the doctor’s office for a moment. When I suggested to our doctor that it’s impossible for Chuck and I to lose weight… we live too well and eat too much ice cream and pie… to the exclusion of fruits and vegetables… he said… “Do you like blueberries?” “Yes, on pie with ice cream…” we guiltily answered. “Why not smoothies?” he asked. “Hmmmmmmm,” I mused, looking at my husband, fatly, “Would you like a smoothie with blue berries, banana, and strawberries?” Sure! So we began. Frozen, milky, fruity smoothies replace ice cream. Then Julia suggested Juice Plus for greater nutrition. I started the Juice Plus this weekend and it’s delicious. Silk Almond Milk, protein shake loaded with fruit. You can add in oatmeal, nuts, peanut butter, spices. YUM. Chocolate or vanilla. All there. So I began today in serious “following.” For 10 days, no dairy, no gluten, no sugars only 2 protein shakes, all the fruits and veggies I want, and a whole lot of whole foods. Nothing processed, no dairy, no breads or glutens. These last items, the “no” items are eliminated so the body can just be natural… I’ve read many times that the body is not made to drink milk after childhood… and the “no added sugar” is a no brainer. I rarely get fruit or veggies or at least not enough… so let’s see how the digestion improves. I’ve set a goal to lose 10 pounds in weight this month… That gets me closer to goal weight and helps me fit better into 2 new slinky dresses I bought for cruising at the end of March. If anyone is interested…. Look up Juice Plus and you will see both sides of the “health food argument”. I was firmly on the “Won’t do it” side, but I also was gaining weight, A1C climbing, energy low… so I’m going to try it. When I get my next blood work if weight is off and A1C is back in the “normal range,” then what will we conclude? I’ll keep you posted. OH! Need to exercise too. And I’m doing that!!! 3 miles a day. Try to walk daily. Let’s get healthy!!! Keep me posted on changes you make. Love and God bless you!!!!