Long Weekend Ahead

I saw this lady with a bird on her shoulder in the subway. At first, she was not happy with me taking photos and turned away, but later, she came over by me and asked me if I wanted to hold the bird. I saw my train coming, so I declined her offer. She kept speaking to me as I told her that my train was here and even as I walked onto it. I felt a little bad that I had to hop on and couldn’t finish my conversation, but I needed to meet my hubby and plan out some fun stuff for the weekend.

Breakfast: Strawberry Almond Rhubarb Loaf

Lunch: Italian Sweet and Sour Meatballs with Lemon Asparagus Risotto.

Dinner: Chicken with Zuchini, Eggplant, String Beans and Cabbage.

Free Hugs

I saw this guy giving away free hugs in Times Square. I don’t think he was one of the “free hugs” people that you see all over New York.  He seemed to be a rogue hugger.

He had an amusing sign, which made me laugh, especially with the juxtaposition of the very serious look on his face. In true New York fashion, he asked me for money after I snapped his shot. I politely declined. It made me wonder if the hugs were actually free.

Breakfast: Cheese Crepe with Spinach.

Lunch: Whole Wheat Mac and Lite Cheese with Broccoli. I can truly say that it is VERY difficult to eat a tiny plate of mac and cheese!

Dinner: Tilapia with Veggies.

Another Day, Another Workout

After skipping a workout the day before, I had to push it hard today. I walked to class and began to sweat, while having a lot of fun with my classmates and Marina.

I like to call this picture above, “Cat on a Hot Tin Step!” Cat Migliaccio was working hard and I loved the way her leg was pumped forward.

Jump, jump, jump!

Here, Marina is pushing us to shrink our thighs even more.

After class, I met Ray and had a delicious snack on Broadway. We found an open table and ate green grapes and cherries before walking home. I love that you can always find a place to sit from Times Square to 34th Street.

Breakfast: Scrambled Eggs and Chili. Sometimes, putting things on a small plate tricks my mind, but today was one of those days where I just wanted more to eat and had to use my will power to restrain myself!

Lunch: Chicken Parmesan with Whole Wheat Spaghetti Noodles. I threw in my Eclipse bracelets, since I saw it earlier that morning!

Dinner: Veggie Patty with Potatoes, Zucchini and Tomatoes.

Official Release of Twilight

My sister-in-law came into town to see the triple feature and official release of Eclipse tonight. From 6:30PM-2:30AM, we were in the theatre. That meant, I skipped my workout, but that was fine to do one day, in order to see the book series come to life! I was very sleep deprived the next day, but it was worth it! A 1000 people filled the theatre that day in just Regal Battery Park and it was the largest world wide release ever!

The only full meal I ate today was breakfast: Salmon on a Multigrain Muffin. Grapefruit.

Semi-Dinner: I had some junk at the movie theatre. I ate popcorn and sour skittles. I’m pretty sure those things added up to my 1300 allotted calories a day!

Book Club and Foods

I mentioned in an earlier post that I went to see the Eclipse Pre-Screening. If you want to read my thoughts about the book series, read that post. It was a super fun day. I even had my photo snapped with lead vampire Edward…er…I mean a cutout of Edward on the “red carpet.” Of course, I wore my British shirt and he loved it. :O)

Breakfast: Uhoh, I didn’t eat breakfast today. I was in a rush and didn’t have time to make my oatmeal. Forgive me!

Lunch: Lunch at the Tate with Marina. We enjoyed delicious Turkey and Cheese Sandwiches with Lettuce and Tomatoe on Wheat Bread, while overlooking the city view and enjoying a breeze. I also splurged and drank Diet Pepsi in a pretty wine glass filled with ice.

Dinner: Because I ate about 300 less calories today (since I skipped breakfast), I decided it was OK to eat some Chinese food for dinner. Orange Chicken and Brocolli.

Eclipse Pre-Screening

Don’t judge me! I love Stephanie Meyer’s Twilight series. As I mentioned in last week’s post, I was invited to a free pre-screening to the film because of my wonderful book club. I loved the anticipation of seeing the movie and getting an early preview of the movie before its opening the following day.

I know that it may be bizarre that at my age I love a story that was written for teens, but I find that a lot of people feel the same way. In fact, there was a great article written by Caitlin Flanigan in the Atlantic explaining why it is that adults love this series. The following quote really describes my own feelings about why Twilight is so sensational.

“Twilight is fantastic. It’s a page-turner that pops out a lurching, frightening ending I never saw coming. It’s also the first book that seemed at long last to rekindle something of the girl-reader in me. In fact, there were times when the novel—no work of literature, to be sure, no school for style; hugged mainly to the slender chests of very young teenage girls, whose regard for it is on a par with the regard with which just yesterday they held Hannah Montana—stirred something in me so long forgotten that I felt embarrassed by it.”

I haven’t met anyone who didn’t love the series when they read it and trust me, I judged others when I was told to read it. My initial reaction was, “Seriously? You want me to read a book about vampires?!” But, I will admit I was wrong and I recommend the series to everyone.

