Tuesday, December 30, 2014

I love frosty winter mornings

This morning, for the first time in forever, I went for a solo walk just for pleasure - no shopping, chores, post offices, nothing but walking to walk. It was lovely! I walked to, and then around, a local park. It's not particularly special as parks go, especially in the winter, but it was just so nice to feel light without a rucksack and to be able to just pick a path to follow at random without having a destination in mind or a set time you fit it into. I need to do more of that!
In the afternoon we watched Miranda Hart's stand up show,  which was hilarious, and then I did a very little shopping. In total I walked about 6 miles.

Food today:
Breakfast: eggs scrambled with bacon, mushrooms and leek
Lunch: homemade chunky turkey and veg soup
Dinner: massive bowl of salad with gammon, egg and a tiny bit of cheese
Snacks: dates and Greek yogurt

Monday, December 29, 2014

Hi, Merry Christmas, Happy New Year etc

I didn't do Christmas, just time off at home. Just to be clear that I wasn't doing Christmas I cooked a 'Chinese takeaway' on the big day even though I had a turkey in the freezer :-)

I've mostly eaten really well,  but have drunk more alcohol than I intended - it was medicinal due to hurting my back the other day boo hoo it's still hurting like hell . However we've spent the time on housework & decluttering and the bad back has enforced plenty of breaks so silver linings..  Also I've walked at least 2 miles - often 6 or 7 - every day in the delightfully fresh air.

On the 27th I was supposed to be going up to Lincolnshire to visit my Dad but very reluctantly cancelled when the ridiculously named weather bomb hit - not a good time to drive most of the way through England particularly remembering the untreated dodgy roads (and ditches!)  up that way.  As a result I've been making up my menu as I go because I expected to be away,  and I weakened /went insane on the 27th and was driven by starvation +lack of inspiration into order takeaway pizza :-0

Ah well,  enough rambling,  I'm not going to bother with a meal by meal / walk by walk breakdown of half the week. I'm not depressed despite the back,  my eye was pain free till today but much better even today,  and 2014 - which was not a great year for me - is nearly over.
So pass the beer!!!

Saturday, December 27, 2014

Protective Style Lookbook || Flat Twist Updo with Twist Out Bangs

By popular demand, this is a series showcasing various protective hair styles.  Protective styling does not have to be boring. :o)

Model: Glamazini

Difficulty level: 2/5

Description: Flat twists pinned up with twist-out bangs.

Product Review || OGX (Formerly Organix) Brazilian Keratin Therapy Conditioner

NOTE:  This product was purchased at Target.

Purpose: "... strengthen and soften the hair, ... smooth the cuticle for straight, strong tresses, adding a brilliant glow and luminescent shine ..."

Ingredients: Water (Aqua), Behentrimonium Chloride, Cetyl Alcohol, Glycol Stearate, Glycerin, Dimethicone, Cetearyl Alcohol, Ceteareth-20, Parfum, Hydrolyzed Keratin (Protein), Theobroma Cacao (Cocoa Butter) Extract, Cocos Nucifera (Coconut) Oil, Persea Gratissima (Avocado) Oil, Aloe Barbadensis (Aloe Leaf) Extract, Panthenol, Tetrasodium EDTA, DMDM Hydantoin, Methylchloroisothiazolinone, Methylisothiazolinone, Blue 1, Red 40, Yellow 5.

Number of trials: numerous over the course of months

How I used it:
Applied to freshly washed hair.
Waited for 3-5 minutes (as instructed).
Then rinsed.


Organix products are usually a miss for me, but this one has actually been a hit.  To me, it is comparable to Aphogee 2-Minute Keratin Reconstructor in effectiveness.  It leaves my hair just as moisturized and strengthened.  The smell is also very pleasant, like a toned down cocoa butter scent.  I really like to use this product prior to flat ironing because the end result is well-conditioned,  super smooth, shiny hair.  This conditioner has the potential to become a regular one in my stash, though Aphogee 2-Minute is still my numero uno.

PROS: a little goes a long way; pleasant cocoa butter smell; thick, rich consistency; leaves hair moisturized, strengthened, and smooth
CONS: none

RATING: Overall, I give the OGX (Formerly Organix) Brazilian Keratin Therapy Conditioner 5 out of 5 stars.  

