Greetings, on this hottest of hot days -
It was 38 degrees here, and the hottest October day in nine years...
When I went outside around 2.00 pm, it was like walking into the Fires of Hell!
Jacarandas are in full bloom, weeks earlier than usual ...
I've had the girls over, for a day of sewing and telling...
Look at the block R made me for my French-themed Friendship quilt...
Eiffel Towers, French Perfume: what's not to love?
The gifted R also has been busy making a gorgeous and charming scrapbook:
Textured and painted cover, with buttons, flowers, and trinkets.
I wish I could construct something like that..
L finished her beautiful quilt: what a triumph!
While we were stitching, a parcel arrived containing these sweet stitching patterns from my friend Michelle Ridgway.
Pop on over to her lovely blog to see what else she has been drawing up..
I finished the pink linen dress, put lace on the hem of the lining, wore it for photos -
and studying the photos realised it looks wrong in the shoulders.
Now being pulled apart and re-worked.
A few people asked about my recent diet and weight loss.
I am certainly not qualified to give advice in this area, but I will tell you a little of how it came about.
Nine months post my mastectomy in 2012, I could not regain my former level of wellness, despite my normal active lifestyle, walks and weekly gym class.
I have been a member of Weight Watchers for 30 years, every few years going again for a while, lose a bit, eventually put it back on: the usual story.
During that period of reflection after my cancer, I realised I had to take control of this issue for myself. Going to weekly meetings did not work for me, neither did counting the points. I never focussed beyond the next weigh-in, and my daily food intake was to use up every 'point' of food allowed. And I got tired of writing food diaries.
The setting of goals never really worked either, as it just seemed to put me under pressure.
Following the hospital guidelines for eating after breast cancer, I devised my own plan. Mostly organic food, lots of fish, both fresh and canned mainly salmon and tuna, red meat only once/week, avoid as much as possible any processed food or chemicals. I cut out artificial sweetener and other chemical additives. The only thing I measure out is 1/3 cup of traditional rolled oats each morning. I make it with water, and usually have an apple cut up and mixed in.
I have 3-4 pieces of fresh fruit, 3 small protein serves, cooked very simply.
Usually 3 milk serves, eg skim milk coffee, 1/2 cup almond milk, small amount plain low-fat yoghurt. No sugar.
I have unlimited salads and steamed vegetables, and use olive oil to cook, a bit of olive oil spread or butter. No margarine.
I try to limit the carbs to 4 per day: the oats, 2 brown bread, and one other.
After losing the first 10kg, I gave up potato/rice/pasta at night, and don't miss it. I avoid any carbs after late afternoon.
This is so easy to remember I don't need to write it down, or count things other than in my head.
If I deviate for social reasons, I don't stress about it. I just keep portions very small, leave quite a bit on the plate, and make the next meal or next day a little leaner. Sometimes I do an extra walk.
There is no real goal such as a certain weight, or deadline, or special occasion, so that takes off the pressure.
If it takes another year to lose a bit more, that's OK too.
I feel so much better that I mainly focus on just sticking to what works.
There are another couple of reasons for going slowly.
My skin is getting wrinkled as I shrink - I am using lots of oil and moisturisers, and hope by going slowly it will improve with time.
The other issue is my prosthetic left breast. They are expensive.
I have gone down one size, and need to buy another smaller size.
The good news is it is great fun catching up with old friends I haven't seen for a year or two, and seeing the astonishment on their faces!
Have a great week - and keep cool!