Twilight brought out emotion that you remember when you were younger and you would long to read one book after the next. This is the first book series I found in my adult life where I read all four books in 6 days, not minding the little sleep. I left all responsibilities for those six days because I was completely immersed in this gorgeous love story. I also love the fact that it’s a very innocent love story and abstinence in this series is extremely sexy. This series rekindled so many emotions in me and felt like it awoke me from regular routines and inspired me to open my eyes again.

World Cup Truck

Down in the Meatpacking District, I walked past this ESPN Match Truck, which is currently focused on The World Cup. For those that want to watch the World Cup outdoors and with others, this truck is located squarely in the middle of the street. Every day, the truck changes location. For more info on where it will be, click on the link above.

Errands and Eating

Sundays are usually days where I catch up on things and go to Mass.

One of my errands included grocery shopping. I couldn’t resist beautiful fresh cut flowers from Trader Joe’s. For $4.99, these inexpensive flowers add a touch of color and nature to my living room.

Below is what I ate throughout the day!

Breakfast: Honey Bunches of Oats with Skim Milk and Coffee.

Lunch: Salmon Sandwich with Hot Sauce on a Multigrain Muffin.

Dinner: Whole Wheat Spaghetti Noodles with Beef and Veggies.

Morning Adobe Photo Walk

Though I appreciate my Saturday sleep in days, I was willing to give it up today for the Adobe Photowalk with Bryan O’Neil Hughes and Tom Hogarty. If you’re thinking most photographers are male, you’re right and the photo below is accurate. It always seems a bit unbalanced in that department. That’s why I’m here, to take it over! :O)

My hubby and I woke up and walked over to Fotocare at 6th Ave and 22nd St. We met a few people and walked over to the High Line Park, a park built over concrete and old railroad tracks that opened up last year around the Fourth of July.

As we walked there, I took a few photos of anything I found interesting. I thought this sign was funny and used a fish eye lens to create the distortion and capture the building behind it.

I took a few shots of flowers in the park. The first one just caught my eye. The flowers were beautiful and pink and immediately brought a smile to my face.

This second shot I took, my hubby likes to call “A Flower in a Tornado,” because of the grass twisting viciously around this pretty flower.

We lost the group and walked back through the meatpacking district. It’s such an interesting neighborhood. Amongst high end stores and restaurants are empty areas like this with random advertisements or graffiti.

Ray took this shot above of the graffiti. I loved the way the light fell and he caught it before I noticed it, so I need to give him props for a job well done. I played with Topaz on this photo to give it a little extra edge.

Breakfast: Oatmeal with Cinnamon and Raisins. I apologize for the bad photo, but I was in a rush to have a great breakfast before a long walk.

Late Lunch: Veggie Pita with Mushroom, Cabbage, Asparagus, Greenbeans and Cheese. All of this was warmed up and toasted in the toaster oven.

Dinner: Chili, Corn and Beans with Hot-sauce.

Bad News on Day 69

I was on my way to my pilates workout and then an Adobe Lightroom and Photoshop Conference in the evening, when I received some bad news. I found out, by email, that I was kicked out of the program. Apparently, I didn’t meet their numbers and they cannot use my results, even though I may still be in some of the infomercial.

As you can imagine, I was shocked and disappointed by the news, so I skipped the pilates workout and went straight to the conference.  While walking there, I called my husband, my parents and a couple of friends before entering into the Manhattan Ballroom to begin learning about Adobe Photoshop CS5. I was so happy to talk to each of these people to make me feel better after this terrible news. My friends, Monika and Joanna, were so sweet to me–they bought me some cute gifts to console me! Who goes out of their way like that?! It also made me feel good to go to a photography conference and get absorbed in the vast amount of wonderful things that you can do with a program and a photo.

I have to say that I find being removed from the program completely unjustified and unwarranted. I lost my weight in a very healthy way over these last 69 days. To date, I’ve lost 17.5 lbs and have muscle in places I didn’t realize could have toning and strength. I also started out fairly small, with only 20 or so lbs to lose, so it’s shocking that 20 days before the program is over, I am kicked out.

After receiving this news, I took the weekend to think about it and made a few decisions.

  1. I decided that I would continue the 90 day program on my own because I still have my own goals to complete. I also want to do it for you wonderful readers who constantly urge me and inspire me to keep working hard to get to my ideal weight and strength.
  2. I promised 90 days, so I will definitely continue documenting my 90 days of food, workouts and activities. (Luckily, I can still take a few classes with Marina and she’ll be continuing classes afterward).
  3. I decided to unfreeze my gym membership and make sure I attain my goals, whether it takes 90 days or a bit longer.
  4. I wrote out my thoughts and emailed them to the Gaiam team, though I haven’t heard back yet.
  5. Even though I was kicked down and essentially slapped in the face, I decided to get back up and challenge myself without anyone backing me.

Breakfast: Yogurt and Granola Parfait.

Lunch: Chicken and Lite Cheddar Cheese with Red Crushed Peppers on a Multigrain Muffin.

Dinner: After the conference, Ray took me out for dinner to Jackson Hole, a fantastic burger place. After the depressing news today, I was really in the mood for a splurge. I had a Mexican Cheese Burger, with tons of fresh jalapenos and Steak Fries.

We also split a decadent chocolate cake with vanilla ice cream. It was worth every bite.

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