This product is ideal for those who:
- experience a little (but not severe) breakage and splits
- heat straighten their hair

Wednesday, December 24, 2014

No more work this year

I finished work at 10pm am today - and worked from home before that. Now off till the 5th of January. I celebrated with beer. I also walked just under 7 miles, so I earned the beer :-)

Food today:
Breakfast : 2 poached eggs served on a couple of slices of gammon
Lunch: cream of celeriac soup
Dinner : homemade beef & mustard burgers served in lettuce wraps with oven chips - potato & sweet potato.
Snacks : 2 chocolates & a few Sesame peanuts. Soooo  good....

Tuesday, December 23, 2014

The other 20%

I was hungrier today and needed a second snack. Got to be adaptable I guess. 
Today my mother & father in law sent us a Christmas hamper so I ate some carbs (quite a few actually).  Chocolate cake,  Sesame peanuts, fudge,  flapjack & crisps.  To be fair to me,  only small bits of everything except the chocolate cake. I feel a little regret because I expect the gluten in the cake (they can't get their heads around the gluten thing) to have some consequences tomorrow. But, while I somewhat wish they didn't feel the need to show their love through calories it was all yummy (especially the peanuts OMG OMG OMG) and I didn't go overboard,  so.. Eh. 

Food today :
Breakfast: eggs scrambled with bacon, mushrooms and tomatoes 
Lunch: Salad with cold chicken thighs 
Dinner: fresh roasted haddock with roasted Brussels sprouts and cake and good tasting things 
Snacks: Greek yogurt, Pork scratchings 

Monday, December 22, 2014

Subtle messages...

My eye is trying to tell me something:

Stop working in IT.
Easier said than done, but that's definitely the message. I worked yesterday morning (in my own home,  by natural light) and my eye ached. It didn't on Saturday. So there it is. Must retire asap and become a kept woman. All I have to do is persuade M he wants to work more so I can stop. I can see some problems in that...
On Saturday I walked about 6 miles and ate really well. I also drank some whisky and discovered it's way more effective at stopping my eye aching than otc painkillers. So I did that again on Sunday. On Saturday I was so tired that I fell asleep watching Elysium. Don't really feel I missed much. Yesterday I watched Godzilla without falling asleep at all. Also yesterday we had a takeaway Kebab for dinner.  I meant to make a salad to go with it but then spent the time on the phone to my Dad so I ate chips instead. I felt stuffed & a bit bloated and didn't want much breakfast this morning. I think overall I'm getting better at the moment at judging how hungry I am and how much food I need most of the time, but maybe the carbs bypass that a bit as I haven't felt like that after a meal for a little while. I considered eating a proper breakfast this morning before leaving the house (I'm paranoid about cooking/eating eggs at work because of the smell so that was the only opportunity)  but decided against it given that I really didn't want it and I'm glad that I did.
At lunchtime I managed to fit in a walk and after work I had to collect a repeat prescription from the clinic before they close at Christmas, so in total I walked about 5 miles today - not bad for a work day. I'm still frustrated by only walking so I'll probably try the climber again soon. Possibly while I'm off work since I'm struggling with early mornings at the moment.

Food today :
Breakfast: cashews
Lunch: Salad with cold meat
Dinner: chicken thighs with roasted Brussels sprouts
Snacks: Greek yogurt,  cold meat

Friday, December 19, 2014

My eye is good. Despite the aching like a bastard

Well, I'm pleased to announce my eye is not about to explode any time soon. The retina is still flat, the tear is still sealed, the white is very white, the buckle is still being a buckle, the pressure in the eye is fine. 
Of course that means they just can't tell me why, after months of no pain at all its suddenly started aching all day every day. Well, nearly all day most days anyway,  and THAT in turn means no concrete advice or treatment.  He basically advised me to try hot compresses and artificial tears eyebrows you hopefully alleviate the symptoms. I guess the good thing is he couldn't see anything wrong,  as opposed I can stop panicking and just get on with taking pain killers when it aches. 
You may have picked up on the fact that when I go to the hospital I get stressed, and therefore it's become an excuse to over eat /binge. Well,  not today!  Because I knew I'd be walking my 4 miles of hospital walking this morning I had a larger lunch than usual,  and a latte at the station while waiting for the train. Then nothing else to eat or drink in Reading.  Nothing!!!  Else!!!  
I wasn't hungry but I also wasn't craving distraction or comfort or relief-because-my-eye-isn't-exploding food. In fact I was home by ten thirty and didn't eat anything else till lunchtime,  and even ate a smaller lunch than usual. 
Work was annoyingly busy,  which definitely helped with the not eating extra food, because we're supposed to be re-deploying last weekend's failed deployment on Sunday. So what was supposed to be a light say of time of in lieu in the morning and relaxed afternoon working turned into a mad rush that went on till an hour and a quarter later than my usual finishing time.  WTF ?? I'm knackered now,  despite my overexcited punctuation, and in need of an early night. 
Oh yes,  and on top of all that excitement,  we just handed in our notice at the current rental and agreed to take a smaller place a few miles away - so we'll be moving house in February. Now I have to sell more of our stuff... 

