Nov 042013
 

How was everyone’s Halloween? Did you survive the candy holiday? Did you eat too much of it or do you have a success story to share?

I did okay regarding Halloween candy. This year was pretty low-key. Instead of celebrating at my friend’s house we stayed home. We had leftover stew and passed out candy to the trick-or-treaters. We used to have TONS of kids. Each year it’s less and less. Michael bought a bag of candy from Costco and we ended up having almost half of it left over. I had four pieces of candy, was over my calories for the day but still under 2,000 for the day. Not too bad! Of course I’ve been eating the candy ever since….But still within my daily calories. I won’t lie, I may have substituted some healthy snacks with candy…

I wasn’t sure how Bella would do on Halloween. It seemed like a recipe for disaster. She’s anxious with new people and strangers that come to the door; our doorbell is obnoxiously loud; and I thought the kids in costumes might scare her. Actually Bella did well! She barked at the first group of kids but then she did okay. She only barked one other time at the youngest and smallest kid that came to our door, which sucked because I felt badly for the little girl! I was glad Bella chilled out and did well.

This post is a roundup of some things I’ve talked about recently. Here goes:

Acne

Last we talked, I was considering accutane and lots of readers weighed in with their experiences. It was pretty mixed but leaning more towards the positives. I was still undecided. Increasing my acne medicine and taking antibiotics for almost 2 months cleared it up. I also changed my birth control to one that is supposed to help acne. So far so good. I’m not going to do accutane any time soon. I want to see if this current stage of no breakouts will stick around for awhile.

The Pets Adjusting

How are the animals adjusting? We brought Bella home on October 3rd and it’s been a little over a month now. We’ve had some really good moments where Fat Kitty seemed like was adjusting. One particular evening I sat on the bed with the kitty and Bella laid on the floor in front of us and the three of us watched TV for a long time without any hissing or growling!

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We’ve also had some low points and sadly, Fat Kitty is still bent out of shape and posturing. He paces in the hallway or sits in the office doorway where his food is and hisses at Bella. Bella will lay down in the hallway on the other side of the dog gate and just look at him.

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The most recent news was that Maya came out from under the bed and stood motionless in the bedroom. Bella came right up to her and Maya didn’t seem bothered in the least. Maya didn’t run or hiss or look scared! That was great. Bella also lost interest in Maya quickly because Fat Kitty is the one she wants! He’s made it this way with his hissing and growling at Bella. SIGH. The above picture is of Fat Kitty looking at Bella’s tail.

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I guess it really will just take time!

Bella’s Training

Bella is SO smart! I love how quickly she catches on to things. We’ve been working with a trainer and each week we have homework. We’ve mastered “Leave It” and some of the other commands. One thing we worked on was her sitting and waiting until I put her food dish on the floor and tell her to eat. She does it now without me even having to say “sit.”

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We’ve had 2 sessions with the trainer so far and they have gone great. It’s so much fun training Bella! It’s cool to see her catch onto it so fast.

We are currently working on a few variations of “Leave It.” The first is putting her on the leash and going for a walk and if she sees something she shouldn’t play with, we say “Leave It”, click the clicker and give her a treat as we walk past it. Then she gets another treat is she keeps “leaving it.” This will be really helpful in the future when she gets near the kitties. I’ve used it a few times now when she got too close to Fat Kitty. She wasn’t doing anything to the cat, mostly just curious, but I could tell Fat Kitty was going to get pissy and I stepped in.

The other variation is an eye contact exercise. She sits in front of us, then I hold a treat in my hand up high away from my face. I just stand there until she breaks the stare with the treat and looks at me. Once she looks at me I click the clicker and she gets a treat. It’s already working much better! She doesn’t quite “GET IT” but she’s looking at me faster than when we first started the exercise. At some point I will be able to tell that she gets that she’s supposed to look at me before she gets a treat.

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Another fun exercise we have to work on this week is telling her to go to her bed. We put the dog bed on the floor and stand near it. Whenever she goes and sits on the bed, she gets a click and a treat. It’s supposed to train her to go to her bed when we tell her. This will be helpful when we have people over and she needs to  calm down.

Wedding Stuff

I got the dress! And it was a big relief. One more thing to cross off the list. I’m currently talking flowers with several different florists. One is a family friend and the others are just local florists. I don’t imagine we’ll make a decision on that any time soon.

Also, still haven’t gotten engagement photos done. It’s been cancelled three times now. Once due to illness, twice due to inclement weather. It’s like we’re cursed. I’m really getting annoyed at this point! I’m ready to get the pictures done and move on to the next step: the save the dates! Come on weather! Improve for us!

So that’s about it right now. Life has been extra busy lately it seems. What’s new with all of you?

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Oct 242013
 

It’s that time again.

“Fun Sized” candies are everywhere. In the grocery store, in your house, at the office…So what happens when sugar and candy is your trigger food?

This has always been a hard time of year for me. I love candy. I love chocolate specifically. And Halloween, Christmas…those are all holidays that revolve around bagged candy!

So what do you do to resist the temptations? Here are my tips:

1. Out of sight, out of mind. Don’t keep the bowl of candy within reach or eyesight. If it’s packed away in the pantry and not noticeable, maybe you’ll forget about it.

2. Buy bags of candy that you don’t like. I actually do dislike a lot of candy. Milky Ways, Twizzlers, Baby Ruth, Whoppers, chewy caramels…Yuck. On the other hand, I CANNOT have mini Butterfingers, 5th Avenue bars, Candy Corns, or Snickers in the house. Those are my favorites.

3. Skip the candy. You could be that house that passes out boxes of raisins or tooth brushes…but be prepared to have your house toilet-papered.  Or fire-bombed. :)

4. Buy less. Instead of buying a bunch of Costco sized candy bags, buy one bag and when the candy is gone go to bed. Sorry kiddos, this candy store isn’t open all night.

5. Wait until the last minute to buy. Having a big bag of candy in the house for several weeks is just asking for trouble.

6. Put some candy in a bowl on the porch and then go for a walk. You get some exercise, resist eating candy, and get to see the cute kiddos trick-or-treating.

7. Freeze the leftover candy. I used to put the remaining candy bars in the freezer and take one or two out at a time. Once they defrosted, some time had passed and I wasn’t going to gorge myself.

8. Eat a big, healthy dinner before it’s time to pass out candy. Eat a lot of vegetables and food with fiber in it to fill you up.

Finally, don’t beat yourself up if you do indulge. Chances are the fun sized candy you ate was about 100 calories a pop so if you had a few it’s not the end of the world.

QUESTION: What tip or trick do you use to avoid overeating on Halloween?

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