Food today :
Breakfast: saut�ed pork mince, onion & peppers topped with fried egg 
Lunch: homemade cream of mushroom soup. 
Dinner: lamb's heart in Sweet and Sour Sauce with sweet potato noodles 
Snacks: a tiny amount of peanut butter 

Thursday, December 18, 2014

People with nerf guns should be shot

Today at work was pretty rubbish.  I went in to the office because my eye was feeling better and also because I needed to grab a disk to test. Unfortunately today was Christmas lunch day (I wasn't going) and Secret Santa day (wasn't taking part in that either.  Just call me the Grinch / Scrooge - I can take it) It was also a really busy day for me as in addition to testing the disk already mentioned I was supposed to be testing a fix for last weekend's deployment so we could go again this Sunday.  So I struggled all morning to set up the necessary data and failed miserably. Then all the developers on the project took a 2.5 hour lunch when I kind of needed them.  Then 20 minutes after they got back the secret santa happened - and almost everybody got given nerf guns or crossbows so I spent 40 minutes trying to achieve something while sitting in a very annoying battle.  Honestly I might have found it funny had I not had do much to do. I did test the disks but the rest just didn't happen.  Not my fault - I did everything I could think of - but now we have just tomorrow to complete testing, and I'm not working in the morning because I have to go to the hospital for my check up. Given all the aching that I've had of late I'm not missing it, no matter what. 
Can you tell I'm stressed? 

Food wise I was absolutely angelic. Exercise just didn't happen - I went to the post office at lunchtime and then cut my lunch break short to battle on. Also no booze even though the whisky was calling my name when I got home. 

I've never been so glad to get out of any office in my life as I was today - never. Note to self - in the unlikely event I'm working there at any future Christmas, book a day off when they announce the Christmas lunch date. And stick to it. 

Food today :
Breakfast: saut�ed pork mince, onion & peppers 
Lunch: homemade cream of mushroom soup. 
Dinner: Cottage pie made with lamb mince and topped with sliced sweet potato 
Snacks: Greek yogurt & a few tiny crumbs of pork scratchings 

Wednesday, December 17, 2014

So close

I worked from home again today and still, even after 2 days, my eye ached. I'm almost starting to wish there is something wrong so it could be fixed instead of hoping it's nothing. Grrr
Work was less good today due to frustrating time wasted trying (and failing) to reproduce an error so I could then prove it had been fixed. Yawn. 
No walking today. No exercise of any kind. 
We viewed a possible rental after work so once again another move may be on the horizon. Again. AGAIN. 
Also I nearly ate a protein cookie this afternoon. I walked into the room with the cookies,  sorted through the available selection,  picked one and headed out of the room... Then I stopped, threw the cookie back and walked out without it when I realised I wasn't hungry. And didn't want to eat that crap even if I was. I think the problem was that I had a gf sandwich for lunch and it made me want more carbs even though it was gf. But why am I still mindlessly heading for food when I'm not hungry? Obviously I'm glad for once I didn't follow through, but it would be nice not to have to remind myself that I'm not hungry to stop myself eating,  surely that's not normal? 
Food today :
Breakfast: eggs scrambled with pork mince,  onion & apple. 
Lunch: bought gf egg & watercress roll. 
Dinner: grilled chicken thighs with veg 
Snacks: Greek yogurt & cashews 

Tuesday, December 16, 2014

That could have been worse

I worked from home today since I was so uncomfortable in the office yesterday. I was quite busy all day so not too bored or lonely,  and had the TV on to fill the silence up. During my lunch break I had to go to the post office - but my local post office is a little further away than the one near work, so I still got a couple of miles walking in as well. 
Mostly today was good and I'm impressed that it was given that this morning I accidentally weighed myself. It was not a pleasant experience and I'm happy that I didn't dive into comfort eating to forget about it. Yay me!

Food today :
Breakfast: eggs scrambled with pork mince,  leek,  cauliflower and savoy cabbage 
Lunch: thrown together stir fry of pork mince, mushrooms,  red & green pepper and slightly limp lettuce with well fed's gf Paleo whole 30 'hoisin sauce'
Dinner: homemade burgers with sweet potato oven fries & salad 
Snacks: Greek yogurt 

Monday, December 15, 2014

Third Annual Squash Hunger Event!

The Greenhouse is collaborating with the Healthy World Cafe and the York County Food Alliance for the third annual Squash Hunger event. Squash Hunger is an event in which people come together to recover, preserve and share food in the community. Farmers from around Pennsylvania are setting aside their excess produce to be transformed into a delicious and nutritious soup for those in need. Please join us in sorting, preparing and freezing a bounty of squash soup. The soup will be donated to a host of groups working to end hunger in the York area.

The Greenhouse is a community organization dedicated to saving and sharing healthy food. We do this by recovering food that would have otherwise been wasted, preserving it in healthy and creative ways and then distributing it to the community.

You can help � We need volunteers and donations. Sign-Up at our "Volunteer Spot" link on this website.

Donations of containers, sweet potatoes, onions, garlic, carrots, cayenne, nutmeg, thyme, salt and pepper welcome.

Squash Hunger will take place on the weekend of the Martin Luther King, Jr. Day of Service.

More specifically, the event is scheduled for:
Friday January 16th 6 p.m. to 9 p.m.
Saturday January 17th from 9 a.m. to 1 p.m.
Sunday January 18th from 8 am to 12 noon and 1 p.m. to 5 p.m.
Monday January 19th from 8 am to 12 noon and 1 p.m. to 5 p.m.

Stay tuned for more details. This event is currently scheduled to take place at the Healthy World Cafe, 24 S. George Street, York, PA.

Ho hum

What a dreary day today was,  weatherwise - not that dreary isn't better than horrible. 
My weekend was not that exciting.  Saturday I shopped,  we drove by some possible rental houses and house purchases, then we watched a movie - Divergent.  Yesterday I worked for 3.5 hours on a deployment that had to be rolled back this morning, then went shopping before watching Captain America Winter Soldier (3D). I'm not certain but I don't think my eye is fond of 3D at present since it was fine on Saturday, not bad yesterday, and ached like a bastard most of today even though my only exercise was walking - 2 miles each on Saturday & Sunday and a massive 0.3 miles today. I had to resort to painkillers after rubbing it and sitting with one eye closed failed to help in the slightest. Of course it also could have been due to the world's slowest developing cold, which has progressed to the point of sometimes sneezing,  sometimes sore throat, and definitely congested. I do think I had a touch of sinusitis today in the former of apparent toothache that didn't get worse when I clenched my teeth or chewed,  which is an infallible sign of sinusitis for me. 
Work - apart from the rolled back deployment debacle - was quite entertaining today as the office Christmas party was on Friday and today was the first opportunity they had to wind each other up about the embarrassing stuff they did (or didn't do) while under the influence. 
During the morning I was so busy trying to investigate the bugs in the newly deployed software (thankfully really obscure and not my fault) while listening to the gossip that I wasn't hungry until lunchtime. Morning snacks are becoming less important to me gradually and I'm quite happy about that. 
Food wise I stayed low carb apart from my weekly Chinese meal on Saturday,  when I cooked kung pao chicken and chicken livers with oyster sauce and served them with rice.  Drinkwise I did less well,  having several beers and one bottle of cider . I think I now need to address the drinking - I don't drink that excessively despite probably sounding like a raging alcoholic on here, but it's not helping me to improve my health or weight, so it needs to stop for a while. Is it me or is there always something else to think about / change  / give up...? 

Food today :
Breakfast: eggs scrambled with bacon,  leftover sweet potato,  cauliflower and savoy cabbage 
Lunch: homemade cream of mushroom soup
Dinner: big bowl of salad 
Snacks: natural yogurt and pork scratchings 

Friday, December 12, 2014

Still ouchy

Eye still aching off and on today so definitely not the right time to start doing pushups. I freely admit it was dumb of me to do it right after my scare last week - I feel it should be healed enough by now and maybe it was till then, but something obviously changed again. I just felt so inspired for the first time in ages and I guess I didn't want to let it get away.  You've absolutely right through Diane, my eye is more important than the little bit of upper body strength lost. 
I'm feeling a bit down again today,  not sure if it's the small set back with the eye / exercise, the frankly revolting weather, (apologies if you're reading this in a blizzard, I am just talking about a bit of wind and rain), or maybe carb detox after 3 well-behaved days. Now 4! It was a weird day in terms of eating today. I have breakfast before work most of the time because eggs aren't very sociable things to cook or eat,  which means 6 hours between breakfast and my usual lunchtime at 12:00. Today I was feeling quite hungry around 10 am,  and thinking about eating my planned live natural yogurt snack when I had to go into a meeting. Whereupon I forgot to eat it until 11, at which point I again decided to just eat my lunch early and save the yogurt for after - which is exactly what I did. Considering that on some days I need to snack twice in a morning I think that's quite an improvement. Although being hungry this afternoon was less positive. I had literally no access to further snacks - even the rubbish vending machine was empty - so I just had to soldier on... Which led to snacking on cashews before dinner :-( ah well still clear of junk food and I had to walk 2 miles to get the nuts so that probably burned off at least 3 or 4 nuts.... 

Food today :
Breakfast: eggs scrambled with bacon, mushrooms and leek 
Lunch: homemade soup
Dinner: Cod in Parma ham with sweet potatoes 
Snacks: natural yogurt and cashews 

Thursday, December 11, 2014


I held back on the pushups today and still  had some eye aching during the day. I'm not sure if that suggests it wasn't caused by doing them yesterday or if it was and the eye is more bothered by them than I hoped. I'll try again tomorrow if the eye feels better  and re-evaluate the situation. I don't have a Swiss ball to use but I suppose I could do them with my hands  up on a step or take the compromise of doing them on my knees if necessary - though that's always seemed pointless to me.  I walked 2 miles at lunchtime - 2 very cold miles thanks to a rather chilly wind. I enjoyed it though, walking with a colleague and talking all the way meant it flew by. 
Still doing better with the food side of things today. I avoided junk food and starchy carbs all day (although I did eat a little fruit). I also had some peanut butter, as comfort for the aching eye thing, but it was 100% peanut, no added sugar or salt so I'm not particularly bothered about it. I'm back to being much less interested in food preparation again - as my dinner demonstrated... 

Food today :
Breakfast: eggs scrambled with bacon, mushrooms and leek 
Lunch: homemade soup and natural yogurt 
Dinner: tuna mayo with slices of yellow pepper & cucumber to scoop with. 
Snacks: pork scratchings 

Wednesday, December 10, 2014

I can do this...

Well,  staying low carb today was HARD.  I forgot to take my planned snack of Greek yogurt to work with me, and I was left with no access to suitable snacks at all. As always every option available in the office is sweet or potatoey-deep-fried crap. And I was hungry from about 10 am. However I stayed strong (OK there was some mental whimpering but it stayed internal) and did not buy anything evil. Actually I didn't even want anything from the vending machine despite feeling like my stomach was eating itself - I guess that proves it was habit /boredom more than being genuinely hungry, although if I'd planned to skip the snack I would have had a bigger breakfast. I just told myself if necessary I'd eat the lunchtime soup as a snack and then go out for something to replace it, and then didn't do so. I just ate a slightly earlier lunch - and bought some gf pork scratchings at lunchtime in case of more hunger. 
25 pushups today, leading to protesting shoulders. My eye ached a little bit, so I'm going to have to monitor that if I want to keep doing pushups, which I do if possible. Not because I like them, just because they're about the only form of resistance training I'm semi-comfortable with doing. And if strength and health are my priorities I know I should do something in that line, but I know resistance /weights can be problematic after a retinal detachment due to increased pressure inside the eye (and believe me, with this body pushups absolutely qualify as weights...) 
After work I walked a little - not far because it's less fun in the cold and dark, probably just under 2 miles. Still feeling better (even when hungry) 

Food today :
Breakfast: egg and bacon salad with homemade mayo and slice of roast butternut squash 
Lunch: homemade soup 
Dinner: Gammon with roasted savoy cabbage and broccoli (wheee exciting) 
Snacks: pork scratchings 

Tuesday, December 9, 2014


I have a cold sore at the moment. It's not a big deal except when I want to kiss someone, but it's also the third time in the past 4 months or so, where usually I get them once or twice a year - usually the onset of winter when my lips get chapped by the cold weather,  and occasionally if I spend too long in the summer sun. I was thinking, though,  when I spotted it,  that my immune system has gone to crap since going low carb /Paleo - I've had infected lymph nodes (twice although I only whinged on about it once), ear infections,  cold sores,  and I'm still feeling like I have a cold although it still hasn't developed beyond feeling constantly congested. And then I thought maybe I should just go back to eating the way I used to while losing weight, screw gluten free and low carb - laxatives are cheaper than antibiotics. But then I thought again. Immune system struggling - yes, definitely.  I've never been so unhealthy so much in my life. But blaming it on low carb? The truth is I've not been genuinely low carb since my eye operation in MAY, when I started comfort eating Krispy Kreme doughnuts while being self pitying and stuck in enforced idleness for 3 weeks. Which means I have been telling myself I'm eating low carb while being more or less high-refined-carb FOR NEARLY 6 MONTHS. And not very gluten free either. How did that happen? And if you're thinking "well, duh"... why didn't you tell me? Only joking, it's no-one's fault except mine. But damn. 
So no, I am not switching back to calorie counting while eating whatever I can squeeze into my allowance. Or trying to be a gf Paleo vegetarian (which I was also thinking about this morning). But gf and low carb - yes, that I will do,  because I felt so much better doing it before. I expect it will be hard going since I'll need to detox again. How stupid am I? Sigh. Obviously I wasn't kidding myself that I was doing well at the moment,  but I really hadn't realised how long it's been going on for. 
Well, anyway. 
Yesterday was a low carb day. 
Today was a low carb day. And I did push ups today (20 only,  but still - that's 20 more than I've done in - maybe a year?) and walked 2 miles at lunchtime. Feels good.

Food today :
Breakfast: egg and bacon salad with homemade mayo, romaine lettuce and tomatoes 
Lunch: homemade soup 
Dinner: Bolognese sauce on savoy cabbage noodles 
Snacks : Greek yogurt and a banana (I know banana isn't low carb but it was eaten as a whole fruit in hopes it would help sort out my constipation. And it did) 

Monday, December 8, 2014

Ups and downs

This weekend was yet another carb fest.  Maybe it's the cold weather,  maybe it's a vitamin D deficiency as I'm out of supplements at the moment,  or maybe I'm just completely hooked on the sweet stuff again - only not just sweetness, I also had a sausage roll and some artisan bread... Whatever the cause I know I have to do something about it.  I'm feeling bloated and I'm constipated... And I'm feeling resolved to act at last.  I know I've said similar things a million times and have no reason to feel that this time will be different, but I do feel like it's coming from a slightly different, slightly healthier place this time - not a knee jerk 'I'm disgusting and pathetic and need to be punished by never eating anything good again,' more an 'I don't feel healthy, strong or well and I do deserve to feel those things' place.  Who knows how long it will last? Not me - but if I don't make a start it definitely won't happen. 
I'm not prioritising weight loss for the moment,  just health and control. I've done it before and I can do it again. I can...

On a more cheerful note I have been trying to rediscover the love of cooking the last few weekends and haven't told you about it because I don't post on weekends... The last three weekends I've been cooking from my favourite cookbook, a book called 1000 Classic Chinese Recipes.  I've been following one familiar recipe and one totally new recipe to give a sort of Chinese takeaway eaten family style feel, and really have enjoyed it. So I'm continuing that as a weekly treat meal. So far I've cooked Asian Peanut Butter Pork (from crockpot365.blogspot. com not my cookbook) and red-cooked chicken; served leftover peanut butter Pork alongside chicken livers with bamboo shoots & water chestnuts; and on Saturday I did maple barbecued spare ribs (except I used belly pork strips instead of ribs) and hot chilli-chicken. 
Over the weekend I walked about 6 miles on Saturday and 4 on Sunday,  enjoying the absolutely perfect winter sunshine (while doing my weekly shop on foot instead of car).  I also worked for a bit yesterday, and then we watched The Desolation of Smaug - and thoroughly enjoyed it.

Food today :
Breakfast: Chicken leg with tomatoes 
Lunch: homemade soup & natural yogurt 
Dinner: lamb's heart in Sweet and Sour Sauce. With zoodles. 
Snacks : cashews, 2 roast chicken wings 

Sunday, December 7, 2014

Twist Series: Conditioning and Re-Twisting

1. Do you treat the twists as you would your normal detangled hair when washing/co-washing? i.e wash -> deep condition -> LOC method. 

My answer: Yes, I do.  (Backtrack: "Twist Series: Washing & Matting".)  After washing, I apply conditioner to my twists down to my ends.  I let the conditioner sit for however long (15-45 minutes) and then rinse.  When rinsing, it helps to squeeze my twists in order to squeeze out most of the conditioner.  I then plop my hair to help it air dry and moisturize + seal.
If my hair is not that dirty and/or I want to preserve the "neatness" of my twists a little longer, I sometimes use this washing method instead.  For this latter washing method, it is very important that I use thoroughly diluted shampoo rather than shampoo alone.

2. How do you re-do the twists you mentioned? Do you unravel, detangle, re-twist and then wash all of them or do you wash first then unravel and re-twist? 

My answer: I wash them first, allow them to air dry to about 60-80%, then unravel and re-twist them. When un-raveling them, I also make sure to remove any shed hair.

"Soul" Food Sunday || That Breath ...

Thursday, December 4, 2014

Goodish news

Apparently my eye is probably not about to fall out / explode,  that's good isn't it?
It seems that the achy / pressure sensation I was having was down to the vitreous fluid pulling the retina,  which it is not supposed to do,  and the new floaters were caused by this pulling actually pulling off some of the pigment cells.  Bit revolting,  but not in itself dangerous.  There is a slight chance that it could result in another detachment so I have a follow-up appointment in a couple of weeks to check it isn't progressing,  plus another reminder to come straight back if the symptoms get worse,  but it's not currently worrying.  The consultant seemed very very thorough,  studying it for what seemed like ages with 2 different lenses,  so I'm sure she would have spotted any hint of a detachment or tear.  So I can relax now. Although relaxed is not how I felt during the regulation 2 hours hanging around the casualty waiting room roasting to death and wondering if I'd been forgotten.  Ah well,  over now - at least for a fortnight.

Tuesday, December 2, 2014


I spent this morning in the eye casualty department at the Royal Berkshire.  It was just as much fun as the last time I spent hours sitting on an uncomfortable chair with dilated pupils and my kindle font size so big it could only display 8 words per page.
Turns out I have a bleed in my eye of unknown origin and will be going back on Thursday for a consult with the surgical retina specialist (today it was a medical retina specialist - and no,  I don't know what the difference is.

As always when I have this kind of issue my food wasn't  stellar but I didn't binge exactly...  Comfort eating yes,  but bingeing no.
And I got my hospital visit 4 miles walk in too. Although the weather was rubbish.  Which was a good thing on the way home with my scarily dilated demon eyes sucking in every bit of ambient light.

Monday, December 1, 2014

Panicking a little bit

I had a lovely day on Saturday visiting my Mum & her other half, with some walking and a lot of talking, plenty of motherly hugs and relaxation. My brother came over as well so we had a good chat. I went on the train again and this time they ran on time with no cancellations so it was all good and much less tiring than last time. 
Yesterday I had trouble getting up after a restless night - eventually dragging myself out of bed at about 6am and jumping head first into a massive mug of coffee. I didn't really wake up till I went for a walk mid-morning, but six miles later I finally felt fairly alert (and with a couple of blisters to help me stay awake). In the afternoon we watched the ridiculous movie Riddick and then a ton of TV,  after which I went to bed with a headache and a million painkillers. I slept really well after that though! 
Over the weekend I ate some naughty things and definitely overate, but didn't actually binge at any point and consider that a minor success. 
Less positively I've been having some concerns about my eye for the last week or so. First it started aching again, feeling a bit like it did later in the post op healing stages,  but as I was feeling congested and sinusy I didn't worry too much.  Yesterday I noticed new floaters and today my vision in that eye seems a bit foggy.  I'm famous for hypochondria and I'm sure any longer term readers recall that I was paranoid about complications at the time, so I hope I'm just worrying about nothing but given the high incidence of cataracts following surgery, as well the possibility of further detachments, I don't want to risk it. Not to mention that getting the all clear would just make me feel better straight away. So I have an appointment at the Royal Berkshire tomorrow morning to get it checked out. 

Food today :
Breakfast: Gammon, mushroom & leek scrambled eggs 
Lunch: homemade soup 
Dinner: big salad with tuna mayo 
Snacks: homemade pork rinds & cashews